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Link of the Week

i Aug 9th No Comments by

Pigs Peace Walk

News of Note

i Aug 9th Comments Off by

Judge Orders Protection for Wolves in 2 States
A federal judge ruled Thursday that gray wolves in Montana and Idaho must be given the same protections under the federal Endangered Species Act as their cousins in Wyoming.  Wolves in the two states were removed from protected federal status under regulations proposed during the Bush administration and put into effect after President Obama took office. Last season, about 250 wolves were killed in hunts in Montana and Idaho, and both states had increased the number of wolves that could be harvested in 2010.

Mexican Rodeo continues without steer tailing event
A Mexican rodeo went on as planned Sunday in Jefferson County, minus one event that caused a lot of controversy and resulted in charges of animal cruelty.  Promoters of the “steer-tailing” event called it off Friday after a public outcry about a July rodeo where sheriff’s deputies found the tails had been ripped off some cows and many had broken bones.  “Steer-tailing” takes place when a cowboy rides alongside a steer and tries to trip it to the ground using the steer’s tail.

At Vegans’ Weddings, Beef or Tofu?
As it turns out, the most political decision of Ms. Clinton’s wedding was not whether to invite James Carville. By choosing to have meat, she reignited a sensitive wedding-season debate among ethical eaters and the people who love them: To serve, or not to serve?

Chicken producers debate ‘natural’ label
A disagreement among poultry producers about whether chicken injected with salt, water and other ingredients can be promoted as “natural” has prompted federal officials to consider changing labeling guidelines.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture had maintained that if chicken wasn’t flavored artificially or preserved with chemicals, it could carry the word “natural” on the package.

California firm recalls 1 million pounds beef for e.coli
A  Modesto, California, meat company is recalling about one million pounds of ground beef patties and bulk ground beef after the meat was linked to seven illnesses from the e.coli 0157:H7 bacteria, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Friday.

USDA to Mandate Test and Hold
The U.S. Department of Agriculture will soon withhold the stamp of inspection until test samples come back negative…The new rule will apply to pathogens the agency defines as adulterants.

First Signs of Puberty Seen in Younger Girls
Increased rates of obesity  are thought to play a major role, because body fat can produce sex hormones. Some researchers also suspect that environmental chemicals that mimic the effects of estrogen may be speeding up the clock on puberty, but that idea is unproved.

Link of the Week

i Aug 3rd Comments Off by

Animals with Disabilities

News of Note

i Aug 3rd Comments Off by

With some sea-lion populations in swift decline, feds call for closing Aleutian fisheries
Endangered Steller’s sea lions are faring so poorly at the tip of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands that the Obama administration is calling for emergency commercial fishing closures for two prominent species: Atka mackerel and Pacific cod.

Animal rights group wants zoo to release elephant’s records
An animal advocacy group filed a complaint yesterday with the US Department of Agriculture after the death of a beloved 36-year-old elephant at the Southwick’s Zoo, according to officials from the organization.  In Defense of Animals is calling for the Mendon-based zoo to publicly release the medical records of Dondi, who died Wednesday, said Catherine Doyle, the group’s elephant campaign manager.

Catalonia Bans Bullfighting
Lawmakers in the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia voted to ban bullfighting on Wednesday, dealing the most significant blow so far to a tradition considered by many Spaniards to be an essential part of their cultural patrimony.

Feds may probe Southborough primate center after animal’s death
The federal government is weighing whether it will launch a formal probe into the practices of the New England Primate Research Center following the death of an animal there in June.  During a June 29 inspection, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services said it found the body of a primate on the floor of a cage that had been sent through a cage-washing system on June 9.

Obesity Rates Keep Rising, Troubling Health Officials
Americans are continuing to get fatter and fatter, with obesity  rates reaching 30 percent or more in nine states last year, as opposed to only three states in 2007, health officials reported on Tuesday.

URGENT: Ask the Seattle City Council not to increase the limit on Urban Chickens

i Aug 2nd No Comments by

(Note: the vote on this measure takes place at 2:00 pm Tuesday, August 3rd)

The Seattle Department of Planning and Development (DPD) is proposing code changes to support and encourage urban agriculture.

