Scottish Wildcats are Virtually Extinct, but European Cousins Could Help | Care2 Causes

A new study finds that Scottish wildcats are now functionally extinct in the wild, with only a handful of so-called “pure” animals remaining in the wild.

The research, carried out by a team from the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) at the Wildgenes Lab at Edinburgh Zoo, found that among the nearly 300 wildcats they tested, all of those living in the wild shared what has been dubbed a hybrid gene pool. This means that Scotland’s wildcats are now “virtually extinct”, the authors say, because the wildcats have bred with the now-ubiquitous domestic cats of Scotland, watering down their own genes to such an extent that there appears to be no true population of wildcats left.

Dr. Helen Senn, head of conservation and science at RZSS, told The Press and Journal, ”Crossbreeding with domestic feral cats has long been known to be a major threat to the Scottish wildcat. We now have genetic data which confirms our belief that the vast majority of Scottish wildcats living in the wild are hybrids to one extent or another.”

The population sample was an interesting mix. There were 125 “wild-living” cats who were deceased but whose cadavers had been collected over the last quarter of a century. In addition to these, there were the corpses of 60 cats believed to be wildcats that farmers had shot between 1895 and 1985. Added to this were 19 cats that were trapped by Scottish Natural Heritage, 72 confirmed wildcats, and 19 domestic cats (or their DNA) sampled from across Edinburgh. Together this allowed the researchers a good basis for unpicking the current makeup of Scotland’s wildcat population.

They found that there may be a small minority of wildcats whose genetics would put them in a class of “pure” wildcats, or at least close enough to that end of the spectrum to be a meaningful DNA source for future breeding campaigns. The vast majority of wildcats, however, are so hybridized that they are not viable. Until now, scientists suspected this to be the case, but they did not have concrete data to confirm it. Now they do, and it begs the question: how can we save Scotland’s majestic wildcats?
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How Do We Save Scottish Wildcats?

As few as 35 pure wildcats remain in the Scottish wilds, with feral cats outnumbering the wildcats 3,000 to one. To put it bluntly, there is now no way of helping the wildcat population in Scotland by relying on the population alone, as there are too few animals from which to build genetic diversity. However, there are some options.

Wildcats can be bred in captivity—which, for these purposes, means sheltered enclosures that are as close to their wild habitats as possible—but that alone is slow-going and would likely require greater genetic diversity than we currently have at our disposal in domestic zoos and wildlife facilities.

There is another option that can supplement and support this approach: introducing wildcats from abroad to enlarge the gene pool and create a more diverse platform on which to rebuild the wildcat population.

This kind of approach requires clearing a number of regulatory hurdles, and Scottish Natural Heritage would have to carry out the proper assessments and give approval, but there is precedent for an approach like this in Scotland. A 2009 project released Norwegian beavers in Argyll, then supplemented them with beavers from elsewhere in Scotland, helping to bring the beaver population back.

Wildcats live in several places across Europe, India and Africa, but they are on the IUCN Red List because of their low numbers. They are currently rated as “least concern”, but scientists say a new assessment is warranted. As is the case in many of these places, wildcat territory in Scotland has diminished rapidly over the past century. With the encroachment of feral domestic cats who, through sheer numbers can out-compete the wildcats, there is yet another layer of pressure as the wildcats—who aren’t choosy about their partners—cross paths with ferals and mate.

However, as serious as this situation is, there is hope. Unlike with issues facing other animals that involve complexities like fighting disease or finding a way to slow climate change, the wildcats’ problem is, while not simple, more easy to manage.

Researchers say that, as with other wildlife transplanting operations, we can build a framework and create reintroduction and management schemes to help the wildcats. This will take time, resources and financing from the government, but there seems no overriding reason why we can’t help the Scottish wildcats bounce back and protect their legacy for many years to come.

This research was a first step: by shining a light on just how bad the problem is we can take the first steps to solving it.
Take Action

Lack of diversity isn’t the only issue Scottish wildcats are facing. Deforestation is threatening their habitat. Join over 78,000 Care2 members and sign this petition asking the Scottish government to protect this endangered species.

https://www.care2.com/causes/scottish-wildcats-are-virtually-extinct-but-european-cousins-could-help.html

Photo credit: Getty Images.

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Feds Begin Selling Wild Horses Captured in California for $1 Each

Straight from the Horse's Heart

as published on EcoWatch by Lorraine Chow

“The Forest Service is treating these national treasures like trash by selling them for one dollar a piece…”

About 200 horses are available for adoption and sale until Feb. 18. The fee for purchase “with limitations” has been reduced to $1 per horse, down from the original price of $25. The fee for adoption is $125.

“With limitations” includes a stipulation that prohibits using the horses for human consumption. Other requirements include appropriate transportation, adequate space and healthy accommodations for the animals, according to Ruidoso News.

The horses now up for sale and adoption are all 10 years and older. They were among the 932 mustangs that were gathered via helicopters in the territory near Alturas, California between Oct. 10 and Nov. 8.

The gathering of wild horses has prompted fierce debate about how to control populations. On the one hand, the…

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Breaking! Conservation Groups File New Lawsuit Against The Trump Administration For Failing To Protect Giraffes – World Animal News

By WAN –
December 6, 2018

Conservation groups have sued the Trump administration for failing to consider protections for Africa’s rapidly dwindling giraffe population under the Endangered Species Act.
Yesterday’s lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington, D.C., comes weeks after the International Union for the Conservation of Nature updated its assessment of Africa’s remaining giraffes, reaffirming that the species is “vulnerable” to extinction, and classifying two subspecies as “critically endangered.”
Filed by the Center for Biological Diversity, Humane Society International, Humane Society of the United States, and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), the suit challenges the refusal of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to accept an April 2017 petition seeking Endangered Species Act protection for giraffes. The agency was required to respond within 90 days, but 19 months have passed without action.
“Giraffes capture our imaginations from childhood on, but many people don’t realize how few are left in the wild,” Tanya Sanerib, international legal director at the Center for Biological Diversity said in a statement. “Instead of throwing these unique animals a lifeline under the Endangered Species Act, Trump officials are twiddling their thumbs. Trump will be to blame if future generations know giraffes only as toys and not the long-necked icons of Africa.”
Fewer than 100,000 giraffes remain in the wild, and the population dropped nearly 40% over the past three decades. The species is gravely imperiled by habitat loss, civil unrest, and illegal hunting for their meat, they are also threatened by the international trade in bone carvings, skins, and trophies.
“The Trump administration would rather allow its rich donors to mount giraffe trophies on their walls than protect giraffes,” said Elly Pepper, deputy director of NRDC’s Wildlife Trade Initiative. “Giraffes are headed toward extinction, in part due to our country’s importation of giraffe parts and trophies. It’s shameful, though unsurprising, that the Interior Department has refused to protect them under the Endangered Species Act.”
On average, the United States reportedly imports more than one giraffe hunting trophy a day, and the country imported more than 21,400 giraffe-bone carvings between 2006 and 2015.
Protection under the Endangered Species Act would help track and curb imports of giraffe bones, trophies, and other parts, and increase funding for conservation efforts in Africa.

https://worldanimalnews.com/breaking-conservation-groups-file-new-lawsuit-against-the-trump-administration-for-failing-to-protect-giraffes/

 

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Stop the Hunt On Canned Hunting Permits – Petition Deadline December 19, 2018 – Animal Legal Defense Fund

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https://aldf.org/issue/stop-the-hunt-permits/

Trump Administration Rejects Ban On M-44 ‘Cyanide Bombs’ That Killed More Than 13,000 Animals Last Year Alone – World Animal News

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By WAN –
November 29, 2018
In yet another unfathomable move taking place under the Trump Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has refused to ban M-44s, also known as cyanide bombs, which cause agonizing death for thousands of animals in the United States every year.
The agency’s decision comes in response to a 2017 petition calling for a nationwide ban of the lethal devices that was authored by The Center For Biological Diversity and WildEarth Guardians, as well as signed by several other wildlife conservation groups.
The devices spray deadly sodium cyanide into the mouths of unsuspecting coyotes, foxes, and other carnivores lured by smelly bait. The fact is that anything or anyone that pulls on the baited M-44 device can be killed or severely injured by the deadly spray.
As previously reported by WAN, M-44s temporarily blinded a child and killed three family dogs in two separate incidents in Idaho and Wyoming last year alone. A wolf was also accidentally killed by an M-44 set in Oregon last year. Idaho currently has a moratorium on M-44 use on public lands resulting from the tragedies.
“Cyanide traps are indiscriminate killers that just can’t be used safely,” Collette Adkins, an attorney and biologist at the Center, said in a statement. “We’ll keep fighting for a permanent nationwide ban, which is the only way to protect people, pets, and imperiled wildlife from the EPA’s poison.”The EPA has registered sodium cyanide for use in M-44s by Wildlife Services, the secretive U.S. Department of Agriculture wildlife-killing program, as well as by certain state agencies in South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, New Mexico, and Texas.
“The government continues to prioritize the minority anti-wildlife ranching industry over making public lands safe for people, imperiled wildlife and companion animals,” said Bethany Cotton, wildlife program director for WildEarth Guardians. “These dangerous, indiscriminate devices have absolutely no place on public lands, especially given no evidence exists that they actually reduce conflict.”
According to Wildlife Services’ own data, M-44s killed 13,232 animals, mostly coyotes and foxes, in 2017. Of these, more than 200 deaths were nontarget animals, including a wolf, family dogs, opossums, raccoons, ravens, and skunks.
Unfortunately, as per the Center, these numbers are likely a significant undercount of the death toll, as Wildlife Services is notorious for poor data collection and an entrenched “shoot, shovel, shut up” mentality.

https://worldanimalnews.com/breaking-trump-administration-rejects-ban-on-m-44-cyanide-bombs-that-killed-more-than-13000-animals-last-year-alone/

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Petition: This Zoo’s Dangerous Wild Animal Encounter Program Must End — One Small Child’s Already Been Hurt

thepetitionsite.com
This Zoo’s Dangerous Wild Animal Encounter Program Must End — One Small Child’s Already Been Hurt

by: Care2 Team
recipient: Potawatomi Zoo

3,363 SUPPORTERS – 10,000 GOAL

Earlier this month, a mother and son went to the zoo to see some wild animals, but they never could have expected exactly how wild their encounter would be.

