Too close for comfort? Theme park in China offers wild animals 'feeding tours'

Too close for comfort? Theme park in China offers wild animals 'feeding tours'
Tourists will be able to feed meat or live chicken to the lions and tigers, and even give apples to bears.
PHOTO: Facebook @CCTVNews

Talk about being too close for comfort. A theme park in Chongqing, China has created a sightseeing bus for tourists to feed wild animals.

It does not sound very novel - until the animals latch onto the cage of the bus with their paws, just inches away from the passengers.

Photos posted on CCTV news showed numerous lions and tigers surrounding the bus with their paws firmly gripped against the steel cages protecting the tourists.

Tourists will be able to feed meat or live chicken to the lions and tigers, and even give apples to bears.

According to Lianhe Wanbao, the animals, which are used to hunt in the African plains, have been reacting ferociously to these treats, throwing their weight against the steel cages in a bid to snatch the food.

"Tourists were visibly scared and shaken when the animals jumped to grab their meals, coming too close to the bus," CCTV wrote on their Facebook page.

Lianhe Wanbao reported that safety concerns have been flagged out by netizens, due to the appearance of the flimsy frame protecting the tourists.

Some netizens also said that the wild animals have grown accustomed to the vehicles, and may instinctively pounce on other vehicles that appear at the theme park, posing a risk for both animal and road users.

While this is no ride at the Serengeti, this is the closest one can get to an authentic safari experience.

grongloh@sph.com.sg

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