Please help local chickens by asking the Seattle City Council not to raise the limit on the number of chickens that may be kept in Seattle, and not to ban roosters. Animals—especially those viewed as a disposable food source—suffer terribly and needlessly at the hands of an ever-increasing number of inexperienced “urban farmers.”

Seattle Animal Shelter already takes in 20-30 unwanted roosters and some hens per year, and local area veterinarians are dealing with an increase in surrendered, sick urban hens from people who don’t want to pay vet bills for “food animals.” Approximately 80% of coop owners are already above the current limit. Raising it further may cause more over-population problems.

Let’s help the Seattle City Council keep compassion for animals in mind as they help improve the options for urban farmers in Seattle. (More information below.)

Please be sure to mention that you do not support raising the fowl limit from 3 to 8.

Contact:
Richard Conlin
richard.conlin@seattle.gov
Seattle City Council

You can learn more about the full measure at this link:
http://www.seattle.gov/dpd/Planning/UrbanAgriculture/Overview/

Issues:

  • Pens are often not predator proof: Dogs and raccoons will attack chickens, and raccoons can eat parts of them alive through wire fencing, without even entering the pen.
  • Feed attracts rodents: Poisoned rodents can in turn poison wildlife that eats them (such as birds).
  • Yard safety: Many yards are not fenced, allowing predators in and allowing chickens to roam the neighborhood
  • Health problems: Chickens can develop a number of health problems: feather mites, egg-laying issues (which may cause prolapse or infection), eye and head injuries (from pecking), foot infections (such as septic arthritis or bumblefoot, from poor surfaces or improper perches), pneumonia (from unclean or poorly ventilated coops).
  • Lack of veterinary care: People often buy chickens for eggs or meat to save money. When the birds get sick, their keepers are less willing to pay for expensive vet care.
  • Poor Feed: There is currently bad chicken feed circulating in Seattle, which has caused an increase in egg-laying issues in hens. Local farm coop feed is likely to blame–it is not nutritionally balanced for chickens, and it is not properly formulated into a pellet to provide even nutrition in every bite. (Bad feed is also being sold at Bothell Feed Center.)
  • Unwanted Roosters: Roosters are noisy, but they make up 50% of all eggs that are hatched. Hatcheries toss live male baby chicks into grinders to get rid of this “problem”, as most people only want hens. Banning roosters will only increase their suffering.

Action Alerts

i Jul 27th No Comments by

Ask American Airlines to STOP Sponsoring Rodeos
Ask American Airlines to STOP using their financial power to promote animal abuse at rodeos. They are currently sponsoring Cheyenne Frontier Days.

Contact:
Sean Bentel
Manager of customer relations at American Airlines
(817) 967-2116

Mark Mitchell
Managing director of customer experience at American Airlines
(817) 931-7523

for more information see this site

Ask Your Senator to Support the Latest Version of the Crush Video Prohibition Bill, H.R. 5566
Tell your Senator to vote YES on H.R. 5566. This Bill has recently passed the House. While not ideal, the goal of this bill is to put a stop to the crush video industry with a law that can withstand any First Amendment challenges.
This version of the bill differs from earlier versions because it includes a requirement that any depiction (photograph, motion-picture film, video recording, or electronic image showing conduct in which one or more living animals is intentionally crushed, burned, drowned, suffocated, or impaled) be “obscene,” not just cruel. It also has exemptions for veterinary and agricultural husbandry practices as well as depictions of hunting.

Contact your U.S. Senators.  Find them here

Support HR 5643 and Ban Predator Poisons
Tell your Congressional Representative to support HR5643, the DeFazio-Campbell bill that bans M-44s and Compound 1080, two legal methods that are used to poison our native wildlife.

Contact your U.S. Representative.  Find them here

Link of the Week

i Jul 27th No Comments by

Take 5 Save Five

News of Note

i Jul 27th No Comments by

Meat lovers may pack on the pounds over time
People who eat a lot of meat are more likely to gain weight, even if they’re consuming the same amount of calories as their less-carnivorous peers.  Dr. Anne-Claire Vergnaud of Imperial College London in the UK and her colleagues found that people who ate more meat gained more weight over 5 years than those who ate less meat, but the same amount of calories.  “Our results suggest that a decrease in meat consumption may improve weight management,” they wrote in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

“The Biggest Loser” Trainer Bob Harper Offers Advice On Vegan Lifestyle
What can we say? Every since hearing that The Biggest Loser trainer Bob Harper went vegan last year, we’ve been so insanely impressed with his outspoken behavior.

