Russian circus cancels 'inhumane' fish-swallowing act
A Russian circus performer who swallows a live fish and then regurgitates it has been forced to cancel the act after cruelty complaints in Australia.
The Great Moscow Circus said the so-called "fountain act" had been shelved until further notice and when it reappears, live fish would not be used.
"(Live fish) have only been in the circus for about four or five weeks," circus general manager Greg Hall told national news agency AAP. "Live fish won't be used in the act (next time)," he added.
State authorities said "circuses operating in New South Wales must comply with prescribed standards for the welfare of animals", while animal rights activists were up in arms about the act.
"Circuses continue to claim that performing animal acts are educational," said Animals Australia executive director Glenys Oogjes.
"Far from educational, this was an inhumane and foolish act which reflected badly on the Moscow Circus."
© 2010 AFP