Chimpanzee at Johor Zoo drinks from Coke bottle as visitors throw in food and drinks

A chimpanzee at the Johor Zoo drinking from a Coke bottle thrown into its enclosure by a visitor. At its feet are other drink bottles thrown by other visitors.
A chimpanzee at the Johor Zoo drinking from a Coke bottle thrown into its enclosure by a visitor. At its feet are other drink bottles thrown by other visitors.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Although it is an offence to throw food or bottles into the enclosures of zoo animals, visitors to the Johor Zoo are giving in to the antics of the chimpanzees there that "coax" visitors into giving them food and cold drinks.

A retiree, who wanted to be known only as Ms Tan, said she and her family were visiting the zoo when they saw one of the three chimpanzees extending a hand to curious visitors.

"A visitor threw in a bottle of Coke and the animal bit it open and started drinking the Coke," she said, adding that there were also several other bottles inside the enclosure.

Ms Tan said that although it was an amusing sight, it was not right to feed or give anything to the animals as there were signs warning people not to throw things into the cages.

Zoo manager Zakaria Razali said irresponsible visitors, especially foreigners, often throw bottles, food and sometimes even stones and rocks into the cages.

"We have even turned away drunken people who want to come into the zoo with beer cans," he said, adding that animals have been injured after being struck by objects thrown at them.

He said the zoo's three chimpanzees were aged between 10 and 30 years.

"We always find people throwing bottles into the cages as they like the animals to be doing something or moving instead of just resting," he said, adding that the zookeepers often have to warn visitors not to feed the animals.

He said besides the chimpanzees, the other victims of such irresponsible acts were crocodiles, lions and tigers.