Category Archives: Wildlife

Action Alert! Chance the chimpanzee in Wolf of Wall Street

In the upcoming movie Wolf of Wall Street, Leonardo DiCaprio is seen holding an infant chimpanzee, Chance. this is especially disappointing because Mr. DiCaprio is known for his passion for animal conservation—most recently he supported conservation efforts to save tigers in Nepal.

Animal advocacy groups have contacted Mr. DiCaprio and the movie producers; however, our efforts to reach out have not resulted in Chance’s scenes getting removed from the movie. Now it is time for the public to speak up!Chance on set

Chance was once a pet, and his previous owners discarded him to a pseudo-sanctuary called the Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary. The animal attraction claims to be a reserve for animals, but they regularly exploit their residents for entertainment purposes. In fact, Chance’s owners (the Rosaire-Zoppe family) are the only remaining trainers who continue to use chimpanzees in circuses. No respectable reserve or animal sanctuary would lease out their animals for media productions such as this movie.

Even if the AHA was present for filming, they have no authority over Chance’s treatment off-set, making the “no animals were harmed” disclaimer misleading.

Portraying chimpanzees as cute and cuddly attractions seriously misinforms the public on the true nature of these beings and perpetuates the pet and entertainment industries. Studies have shown that showing chimpanzees alongside humans in film and TV mask their endangered status, and these scenes hurt conservation efforts.

Despite hearing these facts from advocacy groups, the Wolf of Wall Street producers have not removed Chance’s scenes from the movie, which will be released on December 25. We encourage you to please post on the movie’s poster on their Facebook page and Twitter to let them know that because of the issues with Chance’s scenes you will not be going to see the movie, and you will tell all your friends to boycott it with you.

Sample Facebook Post:

I’m boycotting Wolf of Wall Street because of the chimpanzee scenes! Even Hollywood knows that abuse occurs when animals are used in movies (hollywoodreporter.com/feature). Chimpanzees don’t belong in movies unless they are CGI. Chimpanzees are an endangered species and showing them as cute and cuddly props hurts conservation efforts and perpetuates the pet trade.

Sample Tweets:

Pls RT! Join @EyesOnApes and tell @LeoDiCaprio chimps should not be in movies & you won’t see @TheWolfofWallSt!

RT! @LeoDiCaprio I will boycott @TheWolfofWallSt because of Chance’s scenes. Chimps do not belong in movies! EyesOnApes.org

Don’t support animal abuse. Refuse to see @LeoDiCaprio in @TheWolfofWallSt and tell all your friends. EyesOnApes.org Pls RT!

The final thing you can do to help Chance is to spread the word! Please share this alert on social media and encourage your friends to boycott the movie with you.

~ reposted from Eyes on Apes ~

Have your say about the Seattle Parks zoo assignment

Woodland Park Zoo Elephant logo

Very soon, a new Seattle City Council Chair of Parks will be selected. The Parks Chair oversees Woodland Park Zoo. Bamboo, Chai and Watoto are the three elephants who have lived 45, 33 and 43 years, respectively, on display at the Zoo. They need a council member who is concerned about their welfare to be the next Parks Chair.

Please ask Sally Clark (City Council President), Ed Murray (the Mayor-elect) and the other City Council members to choose a City Council member who will work with the Zoo to retire the elephants to a sanctuary in a warmer climate with hundreds of acres to roam.

Contacts:
mayoraltransition@seattle.gov
Sally.Clark@seattle.gov
Sally.Bagshaw@seattle.gov
Tim.Burgess@seattle.gov
Richard.Conlin@seattle.gov
Bruce.Harrell@seattle.gov
Nick.Licata@seattle.gov
Tom.Rasmussen@seattle.gov
Mike.OBrien@seattle.gov

What you might want to know:

The Zoo-appointed Task Force’s recommendations should not be used to determine the elephants’ fate. Their bias was clear, with 5 out of the 14 being current or former Zoo Board members and many others having a clear conflict of interest. The Zoo Board will make their decision about Bamboo, Chai and Watoto’s future early next year.

Friends of WPZ Elephants commissioned a survey using Research Now, an independent research company. The findings debunk the Zoo’s cherished catchphrase and the Task Force’s justification for keeping the elephants: That seeing an elephant will inspire people “to learn, care and act to help conserve elephants and their habitats in the wild.”

NOT SO—NOT EVEN CLOSE:

  • 97% of survey respondents knew about elephant poaching for their ivory. They learned about this crisis from print and media—not from Woodland Park Zoo.
  • 88% of people who saw the elephants at the Zoo didn’t change to whom they donate or products that they buy.

