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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of wild animals and zoos from the real IELTS exam.

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Dave

IELTS Essay General Training: Wild Animals and Zoos

Some people believe that wild animals should not be kept in zoos or other man-made environments as there is no longer a need for them in the 21st century.

Do you agree or disagree?

Many believe that zoos are antiquated and inhumane. In my opinion, though zoos raise legitimate ethical concerns, their value for conservation is greater than ever before.

Critics of zoos argue that the animal life simulated there is unnatural. In the majority of zoos, animals are kept in small enclosures or cages. Any visitor to a zoo is first struck by the lack of energy and vitality present in animals not living in their natural habitats and fending for themselves. This unnatural divorce from their intended purpose in life is inherently unethical. Added to this is the fact that there are now alternatives to zoos. In countries such as Kenya and Tanzania, where the Serengeti is located, there are sprawling national preserves that accomplish the dual aims of aiding animal conservation and allowing interested spectators to see wildlife up close.

Nonetheless, zoos are principal locations for wildlife research and preservation initiatives. Nearly every zoo will not only allow local researchers to learn more about animals, but also contain programs for increasing population numbers. The hastening of climate change has brought disastrous results to animal habitats around the world and thousands of animals are now endangered. It is nearly impossible to quickly restore their homes so the only option remaining is to breed animals in captivity to increase their numbers and then release them into the wild later. This situation is unfortunate but necessary and will only become more essential in years to come as greater numbers of species are threatened and zoos become a key location for raising both public awareness and population levels.

In conclusion, despite the moral hazards zoos entail, their effect on wildlife conservation is crucial. Countries should therefore continue to maintain their current zoos.

Analysis

1. Many believe that zoos are antiquated and inhumane. 2. In my opinion, though zoos raise legitimate ethical concerns, their value for conservation is greater than ever before.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Critics of zoos argue that the animal life simulated there is unnatural. 2. In the majority of zoos, animals are kept in small enclosures or cages. 3. Any visitor to a zoo is first struck by the lack of energy and vitality present in animals not living in their natural habitats and fending for themselves. 4. This unnatural divorce from their intended purpose in life is inherently unethical. 5. Added to this is the fact that there are now alternatives to zoos. 6. In countries such as Kenya and Tanzania, where the Serengeti is located, there are sprawling national preserves that accomplish the dual aims of aiding animal conservation and allowing interested spectators to see wildlife up close.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific examples.
  4. Keep developing it fully.
  5. Stay focused on the same main idea.
  6. You can have some long sentences like this to really argue your point.

1. Nonetheless, zoos are principal locations for wildlife research and preservation initiatives. 2. Nearly every zoo will not only allow local researchers to learn more about animals, but also contain programs for increasing population numbers. 3. The hastening of climate change has brought disastrous results to animal habitats around the world and thousands of animals are now endangered. 4. It is nearly impossible to quickly restore their homes so the only option remaining is to breed animals in captivity to increase their numbers and then release them into the wild later. 5. This situation is unfortunate but necessary and will only become more essential in years to come as greater numbers of species are threatened and zoos become a key location for raising both public awareness and population levels.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your new main idea.
  3. Include specific details and examples.
  4. Continue developing it…
  5. as fully as possible!

1. In conclusion, despite the moral hazards zoos entail, their effect on wildlife conservation is crucial. 2. Countries should therefore continue to maintain their current zoos.

  1. Summarise your main ideas.
  2. Include a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean? Make some notes on paper to aid memory and then check below.

Many believe that zoos are antiquated and inhumane. In my opinion, though zoos raise legitimate ethical concerns, their value for conservation is greater than ever before.

Critics of zoos argue that the animal life simulated there is unnatural. In the majority of zoos, animals are kept in small enclosures or cages. Any visitor to a zoo is first struck by the lack of energy and vitality present in animals not living in their natural habitats and fending for themselves. This unnatural divorce from their intended purpose in life is inherently unethical. Added to this is the fact that there are now alternatives to zoos. In countries such as Kenya and Tanzania, where the Serengeti is located, there are sprawling national preserves that accomplish the dual aims of aiding animal conservation and allowing interested spectators to see wildlife up close.

