Update on MALF investigation

March 7, 2024:-   The Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries (MALF) has conducted a comprehensive investigation into the welfare of the Red Kangaroo housed at the Emperor Valley Zoo. A specialised team led by MALF’s Chief Technical Officer (Ag), Denny Dipchansingh, and Director of Animal Production and Health, Dr Michelle Mellows, was deployed to the zoo to assess the conditions and health of the animal in question.

 

Upon thorough examination, the team determined that the animal, which was the subject of concern, is in fair health. Veterinary experts found the kangaroo to be bright, alert, and responsive to stimuli. The assessment report indicated that the animal moves with ease within its enclosure, indicating a satisfactory level of physical activity.

 

It should be noted that the Zoo does not only house wildlife for public display. In different sections of the facility, the Zoo keeps animals seized by Game Wardens and used as Court Exhibits; it houses wildlife rescued or recovered from around the country and it houses wildlife surrendered to the Zoo by keepers who cannot continue to maintain the wildlife. This wildlife are in different physical condition and every effort is made to care for them and improve their condition.

 

The Red Kangaroo was brought in January 2023 with physical issues from another facility to the Zoo. Based on the MALF team’s observations, the kangaroo is estimated to be between 15 and 20 years old, which is consistent with the expected level of muscle loss at that age. The enclosure which the animal is housed in was deemed adequate for the animal’s movement and activity, ensuring its well-being.

 

Furthermore, the investigation revealed that since the kangaroo was brought to the Zoo, it has been provided with a wholesome diet consistent with standard care. This diet includes fresh vegetables and specially formulated chow supplemented with minerals. Routine checks for parasites are conducted, with all tests returning negative results. Environmental enrichment tests are also regularly performed to assess the animal’s responsiveness to its environment.

 

Key officials from the Ministry, including Chief Technical Officer, Denny Dipchansingh, Director of Animal Production and Health, Dr. Mellows, and Dr. Lisa Musai, along with other veterinary officers, were present during the assessment. Representatives from the Zoo also participated, ensuring transparency and collaboration in our efforts to uphold animal welfare standards.

 

In light of these findings, Senator Kazim Hosein, Minister of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries, reaffirmed the Ministry’s commitment to ensuring the welfare and well-being of all animals under its care and supervision. “The health and safety of the animals in our care are of utmost importance to us,” stated Senator Hosein. “We will continue to monitor the situation closely and take appropriate action to address any concerns that may arise.”

 

 

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