Thursday, September 29, 2016

Animal Crime and Animal Cruelty Weekly Report

Join the Harvard Law School Animal Law & Policy Program for The Animal Welfare Act at Fifty Conference.

When: Dec. 2, 2016 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

Where: Harvard Law School, Wasserstein Hall, 2nd Floor
1585 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02138

Register here.

The Human Role in Wildlife Trafficking. Reducing consumer demand may be the most effective way to stop wildlife trafficking. It’s hard to overstate just how enormous a problem wildlife trafficking is.

Along with drug, arms, and human trafficking, it is among the largest illegal trades in the world, estimated at up to $20 billion a year. Its impact reaches every corner of the earth, taking elephants from the plains of Africa and lizards from the cloud forests of Central America, pulling rare frogs from their leafy hideouts and sharks from oceans around the globe. Each year, millions of wild animals are brought into captivity as pets, sacrificed for style, killed for food or supposed medicinal purposes, and much more.

It would be easy to lay blame on a select few: The poachers who take these animals from the wild, the smugglers who sneak their products into other countries, or even the restaurants, pet stores, boutiques and other shops that sell the final product. But taking down one poacher, smuggler, or seller won’t put an end to this devastating trade. The biggest threat…is the rest of us.

It’s the everyday consumer. The people who buy that lovely tortoiseshell decoration for their home without realizing it was once the actual shell of a critically endangered sea turtle. Or that fish oil supplement that actually has ingredients from endangered hammerhead sharks. Or that pet bird “raised in captivity” that was actually taken from its nest as a chick and smuggled across the border. The best way to end overexploitation of wildlife for trade is by stopping the demand. If we all stop buying, they will stop selling.

That’s a great thought overall, but just saying that won’t get us there. Now, the United States is presenting a draft resolution at the upcoming CITES meeting to actually doing something about it.

This draft resolution takes aim at reducing the demand for wildlife trafficking wherever there is a market for it in any of the 183 nations that have signed on to CITES. Here’s some of what it would require the governments of those countries to do:

Be proactive. Develop strategies to reduce the demand for illegally traded wildlife goods within their borders.

Make new rules, and give them teeth. Enact new policies, legislation, and law enforcement initiatives to support this effort.

Find out what’s driving the demand on your home soil. Conduct in-depth and regular research on the demand for illegally traded species so that the agencies involved can attack the problem at the root.

Be specific enough to be effective. Instead of only raising general awareness of the issue, create species-specific campaigns that address the demand for and impact of the trade. Give consumers an idea of exactly what goes into not just some kind of product, but a specific product they use, and how it impacts a specific species.

If this draft resolution is adopted – and our team has been working hard to gather support for it, and will continue to do so at the CITES meeting – then every nation that is a party to the CITES treaty will have to follow it.

Wildlife trafficking is a global crime, but the U.S. is certainly one of its most major players. We are one of the top consumers of several types of wildlife products, and a key hub for wildlife products destined for markets all over the world. In fact, illegal wildlife products come into the U.S. from 214 different countries and territories. That means that if we can address the problem here, it could benefit wildlife everywhere.

So wish us luck in supporting this important draft resolution at CITES! Hopefully with this effort, we can get more countries cracking down on the demand for illegal wildlife products within their borders, including our own. In the meantime, there are also steps you can take at home to make a big difference for wildlife:
Raise Awareness: Spread the word about the role the U.S. plays in wildlife trafficking to your family, friends and community.

Ask Questions: Always ask where a product is coming from. Anything from seafood, to pets, to clothing products can be part of how wildlife is exploited. The more questions we ask as consumers, the more accountable producers and sellers will need to be.
Stay Informed: Learn more about how the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works against illegal trade, and what our team at Defenders is doing to fight wildlife trafficking. We’ll keep you updated when opportunities come up to get involved.

Together, we can make a real difference for the sharks, frogs, parrots, sea turtles and other wildlife that are exploited for this illegal and devastating trade.

Petitioning U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, President of the United States. Investigate the Wild Horse & Burro Count in Captivity and in Freedom
Demand an Urgent Congressional Investigation and Head Count of all Wild Horses and Burros in Captivity and in the Wild
Secret documents reveal the plot from 2008 to kill and dispose of America’s wild horses and burros. Read the documents here:
Then on September 9, 2016, the Bureau of Land Management's Wild Horse & Burro Advisory Board voted to kill the alleged 45,000 wild horses in taxpayer funded holding facilities and pastures. Do they want to cover-up the fraud that has been going on for years by killing the evidence?
Taxpayers and the general public want to know:
  • How much fraud has been committed regarding the wild horse and burro count on public land and in corrals?
  • How many budgets were approved using fraudulent information?
  • How many wild horses have gone to slaughter?
  • How many wild horses and burros have been shot and killed?
  • How many unbranded foals did the kill-buyers get to sell overseas?
We request an immediate Congressional investigation and independent head count, with photo IDs, of the alleged 45,000 wild horses and burros rounded up and held in captivity--at taxpayer expense.
In addition, we call for an immediate moratorium on roundups, transport and removals for a precise independent count, with photo ID, of all the federally protected wild horses and burros in the wild. This must occur before any more wild horses or burros are rounded up and/or transported, trapped, chipped, collared, removed, sterilized, given pesticide PZP, GonaCon®, SpayVac, IUDs, etc., researched or experimented on in any manner to prevent further fraud against taxpayers as well as prevent abuse against wild horses and burros who should be protected from harassment and abuse by law.
We request a complete inventory of American wild horses and burros at the following locations:
  1. Every Herd Management Area
  2. Every Herd Area
  3. Every "Complex"
  4. Every temporary holding facility
  5. Every short-term holding facility
  6. Every long-term holding facility, pasture, eco-sanctuary, etc.
  7. Mustang Heritage Foundation facilities and all equids in their program
  8. TIP Trainers' facilities
  9. All private contractors' facilities
  10. Research facilities
  11. Any other locations where wild horses and burros are held in captivity and/or live on public land.
The public, voters of America and taxpayers are outraged and demand immediate action.