Our wet and cold climate is wrong for elephants. It forces Bamboo, Chai and Watoto to be locked up in a tiny, barren stall for 16 to 17 hours a day for over half of the year. It’s like you being locked up in a broom closet.
Watoto in a box

Please write a polite email asking for the new Parks Chair to be someone who will work with Woodland Park Zoo to retire Bamboo, Chai and Watoto to a sanctuary so they may have a humane quality of life.

Thanks so much,
Nancy Pennington and Alyne Fortgang
Co-founder, Friends of Woodland Park Zoo Elephants
A NARN Campaign
206-595-7770

Please join us on Facebook

Spaceless in Seattle — heartbreak at Woodland Park Zoo

Billy the chimpanzee featured on Chelsea Lately

EOA_take_action

Many of you might have seen that a chimpanzee named Billy was on the show Chelsea Lately last week. Billy was seen rocking and showing his top teeth–a clear sign of distress. The show said they would have Billy back the next night, and despite hearing from thousands of people to please not air Billy again, they went ahead with the segment anyway.

We want to continue to put pressure on the show and on Chelsea Handler, the host of the show. Not only are there numerous welfare concerns, but seeing chimpanzees alongside humans perpetuates the pet trade.

Studies also show that since chimpanzees are so prevalent in media, people aren’t aware of their endangered status. Please speak up for Billy and all chimpanzees still used in entertainment and ask Chelsea to issue a mea culpa about Billy’s appearance and promise to never use apes on her production again.

Please send a polite letter to her, c/o Tom Brunelle, letting her know that chimps like Billy should not be used in entertainment.

You may send your letter to Chelsea Handler c/o Tom Brunelle at tom@borderlineamazing.com

Sample Letter to Chelsea Lately:

[Date]
Dear Ms. Handler:

I was disappointed to hear that Chelsea Lately had Billy the chimpanzee on the show, and despite hearing from concerned advocates, aired a second appearance by Billy. You should know that great apes used in entertainment are torn away from their mothers as infants, often repeatedly beaten during training, and then discarded when they become too strong to be managed.

Using a chimpanzee for a cheap laugh sends the message that these amazing beings are simply props. Surely you are aware that chimpanzees are endangered species in critical need of protection?

Please make the compassionate decision to issue a mea culpa for airing Billy’s segments two nights in a row, and pledge to never exploit great apes for entertainment purposes again. Thank you for your consideration of my comments on this urgent matter.

Sincerely,
[Your name here]
[Your city & state]

If you send an e-mail to Chelsea, please BCC Eyes on Apes at EyesOnApes@ChimpsNW.org for tracking purposes. Thank you!

~reposted on behalf of Eyes on Apes~

Michigan: Lie, Cheat and Steal Your Way to Wolf Hunting

In December of last year, Michigan state politicians rushed a ‘lame duck’ bill through the House and Senate designating wolves a “game” species (i.e., an animal that can be hunted) and authorizing an open season on wolves. Governor Snyder signed it into law. It was already legal to kill wolves in order to protect dogs or livestock, and there is no scientific reason to hunt and trap them — the ONLY reason is for the “fun” of a small minority of hunters evidently lacking the gene responsible for empathy.

However, as you may remember reading here earlier this year, a coalition of different groups and citizens called Keep Michigan’s Wolves Protected quickly collected far more signatures than were necessary to put the issue of whether to allow wolf hunting on the November ballot. This meant that the citizens — not the politicians or a few wealthy special-interest groups — would decide the fate of the 650-odd wolves in the state. Michigan politicians responded by quickly passing another law giving the Natural Resources Commission the authority to designate wolves (and any other animals) “game animals”. Because the NRC is a regulatory body and not a legislative one, Michigan voters would be powerless to reverse their decisions.

Keep Michigan Wolves Protected is currently circulating a petition (unfortunately only for Michigan voters, but here is the link in case you know anyone there: http://keepwolvesprotected.com/sign) to place a referendum of this new law on the ballot. Last week, reporter John Barnes and a team of other investigative reporters from the state’s top newspapers blew the whistle on a conspiracy hatched by a lying farmer, state lawmakers, and the state Department of Natural Resources. The director of Keep Michigan Wolves Protected, Jill Fritz (also HSUS’ state director) has asked Governor Rick Snyder to block the hunt scheduled to begin November 15th, since its entire rationale was corrupt, based on fabricated reports of wolves hanging around a daycare center and appearing in people’s back yards, and incidents of wolf depredation on a single farm whose owner baited the wolves to begin with, for the sake of financial reimbursement. In addition, after soliciting public feedback on the wolf hunt, the Natural Resources Commission ignored and deleted more TEN THOUSAND of the anti-hunting emails they received.

