Circus wild animals likely banned in Wales

| 8th July 2019
The Wild Animals and Circuses (Wales) Bill is expected to be laid before the National Assembly today.

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The use of wild animals in travelling circuses could be made illegal in Wales.

Legislation preventing the use of camels, zebras and reindeer was "overwhelmingly backed" following a consultation by the Welsh government.

The Wild Animals and Circuses (Wales) Bill is expected to be laid before the National Assembly today (Monday) and could see anyone flouting the law left facing an unlimited fine.

Ethical

Lesley Griffiths, minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, said animals should be "treated with dignity and respect".

She said: "The declining number of wild animals kept by travelling circuses is a clear indication the public appetite for this type of entertainment is not what it once was.

"The use of wild animals in travelling circuses contributes little to further our understanding of wild animals or their conservation.

"The introduction of this Bill sends a clear message this Government and the people of Wales believe this practice to be outdated and ethically unacceptable."

Wild

The Government said only two circuses travel the UK with wild animals, but there were "renewed calls" to ban the practice when they visited the country.

It added similar legislation exists in Scotland and the Republic of Ireland and will be introduced in England from 2020.

Head of animal welfare and captivity at Born Free Dr Chris Draper said: "The use of wild animals in travelling circuses is outdated and unpopular, and this legislation will bring Wales into line with a long and increasing list of countries which have banned this practice.

"It also means that Great Britain may soon be free of circuses with wild animals."

This Author

Alexander Britton is a reporter with PA. 

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