A CONTROVERSIAL Mallorca zoo has hit back after angry tourists complained about the ‘poor physical and mental condition’ of the animals.
One holiday-maker described, ‘emaciated tigers, a bald monkey, injured birds and animals in poor condition, physically and mentally’ at Safari Zoo, in Sa Coma, near Porto Cristo.
Her claims were printed in both the Sun newspaper and followed up in Mallorca paper Ultima Hora as well as the Euro Weekly News, that does not have a journalist on the island.
Although Brooklyn Webber, from Suffolk, was outraged at what she described as the ‘zoo from hell’, others were quick to defend the park, which is 50 years old.
“People tend to forget these animals are almost always rescued or injured before coming to a zoo or safari park like this,” said Anne-Marie Walker, a retired zookeeper in Palma, told the Olive Press this week.
“Many of the bigger animals have been rescued from circuses or other dangerous situations,” the expat from Boston continued.
The German zoo owner also hit back at the negative press.
“The photos and comments shared on Facebook and TripAdvisor do not accurately represent conditions at the park,” said director Henning Mentz, who is based on the island.
“One claims to show a monkey losing its hair when in fact, he had recently undergone surgery that required a section on the monkey’s back to be shaved.”
He continued: “The zoo has a vet on-site at all times to tend to the animals should they suffer injury or become sick.”
And, most alarmingly, he insisted one of the photos shared this week of a ‘sick tiger’ was actually a photo taken 10 years ago.
Part of the reason the safari park was originally opened in Mallorca in 1969 – 50 years ago – is that the climate is very similar to that of the animals’ native homes in Africa.