A survey of oyster habitats around the world has found that the succulent mollusks are disappearing fast and 85 percent of their reefs have been lost due to disease and over-harvesting. Most of the remaining wild oysters in the world, or about 75 percent, can be found in five locations in North America, said the study published in BioScience, the journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences.
Link: AFP/Yahoo! News
A recent petition filed with Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke asks for the listing of spring-run Klamath River Chinook salmon as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The Center for Biological Diversity, Oregon Wild, the Environmental Protection Information Center and the Larch Co. filed the petition on Jan. 25, citing a number of factors they believe have led to a decline in spring-run Chinook numbers as well as strategies for mitigating the impacts.
Link: Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)
China has banned animal circuses and warned its zoos they must stop abusing animals or face closure. Live animal shows and circuses are hugely popular in China, and draw around 150 million visitors a year at 700 zoos. However, animal rights campaigners have repeatedly complained that the shows should be stopped.
Link: The Telegraph (Warning: Contains mildly graphic photograph of a tiger carrying a live bird in its mouth.)
Born Free USA, working with Animal Protection New Mexico (APNM), put out an Action Alert last September asking members to speak out for more than 200 chimpanzees housed at an Alamogordo, N.M., facility. These chimps, who are semi-retired and have not been used as subjects for laboratory experimentation since 2001, were to be shipped to Texas where they again would be subjected to invasive and harmful experiments. In recent weeks, the National Institutes of Health canceled the transfer until the National Academy of Science reviews policies on using chimpanzees in biomedical research, which is anticipated to take about two years. So for now, the chimps are safe – thank you all for your extraordinary efforts!
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — If you want to own a pet monkey, you’re out of luck in Illinois. A ban on new monkey ownership is one of hundreds of state laws that took effect Jan. 1.
Link: Daily Herald (Plainfield, Ill.)
China is extending its so-called panda diplomacy agreement with the United States, letting giant pandas stay at the Washington national zoo for another five years, a Chinese conservation official said Jan. 19. "This is a great opportunity ... to advance our friendship," Zang Chunlin, secretary-general of the China Wildlife Conservation Association, told reporters.
Virginia McKenna, who co-founded the Born Free Foundation in England with her husband Bill Travers and son Will Travers (Born Free USA's chief executive officer), is featured in a three-part Q&A article on the Pet News and Views website.
LONDON – Britain and China have signed trade deals worth £2.6 billion and announced Beijing will loan a pair of giant pandas to Edinburgh Zoo for 10 years. The agreements were inked during talks in London between Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.