Chico The Lone Meerkat At the Los Angeles Zoo

  • by: The ChicoProject
  • recipient: To improve conditions for Meerkats at Los Angeles Zoo
Chico now has a buddy named Barky as of February 24th, 2009.  Please see the youtube video below. Congratulations little ones. May you live long and healthy lives. Thank you to everyone who supported the Chico Project and signed the petition. Thank you, L.A. Zoo and Virginia Zoo for Barky. AND to the North Carolina Zoo for bringing in 4 more meerkats. There are now 2 meerkat exhibits at the L.A. Zoo. Happy Meerkat days are here again as there is a new L.A. Manor. Here is the link to the video with Chico and introducing Barky.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssO-HshhcUc  
Thank you,The Chico Project 

Chico is a lone Meerkat at the Los Angeles Zoo. His burrowmate, Spanky, passed away last December, 2007. Chico has been in solitary confinement for over a year and the zoo has not provided him with the companionship he needs and deserves. Many overtures have been made to the zoo to improve Chico's living conditions but have been met with bureaucratic smoke and mirrors. The zoo is a department of the city. 

Meerkats live successfully in groups and thrive in an environment that has sufficient food and companionship. All zoos are aware of this. Chico is fed kibble dog food and is overweight. This is appalling and the zoo is not meeting the needs of this animal.  He will be nine years old this year. Meerkats have been known to live up to 17 years in captivity in groups with a proper diet.
 
We are hoping to make everyone aware of his case and help us improve his conditions or transfer him to a zoo that is more aware of the meerkat needs.        
As of 2/18, your efforts to help Chico have made a difference. His diet has been improved and he has lost weight.  The zoo has brought in 4 meerkats who are in quarantine. This petition will stay alive until we can report to you the kats are enjoying the comforts of their new home.

Youtube videos with Chico and children at the L.A. Zoo      
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJzgNw_9n2s

 Chico has received newspaper and TV attention in the last few days. We have created an email for media contact for comments about Chico.  
                                 Meerkats@verizon.net

Please enjoy these two youtube videos for Chico: 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zT8X5rrM9jk http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W0Qc6h9YRXI

 
This is a link to the LA Times arcticle on Chico
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-et-meerkat28-2008aug28,0,1659189.story

Please tell everyone to sign, we need to keep the pressure on the zoo
so, to contact the zoo call 323-644-4200
email the director @: john.lewis@lacity.org or jason.jacobs@lacity.org
We the undersigned" are asking you to improve the conditions of the Meerkat exhibit at the zoo. Chico is the lone Meerkat at thezoo afterhis burrowmate, Spanky, passed away in December, 2007.Meerkats aresocial animals and require companionship to survive.The time has come to enact changes, Chico has been in solitary confinement for eight months. We are asking you to help now. Arrange for moreMeerkats to be added to the exhibit or transfer Chico to a zoo that offers him the life and companionship that he deserves.
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