The Big Game killing field: Sickening bloodlust of trophy hunters who kill endangered animals for sport exposed – Mirror Online

Philip Glass shows No Remorse and even boast. “God says we have dominan over the animals.” That means we can do what we choose with them.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/big-game-killing-field-sickening-11534618#ICID=sharebar_twitter

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President Trump Holds Off on Allowing Reversal of Wildlife Rule For Trophy Hunting… | The Last Refuge


https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2017/11/17/president-trump-holds-off-on-allowing-reversal-of-wildlife-rule-for-trophy-hunting/#comments

Lawsuit: Louisiana Black Bear’s Delisting as Endangered was Premature | Global Justice Ecology Project

Lawsuit: Louisiana Black Bear’s Delisting as Endangered was Premature

Posted on November 7, 2017 by GJEP staff

Washington, DC — Survival of the Louisiana black bear requires that it regain protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, according to a notice of intent to file suit released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). The filing contends that the 2016 delisting of the Louisiana black bear was extremely premature, based on false premises, and flew in the face of a wealth of the best available science – the standard that is supposed to govern Endangered Species Act (ESA) decisions.
The bear was listed as threatened under the ESA back in 1992, but the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) declared it recovered last year and removed that designation. This decision came despite the fact that the Louisiana black bear has lost 99% of its historic population (with only an estimated 700 bears remaining in the wild) and more than 97% of its historic range.

The PEER notice is co-signed by the Atchafalaya Basinkeeper, the Delta (Louisiana) Chapter of the Sierra Club, the Louisiana Crawfish Producers Association-West, as well as by three eminent Louisiana black bear experts. It argues that the recovery plan relied upon by FWS in its delisting decision actually puts the bear in greater jeopardy, by –

Opening the subspecies up to hybridization with black bears introduced from Minnesota;
Increasing its mortality from vehicle collisions and poaching, the two leading causes of deaths; and
Ignoring habitat loss, especially climate change-induced inundation of bayou swamps, while identifying “recovery corridors” that are not even connecting.

“Delisting the Louisiana black bear was a badly misguided attempt to pull an Endangered Species Act success story out of the hat,” stated PEER Senior Counsel Paula Dinerstein, noting that if the FWS does not re-list the bear within 60 days, then PEER and its co-signers may sue FWS to force that action. “We do not believe stripping the Louisiana black bear of all federal protections withstands judicial scrutiny.”

The Louisiana black bear is one of 16 subspecies of the American black bear. Noted for its narrower and flatter skull, adult males can weigh more than 600 pounds. President Theodore Roosevelt once famously refused to shoot a treed Louisiana black bear because it would not be sporting. The incident went viral (in an early 20th century fashion) with the print press dubbing it “Teddy’s bear” – thus popularizing a stuffed animal bearing that moniker.

The notice also points out that even if the population levels relied upon in the delisting are taken at face value, the population densities are well below normal for well-managed black bear populations.

“Unlike its treed ancestor that received a reprieve, today’s Louisiana black bear is in imminent and deepening peril,” added Dinerstein. “We fear the Louisiana black bear, as a distinct subspecies, will not survive its so-called recovery.”
Category: Climate Justice, Featured, Social Media News Tags: black bear, Louisiana, peer

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November 3rd is National Bison Day! – Defenders of Wildlife Blog

  

03 November 2017

It’s National Bison Day!
Posted by: Caitlin Cattelino

National Bison Day has been observed annually on the first Saturday in November since 2012. In 2016, President Barack Obama signed the National Bison Legacy Act, making the North American bison the national mammal of the United States.

The American bison has a long and varied history in the United States. About 150 years ago, millions of bison roamed the Great Plains until a mass slaughter began in the early 1800s. By the late 1880s, fewer than 1,000 bison remained. However, wild bison are making a comeback throughout the West, thanks to the work of Native American tribes, government agencies and conservation groups such as Defenders of Wildlife.

Bison, a keystone species, help create habitat on the Great Plains for a number of different wildlife species, including grassland birds and even many plant species. As bison forage, they aerate the soil with their hooves, which aids in plant growth, and disperse native seeds, helping to maintain a healthy and balanced ecosystem.

