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Author Topic: For All Daemon Souls and Dog Lovers  (Read 16131 times)
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« Reply #405 on: Aug 26, 2014, 08:12 AM »


It's World Dog Day, let's think about the whole dog

Veterinarian, DVM, PhD
By: Kati Loeffler
IFAW
Posted: Tue, 08/26/2014

Dogs need freedom to keep body and soul together: the freedom to move, to meet friends, to avoid non-friends, to choose where to rest, to greet loved ones, to go to the toilet away from where one eats and sleeps. On a hot, dusty afternoon in South Africa last spring, a man approached our mobile veterinary clinic with five dogs radiating on bits of rope and chain from his hand like so many spokes on a wheel.

The man settled in the shade of a little tree and patiently waited his turn. Four of the dogs settled down with him. They were plump and shiny and panted gently as they watched the chaotic queue of people and dogs and cats and puppies and children bouncing everywhere.

The fifth dog couldn’t settle.

He strained at his chain, lunged and twisted and barked at everyone and everything. He was a tall, athletic dog, but very thin and mangy and his fur dry and patchy.

He was clearly stressed out of his mind.

When the man’s turn came, he explained that he had recently acquired this frenetic dog from someone who wanted to abandon him. He was worried that the dog was not eating well and had bitten people and other dogs.

The other four dogs had come along just to keep the family whole on this excursion, and for us to see how well they looked: the man was proud of how well he took care of his dogs.

He worked as a night security guard at a school, and his dogs went with him to his job. While he spoke, he stroked them in turn, and they blinked and panted and returned his affection with their soft, brown gaze. But the new dog whom he had saved from abandonment couldn’t be stroked: he was too restless and jumpy.

The man explained that the dog had been chained at his previous home, and he kept him chained now because he was so “crazy”.

He was only a young dog, just a year or two.

The man asked if  he was possessed?

Perhaps an angry neighbor had put a curse on the dog for barking too much?

We frequently need to dispel superstitions about animals in our work around the world, but in a way, yes, it was a curse.

It was the curse of perpetual chaining.

This young, gorgeous animal was being driven out of body and mind by restriction of one of the most fundamental things that any creature - dog, human, hedgehog, parakeet, wombat, kudu, whale, butterfly and everything in between needs to keep body and soul together: the freedom to move, to meet friends, to avoid non-friends, to choose where to rest, to greet loved ones, to go to the toilet away from where one eats and sleeps.

Living permanently on the end of a chain or in a cage takes away all of an animal’s choices for the most basic decisions, natural behaviors and social needs that we take for granted.

Boredom, isolation, lack of exercise, the elimination of all choices, restriction from the opportunity to interact with the world.

This is what we do to dogs when we chain or cage them.

Taking the dog for exercise and play is as important as feeding her. Moreover, a dog is built to move – particularly a young dog, and one built like our thin, frantic friend.

They must run and play and work their muscles hard.

If they can’t, their minds can’t work properly, just like a child who doesn’t get enough exercise can’t concentrate in school. Add to this the incessant frustration of not being able to do any of the other things that a dog needs to do, and we end up with a mad dog who can express his frustration only by biting and barking and straining at the tether.

He isn’t a “bad” dog.

He isn’t inherently crazy.

He isn’t cursed.

He’s chained.

This problem isn’t restricted to dogs who are chained in a dusty shanty town in Africa.

I see it all over the world – from American suburbia to urban China – where dogs are confined to long, lonely, boring days in the house or chained to a stake in the yard while the owners are away at work.

They wait all day for the moment that we return home and take them to the park to run and run and run and play, and to do that with us.

We are their Person, their Pet Human, the Most Important Thing in their World.

We owe them this daily time for exercise and play for what they bring to our own lives, and as responsible and humane guardians of animals.

Taking the dog for exercise and play is as important as feeding her.

Every day.

So, we did what we do – we looked beyond the immediate problems of bad skin and poor appetite, and looked at the whole dog.

We helped the lovely man with his five dogs fix the fence around his house, and then he removed the thin dog’s chain. We dewormed and vaccinated the dog as standard measures of preventive health care, but he didn’t need any drugs for his skin. His skin would heal as his mind healed.

