This paragraph about the horrific situation brought tears to my eyes: "Marius -- a doe-eyed, perfectly healthy, 18-month-old giraffe -- has been munching in his stall, blissfully unaware that he is about to face his executioner on Sunday, says the BBC's Malcolm Brabant in Copenhagen." Marius will be killed using a bolt gun because a lethal injection would contaminate his meat and he is to be served up to tigers and other carnivores after he is dissected. So, one might argue that Marius will not go to waste, but this is a lame excuse for thoroughly unjustified and unnecessary murder, if you will. I realize that the word "murder" is reserved for human beings but perhaps it's time to use it for such heinous acts as killing healthy nonhuman animals in zoos (and in other venues).
First do no harm: Compassionate conservation notes that the life of every single individual matters
Marius is a healthy sentient being and should not be killed as if he is a disposable unfeeling and object. Compassionate conservation (see also) asks us to reflect on the fact that the life of every single individual matters and that no animals should be harmed or killed because they don't fit into a breeding or conservation program. Thoroughly disregarding Marius being alive and well, Bengt Holst, scientific director at the zoo, said, "Marius's genes were already well represented among giraffes at the zoo", as if this justifies killing him. Would you kill your companion dog or another dog (for example) if their genes were already represented in other dogs (which of course they are)? Marius and other caged animals are not objects to be killed when they are no longer needed. They are sentient beings who deserve to live out their lives free of harm in peace and safety and with dignity. Shame on the Copenhagen Zoo.