Northern Colorado is one location that added wild bison to the landscape, joining other grassland species like prairie dogs and endangered black-footed ferrets. In November 2015, 10 bison, descendants of wild Yellowstone National Park bison, were reintroduced to Soapstone Prairie Natural Area, a city-owned property just north of Fort Collins, Colorado. Earlier that year, in June 2015, Defenders of Wildlife volunteers joined the City of Fort Collins and Larimer County to help ready the range for the bison’s return by pulling up old fence posts and removing dangerous barbed-wire fencing that once crisscrossed a section of Soapstone prairie. 

By August 2017, nearly two years after the reintroduction, the Laramie Foothills Bison Conservation Herd tripled in size and were in need of more space. Again, Defenders of Wildlife volunteers teamed up with volunteers from the City of Fort Collins to help. Volunteers worked in teams to remove 3 miles of interior barbed-wire fencing, fence posts and debris from an area that will soon become the bison’s expanded range. This newly opened area will give the bison herd, which is now over 35 animals, much more room to roam! 

Over the last decade, the conservation community has contributed significantly to bison conservation, helping to bring back America’s national mammal. While bison are no longer threatened by extinction, substantial work remains to fully restore the species to its ecological and cultural role throughout the Great Plains.
Connective landscapes and wildlife corridors are key to bison recovery. We are engaged in land and natural resource planning efforts with state federal agencies, as well as advocating for better consideration of bison as a species of concern on forest lands. Our partnerships with parks and natural resource agencies as well as with private landowners make a difference with connecting landscapes so bison can access suitable forage for grazing. Defenders’ collaborations with tribes have resulted in sustaining several cultural herds in Colorado, Wyoming, South Dakota and Montana. Defenders and our partners are also paving the way for Yellowstone bison – the first wild herd recovered – to be available for conservation, with animals that can be translocated from the park to supplement other herds.

Caitlin Cattelino, Colorado Outreach Representative
Caitlin works across the state with diverse grassroots organizations and media outlets to increase public support and awareness for wildlife conservation and to mobilize citizen advocates.
Categories: American bison, Bison, bison, Fort Collins, Great Plains, Laramie Foothills Bison Conservation Herd, Wildlife, Yellowstone National Park bison

http://www.defendersblog.org/2017/11/national-bison-day/

A Path Forward for Wolves – Defenders of Wildlife Blog

 http://www.defendersblog.org/2017/10/path-forward-wolves/

Watch “WATCH NOW: Safari Live | National Geographic” on YouTube

Some birds use discarded cigarettes to fumigate their nests


https://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21729739-they-help-keep-parasites-bay-some-birds-use-discarded-cigarettes-fumigate?fsrc=scn/tw/te/bl/ed/somebirdsusediscardedcigarettestofumigatetheirnests

Rare White Giraffes Spotted in Kenya, Captured on Camera for First Time

 

Lorranie Chow
Sep. 14, 2017 12:27PM EST
http://www.youtube.com
Rare White Giraffes Spotted in Kenya, Captured on Camera for First Time

Two white reticulated giraffes, a mother and her calf, were captured on camera at the Ishaqbini Hirola Conservacy in Kenya.

Their creamy coloring is due to a genetic condition called leucism, in which there is partial loss of pigmentation in an animal’s skin, hair, feathers, scales or cuticle, but not the eyes.

The Hirola Conservation Programme, an NGO which manages the area, wrote in a blog post that the giraffes were first spotted by a local villager.

“They were so close and extremely calm and seemed not disturbed by our presence,” the post states. “‘The mother kept pacing back and forth a few yards in front of us while signalling the baby giraffe to hide behind the bushes.”

According to the post, the only two known sightings of white giraffes have been made in Kenya and Tanzania: “The very first reports of a white giraffe in the wild was reported in January 2016 in Tarangire National park, Tanzania; a second sighting was again reported in March 2016 in Ishaqbini conservancy, Garissa county, Kenya.”

Reports say this is the first time these animals have been filmed on camera. The conservancy first shared video on YouTube last month, but the clip is now going viral. YouTube commenters have expressed concern that sharing the animals’ location could attract potential poachers.

It is unknown how many white giraffes roam the Earth, but Africa’s giraffe population as a whole has plunged almost 40 percent in the past 30 years and now stands at just more than 97,000 individuals due to habitat loss, hunting for meat and the international trade in bone carvings and trophies.

https://www.ecowatch.com/white-giraffes-kenya-2485263703.html?utm_source=EcoWatch%2BList&utm_campaign=c8503e37c0-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-c8503e37c0-86074753

The War on the Wild: Alaska at the Forefront – Defenders of Wildlife Blog

The War on the Wild: Alaska at the Forefront
21 September 2017

Posted by: Mary Price | 

The administration’s war on the wild zeroes in on Alaska

There has been a steady drumbeat from the Trump administration and many like-minded members of Congress who are pushing to wring every last available resource out of America’s wildest frontier – Alaska.

