‘Massive backwards step for justice’ as National Trust fails to ban ‘trail hunting’

https://www.league.org.uk/News/massive-backwards-step-for-justice-as-national-trust-members-vote-to-support-trail-hunting

Updated:

Animal lovers have been left distraught today after National Trust members failed to pass a motion to ban ‘trail hunting’ on Trust land.

A group of National Trust members, supported by the League Against Cruel Sports, put forward a motion calling on the charity to stop fox, hare and stag hunts from illegally killing animals on Trust land under the cover of ‘trail hunting’, exempt hunting or just exercising their hounds.

In the result out this afternoon, the number of people voting against the motion to ban Trail hunting was 30,985. Those for the motion was 30,686. This means that the motion failed by 299 votes. It is worth noting that the National Trust was given discretionary votes by some members, meaning that those votes were used by the National Trust to vote against the motion. Without those discretionary votes, the number of people who voted for the motion was actually greater than those who voted against. So the decision was swung against  the motion by the National Trust board.

The result means that 67 hunts which have previously been issued with licences to hunt on Trust land will be able to continue doing so in the future.

Philippa King, Acting CEO of the League Against Cruel Sports, said:

“The Trust claims to protect our countryside but they have singularly failed to do that. This is a massive backward step for justice and a shot in the arm for cruelty. The fact that more people actually voted to ban trail hunting than voted not to is very telling and we are extremely proud of that. But the vote was lost because the National Trust decided to ignore the popular vote and side with the pro-hunt lobby. This is both sad and very worrying and we hope that the Trust will have taken on board and listened very carefully to the points made by members. We want to see them bring in the new licensing rules they have introduced and do everything in their power to ensure the hunts are properly monitored.

“The National Trust could have played a major role in curtailing illegal hunting in this country, but they chose to ignore 400 pages of evidence and instead mislead their members into voting against this motion. Their justification is that there have been no prosecutions of hunts on National Trust land – but if you let a burglar wander round your house without supervision, then he’s unlikely to be arrested.

“Hunts will now claim that people believe they are hunting legally. If so, they shouldn’t mind if the National Trust now invites independent monitors onto their land to ensure that the hunts follow their rules, as the Trust officials don’t normally monitor hunting on their land as they should. We’ll then see how many accidents, how many chases and how many deaths occur in the name of ‘trail’ hunting.”

Helen Beynon, National Trust member who was one of those proposing the motion, said:

“I started this with some other National Trust members because I witnessed the deceit of hunts which are claiming to follow trails but are actually chasing animals, and I couldn’t abide the thought of them getting away with it on National Trust land. I believe the only reason our motion has failed is because most National Trust members haven’t seen it with their own eyes. If they’d have seen what I’ve seen, then I have no doubt they would have voted with us.

“I was surprised, that despite all the evidence available to the National Trust Trustees, and the fact that we were given no opportunity to respond to the terms of any new licence, they advised members to vote against our proposal. By doing this, they have led people to believe that there is no problem. But there is a problem, hunts will now be able to continue their barbaric hobby on land which is meant to be protected for people and animals. It’s disgraceful, and the National Trust should be ashamed.”

TRAIL HUNTING, NOT DRAG HUNTING

The motion did not attempt to ban ‘drag’ hunting which has existed as a legitimate sport for 200 years and uses non-animal based artificial trails in areas without foxes or hares. ‘Drag’ hunting offers a genuine alternative to illegal hunting, as the huntsmen have full knowledge of where the trail is being laid, so ‘accidental kills’ are practically unheard of. However, no fox or hare hunt converted to drag hunting after the Hunting Act passed in 2004, and they invented ‘trail’ hunting instead.

“This was not an attempt to kill off ‘tradition’, it was an attempt to stop the killing of animals for fun,” said Philippa King. “Drag hunts follow an artificial trail and rarely catch an animal ‘by accident’, and will not be affected by this ban. Trail hunting was invented after the Hunting Act came in, but there was no genuine reason to invent a new version of drag hunting unless there was an ulterior motive – to carry on killing foxes, deer and hares, and get away with it.