Animal-rights activist pleads guilty to contempt charge
The founder of an animal-rights group pleaded guilty Tuesday to contempt of court for refusing to testify about attacks on mink farms.  Jordan Halliday admitted he disobeyed an order by U.S. District Judge Tena Campbell to testify before a grand jury.  Prosecutors say Halliday either responded with “no comment” to most questions or involved a Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination to innocuous questions.


Traveling circus with history of animal rights abuses meets with ire in Okanagan
An American travelling circus troupe with a long history of animal rights violations is being criticized by B.C. animal lovers on the eve of its multi-stop tour through the Okanagan.  Opposition to the Jordan World Circus, billed as one of North America’s premier acts, has been particularly strong in Penticton, where residents have torn down signs ahead of the Aug. 1 show.

California dairy owners promote benefits of camel’s milk despite federal ban on sales in US
Gil and Nancy Riegler, owners of the nation’s largest camel dairy near San Diego in southern California, said the extra work pays off with milk that is therapeutic, nutritious and delicious.  It also is illegal to sell in the United States.   “If we could sell camel’s milk right now, we would have to charge $40 to $60 a litre,” said Nancy Riegler, who lives with her husband on their 34-acre (14-hectare) dairy in Ramona, northeast of San Diego. That is because there are only a few thousand camels in the United States, mostly at zoos and wild animal parks, and few of them are breeding, which makes camel milk a rare commodity.

Farm, food service jobs tied to heart disease risk
Americans in certain lines of work, including transportation, food service and farming, may have a relatively high rate of risk factors for heart disease, diabetes and stroke, a new study finds.

Recall issued for chicken nuggets sold at Walmart
Perdue Farms is recalling  nearly 92,000 pounds of chicken nuggets because of concern that a small number of them may contain pieces of plastic.  The nuggets are sold under the Great Value brand in Walmart stores in the United States.

Octopus discovery could lead to new drugs
Dr Fry’s team travelled to the Antarctic aboard the Australian Antarctic Division’s flagship Aurora Australis, collecting 203 octopuses over more than six weeks.  They then genetically profiled each specimen to identify the species and collected venom to analyse in the lab.  “There are minor differences which allow them to work and we still don’t know what those differences are.  “So we’re comparing them to octopus venom with similar enzymes from other species like the tropical blue-ringed octopus.”

US seeks to garnish wages of man who freed mink
Federal prosecutors are hoping to garnish the wages of a prominent animal rights activist who freed mink from Midwestern fur farms and has earned money giving speeches about the case.

Mike Tyson Tweets About Vegan Energy On Twitter
Iron Mike Tyson, or should we say Veggie Mike Tyson, recently joined Twitter and used the social networking service to tweet about the energy he is receiving from his vegan diet.

News of Note

i Jul 20th Comments Off by

Animal activists freed from terror charges
A federal judge has thrown out terrorism charges against four animal-rights activists who allegedly threatened researchers at UC Berkeley and UC Santa Cruz, saying prosecutors filed a vague indictment that failed to specify any illegal acts.

Horse deaths have many questioning Stampede Chuckwagon races
A chuckwagon driver fears the demise of his sport in the face of mounting pressure from animal rights groups and urbanites shocked at the deaths of horses at the Calgary Stampede.  Six horses died in the first nine days of the 10-day Stampede and four of them were chuckwagon horses. There were no reports of more deaths at the conclusion of the chuckwagon finals Sunday night.

Animal-rights advocate could resolve contempt case.
An animal-rights activist charged with contempt of court for allegedly refusing to testify about mink releases at Utah farms could be pleading guilty in the case.  The U.S. District Court docket shows a change-of-plea hearing scheduled on July 27 for Jordan Halliday, founder of the Animal Defense League of Salt Lake City. Those hearings generally are set after a defendant has struck a plea bargain with prosecutors.  A government brief alleges that Halliday refused to take an oath at an initial appearance on Feb. 18, 2009, and responded with “no comment” to almost every question

Hauled to court, forced to pay £1,500 and branded a criminal…for drowning a grey squirrel
When a bird lover managed to trap one of the grey squirrels raiding his nut feeders, he decided that drowning would be the most humane way to dispose of it.  However a vet said the process would have taken three minutes, so Mr Elliott was taken to court accused of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.  The landmark case sets an important precedent for killing grey squirrels, which are classified as a non-native invasive species, and could pave the way for hundreds of other prosecutions across the country.