This fervent pursuit of profits above all else on our public lands and waters has put our wildlife and wild places at greater risk than ever before. It is clear this administration has little regard for the health and future of wildlife and our natural heritage, and Alaska has become a favorite target in its war on the wild.
Selling Out Alaska

Just this past week, The Washington Post revealed that the Trump administration is secretly pushing oil and gas exploration in the Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge—the crown jewel of the National Wildlife Refuge System. The contentious battle to open the refuge to drilling has been raging for decades, but has gained renewed momentum from an administration eager to profit from every last drop of oil they can bleed from our public lands and waters. In this case, the Trump administration is even willing to illegally alter regulations that have prohibited oil and gas exploration in the refuge for more than 30 years.

The Coastal Plain is the biological heart of the Arctic Refuge, home to some of America’s most iconic and imperiled species, including polar bears, caribou, and hundreds of migratory bird species that migrate from all 50 states and six continents. Drilling could forever destroy this delicate ecosystem. While full-blown oil development on the Coastal Plain still requires an act of Congress, the Trump administration’s effort to allow harmful exploratory activities in this wildlife haven is the first step to drilling. And Congress could get in on the action: the House FY2018 budget resolution currently under consideration is an opportunity for the legislative branch to authorize oil and gas drilling in the Arctic Refuge.

The Trump administration’s unprecedented move against the Arctic Refuge should come as no surprise given the president’s directives targeting Alaska last spring. Specifically, the “America First Offshore Energy Strategy” would rewrite the country’s five-year development plan that guides the lease sales for oil and gas development in federal waters offshore. The current plan excludes lease sales in the Arctic, Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Trump’s executive order would put those “off-limits” areas back on the auction block. In addition, it seeks to fast-track harmful seismic testing and roll back safeguards for marine wildlife like dolphins, porpoises, whales and other creatures who can suffer devastating impacts from seismic testing.
Rescinding the Alaska National Wildlife Refuges Rule

Just months into the new administration, Congress and the president revoked the Obama-era Alaska National Wildlife Refuges Rule that prohibited extreme hunting practices on refuges in Alaska. The elimination of the regulation could allow the state of Alaska to pursue its unscientific predator control policy on these federal public lands that sanctions killing mother bears with cubs, killing wolves with pups during denning season, and baiting, snaring and scouting bears from the air for hunting.

Now Congress is taking aim at similar protections on National Park Service preserves in the state. The Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act, deceitfully dubbed the SHARE Act, is anything but generous to wildlife, as it threatens to allow the same objectionable practices on Alaska’s national preserves. Through the SHARE Act, the House is doubling down on this attack since, as part of the FY2018 Interior Appropriations bill, it passed a separate measure that does the same thing.
Clearcutting “America’s Rainforest”

Alaska is home to our nation’s largest national forest and the largest intact temperate rainforest in the world. The vast Tongass National Forest spans 17 million acres and contains the largest remnants of intact old-growth forest habitat in North America. Sadly, it is still logged on an industrial scale – in fact, it is the last forest in the country where old-growth clearcutting is allowed.

In 2016, the U.S. Forest Service made plans to transition away from this outdated practice, but the new administration is putting that progress in reverse.

Now the Forest Service, operating under the Trump administration, is proposing to log an estimated 200-million board feet of old-growth forest on the Tongass over the next decade, in what would be the largest sell-off of old-growth forest the U.S. has experienced in decades. This colossal forest liquidation would destroy thousands of acres of high-quality wildlife habitat, threaten the persistence of Alexander Archipelago wolves, Sitka black-tailed deer, and northern goshawks, and potentially spell disaster for countless other species dependent on these unique and irreplaceable old-growth forests.
Bulldozing Wilderness in Izembek

For years, there has been spurious debate over proposals to build a road through wilderness wetlands in Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, bisecting the refuge and destroying essential wildlife habitat. The dispute has now resurfaced with new potency.

The King Cove Road Land Exchange Act, which was recently passed in the House and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources in the Senate, would trade away globally important habitat in the heart of the Izembek Refuge to allow construction of this destructive and unnecessary road.

