SNAKES ALIVE!

Originally posted on FUR OUT THE CLOSET::

Last Sunday I joined Ban Animal Trading’s (BAT) demonstration against the reptile expo. held at a local “events” centre.

In South Africa these reptiles are seen as exotic pets, as they often come from other countries.

This trade in exotic pets is unregulated.

These reptiles are bred in captivity or trapped in the wild and then sold by unscrupulous people.

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The fashion industries also exploits reptiles:

Every year millions of reptiles are farmed or hunted only to be skinned for fashion items.

According to Occupy for Animals,

Python shoes, boots, belts, jackets and skirts are being fashioned from snakes’ skin and items made from exotic skins come with a high price – and that it’s paid by the animals who are torn away from their jungle homes and cruelly killed; this illicit trade can even have terrible consequences for fragile eco-systems around the world.

Snakes killed for their skin are often…

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Taconite Tommy Throws a Hissy Fit and Science Itself Must Pay

Originally posted on Our Wisconsin, Our Wildlife:

Photo via Wikimedia Commons. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Throughout human history politicians have always used their positions and influence to punish rivals or further their agendas. This is nothing new but in Wisconsin it always has to be taken to more and more lofty extremes to the point of punishing the foundation of science itself.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about how Wisconsin just had to one up the assholes of the nation by sending out lay off notices to 57 Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources employees on Earth Day. These were not just any employees but those that belonged to the science division of the agency. While the anti-science stance of the anti-environment, anti-wolf, anti-everything labeled “progressive” or “liberal,” Walker Administration should not come as a surprise the petty reasons behind these latest cuts are truly disturbing.

According to a news article published today the root of the DNR science cuts…

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Extinction of your favorite animal more real than you realize

Extinction of your favorite animal more real than you realize

This week a study published in Science Advances has suggested that the extinction of some of the world’s most beloved animals is a clear and present danger. Fourty-four of the 74 largest terrestrial herbivores are now threatened with extinction, 12 of them “critically endangered” or extinct in the wild. Many of the species in decline, suggests the study, “are poorly known scientifically, and [are] badly in need of basic ecological research.” Not only will they die unless we do something, we’ll never know what they are all about in the first place.

Below you’ll see a set of two maps. The map at the top shows areas where large herbivore species exist. The cool colors show places where large herbivores exist, but only a handful of species.

The warmer the color, the more species of large herbivore exist.

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The second map shows where large herbivores are threatened. Save South America, most areas with very few large herbivore species seem to be less threatened.

The following species are currently threatened:
• African elephant (VU)
• Asian elephant (EN)
• Hippopotamus (VU)
• Pygmy hippopotamus (EN)
• Eastern gorilla (EN)
• Western gorilla (EN)
• Malayan tapir (VU)
• Baird’s tapir (EN)
• Lowland tapir (VU)
• Mountain tapir (EN)
• Philippine warty pig (VU)
• Oliver’s warty pig (EN)
• Visayan warty pig (CR)
• Palawan bearded pig (VU)
• Bearded pig (VU)
• Indian rhinoceros (CR)
• Javan rhinoceros (CR)
• Sumatran rhinoceros (CR)
• Black rhinoceros (CR)
• Grevy’s zebra (EN)
• Mountain zebra (VU)
• African wild ass (CR)
• Przewalski’s horse (EN)
• Asiatic wild ass (CR)
• Sambar (VU)
• Barasingha (VU)
• Père David’s deer (EW)
• White-lipped deer (VU)
• Bactrian camel (CR)
• Indian water buffalo (EN)
• Gaur (VU)
• Kouprey (CR)
• European bison (VU)
• Wild yak (VU)
• Banteng (EN)
• Takin (VU)
• Lowland anoa (EN)
• Tamaraw (CR)
• Mountain nyala (EN)
• Scimitar-horned oryx (EW)
• Mountain anoa (EN)
• Sumatran serow (VU)
• Walia ibex (EN)

This study shows three of the best-known species whose populations are contracting as we speak. These herbivores are the African Elephant, the Common Hippopotamus (not common for long), and the Black Rhinoceros.

F3.large

The most recent range polygons for the rhino are not shown here because of “recent poaching pressure.”

The change in population and possibility of extinction in all of these areas is due largely to one (or more) of four elements. Exploitation (hunting), Livestock (problems therein), Land-use change, and Conflict – as in Civil Unrest between warring human factions.

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Above you’ll see the percentages of large herbivore species threatened based on these four major threat categories.

NOTE: The total here adds up to more than 100% because each large herbivore may have more than one existing threat.

Photo Credits: Elephant and hippopotamus (K. Everatt), rhinoceros (G. Kerley).

You can see the full study in Science Advances 01 May 2015: Vol. 1, no. 4, e1400103. Code DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1400103. Authored by William J. Ripple, Thomas M. Newsome, Christopher Wolf, Rodolfo Dirzo, Kristoffer T. Everatt, Mauro Galetti, Matt W. Hayward, Graham I. H. Kerley, Taal Levi, Peter A. Lindsey, David W. Macdonald, Yadvinder Malhi, Luke E. Painter, Christopher J. Sandom, John Terborgh, and Blaire Van Valkenburgh.

