New inspections describe animal deaths at Baton Rouge Zoo as 'unfortunate events with no common thread'
The high-profile deaths of giraffes, a tiger and monkeys at the Baton Rouge Zoo over a short time span is "a string of unfortunate events that have no common thread," according to a new batch of inspections of the facility.
The Baton Rouge Zoo asked for three separate audits from its accrediting agency, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the wake of several unusual animal deaths over the past several months. The combination of those deaths this spring while zoo officials began lauding a $110 million rebuilding campaign sparked outcry and distrust from some political leaders and the residents they represent.
But none of the audits into how the zoo is run and the events leading to animals' deaths have found wrongdoing from the zoo staff. The audits instead pin the deaths on problems like weather, animal stress and unpreventable health conditions.
Lebanon to tame lion owners with new laws
The super-rich of Lebanon are buying lion cubs from zoos for bargain prices. But one animal rights organization is behind a government crackdown to stop the practice.
Tucked between a parking garage and a hospital is one of Lebanon's infamous zoos. But this institution may soon to feel the heat from the government here, which aims to crack down specifically on how they treat big cats.
And it's not hard to see why. In this tiny, dilapidated zoo, two lions are kept in a cage measuring 8 by 10 meters (about 26 by 33 feet). There is not even enough water for them in the sweltering summer heat of 30-plus degrees Celsius (85-plus degrees Fahrenheit), and the animals seem exhausted.
Today (01.09.2016), the Lebanese government will introduce new laws that attempt to force zoos to take the welfare of their big cats more seriously. And if enforced, the rules are likely to impact not only zoos.
Despite its grinding poverty, Lebanon has a contingent of rich individuals who keep fully grown lions and tigers in their homes - in some cases, even in Beirut apartments.
In fact, it's this same poverty that drives an illegal, underground business of animal trafficking. Cash-strapped zoos can make real money from selling lions, tigers and cheetahs to families of the country's elite during a period where the rest of the country can ill afford the 3-euro ($3.30) entrance fee.
Lack of awareness
The zoos themselves are in pretty dismal state, generally keeping animals in appalling conditions - according to Jason Mier, director of Animals Lebanon, "ofte
Massimo Bergamini: The importance of zoos
The death this year of Harambe, the Cincinnati Zoo’s western lowland silverback gorilla, continues to inflame online passions, spur the creation of viral memes and provide fodder for anti-zoo commentary.
National Post columnist Colby Cosh was the latest to jump into the fray, arguing the lesson we should take from Harambe’s death is that zoos are bad, and we know this because journalist H.L. Mencken said so about 100 years ago. But if you look beyond Cosh’s bizarre attempt to characterize zookeepers as gun-toting desperadoes and his (demonstrably incorrect) suggestion that the research taking place at zoos has no in-the-field applications, you’ll find that, at its root, his article — and the public reaction to Harambe’s death — actually makes a case for zoos.
The zoos that existed in Mencken’s time had about as much in common with modern zoos as his newsroom at the Baltimore Sun had in common with that of the newspaper today. But let’s take his argument that we can only learn from animals “in a state of nature” at face value and see what lessons the critically endangered wild western lowland gorillas can impart.
Former head of Cherry Brook Zoo sues for wrongful dismissal
The former chief administrative director of the Cherry Brook Zoo in Saint John is taking his former employer to court for wrongful dismissal.
A notice of action and statement of claim has been filed against the zoo and members of the board of trustees. The suit alleges Leonard Collrin and his wife Linda were escorted by police from their home at the zoo on July 6th.
Rare stick insects breed at Bristol Zoo
One of the world's rarest stick insects has successfully bred at Bristol Zoo - the first time the species has done so outside Australia.
Three pairs of Lord Howe Island stick insects have reached adulthood and laid eggs after they themselves hatched from eggs brought from Melbourne Zoo.
The critically endangered creature was thought to be extinct for almost 80 years until its rediscovery in 2001.
Only about 20-30 individuals are left in the wild.
Mark Bushell, curator of invertebrates at Bristol Zoo, said he was "ecstatic".
