Bua Noi, a 33-year-old gorilla known as the “world’s loneliest,” is due to spend another Christmas in a cage. The animal was brought to Pata Zoo when she was only one year old and has remained locked up ever since. Talk about depressing!
- Bua Noi’s cage is directly over a supermarket. It’s a terrible life for any animal to live, but any efforts to free the world’s loneliest gorilla from her prison have been unsuccessful. Animal rights organizations and celebrities including Cher have campaigned for Bua Noi’s release over the years to no avail. The owner claimed he wanted more than $850,000 to let her go.
- The poor animal is experiencing “extreme psychological distress.” As PETA Asia’s Senior Vice President Jason Baker said in a statement, per The Sun: “PETA has offered multiple times to transfer her and all the other animals at Pata Zoo to reputable sanctuaries, where they would have trees to climb, grass to roll in, and other animals to socialize with. This shabby facility is internationally condemned as one of the worst zoos in the world. All the animals held captive there are confined to pitifully small, barren enclosures. [They are] denied sunshine, fresh air, and opportunities to exercise or engage in behavior that’s meaningful to them.”
- A 2019 report showed just how bad things are for Bua Noi. At that time, the gorilla was moving anxiously around her cage and even pulling her own hair out. There was also a video released showing her looking extremely depressed and bored. “Every animal at Pata Zoo is enduring a life sentence — something not handed to even the hardest Thai criminals — for simply being different to humans,” Baker said. “But they could have a meaningful life if they were transferred to a facility that would provide the mental stimulation and physical comfort of the naturalistic environment they need.”
- There is no excuse for treating animals this way. The “world’s loneliest gorilla” should not exist. Bua Noi should not be imprisoned for the “enjoyment” of others. (Although it’s hard to imagine anyone feeling joy at seeing an animal in distress.) This zoo should be shut down, as should every other facility that cruelly removes these animals from their natural habitats.