The title of the paper this information comes from is “Collapse of the world’s largest herbivores”. This paper is available now for further review – again, from Science Advances.

Airline Takes On Big Game Hunters to Protect Rhinos, Lions, and Elephants

Africa’s largest airline bans the shipment of endangered animal trophies on its flights.


An elephant head with ivory tusks and other hunting trophies in a taxidermy store in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. (Photo: Robert Caputo/Getty Images)

April 30, 2015

Taylor Hill is TakePart’s associate environment and wildlife editor.

It just got harder for big game hunters to bring endangered animal trophies back home from South Africa to hang on their wall.

That’s because South African Airways, the continent’s largest airline, has banned the transport of endangered rhinos, elephants, and lions aboard its passenger and cargo flights.

“SAA will no longer support game hunters by carrying their trophies back to their country of origin,” SAA country manager Tim Clyde-Smith told the South African media on Wednesday. “The vast majority of tourists visit Africa in particular to witness the wonderful wildlife that remains. We consider it our duty to work to ensure this is preserved for future generations and that we deter activity that puts this wonderful resource in danger.”

The news broke April 25, when the Professional Hunters Association of South Africa posted internal documents from SAA revealing its embargo plans. The airline then issued a statement announcing that the embargo had gone into effect April 21 on all of its flights. No exceptions will be made, even if the hunter holds a valid permit “issued by the relevant authorities” to transport the animal, the airline said.

SAA spokesperson Tlali Tlali said in an email that a recent incident influenced the airline to establish the embargo. “Early in April 2015, a shipment lodged as machinery spare parts was discovered in Australia whilst in transit to Kuala Lumpur. The shipment contained elephant tusks and was seized. We were issued with a notice of seizure.”

“We recognize that this decision could impact several stakeholders,” Tlali added. “SAA Cargo remains committed to playing a significant role in curbing the illegal transportation of all animal species while positively contributing to national and international conservation efforts.”

Conservation groups are touting the move as a step in the right direction, helping curb the hunting of Africa’s endangered animals and limiting options for illegal wildlife traffickers who might otherwise transport wildlife products under the guise that the goods were obtained via legal hunts.

“We see this as a bold and positive move on South African Airways’ part to limit human-induced mortalities,” said African Wildlife Foundation spokesperson Kathleen Garrigan. “It’s especially impactful given that [SAA] services a major sport-hunting destination.”

With SAA taking the first step, the question is whether other international airlines will follow suit. Delta Airlines, the only U.S.-based airline with direct flights to South Africa, did not immediately respond to a request for comment regarding SAA’s embargo.

If other airlines jump on board, trophy hunting might not be so appealing to big game hunters if they can’t bring evidence of their kills home. American hunters are already facing restrictions on what African animals they can go after.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife officials banned ivory trophy imports from Tanzania and Zimbabwe last year and are considering listing the African elephant as an endangered species—which would effectively ban all ivory trophy and elephant skin imports from legal hunts.

“This move will likely not deter hunters from hunting, but it may deter them from choosing South Africa as a destination for sport hunting,” Garrigan said.

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Also see:  With conditions: Carolinas regulators approve first federal permits for offshore oil surveys

http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2015/05/04/with-conditions-carolinas-regulators-approve-first-federal-permits-for-offshore/

Tell Craigslist to end ivory sales on its sites!

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Jobs, used bikes, apartments, ivory trinkets. They’re all available on Craigslist, but only one comes from the gruesome slaughter of elephants.
But here’s the thing: Craigslist’s own policy prohibits the sale of animal parts, including ivory on its sites. And yet, right now, the sale of ivory is rampant on Craigslist. Do they know that all ivory comes from dead elephants?
Craigslist’s policy is humane and simply the right thing to do. But they need to follow through and enforce their own rules.
We just conducted a joint investigation with our friends at the International Fund for Animal Welfare and what we found was shocking. A sample of Craigslist sites in cities both large and small yielded hundreds of postings for ivory – valued at well over one million dollars! And this was only examining a small percentage of what is available on the 420 sub-sites that make up Craigslist.
We’ve sent multiple letters to Craigslist leadership drawing attention to this issue. They have taken a first step by explicitly adding ivory to their list of prohibited items.
It’s a start, but we need them to take it further and enforce the rules.
So now we’re turning to you, our elephant-lovers (and many Craigslist users!), to help turn up the heat.
To be clear, what Craigslist is doing isn’t illegal. Many of the listings say that the ivory is antique, imported to the U.S. before the bans in the 1970s and 1980s and in compliance with state and federal law. But they offer no documentation proving this authenticity, and it’s incredibly difficult to tell the difference between ivory that’s decades old and ivory that came from an elephant poached 6 months ago. Even experts can be duped.
That’s exactly why eliminating all ivory sales is necessary. If we’re going to save African forest elephants from extinction, we need to drive down demand for ivory. That means enacting bans on the federal and state levels and then securing the resources to enforce those bans. Persuading corporations to enact and enforce their own bans is another critical piece of the puzzle.
Craigslist is one of the most popular online classified companies in the world. Taking a stand for elephants would be a huge step forward on this issue and make it easier for other companies to follow in their footsteps.
Together, we can win this! We’ve helped enact bans in New York and New Jersey. We convinced PBS’s Antiques Roadshow to stop appraising ivory on-air. Here’s to the next big win.
Sincerely,
John F Calvelli
John F. Calvelli
Executive Vice President for Public Affairs
Wildlife Conservation Society
Director, 96 Elephants

