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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

FROM AUSTRAILA

Animal activist unhappy about circus visit to Port Macquarie

The Stardust Ringmaster with his lions (ABC Local: Adam St James)
02.09.2011A mid north coast animal activist is not happy about the current tour of the region by a circus company.
Stardust Circus opens its tent flaps in Port Macquarie today after performances in Taree.
Animal activist Sarah Tilling is hoping people will not support a circus that stages live animal acts.
She says the animals including, moneys, lions and horses are kept in upsetting conditions..
They're kept in small enclosures and made to travel around the country in trucks for the majority of the year.
"To us it's not right, at the moment the lions are kept in an enclosure basically the size of a tennis court."
She says a circus is not the best place to learn about animals.
"I think seeing an animal in its natural environment shows an animal's intelligence.
" Jumping through a hoop is something that we make them do.
"It's not a natural behaviour.
"I think it's good that they do give some sort of presentation on the animal and that is certainly educational.
"But anything that is not normal to the animal's behaviour is not educational," she said.
But the Stardust circus ringmaster Adam St James has defended the way the animals are cared for.
"We have a very strict code of practice in this country.
"The animals are allowed in trailer only for a certain amount of hours of the day then they must be released out into their exercise yard.
"We can be inspected anytime of the day or night by RSPCA or Bio Security, all theses types of organisations.
"These groups also stipulate how big our yards have go to be to keep the animals in.
" So to say that they're carted around the back of the countryside ina truck is a little bit ridiculous.
"They are from town to town and as soon as they get to the town they're released out into their yard again."

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