Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Water Buffalo Vs. Lions Vs. Crocodile

This video is kind of long (over 8 minutes), but is very cool.

The ending is worth the wait.

Bears and Urban Growth

Big bear happenings in the Seattle area. The first article talks about
the bear that was hit by a car on the freeway earlier in the week.
Front-page news in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. On a happier note,
another wandering bear
mentioned in the article appears to have been
captured by State wildlife folks and will be tagged and released back
into the wild.

Recently, a bear was shot and accidentally killed with a tranquilizer
in the University District of urban Seattle. Some people think that the
bears are becoming more dangerous to humans because they are moving into
human territory. No, it's the opposite. People are becoming more
dangerous to bears because WE are moving into bear territory. The
article mentions how prime bear habitat is being rapidly developed.
It's primarily for those home-buyers that can't afford to buy in the
high-priced Seattle area and want a "rural" lifestyle.

This is an example of how seemingly unrelated issues can actually be
connected. The tragedy of the bear-human conflict is a direct result of
the economic pressures that are throwing the Seattle housing market
out-of-whack. Again, human issues and animal issues do not exist in
vaccuums.

Freed Panda Dies in China

China has begun releasing pandas bred in captivity into the wild. Xiang Xiang was released in April of 2006 and seemed to be adjusting well, but it looks like he died in a fight with other pandas.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Dog Fighting and the NFL and NBA

Here is an excellent article in Sport Illustrated about Michael Vick and the dog fighting culture in the NFL and NBA. H/t to Itchmo for this one.

Breaking News, Animals Have Personalities

Well I knew that. We've had lots of hamsters, and they definately have different personalities. Even the little dwarf hammies can be very different in temperment, likes and dislikes etc.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Cool Tiger Pics

I'd rather an animal like this be in the wild. But this is still a pretty cool set of pictures of a white tiger swimming under water.

Love that expression.

Dogs in Canada Shipped to Europe for Medical Experiments

Seems they ship them over by the pallet load.

Looks like Quebec is a mecca for animal experimentation.

Pensacola FL Plans on Killing Feral Cats

You would think in this day and age that communities would be a little more enlightened in their approach.

Trap Neuter Return (TNR) programs have been found to be cheaper and more effective than simple eradication. Here is a good summary of TNR.

Alley Cat Allies does great work in this regard. They have lots of educational materials on their website too.

India May Back China in Lifting Ban on Tiger Part Sales

India said it may back China's proposal to lift the ban on sales of tiger parts so long as it can be shown that it won't harm wild tiger populations.

Man to Eat Corgi to Protest Royals Treatment of Animals

Idiot.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Anti-Whaling Nations Oppose Japanese Coastal Whaling Proposal

The IWC met on Monday and are expected to reject a Japanese "compromise" in which it said it would give up hunting 50 humpback whales as part of it's bogus scientific program in exchange for allowing whaling by coastal communities.

Kashmir Bans Fur Trade

Good for them. India is one of those countries on the front lines in the illegal animal trade. They've got a lot of rare animals, plus crushing poverty in many areas. That makes for a tough fight.

Veterens Lobby for Memorial for Dogs That Served in War

The Vietnam Dog Handlers Association are lobbying Congress for a national war-dog memorial.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Critter of the Week - Jennie



Not being an animal hoarder, I'll probably run out of these soon.

Disaster Preparedness for Pets

Here is a link to the Dept. of Homeland Security's brochure for taking care of pets during a disaster. The link is on the right side.

Stupid Human Tricks

Lord, a pet spa? With heated towels? How dumb is that? If you want to pamper your pet, do it yourself. And donate the money you save to an animal shelter.

Animal Rights Article in Chicago Trib

Here is a long article in the Chicago Tribune Magazine about the animal rights movement (especially about PETA).

Saturday, May 26, 2007

5000 Animals Found on Abandoned Boat

That's right, 5000 animals found off of China's coast. Live animals, packed in crates. Really makes you think about just how large that type of business must be.

