Thailand Zoo Makes Chimpanzee Spray Coronavirus Disinfectant
A controversial zoo in Thailand has caused outrage after a chimpanzee was seen riding a bike while spraying coronavirus sanitizer.
Footage from the Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm and Zoo, on the outskirts of Bangkok, shows the chimp wearing a surgical face mask, denim shorts, and an orange Hawaiian shirt as it pedals a children’s bicycle with disinfectant tanks strapped to the back.
Campaigners described the footage as ‘heartbreaking’ according to The Daily Mail.
At around one minute into the video, the chimp, who is chained to a wooden block, can be seen pulling on a nappy before a zoo worker hands over the human clothes.
The video shows the chimp swerving around the zoo on a child’s bike as disinfectant sprays out of the tank at the back.
A zoo worker jogs alongside the wobbling bike while holding a lead chained to the chimp, as it struggles to maintain its balance.
Towards the end of the video, the zoo worker encourages the chimp to applaud its work.
Zoo director Uthen Yangpraphakorn claimed the chimp was used to help clean the zoo in preparation for its re-opening once the government lifts coronavirus lockdown measures. In his words:
We have been closed since the government orders about the virus, so in the meantime, we do not have much to do. We clean the place two or three times a week in case the government will allow us to re-open, so we are ready to start accepting visitors again. The chimp was also trained in the farm so we just brought him out to let him stretch his limbs during this inactive period.
However, the animal rights group PETA described the treatment as ‘heartbreaking’ and said the zoo as a ‘hell hole’.