BERLIN, March 4 (UPI) — The German branch of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said a polar bear housed at the Berlin Zoo should be castrated to avoid breeding.
Frank Albrecht, the head of the PETA branch, said if Knut the polar bear is not castrated, the popular Berlin Zoo attraction could end up mating with a female polar bear on loan from the Munich Zoo, The Times of London said Thursday.
Albrecht said such breeding efforts would essentially represent an act of incest and could result in offspring suffering from genetic abnormalities.
“They have a common grandfather, Olaf, and they are therefore cousins,” he said.
“A long-term cohabitation between Giovanna and Knut is only feasible if Knut is castrated.”
The Times said it is likely Giovanna will return to the Munich Zoo before the two bears become sexually mature enough to procreate.
“We’ll send Giovanna back to Munich, by the autumn at the latest,” Berlin Zoo senior bearkeeper Heiner Klos said.
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