Groups threaten to sue unless feds reassess how salmon fishing harms orcas

 

FILE – In this Aug. 7, 2018, file photo, Southern Resident killer whale J50 and her mother, J16, swim off the west coast of Vancouver Island near Port Renfrew, B.C. The younger whale later died. (Brian Gisborne/Fisheries and Oceans Canada via AP, file)

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SEATTLE (AP) — Two conservation groups say the federal government is violating the Endangered Species Act by failing to consider how salmon fishing off the West Coast is affecting endangered killer whales.

The Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity and the Washington state-based Wild Fish Conservancy on Tuesday notified President Donald Trump’s administration that they intend to file a lawsuit within 60 days unless officials reevaluate whether the fishing further jeopardizes orcas that frequent the inland waters of the Pacific Northwest.

The population “southern resident” orcas is down to 74 — the lowest number in decades. No calf born in the last three years has survived as the orcas struggle with a dearth of their favored prey, chinook salmon, as well as pollution and vessel noise.

The conservation groups note that commercial and recreational fishing claimed more than 200,000 chinook off the Pacific Coast last year.

Deer hunter shot, killed on state-owned land in Bath Township

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting Blog

https://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/news/2018/11/17/police-death-animals-deer-hunting-firearms-stateofmichigan-departmentofnaturalresources-bathtownship/2038426002/

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BATH TWP. – A 67-year-old Lansing man is believed to have been shot and killed Friday night while hunting deer in Clinton County, township police said in a news release.

The death remains under investigation by police and the state Department of Natural Resources.

The county’s Central Dispatch Office received a “cardiac arrest/respiratory arrest call” at about 10 p.m. Friday, the news release said.

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When police and emergency responders arrived at an area of state land near the 8500 block of E. Clark Road, they found the man unresponsive. The area is approximately three miles east of the township’s downtown.

Preliminary investigation…

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RICKY GERVAIS RECEIVES AWARD FOR STANDING AGAINST TROPHY HUNTING

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting Blog

Ricky Gervais Receives Award for Standing Up Against Trophy Hunting
Freelance Journalist and Environmental Research Intern | Bristol, UK | Contactable via hello@livekindly.co

Vegetarian actor and comedian Ricky Gervais was recently awarded for standing up against trophy hunting by animal protection group The Humane Society International (HSI).

The Golden Globe and Emmy award-winning celeb received the first ever “Cecil Award,” which was created to commemorate Cecil, a well-known Zimbabwean lion killed in 2015 by an American trophy hunter. In a statement, The Humane Society’s U.S branch (HSUS) said the killing prompted a global furor against this senseless ‘sport’.”

The organization lauded Gervais as one of the “most prominent voices heard globally” on the issue. When the news of Cecil’s death went viral, the actor took to Twitter and shared with his millions of followers a picture of Cecil alive, and the words “I am struggling to imagine anything more beautiful than this.”

Since then, Gervais continued to…

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Dog loses leg after caught in trap, prompting renewed calls to ban trapping

Exposing the Big Game

WARNING: Some pictures in this story are graphic.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a hotly debated topic in New Mexico: whether or not to ban animal trapping. Now, a local rescue group is pushing for the ban after a lost pup barely escaped with his life.

When Argos Animal Rescue first found Kekoa, they didn’t think he would make it through the night. Now, after a miraculous recovery, he’s acting as their poster pup for change.

“Kekoa means warrior in Hawaiian,” said Kim Domina, Argos Dog Rescue founder. “Strength of a warrior and I think that’s what Kekoa is.”

A warrior who survived days with his leg caught in a steel trap.

“Officer Rico said that he was definitely caught in a leg-hold trap of some kind,” Domina explained. “And…

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Dog loses leg after caught in trap, prompting renewed calls to ban trapping

WARNING: Some pictures in this story are graphic.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a hotly debated topic in New Mexico: whether or not to ban animal trapping. Now, a local rescue group is pushing for the ban after a lost pup barely escaped with his life.

When Argos Animal Rescue first found Kekoa, they didn’t think he would make it through the night. Now, after a miraculous recovery, he’s acting as their poster pup for change.

“Kekoa means warrior in Hawaiian,” said Kim Domina, Argos Dog Rescue founder. “Strength of a warrior and I think that’s what Kekoa is.”

A warrior who survived days with his leg caught in a steel trap.

