Stardust Circus has been forced to stop displaying the last lions and monkeys they were still using for ‘entertainment’ despite decades of public opposition.
Finally, in 2021, no circus in Australia will coerce these ‘exotic’ animals to perform in front of lights and crowds, and spend their lives travelling as part of a show.
The change was not voluntary on the part of the circus, but required because no insurance company contacted was willing to approve insuring the animals. Other animals including horses, dogs and goats will continue to be required to ‘perform’.
While the reason for the insurance companies’ decision hasn’t been made public, it comes after years of controversy for this ‘entertainment’ industry. Thousands of Australians have spoken out against keeping animals like lions and monkeys in circuses. The fact that Stardust was the last circus to display these ‘exotic’ animals in Australia indicates evolving societal expectations around the use of animals. These days, people are much more interested in watching amazing human performers — who choose to take centre stage — than they are seeing animals forced to perform such unnatural tricks.