WWF-Pakistan is highly concerned about the condition of the Himalayan brown bear kept at Islamabad Zoo. We also demand that the bear is immediately placed in a quarantine facility and should be provided with the best veterinary care.
WWF primarily focuses its work on in-situ conservation of species, i.e., in their natural habitat. However, we view zoos (often considered ex-situ) as important facilities for public education an awareness about biodiversity and conservation. But also WWF strongly believes that zoo animals should have better welfare standards and promote a positive image among the visitors.
There are numerous examples where zoos have supported conservation of endangered species and brought them back from the brink of extinction. We understand that there are many animal welfare issues in captive facilities in Pakistan, WWF-Pakistan is trying to help zoos by lobbying for zoo standards and legislation, promoting cooperation and capacity building for an overall improved environment for the animals. Courts in Pakistan have been approached for such improvements and WWF-Pakistan is already involved in both Lahore and Islamabad High Courts cases to improve the Zoo situation.
WWF regards compliance with national, regional and local legislation and regulations and adherence to the provisions of the Code of Ethics and Animal Welfare standards of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) and World Zoo Conservation Strategy, as a minimum standard of conduct for captive animals.