We also neutered him, which of course is essential for the dog to want to stay home rather than to go out chasing estrous-fragrant lady-dogs all over the county and getting hit by cars and fighting with other boy dogs over said fragrant lady-dogs. In many areas of the world, a dog’s main job is to guard the home.

A neutered dog who is properly exercised and who is made to feel part of the family will stay home and look after that family with a loyalty and commitment that no high-tech alarm system can duplicate.

He or she can’t do that if s/he is chained and isolated and frustrated.

Every day, the man took his dogs into an empty lot in the township where they could run and play until they sank into happy exhaustion.

At home, the dog now mixed with the other four and soon behaved as part of the family. A month later, when I saw him for his booster vaccinations, the dog was filling out and his fur growing in thick and shiny.

His tongue lolled in a happy grin.

He was still very energetic, but this time when he lunged, it was to plant a big slurp on my face.

His Person stroked him and smiled.

--KL

Learn more about IFAW efforts for cats & dogs on our campaign page: http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/our-work/cats-and-dogs


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« Reply #406 on: Aug 26, 2014, 08:20 AM »


Chartered flight brings rescued baby elephant “Ntubya” to Zambia orphanage

IFAW
Sarah Davies, Public Relations Manager, Game Rangers International
By: Sarah Davies
Posted: Mon, 08/18/2014

"Ntubya" being fed in her travel crate as she arrives at Lilayi Elephant Nursery.Last Wednesday, an 18-month-old elephant calf, named “Ntubya” after the village in which she was rescued, safely arrived safely at the Lilayi Elephant Nursery.

People living in the remote village of Ntubya in Musungwa Chiefdom, bordering Kafue National Park, found her scared and alone after she had been sighted without her herd several times over the last three weeks.

They knew that she needed help and called the Zambia Wildlife Authority who asked the Elephant Orphanage Project to respond.

In this isolated area of Zambia, local residents have limited access to electricity or phone signal but they still managed to get a message out to help this little elephant. The team at the Kafue Release Facility travelled straight to Ntubya and found the calf severely emaciated and dehydrated. It is thought that she has been away from her mother for at least 2-3 weeks.

She is very weak and all our efforts are being concentrated on stabilising her condition.

Also on IFAW.org:  On World Elephant Day in India, a “thumbs-up” for the elephants

A rescue mission like Ntubya’s could not have been possible without chartering a plane for which we have to thank Royal Air Charters.

We would also like to thank our partners the Zambia Wildlife Authority for veterinary support, the Millers of Lilayi Farm for logistical support and the communities of Ntubya in Musungwa Chiefdom.

Ntubya has a tough few weeks ahead of her...your support is key to upping her chances.

The Elephant Orphanage Project and Ntubya herself have a tough few weeks ahead of us.

She will be given 24-hour care and all of her medical and emotional needs attended to.

--SD

Your support is one of the keys to increasing Ntubya's chances. Donate now: https://www.ifaw.org/united-states/secure/donate/help-save-starving-orphan-elephant?ms=UONDF140820060&cid=701F0000000Razg

The Elephant Orphanage Project (EOP) is a project of Game Rangers International, which works in close collaboration with the Zambia Wildlife Authority and is supported by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation


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« Reply #407 on: Aug 27, 2014, 06:40 AM »


Illegal wildlife trade along the Burma-China border - in pictures

The Guardian
08/27/2014

The town of Mong-La in Burma's Shan state, close to the border with China, is at the crossroads of illegal wildlife trade routes that are sucking the forests, jungles and plains of India, Burma, Laos and Thailand dry of their native animals and plants – many of them endangered

Click to view: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jul/21/-sp-endangered-species-on-sale-along-burmachina-border


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« Reply #408 on: Aug 27, 2014, 07:50 AM »


VIDEO: Unheard stories of the unsung heroes working to save India's tigers

By: Sheren Shrestha
IFAW
Posted: Wed, 07/23/2014

A tiger in the Kanha Tiger Reserve, one of the animals that Ram Singh Dhubre died protecting.

