The excitement and bluster of a wild week for elephants, tigers, rhinos, great apes, and other species now wanes in the final day of the CITES Standing Committee meeting. While the Committee reviews reports from the week, my thoughts start churning in anticipation of the next international wildlife trade event — the 15th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES in Doha, Qatar next March. There is such an incredible amount of work to do in the next eight months!
It’s a good news / bad news day from the conference centre in Geneva. Which do you want first?
... Born Free USA united with API has urged a detailed federal examination of animal welfare and public safety conditions at all American zoos. They have made arrangements with their governments urging for an in-depth examination of current oversight of their zoos, with the ultimate goal of determining what specific immediate and long-term steps need to be taken to ensure the highest standards of animal welfare and to prevent another harmful human/animal interaction from ever occurring again. We Indians too should follow suit. ...
Animals in captivity
Rituparna Goswami Pandey
Assam Times (Assam, India)
... "The private ownership of dangerous reptiles such as pythons obviously presents a real danger," Nicole Paquette, Born Free USA senior vice president and general counsel said last week. "We're hoping that this incident spurs the Legislature to hold an immediate public hearing to discuss the serious public safety concerns surrounding the keeping of dangerous reptiles in private hands. There is absolutely no reason for the general public to be keeping such animals as pets. In terms of public safety it's an accident waiting to happen." ... She added: "The question is, how many accidents have to happen before legislators act to protect the public rather than the interests of a small group of individuals?"
Editorial: Ban these lethal 'pets'
The Gainesville Sun (Gainesville, FL)
... In a joint statement, In Defense of Animals, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, and Born Free USA also wrote that they were concerned Kallie and Bette might breed. Both elephants are nearly 30 years old, an age when the risks of breeding become high, Roy said. ...
Phila. says farewell to beloved elephant pair
The Inquirer (Philadelphia, PA)
Now it’s heating up.
Yesterday I mentioned the illegal primate trade and the transit routes through Egypt to the Middle East. Since then, noted but controversial filmmaker and conservationist Karl Amman has been thrown out of the meeting while trying to interview the Chinese delegation and CITES Secretary-General on film.
... Zoo administrators have said for some time that they planned to move two female elephants, Kallie and Bette, from the Philadelphia Zoo to the Somerset County center. But that initiative now is attracting controversy. On Tuesday, three organizations — PETA, Born Free USA and In Defense of Animals — said they are “joining forces to oppose the pending move.” ...
Pachyderm protest: Groups oppose breeding plan at Fairhope-area facility
The Tribune-Democrat (Johnstown, PA)
We’ve spent a long day wading through technical administrative matters, but I think we have been winning more than we are losing so far. Every bit of forward progress helps.