“Officer Rico said that he was definitely caught in a leg-hold trap of some kind,” Domina explained. “And that he probably was there for a couple days.”

On November 27, Argos Animal Rescue and K-9 Rehab got a call about the horrific conditions Valencia County Animal Control found Kekoa in.

“He tried to chew his own leg off. He does have pretty horrific injuries,” Domina said. “He had bite wounds all over his entire body. We ended up having to amputate his leg because it was fractured.”

Tracie Dulniak with the K-9 Rehab Institute says this type of injury is becoming more and more common.

“We get a lot of these dogs that are coming in from other counties and other states that have been severely abused or injured through traps,” Dulniak said.

This leaves the injured dogs with emotional, physical and mental scars, a concern that Trap Free New Mexico says should be addressed.

“We shouldn’t have to rely on New Mexican’s dogs stuck in traps until we abolish the practice,” said Christopher Smith, advocate for Trap Free New Mexico.

It is a practice that state legislators have tried to ban before, but has remained legal.

Current laws say a trap must be 25 feet or more from a trail and checked every day. The only possible changes coming to the law, at this point, is that Game and Fish is considering increasing the setback requirement to 50 feet.

“Minor tweaks to the regulations aren’t going to keep people safe,” Smith said. “It’s not going to keep many pets safe but also, it’s not going to keep our native wildlife safe.”

Kekoa’s medical bills have exceeded $3,000. Argos Rescue and K-9 Rehab are now asking for help with those bills and boarding and are searching for a skilled foster parent to care for him because no one has claimed him.

KRQE News 13 reached out to the New Mexico Trappers Association for comment, but did not hear back.

Prince Harry Is Skipping The Royal Boxing Day Hunt For Meghan Markle, According To Reports

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting Blog

You guys, can we just take a moment to reflect on the fact that 2018 is the year of stanning Prince Harry as #husbandgoals? Not only has he proved himself to be a pretty great Instagram hubby, but Prince Harry always has Meghan Markle’s back and isn’t scared to flout tradition to make his new wife happy. According to a report from the Sunday Mirror, Prince Harry is skipping the royal Boxing Day hunt for Markle once again, and it’s the sweetest gesture of solidarity. Elite Daily reached out to Kensington Palace for comment on the report, but did not hear back by the time of publication.

On Saturday, Dec. 15, the Sunday Mirror first circulated the report that the prince was opting out of the Christmas tradition this year due to Markle’s aversion to “blood sports.” The former Suits star…

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Hunting trip narrowly avoids tragedy

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting Blog

Hunting trip narrowly avoids tragedy

file photo

A hunting trip nearly had a tragic ending when a hunter accidentally shot his friend in the eye on Sunday near Liopetri.

The reportedly shot his 28-year-old friend, a resident of Liopetri, at 1.30pm while they were out hunting.

The wounded man was taken to Larnaca general hospital where he underwent hours of surgery.

According to an announcement, he is not in danger of losing his eye.

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Coyotes are interesting co-inhabitors – do you have any in your area?

Upper Dublin Deer

Injured Coyote and Altruistic Behavior by His Mate

Leg or paw injuries are very common in urban coyotes — I see them all the time. Most that I’ve seen are the result of dogs chasing them: legs get twisted, pulled, or even dislocated and broken as they try to get away in an urban environment.  I’ve also seen several instances of this resulting from coyote/coyote interactions.

Before I even knew that this coyote was injured, I watched his caring mate investigate the severity of the leg injury. Coyotes apparently investigate through their noses more than their eyes: she sniffed the leg intently. We’ve all seen our canine companions sniff each other to find out…

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Hunter who illegally killed hundreds of deer ordered to repeatedly watch ‘Bambi’

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting Blog

Of The Associated Press

A Missouri poacher has been ordered to repeatedly watch the movie “Bambi” as part of his sentence for illegally killing hundreds of deer.

The Springfield News-Leader reports that David Berry Jr. was ordered to watch the Disney classic at least once a month during his year-long jail sentence in what conservation agents are calling one of the largest deer poaching cases in state history.

Prosecutors say the deer were killed for their heads, with their bodies left to rot.

Berry was convicted in southwest Missouri’s Lawrence County of illegally taking wildlife. Three relatives and another man also were caught in connection to the poaching case. They’ve paid $51,000 in fines and court costs.