Does this corruption shock you? It shouldn’t. These are people who want to subject wolves to the prolonged and atrocious suffering caused by shooting, bowhunting and trapping. What is lying, cheating and stealing compared to that?

 

Contact Amazon About Kopi Luwak Coffee

Kopi Luwak coffee, marketed by Amazon, is made from coffee beans that are fed to Asian civets (small, cat-like mammals) and then excreted. The civets are hunted and captured in the wild and then imprisoned alone in tiny, barren cages. They’re deprived of everything: freedom, space, companions, even their real food. They bite at the cage bars, turn in circles, and go insane from being imprisoned with no escape. Without adequate nutrition, they begin to lose their fur. All of this cruelty is just for a novelty coffee sold by companies such as Amazon.com.

A PETA Asia investigator visited civet coffee farms in Indonesia and the Philippines, two of the world’s top producers of kopi luwak. Undercover footage from these farms shows sick, depressed civets suffering from infections and exhibiting signs of zoochosis, a stress–induced neurotic condition that causes captive animals to spin, pace, and bob their heads in constant frantic displays of frustration.While kopi luwak is often advertised as “wild–sourced,” farmers told the investigator that it would be nearly impossible to produce exclusively wild–sourced civet coffee and that the industry knowingly mislabels coffee from captive animals. At two farms, the investigator was told that they “didn’t have a problem” with putting a “100% wild–sourced” or similar label on coffee from caged civets. You can watch a PETA video below.

Please leave comments about this cruelly produced coffee on Amazon.com. People OFTEN read comments before buying products, and most have no idea of the inherent cruelty involved in this coffee production. AND contact Jeff Bezos directly at Jeff@amazon.com.

 

L.A. BANS BULLHOOKS!

TODAY, Wednesday 23rd, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed an ordinance banning the use of bullhooks on circus elephants.

“(Elephants) are trained and guided with bullhooks, which are used to inflict pain upon them and sometimes cut them when they’re hit,” said Councilman Paul Koretz. “We really want to change that. We think it’s a very cruel practice.” Of course, the ban on bullhooks means that circuses, traveling shows and other events that feature elephants would not be able to perform anywhere in the city, because the bullhook is how the handlers maintain control. A spokesman for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, says the ban was being driven by animal rights activists who want to force the circus out of the city.

UNFORTUNATELY, the ban allows for a three-year phase-in period — some of which will no doubt be used by the circuses trying to find a replacement for the bullhook. Presciently, the ban already includes baseball bats, axe handles and pitchforks. No mention of electric cattle prods, though.

Congratulations, L.A.!

ACT to End the Namibian Seal Slaughter

Namibia seal slaughter

Thought the Canadians were the only ones? Nope. (Just as the Japanese are the most well-known dolphin/whale killers, although the Danish Faroe Islanders do it too.)

The Namibian government continues to allow and promote the slaughter of Cape fur seals despite the fact that the population has been hard-hit already by three mass die-offs, in which seals starved to death by the tens of thousands, since 2000. Cape fur seal pups are born between late October and early January. The mother seals nurse their young for about a year or even longer.
For 140 days, staring around July 1st, the Namibian government permits the killing of about 85,000 nursing baby Cape Fur seals…on the pretext of creating employment for 120 unskilled workers living in cardboard shacks near the seal colony.

Send letters to Prime Minister Dr. Hage Geingob at Office of the Prime Minister, Windhoek, Namibia. He can also be called/faxed (he speaks fluent English) at

Tel: +264-61-287 2002
Fax: +264-61-24 9546

You can also write to Hatem Yavuz, the furrier responsible for buying the Namibian fur, here:

http://www.harpseals.org/help/letters_and_emails/hatem_yavuz.php

 

TELL AQUARIUMS THEIR DIRTY SECRET IS OUT

There are 50 marine parks in Japan, housing about FIVE HUNDRED dolphins, almost all captured during violent and deadly drive hunts. Many of these Japanese dolphinariums are members of JAZA, the Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquariums. The infamous Taiji Whale Museum, which has become the Japanese brokering facility for dolphins captured during the drive hunt, is a member of JAZA. So are numerous other Japanese dolphinariums that take advantage of the dolphin massacres to obtain dolphins.Thus, JAZA members keep the brutal dolphin hunt alive by doing business with the dolphin killers, This should not come as any surprise to you, since zoos and aquariums rarely act FOR animals, but it may surprise you that already in 2005, the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) issued a statement entitled “WAZA Members not to Purchase Dolphins from Drive Fisheries”. It opposed the Japanese dolphin hunt in no uncertain terms, instructing its members to “adhere to the WAZA Code of Ethics and Animal Welfare [ha!] and to ensure that they do not accept animals obtained by the use of methods which are inherently cruel.” The statement continues: “In a resolution adopted at the WAZA …it was clearly stated that the catching of dolphins by the use of a method known as “drive fishing” is considered an example of such a non acceptable capture method.”