If enacted, the bill would irreparably damage an internationally recognized conservation area, threaten the survival of imperiled species, like the Steller’s eider, and set a precedent that would undermine our nation’s bedrock environmental laws and jeopardize the integrity of wildlife refuges and wilderness protections on public lands across the country.

The proposed road would cost taxpayers tens of millions of additional dollars to solve a “problem” that the federal government previously addressed with a more effective, less destructive, transportation solution.
Mining for Trouble in Bristol Bay

Every year, tens of millions of wild salmon return to the Bristol Bay, Alaska, where they join an incredible diversity of wildlife ranging from Pacific walrus and beluga whales to brown bears. Despite the incalculable value of these species and the clear, clean water of the bay, or the very tangible value of these resources to the regional recreation and tourism economies, this administration is threatening to jeopardize it all to allow the permitting process to proceed for a Canadian company to open a massive gold and copper mine. This decision overturns a robust, public Obama-era review that declined issuing a permit to the company.

Mining in the bay’s watershed would require massive earthen dam construction, development of a 100-mile road through important salmon habitat, and diversion of nearly 35 billion gallons of water a year from salmon streams and rivers. These activities will expose all manner of species to habitat loss, increased vehicular and vessel traffic in Cook Inlet, which could impact endangered Cook Inlet belugas, and the potential for the mine’s massive earthen wall to collapse that would forever ruin this vital ecosystem.
Tribulations for Teshekpuk Lake

The area around Teshekpuk Lake in Alaska is incredibly important for wildlife – polar bears make their dens there, migratory birds spend their summers along the shoreline and tens of thousands of caribou call it home.

Teshekpuk Lake is located inside the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska (NPRA) – an Indiana-sized expanse covering much of the western Arctic. Despite its name, the NPRA is required to be managed both for conservation of its remarkable wildlife values and oil and gas development. In 2013, after a lengthy robust planning process involving numerous local, regional and national stakeholders, the Bureau of Land Management finalized a management plan that allows oil and gas development on over 11 million acres in the area, but protects the important habitat around Teshekpuk Lake by designating it “unavailable for leasing.”

Unfortunately, this successful resource management plan could be short-lived. In May, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke signed an order requiring a review of the Obama administration’s plan for managing this area, but rather than holding a transparent and public process, and expedite the opening of Teshekpuk Lake up for exploitation by oil and gas interests.
Fighting for “The Last Frontier”

The Trump administration and some in Congress have a keen interest in Alaska, so do we – but for very different reasons. We and most Americans, want to enjoy and preserve Alaska’s wildlife, lands and waters, while current leadership is driven by greed, unfazed by what they could ruin in pursuit of their objectives.

Help us fight back against this administration’s relentless attacks against our wildlife and wild places.
Mary Price, Digital Copywriter
Categories: Alaska, Alaska, Arctic, Arctic, Arctic drilling, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, bears, imperiled wildlife, Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, Public Lands, Trump administration, Wildlife, wolves

http://www.defendersblog.org/2017/09/war-wild-alaska-forefront/

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Nevada’s Wild Horses Are In Danger, And So Are Thousands Of Others | Care2 Causes

Care2 Causes | Nevada’s Wild Horses Are in Danger, and So Are Thousands of Others
By: Alicia Graef
September 18, 2017

Thousands of wild horses are living peacefully on public lands in Nevada right now, completely unaware that the government is coming for them soon. They will be rounded up this fall, and their advocates are raising serious concerns that they will be sent to slaughter, along with thousands of others.
Tragically, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has failed, and continues to fail, to uphold its duties under the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act, which was intended to protect wild horses from “capture, branding, harassment, or death.” It was enacted in 1971, after Congress officially recognized the value of wild horses as “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West.”

Despite that, the agency has continued to remove and warehouse thousands upon thousands of wild horses at the expense of taxpayers – a vast majority of who strongly oppose the agency’s incredibly cruel, wasteful and ongoing mismanagement of these American icons.

Unfortunately, those who are supposed to uphold the letter and spirit of the law are increasingly beholden to special interests, including livestock and extractive industries, that want to see wild horses exterminated from their rightful place on public lands.

Now, under the Trump Administration, the situation for wild horses could get even worse.

