Carmel Magazine

Summer/Fall 2020

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Page 111 of 171

110 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S U M M E R / F A L L 2 0 2 0 special relationship with humans." Sammut has repeatedly asked his foes to meet with him, to come see the zoo they admonish, but none have taken him up on his offer. "They go out of their way to harass with- out due cause," he says. "These extremist activist groups give misinformation through a lack of information. It's like suggesting you've abused your children—you haven't—and yet you can't do anything about it. It's stomach wrenching." The 180-animals (60 species in all) are Sammut's children. He's hand-raised dozens of them, including Ed the hyena who rode shotgun in Sammut's truck until instincts kicked in and Ed wanted to eat his dad. Two tiger cubs, who loved their baby bottles and human cuddles back in 2012, are now full-grown big cats. Several ani- mals have colorful backgrounds. The serval, a "small African cat," was confiscated by the Fish and Game Department. An agent immediately called Sammut, knowing he'd provide the Some of the habitats enable guests to feel as though they are in the exhibit with the animal, as with the zoo's new alligator experience. The monkeys are given much needed attention by guests and zookeeper Justin Sammut.

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