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Daniel Hazelton is one of our newest members. He's a great athlete and a blast to have around the gym. Welcome Daniel!

Jake Howard took 1st place in the Weekly Challenge WOD offered from CF Santa Clara. Go HERE to check out the video! Awesome job Jake.

Sunday: Rest Day and time for some thoughts.  The recent tragedy at Sea World raises an interesting subject. Should animals be kept in captivity? What is the goal besides entertainment for humans? Are we doing significant study that in the long run, benefits the animals and us? Are these animals happier and better off being kept in captivity? Can we ask them? Is this our place to control nature? We can reflect on many tragedies with countless other species that ended in loss of life. On a personal note, I do not go to zoos and I believe animals belong in the wild. Thoughts?

9 Responses

  1. Mike Shaw

    Someone needs to put Jake Howard in captivity cause he's a freakin animal…

    Seriously though, animals belong in the wild. Captivity is cruel and unusual and imo doesn't benefit the animal in anyway. The one exception I would have would be trying to introduce an endangered species back into the wild.

    Speaking of wild animals, spring turkey season is coming up in April. Anyone interested in becoming a true "hunter/gatherer"?

  2. dan thacker

    Mike, Although I have never hunted, I read an article that really made me curious about satisfying my "inner cavemen." Yes, I think it's perfectly natural to hunt, kill, and untilize wild game. It's certainly less cruel than anything that goes on in the food industry. Do you turkey hunt?

  3. Trey

    I agree, animals do belong in their natural habitats. That being said however, I think zoos fulfill a very important role–they educate people (and kids in particular) so that they grow to truly appreciate wildlife, much more so than if they only saw animals on television. This in turn creates/funds hundreds of conservation causes–tens of millions of dollars flow to rainforest preservation, gorilla sanctuaries, habitat protection for tigers, etc. If normal, everyday people never got the chance to see or appreciate the wonders of the animal kingdom via the .001 percent of the animals in zoos, I fear the other 99.999% of their brothers might suffer in the end. We humans have a nasty habit of destroying everything around us eventually, and are particularly harsh (and even cruel) to species we have little empathy or experience with–and zoos help build that empathy from a very early age for those lucky enough to have exposure to them. But before you all think I'm nothing but a tree-huggin' hippy– next time you see me, remind me to tell you about the story behind me being banned from the St. Louis Zoo for a year (while in college) due to a gibbon attack. Seriously. Yes, I AM that full of surprises… 🙂

  4. Mike Shaw

    Dan, although I haven't specifically hunted for turkey, when you buy an archery tag during deer season, it also includes turkey. The archery deer season is in the fall through Jan 15th. I have yet to shoot a deer with a bow, but have with a gun before. Hunting turkey is very hard, and you almost have to know where they are to have any chance what so ever. They have tremendous eye sight and of course have the advantage of flight.

  5. Tawn

    And…the have a good memory. If you hunt in the same place every year they won't come near the spot where you destroyed their kin the year before. Unless of course, you provide amazing food for them that just can't be resisted. Several of my friends plant crops just for the turkey to graze.

  6. Margaret

    ok I feel like I have to comment…considering I want to work at SeaWorld/Discovery Cove when I get out of school. And I'm doing a project on SeaWorld right now so here it goes.
    There are five justifications:
    1. As Trey stated- Education: Millions visit parks/zoos every year and most of these individuals will not have to opportunity to observe these animals in the wild. What a great opportunity for people to see these animals up close to not only learn about them but to increase public awareness and a deeper appreciation for wildlife.
    2. Care for the Animals: I know at SeaWorld, routine medial examinations are performed in order to make sure the animals are in optimal condition. Most of the animals have been trained to provide the caretakers with easy way to perform medical examinations which causes the least amount of stress for the animal and the caretaker. This care allows the staff to keep detailed husbandry records.
    3. Breeding Programs: SeaWorld and Busch Gardens have successfully bred many endangered species. Think about those species that would be extinct if it weren't for these types of programs. Also, the care the animals receive allow them to have more successful breeding programs.
    4. Research: Coming from a Psychology major, nothing is more interesting than studying the minds of animals. Through training, animals learn to respond to different stimuli in their environment, allowing researchers to gather scientific information that would not otherwise be available. The combination of field work and research done within the park provides us with the significant amount of knowledge we have about the animals. We also have the ability to learn about specific kinds of communication among the animals such as echolocation and the general vocal development in whales and dolphins.
    5. Physical and Mental Stimulation: The animals are constantly stimulated through the interactive habitats, interaction programs, and EEGs (Environmental Enrichment Devices). I understand the animals do not have the same kind of stimulation (hunting prey/escaping predators) as they would in the wild, but the caretakers make sure that the animals have adequate physical and mental stimulation in order to keep them healthy and active.

    Dan did give me a warning this post was coming so I had ample time to gather my thoughts, and I obviously have a passion for working with animals so sorry for such a novel.

  7. Mshaw

    Seeing an animal at seaworld or discovery cove or at a zoo is not the same as seeing it in the wild.
    What if you were that animal at seaworld? Would you be content in a tank or cage and have studies done on you?
    I can understad the educational stance on the subject, but just because we WANT to know more doesn't mean it's right to do it by any means necessary…

  8. Jeff Thayer

    Great job Jake, that was awesome, but you need to get a hair cut, shave a couple seconds off your time. LOL (I am just jealous!)

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