Every year a number of frontline staff lose their lives while protecting India’s natural heritage.

They often face better-armed poachers, and other threats including wild animals themselves.

To ensure the welfare of the guardians of the wild, IFAW-WTI runs a unique accident insurance plan for the frontline staff, providing them and/or their families quick relief in case of injuries or death on duty.

Also on IFAW.org: Death of elephant tusker Satao in Tsavo must not have been in vain

Around 20,000 frontline staff from over 23 Indian states are registered under this insurance plan, and since its launch in 2001, more than 110 families have gratefully received its benefits.

The video below tells the story of a family of one frontline staff member, Ram Singh Dhubre, who worked as a daily wage labourer with the Kanha Tiger Reserve Forest Department.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiW7ndkQH4c

Dhubre was killed in an accident on duty in December 2012 and his family was provided with relief from the insurance plan.

--SS

Your support helps keep this insurance program running, consider a donation to IFAW today.

https://www.ifaw.org/united-states/secure/donate/support-ifaws-work?ms=UONDR140001013&cid=701F0000000RB6Z


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« Reply #409 on: Aug 28, 2014, 07:10 AM »


A life of freedom for our six Russian tigers

IFAW
Anna Fillipova, Campaigner, Russia
By: Anna Fillipova
Posted: Wed, 08/27/2014

When my work day starts, the first thing that I do is check where our released tiger cubs are. They are of course not tiger cubs any more, but independent adult tigers, however, I continue to think of them as babies, as a mother who thinks that her child is always a child.

Recently we received new information about Sparta: she is healthy and again gave birth to a litter cubs. She lives in a Swedish zoo called Norden Ark.As long as there are many tigers whom we helped to survive, let's talk about them one by one.

I will start with Sparta, it is a female tiger, who was rescued by IFAW in 2007. Altogether there were four tiger cubs. We did not have the large rehabilitation center available then, therefore it was not possible to reintroduce those tigers into the wild and they all had to go to different zoos.

Recently we received new information about Sparta: she is healthy and again gave birth to a litter cubs. She lives in a Swedish zoo called Norden Ark.

Let's now go back to our tigers who were a bit luckier and were able to go back into the wild.

The first of these tigers is Zolushka, who is now independently roaming the taiga for over a year.

At the beginning we were also tracking her movement with satellite collar. But one day it stopped transmitting the signal, which really concerned everyone who was involved in Zolushka's rescue. But in projects like this one, there are also backup elements.

By the time the collar stopped transmitting signal, Zolushka already established her territory, and it was highly likely she was not far from that area. Therefore with IFAW support, experts of Ecology and Evolution Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Special Inspectorate “Tiger” and Wildlife Conservation Society went to look for her tracks, and also continued trying to determine her location through the collar satellite tag.

It is important to note, that such a tracking requires high professionalism, good physical and field training.

Other widely used modern ways to study animals are trail cameras. These are cameras which are placed in locations where animals could pass. The camera is triggered by movement and takes pictures of everything within its range.

Such trail cameras with IFAW support were placed within the territory of Bastak Nature Reserve, where Zolushka was released.

Zolushka is hunting successfully: in the first days after her release she was hunting badgers, then she started to hunt larger animals – boars and deer. Experts found many of Zolushka's hunting and resting locations.

These two methods, tracking and trail cameras, provided us with large amount of data confirming that Zolushka successfully found a niche in her “new home”.

She learned to interact with other animals – bears, deer, wolves and lynxes. It is considered that wolves do not inhabit places where tigers live. But there already were wolves in the Bastak Reserve. It is interesting to see how the situation changes: if the wolves remain there, if they leave the area or their population will decrease considerably.

Zolushka is hunting successfully: in the first days after her release she was hunting badgers, then she started to hunt larger animals – boars and deer. Experts found many of Zolushka's hunting and resting locations.

Every Zolushka (Russian for Cinderella) must have a prince: our prince is called Zavetny. It is a strong adult male, who is very interested in Zolushka. Winter tracking showed, that Zavetny followed Zolushka's tracks more than once, and trail cameras placed him in locations which Zolushka visited before.

