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Stardust Circus a success despite cruelty claims

By DIANA BUSHBY
PROTESTS against animal cruelty didn’t stop people from attending the Stardust Circus in Queanbeyan.

The circus’s recent performance at Queanbeyan showground attracted criticism over the use of exotic animals such as lions and monkeys.

But Stardust Circus owner Jan Lennon said the experience of a traditional circus is what attracted people.

“It ended up being very successful, we can’t complain,” she said. “Obviously people wanted to see the circus with the animals as it turns out.”

Exotic circus animals are banned in the ACT, but Mrs Lennon said the majority of patrons had come from across the border.

“I drove around every night and had a look and the majority of number plates were ACT….ACT outweighed the NSW” Mrs Lennon said.

Animal Liberation ACT staged a protest against the circus to highlight the ill treatment of circus animals. “Circuses with these exotic species are banned from performing in the ACT, just over the border, because it is considered to be cruel,” Jo Morgan, the president of Animal Liberation ACT, said.

Mrs Morgan says the animals are forced to live in temporary cages and enclosures that are small and dull.

“The animals are prevented from carrying out their natural behaviour that evolved over millions of years,” Mrs Morgan said. “They are forced to perform whether they want to or not.”

But Mrs Lennon said the animals were very well looked after calling the accusations “rubbish”.

“We have lions and they are very lazy animals,” she said. “They sleep about 20 hours a day they don’t have to hunt for food it’s laid on them. There is no problem there. The five minutes they do on the show is their exercise…. They are not particularly over worked”

Across Australia 40 local councils have banned circuses with exotic animals and Mrs Morgan hopes Queanbeyan Council will ban the circus.

“The council definitely has a role to play in animal welfare and that would be to help get these poor animals out of the circus,” she said.

Queanbeyan Council general manager Gary Chapman said that there had been no complaints from residents and would not ban the circus while the community continued to enjoy it.

Recent Comments

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I just drove past this cicus near Mordialloc, Victora and it made me cry seeing the lions in such a tiny enclusure near a main road. It is cruel, these animals have never known the life they were born to live, as free, wild animals just so soem greedy humans can exploit them to make money. Just because they are fed and cared for, it is cruelty. Of course these animals could never be set free now but they must never ever be replaced aith more wild animals. To Gary Freeman, some sick people woudl pay to go look at deformed humans in a cage and enjoy it - does that make it right?

Well "Concerned Resident of Queanbeyan" it looks like you should approach the Council and let them know of your concern (and rally as much support as you can) as they have said in the above article that there have been no complaints and will continue to allow it. The Council makes the decision to allow it or not.

When myself and friends went to the circus, it was shocking! I was appauled but the trainer hitting the lion on the nose with the metal rod. The lions obviously did not want to preform, and they were made to. They were also very thin for lions. The hooves on some animals were not trimmed as well as they could be, and just the overall treatment of the animals was not up to scratch. Queanbeyan council NEEDS to ban at the very least the treatment of the animals while they are in Queanbeyan. Or at least send a vet to look at them while they are here. Your Kindly, Concerned Resident of Queanbeyan.

My family loved the show particularly the lions, the relationship they have with their trainer was a real treat and all the animals are in beautiful condition, I certainly cannot agree with the knockers this circus is unique and real run by lovely talented people who love their life and their animals.To rob them of the life they love and children of this experience would be wrong. Lets talk about routine,these animals were born into this circus life, its all they know,their minds and their bodies are kept busy with training and performing and to then shove them into a zoo wouldnt that cause confusion and stress. I'm sure it would. People there is no "Free Willy" here its their lot in life I say leave them to it. Long live StarDust.

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