“This deception has been recognised by many National Trust members, but not by the Trust themselves. Today the hunts will be laughing at the National Trust – or at least those in the National Trust who are opposed to hunting.”

Last year the National Trust issued 79 annual licences granting hunts access to their land in England and Wales to trail hunt.

The League believes there is no such a thing as the ‘sport of trail hunting’ and it is simply a temporary, false alibi to cover for illegal hunting while the hunting fraternity hopes for the hunting ban to be repealed or weakened.

Invented following the enactment of the Hunting Act 2004, trail hunting was created to mimic traditional hunting. Hunts are said to follow a pre-laid trail in areas where the ‘once’ hunted animals would naturally occur. However those controlling the hounds are not told where the scent has been laid, so if the hounds catch the scent of a live animal instead – resulting in a chase and often a kill – this is then classed as an ‘accident’.

Reports from more than 30 hunt monitors across ten years from different organisations covering the majority of hunts in England and Wales (157), have reported witnessing someone laying a possible trail only in an average of around 3% of the occasions they monitored hunts. Worse, they believed that they may have witnessed a genuine trail hunting event, rather than a fake one, on an average of around 0.04% of occasions.

Find out more about the National Trust vote at www.league.org.uk/nationaltrust

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Arkansas Online Editorial Opposes Turkey Drop


<http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2017/oct/17/find-a-better-way-20171017/?f=opinion>

*”We’ve always done it this way. Just because it’s always*
* been done that way doesn’t mean a tradition should continue.” *
– Arkansas Online

Posted: 10/17/2017
<http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2017/oct/17/find-a-better-way-20171017/?f=opinion#comments>

Dear Friends of UPC,

Thank you all for writing and phoning Yellville, Arkansas public officials
for
months in advance this year and in previous years, in response to our Alerts
(Tell Yellville to Stop Dropping Turkeys from Airplanes
<http://www.upc-online.org/turkeys/170727_tell_yellville_to_stop_dropping_turkeys_from_airplanes.html>),
urging the town to
eliminate the sadistic “turkey drop” from its annual festival, now in its
50th
year. Today’s Editorial in Arkansas Online (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)
fortunately opposes what it calls the “turkey toss” as “cruel,” while
unfortunately suggesting setting caged turkeys around town and opening them
for
the turkeys to come out and be chased down by townspeople as “more humane,
and
sporting” before slaughtering them. (The ritual foreplay of throwing turkeys
from airplanes, buildings and stages is supposed to culminate in a
“wholesome”
family slaughtering of the birds who manage to live through these
preliminaries.
See for example the article linked to in Yellville, Arkansas: A Sad, Bad
Place
<http://www.upc-online.org/turkeys/171016_yellville_arkansas-a_sad_bad_place.html>
Oct. 16, 2017).

While the *Arkansas Democrat-Gazette* and its online version, Arkansas
Online, do
not publish Letters to the Editor from out-of-state writers, they do post
comments from people outside of Arkansas, so today I posted this comment
following the newspaper’s “Editorial: Find a better way”:
___________

*Karen Davis says . . .*

Thank you for speaking out against dropping turkeys from moving aircraft
from a
height to which even wild turkeys never ascend. Nor did turkeys evolve in
Nature
to be dropped from any height but, rather, they evolved to take off from the
ground or a branch, which is totally different, biologically, from being
dropped, whether from an airplane or the top of a building. In addition to
the
height from which the turkeys are being forced out of the plane, they
experience
terrific wind pressure produced by the plane. There is nothing in these
birds’
natural behavior, genetics, or evolution enabling them to comprehend or cope
with this situation. Nor is chasing terrified turkeys around town “humane.”
Imagine grown-ups teaching their children to enjoy terrorizing, injuring and
killing turkeys (or any fellow creature) for the pleasure of making them
suffer.
Most of the comments posted following your recent article about the “turkey
drop” exhibit a very ugly, mean-spirited attitude of ignorance and
viciousness
toward the birds. The “turkey drop” speaks poorly for Yellville. The very
word
“Yellville” connotes cruelty and pitiless pathology.