Nonetheless, zoos are principal locations for wildlife research and preservation initiatives. Nearly every zoo will not only allow local researchers to learn more about animals, but also contain programs for increasing population numbers. The hastening of climate change has brought disastrous results to animal habitats around the world and thousands of animals are now endangered. It is nearly impossible to quickly restore their homes so the only option remaining is to breed animals in captivity to increase their numbers and then release them into the wild later. This situation is unfortunate but necessary and will only become more essential in years to come as greater numbers of species are threatened and zoos become a key location for raising both public awareness and population levels.

In conclusion, despite the moral hazards zoos entail, their effect on wildlife conservation is crucial. Countries should therefore continue to maintain their current zoos.

Answers

For extra practice, write an antonym (opposite word) on a piece of paper to help you remember the new vocabulary:

zoos places where animals are kept for people to look at

antiquated old and outdated

inhumane not ethical, moral

raise legitimate ethical concerns mention real moral issues

value consider important

conservation keeping safe and alive

greater than ever before more important than in the past

critics detractors

argue claim

simulated recreated

unnatural artificial

majority most of

kept remained

small enclosures cages, small spaces

cages metal bars around an animal

visitor guest

first struck notice initially

lack of energy lacking energy

vitality present in life contained in

natural habitats where animals are from

fending for themselves looking after itself

unnatural divorce artificial separation

intended purpose stated aim

inherently unethical immoral from the beginning

added to this is the fact that also

alternatives different options

Serengeti a really large preservation

sprawling national preserves large place for animals to live

accomplish achieve

dual aims two purposes

interested spectators audiences who want to go there

up close in person

nonetheless regardless

principal locations main places

wildlife research looking into animals

preservation initiatives attempts to save animals

local living nearby

contain programs have initiatives

increasing population numbers more and more animals

hastening speeding up

climate change global warming

brought disastrous results caused something really bad

endangered not many left

restore bring back to life

only option remaining no other choices

breed reproduce

in captivity in zoos

release them into the wild go back to their natural habitat

unfortunate not lucky

necessary needed

more essential really important

species types of animals

threatened at risk

key location important place

raising both public awareness and population levels increasing knowledge about animals and their numbers

despite regardless of

moral hazards ethical concerns

entail involve

crucial really important

continue to maintain keep up

current present day

Pronunciation

Practice saying the vocabulary below and use this tip about Google voice search:

zuːz 
ˈæntɪkweɪtɪd 
ˌɪnhju(ː)ˈmeɪn
reɪz lɪˈʤɪtɪmɪt ˈɛθɪkəl kənˈsɜːnz
ˈvæljuː 
ˌkɒnsə(ː)ˈveɪʃən 
ˈgreɪtə ðæn ˈɛvə bɪˈfɔː
ˈkrɪtɪks 
ˈɑːgjuː 
ˈsɪmjʊleɪtɪd 
ʌnˈnæʧrəl
məˈʤɒrɪti 
kɛpt 
smɔːl ɪnˈkləʊʒəz 
ˈkeɪʤɪz
ˈvɪzɪtə 
fɜːst strʌk 
læk ɒv ˈɛnəʤi 
vaɪˈtælɪti ˈprɛznt ɪn 
ˈnæʧrəl ˈhæbɪtæts 
ˈfɛndɪŋ fɔː ðəmˈsɛlvz
ʌnˈnæʧrəl dɪˈvɔːs 
ɪnˈtɛndɪd ˈpɜːpəs 
ɪnˈhɪərəntli ˌʌnˈɛθɪkəl
ˈædɪd tuː ðɪs ɪz ðə fækt ðæt 
ɔːlˈtɜːnətɪvz 
sɛrɪngɛti: 
ˈsprɔːlɪŋ ˈnæʃənl prɪˈzɜːvz 
əˈkɒmplɪʃ 
ˈdju(ː)əl eɪmz 
ˈɪntrɪstɪd spɛkˈteɪtəz 
ʌp kləʊs
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
ˈprɪnsəpəl ləʊˈkeɪʃənz 
ˈwaɪldlaɪf rɪˈsɜːʧ 
ˌprɛzə(ː)ˈveɪʃən ɪˈnɪʃɪətɪvz
ˈləʊkəl 
kənˈteɪn ˈprəʊgræmz 
ɪnˈkriːsɪŋ ˌpɒpjʊˈleɪʃən ˈnʌmbəz
ˈheɪsnɪŋ 
ˈklaɪmɪt ʧeɪnʤ 
brɔːt dɪˈzɑːstrəs rɪˈzʌlts 
ɪnˈdeɪnʤəd
rɪsˈtɔː 
ˈəʊnli ˈɒpʃən rɪˈmeɪnɪŋ 
briːd 
ɪn kæpˈtɪvɪti 
rɪˈliːs ðɛm ˈɪntuː ðə waɪld 
ʌnˈfɔːʧnɪt 
ˈnɛsɪsəri 
mɔːr ɪˈsɛnʃəl 
ˈspiːʃiːz 
ˈθrɛtnd 
kiː ləʊˈkeɪʃən 
ˈreɪzɪŋ bəʊθ ˈpʌblɪk əˈweənəs ænd ˌpɒpjʊˈleɪʃən ˈlɛvlz
dɪsˈpaɪt 
ˈmɒrəl ˈhæzədz 
ɪnˈteɪl
ˈkruːʃəl
kənˈtɪnju(ː) tuː meɪnˈteɪn 
ˈkʌrənt 

Vocabulary Practice

I recommend getting a pencil and piece of paper because that aids memory. Then write down the missing vocabulary from my sample answer in your notebook:

Many believe that z____s are a_____________d and i_____________e. In my opinion, though zoos r_____________________________s, their v_______e for c__________________n is g______________________________e.

C______s of zoos a_____e that the animal life s___________d there is u____________l. In the m_________y of zoos, animals are k____t in s________________s or c_______s. Any v_________r to a zoo is f____________k by the l_______________y and v_________________n animals not living in their n_________________s and f________________________s. This u____________________e from their i_________________e in life is i_______________________l. A_____________________________________t there are now a____________s to zoos. In countries such as Kenya and Tanzania, where the S___________i is located, there are s_________________________s that a_____________h the d_________s of aiding animal conservation and allowing i___________________s to see wildlife u_______e.

N______________s, zoos are p________________s for w_________________h and p__________________________s. Nearly every zoo will not only allow l______l researchers to learn more about animals, but also c__________________s for i_________________________________s. The h___________g of c_____________e has b_____________________________s to animal habitats around the world and thousands of animals are now e_____________d. It is nearly impossible to quickly r_________e their homes so the o_____________________g is to b______d animals i______________y to increase their numbers and then r________________________d later. This situation is u_______________e but n_____________y and will only become m_________________l in years to come as greater numbers of s__________s are t______________d and zoos become a k_____________n for r_________________________________________________s.

In conclusion, d_________e the m____________s zoos e________l, their effect on wildlife conservation is c__________l. Countries should therefore c_____________________n their c_________t zoos.

Listening Practice

Learn more about this topic in the video below and practice with these activities:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic and use these ideas to practice:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/02/zoos-time-shut-down-conservation-education-wild-animals

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Wildlife

  1. Have you ever seen a wild animal?
  2. What is your favourite wild animal?
  3. How do you feel when you see animals at the zoo?
  4. What is the importance of animals to children?

Writing Practice

Practice with the related IELTS essay topic below:

Some people think that resources should be spent on protecting wild animals, while others think those would be better used for the human population.

Discuss both sides and give your own opinion.


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