A Must-Read Review of the Wild-Caught Aquarium Fish Sector
We all are used to reading and witnessing attacks on the ornamental aquatic industry, which is accused of ransacking, plundering and even “raping” the world’s reefs and freshwater habitats to satisfy an insatiable consumer hunger for aquarium fish. Often, the accusations include false statistics, such as stating that more than 90 percent of marine fish are collected with sodium cyanide. Evidence and data used in these attacks often are out-dated or simply incorrect.
It’s time the industry stood up for itself, not just by refuting accusations with good science, but by proactively showing the world the true face of the industry. In fact, the U.K.’s Ornamental Aquatic Trade Association (OATA) did this in a well-researched report “Wild caught ornamental fish—the trade, the benefits, the facts,” which knocks the whole issue into perspective.
For example, did you know that the total volume of marine fish caught for home aquaria represents, at most, a mere 0.0001 percent of the fish harvested from the sea for human consumption and other purposes? Further, large numbers of food and other fish are thrown back as unwanted bycatch, thus wasting vast amounts of a potentially valuable resource.
The report resulted from a one-year review program by David Roberts, Ph.D., and Ian Watson of the U.K.’s Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE) of the School of Anthropology and Conservation at the University of Kent, with additional input from
Shedd Aquariums World of Water: What It Takes to Keep a Quality Environment for Animals
For a bunch of air-breathers, those of us trusted to keep our animals healthy and thriving are up to our “gills” as we’re tasked to think about our water quality at Shedd Aquarium. As we near the end of National Water Quality Month, it’s important to reflect and think about why water quality is a critical issue 365 days a year, not just during the month of August.
Animals - whether in an aquarium environment or in a native environment - have no control over the quality of the water around them. We do. As a result, we have an obligation to ensure the very best water quality possible. At Shedd, this means putting the right water for the right purpose in the right place. That’s no small task! Water comes in all forms at Shedd - clear, cloudy, salt, fresh, warm, cold - the list goes on! These conditions are carefully analyzed and adjusted as needed to create the best home for the animals that spend their lives swimming inside it.
How do we do that? We start in our own backyard, in the same waters of Lake Michigan that millions of people in the Chicagoland area use daily to drink, clean and cook with. All water that we use for our habitats at Shedd is first put through a massive charcoal filter - think about a home water filtration system, and multiply that by about 10,000. That’s where the water for our habitats begins its journey. This removes impurities like chlorine, which can be poisonous to our amphibians and fish. From there, we apply a variety of techniques to purify this water, like running it through a reverse osmosis membrane - a very specialized filter that removes dissolved salts and other molecules that even charcoal can’t capture. This process is necessary in our Amazon Rising habitats because Amazon river water in the native habitat is known to be very low in dissolved salts and we must replicate that for animals that have evolved in that type of water.
Horrible Zoo Puts Dogs And Cats Behind Bars
When Colleen Hegarty went to Bahrain, a tiny country off the coast of Saudi Arabia, on a Fulbright scholarship, she had no idea she'd end up bringing a dog back home to Florida with her.
But during her 10-month stay in Bahrain, Hagarty discovered Cooper in the most shocking place. He hadn't been a street dog or a shelter dog.
Why Volunteering With Animals Does Nothing For Conservation
Lots of people want to give up their free time to help support conservation. By ‘lots’ I mean relatively – google shows 2,900 searches* for ‘conservation volunteering’ last month – but still, that’s pretty good. This is brilliant news of course, and should be wholeheartedly applauded.
Overall, this must add up to tens of thousands of hours of effort from volunteers every year, as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations/fundraising to make it possible. With all this money and effort, conservation could really go places. I should leave it there and chalk it up as a success story. There are lots of ways to support conservation, but truth be told every time someone comes up to me after a talk and says they want to help conservation so are heading off to A) An elephant orphanage, B) A primate sanctuary or C) To work with big cats, my heart sinks.
Zoos: For whose benefit – man’s or animal’s ?
Close zoos, Do not close zoos, Close some zoos – this is the current debate worldwide.
A debate has now begun in Sri Lanka.