Earlier the male tiger only stopped by the Bastak territory, now he spends more time there. During the summer Zolushka must get stronger and we are hoping, that the second winter will be as successful for her as the first one. Everyone is waiting for even happier news with bated breath: what if after meeting the male tiger...?

But let us not rush things: Zolushka is quite young, let us wait...

When Zolushka was leaving the rehabilitation center, several other tiger cubs have already been there for several months: Ilona, Svetlaya, Ustin, Borya and Kuzya.

Zolushka.

As well as for Zolushka, release of these tiger cubs is just the beginning.

Now we have to make sure that they are able to provide food for themselves and also avoid humans. All tigers were tagged with satellite collars and we are receiving data about their movement. As soon as the tigers moved away enough for the experts to follow their tracks without troubling the tigers, they started tracking. As satellite data allows only for guesses about successful hunts of our tigers, it has to be checked.

A team of staff members of Special Inspectorate “Tiger”, Russian Academy of Sciences and Wildlife Conservation Society implement post-monitoring of the five tigers.

Ilona was the most successful tiger in the first days of her new life. Remains of her meals of wild boar piglets and even an adult roe were found on her path.

No one could think that would happen, as Ilona was the tiger who did not want to leave the transportation cage!

Ilona and Borya remain not far from each other, they are systematically getting familiar with a territory of 40 by 40 km.

We were not able to find remains of Borya's prey, but his feces contained fur and bones of a boar.

Kuzya, while at the rehabilitation center, behaved as a more cautious tiger, but after the release he moved alone to explore further territories and within the first two months he moved over 200 km. At the beginning Kuzya made us all worried, as his movement could not signify successful hunts. But then remains of a very large boar were found.

This was the first large prey of Kuzya!

Ustin and Svetlaya, who were released within the territory of the Jewish Autonomous Region, at the beginning moved alongside, but then they moved somewhat away from each other. Ustin started to move far from the release location, while Svetlaya was gradually enlarging her territory, making larger and larger rounds.

None of these five tigers so far have come out to humans.

All project participants really hope, that these five tigers will have the same experience as Zolushka: successfully spending the winter and making their home in the taiga.

--AF

For more information about IFAW efforts to help save the last of the world's tigers, visit our campaign page.

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/our-work/saving-the-last-tigers


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« Reply #410 on: Aug 29, 2014, 07:16 AM »


Experts dispute claim that panda faked pregnancy to get more bamboo

By Jonathan Kaiman, The Guardian
Thursday, August 28, 2014 12:01 EDT

Claims that a six-year-old panda faked signs of pregnancy in order to receive better treatment from her conservation centre carers have been debunked by one of China’s leading panda experts.

China’s state newswire Xinhua reported on Tuesday that Ai Hin may have deliberately demonstrated tell-tale signs of panda pregnancy, including “reduced appetite, less mobility and a surge in progestational hormone”.

Pandas that staff believe to be expecting are given a single, air-conditioned room, as well as more buns, fruit and bamboo than non-pregnant pandas. “So some clever pandas have used this to their advantage to improve their quality of life,” Wu Kongju, an expert at the Chengdu research base of giant panda breeding, told Xinhua.

Yet Zhang Heming, director of the China research and conservation centre for the giant panda told the Guardian that Ai Hin’s behaviour was probably more of a hormonal issue than a deliberate ruse. “This phenomenon occurs in 10 to 20% of pandas,” he said. “After the mother panda is inseminated, if her health isn’t so good, the pregnancy will terminate, but she’ll still behave as if she’s pregnant.”

He continued: “This phenomenon also happens to wild pandas, if they don’t have enough bamboo to eat.”

The giant panda is one of the most endangered species on earth – about 1,600 live in the wild, mostly in the mountains of southwest China, according to Xinhua. About 300 live in captivity, and they’re notoriously bad at breeding – only about 24% of captive females give birth.

