Another tragic death at Barcelona Zoo: Barus the tiger drowns

Spain, Barcelona

It was reported that on Friday 16 December, Barus, a male Sumatran tiger at Barcelona Zoo, fell into the water moat surrounding his exhibit and drowned.

It was reported that on Friday 16 December, Barus, a male Sumatran tiger at Barcelona Zoo, fell into the water moat surrounding his exhibit and drowned. The drowning was a consequence of an epileptic seizure. Barus was diagnosed in 2007 with epilepsy and has been suffering the condition for many years. Barus was unable to save himself because of the seizure, which occurred whilst he was submerged in water. Barcelona Zoo has reported that the zoo staff was unable to recover Barus in time to prevent his death.

This is not the first time that the animal had fallen into the moat because of a seizure, though on the other occasions, zoo staff was able to rescue him from the water. Animal Equality believes that this is further evidence of the suffering endured by animals incarcerated in zoos. During our recent investigation, we found animals at Barcelona Zoo experiencing great hardships as a result of captivity.

We are deeply concerned to report that Barcelona Zoo is now expecting to receive another tiger to replace Barus in a European Breeding Programme. His tragic death, therefore, means that another animal is subjected to a lifetime of confinement. Contrary to popular belief, zoos do not meet the animals’ most basic needs and keeping animals in them infringes upon on their right to freedom.