It all happened when a group of children went to celebrate a birthday party at a zoo in Indiana. The Potawatomi Zoo has an “ambassador animal” program which they believe gives their guests a unique opportunity to get up close and personal to some of their collection. For a hefty fee, you and your party can “invite” a wild animal to your event at the zoo.

That’s how Copper a wild African serval cat ended up in the unnatural situation of being used as a prop for a “meet-and-greet” at a child’s birthday party. Surrounded by screaming children, under bright indoor lights is never a situation a serval would find itself in the wild. When one of the mothers knelt down with her child to get a close up with the cat, Copper decided he had had enough and struck out, swiping the boy with his paw and biting him on the head.

In the video, one could hear gasps and screams as the mother pulls her child away from the cat.

Zoos should know better than almost anyone that wild animals shouldn’t be forced to interact with people, especially children. Doing so puts both the animal and the child at risk. The child, in this case, was lucky, but it could have been much worse. For example, there is no vaccine for rabies for wild cats, the only way to know if a cat like Copper had rabies would be to put him down and test him. If the child’s mother was worried about her son catching rabies, the authorities would have to kill Copper. Risking his life, just so the zoo could make a little extra cash.

A spokesperson for the zoo says that Copper has now been taken out of the program for the time being. But he never should have been forced to participate in it in the first place. No wild animal is completely safe, especially around children.

The Potawatomi Zoo must stop endangering their pets and their public with this misguided program. Sign the petition and demand that they stop using wild animals in their ambassador animals program.more

Sign Petition

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/682/951/283/

Heartbreaking News! 2 More Of The 6 Endangered Black Rhinos Relocated From South Africa To The Republic Of Chad Found Dead; Only 2 Remain – World Animal News

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By Lauren Lewis –
November 6, 2018

As reported by WAN earlier this year, six critically endangered black rhinos were translocated to a national park in the Republic Of Chad in North Central Africa from South Africa, to reintroduce the species after a nearly 50-year absence.
On October 22nd, WAN shared the tragic news that two of the six black rhinos died after their carcasses were found in Zakouma National Park.
Today, WAN sadly mourns the death of another two of the endangered black rhinos.
In a joint statement, the Governments of South Africa and the Republic of Chad, along with African Parks and SANParks, confirmed that the total mortalities has now grown to four, but stated that none of the deceased rhinos had been poached.
While the cause of their deaths are being investigated, the statement continued to explain that, “On the advice of a team of veterinarians experienced in working with black rhinos, the remaining two animals are being recaptured and placed in holding facilities in order to facilitate closer management.”
A SANParks veterinarian was dispatched to Zakouma National Park to assist with the process and one rhino has since been captured and is reportedly doing well in their enclosure.
Meanwhile, post-mortems have been conducted on the rhino carcasses and various samples of blood, tissue, and fecal matter were sent to specialist pathology laboratories in South Africa. Histopathological results thus far have not indicated infectious diseases or plant toxicity as the cause of death. Serological evidence has however indicated exposure to trypanosomes, a blood borne parasite transmitted by tsetse flies, but at this stage it is not suspected to be the cause of the mortalities.
Low fat reserves suggest that maladaptation by the rhinos to their new environment is likely the underlying cause, although tests to be taken on brain and spinal fluid may shed additional light on their exact cause of death.
The Governments of the Republic of South Africa and the Republic of Chad, including SANParks and African Parks remain active, as efforts continue to be made to establish clarity around the exact cause of death of the four black rhinos, and to safeguard the remaining two animals.
The six rhinos had been held in bomas in the national park for two months after their arrival in Chad on May 4th, before being released into a temporary sanctuary for another two months to enable their acclimation to their new environment.
In late August, the sanctuary fence was removed and the rhinos were allowed to roam freely in the park where they continued to be monitored.
The translocation took place in terms of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries on the reintroduction of black rhinos in Chad, undertaken to restore critical biodiversity and aid the long-term conservation of the species on the continent.
There are only an estimated 5,000 black rhinos left in the wild in Africa.

https://worldanimalnews.com/heartbreaking-news-2-more-of-the-6-endangered-black-rhinos-relocated-from-south-africa-to-republic-of-chad-found-dead-only-2-remain/

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TAGS:Africa,Animal Protection,black rhinos,Rwanda,South Africa

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Breaking! Court Stops U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service From Jeopardizing Red Wolf Survival After The Department Violated Protection Acts – World Animal News

By WAN –
November 5, 2018
Today, a federal judge issued an order declaring that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) violated the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act in its rollback of protections for the world’s only wild population of red wolves, who live in eastern North Carolina.
As reported by WAN last week, the controversial plan by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to drastically reduce protection for the nation’s only wild population of endangered red wolves, had met nearly unanimous opposition from more than 100,000 members of the public.
Out of 108,124 comments submitted to the Fish and Wildlife Service on the proposal, 99.9% spoke out in favor of the red wolves and their need for strong federal protections. North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper also spoke out in support of the continued recovery of the nation’s only wild population of endangered red wolves.
Fewer than 50 comments, with 13 of these coming from a single real estate developer, supported the USFWS’ proposal to restrict red wolves to federal lands in Dare County.
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina Chief Judge Terrence W. Boyle also made the court’s September 29th, 2016 order stopping the USFWS from capturing and killing red wolves and authorizing private landowners to do the same, permanent.
In examining the USFWS’ previous decisions, Judge Boyle wrote that “taken together, these actions go beyond the agency’s discretion and operate to violate the USFWS mandate to recover this species in the wild.”
“For four years now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has been dismantling one of the most successful predator reintroductions in United States history,” Sierra Weaver, senior attorney for the Southern Environmental Law Center said in a statement.
“The service knows how to protect and recover the red wolf in the wild, but it stopped listening to its scientists and started listening to bureaucrats instead,” continued the Center which, along with the Animal Welfare Institute, the Red Wolf Coalition, and Defenders of Wildlife, sued the USFWS. “The law doesn’t allow the agency to just walk away from species conservation, like it did here.”

“The district court’s ruling today makes it clear that the USFWS’ recent management decisions have failed to protect the red wolf population,” said Johanna Hamburger, wildlife attorney for the Animal Welfare Institute. “Scientists have warned that if the USFWS continues to ignore the recovery needs of the red wolf, these animals may once again be extinct in the wild by 2024. The court has ruled that this is unacceptable and that the USFWS has a duty under the Endangered Species Act to implement proactive conservation measures to achieve species recovery.”
The USFWS attempted to avoid court action on the conservation groups’ lawsuit by proposing a new rule in June of 2018 to restrict wild red wolves to one National Wildlife Refuge and a bombing range in eastern North Carolina, while allowing the immediate killing of any wolves that live on or wander into nonfederal lands. Previously, these wolves could roam a designated 1.7 million-acre, five-county Red Wolf Recovery Area.
Before the USFWS began dismantling successful conservation actions, the red wolf recovery program served as a model for reintroduction efforts and was widely celebrated as a success for 25 years. Once common throughout the Southeast, intensive predator control programs and loss of habitat drove the red wolf to extinction in the wild in the late 1970s. In an attempt to recover the population, red wolves bred in captivity were reintroduced in the late 1980s on a North Carolina peninsula within their native range.

https://worldanimalnews.com/breaking-court-stops-u-s-fish-wildlife-service-from-jeopardizing-red-wolf-survival-after-the-department-violated-protection-acts/

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Petition: Demand China Reinstate the Ban on Rhino Horn and Tiger Bone!

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Demand China Reinstate the Ban on Rhino Horn and Tiger Bone!
5-7 minutes

We are petitioning CHINA to reinstate their ban on RHINO HORN and TIGER BONE as their recent reversal will have devastating effects on vulnerable rhino and tiger populations and will set conservation efforts back by decades. There is no scientific backing that rhino horns and tiger bones have any medicinal uses and in any case, it’s morally wrong to senselessly kill animals for our selfish benefit. Their lives are their own and their lives have value independent of their usefulness to others.