DOC ZONE in Zoo Revolution : History of Zoos traces zoo history from 3500 BC to 2007, some milestones being: 3500 B.C, recent excavations near Hierkonpolis, Egypt discovered the earliest zoo, when remains of exotic animals were found buried;1500 B.C.,Egyptian Queen Hatshepsut maintained a zoo; 1752, the oldest existing zoo,Tiergarten (Austria) opened; 1793, the first modern zoo opened in Paris; 1828,London zoo opened with a template for modern zoos with taxonomic displays and wrought iron cages; 1752,Tierpark(Germany) became the first zoo to combine naturalistic landscapes and barless enclosures; 1963,the first safari park Tama(Tokyo)opened; 2007,the first game reserve Gondwana (South Africa)opened.
DOC ZONE says that the belief was that Pharaohs would have demanded that wild animals be captured for their amusement, enemy intimidation or hunting, to show their wealth and power.
WAZA (World Association of Zoos and Aquariums) founded in 1946 to guide zoos and aquariums on animal welfare, education and global conservation, has over 280 members, reportedly including the Dehiwela Zoo.
Animal rights expert Doris Linsays, “Not all animal rights activists love animals. Some respect them because they understand animals have a place in the world. Zoos, especially the ones that are doing everything right, present a special challenge to the animal-loving advoc
The Attica Zoological Park Receives Four Dolphins from Finland
Four bottlenose dolphins were transferred to their new home at the Attica Zoological Park in Greece during what was described as a “covert operation” by Yle, Finland’s national public broadcasting company.
The four dolphins named Veera, Delfi, Leevi and Eevertti were living at the Särkänniemi’s amusement park dolphinarium in Tampere, where the facility is set to close down.
A large cargo plane arrived in the early hours of Sunday morning around 4:30 a.m. according to reports by Yle, and transferred the dolphins from the Tampere-Pirkkala airport to Athens.
The four dolphins arrived at the Attica Zoological Park in Spata on Sunday morning where they will live out the rest of their days in the company of other dolphins at the Zoo’s facility.
Yle confirmed that the transfer of the four dolphins was done at no cost
Cookie the Cockatoo at Brookfield Zoo dies
Cookie, an at least 83-year-old cockatoo and one of Chicago’s best known zoo animals, died over the weekend at Brookfield Zoo, the zoo announced Monday.
“On Saturday morning, Cookie suffered a very abrupt decline in his health, prompting the veterinary and animal care staff to make the extremely difficult decision that it was time to peacefully euthanize him,” Michael Adkesson, vice president of clinical medicine for Chicago Zoological Society, which runs Brookfield, said in a statement.
In addition to generations of fans, the Major Mitchell’s cockatoo could claim many superlatives. He was the last animal that dates back to the zoo’s original collection, in 1934; the oldest living animal at Brookfield; “one of the longest-lived birds on record,” according to the online Animal Ageing and Longevity Database; and “Oldest Parrot - Living” as certified by Guinness World Records in 2014.
The press took note, too, often covering the zoo’s annual birthday celebrations for the parrot.
“Like some cockeyed vaudevillian comic in a loud suit and a funny hat, Cookie, an old cockatoo, always has relied on exaggera
HCMC to hire foreign consultants for Saigon Safari Park project
Accordingly, Vinpearl Company will be responsible for paying all consulting fees.
The city’s government has asked the Department of Transport to open Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) routes connecting the city center to the park’s adjacent areas and expand Nguyen Thi Ranh road.
The municipal authorities have also required Cu Chi Dsitrict to complete the compensation in September.
Saigon Safari Park covers on an area of more than 485 hectares. The project would require a total investment of US$500 million.
The park will be the city’s new zoo to house most of the animals currently in residence at the Sai Gon Zoo. The current Sai Gon Zoo will expand upon its existing gardens to become a full botanical garden, home to rare plants and some animals. The new zoo is expected to become the largest ecotourism facility in the country.
