PETA wants Lowry Park Zoo investigated

12/22/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday | Listen to this entire show:

Lex Salisbury resigned his position as president of Lowry Park Zoo last week after the zoo’s board asked for his resignation. It came on the heels of a Tampa audit that found Salisbury used resources and animals from the zoo for his own for-profit animal park called Safari Wild.

Over the weekend Salisbury resigned from another post, according to He and Lowry Park Zoo’s director of collections, Larry Killmar, resigned last week from the Zoological Association of America.

Now, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has joined the ranks of those criticizing Salisbury. Today Lisa Wathne, a captive animal specialist with PETA, wrote to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service urging them to see if the zoo has violated the Endangered Species Act.

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Seeking Excellence at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo

It is important not to let this issue "slip" from the public's focus. Lowry Park Zoo Deputy Directory Craig Pugh announced the return to "business" following the resignation of CEO Lex Salisbury. Tampa's Zoo Advocates began our efforts towards advocating for the welfare of our animal and human zoo friends long before the association between Lex Salisbury, Lowry Park Zoo and Safari Wild became known. Our initial focus was on other important issues of concern, such as: -Code 1 Animal Escapes, most unreported to the public. -Health Code Violations in the zoo's Food Services department. -USDA Animal Welfare Violations. -Security/Safety Risks of Visitors/Employees. -Unusually Excessive Employee Turnover Concerns. The above mentioned issues of concern continue to remain unresolved within our community's zoo. New leadership at the helm of our community's zoo will be critical towards restoring public/taxpayer trust. So too however is it imperative that the action/inaction of the Zoo's Executive Board of Directors be scrutinized to ensure that other issues of animal and human welfare concern be addressed. Tampa's Zoo Advocates will continue to strive towards seeking to advocate for excellence within our community's zoo. Respectfully, Jeff Kremer Tampa's Zoo Advocates