As reported by National Geographic on October 29th 2018:

China legalizes rhino horn and tiger bone for medical purposes. The materials have no proven medicinal value in humans, and conservationists call the move a major setback for wild populations.

In China, rhino horn and tiger bone may now be legally used in medical research or traditional medicine following a controversial announcement by the government this morning. The animal specimens may be obtained only from farms, according to the announcement, but conservationists say this surprising move may open the floodgates for a surge in illegal activity and threaten vulnerable animal populations.

The move is “very concerning,” says Leigh Henry, director of wildlife policy at the World Wildlife Fund. Discerning what animals were obtained legally from farms rather than illegally from the wild would be incredibly difficult, so this decision would give cover to traffickers, she says. Rhinos and tigers are both endangered in the wild, and their trade is prohibited. “WWF urgently calls on China to maintain the ban on tiger bone and rhino horn trade which has been so critical in conserving these iconic species. This should be expanded to cover trade in all tiger parts and products,” she says.

China’s action stands in sharp contrast to the country’s moves to combat poaching in recent years. The country has had a 25-year-old ban in place preventing the import or export of these products. And the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies—the official group that dictates what can be used in traditional medicine—also removed rhino horn and tiger bone from its list of products approved for use on patients (though the market still existed for them).

Two years ago, China also announced that it would close its domestic ivory market by the end of 2017, earning widespread praise. Conservation groups championed the move as a necessary step to help reduce ivory demand and stamp down poaching of African elephants.

Debbie Banks, Tiger Campaign Leader at the Environmental Investigation Agency, a nonprofit with offices in London and Washington, D.C., says that today’s announcement undermines China’s stance on wildlife protection. “China’s reputation as a leader in conservation following their domestic ban on the sale of ivory now lies in tatters,” she said in an email. “The news today,” she says, “seriously jeopardizes the future survival of wild tigers by stimulating demand for their body parts instead of eradicating demand,” adding that it also puts rhinos at risk in their African and Asian range countries. “The news today is a staggering display of brazen disregard for global opinion.”

The reason China took this step remains unclear. Chinese officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment. But the growing number of tiger farms in China and efforts to farm rhinos there may be a key driver, environmental groups say. “We’ve been concerned for a long time about the tiger farms in China and the increasing numbers of farms there,” Henry says. “Captive tigers are incredibly expensive to feed and care for, so as these numbers grew, so did pressure on the Chinese government to allow a regulated trade in tiger products. China’s decision is what many of us have feared for over a decade.” The Environmental Investigation Agency had reported in 2013 that at least several thousand tigers were being kept at hundreds of farms across the country. Moreover, China also has reportedly started importing rhinos for potential farming.

Susan Lieberman, vice president for international policy at the Wildlife Conservation Society, a New York-based nonprofit working on global conservation, also believes that the growing number of farmed tigers may be a major factor behind China’s decision. The new legality of tiger bone and rhino horn use, she says, will be a major win for traffickers. “You would want there to be a legal market to hide behind,” she says. Without DNA tests of these products, there’s no way to know if their source is a farm or the wild.

Rhino horn is made from keratin—a protein found in fingernails and hair—and the product is falsely said to help treat everything from cancer to gout when consumed in its powder form. There are no proven medicinal benefits in humans from either product. The most sparing evidence has been brought to bear claiming that rhino horn may somehow help lower fever, at least in rodents. Certainly, cheaper, more readily available medicines such as acetaminophen or aspirin are far more effective, Lieberman says. Tiger bone crushed and made into a paste has been said to be usable to treat a variety of ailments, including rheumatism and back pain. But Lieberman says, “I know of no evidence for that.”

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/958/270/005/demand-china-reinstate-the-ban-on-rhino-horn-and-tiger-bone/?TAP=1724

Trump Administration Withholding Life-Saving Protection For 78 Species That Are At Risk Of Extinction – World Animal News

By WAN –
October 22, 2018

Photo from Defenders of Wildlife
For the second year in a row, the Trump administration has fallen short in protecting species under the Endangered Species Act, ultimately putting dozens of native animals at heightened risk of extinction.
According to a new analysis by the Center for Biological Diversity, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to make protection decisions for 57 species or designate critical habitat for another 21 promised under a seven-year workplan developed by the agency in 2016.The agency is under the leadership of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.
“Zinke and other Trump officials are preventing the Fish and Wildlife Service from doing critical work to protect species from extinction,” said Noah Greenwald, the Center’s endangered species director in a statement. “The wolverine, lesser prairie chicken, and Hermes copper butterfly are all species Trump and Zinke left high and dry.”
The workplan was created to address a backlog of more than 500 imperiled species awaiting protection decisions. In fiscal year 2018, the workplan called for 82 separate decisions about listing species or designating critical habitat. Another 13 decisions were never completed in fiscal year 2017, for a total of 95 decisions.
Instead, the agency only managed to make 18 decisions in 2018, resulting in listing of only four species and proposed protection for only eight species. Another six species were denied protection, including one, the beaverpond marstonia, which had gone extinct while waiting for protection.
“The Trump administration’s anti-regulatory agenda is turning it into the extinction presidency,” said Greenwald. “The vast majority of the American public wants to see endangered species protected, but administration officials are flushing these imperiled plants and animals down the toilet for their patrons in the oil industry and other polluters.”
Delays in protecting species have real consequences. At least 46 species have become extinct while waiting for protection since the Endangered Species Act was passed in 1973. During the Obama administration, a total of 357 species were protected for a rate of 37 per year. Likewise, under the Clinton administration, a total of 523 species were protected, for a rate of 62 species per year.
So far, the Trump administration, which has protected just 14 species — all but one proposed under the previous administration — is shaping up to be even worse than the Bush administration, when only 62 species were protected.

https://worldanimalnews.com/trump-administration-withholding-life-saving-protection-for-78-species-that-are-at-risk-of-extinction/

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TAGS:Animal News,Animal Protection,Animal Welfare,conservation,endangered,
Endangered Species Act,Trump Administration

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© Copyright 2018 – WorldAnimalNews.com

Breaking! New Lawsuit Seeks Online Access to Federal Elephant & Lion Trophy-Import Records – World Animal News

By WAN –
October 19, 2018

The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society International, Center for Biological Diversity, and Born Free USA sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service yesterday for violating the law by failing to post online elephant and lion trophy-permitting records on the Internet.
Under 1996 amendments to the Freedom of Information Act, agencies are obligated to post their decisions — including orders, policies, and interpretations — online for public inspection. The same obligation applies to certain types of records that are frequently requested and have been released in the past. The Service’s FOIA log demonstrates that conservationists, journalists and others request elephant and lion trophy-import records often enough that this information should be posted online automatically as soon as the agency receives it.
Despite immense public interest in the government’s decision on whether to allow the import of hunting trophies from imperiled species, and despite repeated attempts by conservation organizations to shed light on this important conservation issue, the Fish and Wildlife Service is covertly conducting this Endangered Species Act permitting program.
“Although it is unlawful for an American to import an elephant or lion trophy without first obtaining a permit, the public has been systemically deprived of contributing relevant scientific information to influence the federal government’s implementation of these critical elephant and lion conservation measures,” Anna Frostic, managing wildlife attorney with the Humane Society of the United States, said in a statement. “FWS is openly flouting its statutory mandate to proactively post frequently requested material online.”
The lawsuit asks a federal district court in Virginia to order the Fish and Wildlife Service to routinely post online elephant and lion trophy-permit applications, the agency’s permitting decisions, and related findings on the sustainability of hunting species threatened with extinction.
“The Fish and Wildlife Service needs to come clean and let the public know how many elephants and lions are killed to decorate rich Americans’ living rooms,” said Tanya Sanerib, legal director of the Center for Biological Diversity’s international program. “With huge threats facing Africa’s imperiled wildlife, the unlawful secrecy about these bloody imports is totally unacceptable.”
For most of the past decade, according to tallies from the CITES trade database, United States trophy hunters killed and imported the parts of approximately 500 African lions and 500 African elephants each year. Both species are now listed as threatened with extinction under the Endangered Species Act.
Since Ryan Zinke became interior secretary, the Service has approved elephant and lion trophy imports from countries such as Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia and South Africa. President Trump, meanwhile, recently referred to trophy hunting as a “horror show” despite the fact that his sons participate in the so-called “sport.”
“We have seen an alarming increase of attacks on the Endangered Species Act and the imperiled species it protects from both Congress and this Administration,” said Angela Grimes, Born Free USA Acting CEO. “By conducting this permitting program under the veil of secrecy, the FWS is further attempting to weaken and degrade the effectiveness of the ESA. To fully understand the impacts to threatened African lions and elephants, this information must be accessible to the public. Only then can we effectively protect these animals and the integrity of the ESA.”
The new lawsuit follows a pending court case filed by the same plaintiffs contesting the merits of the administration’s decision last November to lift an import ban on Zimbabwe elephant trophy imports and to allow imports of lion trophies from Zimbabwe to the United States, and its March 1st decision to shift to a “case-by-case” process for making trophy import findings.

https://worldanimalnews.com/breaking-lawsuit-seeks-online-access-to-federal-elephant-lion-trophy-import-records/