Friday, May 25, 2007

State of South Dakota vs US Fish and Wildlife

Seems S. Dakota will end any cooperation with USFWS because they won't fire an agent they want fired. What crap. I hope Congress takes this into account when they need any federal funding.

Animal Rights Extremism and Terrorism

This is a link to an Ars Technica article, which is about an article in Nature. How's that for levels of reference?

You can't read the Nature article unless you are a subscriber. I link to it becuase it''s about whether animal rights extremists should be considered terrorists. I don't agree with setting off bombs in labs or burning down buildings. But, is it terrorism?

In many cases, groups like ALF try to make sure that there are no people around when they do these things. Is it terrorism?

That raises some interesting issues. On the one hand, I can see governments using that as a bludgeon to go after groups involved in a midnight arson attack against a medical testing facility. On the other hand, they are using violence to achieve a particular goal, But, are they to be lumped together with Al Qaida?

Let's seperate the issue out from the tactics. If you were pro-choice, would you want someone who burned down an abortion clinic a terrorist?

The comments in the Ars Technica article are worth a read, just to get a feel for different opinions (albeit from the cheeto stained fingers of your average Ars Technica reader). And, yes, I eat cheetos from time to time and read Ars Technica once in a while.

Trading in Swan Meat Not a Good Idea in China

Some guy get's 13 years in China for trading in state protected swans (no word on whether he killed them him self).

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Last US State Outlaws Killing Horses for Meat

Illinois outlaws the slaughter of horses for meat. Looks like the ones eating it were in Europe or Japan though.

Not all Europeans approve of it though.

Shark and Chips?

Looks like the spiny dogfish is in trouble from over fishing. It's used in a lot of different countries (under a variety of euphamisms), including the "fish" in fish and chips. I always assumed it was cod or something.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dogs in Vick Case to be Euthanized

The dogs that happened to be the same breed that Michael Vick advertised for sale on his website, found in a house that he owned, and allegedly used in dog fighting for which he knew nothing about because, even though he bred those kind of dogs and owned the house where all this took place, he wasn't ever there. Well those dogs will be euthanized.

And, as if I needed another reason to hate the Washington Redskins, there are these two mouthbreathers defending him.

Great Ape Project

The Great Ape Project is an organization dedicated to extending protections like life, liberty and freedom from torture to non-human apes. You can read about it here.

OK, that's a fairly complicated and controversial issue. Here's their website. I'm not really sure how I feel about it. I can't argue with most of the principles. But then again, I'm not pro-torture, imprison or kill tigers, elephants, marmosets and a lot of other animals. Does extending a gorilla these rights because they are more like us diminish the rights of say, an aardvark? And, of course there are a host of hidden legal implications.

I found an article
from Laura Echevarria from LifeNews. Great. I thought it would be interesting to see the issue through the eyes of a member of an anti-abortion group. This is what got me reading about this in the first place. The author doesn't exactly wow me with her powers of persuasion (which consists of calling the whole notion "hogwash").

Animal Testing for Cosmetics Outlawed in Isreal

The Knesset just passed the new law.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Update on Poultry Abuse

Denny's has suspended doing business with the House of Raeford over the Turkey abuse video.

Poultry Abuse in North Carolina

Don't even click on this if you don't want to see some pretty nasty animal abuse. I don't usually post stuff like this, but sometimes people need to see it. Workers using live turkeys hanging by their feet as punching bags. It's pretty ugly.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

ASEAN Meets on Illegal Wildlife Trade

No suprise that Chinese Traditional Medicine is a big culprit in this.

Interview With The Head of Foundation for Biomedical Research

Here's a Wired interview with the head of Foundation for Biomedical Research where he talks about animal activists.

Kenyan Wildlife Policy

Here is a good (and long) look at proposed amendments to Kenya's Wildlife Act. The article is written by a Kenyan in the Sunday Times. It's nice to read about these issues from an African perspective.

It''s easy for westerners to spout off about how they need to protect our planet's treasures, but they are the ones stuck doing it (not to mention dying for the cause).

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Good News for Stray Dogs in Taipei

The president of Hon Hai Precision Industrial Co has stepped in to help stray dogs in Taipei.

