[Rerun] Bengt Holst 2: Perception of animals with the giraffe Marius, the panda and the Tasmanian devils
Zoos are no longer just a showcase for captive animals. The animals are part of breeding programs and research and are not just for decoration. This is a far cry from the past outlook on animals and animal ethics, when they were considered objects of entertainment. For many years, Bengt Holst has fought the Disneyfication (also called Disneyization, is a term which describes the transformation of something to resemble The Walt Disney Company's theme parks ) of animals and worked to make the animals fascinating enough in their own right, without the need to humanize them.
One of the greatest tests of that attitude to animal ethics and welfare was in 2014, when Bengt Holst defended the slaughter and autopsy of the giraffe Marius. Bengt tells the story to Jens Degett from Science Stories along with other stories about the panda, the Tasmanian devils, and whether it hurts the fish to be caught with a hook.
Bengt Holst worked at the Copenhagen Zoo since he graduated as a biologist in 1983. From 1994 - 2020 he was deputy director and scientific director. From 1993 -1999, Bengt Holst together with Joachim Jerrik, Jens Degett and later Jerk Langer participated in a weekly radio program (Studie 2000) about science on DR P1.
The podcast, which was recorded in 2020, is the second in a series on research and development in zoos. Bengt Holst retired shortly after the broadcast series was recorded.