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TAGS:Africa,Animal Protection,Animal Welfare,animal welfare organizations,endangered animals,
Endangered Species Act

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© Copyright 2018 – WorldAnimalNews.com

The Jane Goodall Institute Launches ForeverWild Campaign To Protect Endangered Species From Wildlife Trafficking – World Animal News

By WAN –
October 9, 2018

With the imminent publication of Horizon Scan, a ground-breaking report that, for the first time, identifies and prioritizes the most urgent issues fueling wildlife trafficking, and as delegates gather for the Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference in London, UK, the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) announces the launch of the ForeverWild campaign to help end trafficking of endangered species, many on the brink of extinction.
“Without a concerted global effort to stop trafficking, primates and other wildlife will be gone for good. My hope is that we can work together and end one of the most dangerous threats to the survival of chimpanzees, elephants, rhinos, and many other animals for whom, like us, this planet is their only home, Dr. Jane Goodall, world-renowned primatologist and ethologist, said in a statement.
“Wildlife trafficking is a global problem that demands a global response,” noted JGI’s Zara Bending, a legal expert in wildlife trafficking, who is a contributor to both Horizon Scan and JGI Australia‘s campaign to end the domestic trade in ivory and rhino horn. “There are actions everyone can take to turn the tide and put an end to the illegal wildlife trade. It starts with becoming informed and advocating for better law enforcement while eliminating demand for trafficked animals and animal parts.”
According to the most up-to-date analysis, as reported in Horizon Scan, emerging issues to watch closely range from rapid growth in urbanization in many African countries to increasingly active trading in endangered species through online platforms.
The ongoing migration of rural populations to urban centers has caused demand for bushmeat (wild animals including endangered chimpanzees sold as meat) to spike. At the same time, monitoring the global online sales of exotic pets and animal parts poses new challenges which must be addressed.
JGI is pushing back against wildlife crime on several fronts. JGI has contributed to the development of new facial recognition software to counter online marketing of great apes. JGI also operates one of Africa‘s largest chimpanzee sanctuaries where 138 rescued chimpanzees are protected and cared for under conditions that most closely mimic a natural life in the wild.
Providing sanctuary for chimpanzees that have been victims of trafficking is pivotal to ending the practice. Enforcement agencies can only be effective if there is a safe place to bring confiscated animals. Simultaneously, JGI is actively collaborating with local communities to educate people on how and why to protect great apes from the threat of illegal trade.
Through the ForeverWild (#4EverWild) campaign, the Jane Goodall Institute aims to raise awareness of the urgency with which we must end wildlife crime. In addition to JGI’s multiple approaches to stopping trafficking of chimpanzees, local JGI chapters around the world are engaged in efforts to save region-specific wildlife by reducing demand for exotic pets and animal parts, changing government policies, and public engagement activities.
“The Jane Goodall Institute is in a unique position in that we can use our world-wide network to fight illegal trade of great apes and other wildlife in many places and in many ways whether it’s reducing demand or supporting sustainable alternatives for income generation,” concluded Patrick van Veen, Chair of JGI Global.”If we come together, we can still secure a future where wild animals can live safely in the wild.”

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One Of Our Least Favorite Members Of The U.S. Government, Secretary Zinke, Expands Hunting & Fishing at 30 National Wildlife Refuges in The United States – World Animal News

By WAN –
September 10, 2018
Sadly, one of our least favorite members of the U.S. government, Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, will open more than 251,000 acres of land to new or expanded hunting and fishing at 30 national wildlife refuges across the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Wildlife Refuge System. This will shockingly bring the number of units where the public can hunt to 377, and the number for fishing to 312.
This will open more acres to the hunting and fishing of many threatened species, many of which are on the brink of extinction in the United States. These species need to be able to recover before they could be wiped out, not only by hunting, but by illegal poaching as well.
Zinke’s final rule outlines expanded hunting and fishing at 136 national wildlife refuges. The changes will be implemented in the 2018-2019 hunting seasons. This is an urgent matter that all U.S. citizens should be able to voice their opinions about.
A shocking quote comes from Cynthia Martinez, Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System: “Hunting and fishing are family activities that pass down from generation to generation. National wildlife refuges provide all Americans with places to hunt, fish, observe the natural world firsthand, and experience the great outdoors.” Really?
“Hunting and fishing are not family activities and should not be taught to children of any age. The last thing that this world needs is to teach children that killing and violence is acceptable. What we really need to be teaching our children is to have more compassion to save our planet and it’s species for future generations to come,” stated Katie Cleary, President of Peace 4 Animals & WAN.
Secretary Zinke, an avid hunter, said in a statement: “The last thing I want to see is hunting to become an elite sport, rather than a tradition passed on from generation to generation. Today’s announcement protects critical ‘CON-servation’ funding, and ensures sportsmen have access to public lands for generations to come.”
“This couldn’t be more false. Hunting is not a tradition and we are not living in the stone age. We are a progressive world that needs forward-thinking leaders who care about the welfare of the species of who it is our job to protect as the stewards of this planet,” continued Cleary.
The amount of funding brought in from eco-tourism and photo safari’s worldwide is much greater than that of what hunting brings in per year. A 2017 report, commissioned by Humane Society International and conducted by Economists at Large, found that the total economic contribution of hunters is at most an estimated 0.03 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). In Botswana, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, hunting brings in just 0.78 percent or less of the overall tourism spending and has only a marginal impact on employment in those countries, providing approximately 0.76 percent or less of overall tourism jobs. It is estimated that roughly 105.3 million U.S. travelers prioritize vacations dedicated to giving back to our environment, planet, and animals, than not.
Findings from the report include:

While overall tourism in the eight study countries is between 2.8 percent and 5.1 percent of GDP, the total economic contribution of trophy hunters is, at most, an estimated 0.03 percent of GDP. As the report’s author explains: “In terms of the wider tourism economy, which relies heavily on wildlife resources, trophy hunting is relatively insignificant.”
Trophy hunting brings in less than $132 million in tourism spending to the eight study countries out of $17 billion annual tourism spending, or just 0.78 percent. Safari Club International (SCI) wrongly alleged that trophy hunting-related tourism contributes $426 million annually.
Trophy hunting has only a marginal impact on employment in the eight countries, estimated between 7,500-15,500 jobs. Even when using inflated SCI estimates of direct employment contribution from trophy hunting (19,733 jobs), this is still only 0.76 percent of 2,589,000 average jobs generated by overall tourism.
Non-hunting tourism industry is growing much faster and has a much brighter future in Africa. Between 2000 and 2014, overall tourism spending in the eight study countries grew every four months by as much as the annual claimed direct value of the entire trophy hunting industry ($326 million).
Foreign trophy hunters make up less than 0.1 percent of tourists in the studied region.
Non-trophy hunting tourism employs 132 times more people than trophy hunting.
The average increase in tourist arrivals over 54 days in Namibia and 60 days in South Africa exceeded the total of annual foreign trophy hunter arrivals. The growth over a year in general tourist numbers is about six times larger than a year’s worth of hunting tourists.
Because trophy hunting is a tiny part of overall tourism sector, with little scope for sustained future growth, even a small effect of trophy hunting deterring growth in other tourism uses (like eco-tourism) may overwhelm its own economic benefits.

Facts:
As well as being cruel, trophy hunting is detrimental to conservation because:

Hunters kill the strongest animals that are critical to strengthening the gene pool.
Hunting quotas are frequently set without a solid scientific basis.
Age restrictions for hunted animals are ignored so that, for example, lions are killed as juveniles before they can contribute to the genetic pool.
Corruption prevents trophy hunting funds from making it to conservation.
U.S.-based SCI is one of world’s largest pro-trophy hunting organizations with 50,000 members. It keeps a record book of kills and offers awards in dozens of categories, such as Bears of the World, South American Indigenous Animals, and the World Hunter of the Year for which a hunter must kill more than 300 animals across the globe.
SCI’s 2017 convention featured more than 900 international hunting outfitters and auctioned off almost 1,000 mammals in global hunts valued at over US$5.3 million. In 2015, this convention brought in nearly US$14.4 million. Some of the most shocking SCI 2017 auction items offered up were a Canadian polar bear hunt (valued at USD $72,000) and two Namibian elephants hunts (valued at USD $25,000 and USD $35,000).

Sadly, per Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, hunting and/or fishing will expand or be opened on the following refuges:
Arkansas

Felsenthal National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game, and big game hunting.

California

San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird hunting, and open sport fishing for the first time.

Florida

Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge: Opens wild turkey hunting for the first time.

Illinois

Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game and big game hunting.

Illinois and Missouri

Great River National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game and big game hunting.

Illinois and Wisconsin

Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge: Opens migratory game bird, upland game, and big game hunting to all legal species in the State of Illinois.

Indiana

Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game, big game hunting, and sport fishing

Maine

Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game and big game hunting.
Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing white-tailed deer and wild turkey hunting.

Maine and New Hampshire

Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge: Opens wild turkey hunting for the first time, and expands existing migratory game bird, upland game, and big game hunting.

Maryland

Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.
Patuxent Research Refuge: Expands existing white-tailed deer and wild turkey hunting.

