There is rather a bizarre Nannyish story emanating from the zoo of my old university town of Edinburgh.
Some five months ago two rare breed Red River Hog piglets (named Sammi and Becca) were born in the zoo, as part of a special breeding program begun for the animals in 2004.
In fact they were the first born Red River Hog piglets born at the zoo since the start of the special breeding program.
For you see loyal readers the piglets were recently "euthanised".
They were deemed to be "surplus of the species".
In June, three more piglets were born at the zoo; males called Ellis, Moses and Nelson.
At this point the European Endangered Species Program (EEP) reclassified Sammi and Becca as "a surplus of the species". The zoo was ordered to destroy the two females, rather than find another home for them.
The EEP are of the view that this policy "strengthens the genetic diversity of the species".
The zoo chose to obey orders, rather than re-home the piglets.
I am not a biologist, but quite honestly the policy sounds like utter bollocks to me. Surely the more breeding, the greater the genetic diversity and hence greater resistance to future threats (eg disease etc)?
Don't get me wrong, I love a good pork chop as much as the next man. However, this policy to my naive accounting brain sounds like utter bollocks (Edinburgh Zoo isn't part of "Project Prevention" by any chance is it?).
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