Wednesday, October 26, 2011

SeaWorld sued for slavery

According to an Associated Press report, PETA has just filed suit in federal court against SeaWorld stating that the Marine Park is in violation of the 13th Amendment for “enslaving its five performing whales,” by claiming that while the Amendment prohibits slavery and involuntary servitude, “it does not specify that only humans can be victims.”

While SeaWorld has denounced the move as baseless, PETA’s general counsel, Jeff Kerr contended that plaintiffs orcas, Tilikum and Katina based at SeaWorld in Orlando, Fla., and Corky, Kasatka and Ulises at SeaWorld San Diego “were kidnapped from their homes, kept confined, denied everything that's natural to them and forced to perform tricks for SeaWorld's profit,"  In addition Kerr stated that "the males have their sperm collected, the females are artificially inseminated and forced to bear young which are sometimes shipped away."

The lawsuit asks the court to order the orcas released to the custody of a legal guardian who would find a "suitable habitat" for them, and alleges “that captivity in the ‘barren tanks’ of a marine park suppresses the orcas' abilities and relationships, and subjects them to stress. This sometimes leads to instances where the orcas injure themselves, other orcas or humans that interact with them.”

Read the full article here.

I think this is ridiculous and way over the top. The animals live arguably live a better life at SeaWorld than they would in the wild. I like to think SeaWorld does more good than harm. Aren't there better business to sue? How about those sea food companies killing thousands of wild dolphins and whales?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Update: 49 Loose Exotic Animals Killed in Ohio

Forty-nine animals are killed and six were rescued after the owner of an animal preserve released his exotic animals and killed himself. It played out Tuesday evening at the 73-acre Muskingum County Animal Farm at 270 Kopchak Road in Zanesville. Deputies found wild and exotic animals on the loose and the farm's owner dead in the driveway from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

A news conference is scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday. NBC4 and will provide live coverage on-air and online.

Officials said the owner, Terry Thompson, opened pens and cages before he committed suicide.

The farm housed animals including Bengal tigers, mountain lions, grizzly and black bears, primates and wolves. A total of 56 animals escaped. Six black bears, two grizzly bears, nine male lions, eight lionesses, one baboon, three mountain lions, 18 tigers and two wolves were killed by authorities.

Six animals were caught and transported to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium: one grizzly bear, three leopards and two macaques (a breed of monkey).

One animal remains loose: a monkey that is carrying the Herpes B virus. According to Jack Hanna, the director emeritus of the Columbus zoo who was working with the emergency communications group, the monkey may have been eaten by another animal. Officials are still asking the public to be on the lookout for the monkey. Consultants recommended to law enforcement that the monkey be shot and killed. The Herpes B virus is not harmful to the monkey but is considered extremely dangerous to humans. A bite wound by the monkey would be considered very dangerous.

"I'm sorry for what happened to these animals. But also for what could have happened to people. Let's hope this never has to happen again in any state. This is a tragedy for the animal world. It could have been a bigger tragedy for the human world," Hanna said.
"You cannot run from it. It doesn't see you as a human. It sees you as something fleeing, or something to play with," Hanna said.

There also were horses also being kept on the farm and officials said Wednesday afternoon that some of the wild animals were charging at the horses when deputies arrived.

Hanna said the animals that were captured will go into quarantine before being brought into the zoo.
The Columbus zoo reached out to other zoos for possible placement, but the animals still belong to Thompson's wife legally.

The zoo called in extra security after reports of death threats from people who are pro-animal rights. The Zanesville Chamber of Commerce also received a few emailed threats. The Wilds, a conservation center in Zanesville, was helping out as well, Hanna said. No human injuries were reported.
Schools in the area were closed at the recommendation of Lutz Wednesday. Lutz said he would recommend to districts that they can open school for Thursday.

Someone attempted to steal the carcass of one of the big cats Tuesday night. The animal was recovered, and the person was taken into police custody. Charges will be filed, the sheriff said.
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Sunday, October 16, 2011

Baby Animals at The Wilds

October turned out to be a GREAT time to visit the Wilds in Cumberland, Ohio. There were numerous baby animals out and about at the safari wild animal park. The star of the show and one of the cutest animals I've ever seen was a Southern White Rhinoceros calf which was born on October 2nd, less than two weeks ago! This is the second 4th-generation calf born at The Wilds.

 They also had four baby Persian Onagers (at least, might have been a fifth one), two baby Fringed-Ear Oryx, a baby Rothschild's Giraffe, and a baby Grevy's Zebra. Check out the pictures and stay tuned for more updates from the Wilds!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Update from the Cleveland Zoo

Cleveland Zoo News

The two new Grizzley bear cubs from Wyoming (Cheyenne and Jackson) have joined the two from Montana (Cody and Cooper). A baby capybara was born too. We'll have to go soon to see these new additions!

I've got some great pictures to share from the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and I will hopefully be visiting the Wilds for the first time this year this weekend. Let's hope the weather forecast isn't too bad!