An important vote that will forbid the use of animals in live circus performances starting in 2023 just occurred in France. In the past, tigers, lions, and bears have performed in circuses, but once the prohibition is in force, such displays will be prohibited.
Although the Republic on the Move (LREM) party referred to the ban as “a historic stride in the animal rights war,” some are debating whether it goes far enough because bullfighting will still be legal under the new regulation.
According to the policy, performances must end in two years and “circus” animal ownership must be outlawed after seven years. It also includes dolphin performances and mink husbandry, which were both forbidden right away, as protected animals. In two years, wild animal performances will be forbidden, and in seven years, their ownership will be as well.
The new legislation also increases penalties, with anyone convicted of animal abuse subject to fines of up to €75,000 ($85,000) and prison terms of up to five years.
Some, however, are not happy about the exclusion of controversial traditional activities like bullfighting and hunting, which are fiercely supported in some regions of the nation while being outlawed in others.
Following a similar choice made in Germany in 2017, the renowned Circus Roncalli of that nation replaced the real animals with spectacular holograms in 2018.