Free the Oregon Zoo Elephants is committed to achieving freedom for the remaining five Oregon Zoo elephants, fulﬁlling the promises Metro, the elected regional government for the Portland area, and Oregon Zoo ofﬁcials made to voters in in the 2008 campaign to promote the $125 million Zoo Bond Measure.
It started in 2008
In 2008 Metro voters approved a $125 million Oregon Zoo Bond Measure, $31 million of which was dedicated to providing more humane conditions for the eight Oregon Zoo elephants. Of the $31 million, $12 million was budgeted for an off-site, 100 + acre elephant reserve, where the elephants would freely roam, the carrot Metro and Oregon Zoo ofﬁcials dangled in front of voters in return for their support. The $19 million balance was budgeted to expand the current elephant exhibit from 1.5 to 6.25 acres.
And continued in 2011
In 2011 there was a complete reversal from the original intent and spirit of the bond measure. Oregon Zoo ofﬁcials announced a new “Master Plan”, the focus of which is to utilize the expanded elephant exhibit, now named “Elephant Lands”, to begin an aggressive breeding program with the misguided goal of bringing scores of baby elephants into lifetimes of captivity. Even more shocking is their plan to utilize the off-site reserve, not as an acreage where the elephants would roam freely, but as a “Remote Elephant Center” to support their extreme elephant breeding program – a breeding program which will require the Oregon Zoo to purchase, trade or rent breeding stock from other zoos, circuses, and side shows. With this announcement, the Oregon Zoo enters the big money, high-stakes elephant breeding trade which provides elephants to zoos and other organizations for proﬁt.
There are no limits to what the Oregon Zoo will do to distinguish itself as leader in the elephant breeding industry. Metro and Oregon Zoo ofﬁcials will break every promise, waste every tax dollar, and expose elephants to every danger and horror of captive breeding in their efforts to dominate the captive elephant breeding trade.
Our Goals: 2017
To halt the failed breeding program that has resulted in the early deaths of many elephants and condemned the world’s largest land mammals to small, barren enclosures for life.
To halt any plans to import elephants from the wild. And to ensure the safety of the elephants and keepers, we encourage the zoo to move in the direction of more progressive zoos and institute protected contact.
To ensure that Oregon Zoo ofﬁcials take immediate action to release the lone pygmy Borneo elephant Chendra to a sanctuary in a warm, dry climate, to spend the rest of her life in peace and freedom.
Priority 2017: Chendra to Sanctuary
Chendra was brought to the Oregon Zoo in 1999 at around the age of 4. It is said that she was an orphan and had to be rescued to the zoo to save her life. We quetion whether there was another sanctuary in Southeast Asia that could have taken her. Within a few months of her arrival at the Zoo, Chendra developed foot problems which continue to this day. She is blind in one eye, and has experienced bullying from the rest of the herd, as Chendra is a subspecies of Asian elephants. She exhibits profound stereotytpical behavior and deserves the opportunitiy to live the rest of her life in a warm, dry, spacious and serene sanctuary.
Recent News About Packy
In the fall of 2016, Packy was diagnosed with an active strain of TB. So after enduring 3 years of TB drug treatment, Packy is not cured of his disease and he will have to remain in isolation, probably for the rest of his life as the zoo has not been able to find a way to treat the TB–which is found only in captive elephants.
On February 9, 2017, Packy was put down at the zoo. We are requesting records to find out why his life was taken, when his keepers say he was doing well.
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