Pandas ovulate only once a year, and remain fertile for at most 36 hours. Determining pregnancy is complicated because of the size of the foetus – a typical newborn panda is only 1/900th the size of its mother.

***********

Star panda off live broadcast after phantom pregnancy

English.news.cn   2014-08-26 01:59:55    

CHENGDU, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) -- A celebrated giant panda was removed from a widely-anticipated live birth after it was discovered she was not actually pregnant.

The panda Ai Hin, 6, was scheduled to star in the world's first live broadcast of the birth of panda cubs, but the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Center told Xinhua Monday that the panda had a "phantom pregnancy."

Phantom pregnancy is common among the endangered bears. Non-pregnant pandas can exhibit prenatal behaviors as a result of progestational hormone changes. But experts said sometimes the pandas, noticing the difference in treatment after exhibiting initial signs of pregnancy, may carry on with the pregnant behavior.

"After showing prenatal signs, the 'mothers-to-be' are moved into single rooms with air conditioning and around-the-clock care. They also receive more buns, fruits and bamboo, so some clever pandas have used this to their advantage to improve their quality of life," said Wu Kongju, an expert at the Chengdu Base.

Ai Hin showed signs of pregnancy, including reduced appetite, less mobility and a surge in progestational hormone in July, but her behaviors and physiological indexes returned to normal after a two-month observation.

Ai Hin was born to panda Mei Mei in December, 2006 in Japan along with her twin brother. The twins quickly became star attractions and were returned to China in 2012.

There are only about 1,600 pandas living in the wild, mostly in the mountains of Sichuan, while about 300 are held in captivity in zoos worldwide. Most pandas in captivity are not good breeders. Only 24 percent of females in captivity give birth, posing a serious threat to the survival of the species.

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« Reply #411 on: Aug 31, 2014, 05:57 AM »

Don’t bring exotic rainforest animals home, expert warns

By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, August 30, 2014 9:48 EDT

Thousands of parrots, monkeys, iguanas, toucans, turtles and other rainforest animals are kept as exotic pets in Costa Rica, a practice putting some species at risk, according to experts.

The Central American country, famous for its rich biodiversity, won plaudits from conservationists two years ago for banning sport hunting in a pioneering move to protect wild animals.

But scientists and activists — gathered this week for the country’s first-ever conference on the issue of captive wildlife — say tropical animals face another major threat in Costa Ricans’ long-time love of exotic pets.

“There are no precise figures, but we know it’s a problem of great magnitude, because a study by the environment ministry found that 25 percent of households have a parrot or a parakeet as a pet,” said Andrea Aguilar of the Instituto Asis, a key figure behind the conference.

That would add up to nearly 400,000 exotic birds in cages, she said.

Aguilar’s institute runs a shelter for wild animals in La Fortuna de San Carlos, a lush region in northern Costa Rica that draws large numbers of foreign tourists with its famous wildlife and tropical vegetation.

The shelter takes in wild animals kept as pets that fall sick or are wounded by people, cars or electric shocks.

It gives them veterinary care and, when possible, prepares them for an eventual return to the wild.

“Costa Rican law forbids keeping wild species as pets, but the law isn’t enough because there’s a very deep-rooted custom. People don’t realize that wild animals are not and cannot be pets,” Aguilar told AFP in an interview ahead of the First Congress on Wildlife Rescue, Recovery and Freedom in San Jose.

She said people have a range of reasons for keeping pets such as white-faced capuchin monkeys, green iguanas or songbirds. They are drawn to the animals’ beauty, they want to entertain their children or they feel it brings them social status.

But the underlying problem is that people are largely ignorant of the animals’ diets, growth, life span, habitat, diseases and behavior.

“A family falls in love with a baby white-faced capuchin because it’s funny and affectionate, but when it reaches two years old its behavior will change. It will become aggressive, bite and pull people’s hair. That’s when it becomes a problem at home,” she said.

Such animals often end up being mistreated or killed, or, with luck, in a shelter, she said.

By that point returning them to their native environment is difficult. They lack survival skills and are unlikely to be accepted by other members of their species.

- Traffic in exotic animals -

The international traffic in exotic animals exacerbates the problem.

