Yesterday, Denmark’s Copenhagen Zoo publicly killed an 18-month-old giraffe, Marius, with a bolt gun—and fed his remains to lions. Despite international outrage and offers to rehome Marius, zoo officials decided to euthanize the “unwanted” giraffe to avoid inbreeding in the zoo’s giraffe population.
Link: NBC News
France has just followed the lead of Gabon, the Philippines, the U.S., and China by crushing 3.5 tons of its stockpiled ivory. Will Travers of Born Free commented, “By destroying this ivory, France is sending two key messages to the global community: that the illegal ivory trade is completely unacceptable and that ivory should never be allowed to enter the marketplace, where it fuels demand and contributes to the death of both elephants and the wildlife rangers trying to protect them.”
Douglas, an orphaned hippopotamus rescued in Zambia by Born Free Foundation, is now being nursed back to health by the staff at Chipembele Wildlife Education Trust—and by Coco and Molly, two Jack Russell terriers. Douglas’ canine friends are keeping him company during his rehabilitation.
This month, representatives from 50 countries—including Prince William, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, and Chinese media icons like actor Jackie Chan and basketball star Yao Ming—will attend a summit to pressure China to end their monumental role in the ivory trade. Born Free’s Will Travers states, “China is the biggest market because, in 2008, the international community decided it was acceptable to sell some stockpiled ivory to China and Japan to satisfy demand… What it did was it stimulated demand.”
Link: Voice of Russia
Several musical acts have cancelled upcoming concerts at SeaWorld amidst the controversy of “Blackfish,” the hit documentary that questions the practice of keeping orcas in captivity. Despite this backlash, Alan Jackson and Kid Rock are unfortunately still set to perform at SeaWorld’s “Bands, Brew & BBQ” event this weekend.
One of our most cherished corporate partners, Owls and Friends, is doing a special month-long benefit for Born Free USA. We will receive 20 percent of all sales for the month of February! Its wildlife-themed jewelry, accessories, and gifts are perfectly in sync with the work we do to Keep Wildlife in the Wild. All items are carefully-selected vegan and fair-trade products. Please be sure to check out the Owls and Friends website and order by February 28.
Senator Jeremy Nordquist of Omaha, Nebraska has proposed a bill that would make it illegal to own or sell shark fins in Nebraska. Despite living in a landlocked state, Nordquist understands the importance of taking a stand: “It’s obvious there aren’t a lot of shark fins in Nebraska…but it would send a statement that Nebraska cares about our world’s ecological balance.”
Link: KLKN TV
Poachers have shot and killed a rhinoceros in a Kenyan national park, despite new laws—and despite the park being heavily guarded. According to a spokesman for the Kenya Wildlife Service, “The rhino horns were hacked and taken away… Investigations are under way.”
Link: Yahoo News