Thank you again for taking a stand.

Sincerely,
Karen Davis, President of United Poultry Concerns,
author of More Than a Meal: The Turkey in History, Myth, Ritual, and
Reality.
___________

*More Than a Meal*

This scholarly and authoritative book examines the cultural and literal
history, as well as the natural history and biological needs and concerns
of turkeys. And much more!

Now available as a Free PDF
<http://www.upc-online.org/turkeys/more_than_a_meal.pdf

Oppose Continued Torture of Turkeys in Nightmare Arkansas Festival!

https://www.peta.org/action/action-alerts/urgent-turkeys-hurled-from-airplane/

[What kind of twisted species would hurl live turkeys from airplanes? It underscores their disrespect for the animals whose death they celebrate every fall.]

Every October, the city of Yellville, Arkansas, holds its annual Turkey Trot, an event that includes the notorious “turkey drop.” This year was no exception, as live domestically bred wild turkeys—who normally would fly only short distances and low to the ground—were hurled from an airplane, the courthouse roof, buildings, and the festival stage into the clutches of a frenzied crowd. Thankfully, four birds were rescued by local PETA supporters and provided with veterinary treatment, and they’re currently safe in foster care. More information about this year’s sadistic event can be viewed here.

Once again, please urge Yellville officials to end this cruelty, which is a blight on the entire state—then forward this alert to everyone you know.

The Honorable Clinton L. Evans
Marion County Sheriff
491 Hwy. 62 W.
Yellville, AR 72687
Please click here to send an e-mail.
870-449-4236

The Honorable Kenford O. Carter
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney
105 S. Berry St.
Yellville, AR 72687
870-449-4018

Should the Guggenheim have pulled controversial animal artworks?

http://www.cnn.com/style/article/guggenheim-controversial-animal-artworks/index.html

“Last week New York’s Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum announcedit would
be pulling three works from its next big exhibition, “Art and China
after 1989: Theater of the World.” It did so after angry criticism
from animal rights protesters that the works were — according to an
online petition that has attracted over 700,000 signatories —
“distinct instances of unmistakable cruelty against animals in the
name of art.””

“These works have outraged animal rights advocates: the campaign group
PETA fumed that “people who find entertainment in watching animals try
to fight each other are sick individuals whose twisted whims the
Guggenheim should refuse to cater to.
“Only a little more tolerantly, the American Society for the
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) declared that “the ASPCA
fully supports artistic expression, but strongly oppose any use of
animals in art or entertainment if it results in pain or distress to
the animals, which is clearly the case in this video,” referring to
“Dogs That Cannot Touch Each Other” (2003).”

 

Alligator forced to drink beer; 2 men charged

http://komonews.com/news/nation-world/alligator-forced-to-drink-beer-2-men-charged

by Gary Detman, CBS12Saturday, May 27th 2017

Two men were charged with harassment of wildlife after posting photos of beer being forced down the throat of an alligator. (South Carolina Department of Natural Resources via CNN Newsource)

0527_gatorbeer1.JPG0527_gatorbeer4.JPG0527_gatorbeer5.JPG
VIEW PHOTO GALLERY
6 photos
AA
JASPER COUNTY, S.C. (WPEC) – Two men in South Carolina are facing criminal charges for forcing beer down the throat of a young alligator, according to the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
Investigators said the men posted a photo of the alligator chugging the beer to social media. A short time later, the SCDNR started getting calls, messages and screenshots related to the incident.

Authorities said the two men, after forcing the juvenile gator to drink the beer, released the reptile back into a pond and watched it swim away.
Wildlife investigators went out to a dirt road near Hardeeville in Jasper County and caught up with the two men. Both admitted to harassing the alligator after seeing it cross the road.
Joseph Andrew Floyd Jr., 20, and Zachary Lloyd Brown, 21, are facing a misdemeanor charge of harassing wildlife.
“Wildlife conservation is a big part of what SCDNR officers do each day,” SCDNR 1st Sgt. Earl Pope said. “This case is a good example of why we strive to educate people about wildlife in hopes that they will respect it.”
The men face a maximum fine of $300.

