The following story appeared in the Fall/Winter 2013 issue of Born Free USA’s magazine, Animal Issues Digest.
There it was, on display in Denver, Colorado at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge: nearly six tons of elephant ivory seized by dedicated U.S. wildlife law enforcement agents over more than two decades. Huge tusks — some raw, some carved; walking canes with ivory handles, ivory inlays; statues spread out across a long table, intricately carved, and some, with deadly irony, depicting elephant images; and a glass box brimming with jewelry: ivory necklaces, ivory bracelets, ivory earrings.
The following article was published by the Born Free Foundation on Jan. 21, 2013.
We have heard from our colleagues at the Zimbabwe National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Animals Asia the wonderful news about the release of the five young elephant calves destined for zoos in China. They arrived at Umfurudzi Park early Jan. 19. Here they will undergo rehabilitation and integration with other elephants within the secured national park.
Ash died suddenly and violently in front of many onlookers, including children. “It was over in seconds,” one woman reportedly stated. “People were horrified. Women and children were screaming. My little boy was in tears.”
Ash was 9 years old and her death seemed to amuse some other folks, according to letters to the editor in response to the news reports.
And what did we learn? The death did happen at a facility that, we are told, is educational.
An Environmental Risk Usually Ignored Is Identified
Some recently published research indicates that 75 percent of the zoos in Spain are at risk of having their animals escape, due to inadequate caging or barriers. The study was published in the scientific journal Biological Invasions, and divided the risk between those exhibits with inadequate containment and those where animals could escape “because the public could release them or remove them from their cages or tanks.” The concern of lead researcher Maria C. Fabregas and her team was specifically for the environment and conservation.
From Animal Issues, Volume 40 Number 2, Summer 2009
After nearly a decade of waiting, through often tortuous legal maneuvering, the elephants finally got their day in court. After years of circus industry denials about the mistreatment of animals behind the big top, the truth has finally been exposed for the world to see.
From Animal Issues, Volume 38 Number 4, Winter 2007
The Animal Protection Institute has never been afraid to do the right thing when it comes to helping animals. Fighting animal cruelty, suffering, and neglect, requires courage and vision.
In this issue we announce probably the most visionary step in our history. In a move that redefines the animal protection movement, API has joined forces with Born Free USA to become Born Free USA.
Another circus season has come to a close, but this does not mean that the elephants and other animals get a break. The time they have off from the road will be spent learning new tricks for the 2007 season. For the elephants, this means they will be forced to learn the new routine through force and intimidation at the hand of a bullhook.
In the course of our everyday lives, we humans encounter other animals in a wide variety of settings and situations. We may view farmed animals in transport trucks on the highways, companion animals in “pet” shops, and captive exotic or wild animals used for entertainment or kept as “pets” in the residences of friends or neighbors. If we are fortunate, we may encounter wild animals when hiking or exploring at wildlife refuges or nature preserves.
It is both convenient and comforting to assume that specially-written laws protect the animals in each of these situations from harm. Unfortunately, however, such an assumption is misguided.