The Conservation Game

Where do all the animals from late-night TV go after their time in the spotlight?

Available on CBC Gem

The Conservation Game

The Passionate Eye

The Conservation Game tells the story of Tim Harrison, a retired cop and director of the non-profit Outreach for Animals, who makes a bombshell discovery while undercover at an exotic animal auction. The documentary follows Harrison as he begins to suspect that America’s top television celebrity conservationists — including Jack Hanna, Jarod Miller and Dave Salmoni — may be secretly connected to the exotic pet trade. What follows is a high-stakes game of cat and mouse, filled with lies, deception and coverups.

There are now more tigers living in captivity in the United States than there are wild tigers in their native ranges. The exotic animal market is a multimillion-dollar business that thrives in the shadows of pseudo-sanctuaries, roadside zoos and private menageries with little or no federal oversight.

At the same time, popular late-night and morning TV shows — from The Tonight Show Starring

Jimmy Fallon to Good Morning America — feature special guests, like endangered snow

leopards and tiger cubs, along with their celebrity wildlife experts to educate audiences

about endangered species and the natural world.

As Harrison’s investigation probes deeper into the secret world of the big cat trade, he and his team take their fight to the halls of U.S. Congress, pressing lawmakers to pass federal legislation that would end the private breeding and exploitation of these endangered animals.

Harrison sets out to discover where these animals actually come from — and what happens to them when the cameras turn off.

Watch The Conservation Game.