Texas Lawmaker Wants to Legalize Hunting Feral Hogs from Hot Air Balloons

 https://www.texasobserver.org/texas-lawmaker-feral-hogs-hot-air-balloons/

Policymakers in Texas continue to scratch their heads over the state’s feral hog problem, and the solutions are getting weirder.

Hot air balloon  FLICKER/IRULAN_AMY

Researchers and policymakers for years have searched fruitlessly for effective ways to significantly drop feral hog population levels in Texas, with proposals ranging from eating our way out of the problem to widespread poisoning.

Roughly 2 million wild hogs are estimated to live in Texas, and they cause more than $50 million in damage each year. The invasive animals’ high breeding rate and lack of predators have fueled their proliferation in South, Central and East Texas, leading to big business for hunters and trappers.

In 2011, Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, then a state rep, passed what became known as the “pork chopper” bill, legalizing the hunting of feral hogs from a helicopter. On its face, the bill sounded more like a joke than an actual solution.

Hunter prepares to shoot feral hogs with a rifle from a helicopter.  YOUTUBE/NICK LEGHORN

Turns out, it’s really hard to shoot anything from a helicopter. In addition to being ineffective, the method is also very dangerous (and not just for the hogs.) The only results produced by the bill were some crazy YouTube videos and an industry in which people pay upwards of $3,000 per hunt to pick off pigs from a chopper.

Enter state Representative Mark Keough, a Republican and pastor from The Woodlands. He told the Observer that he “loved” Miller’s pork chopper bill and found himself asking: “What are more ways we can take more feral hogs?”

After chatting with hunters and conducting his own informal research, Keough believes he’s found an alternative solution: hot air balloons.

His House Bill 3535 would authorize Texans to hunt feral hogs and coyotes from a hot air balloon with a permit.

If the idea seems crazy, that’s because it is. No one hunts from a hot air balloon. Go ahead, Google it. “I haven’t found people anywhere doing this,” Keough admits.

But he thinks it would be pretty damn sweet to try. (It’s currently illegal, or he would’ve tried already, he said.)

The fast-moving helicopter approach, Keough says, has a lot of “safety issues,” leads to many misses and often scares off the hogs. “They’re smart,” he said.

Feral hogs damage land in rural areas, but have increasingly caused problems in suburban and urban areas.  U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE

Hot air balloons, on the other hand, are more stable, slower and offer a better rifle-shooting platform, Keough said.

Last July, 16 people were killed in the deadliest hot air balloon crash in U.S. history near Lockhart when the pilot lost control and crashed into power lines. The incident led to calls for stricter regulation of the balloon industry.

Still, Keough says, “It’s far safer than if you were hunting out of a helicopter.”

But more effective? Probably not.

Even Keough admits there’s a good chance hunters could spend all day in a balloon and not shoot anything. And its clumsy, slow-moving nature will keep hunters from effectively chasing the animals.

The animals, which can grow to weigh 100-400 pounds, have a gestation period that’s shorter than four months and litter sizes of up to 12. They are considered a non-game animal, meaning there are no seasons or bag limits, but a state hunting license is required.

Billy Higginbotham, a professor and wildlife and fisheries specialist with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, said the balloon strategy faces the same problem as helicopters in the eastern third of the state: trees.

“Aerial gunning by any vehicle [in East Texas] is not widely used because of the extensive tree cover,” Higginbotham said.

State Representative Mark Keough, R-The Woodlands.  FACEBOOK

Keough said the “pork choppper” bill “was more about creating an industry” and that no single strategy will significantly reduce hog populations.