Scathing report on hunting industry
A damning report by Animal Rights Africa (ARA) criticising hunting in South Africa has labelled the industry “a bloody mess”.  ARA said the report, which was released earlier this month, gave an in-depth look at hunting activities in the country and included a call for an urgent and comprehensive public investigation into the industry.  But the hunting lobby has hit back, saying the report was inaccurate and badly researched.

“Old Spice Man” Goes Vegan
Perhaps impressed by the likes of manly men Mac Danzig, Jake Shields, and Rich Roll, Old Spice Man (aka former Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Isaiah Mustafa) has embarked on a vegan cleanse. It’s a dangerous voyage, fraught with all the perils that come along with really great food that contains no hormones, antibiotics, cholesterol, or arsenic, but we are confident that OSM is not one to back down from a challenge that is, well, not really all that challenging.

Action Alerts

i Jul 6th No Comments by

Push Attorneys General to Charge BP With Criminal Cruelty to Animals
Ask the Attorney Generals in Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and Mississippi to charge BP with cruelty to animals. Tens of thousands of animals are suffering and dying painful and lingering deaths—and there is no end in sight.

CONTACT:
James D. “Buddy” Caldwell
Attorney General, Louisiana
P.O. Box 4934
Baton Rouge LA 70821
(866) 753-5025
email:  info@buddycaldwell.com

Troy King
Attorney General, Alabama
Post Office Box 310,
Montgomery AL 36101
phone (334) 239-7413
email

Bill McCollum
Attorney General, Florida
The Capitol, PL-01
Tallahassee FL 32399
phone (850) 414-3990

Jim Hood
Attorney General, Mississippi
P.O. Box 220
Jackson, MS 39205
phone (601) 359-3680
email
Urge Congress to Support Animal Protection in the Safe Chemicals Act
In a move to better protect human health and the environment from toxic substances, Congress is currently considering legislation that would tighten regulations on chemicals used in industrial and consumer goods, and ultimately reduce and replace animal testing.
The Safe Chemicals Act of 2010 (S. 3209) is a small step in the right direction to end animal testing, but it stops short of actually requiring the use of available alternatives, the sharing of existing test data among companies in place of new testing, or sufficiently prioritizing the further development of advanced “21st century” testing approaches that could replace conventional animal tests.
Take Action:
Contact your two U.S. Senators to urge them to strengthen measures to reduce and replace animal testing in S. 3209, the Safe Chemicals Act.
Click here to find your U.S. Senators

Ask Congress To Force BLM To Allow Public Observation Of Wild Horse Program
Tell your representatives in Congress to force the BLM to allow the public to see and document how the agency is spending your tax dollars to round up and hold WILD horses and burros. After you submit the form, please call your senators and representatives to follow up and ask them what action they have taken on this issue.
Contact:
Your U.S. Representative
Your U.S. Senators

Let TNT Know What You Think of Its Ringling Bros. Reality Show
Recently, cable station Turner Network Television (TNT) announced plans to air a reality show featuring Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The show will send TNT’s cameras inside the Ringling train as it travels from city to city, in what will likely amount to nothing more than a lengthy Ringling commercial.
The reality is that Ringling Bros. circus animals may spend up to 11 months of the year traveling, caged or chained for upwards of 26 hours at a time, enduring extreme conditions, and forced to perform unnatural tricks which they may also find painful.
This will likely not be the reality portrayed in the TNT show. Unfortunately, this show will become another marketing vehicle for Ringling. Bros. as it reaches into the homes of millions of viewers across the country — many of whom may be unaware of the sad reality of the living and training conditions experienced by the animal performers.
Take Action:
Contact the executives at TNT who are responsible for producing and airing a “reality” show on Ringling Bros. and urge them to abandon their plans to air this show.
For more information, and to sign a petition, check here