Secretary Kempthorne announced today that the polar bear will be protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) as a threatened species due to the threat of decreasing sea ice habitat caused by climate change. Born Free USA united with API welcomes this necessary step to protecting polar bears, but has reservations that an interpretation of the ESA will, as Secretary Kempthorne says, "ensure the protection of the bear while allowing us to continue to develop our natural resources in the arctic region in an environmentally sound way."
Secretary Kempthorne Announces Endangered Species Act Protection for Polar Bear
U.S. Department of the Interior
"After 15 years of denying it, the USDA finally admits Asian elephants can pass m-tuberculosis to humans and vice-versa. ... Now ask yourself if you know anyone with m-tuberculosis. Then ask them whether they have been to the circus lately." Born Free USA united with API has long trumpeted the threats posed to public health and safety by circuses' use of TB-positive elephants in public performances.
Circus Elephants with Tuberculosis are a Real Threat to People
The Huffington Post
People need to understand that using wild animals such as bears, tigers and primates in entertainment is as inherently dangerous as it is cruel. Those who do not attack, maul and kill people, and serve their purpose without incident, are frequently killed, neglected or sold off to research institutions or roadside zoos when they are no longer useful in making people money.
Using animals to entertain is cruel
Letter to the Editor
Zibby Wilder, Director of Public Relations
Born Free USA united with API
The Herald (Everett, WA)
As Footloose Montana plans a voter initiative to ban trapping on public lands after repeated incidents of nontarget animals, including dogs and even a golden eagle, killed in traps, trappers continue to say it's the fault of the dogs' caregivers and to cling to the absurd claim that trapping is a "very efficient and humane method of managing wildlife" in this story from The New York Times. Born Free USA united with API continues to show that the evidence of inefficiency and inhumanity is overwhelming, as documented on our www.bancrueltraps.com website.
Montana Dog Owners Find Wild-Animal Traps Put Pets in Harm’s Way
The New York Times
The grizzly bear that wrestled Will Ferrell's character in the recent film Semi-Pro seemed to obediently follow cues — which made its killing of its trainer with a bite to the neck all the more stunning. ... The attack prompted actress Virginia McKenna, founder of the international wildlife charity Born Free, to call for the entertainment industry to stop using wild animals. "The movie industry urgently needs to use its technological and creative imagination to put an end to the use of live wild animals in commercials and movies," McKenna, who starred in the 1966 wildlife film Born Free, said in a printed release. "Hollywood is a dream factory — this time the dream has become a nightmare."
Bear gave off no reasons for concern before trainer's death
Paramedics rushed to an animal trainer who had been bitten on the neck by a 700-pound, 7-1/2-foot-tall grizzly bear. Stephan Miller, 39, died at the scene. Miller was killed by the 5-year-old bear during the making of a promotional video for Randy Miller's Predators in Action center. The bear's fate has not been decided. "It's still a wild animal," said a woman who works with wild animals. "Even though it may appear that the bear attacked for no reason, there was a reason. ... They're not cold-blooded killers." Born Free USA united with API has long warned of the dangers of using wild animals in entertainment and has documented dozens of deaths and attacks by wild animals at facilities using wild animals for amusement.
Grizzly bear attacks, kills his trainer
"Parks Canada has stated that cormorants are native to Middle Island and that they're a Carolinian species. They just don't want to have a vibrant native colonial nesting colony there and have spun a web of nonsense in an attempt to justify killing the birds. It is disappointing that two researchers would join Parks Canada in misrepresenting the facts," writes Barry Kent MacKay, Canadian Senior Program Associate for Born Free USA united with API and a birder of no small reputation. Barry authored the recent Action Alert on protecting Double-crested Cormorants on Middle Island in Point Pelee National Park.
Facts misrepresented by researchers
Barry Kent MacKay
Letter to the Editor
The Windsor Star
A coalition of conservation and animal protection groups (including the then–Animal Protection Institute, now Born Free USA united with Animal Protection Institute) on Monday sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to force it to extend federal protection to Canada lynx in New Mexico. The federal government lists the elusive, furry cats as threatened in 14 states — but not in New Mexico. Last August, the coaliion petitioned for protection for the cats, asking the agency to make a decision on the species' status in New Mexico. The lawsuit filed in federal court in Washington, D.C., complains that Fish and Wildlife failed to make a finding on the petition within 90 days as required by the Endangered Species Act. The law gives the agency 90 days to determine whether the petition provides sufficient information for the agency to then determine whether a listing may be warranted.
Conservationists sue for lynx protection in New Mexico
Sue Major Holmes