Berry also was sentenced to…

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PENGUIN POOP, SEEN FROM SPACE, TELLS OUR CLIMATE STORY

NICK GARBUTT/BARCROFT/GETTY IMAGES

SATELLITES WATCH MANY things as they orbit the Earth: hurricanes brewing in the Caribbean, tropical forests burning in the Amazon, even North Korean soldiers building missile launchers. But some researchers have found a new way to use satellites to figure out what penguins eat by capturing images of the animal’s poop deposits across Antarctica.

A group of scientists studying Adélie penguins and climate change have found that the color of penguin droppingsindicates whether the animals ate shrimp-like krill (reddish orange) or silverfish (blue). The distinction is interesting because the penguin’s diet serves as an indicator of the response of the marine ecosystem to climate change. Separate research is starting to show, for example, that penguin chicks that are forced to rely on krill as their main source of food don’t grow as much as those who have fish in their diet.

The penguins’ guano deposits build up over time on the rocky outcroppings where the birds congregate, making them colorful landmarks. The researchers took samples from the penguin colonies, found their spectral wavelength, then matched this color to images taken from the orbiting Landsat-7 satellite.

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“There’s a clear regional difference, krill on the west, fish on the east,” says Casey Youngflesh, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Connecticut who presented his findings last week at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union in Washington. It’s the first time that scientists have been able to track diet from space, and researchers say it’s a new tool for looking at how certain seabird and penguin populations are doing on other regions of the planet.

Knowing what, and how much, five million breeding pairs of Adélie penguins are eating is important because it tells researchers how the base of the food chain is doing. The population of tiny krill has crashed on the western side of the Antarctic peninsula, the 800-mile thumb that sticks up toward the tip of South America. Rapidly warming, changing climactic conditions as well as a huge increase in industrial-scale fishing, have taken a toll on these small crustaceans.

Krill are harvested commercially for use in pet food and nutritional supplements, but for many penguins, it’s the basis of their diet. As krill have become more scarce, so, too, have the penguins in western Antarctica who like to eat them. “Diet can tell us how food webs are shifting over time,” says Youngflesh. “It would take a lot of time and a lot of money to visit all these sites. Climate change is extremely complicated and we need data on large scales.”

Youngflesh says he hopes the color-coded poop maps can be used to track penguin populations in the future, as well as other seabirds across the globe. That’s because seabirds aggregate in the same places as penguins and eat the same things. Of course, this form of remote sensing can’t tell researchers how penguins’ diets compare across time. So one researcher dug through the guano itself in search of insights into the penguins’ history.

“There are unanswered questions about when did they arrive, how have their diets changed over time,” says Michael Polito, assistant professor of oceanography and coastal sciences at Louisiana State University. “Those are questions satellites can’t answer, and it was my job to dig it up.”

MICHAEL POLITO/LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY

Polito excavated mounds of guano, feathers, bones and eggshells on the remote Danger Islands, a large penguin colony on the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula that has remained mostly free of human visitors. When he reached the bottom of the pile, he took the material back to his lab and applied radiocarbon techniques to figure out the age of the first penguin settlers. He found that the penguins have been living on Danger Island for nearly 3,000 years. Since Adélie penguins need access to ice-free land, open water and a plentiful food supply to feed their baby chicks, the presence or absence of a penguin colony is a sign of the climate conditions at the time, Polito says. Polito’s new study pushes back the time of penguin’s arrival there by 2,200 years for that region and confirms other data taken from ice cores and sediments about the history of that region’s climate.

“This ability to estimate penguin diets from space will be a real game changer for science in Antarctica,” Polito said. “It really takes a lot of time and effort to figure out what penguins eat using traditional methods so being able to evaluate diets all around the Antarctic continent from space is a pretty amazing leap forward.”

The combination of digging through poop and analyzing images from satellites is giving researchers a better handle on possible trouble spots for the Adélie penguin, as well as its cousins the chinstrap, Gentoo and emperor penguins. The laboratory of Heather Lynch, associate professor of ecology and evolution at Stony Brook University, put together a nifty continent-wide map of penguin colonies from the four species, and is using citizen volunteers to count them one by one. Lynch’s group is also beginning to look back at previous satellite images taken from the 1980s until now to see if they can establish the same penguin poop-diet connection.