Anti-Whaling Nations Secure Majority on IWC

It looks like efforts by Britain have paid off in turning back efforts on the International Whaling Commission to lift the ban.

But, some nations like Iceland, Norway and Japan do it through the bogus "scientific" loophole. Sea Shepherd is launching a campaign against Iceland.

Here is an article from Iceland Review about whaling as well.

Animal Radio

Here is a web site for Animal Radio. If you get Live365, they have a channel on there, but you can listen through their website as well. I'm listening to it right now through my Tivo.

Ferret Nation

Here is a blog about ferrets.

Guaranteed to be Giuliani Free.

Elephants Hear With Their Feet

This is interesting. A researcher found that when elephants listen to something close, they use their ear flaps like a parabolic antenna. But, when they try to listen to something far away, they don't move, and lean into their front feet.

Tom Lantos Get Involved in Michael Vick Case

Rep. Tom Lantos, a senior member of the Oversight and Govt. Reform Committee is asking the NFL to take action against Atlanta Falcon quarterback Michael Vick over the dog fighting allegations.

There are reports that he had been at the house despite his denials.

Here is an excellent editorial out of Atlanta that blasts him.

Gun Battle in Kenyan Park

3 rangers and 4 poachers were killed in a gun battle in a Kenyan Park.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Critter of the Week - Cleo the Cat

Helping Animals Vs People

Here is an interesting article in the Conservative Voice of all places about animals vs humans. The writer works for PETA, which makes the source all the more interesting.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

American Gerbil Society

I just found out about this group. If you're into gerbils, or you're a gerbil that's into humans, this is the place for you.

And for you Brits, I give you the Hamster Society.

Ebay and Ivory

Yet another article about ebay and the selling of ivory.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cat Dropping Coffee

That's right. It's made from coffee beans hand picked from civet cat turds in Indonesia. So next time you feel your job sucks, think of that bean picker...

Then go get another cup o' joe.

More Rat News

Chinese officials are blaming global warming on the increase in the rat population in western China (see my earlier post about their "trained" foxes).

Looks like this is happening in England too. They use dogs for hunting rats there.

Boston too.

25000 Chickens Die in Fire

Looks like arson is being investigated.

Humans vs Wildlife

Here is a laundry list of human vs animal conflicts via the Globa and Mail.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Wolf and Donkey Living Together

OK I saw this picture first on the BBC site, and here is a short blurb and picture on AFP. Apparantly some Albanians caught a wolf. Then, they decided, "Hey, let's give him a donkey to eat". That's right a donkey. The wolf hasn't killed the donkey yet (it's been 16 days). And they will live happily ever after together in some crappy little cage.

Charming.

Headline of the Day: Predators Mobilized to Keep Rats at Bay

Seems the Chinese have specially trained foxes to take them out.

This from the China Peoples Daily. Apparantly an overpopulation of rats threatens grasslands in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. So, they've set up special fox training camps. Eagles and wolves are also being used. No word on whether the eagles and wolves are getting some of that special training...

Elephant Retires From Zoo

Ruby the elephant, at 46 years old, has been sent from the LA zoo to the Performing Animal Welfare Society Sanctuary.

Bill to Limit Animals Sold to Research Labs

The Humane Society is pushing a bill that would limit the sale of animals to laboratories from "random" source dealers.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Authorities Euthanize Tiger for Acting Like Tiger

I'm not a big fan of private zoos. And I'm sorry this woman was killed.

But why do they have to kill the tiger?

Whether bred in captivity or not, tigers tend to kill things. That's what they do.

More on Ebay and the Ivory Trade

Here's another article about Ebay and the ivory trade.

Light posting today.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Alligator Snapping Turtles Reintroduced in Oklahoma

Kudus to US Fish and Wildlife for reintroducing alligator snapping turtles into Oklahoma.

Look at this.
That is one cool looking turtle.

Getting to Close to Wildlife

Here is an excellent article about how popular animal shows can set a bad example of how not to behave around wild animals.

