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Luján Zoo in Buenos Aires closes under complaints and controversies

After years of denunciations and controversies, the Argentine government closed the Luján Zooone of the Buenos Aires tourist attractions most wanted by Brazilians (unfortunately!). About 70% of the audience who visited the place was from Brazil.

The great demand for this tour, even though the zoo was located more than 65km from the Argentine capital, had as its main attraction the possibility of visitors pose for photos and even breastfeed cats in their cages.

Photo: Blumurch (CC BY 2.5)

The fact that wild animals are usually sleepy has always raised discussions about mistreatment and even that they were drugged. After numerous complaints and under strong pressure, the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development of Argentina closed the site in September.

Luján Zoo is closed on complaints
Luján Zoo is closed (Photo: Gov. Argentina)

According to the government, this occurred in response to violations of the establishment “for not having authorization, not presenting a reconversion plan, for inconsistencies in the faunal herd, for the crossing of species and for allowing contact between visitors and animals”.

Now the administration must transform the site into a traditional zoo so that it can reopen.


In operation for more than two decades, the Luján Zoo has become the target of complaints in recent years, both from environmentalists, NGOs and even from the visitors themselves.

Photos with the animals, often accused of being sedated, were the most popular attraction of the visit that cost around BRL 100. You’ve probably seen at least one of them on the social networks of a friend who traveled there.

Tourist poses with tigers for photos
Photo: Gabriel Juan (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Closed by the pandemic, the zoo has been under severe pressure in recent months after images circulated on social media with animals allegedly mistreated, without food and abandoned. The complaints reached the City Hall of Luján, including photos of dead animals piled up.

Inspectors in front of the Luján Zoo
Inspectors in front of the Luján Zoo (Photo: Gov. Argentina)

Although the cats were the main attraction, the Luján Zoo had about 300 animals of different species, such as elephants, camels, among others. Now the government of Argentina intends to transform the site into an ecoparkwithout activities that allow direct contact between humans and animals.

*With information from the Argentine government, Clarin and Nossa

Rafael Carvalho

A fan of chicken with okra and a good beer from Minas Gerais, he currently lives in São Paulo. He has a degree in Radio and TV, a postgraduate degree in Journalism and has been working with Digital Content for over 16 years. He has worked for companies such as SBT and Jovem Pan FM. Passionate about travel, he founded Esse Mundo É Nosso and travels around Brazil and the world all year round, always looking for tips to share.

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