Oregon Zoo protesters picket Metro meeting

Oregon Zoo protesters picket Metro meeting

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by Nina Melhaf, KGW Staff

Bio | Email | Follow: @KGWNews

kgw.com

Posted on May 8, 2014 at 10:20 AM

Updated Thursday, May 8 at 12:39 PM

PORTLAND -- Animal rights activists protested about the Oregon Zoo's elephant program in a noon rally at Metro.

The group Free the Oregon Zoo Elephants claims the zoo's oldest and most famous elephant, Packy, along with the others, are living under poor conditions. The group wants 52-year-old Packy to live out the rest of his life at an elephant sanctuary.

Related: Protesters rally during zoo elephant celebration

FOZE also accuses Metro, the regional government agency that runs the zoo, of breaking its promise to build a larger, off-site habitat for elephants with a 2008 bond measure.

Construction is under way on a much larger enclosure for the elephants at the zoo. It will increase the exhibit's size from one acre to six acres. "Elephant Land" is slated to open October 2015.

The protest was scheduled to begin 12:30 p.m. at 600 NE Grand Ave. Afterward, activists planned to pack the Metro council meeting at 2 p.m. and give testimony on the lack of oversight for the $125 million zoo bond measure.

Background: Oregon Zoo moves forward on bond projects

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