I'm not a big fan of those that get in the face of wildlife for entertainment. And, in some particular cases (Irwin and Treadwell come to mind), I think putting themselves close to the animals has more to do with entertaining video rather than educating people about animals. I don''t say that because of the particular danger involved (although that is an issue). I say that because the focus tends to be on people rather than the animals.

But, neither Irwin, Corwin or Treadwell invented the genre. Remember Wild Kingdom?

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Animal Torture Bill in Utah

For some reason, they are having a tough time making it a felony to torture animals in Utah.

"The problem is this isn't about healthy animals. In the long run, it's about giving animals human-type rights," said Gibson, a Republican dairy farmer from Ogden.

Next thing you know, animals will be getting married.

More Michael Vick and Dog Fighting

Looks like it was "common knowledge" in the Atlanta Falcons that Vick was involved in dog fighting.

Uh oh.

More about it here.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Wildlife in War Zones

Here is an interesting article in an Australian magazine about the effect of war on wildlife. Strangely enough, it's a mixed bag. As we have seen in Africa with the bush meat trade, and with Agent Orange in Vietnam, war can be very harmful to wildlife.

But, in some instances, war can actually give animals breathing room because it keeps people from settling in certain areas.

Critter of the Week - Doris

Vick to Sell House Where Dog Fighting Took Place

It still stinks as far as I'm concerned...

Cat vs. Bear

Now this is one tough cat.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Tainted Pet Food Deaths

I can't think of anything interesting to write today. Here is Itchmo's article about how the monetary value given to pets will limit the amount of money that Menu Foods would be liable for.

Animalblawg has more on this as well.

Cat Poetry

Here is a scanned book of poetry about cats from 1892. Google Books has a lot of neat things.


Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Bears in India

OK, I had NO IDEA that there are bears in India. Here is a group that rescues them.

India really seems to come up a lot whether it be tigers, elephants or other endangered species. I guess that's not suprising.

Here is a news article about some wildlife traders caught with 2 sloth bears in India. Wildlife SOS of India (highlighted above) and One Voice of France were involved.

Dealing With What May Be An Orphaned Wild Animal

Read this. If you already know it, you can always use a refresher.

Puppy Scam From Africa

Looks like some scammers are posing as Peace Corp volunteers placing ads promising a free puppy for people that pay "shipping".

Here's another article about the same scam.

And watch out if they say the puppy is the brother in law to the former Oil Minister for Nigeria.

Giuliani and Ferrets

There's an audio tape making the rounds of a radio call in which then Mayor Giuliani goes ballistic over a caller who opposes the ban on ferrets in NY City. Oliver Willis has a clip of the audio tape of him berating the caller as a lunatic.

Here is a funny video made from that call.

Best Place to Pet a Cow

Yes, the Austrians are on the case, complete with heart monitors to see those bovine heart rates drop with the relaxation. They talk about other animals too.

They have come to the conclusion that animals like it when you pet the areas where they groom each other. Well, duh. I figured that out with my cats long ago...

New Law in Connecticut for Disaster Planning

Pets must now be included in any disaster planning according to a new law signed by Connecticut Governor Rell. Good for them. I can't even imagine how awful it would be to leave a cat or dog behind in a disaster.

The Internet and Ivory Sales

Here is an article about how the internet is being used to sell banned items such as Ivory.

If you look for the word tusk on ebay you come up with quite a few hits.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

More Possible Pet Recall

Itchmo has a post up about another possible pet food recall. They have lots of info on the subject.

Encyclopedia of Life

This might be kind of cool. There is a 10 year project to create an encyclopedia with every living species (plant and animal).

Monday, May 7, 2007

Flying with Pets

Here is a good article in the Christian Science Monitor about flying with pets. My window overlooks American Airlines Cargo, so I see the happy animals let out of their carriers.

Relocation Attempt for Tigers in India

Tigers use to be a mainstay of the Sariska Tiger Reserve. Two years ago, poachers wiped them out. Now they are trying to re-introduce them into the Reserve. I hope it works, but frankly I'm a little skeptical.