Saigon Safari Park focusing on wildlife conservation and the breeding of rare plants and animals will includes an open zoo, a night safari, a butterfly garden, a
New literature in the Rhino Resource Center
California to impose fines for using elephant bullhooks
Trainers who use bullhooks to discipline elephants in California will soon be subject to steep fines under legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown.
The Democratic governor announced Monday that he signed SB1062 by Sen. Ricardo Lara, a Bell Gardens Democrat.
Individuals, zoos, circuses or other organizations caught using bullhooks, baseball bats, pitchforks or other harmful devices will be subject to fines up to $10,000. They could also lose their elephant permit.
Animal welfare groups say the tools are inhumane, but some opponents of the legislation say they can facilitate care and research when used properly.
Brown vetoed a bill last year that would have criminalized the us
Taiping Zoo and Night Safari needs donations for animal feed
The Taiping Zoo and Night Safari needs contributions from corporations and corporate members to cover the expenses of animal feed which is increasing.
Taiping Municipal Council (MPT) president Datuk Abd Rahim Md Ariff said the cost of food for the animals was more than RM4 million a year.
He said to reduce its burden, the zoo had introduced an adoption programme since 1994 to get sponsors to cover the cost of animal feed.
The zoo is offering five packages to companies – the platinum package with donations of RM50,000 and above; gold package (between RM30,000 and RM49,999); silver package (between RM10,000 and RM29,999); bronze package (between RM1,000 and RM9,999); and 'ikhlas' package (between RM100 and RM999).
"By sponsoring the food, they will help the ani
Bowmanville Zoo staffer talks PETA allegations
Efforts to raise money to help rehome about 300 animals at the Bowmanville Zoo has received backlash online.
Plans to hold a special fundraising event featuring members of Justin Bieber’s family on Aug. 28 were altered after the zoo said PETA and its supporters on social media lashed out at the pop star and his father Jeremy.
“PETA called Jeremy and bombarded him and people sent him mean messages,” explained Alex Haditaghi, a spokesman for the zoo. “He rescinded his RSVP and we understand why he had to do that.”
Despite a change of plans, the event originally called Bieber Family Fun Day was held.
Visitors to the zoo were treated to a free BBQ and a chance to get up close with several baby big cats.
Madison Thompson, 21, an animal handler, took young white lion cub Alex around the grounds for guests to see. She was often caught snuggling up to the cub, kissing him and giving him extra treats.
A self-described animal lover, Ms. Thompson said if the allegations People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) made against Bowmanville Zoo co-owner Michael Hackenberger were true, “I wouldn’t work here.” She has been employed by the zoo since she was 15.
An undercover video posted online in December 2015 by PETA allegedly shows Mr. Hackenberger whipping a tiger during a training session. Also seen in that video, with her face blurred out, is Ms. Thompson.
In an effort to clear up some of the confusion and criticism, Ms. Thompson decided to share her story for the first time with durhamregion.com.
She said the woman who shot the footage came to the zoo as a volunteer. Ms. Thompson said Mr. Hackenberger and staff were told that she had a degree in animal behaviour and “she was intrigued with animal training.
Dreams of an African zoo north of Brisbane end as land listed for sale
IT was once earmarked as the future site of an African-inspired zoo, but that dream appears quashed with the prime northside site listed for sale for $27 million.
The 25.5ha site on Linkfield Rd, Bald Hills, has been owned by John Bowman for more than 30 years. Mr Bowman once harboured grand designs for the site — primarily the development of an African-inspired zoo.
Real estate agent and owner of RE/MAX A1 AJ Bakshi said there had already been a lot of interest in the land — which could potentially be sold in three smaller lots of 20 acres (8ha), 20 (8ha) a
One of the World’s Rarest Animals May Be on the Verge of Extinction in Iran
Only two female Asiatic cheetahs are known to be alive in the wild
The rare Asiatic cheetah, already severely endangered, may be in greater danger of extinction than ever before, as conservationists say only two females of the species are known to survive in the only country where it exists: Iran.
Only 40 Asiatic cheetahs remain in the wild, all of them in Iran, the Guardian reports. Conservationists worry that without an adequate female population, the
Oryx return to Chad thanks to UAE breeding programme
The scimitar-horned oryx has been brought back from extinction in the wilds of Chad thanks to the late Sheikh Zayed and the Abu Dhabi Environment Agency.
