News of Note

i Aug 22nd by

Meat Inspectors Get Clout to Stop Inhumane Slaughter
Meat inspectors at federally regulated plants that slaughter animals got new instructions for humane treatment of animals.  Announced Monday by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), the instructions come in the form of a new 40-page directive. The rules go into effect on Sept. 15.

Snapperfest – turtle torture festival continues despite protests
Aurora, Indiana –  “it’s just a little fun the guys have – of who can grab it the fastest and get it our the quickest,” is Greg Park’s explanation of Snapperfest 2011 where wild snapping turtles are overtly tortured by  flabby”macho men” in shirtless overalls. Unfortunately onlookers and filming crews who might look suspiciously like members of the press or other assorted media sources may have been barred from filming the “entertainment.”

Want to go vegan like Bill Clinton?
Once famed for his love of hamburgers and doughnuts, Clinton, who had quadruple bypass surgery in 2004, dropped 24 pounds and has lowered his cholesterol levels dramatically since adopting a near vegan lifestyle last year. So, is veganism a good idea?  “Veganism is one of the healthiest dietary lifestyles…if done properly,” reports LiveScience.

Search ends in Gwinnett for missing research monkey
Emory University’s Yerkes National Primate Research Center announced it has ended efforts to locate the animal. Known only as “EP13,” the 2-year-old rhesus macaque was discovered missing on June 15.  “Despite extensive efforts by Yerkes staff, we have not been able to locate this research animal,” Dr. Stuart Zola, director of Yerkes, said in a prepared statement issued last week.

Think You’re Smarter Than Animals? Maybe Not
A few recent research papers describe animal competence at social and cognitive tasks that humans often struggle with — mastering conversational etiquette, understanding botanical classification, competing on game shows and figuring out how to get a drink when you’re thirsty and the only glass of water is glued to the table and your hands are tied behind your back.

German Cow Runs For Her Life
A runaway cow has captivated the attention of the media, police authorities, hunters, animal rights activists and even the Hindu community.  Yvonne has been on the run since May, and though several attempts have been made to capture her none have been successful. All eyes are on Yvonne, the six-year-old fugitive cow.  The mayhem began in May when Yvonne escaped from a farm in Muehldorf, Germany, where she was being prepared for slaughter, reports Der Spiegel.

Amphibian species clings to life
The federally endangered frogs, which recently metamorphosed from the tadpole stage, died in captive breeding tanks over the last several weeks at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo.

Expert: BP spill likely cause of sick Gulf fish
More than a year after the largest oil spill in U.S. history, researchers studying the Gulf of Mexico are finding that more fish are sick, and they’re trying to figure out exactly why.  Jim Cowan, professor of oceanography at Louisiana State University, has analyzed many of these diseased fish.  “When one of these things comes on deck, it’s sort of horrifying,” Cowan said. “I mean, there these large dark lesions and eroded fins and areas on the body where scales have been removed. I’dimagine I’ve seen 30 or 40,000 red snapper in my career, and I’ve never seen anything like this. At all. Ever.”

State Supreme Court to hear Morris Plains case and decide if owner of killed dog can claim emotional distress
Acting on the case of a woman whose maltipoo was shaken to death in Morris Plains by a larger dog, the state Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether dog owners who witness the killing of their pets by another dog can sue for emotional distress.

Nebraska jail uses cats to bring out warm and fuzzy side of inmates
For the past week, inmates at Nebraska’s Lincoln County Jail have been volunteering their time at the animal shelter, but little did they know on Tuesday they would be walking out with something else.  The jail has adopted two cats that will live with inmates.

Coyotes in city to stay, so protect pets and food
Now the message is tamer. At a neighborhood meeting organized by Assemblywoman Fiona Ma in the Richmond District on Friday, animal experts kept it simple: They’re here. There are more of them than ever. Get used to it.