Michigan

Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge: Opens hunting of certain migratory bird, small game, and furbearers, and expands existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

Minnesota

Glacial Ridge National Wildlife Refuge: Opens certain gamebird and small mammal hunting for the first time, and expands existing migratory game bird, upland game, and big game hunting.

Montana

Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing big game hunting.
Swan River National Wildlife Refuge: Opens big game hunting for the first time.

New Jersey

Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge: Opens wild turkey and squirrel hunting for the first time, and expands existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

New Jersey and New York

Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird hunting and sport fishing.

New Mexico

Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge: Opens Eurasian-collared dove and Gambel’s quail hunting, and expands existing migratory game bird hunting.

North Dakota

J. Clark Salyer National Wildlife Refuge: Opens moose hunting for the first time.
Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge: Opens moose hunting for the first time.

Ohio

Cedar Point National Wildlife Refuge: Opens white-tailed deer hunting for the first time.
Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge: Opens hunting of certain gamebirds, small mammals, and furbearers for the first time, and expands existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

Oregon

Cold Springs National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game, and big game hunting.
Upper Klamath National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird hunting.
William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing sport fishing.

Pennsylvania

Cherry Valley National Wildlife Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird, upland game and big game hunting.
John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum: Opens white-tailed deer hunting for the first time.

Utah

Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge: Expands existing migratory game bird and upland game hunting.

Wisconsin

Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge: Opens hunting of certain gamebirds, small mammals, and furbearers for the first time, and expands existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

Please contact The U.S. Department of the Interior and tell them why you oppose opening up more National Wildlife Refuges to hunting and fishing.
Mailing Address:
Department of the Interior
1849 C Street, N.W.
Washington DC 20240
Contact Form HERE!
Phone (with employee directory): (202) 208-3100
National Parks Service
Office of Communications
1849 C St NW
Washington DC 20240
202-208-6843
Contact Form HERE!
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Office of Public Affairs
Office: (703) 358-2220
Fax: (703) 358-1930
5275 Leesburg Pike
Falls Church, VA
22041-3803
Contact HERE!

https://worldanimalnews.com/one-of-our-least-favorite-members-of-the-u-s-government-secretary-zinke-expands-hunting-fishing-at-30-national-wildlife-refuges-in-the-united-states/

© Copyright 2018 – WorldAnimalNews.com

Petition: STOP the construction of a Chinese dam that will flood a primate sanctuary!

by: Talya Honor
recipient: World Bank and the Government of Guinea

139,228 SUPPORTERS – 140,000 GOAL

Last year the World Bank created a 6,426 s/km sanctuary for chimpanzees in Guinea that protected over 4,000 chimpanzees, and now China wants to build a dam inside the park that could flood it and kill thousands of the chimps.

The Guardian reports: “The nature reserve was intended as a “chimpanzee offset” and funded by two mining companies in return for permission to open mineral excavation sites inside other territory of the critically endangered primate.

After an 80% decline in the past 20 years, western chimpanzees are considered critically endangered – the highest level of risk – by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

The planned Koukoutamba dam would flood an area twice that of San Francisco within the park, forcing the displacement of 8,700 people and causing irreparable damage to species that cannot easily be relocated.

The government [of Guinea] approved plans for China’s Sinohydro to build the dam inside the park, which could wipe out up to 1,500 western chimpanzees. The World Bank funded the feasibility study for the dam and an environmental impact assessment that predicted only 200-300 chimpanzees were likely to be affected. But Kormos, who helped to conduct Guinea’s first nationwide survey of western chimpanzee numbers, believes this underestimates the population and fails to account for the deadly territorial conflicts that would ensue if the primates are driven into surrounding areas.”

Please sign this petition to demand the Government of Guinea stop the construction of this dam that will devastate chimp habitat.

more
Update #517 days ago
Over 100,000 signatures!!! i have forwarded the petition and all it’s signatures to the World Bank and I hope to update you all with a success soon!
Full Update
Update #418 days ago
Unbelievable!!!! Less than 3,000 signatures needed and then I’ll be emailing the World Bank!
Update #323 days ago
We only need 15,000 more signatures! Please keep sharing! We’re almost there!
Update #226 days ago
Just 30,000 signatures needed! Please share on Facebook and Twitter!
Update #129 days ago
We’re just below the halfway mark!! When we hit 100,000 I can send the petition to the World Bank to stop the dam. Please share on Facebook and Twitter! Every signature will help! Talya
Full Update

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/146/723/259/stop-the-construction-of-a-chinese-dam-that-will-flood-a-primate-sanctuary_

Petition: Protect Our Prairie Dogs Before They Are Gone

by: G Brocone
recipient: City of Lafayette, Colorado

111,677 SUPPORTERS – 120,000 GOAL

On July 18th, a colony of prairie dogs on city land in Lafayette, CO came under threat when a city-contracted company laid out traps for their capture and extermination. Public outcry—over the removal as well as the fact that trapped animals were left to suffer in extreme heat for hours—created enough pressure to stop the trapping, and those prairie dogs who had been captured were released. But their fate is not yet decided.

City council and city staff will decide the colony’s fate on September 4th. At this time, we do not know if the city will continue with the extermination. We believe better solutions are available and are looking to demonstrate continued public support for this colony as well as other colonies in peril.

Great horned owls, foxes, coyotes, red-tailed hawks and falcons have been known to hunt in this field. Mountain plovers, whose decline has been linked to the decline of prairie dogs, hatch their young there each year. Native wildflowers bloom here. With the importance of prairie dogs to the ecosystem and their shrinking numbers, we need to make an effort to preserve every colony we can.

We are asking the City of Lafayette for the following:

Allow this colony to remain on this land.
Increase protection for all prairie dogs in Lafayette, whether on public, city-owned or private land.
The formation of a working group of concerned citizens and advocates that can work with the city to make sure humane best practices are followed and all potential options for prairie dogs in danger are examined.
A more thorough and protective prairie dog management policy.

We have been getting support from the Prairie Dog Coalition of the Humane Society of the United States and Prairie Protection Colorado. We already have the support of one city council member. Please help us convince the rest of city council and city staff that this keystone species is worth fighting for!
more
Update #3yesterday
The Water Tank Colony is out of danger for now! The city is listening to our demand for increased protection for prairie dogs and prairie ecosystems. Thank you for your support, 107,000 signatures in 8 days and still counting! Supporters speak of the importance of prairie dogs in the ecosystem, their support of predators, their complex language, the need for diverse gene pools, wildlife corridors and their love for the animals of course 🙂 We aren’t done yet, please continue to support us!
Full Update
Update #23 days ago
The city will receive your signatures in just a few hours. The compassion and caring for you have shown for the prairie dogs has been incredibly meaningful. We will know that all of you are standing behind us as we present the petition at city council tonight. Thank you, everyone, for your generous support!
Full Update
Update #18 days ago
Overwhelmed by your show of support, thank you so much! If you live nearby, please join us September 4th when we will deliver the petition and fight in person for the prairie dogs. At 5:30, the city will conduct a workshop regarding prairie dogs, public can be there, but will not be able to comment. At 6:30, there is open public comment – that is when we will deliver your comments and signatures. Again, thank you for your support! (Lafayette City Hall, 1290 S. Public Rd., Lafayette, CO 80026)

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/764/215/171/protect-our-prairie-dogs-before-they-are-gone-signatures-needed-by-september-4th/

 

Petition · Stop the Government’s Brutal Treatment of America’s Wild Horses · Change.org

change.org
Petition · Stop the Government’s Brutal Treatment of America’s Wild Horses · Change.org
American Wild Horse Campaign started this petition to President of the United States and 5 others
2 minutes

In Wyoming’s Red Desert, a tiny wild horse foal flees a menacing helicopter chasing him. The little colt tries as hard as he can to catch up to his mother, just yards ahead of him. But finally he stops, unable to go farther. His mother turns around to look for her foal, then bravely defies the helicopter to run back to him. When the wranglers come after her on horseback with ropes, she charges them, trying desperately to save her baby. Finally, they rope her and drag her in to the trap, then bring in her exhausted foal. The foal photographed later in a holding pen lying lifelessly on the ground. By the next morning, he’s dead.

This tiny colt is the third foal run to death in the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) roundup underway right now in Wyoming. So far, over 1,000 wild horses have been captured and permanently removed from our public lands. They will never know freedom or see their families again.

Most Americans have no clue what’s happening at the hands of our government and paid for by our tax dollars. Worst of all, it’s totally unnecessary. The Red Desert wild horses being rounded up today aren’t starving or overpopulating… they are in extremely healthy condition, some are even fat!

The sad truth is that these iconic American mustangs are being run off our public lands to make room commercial livestock grazing that is subsidized by our tax dollars, even though it provides less than 2 percent of America’s beef supply. There’s a way to manage our wild horses and burros of the American West and this is not it. Please speak up today.

https://www.change.org/p/stop-the-government-s-brutal-treatment-of-america-s-wild-horses

Here’s Why This Mama Merganser Has More Than 50 Ducklings

audubon.org
By Jillian Mock

Update, July 17: Brent Cizek, the photographer of the above image, says he has since spotted the mother with another two dozen ducklings, bringing her total up to 76.