The illegal $20-billion-a-year trade has taken a major toll on Costa Rica’s biodiversity, as animals are captured and sold abroad, Aguilar said.

One of the goals of the three-day conference is to prod the Costa Rican government to expand environmental education programs for locals, foreign visitors and ecotourism operators.

“It’s important to make people understand that wild animals have to live in the forest, because they have different needs from domesticated animals,” said Aguilar.

Protecting the environment is also key for the Costa Rican economy, which depends heavily on tourism and attracted 2.4 million visitors last year — many of them drawn by the country’s tropical wildlife and forests.


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« Reply #412 on: Today at 06:08 AM »

Japan's annual dolphin slaughter begins at Taiji cove

Bad weather could delay killing on first day of controversial six-month dolphin hunting season, official says

AFP
theguardian.com, Monday 1 September 2014 09.55 BST   

The controversial six-month dolphin hunting season began on Monday in the infamous town of Taiji, but bad weather would delay any killing, a local official told AFP.

The annual catch, in which people from the southwestern town corral hundreds of dolphins into a secluded bay and butcher them, was thrust into the global spotlight in 2009 when it became the subject of the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove.

“The dolphin hunting season started today and will last until the end of February,” said an official of the Taiji fisheries association, adding the season for hunting pilot whales, which also begins today, will last until April.

But bad weather on Monday meant there would be no hunting on the day, he said.

Environmental campaigners are already in situ to watch the hunt, the official said.

Last season, activists from international environmental group Sea Shepherd, who call themselves “Cove Guardians”, streamed live footage of the dolphin capture.

Earlier this year, the slaughter sparked renewed global criticism after US ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy tweeted her concern at the “inhumaneness” of the hunt.

Defenders say it is a tradition and point out that the animals it targets are not endangered, a position echoed by the Japanese government.

They say Western objections are hypocritical and ignore the vastly larger number of cows, pigs and sheep butchered to satisfy demand elsewhere.

But critics of the practice say there is insufficient demand for the animals’ meat, which in any case contains dangerous levels of mercury.

They say the hunt is only profitable because of the high prices live dolphins can fetch when sold to aquariums and dolphin shows.

On Sunday around 30 people marched in Tokyo to protest the hunt, which they say sullies Japan’s reputation abroad.

************

Protest at controversial dolphin hunt leads to arrest of animal rights activists

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, August 31, 2014 10:45 EDT

Fourteen animal rights activists have been detained on the Faroe island of Sandoy in the North Atlantic while trying to stop a controversial dolphin hunt, their organisation said Sunday.

The activists were detained Saturday when attempting to save a pod of 33 pilot whales, members of the dolphin family, as the mammals were driven to shore to be killed by waiting hunting parties, according to environmental group Sea Shepherd.

“The 14 have been under arrest since Saturday, and three of our boats have also been seized,” Lamya Essemlali, president of Sea Shepherd France, told AFP.

Large numbers of pilot whales are slaughtered each year on the Faroe Islands, an autonomous territory within the kingdom of Denmark.

The method involves the mammals being forced into a bay by flotillas of small boats before being hacked to death with hooks and knives.

While many locals defend the hunt as a cultural right, animal rights campaigners have denounced it as a “brutal and archaic mass slaughter”.

The group detained on Saturday included six Sea Shepherd members on shore on Sandoy, and eight who were on three small boats near the island.
Sea Shepherd said a ship from the Danish Navy ordered the environmental organisation’s three boats to stand off and later seized the vessels.

A spokesman for the Danish Armed Forces’ Arctic Command, which is responsible for the Faroe Islands, said it was standard procedure for the Danish Navy to assist the Faroese police in its work. Faroese police could not immediately be reached for comment.

Those arrested were eight French citizens, two South Africans, two Spaniards, one Italian and one Australian, according to Essemlali.

After their arrest, the hunt went ahead and all 33 pilot whales were killed, according to Sea Shepherd.

- ‘Atrocity’ -

One of the boats seized on Saturday, B.S. Sheen, is sponsored by American actor Charlie Sheen, who said he was proud his vessel had taken part in trying to stop the “atrocity.”