Repopulating the oryx, believed to have been poached to extinction in the wild 25 years ago, was one of the conservation passions of the UAE’s Founding Father.
As part of Ead’s reintroduction programme, 25 oryx bred in captivity in the UAE were released in the central African country and are being monitored by the Sahara Conservation Fund to see how they adapt to life in the wild.
"There have been no sightings for more than 25 years due to unregulated hunting, loss of habitat and lack of resources for conservation," said Razan Al Mubarak, secretary general of Ead.
"Leading the programme, which endeavours to reinstate a viable population of this majestic creature in its home range of Chad, is a dream come true."
The project will build a self-sustaining population by releasing between 300 and 500 oryx over the next five years.
The International Union of the Conservation of Nature listed the scimitar-horned oryx as extinct in the wild in 2000, although they are believed to have disappeared 10 years befoe that.
Since then, the animal, which naturally roams the sub-Saharan grasslands of Africa, from Senegal to Sudan, existed only in private collections.
One such collection was Sheikh Zayed’s oryx herd, which he decreed be protected in a wildlife reserve during his rule.
Ead’s task was to help transfer the oryx population, which today numbers 3,000 specimens, back to their endemic
Asiatic black bear donated from N. Korea dies
An Asiatic black bear, which came to South Korea in 1999 as a gift from North Korea, died of old age on Tuesday, according to Seoul Zoo, Wednesday. The bear, named Eutteumi, was presumed to be 20 years old.
She was one of the five Asiatic black bears inhabiting the zoo in Gwacheon, Gyeonggi Province.
The zoo said it will perform an autopsy to identify the exact cause of her death. The life expectancy of Asiatic black bears is usually 25 years.
The bear was a symbol of inter-Korean cultural exchanges as the two Koreas exchanged wild, native animals in 1999. North Korea donated Eutteumi and a male bear to the South as a gift along with a tiger, red foxes and silver foxes.
Eutteumi, which was presumed to be three years old when she arrived, was blind when she got here.
During her time at the zoo, she had six cubs, two each in 2006, 2009 and 2011. One has been living with her at the zoo, while the other five were sent to Mt. Jiri for the National Park Service's project to recover the habitat for the bears. As the bears on the mountain have bred in the wild, there are now 44 bears c
What should we do about the 15,000 Asian elephants still in captivity?
Nearly one in three Asian elephants live in captivity – about 15,000 in all. The existence of such large captive population of this endangered, intelligent, and long-living animal poses a number of ethical and practical challenges, but also some opportunities.
Asian elephants, like most land-based megafauna, are endangered and might not survive in the wild beyond the 21st century. As the largest terrestrial animals, elephants are very important for the health of tropical ecosystems – they are like forest gardeners who plant, fertilise and prune trees.
Asian elephants are also remarkable in their cultural significance. They may have been tamed as far back as 6,000 BC, and elephants have since been used for warfare, transport, and as status symbols. They’ve sometimes even been worshipped as deities. Even nowadays, people in countries such as India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand venerate elephants in a way that is difficult for outsiders to understand.
It is because of the cultural significance of Asian elephants that so many of them live in captivity (African elephants can and used to be tamed but, for comparison, only one in 700 currently live in captivity). Unlike dogs, horses, or pigs, elephants are not domestic animals, in the sense that we (humans) do not control their breeding. The large majority of captive elephants were born in the wild and eventually capture
Miles the dibbler marks milestone for Perth Zoo breeding program
A species once thought to be extinct, the Western Australian dibbler, has reached a milestone, with Perth Zoo weaning its 1,000th baby under a repopulation program.
The zoo has been working since 1997 to re-establish numbers of the tiny marsupial in WA, after introduced predators and habitat loss saw their populations severely dwindle.
Zookeeper Lesley Shaw said staff did not normally name baby dibblers but they made an exception for the 1,000th, naming him Miles.
"It's always very exciting when you get to a milestone