Choppy waves bounced Brent Cizek’s small plastic boat as he headed for the shore of Lake Bemidji in Minnesota, hoping to beat a fast approaching summer storm. An amateur wildlife photographer, Cizek had decided to brave the late-afternoon winds to scope out the lakeshore for future shoots. He’d only brought one lens, thinking he might get a shot of a mallard he’d seen the day before, but wasn’t expecting to photograph anything special.

Then, as he motored toward the boat slip, Cizek saw something remarkable: a female Common Merganser surrounded by more than 50 little ducklings. While Cizek watched, the little mergansers formed a long, orderly line behind their mom and began swimming away. The scene was too good to pass up.

“I probably shot 50 pictures, and I was just praying that one was going to turn out sharp because the waves were so strong it was nearly impossible to even keep them in the frame,” Cizek says. To further complicate things, he had to alternate between maneuvering his little trolling motor and quickly snapping pictures. “Luckily enough, just one picture turned out.”

Cizek says he has been photographing wildlife in his spare time for about two years and only recently became interested in birds. Last year, he saw a Common Goldeneye with 20 ducklings in tow and thought that was extraordinary. He had no idea ducks could care for so many ducklings—much less 50.

While 50 is definitely on the high end, such big brood counts are actually pretty common, says Kenn Kaufman, field editor for Audubon. This is at least partly because ducks often lay their eggs in the nests of other ducks. In fact, Kaufman says a female duck will have a nest of her own and also make her way over to another nest or two to drop off a few eggs.
While 50 is definitely on the high end, such big brood counts are actually pretty common.

Most of the time ducks will lay their eggs in the nests of other ducks of the same species, but occasionally they are known to lay their eggs in the nests of other duck species. Redheads will even lay their eggs in bittern nests, says Kaufman.

Scientists aren’t sure exactly why ducks do this, but it could effectively serve as a reproductive insurance policy. If a raccoon invades a merganser nest and destroys all the eggs, the female still has more offspring being safely incubated in other nests. “One possibility would be, in a sense, not putting all their eggs in one basket,” Kaufman says.

This behavior doesn’t completely explain Cizek’s photograph, though, because there is a limit to how many eggs one duck can successfully incubate. Female ducks lay about a dozen eggs and can incubate as many as 20, says Kaufman. More than that, and the birds can’t keep all the eggs warm.

The merganser in this picture probably picked up several dozen ducklings that got separated from their mothers. Adult ducks can’t tell which birds are theirs, and lost young birds that have already imprinted on their own mothers will instinctively start following another Common Merganser because she looks like mom.

Since posting his picture online, Cizek says he’s been able to keep tracking the birds virtually, as other people in Bemidji, Minnesota, report seeing the giant brood make its way around town. This mother duck will tend to her ducklings for a couple more weeks, until the little birds are big enough to defend themselves. At that point, they will leave the group, and if they are females, one day potentially end up adopting a few dozens ducklings of their own.

https://www.audubon.org/news/heres-why-mama-merganser-has-more-50-ducklings?ms=digital-eng-email-ea-x-20180831_mersanger76ducklings_engagement_medium&utm_source=ea&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20180831_mersanger76ducklings_engagement&utm_content=medium

Famous Mountain Lion Who Crossed L.A. Freeway 2 Times Found Dead

307198-1513805497-wide

It was happy news just 15 months ago when mountain lion P-55 was discovered in the Santa Monica Mountains. The two-year-old, along with another male (P-56), who may have been his brother, appeared to be thriving.

But as I wrote in May 2017, the chances that those two would live long, healthy lives were not great. Mountain lions in the Santa Monica Mountains are facing challenges that could lead to their extinction within 50 years.

One of those challenges is traveling beyond their limited habitat. To do so, they must make it safely across busy, eight-lane Los Angeles freeways. Since 2002, 17 mountain lions have died trying to make these crossings, including P-39, who left behind three orphaned kittens in December 2016.

Within a couple months of her death, two of her kittens were also struck and killed by cars on the same stretch of the 118 freeway.

P-55, however, had much better luck. He gained fame last summer by becoming only the fourth mountain lion to safely cross the 101 freeway during the 15 years they’ve been tracked by the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (SMMNRA), a unit of the National Park Service (NPS). And he was the only known lion to do this not just once, but twice.

“The overwhelming pattern we’ve observed through GPS tracking is lions coming up to the edge of a freeway and turning around,” Dr. Seth Riley, a wildlife ecologist with the NPS, said at the time. P-55 “actually headed north and then came back to south of the freeway again!” according to a SMMNRA tweet.

Shortly before P-55 crossed the freeway last August, a home’s security camera caught him nearly falling into a backyard hot tub after his paw broke through the cover.
Be an informed activist.

In photos a homeowner took in February, P-55 can be seen peering through a sliding glass door at a dog. (No pets or people were harmed during P-55′s sojourns into these neighborhoods adjacent to his habitat.)

“It was a beautiful animal for sure, but it threatened my family.”

Mountain lion encounter renews debate about proper wildlife management in the Santa Monica Mountains. https://t.co/v5I21CKmZa pic.twitter.com/l4vqdzpIkN

— Thousand Oaks Acorn (@TOAcornNews) February 9, 2018

Sadly, concerns about P-55 being able to live a long life proved to be justified. His remains were recently found in the Santa Monica Mountains — but it wasn’t a vehicle that killed him.

“Possible causes of death to this seemingly healthy animal include rodenticide poisoning or perhaps a fight with another male, although there were no signs of a struggle,” SMMNRA spokeswoman Kate Kuykendall said in a statement.

Because young male mountain lions like P-55 can’t easily leave and find new territories, they remain where there already are dominant males, which results in fatal fights. For this reason, although the average lifespan for wild mountain lions is up to 10 years, it’s rare for males in the Santa Monica Mountains to live past the age of two.

The ingestion of rat poison is yet another major cause of mountain lion deaths in the Santa Monica Mountains and surrounding areas. Rodenticides make their way up the food chain when predators eat poisoned rats and other animals. During 20 years of research, the NPS found that the vast majority of mountain lions in the area – 92 percent of them – have been exposed to at least one of the anti-coagulant compounds found in rodenticides.

We’ll never know what killed P-55. His tracking collar failed to send a “mortality signal” to wildlife officials, and because his body was so decomposed when a biologist found him, it would be impossible to perform a necropsy.

The sad fact is that P-55, like so many other mountain lions that make their homes in the Santa Monica Mountains, died of unnatural causes.
Take Action: Build That Bridge!

Petition: Mountain Lions Need Safe Place to Cross, Los Angeles, CA

It’s too late for P-55, but a planned wildlife corridor will help save the lives of mountain lions and other wild animals crossing the busy 101 freeway. The $60 million, 165-foot-wide, vegetated bridge in Agoura Hills will be mostly paid for with donations.

To help raise those funds, the National Wildlife Federation has joined with other advocacy groups in what the Los Angeles Times called “one of the most ambitious fundraising campaigns ever held on behalf of local wildlife.”

According to the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), the earliest the corridor could be completed is in 2022. But as the death of P-55 shows, wildlife is in dire need of that bridge to give them access to other territories.

 

https://www.care2.com/causes/famous-mountain-lion-who-crossed-l-a-freeway-twice-found-dead.html

Photo credit: National Park Service

A brown bear who waves at people

Fawn Saved From The Devastating Carr Wildfire In Northern California By San Francisco CHP Sergeant Fawson – World Animal News

By WAN

July 30, 2018

Photos from CHP
While working on an update on the devastating wildfire in Northern California that is currently threatening people and animals in Redding and surrounding areas, WAN came across a special story of survival.
As per posts on numerous California Highway Patrol Facebook pages, on Saturday, July 28th, San Francisco Sergeant Fawson responded to a call about a young deer who was alone, stranded, and in need of being rescued from the 80,000 acre fire.
“SF Area CHP units have been deployed to the #CARRfires in Redding, CA. This baby deer was pulled from fire danger and was turned over to a deer rescue organization, shared the Facebook post. “God speed CAL FIRE and all other fire and first responder agencies providing mutual aid. You are truly the Bravest.”

Redding CHP explained on its Facebook page that the fawn was so close to the fire that they could not wait for her mother to return.

While the deer rescue organization has not been identified yet, it did send the department some pictures of the rescued fawn now named Carra, and assurred them that she is “doing well and drank a lot of water and took quickly to the bottle.”

