Penguins exploited by London business
We’ve seen plans for cat cafés and owls in bars, now we have Queens Skate Dine and Bowl in West London promoting an ice skating event featuring live penguins.
I believe most fair-minded and compassionate people understand that live animals are not ours to use for entertainment and penguins do not belong inside a skating rink that doubles as a bar/restaurant in Central London.
The venue describes the event as follows:
To celebrate Penguin Awareness Day 2019, QUEENS will be making a donation to birdlife.org and we need your help! We feel that the best way to understand how wonderful these flightless birds are is, to get to meet them & their loving handlers – so we’ve invited a raft of penguins to join us on on SATURDAY 19TH JANUARY from 4pm till 8pm.
Penguins are amazingly adapatable creatures, some are at home on beaches of South-Africa and others rule over the Antarctic ice. We are excited to see them make QUEENS ice rink their home for the afternoon!
All profits going to birdlife.org – look at what amazing job they are doing.
Enough is enough of this bullshit.
Live animals do not belong inside entertainment venues, they do not belong in a London skating rink, and they deserve to not be used by a for-profit business as a form of greenwashing in order to get publicity.
How will be the penguins be displayed? The venue website states:
- The area the penguins will be situated, will a purpose made 20 metre x 4 metre insulated platfrom sitting atop of the ice.
- barriers will be around the the penguin at all time
- These animals are endangered in their natural habitat. The birds who will visit your educational encounter have a special CITES exemption that allows them to be exhibited.
- Being a highly intelligent animal, the penguin responds very positively to regular training. This provides good behaviour enrichment and reduces stress.
- There have been no recorded instances of stress in this company’s keeping of penguins.
- These birds are regularly inspected by specialist zoo vets.
- It is this company’s belief that exhibiting these fantastic animals in this way draws attention to their plight in the wild. They are the ambassadors for their wild cousins.
To suggest that the penguins will be guaranteed to not feel any sense of distress or upset as people skate around them is simply disingenuous. There is no way the organisers can know this.
To add insult to this flimsy attempt to claim these animals are being cared for in the name of entertainment, the on site restaurant at Queens features a menu filled with numerous animals including chickens, cows, and pigs.
The idea that the lanes are claiming penguin welfare as a priority while turning a profit from the death of other animals is hypocritical and completely diminishes their so-called concerns for looking after penguins.
Circuses and shows featuring live animals are rightfully becoming a thing of the past all over the planet as humans become more aware of the trauma associated with putting animals on display for entertainment.
Queens need to be dragged into 2019 by being reminded that raising money for penguins is not a good enough excuse to exploit them. Live animals are not entertainment, not even when it is in the name of fundraising.
You can ask Queens to reconsider hosting this event via their Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook accounts. You can see their page about the penguin event online here.
The venue has now cancelled this event as a result of public pressure. See their tweets below.