Sunshine and Slaughter: Finding a missing pet

Originally posted on Our Compass:

Source Sunshine and Slaughter
April 12, 2015

In February, I saw a shocking Instagram post from a person I follow. Her dog walker lost her dog. Sugar is still missing, and not a day goes by when I don’t think about her. If you know anything or see her, go to her Facebook page.

More recently, a friend pointed me to a story with a happy ending. A couple who tracks lost dogs learned of a dog who needed help. He’d been spotted for months in a remote park near Mount Rainier. He was starving and afraid. No one could catch him. When Amanda and Dylan, the trackers, couldn’t lure him with food, they devised a new plan.

baby bear Lost, Found Pets of WA State

Amanda lay down on the ground. Amazingly, the dog approached. She whimpered. He lied down next to her. She gained his…

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Ricky Gervais Blasts Trophy Hunters…..

Originally posted on Howling For Justice:

Trophy hunting a giraffe_Random storydotorg

Ricky Gervais is having none of trophy hunters BS they like to throw around, to defend their indefensible behavior and blood lust by killing innocent animals for sport.

Keep it up Ricky, you have their number and the courage and platform to call them out. Trophy hunting is not a sport, its animal cruelty and should be banned worldwide.

“These psycho trophy hunters always have stuff about their family being everything to them on their profiles. Elephants love their family  too.”…..Ricky Gervais Tweet April 18th 2015

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Ricky Gervais blasts trophy hunters trying to excuse ‘grim sport’ by saying they ‘provide a service’

 
Comedian has been embroiled in a debate over hunting
 Wednesday 22 April 2015

Ricky Gervais has condemned trophy hunters for “exploiting the needs of the poor” following a protracted debate over hunting sparked by the controversial activities of female huntress Rebecca Francis.

Francis had…

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4 Of 5 Stolen Pit Bull Puppies Recovered

Originally posted on CBS Minnesota:

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A fourth puppy has been recovered after a burglary last week. Now, only one remains missing.

A thief took a van belonging to Rescued Pets Are Wonderful from outside a home in St. Paul. Five little pit bulls were inside.

Someone dropped off two of them at a gas station in Hugo, another turned up in Oakdale and the fourth was recovered over the weekend.

There is a $750 reward for the safe return of the remaining puppy, which is a 5-week-old male. All of the dogs were microchipped before they were stolen.

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Wisconsin’s Obsession With Indoctrinating Children into the Killing Culture

Originally posted on Our Wisconsin, Our Wildlife:

Photo via Wikimedia Commons Photo via Wikimedia Commons

One of the biggest and most disturbing fallacies that “outdoors” writers for newspapers and “fish and wildlife” departments like to perpetrate is the idea that the only way people can enjoy nature is to participate in the killing “sports.” With decreased participation in bloodsports also comes a decrease in the money generated that pays for the “fish and wildlife” agencies. This provides quite the conundrum for these agencies. They could make an effort to push for ecotourism and to get people outdoors to enjoy the wonders of nature. They could welcome participation and funding from non-killing or “silent” sports aficionados like hikers and wildlife watchers. But as usual the wildlife exploiting government agencies and their kill everything propaganda mouthpieces in the media choose to take a third path. They choose to extol the greatness of killing and work to indoctrinate youth into the bloodsports in an…

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More legal wrangling over uranium mine near Grand Canyon

Originally posted on Summit County Citizens Voice:

The confluence of Havasu Creek with the Colorado River (river mile 157) is a popular place for boaters to stop and admire the striking blue-green water of Havasu Creek. The turquoise color is caused by water with a high mineral content. At the point where the blue creek meets the turbid colorado river there often appears a definite break. NPS photo by Erin Whittaker. The confluence of Havasu Creek with the Colorado River (river mile 157) is a popular place for boaters to stop and admire the striking blue-green water of Havasu Creek. The turquoise color is caused by water with a high mineral content. At the point where the blue creek meets the turbid colorado river there often appears a definite break. NPS photo by Erin Whittaker.

Impacts to water quality, cultural resources at stake, as conservation groups seek new environmental study

Staff Report

FRISCO — A U.S. Forest Service decision to allow uranium mining near the Grand Canyon will be tested in court once again.

Conservation groups last week said they’ll appeal a lower court ruling that affirmed the agency’s decision on the mine, located about six miles from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

U.S. District Court Judge David Campbell last month said conservation groups and the Havasupai Tribe failed…

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