Tragically, the Carr fire claimed numerous lives so far including two young children and their great-grandmother. It is unfathomable how many animals have also already fallen victim to the flames.
WAN is praying for everyone who has been affected by the wildfires and hopes that no more lives are lost as a result of the tragedy.
WAN will continue to provide updates as they come.

https://worldanimalnews.com/fawn-saved-from-the-devastating-carr-wildfire-in-northern-california-by-san-francisco-chp-officer/

© Copyright 2018 – WorldAnimalNews.com

Breaking! The Big Cat Public Safety Act Is Re-Introduced To U.S. Senate; Bill Prohibits Private Individuals, Breeders & Questionable Exhibitors From Possessing Big Cats – World Animal News

Breaking! The Big Cat Public Safety Act Is Re-Introduced To U.S. Senate; Bill Prohibits Private Individuals, Breeders & Questionable Exhibitors From Possessing Big Cats
By Lauren Lewis –
June 7, 2018

A federal bill that aims to end the private possession of big cats such as tigers, lions, leopards, and pumas as pets, as well as to stop cub petting and limit exhibitors to those who do not repeatedly violate the law, has been re-introduced in the United States Senate.
Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut supported the re-introduction of the latest version of the Big Cat Public Safety Act HR1818, which was originally introduced to the House in March 2017 by Rep. Jeff Denham.
Recent national headlines have documented public outrage at the inhumane display of a tiger at a high school prom in Miami, Florida, alarm as federal agents discovered a tiger cub in a duffel bag at the U.S. Mexico border, and confusion when a young tiger was spotted roaming a Texas neighborhood.
Such examples underscore the public’s growing concern about the treatment of big cats­­ and the sponsors of the Big Cat Public Safety Act have made it clear that they are listening.
By reintroducing the BCPSA, senators from six states across the nation are joining more than 130 bipartisan members of the House of Representatives in calling for an end to the unregulated trade and nationwide abuse of captive big cats.
“This common-sense bill is an urgently needed answer to the problem of big cats kept in unsafe and abusive situations around the country,” Prashant Khetan, CEO and general counsel of Born Free USA, one of the numerous animal welfare organizations that are supporting this bill, said in a statement. “Thousands of big cats are currently owned as pets or maintained in ill-equipped roadside zoos and menageries, which pose a severe risk to the safety of people in surrounding communities, as well as the welfare of the cats themselves. It’s about time that we had a federal law that can serve to stop this inhumane practice around the country.”
The bill, if enacted, would keep dangerous big cats out of the hands of private individuals, breeders and exhibitors with egregious, ongoing Animal Welfare Act citations, and unscrupulous menageries that have historically taken advantage of loopholes to circumvent existing restrictions. The BCPSA would close these loopholes while providing exemptions for qualified wildlife sanctuaries and exhibitors licensed by the US Department of Agriculture that meet basic standards intended to protect the public and animals.
“Relying on accredited sanctuaries to take in unwanted and usually neglected big cats is not a viable solution to the big cat crisis in this country,” said Carole Baskin, founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue. “When big cats are wrongly kept as pets or cruelly exploited in entertainment businesses, they often endure tremendous suffering for years in deplorable conditions with inadequate nutrition, and little, if any, veterinary care. Then, when the owners no longer want the cats or they are seized by the authorities, the substantial financial burden to house, feed, and provide long-term vet care for these big cats falls upon sanctuaries. The Big Cat Public Safety Act will finally address the inhumane treatment of the vast majority of big cats in America.”
Baskin noted that it costs Big Cat Rescue $10,000.00 per year for food and vet care for one tiger.

https://worldanimalnews.com/breaking-the-big-cat-public-safety-act-is-re-introduced-to-u-s-senate-bill-prohibits-private-individuals-breeders-questionable-exhibitors-from-possessing-big-cats/

© Copyright 2018 – WorldAnimalNews.com

Petition: Thousands of Adorable Prairie Dogs Will Soon Be Poisoned

by: Care2 Team
target: U.S. Forest Service (USFS)

12,753 SUPPORTERS – 13,000 GOAL
They’re tiny, they’re adorable — and pretty soon, thousands of them will be dead.

The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) recently announced a plan to poison 100 colonies of black-tailed prairie dogs in North Dakota, potentially killing thousands of these little critters — unless we act fast.

Though prairie dogs have called the area home for centuries, cattle ranchers have blamed them for eating up the grass their cattle rely on and have successfully fought to remove them. The truth is, however, that even though prairie dogs eat grass, they are natural grazers who actually help maintain healthy grasslands to feed more animals.

We must fight back and save these creatures from mass slaughter. Please sign this petition and demand that the USFS drop its plan to poison prairie dogs!

If the cull goes through, these prairie dogs will suffer a slow and painful death. The government plans to use rodenticide, which can take days to kill the little animals as they slowly bleed out. It is a cruel, inhumane, and unnecessary plan.

Don’t let the government’s cruel plan continue. Sign now to put an end to the mass slaughter of prairie dogs now.

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/665/593/043/thousands-of-adorable-prairie-dogs-will-soon-be-poisoned/

 

Copyright © 2018 Care2.com, inc.

America’s Last Woodland Caribou Herd Is Down to Just Three Animals

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ecowatch.com

America’s Last Woodland Caribou Herd Is Down to Just Three Animals on Earth
6-7 minutes

By Jason Bittel

Most people associate reindeer with the North Pole. And it’s true, the animals also known as caribou tend to live in remote, wintry landscapes most Americans will never see. But did you know that caribou once roamed as far south as Minnesota, Michigan, Vermont and New York? And that the Selkirk woodland caribou herd still spends part of each year in Idaho and Washington?

Well, three of them do. Because that is all that remains of the Selkirks. By next week, next month or next year, the Lower 48’s last remaining reindeer could be gone forever, making a sad irony of the animal’s nickname, the “gray ghost.”

Several kinds of caribou inhabit the world’s northern stretches (see “Mapping a Future for Boreal Caribou”), but the ones that spend time in the Pacific Northwest belong to an endangered subspecies commonly known as woodland caribou. This spring, aerial surveys confirmed that only three females remain in the Selkirk herd, named for the mountains that span the border between British Columbia and Washington. There were around 12 individuals in 2016, down from 50 in 2009.

Even if each of the Selkirk trio is pregnant—and there’s no evidence to suggest that this is true—the herd is a whisper away from disappearing forever.

Worse still, just two weeks after the approaching demise of the Selkirk herd became public, researchers announced that another group, known as the South Purcells herd, found a bit to the north in British Columbia, are in similar straits. Aerial counts identified just four individuals (three females and a male), where last year there were 16. “When you get in a situation of such small herds, it’s not unusual to expect a dramatic decline at some point,” said Chris Johnson, a wildlife ecologist at the University of Northern British Columbia.

Sadly, this is not the first time a caribou herd has died out. Over the past decade, Johnson, who lives in the city of Prince George, watched this happen with two other caribou herds practically in his own backyard. “We saw it coming,” he said. “They got smaller, smaller, smaller. And then you go and do a survey, and it’s like, ‘Hey, look at that. They’re gone.'”

A similar fate befell the woodland caribou herd in Alberta’s Banff National Park. The herd dwindled to a point where a single avalanche wiped out its last remaining members in 2009. Poof.

The losses aren’t so surprising, said Candace Batycki, a program director for the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, given what the animals face as they travel across their range. Their fate is the culmination of several ecological threats—deforestation, habitat fragmentation, climate change—occurring across Canada. “Here we have an animal that roams around, uses different habitats, is always on the move, doesn’t really do well with roads, needs old growth forests, and is very, very shy,” she said.

Woodland caribou once enjoyed the protection that dense forestlands provided them from wolves and mountain lions. The subspecies ranges about in much smaller groups than their cousins on the tundra, which roll hundreds of thousands deep on the open plains. This makes snagging a woodland caribou as a snack much more difficult, and the animals’ ability to forage through deep snow dissuades many predators from even bothering with them.

But these days, timber, mining, and oil and gas operations have punched holes in the gray ghosts’ habitat, letting in competitors like moose and deer as well as predators. According to the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, as much as 70 percent of Alberta’s oil sands reserves are found within caribou habitats. In 2014, the Canadian government enacted a species recovery plan that set aside more than five million acres of mountainous caribou habitat. Unfortunately, Johnson said, the valleys below these high mountain escapes are “really chopped up” by logging and residential areas. Protecting large expanses of boreal forest, however, is definitely a step in the right direction, especially since other conservation approaches are falling short.

As the habitat degradation continues, some other strategies have tried to help woodland caribou by actively removing predators from their habitat and by capturing and relocating pregnant females into maternity pens, which provide some safety until the offspring are big and strong enough for the wild. Maternity pens, however, are labor- and resource-intensive affairs—and are not sure bets. The whole catch-and-release process can jack up the animals’ stress levels, which may cause low birth weights. In 2014, just two out of nine calves survived their time in a pen in Revelstoke, Canada. In 2016, that number rose to four out of ten. While those odds may still beat the 20 percent to 25 percent survival rate calves experience in the wild, at least one environmental group said the pens cause more harm than good.

Of course, setting up maternity pens for the Selkirk herd at this point would be like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Sadly, unless the herd is combined with another—an idea that has received a fair amount of talk for years—its three remaining females will be the last woodland caribou to tread below the Canadian border.

But the Selkirks and other lost woodland herds needn’t die out for nothing. Their losses send a message on how to save the rest of their kind, the continent’s remaining 51 woodland caribou herds. Their survival requires intact forests within which to roam, hide, and thrive. The answer, in fact, is quite obvious. Woodland caribou need woodlands.

