New Jersey has become the first state to ban the sale or import of ivory and rhinoceros horns in a bid to stem the state’s role as a major hub in the illegal trade of such products. “New Jersey has emerged as a powerful leader on these issues,” said Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA. “This new law is of particular importance because the port of Newark is a hub for illegal wildlife trade. The elephant poaching epidemic across Africa has reached crisis levels and rhino poaching is escalating exponentially, so we have no time to waste in enacting legislation.”
Read the latest blog installment from Born Free USA CEO, Adam M. Roberts, on One Green Planet. This month, Roberts discusses the hypocritical practice of trapping on national wildlife refuges: lands set aside for the express purpose of conservation. Explains Roberts, “What I don’t know, and what I simply can’t accept, is that there can be a place in America called a ‘wildlife refuge’ that allows the trapping of wild animals. Synonyms for refuge: sanctuary, shelter, asylum, haven.”
Link: One Green Planet
Today, August 4, the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit will hold five signature events, one of them being “Combating Wildlife Trafficking”—“an opportunity for African leaders to join together and share their ideas on how to best counter the poaching threat,” according to the White House website. Born Free USA's CEO, Adam M. Roberts, would like to see a more hands-on approach that includes having the range states close their borders to ivory imports and infuse anti-poaching and wildlife law enforcement efforts on the ground.
An 11-year-old boy had his arm amputated after being nearly torn off by a tiger at Cascavel Zoo in southern Brazil. The boy tried to pet the tiger through the bars of the animal's cage. Visit Born Free USA’s Exotic Animal Incidents Database for numerous examples of the dangers of interacting with exotic animals.
A Michigan woman was hospitalized after being bitten by a lion in a Michigan zoo. “I put my hand down there to pet it and it ripped my finger,” she says. The woman claims that a zookeeper let her into the lion’s cage, which zoo owners deny. Visit Born Free USA’s Exotic Animal Incidents Database for numerous examples of the dangers of interacting with exotic animals.
Suffering with teeth problems, a disintegrating dorsal fin, and what appears to be a significant depression behind her blowhole, cetacean advocates believe that Kiska, who has spent the last 35 years in captivity at Marineland, Canada, is very sick. The solitary Icelandic orca, who was captured in 1977 at the estimated age of three, hasn't seen another killer whale since 2011. Dedicated activists say that they have watched Kiska turn into the shell of what a killer whale should be.
Link: Digital Journal
The harvest of wild terrestrial and aquatic animals each year injects more than $400 billion dollars into the world economy—but also breeds piracy, slavery, and terrorism. The over-harvest of wild animals, both from land and sea, has created a market defined by low supply and high demand. This has led to the proliferation of organized crime in some of the poorest parts of the world. Over-hunting and over-fishing have, at least in part, created conditions where human trafficking and terrorism can thrive.
A recent campaign by Born Free USA asked fur owners to donate their old garments to help rehabilitate injured or orphaned wildlife. “The furs are being used to replicate the warmth, comfort, and stimulation that young orphaned animals would have otherwise experienced from their mothers, siblings, and their natural environment,” says Adam M. Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA. The organization sent 100-plus furs to wildlife rehabilitation centers across the country.