The second giraffe would be killed for the same reason as the first: because both zoos belong to the same breeding program, and they don’t want too many animals with the same genetic make-up.
Strangely, the giraffe in question shares the same name as the first — Marius.
Even more coincidentally, the second Marius’ companion at the Jyllands Park Zoo is the first Marius’ older brother.
If the zoo acquires a female to breed with the first Marius’s older brother (more genetically valuable), then it would likely euthanize the second Marius.
“We can’t have two males and one female. Then there will be fights,” zoo keeper Janni Lojtved Poulsen told the Telegraph.
Despite global outcry over the first giraffe’s euthanization, the Jyllands Park Zoo maintains it will do the right thing.
“Many places abroad where they do not do this, the animals live under poor conditions, and they are not allowed to breed either. We don’t think that’s OK,” Poulsen explained.
When defending the first Marius death, Bengt Holst, scientific director at the Copenhagen Zoo, explained the decision benefitted the greater good of the giraffe population.
“Our giraffes are part of an international breeding program, which has a purpose of ensuring a sound and healthy population of giraffes,” he said. “It can only be done by matching the genetic composition of the various animals with the available space.”
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