“I think there is a possibility [with hot air balloons] for an industry, but the motivating factor is this is another way to get rid of the problem,” he said

Keough also sponsored legislation that would require more research on the effects of widespread lethal pesticides, including warfarin, before they can be used on hogs. The measure passed the House Monday.

A Texas Parks and Wildlife Department spokesperson declined to comment on pending legislation, citing agency policy. HB 3535 would require the agency to license individuals who want to hunt from the balloons.

Keough, who said he’s “interested in anything that will help us get rid of these things,” believes his bill represents the spirit of Texas.

“We’ve got a problem here, and we are willing to fix it ourself,” he said. “We have that Western, swashbuckling, cowboying type of way to deal with things. It’s part of the culture, it’s different than any other state.”

Correction: An earlier version of this story reported no license is required to hunt feral hogs in Texas. A state-issued license is required, although there are no seasons or bag limits.

More than 350 animals

Matted dogs

From HSUS.org

We are finding dogs living in inches of their own urine and feces, with coats matted so heavily that they can barely walk, puppies choking on toxic fumes and many animals suffering from a variety of skin and eye conditions.

Animals rescued from neglect

Sadly, it isn’t just dogs and puppies who are suffering.

So far, our Animal Rescue Team has found more than 350 neglected animals — including cats, donkeys, a horse, bunnies, chickens, ducks, geese, goats, sheep and an alpaca.

Jim, the cruelty we’re witnessing is heart-wrenching. We will stay here until every animal is on their way to a better life.

This rescue is only possible with the help of compassionate supporters like you.
Thank you so much,
Sára Varsa
Senior Director, Animal Cruelty, Rescue and Response

Lobster-crazy China sets record for US crustacean imports

FILE - In this Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, file photo, live lobsters are packed and weighed for overseas shipment at the Maine Lobster Outlet in York, Maine. The expanding market for lobsters in China is continuing to grow, with the country setting a new record for the value of its imports of the crustaceans from the United States. Photo: Robert F. Bukaty, AP / Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Photo: Robert F. Bukaty, AP

FILE – In this Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, file photo, live lobsters are packed and weighed for overseas shipment at the Maine Lobster Outlet in York, Maine. The expanding market for lobsters in China is continuing to grow, with the country setting a new record for the value of its imports of the crustaceans from the United States.

ROCKPORT, Maine (AP) — The expanding market for lobsters in China is continuing to grow, with the country setting a new record for the value of its imports of the crustaceans from the United States.

American lobster was almost unheard of in most of China until 2010, when the value of imports grew 250 percent to about $7.4 million. Last year, China imported more than $108 million in lobsters from America, surpassing the previous high of about $90.2 million in 2014.

“We’ve opened new markets in Asia, which is booming,” said Dave Cousens, president of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association. “Everything is clicking now.”

Chinese importers took in more than 14 million pounds of U.S. lobsters last year, which was also a record. The previous high was about 13.1 million pounds the previous year.

Interest in American lobster has grown in other countries in Asia as well, such as South Korea, which grew from less than $5 million in 2010 to nearly $28 million last year. Vietnam’s imports grew from $142,940 to more than $31 million in that time.

One of the factors spurring the growth of lobsters in China appears to be the growth of the country’s middle class, said Stephanie Nadeau, owner of The Lobster Company, in Arundel, Maine, which is a key player in the export business. American lobsters tend to be less expensive in China than other live seafood, such as spiny lobsters and geoduck clams, she said.

“It’s kind of an affordable luxury,” Nadeau said. “One of my customers said our lobsters are one of the cheapest things in the live tanks.”

The uptick came in a record year for lobster catch in Maine, where most of America’s lobster catch comes ashore. Fishermen caught more than 130 million pounds of lobster in Maine last year, an all-time record and more than double the 2007 total. Atlantic Canada also has a large lobster fishery and sends the same species of lobster to China.

“The Asian market is a key component,” said Patrick Keliher, the commissioner of the Maine Department of Marine Resources.

Lobster sales to China do not appear to be slowing down in the new year. America exported more than 1.7 million pounds and $14 million in lobsters to the country in the first month of the year.