Animal Tornado Victims

Just as with Katrina, animals ended up being victims in the Tornado in Greensburg KS as well.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

International Aid for Korean Animals

This is a good web site about a group started in 1997 by Kyenan Kum. Much of what they do has to do with the eating of dog meat. There are good articles from a Korean perspective which dispute that this practice is an integral part of Korean culture.

They also have pictures of dogs (dead and alive) that are used for human consumption. But, they do give warning so you can avoid them if you like.

You can donate online.

Mad Cow Disease in Surrey BC

A 66 month old dairy cow tested positive for BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephelopathy) or mad cow disease. Apparantly this isn't really news any more. Or at least not enough to be reported by any mainstream outlets. I'm not too sure why that is.

Here is a decent article on how it works.

Chinese Make Arrest in Tainted Animal Feed

Kudos for cracking that case boys. Then again, I've heard melamine get's sold to pet food manufacturers all the time. I'm sure this guy will make a great sacrifice though...

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Hong Kong Cat Salvation Army

Here's the site for the Hong Kong Cat Salvation Army. Most of it is in Chinese, and I'm sure they do good work...

http://www.hkcsa.org.hk/

Update

OK they do actually have a very nice site. The link above with the spinning graphic and the flashing text just looked so 1995. The site below has a virtual tour where you can pan around the cat shelter they operate. Very cool. I like highlighting groups from Asia because we hear so little about them.

http://www.hkcsa.org.hk/Englishsite/index1.htm

Cute Overload Blog

For when you get tired of reading about dead rhinos and other assorted bad things...

http://www.cuteoverload.com/

40 Black Rhinos Poached in Zimbabwe in the Last 3 Years

I try not to make this blog a litany of depressing news, but I think this is important to know about.

http://www.smh.com.au

Michael Vick's Website

Here is Michael Vick's website. It seemed to be down on Friday but is now up.

http://www.vicksk9kennels.com/

Friday, May 4, 2007

US Govt Continues Support for Ban on Tiger Products

China has come out in favor of lifting the ban on the use of tiger products. The US favors keeping the ban in place. Hopefully this will be enough to keep the ban in place.

http://www.voanews.com/english/2007-05-03-voa75.cfm

Friday Night Critter of the Week - Charlotte

Animal Fighting Now a Federal Felony

This may be the only time I say this but bravo to President Bush for not caving into the Animal Fighting Industry by signing a bill making it a federal felony to promote or encourage animal fighting.

http://www.sfgate.com

Five Elephants Killed by Lightning

Wow. I thought this was just strange. One, I can maybe see, but five?

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/world/4777113.html

More on Michael Vick and Dog Fighting on His Property

He has a web site about raising dogs commonly used in dog fighting. A kennel listed on the site was on the same street where a raid took place for alleged illegal dog fighting.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/technology/

The site, is now down. Here is the domain info (not very helpful...)
 Domain Name: VICKSK9KENNELS.COM
Registrar: GO DADDY SOFTWARE, INC.
Whois Server: whois.godaddy.com
Referral URL: http://registrar.godaddy.com
Name Server: PARK19.SECURESERVER.NET
Name Server: PARK20.SECURESERVER.NET
Status: clientRenewProhibited
Status: clientTransferProhibited
Status: clientUpdateProhibited
Status: clientDeleteProhibited
Updated Date: 26-aug-2006
Creation Date: 26-aug-2006
Expiration Date: 26-aug-2007

Here is the info from godaddy.com.

