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Animal News

Extinction Trade

Published 03/03/08

Endangered animals are the new blood diamonds as militias and warlords use poaching to fund death.

Extinction Trade
Sharon Begley
Newsweek

More trouble at the San Francisco Zoo

Published 02/29/08

Two months after a Siberian tiger mauled three men at the San Francisco Zoo — resulting in the death of one of them — two other men were allegedly caught late Thursday throwing acorns at the zoo's two black rhinos. Zoo officials said the rhinos, which are endangered, did not appear agitated by the incident. "I'm so glad the system works well," zoo spokesman Paul Garcia said, referring to the emergency hotline phones that were installed after the maulings by Tatiana the tiger on Christmas Day. (There is no reference int he news story to the use of the hotline phones.)

Man cited for allegedly throwing acorns at San Francisco Zoo's rhinos
Linda Goldston
San Jose Mercury News

Exotic Pet Amnesty Day

Published 02/28/08

With alternately tearful goodbyes and barely contained impatience, more than 100 South Floridians surrendered their unwanted exotic animals at the Miami MetroZoo on Saturday. The Exotic Pet Amnesty Day event was designed to give owners a safer alternative to turning the critters loose. Of the more than 150 pets handed over, all but six found new homes.

It's A Zoo Out There: Event Collects 150 Exotic Pets
Rasha Madkour
Associated Press

A sanctuary where many animals died in a recent fire has no USDA license

Published 02/27/08

An animal sanctuary where nearly 100 animals died in a fire last month remains open despite not being licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, records show. A consent order filed Aug. 14, 2006, states that Safari Joe's Wildlife Ranch, also known as Safari Joe's Exotic Wildlife Rescue, owned by Joe Estes, has a history of violations, according to the USDA. An administrative law judge ruled that Estes had committed at least 39 violations of the federal Animal Welfare Act.

Embattled animal ranch is still open
Jeff Billington
Tulsa World

The USDA won't enforce the Animal Welfare Act

Published 02/26/08

In 2006, a big cat owner who provided exotic animals for Hollywood movies was killed and partially devoured by one of her tigers. Authorities reported the tiger that killed her was 100 pounds underweight. Less than a year earlier, the USDA cited her for failing to prove her animals were “being fed an adequate diet.” And that’s all the agency did ...

A paper tiger: USDA cited Sandstone owner of underfed tigers — and never followed up before attack
Duluth News Tribune

A local newspaper profiles our CEO, Will Travers

Published 02/25/08

At age 5, Will Travers spent a year in Africa while his parents – Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna – were starring in a movie about efforts to return a lioness to the wild. Released in 1966, "Born Free" was an instant classic with a lasting impact, raising the public's consciousness about animal welfare through the beloved lioness Elsa. The movie had a lasting impact on Will Travers, too. He is the chief executive officer of Born Free U.S.A. united with Animal Protection Institute, a nonprofit based in Sacramento. The organization, which began in November with the merger with API, tackles many animal issues, among them the plight of animals in zoos.

For activist, it’s lions and tigers and cares
Blair Anthony Robertson
Sacramento Bee

Animals in Entertainment: Cruel Spectacles

Published 02/21/08

From Pedicab News: "Although many of us may have fond memories of a day at the circus when we were young, we are largely unaware of what those amusing moments for us cost the captive animals in a lifetime of abuse that is hidden from the public." The video on the website linked below shows elephants riding tricycles in an Asian circus, with reference to the campaign of Born Free USA united with API. "In Thailand," continues the text, "as in many other eastern nations, elephants have been used as work animals for centuries. However, since the Industrial Revolution, their use in industry has been justifiably diminished, but exploiting them for enslaved showmanship serves no useful purpose, at all."

Elephants on Trikes
Pedicab News

Young elephant’s pregnancy brings criticism on zoo

Published 02/14/08

Sydney’s Taronga Zoo is celebrating the news that its 9-year-old Asian elephant is pregnant, but animal rights groups said that there was little conservation benefit in Thong Dee’s pregnancy and that the young elephant faced health risks. “We know that calves born in zoos have double the mortality rate in the wild, and this pregnancy will put both mother and calf at great risk,” siad the chief scientist with Australia’s Royal Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals (RSCPA).

Young Sydney elephant’s pregnancy sparks protests
Paris Maggs-Smith
Reuters

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