Reposted with permission from our media associate onEarth.

https://www.ecowatch.com/americas-last-woodland-caribou-2567908795.html?utm_source=EcoWatch+List&utm_campaign=263cdfd6f8-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-263cdfd6f8-86074753

Petition: Stop big game hunting

Big game hunting is the sport of killing animals for fun. People hunt animals in Africa for the thrill or fun but also to keep their heads or take elephant tusks. Is it’s extremely unnecessary and animals are endangered.

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/961/677/531/stop-big-game-hunting/

Heartbreaking News! South African Cinematographer Carlos Carvalho Passes Away Following Tragic Incident With Giraffe – World Animal News

Heartbreaking News! South African Cinematographer Carlos Carvalho Passes Away Following Tragic Incident With Giraffe
By Lauren Lewis – May 7, 2018

WAN joins the countless people worldwide who are mourning the passing of award-winning South African cinematographer Carlos Carvalho.
Tragically, Carvalho was attacked by a giraffe while on assignment at the Glen Afric Country Lodge near Pretoria, the capital of South Africa.
“It is with a very sad heart that we have to announce the passing of Carlos Carvalho, one of our favorite DOP’s,” filming company CallaCrew announced on its Facebook page on Thursday, one day after the tragic incident. “Carlos was filming a feature at Glen Afric and had a fatal run-in with a giraffe on set.”
Carvalho had been flown by helicopter to Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg, where he later succumbed to his head injuries.
The 47-year-old filmmaker was reportedly shooting close-ups of Gerald, the giraffe, when the animal was spooked by the boom swinger and swung his neck hitting Carvalho against his head.

“When Carlos was standing in front of the giraffe, the animal spread its legs, bent its neck and swung its head at Carlos,” Richard Brooker, whose family owns the lodge told Netwerk24. He further explained that Gerald will remain at the property. “He did nothing wrong.”
The British television series “Wild at Heart” was filmed at Glen Afric Country Lodge, which on its website shares that tourists can “get up close and personal to a number of our resident wildlife.
This incident raises the question of whether wild animals should be used for the purpose of filmed entertainment.
“Our thoughts and condolences are with Carlos’ family and friends during this very sad time, CallaCrew concluded. “He will be sorely missed.”
R.I.P. Carlos

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http://worldanimalnews.com/heartbreaking-news-south-african-cinematographer-carlos-carvalho-passes-away-following-tragic-incident-with-giraffe/

© Copyright 2016 – WorldAnimalNews.com

Save Yellowstone’s Grizzly Bears from Hunters

Thanks to federal protections, Yellowstone grizzly bears have flourished in the past few decades. Now these protections are gone, and these natural wonders stand at risk once again. Demand Yellowstone states not declare open hunting season on their grizzly populations.

Source: Save Yellowstone’s Grizzly Bears from Hunters

Wildlife Services Killed 1.3 Million Native Animals in 2017, Including Coyotes, Bears, Wolves

ecowatch.com
Wildlife Services Killed 1.3 Million Native Animals in 2017, Including Coyotes, Bears, Wolves
Center for Biological Diversity
3-4 minutes

Coyote at Seedskadee NWR. Tom Koerner / USFWS

The arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture known as Wildlife Services killed more than 1.3 million native animals during 2017, according to new data released by the agency last week.

The multimillion-dollar federal wildlife-killing program targets wolves, coyotes, cougars, birds and other wild animals for destruction—primarily to benefit the agriculture industry. Of the 2.3 million animals killed in total last year, more than 1.3 million were native wildlife species.

“The Department of Agriculture needs to get out of the wildlife-slaughter business,” said Collette Adkins, a biologist and attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “There’s just no scientific basis for continuing to shoot, poison and strangle more than a million animals every year. Even pets and endangered species are being killed by mistake, as collateral damage.”

According to the latest report, the federal program last year killed 357 gray wolves; 69,041 adult coyotes, plus an unknown number of coyote pups in 393 destroyed dens; 624,845 red-winged blackbirds; 552 black bears; 319 mountain lions; 1,001 bobcats; 675 river otters, including 587 killed “unintentionally”; 3,827 foxes, plus an unknown number of fox pups in 128 dens; and 23,646 beavers.

The program also killed 15,933 prairie dogs outright, as well as an unknown number killed in more than 38,452 burrows that were destroyed or fumigated. These figures almost certainly underestimate the actual number of animals killed, as program insiders have revealed that Wildlife Services kills many more animals than it reports.

According to the new data, the wildlife-killing program unintentionally killed nearly 3,000 animals last year, including wolves, badgers, bears, bobcats, foxes, muskrats, otters, porcupines, raccoons and turtles. Its killing of nontarget birds included chickadees, bluebirds, cardinals, ducks, eagles, grouse, hawks, herons, swans and owls. Dozens of domestic animals, including pets and livestock, were also killed. Such data reveals the indiscriminate nature of painful leghold traps, strangulation snares, poisons and other methods used by federal agents.

“The barbaric, outdated tactics Wildlife Services uses to destroy America’s animals need to end,” Adkins added. “Wolves, bears and other carnivores help balance the web of life where they live. Our government needs to end its pointless cycle of violence.

The wildlife-killing program contributed to the decline of gray wolves, Mexican wolves, black-footed ferrets, black-tailed prairie dogs and other imperiled species during the first half of the 1900s and continues to impede their recovery today.

https://www.ecowatch.com/wildlife-services-kills-native-animals-2562879506.html?utm_source=EcoWatch+List&utm_campaign=e12c646d61-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-e12c646d61-86074753

Petition: Ask Trump administration to ban the import of hunting trophies | Four Paws

https://help.four-paws.org/en-US/ask-trump-administration-ban-import-hunting-trophies?refsid=3012255

Stop Hunters From Slaughtering Wildlife With Assault Rifles

Hunters are slaughtering wolves near Denali National Park using assault rifles and other high powered weapons. Without intervention, these wolves will be driven to extinction. Sign this petition to demand stronger hunting restrictions.

Source: Stop Hunters From Slaughtering Wildlife With Assault Rifles

Hear the Otherworldly Screams of Canada Lynx in Battle

Please do not listen with headphones on!!🙃  You’re welcome

Weird & WildVideo
Hear the Otherworldly Screams of Lynx in Battle
Male Canada lynx only have limited opportunity to mate with a female, making their rivalries especially intense.

Two Lynx Cats Scream at Each Other—Can You Stand It? WATCH: Lynx are largely solitary animals, but if two males do meet during mating season, a screaming match can result.
By Jason Bittel

PUBLISHED March 28, 2018

When it comes to courtship in the animal kingdom, frogs peep, crickets chirp, and cicadas click.

But nothing on Earth compares to the ruckus rendered by a male Canada lynx defending his mate.

Amos Wiebe, a photographer in Grande Prairie, Canada, personally experienced this otherworldly racket last week when he stumbled upon a trio of lynx while driving down a remote logging road. (Read about the lynx’s return to Canada.)

These Wild Cats Make the Weirdest Sound
Out of the Shadows, the Wildcats You’ve Never Seen
Which of These Animals is Tougher?

Wiebe was searching for northern pygmy owls to photograph when a flurry of movement caught his eye.

“All of a sudden, I saw a commotion,” he says. “These two lynx were just flying around up in the trees.”

Wiebe managed to park his truck and wade through deep snow to capture the wildcats’ effortless acrobatics on video.

“I’ve never seen a lynx do that. It’s like it was just suctioned to the tree,” says Wiebe. “They just climb up like it’s nothing.”
A Lynx Love Triangle

It may look like a fit of screaming cat chaos, but according to Shannon Crowley, a wildlife ecologist at the John Prince Research Forest in British Columbia, the scene provides a rare glimpse into the predators’ breeding behavior.

Based on the cats’ sizes and tufts of facial fur, called ruffs, Crowley says both lynx in the tree are likely males. And while he can’t be sure, the third lynx, which is not shown in the video, is likely female.

“To see that kind of aggression, there must be a female somewhere in the near vicinity,” says Crowley. (See photos of some of our favorite felines.)

New Video Reveals Lynx Mom and Kittens Frolicking in Snow Watch a lynx mother and her kittens scamper and play on a deck in Anchorage, Alaska.

Female lynx are thought to mate with just one male a year, says Crowley, so the bigger—and dominant—male had probably run the other cat up the tree to protect his breeding opportunity.

These battle cries are not the only spooky noises lynx make. During the breeding season, Crowley says he’s heard males following females through the trees while making a short, repetitive moan.
All Banshee, No Bite

Though they put on a fierce show, a fully grown, an adult male Canada lynx usually weighs no more than about 40 pounds, so it’s unlikely Wiebe was ever in any real danger, Crowley notes.

“Even when we would document litters at the den site, the female would generally run off,” he says. Though the little-seen cats are not dangerous to people, it’s important to give lynx—and any wildlife—a healthy distance. (Here are seven cats you never knew existed.)

Still, the photographer says he felt pretty vulnerable standing hip-deep in snow. At one point, Wiebe even pulled out a canister of bear spray, lest all that yowling were to attract a mountain lion.

And those unholy vocalizations didn’t help either.

“It certainly is an eerie sound to hear in the forest,” says Crowley.

https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/03/animals-lynx-mating-fighting-conflict/

Jason Bittel is a natural history writer and frequent contributor to National Geographic.
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