On its website, WAZA says: “All members of the WAZA Network are obliged to comply with WAZA’s Code of Ethics and Animal Welfare.” And: “Failure to satisfy or adhere to the Bylaws, Code of Ethics and all other rules and regulations shall be sufficient cause for suspension or denial of membership.”

And yet, WAZA welcomes JAZA, its Japanese counterpart, as an association member. 

So…WAZA has the power to document, expose and stop the world’s largest dolphin slaughter. More than 600 million people walk through the gates of the WAZA Network each year; ALL of them could be reached with a message to stop the dolphin slaughter. After all, the world’s dolphinariums claim that they capture and confine dolphins in order to educate the public to the various threats that dolphins face in nature. If the world’s largest network of zoos and aquariums is not going to educate the public to the largest slaughter of dolphins in the world – then W T F  ARE they doing??

(This entire issue does not even take into account that the conditions for dolphins in many of the ‘accredited’ marine parks are so dreadful as to be a living death.)

So while WAZA’s actions — or lack of action — may not surprise you, it WILL surprise them to get a flood of letters from angry and disgusted people who know what is going on. Please, be one of them.

Dr. Gerald Dick, Executive Director
World Association of Zoos and Aquariums
IUCN Conservation Centre
Rue Mauverney 28
CH-1196 Gland
Switzerland
fax: +41 (0)22 999 07 91
online contact form

SAMPLE LETTER

Dr. Dick:

I am asking you to take action against those member aquariums of WAZA that continue to purchase dolphins and small whales that are caught in dolphin drive hunts such as the one in Taiji, Japan. According to your own statements, these aquariums should be expelled from WAZA, including member groups of JAZA, the regional association member of WAZA.

As you very well know but choose to overlook, hundreds, if not thousands, of dolphins are ruthlessly slaughtered each year in these barbaric hunts. Despite their grandiose claims, aquariums and dolphin brokers actually HELP the dolphin killers in their work, paying the fishermen high prices for a few live dolphins, and condemning the rest to horrific deaths. Thus WAZA and the world aquarium industry subsidizes the killing of dolphins in Taiji. Please take steps now to end the hunts. Because you can.

Sincerely,

 

URGENT: CONTACT THE US FISH&WILDLIFE SERVICE RE WOLVES

It was not many decades ago that America’s wolves had been hunted and trapped to the brink of extinction. Even now, the estimated 6,000 remaining wolves occupy less than 5% of their historic range, yet the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has already announced plans to remove all federal protection from them, stripping them of endangered species protection in the lower 48 states and turning management over to the individual states  – most of which consider trapping, hounding and aerial gunning perfectly acceptable. This plan to delist wolves would allow increased hunting quotas driven by political pressure from trophy-hunters, trapping organizations, and ranchers.

The US Fish & Wildlife Service is now accepting public comments on this proposal. We ask you to send yours TODAY, and ask them NOT to remove federal protection from wolves:

Snow Leopards Have Surprising Protectors

The snow leopard is listed as globally endangered because its effective population size (the number of individuals likely to reproduce) is believed to be less than 2,500. However, a recent report in the journal Conservation Biology shows it has some very unexpected protectors: Buddhist monks.

Leopards

About 60% of the leopards live in the high regions of China, where their thick fur keeps them warm.  However, they are also targeted by the Chinese for this fur, as well as for their internal organs, which are used in traditional Chinese medicine (along with parts of MANY other animals, endangered and otherwise). As a result, the snow leopard population has dropped by about 20% in the last two decades.
Because of Buddhism’s basic tenet of respect and compassion for all living beings, several conservation organizations began working with four monasteries in the region of the Tibetan plateau in 2009, training monks to protect wildlife. Now, thousands of monks from hundreds of monasteries patrol the wilderness to prevent the killing of snow leopards. In fact, far more leopards are protected by Buddhist monks in Tibet than in the specific areas set aside for their protection. The monks also teach the local people that killing them is wrong. In recent household surveys, most people say they do not kill wildlife, citing Buddhism’s nonviolence as their reasoning.
So….since about 80% of the people within the snow leopards’ natural range do practice Tibetan Buddhism, there are plans to expand these programs even further.
Great to see religion as a force to help animals for a change.