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ANIMALS

France goes ape over club’s ‘zoo night’ with caged tigers

A nightclub in northern France has come under fire after teaming up with a circus to promise a "zoo night" for party goers this Saturday featuring caged tigers and panthers.

France goes ape over club's 'zoo night' with caged tigers
Photo: Jim Mullhaupt/Flickr
Nightclub L'Alegra in the town of Chalons-en-Champagne in the département of Marne in northern France has promised “an extraordinary evening” together with the star cast of My Amazing Circus. 
 
Yes, for as little as €6, clubbers can share their nightclub experience with a tiger, panther, puma, monkey, snakes and “sexy gogo dancers”, boasts the event's Facebook page.
 
But the club, which offers “ten different rooms with ten different moods” as well as wildlife, apparently, has come under fire for the event. 
 
 
Indeed, animal rights activists are fuming, and have urged supporters to contact the local mayor in an effort to get the event canned. 
 
“We're against this because it's nothing but a circus show in a nightclub,” head of Les Félins group, Cyril Leduc, told Metronews
 
He added that endangered species such as tigers and pumas “have no place in a night club show”.
 
Other animal groups have spoken out too, with Code Animal pointing out that there are rules specifically in place to prevent such shows.
 
“Any animal in a sentient state should be put in conditions that are compatible with the biological needs of their species,” says article L214-1, reported the paper. 
 
A group against Saturday's show has meanwhile gained over 3,000 members on Facebook
 
“Respect the dignity of animals,” the page reads. “No to wild animals in a nightclub.”

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TOURISM

France’s Asterix park to shut down dolphin show

A major amusement park in northern France said on Monday it would close its dolphin and sea lion aquarium, the day before lawmakers start to debate new animal welfare rules.

France's Asterix park to shut down dolphin show
France has long discussed imposing stricter rules on using wild animals in amusement parks. Illustration photo: AFP

The dolphin shows are a popular attraction at Parc Asterix, which normally has some two million visitors a year, but have long been a target of animal rights activists.

“We've been thinking about this for several years,” the park's managing director Nicolas Kremer told Le Parisien newspaper, saying the site wanted to focus instead on rides and other shows.

He said the dolphins would be transferred to other aquariums in Europe in the next two months, adding: “Reintroduction in a natural environment is not possible for these animals raised in captivity.”

A ban on captive breeding of dolphins and other marine mammals as well as their use in shows is a key part of the draft law, with the debate due to begin on Tuesday.

A previous effort to outlaw the practices by decree in 2017 was thrown out by the Council of State, France's highest administrative court, but animal rights group have kept up pressure for the ban.

“These associations think that captivity is abuse, but I can tell you that we have always ensured the wellbeing of our animals,” Kremer said.

The park, based on the beloved Asterix the Gaul comics, is hoping to reopen for the busy summer season on April 3rd if coronavirus restrictions are lifted by then.

READ ALSO: Disneyland Paris to begin 'phased reopening' in July

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