A seafood company killed a lobster — and was convicted of animal cruelty

 https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/animalia/wp/2017/03/07/a-seafood-company-killed-a-lobster-and-was-convicted-of-animal-cruelty/?utm_term=.9dd86bc65913
March 7

An Australian seafood company was recently convicted of animal cruelty — for killing a lobster.

The legally actionable problem was not actually taking the life of the lobster. It’s that the lobster was killed in a way deemed to be unnecessarily — and illegally — brutal.

According to the Guardian’s description of what happened, workers at Nicholas Seafoods were seen by investigators “butchering and dismembering lobsters with a band saw, without adequately stunning or killing them.” The lobsters’ tails were cut from their bodies while the animals were still alive, in violation of local animal cruelty laws, and led to a conviction that may be the first of its kind in the world.

Depending on your perspective, this might both churn the stomach and raise confusing questions. Are you behaving monstrously if you boil a live lobster — a fairly common cooking method? Could you be found guilty of animal cruelty if so?

The answer to the second question is pretty straightforward: As things stand now, you are highly unlikely to be convicted of animal cruelty for behaving badly, even very badly, toward a lobster.

The Nicholas Seafoods killing took place in the Australian state of New South Wales — one of a few Australian jurisdictions to specifically include crustaceans sold for food, like lobsters, in its animal cruelty laws. The conviction was the first in that state, a local spokeswoman for the Royal Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said. The company was fined $1,500.

It’s not unheard of for some sea critters to have legal protections. Octopuses are “honorary vertebrates” under European Union law governing the treatment of animals used in scientific research. And some advocates say they would like to see more fish gain more protection — like the 806 people who recently signed an online petition asking to include lobsters in Britain’s animal cruelty laws.

But welfare laws for lobsters and their ilk are unusual. In the United States, neither fish nor crustaceans are covered under the federal Animal Welfare Act, and they are mostly exempt from state animal cruelty laws as well. (Occasionally, a cruelty charge has been brought under state law when a pet fish is killed in a brutal way.)

“A majority of state laws protect all animals, but there are typically exemptions for hunting and fishing activities,” said Ann Chynoweth, vice president of the Humane Society of the United States’s animal cruelty campaign. “Laws regarding slaughter do not cover fish — or chickens.” (They do cover cows and pigs.)

Why aren’t fish, crustaceans and chickens given these legal protections? It’s not because these creatures aren’t smart or don’t experience pain. There’s good evidence that they are and they do. Jonathan Balcombe, author of the book “What a Fish Knows: The Inner Lives of Our Underwater Cousins,” said he believes fish are sentient creatures with highly complex lives and societies.

“Their lives matter to them,” he said. “I’ve become firmly convinced they deserve equal moral consideration to all other vertebrates.”

Balcombe said the situation with crustaceans, as opposed to vertebrate fish, is “less clear.” But research has shown that crustaceans do “remember and learn from apparently painful events,” and that should bring them into our moral universe, he said.

“Sentience is the bedrock of ethics,” he said.

Regardless of the established science or the moral reasoning, the reason dogs and cows have more legal protection than lobsters seems primarily based on our cultural associations and practices. Dogs have the most protections because people adore them and think of them as members of the family. Fish and lobsters have been given practically none, because in general people do not — though every once in a while an especially old or pretty lobster captures our rapt attention and mercy.

“This exemplifies the paradoxes and inconsistencies we see in the treatment of animals,” said Hal Herzog, a psychology professor at Western Carolina University and author of “Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat.”

Group saves 110-year-old lobster from someone’s dinner table at South Florida restaurant. http://abcn.ws/29OSEJI 

But according to Andrew Lurie, the Humane Society International’s senior attorney for international law and trade, even those species we love don’t get a whole lot of protection — here in the United States or elsewhere. Animal cruelty convictions in general “are rather rare worldwide,” he said.

