The Zoo Run By Inmates


– I’m a city boy. I’m from New York. I’ve never seen a cow
or anything like that. But hanging out with an emu is pretty cool. Probably won’t have another opportunity like that for the rest of my life. (upbeat instrumental music) (bird chirping) – We are at the Monroe County
Sheriff’s Office Animal Farm on the grounds of the detention center. We have the capacity to have 700 inmates in all three of our jail facilities. This is the main jail, and we’re the only facility of this kind in the country that has
an exotic zoo at a jail. Ready for your corn? It started out with just farm animals, and now I have exotic
animals of all varieties. Kinkajous are from the rainforest of Central and South America. (bird chirping) That’s the bird we call
the I love you bird, and he is such a camera hog. We only take in animals
that have been abandoned, abused, confiscated, or donated. Hi Tucker. We don’t purchase any of the animals, and they’re here for their life, this is a forever home for them. – I’m in here just for a year, you know, and these guys are doing a life sentence. – Hi Moe. Alright Kramer. Did I wake you up pretty girl? Today I have four inmates. Every day they come down here
to feed, water, and clean and then to spend time with the animals. – What’s going on buddy? You’re going to get out pretty soon. Mandatory rec. – The farm is one of the
jobs in this facility that you can actually be outside all day and number two get to interact with a bunch of rare cool
animals like Kramer here. He’s got the little curl
on the top of his head. That’s why we call him Kramer. – This is Eeyore. He was saved from a slaughter house, and he’s a lot better off. – [Interviewer] Do you
think working with animals helps with their rehabilitation. – [Jeanne] I’ve seen a lot
of very positive changes. I’ve seen people that come down here and are completely scared of animals and by the end of their time here, many of them bring their families back to actually show them what they were doing when they were incarcerated. – I’m so happy to be out here. When I first came here,
he was like not even this big. Tiny and now look at you. (laughs)

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