Registrant:
2000 Solutions

P.O. Box 5572
Newport News, Virginia 23605
United States

Registered through: GoDaddy.com, Inc. (http://www.godaddy.com)
Domain Name: VICKSK9KENNELS.COM
Created on: 26-Aug-06
Expires on: 26-Aug-07
Last Updated on: 26-Aug-06

Administrative Contact:
Alston, Brian 2000solutions@gmail.com
2000 Solutions
P.O. Box 5572
Newport News, Virginia 23605
United States
(757) 329-7242

Technical Contact:
Alston, Brian 2000solutions@gmail.com
2000 Solutions
P.O. Box 5572
Newport News, Virginia 23605
United States
(757) 329-7242

Domain servers in listed order:
PARK19.SECURESERVER.NET
PARK20.SECURESERVER.NET



Article on Tainted Gluten Exporter

Here is an article about the Chinese company responsible for exporting the melamine tainted wheat gluten.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/04/AR2007050400441.html

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Picking Small Animals as Pets

Here is a good article about finding the right small animal for a pet.

http://www.nwherald.com/articles

More Food Added to Pet Food Recall

Menu Foods has added more cat and dog food to the recall. Here is a list. It's a Canadian Press release, but it has US products too. And if you think it's just the "fancy" stuff. Think again. They have Western Family on the list too.

http://www.menufoods.com/recall/PressReleaseCanada05022007.htm

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Breaking News: Conservatives Don't Like Beating Puppies

Here's an interesting article about conservatives getting involved in animal cruelty issues.

http://www.theconservativevoice.com/article/24790.html

I agree with the author that liberals shouldn't have a corner on the compassion issue. I think it's great, that people like Pat Buchanan and G. Gordon Liddy acknowledge these issues. But what are their answers? Tax breaks for treating animals humanely?

Here's Pat's Presidential platform back in 2000:

"We are an overregulated, overtaxed, and overgoverned society. As President, I will begin to roll back this regulation juggernaut by dismantling the Dept. of Education, Dept. of Energy, Dept. of Housing & Urban Development, & the Dept. of Commerce. I will I will also defund the National Endowment of the Arts, National Endowment of the Humanities & Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The Bureau of Land Management will be eliminated, & I will dissolve the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms into the FBI."

I don't think conservatives are necessarily unfeeling and want animals to suffer. I don't think they want to breathe polluted air either. Who does? The question is, what do they have to offer? They spend their time beating the drum to get the Gummint out of everything, but oh yeah, isn't it tragic that animals are being treated inhumanely in labs or slaughterhouses.

The Dog Interview and Renting Apartments in NY

Ah, now apartment boards in NY City may not just interview you, they may want to interview your dog. Here's hoping he doesn't drool on the carpet...

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/05/03/wpets03.xml

More Melamine

Melamine in Chicken Feed.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070502072434.htm

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Melamine Update

Here is a post on Animalblawg about the new FDA import alert on vegetable protein imports from China.

http://www.animalblawg.com/wordpress/?p=44

Below is a copy of the actual import alert. Any vegetable protein products from China will be automatically detained. What that means is the importer has to keep the product intact in a warehouse and have it tested at a private lab. FDA won't release it until they submit clean results for the shipment. After the 5th shipment passes the lab test, they can ask that a particular shipper be removed from the detention order.

http://www.fda.gov/ora/fiars/ora_import_ia9929.html

Eradicating Goats in the Galapagos

Here is a good article about efforts to eradicate goats in the Galapagos islands, which pose a threat to native species there.

http://www.nytimes.com

China Supports Sale of Tiger Meat

Seems the Chinese Govt. now supports the sale of Tiger meat and other parts. That's just the flat out dumbest thing I've ever heard. It's bad enough with poachers without having a state officials coming out in favor of this kind of thing.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Sanke Brandishing Woman Gets House Arrest

This is one way to keep people from grabbing you....

http://www.cnn.com/2007/LAW/05/01/snake.brandishing.ap/index.html

Basking Sharks Disappearing off Canada

Looks like the population is down by 90% (although they don't say from when this was measured). Up until 1970, the Canadian Govt. had a program to eradicate them, as they frequently got caught in fishing nets.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070501.wxendangered01/BNStory/Science/home

Zoo Closes in Cambodia

A zoo close in Cambodia after rare animals die or end up missing.

http://www.sundaytimes.co.za/News/Article.aspx?id=450171

Abandoned Pets in Korea

Here is an interesting article about a Canadian ex-pat in Korea who works with abandoned animals there. It also talks a little about the dog meat trade there.

http://theseoultimes.com/ST/?url=/ST/db/read.php?idx=5226