On the other hand, consumers are beginning to demand that the animals who produce our food are kept and killed more humanely. It’s this consumer demand that, for example, is driving companies to vow to switch to eggs from cage-free hens. In November, Massachusetts voters approved a ballot measure banning the sale of eggs or meat from animals kept in tight confinement.

So is the Australian lobster case an oddball anomaly or a step toward a future in which more animals we eat get more protections, and when it might not be so strange for lobsters to be included in our moral and legal universe? Lurie said he is not sure. But the chief executive of the RSPCA in New South Wales said it sets a significant precedent.

“We hope this conviction will expand the circle of empathy and welfare to crustaceans and more animals that often do not evoke the same level of compassion as others,” Steve Coleman said. “With the scientific community proving lobsters feel pain, and the New South Wales legislation backing that up, we’re excited to see such progress in the space of animal welfare, and we hope that this case can be a guiding light for others.”

Still want to dine on lobster but minimize its suffering — not to mention your chances of being busted if you happen to be in Australia? The RSPCA Australia’s website recommends a few preferable methods for ending a lobster’s life. And no, boiling it alive is not one of them.

Stunning the lobster in an electrified bath is better, the organization says, as is chilling the lobster in a saltwater ice slurry, then “rapidly cutting through the center-line of the head, thorax (chest) and abdomen with a large, sharp knife” before the lobster regains its version of consciousness.

Or — just a friendly suggestion here — you could avoid all these questions and let the lobsters live.

Read more:

To save their beloved red squirrels, Brits will monitor and kill invasive American ones

A revered sea turtle was offered coins as a blessing. She ate them all and nearly died.

More people are adopting old dogs — really old dogs

Bull Bison Brutally Stabbed by Hunters

(Warning: Contains Graphic Images)

On February 21, 2017 Crow, Cindy and I were on patrol in the afternoon heading up Jardine Road when we came upon two bull bison grazing beside the road. We stopped for a few moments to admire them. We also had severe reservations on their safety.

We continued to drive up Jardine Road to one of the lookout points and were checking on recent remains of bison kills. We heard five gunshots and our hearts sank.

It took about ten minutes to drive down Jardine Road and discover what we had feared. There were no hunting vehicles present, but we saw three teenagers and one younger boy situated about 50 yards up an incline from the road. They were busy gutting one of the bulls.

 

Bison Slaughter 1

 

We then spotted the other bull only 15 yards from the road. Cindy thought it was still breathing and Crow confirmed. Crow and Cindy immediately walked up to the teenagers to tell them this bull was still alive.

 

Bison Slaughter 2

 

The teenagers came down to the suffering bull with knives in their hands and immediately proceeded to stab him in the neck. The bull immediately jumped to his knees and everyone scattered. The bull fell down, but was actively moving its legs and head.

 

Bison Slaughter 3

 

The teenagers once again proceeded to stab him in the neck several more times.

 

Bison Slaughter 4
Bison Slaughter 5

 

He fought for his life as they stabbed him, raising his legs and hindquarters toward the sky in a desperate attempt to get away from his attackers.

 

Bison Slaughter 6
Bison Slaughter 8

 

The teenagers were giving up.

Then the adult hunters arrived. One of the hunters walked up to the struggling bull and shot it.

 

Bison Slaughter 9

 

The three of us are incredibly distraught at having to witness such a horrendous scene. I am certain that we will never forget the experience.

These two magnificent bulls had spent their lives living within Yellowstone. They lived their lives grazing and strolling along the rivers and roads of the park. They had become immune to vehicles and people. They lacked a fear mechanism that would allow them to avoid or defend themselves from such a brutal attack. When these two magnificent bison migrated across the park boundary, they were just strolling along a road and grazing like they always did. Hunters then pulled-up in a truck and shot them from a few yards away. This murder continued with the brutal stabbing and final slaughter of one of them. There is no skill to this type of “hunting,” which is really nothing more than a slaughter.

Witnessing this brutality makes me wonder how many other bison have succumbed to a similar death.

With the Buffalo,

Larry A. Lyons
BFC Volunteer