Puppy Farming – 10 Years of FOUR PAWS

2 wild horses escaped death at roundup. Last week Anne Novak, founder and director of Protect Mustangs, reached out to U.S. Forest Service staff with an offer to help find homes for any wild horses rounded up with pre-existing conditions--who would be killed--not offered a chance at adoption. Tonight Novak received the first call from Forest Service staff.

“It’s always bothered me that after wild horses heal from injuries and survive in the wild, they are chased by helicopters, rounded up and killed upon capture because they don’t seem like they would get adopted,” says Novak. “Some people don’t want a riding horse. Some people want to save a life.”

Read more here:

Please share this petition every day so together we can turn this around!

From the Team at Protect Mustangs

Protect Mustangs
P.O. Box 5661
Berkeley, CA 94705

Protect Mustangs is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of native and wild horses.
Bears Crying Out for Help
For a bear PETA's investigator named Doudou, "training" meant being yanked by her neck and forced to walk on parallel bars, sometimes on just her front paws. If she stopped or made even the smallest mistake, she was struck with a stick. When she wasn't being forced to perform, she could often be found pawing and biting at the bars of the cramped, barren cage she was confined to, crying out desperately for someone—anyone—to stop her abuse.
Her cries—like those of the many bears, tigers, monkeys, and other animals our eyewitness found in 10 different circuses and animal training facilities across China—were simply ignored by trainers, who saw Doudou and other animals like her as little more than another circus "attraction" to be coerced into performing ridiculous and often painful tricks through fear, intimidation, and violence.
The abuse PETA has exposed at Chinese circus training facilities is heartbreaking. In addition to Doudou, the eyewitness documented that bear cubs were tightly strung up by their necks and forced to stand on their hind legs—sometimes for hours on end—at the risk of choking or hanging themselves. Young lion cubs were found quivering in fear, and tigers were seen being violently whipped and beaten with heavy metal poles to force them to jump through hoops and balance on balls. The eyewitness found terrified monkeys grimacing, struggling against neck chains, defecating in fear, and attempting to escape from their handlers. In every circus inspected by PETA, animals lacked adequate food, drinking water, housing, and veterinary care.
The abuse documented in this groundbreaking investigation isn't just the result of notoriously weak Chinese animal-protection laws. In circuses everywhere, animals are routinely kept in chains and confined to cramped cages. The use of fear and punishment to force animals to perform—much like what was discovered in China—is common practice among circuses that exploit animals around the world.
But with your help, we can work to change that.
This latest exposé has done more than reveal the heavy chains, frequent beatings, and constant fear of abuse that circuses use to control the animals they hold captive: It's also inspired tens of thousands of people around the world to pledge never, ever to buy a ticket to any circus that uses animals.
Our circus investigation is even beginning to have an impact in China, where we have now become the top international charity on Sina Weibo, the biggest social-networking site in that country. Footage from the investigation has been seen by millions, and just last week, the largest English-language newspaper in Eastern China—Shanghai Daily—ran a story on the tremendous social media response to this case.
Across China and around the world, calls to shut down circuses that abuse and exploit animals are growing louder. Governments in France, the U.K., and elsewhere are seeing new pressure to follow the lead of Israel, Mexico, the Netherlands, and other countries by banning wild-animal acts, and more and more families are refusing to buy tickets to any circus with animals.
Your generous gift today will immediately strengthen PETA's vital work for all animals, including those who are being abused for human entertainment right now.
Donate Now

Support Congressional Bill H.R.752 - Condemning the Yulin Dog Meat Festival #EndYulin2017

Sign this petition to show support for Congressman Alcee L. Hastings introduced H.Res.752, a BIPARTISAN resolution, which condemns the Yulin festival and urges China to end the dog meat trade.
Hastings said "The international dog meat trade is morally reprehensible, Quite plainly its an abomination.”
Over fifteen thousands dogs and cats, mostly pets for loving families who were stolen, end up in Yulin for their yearly festival. These innocent Dogs and Cats are burned, boiled; or skinned...ALIVE. All because the festival participants' twisted belief that physical torture yields better tasting meat.
The more support Congressman Alcee L. Hastings can show his fellow congress members, the better chance of H.R.752 passing and putting needed pressure on China to step up and do the right thing and finally end the slaughter of innocent dogs and cats.
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