“The Faroese whalers brutally slaughtered an entire pod of 33 pilot whales today — several generations taken from the sea — and Denmark is complicit in the killing,” Sheen said in a statement.

The demonstrators were taking part in an ongoing campaign in which hundreds of activists have pledged to patrol the waters around the Faroe Islands to block the killing of pilot whales.

The killings — known locally as “grinds” — have emerged as a prominent celebrity cause, with renowned ballet dancer Sylvie Guillem and former Baywatch star Pamela Anderson among the backers of Sea Shepherd’s campaign.
Since records began, more than 265,000 small cetaceans have been killed in the Faroe Islands, mainly between the months of June and October, according to Sea Shepherd.

It says that 267 pilot whales were killed in one grind last year near the Faroese town of Fuglafjorour.

Whaling in the Faroes stretches back to the earliest Norse settlements more than 1,000 years ago, and community-organised hunts date to at least the 16th century.


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« Reply #413 on: Today at 06:22 AM »


Charlie Sheen says Danish authorities are complicit in pilot whale ‘slaughter’

Actor had donated boat used by activists who were arrested after trying to save pod of 33 pilot whales in Denmark’s Faroe Islands

Australian Associated Press
theguardian.com, Monday 1 September 2014 03.58 BST      

Hollywood star Charlie Sheen has criticised Danish authorities over the arrests of 14 anti-whaling activists in the North Atlantic.

Sheen donated one of three inflatable boats used by Sea Shepherd members to try to save a pod of 33 pilot whales being driven toward hunters on the Faroe island of Sandoy.

Eight activists on the water and six more on land were arrested and detained by Danish officials.

The boats were seized by the Danish navy.

Sheen accused the Danish authorities of being complicit in the “brutal slaughter”.

“I am proud that a vessel bearing my name was there and did all it could to try to stop this atrocity,” the Anger Management star said.

“The 40-foot Zodiac called the BS SHEEN that I donated to Mr [Sea Shepherd leader Paul] Watson’s tireless and heroic efforts, has been shamefully seized. This level of insidious and vicious corruption must be dealt with swiftly and harshly.”

Sea Shepherd claims one of the activists, Spaniard Sergio Toribio, was pulled from a car and assaulted while monitoring the hunt from land, suffering a broken finger.

Large numbers of the mammals are slaughtered each year on the Faroe Islands, an autonomous territory within the kingdom of Denmark. The method involves the mammals being forced into a bay by flotillas of small boats before being hacked to death with hooks and knives.

Many locals defend the hunt as a cultural right, but animal rights campaigners have denounced it as a “brutal and archaic mass slaughter”.

Eight French citizens, two South Africans, one Australian, one Italian and a second Spaniard were arrested.
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'Screaming' cat saves man from fire that gutted house in Melbourne

Craig Jeeves was woken up by his tabby, Sally, and managed to escape with only smoke inhalation injuries

Australian Associated Press
theguardian.com, Monday 1 September 2014 04.59 BST      

    Plucky pet cat saves his owner from his burning #Melbourne home - http://t.co/Ndoo4pa7sF #7NewsMelb pic.twitter.com/xvt1lzHTxA
    — 7NewsMelbourne (@7NewsMelbourne) September 1, 2014

A Melbourne man owes his life to his cat, Sally, after she woke him up as his house was burning down.

Thanks to the quick-thinking tabby, 49-year-old Craig Jeeves was alerted to the early morning fire in his Melbourne home and managed to escape.

“She jumped on my head and was screaming at me,” he told the Nine network.

A Country Fire Authority captain, Paul Spinks, said the owner was lucky to be alive. “The cat woke him up and he found the fire and proceeded to get outside,” Spinks said.

Fire crews found Jeeves in the bushes outside his Wandin North home.

He was treated for smoke inhalation at the scene and will be staying with neighbours until he is able to rebuild the property.

The home was gutted by the fire and Jeeves lost everything. “I’m happy to be alive but you can’t replace the memories,” he said.
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