This is not a zoo. A temporary animal housing facility maybe, but zoo? no way. And as far as endangered species conservation is concerned, Zoo Melaka is a mockery.
I went to this zoo last week with my 2 year old son and wife, hoping to see the same zoo that got my respect and praise for the effort in species diversity. Back in 2008, the mini safari was full of giraffes and zebra and ostriches. The aviary was full of different bird species and the elephants were lively. Sadly now in 2013 the zoo has literally gone to the dogs.
What did I see?
1.) Miniature ponies near the rhino enclosure ; missing.
2.) Rhinos still there but very thin, and accompanied by 2 wildebeest who were equally emaciated
3.) 2 capybara in an enclosure resembling more of tropical wasteland than a lush rainforest.
4.) 2 tapir in muddy overgrown enclosures that are wearing down at the masonry.
5.) Sumateran rhinos; Missing
6.) Walk in enclosure that once housed ring tailed lemurs and flying foxes, closed and broken down. The red panda was also missing, probably dead.
7.) Plenty of deer though, and African cattle species.
8.) 1 solitary seladang, in and enclosure that once housed 2 of them comfortably.
9.) 1 half drunk (or was it half dead) chimp .
10.) 1 dejected looking orang utan
11.) A coupled of bald mandrills.
12.) Some gibbons swinging around , couldn't see them much though coz the monkey island was not maintained and overgrown.
13.) 2 dirty ostriches that could do with a good cleanup. It's funny, coz I am very sure they are suppose to have feathers at their hind ends. The Melaka zoo versions don't. And their plumage distinctly looks non African. Maybe a new Melaka species?
14 .) Some emus from Australia also missing feathers.
15.) Plenty of storks you can actually see in rice paddies here in Melaka. No need to pay RM10 to see them
16.) A tortoise garden with more garden then tortoises.
17.) Malayan wild dog, now I didn't know we had them. But the one in this zoo looked more like a stray mongrel.
18.) The aviary housed 1 sickly looking maribou stork, and some white pigeon like birds, no more crowned cranes, spoonbill storks or even the mandarin ducks that used to paddle in the pond.
19.) Mousedeer enclosure with 1 solitary inmate, in 2008 there were at least 10. The other inmates were some Indian barking deer. The lyre birds were gone.
20.) Of course they tried something new, a walk in peacock enclosure with 2 peacocks just sitting there watching you as you watch them.
21.) Otters, that thankfully showed the most life among all the other animals there.
22.) Tigers that were mostly sleeping,
23.) 1 poor african lion suffering from heatstroke.
24.) 2 black leopards in an enclosure that's dark and gloomy
25.) Another leapord in and enclosure with no foliage.
26.) 1 solitary clouded leopard.
27.) The mini safari where you once could walk side by side with a giraffe also closed and broken down.
28 .) Giraffe enclosure with 2 of them, in 2008 there were at least 6 with 2 in the enclosure and 4 in the mini safari
This are most of the animals in the zoo. The facility boasts over a 100 animals. Obviously they flunked their basic math, because what I saw doesn't even come close. Maybe they are counting the wild macaques that are running rampant in the zoo grounds too. There is truth in the news reports that at least 230 animals had gone missing from zoo melaka.
Overall, this has to be one of the worst examples of animal welfare in Malaysia. No enrichment is going on to improve the quality of the animals lives in captivity. And what's more there's nothing in this zoo that educates its visitors about the animals. Forget about learning anything here. The enclosures are close to breaking down. Open concept? Wide open to roam free is more like it. And something has to be said about the overall layout if the zoo. The walking paths are a natural hazard for one to twist an ankle or maybe even trip and fall flat. You got trees growing in the middle of the walkway!
If you have young kids, don't bring them here, coz you don't want to have your strollers getting stuck of and on in potholes and sinkholes. I brought mine and I had to bite my tongue to keep from cursing a blue streak in front of my toddler.
The amenities for visitors are barely basic , you have ice cream and cold drinks, but forget about having a main meal here. There is nothing savoury here. Just plenty of local stalls selling local snacks. For the brave , you might try at your own risks.
The only saving grace would be the animal show. Of course to get up close with the animals you got to fork out RM 10 each time. Not worth it for me after seeing the overall deterioration of
I don't know why people even bother to drive all the way here. Maybe they , like me , were hoping to see the same zoo that we knew back in our early years. Unfortunately the reality is we were all conned out of RM 10. I hate to say it, being a Melaka native myself, but Zoo Melaka should not be labeled as a tourist attraction the way it is now. Anyone who is keen naturalist or even an animal lover will just find this place a affront and a disgrace.
Someone once claimed that in 2 years time , somewhere in 2015, zoo melaka would be on par with Singapore Zoo. Well dream on mate. I think even in 10 years, it wouldn't come close. Not unless the zoo management gets its act together and starts benchmarking better zoos.
Somehow after seeing how the zoo is currently run, even that would be asking too much. Zoo Melaka would be better off shut down and the animals donated to better zoos like Taiping Zoo.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.