Charlotte Roe, a former science attache and environmental policy officer with the State Department noted in a recent op-ed, that in Nevada alone, the BLM intends to round up nearly 1,000 wild horses “to achieve its absurdly low population target of 60 adults and foals, leaving one horse per 10,000 acres. In the huge Antelope Valley and Triple A Complex, the BLM plans to remove over 7,000 mustangs.”

Sadly, Nevada’s wild horses aren’t the only ones being targeted for upcoming roundups, and their lives are all now in danger.

The House Appropriations Committee recently passed the Stewart Amendment as part of the 2018 budget, which would allow the BLM to kill 92,000 healthy wild horses who are currently in holding, in addition to those who are deemed excess on the range. Some lawmakers did step up to stop this, but they were shut down before their own amendments could go to the floor for a full vote.

Although the situation is looking increasingly dire for wild horses, there’s still hope that Congress will act to protect them from further roundups and slaughter. Wild horse advocates have continued to oppose any measures that would allow slaughter, and have continued to advocate for these American icons to be humanely managed on the range.

For more updates and ways to help, check out organizations including the American Wild Horse Campaign, Cloud Foundation, Equine Advocates, Wild Horse Education and Return to Freedom Wild Horse Conservation.

Photo credit: James Marvin Phelps

http://www.care2.com/causes/nevadas-wild-horses-are-in-danger-and-so-are-thousands-of-others.html

Wild Jaguar in Arizona captured on remote sensor camera – Katzenworld

New Video Shows Wild Jaguar in Arizona TUCSON, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity released a new video this week of a wild jaguar currently living in the United States, named “Sombra” by students of the Paolo… More

Source: Wild Jaguar in Arizona captured on remote sensor camera – Katzenworld

U.S. erred in declining protections for remote grizzly bears: judge

http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/environment/~3/Z1m6CrVUzOk/us-usa-grizzlies-idUSKCN1B32NN

August23, 2017 / 6:22 PM / a day ago
SALMON, Idaho (Reuters) – U.S. wildlife managers erred when they declined to list as endangered a small population of grizzly bears in the remote reaches of Idaho and northwest Montana, a federal judge has ruled in what conservationists on Wednesday hailed as a huge victory.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 2014 determined the fewer than 50 grizzlies that roam the Cabinet Mountains and Yaak River drainage in the Northern Rockies were not in danger of extinction and did not warrant re-classifying as endangered or threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act.

The Montana conservation group Alliance for the Wild Rockies sued, arguing the so-called Cabinet-Yaak population of grizzlies would go extinct unless U.S. wildlife managers tightened restrictions on logging, mining and other activities in bear habitat, all safeguards that would come with endangered status.

On Tuesday a federal judge in Missoula, Montana, sided with the conservation group in a ruling that found that the Fish and Wildlife Service had violated U.S. law in determining that the number of outsized, hump-shouldered bears in the Cabinet-Yaak ecosystem could reach a targeted recovery goal of 100 without added protections.

In the ruling, U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen found that the agency had long recognized that population of grizzlies was warranted for listing as an endangered species because of human-caused mortality and other threats.

The Fish and Wildlife Service in 2013 reported Cabinet-Yaak grizzlies were declining at an annual rate of about 0.8 percent per year and that the percentage of bears unlawfully or accidentally killed by humans had tripled by 1999-2012 compared with 1982-1998.

Yet the agency in 2014 reversed course, finding the bears did not need additional safeguards because their population trend had changed to stable from declining.

Christensen ruled that reversal was unlawfully arbitrary and capricious and ordered the Fish and Wildlife Service to rework any proposal that would downgrade the status of the bears.

Alliance head Michael Garrity on Wednesday said the judge’s decision was a victory for the grizzles.

“Now they have a chance at survival,” Garrity said.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service did not respond to a request by Reuters for comment.

Grizzlies in 1975 were listed as threatened in the lower 48 states after they neared extinction.

The Cabinet-Yaak bears are among just a handful of grizzly populations that exist outside Alaska. The grizzlies in and around Yellowstone Park, the second-largest group of bears in the Lower 48 states, were delisted this summer.

Reporting by Laura Zuckerman; Editing by Dan Whitcomb and Sandra Maler
Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

© 2017 Reuters. All Rights Reserved.

Breaking News: The Great Lakes and Wyoming wolves remain federally protected!

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 Correction Update: Threats Mount For Wyoming Wolves 

Dear wolf advocates:

We have fantastic news! This morning the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia agreed the gray wolf in the Great Lakes and Wyoming should remain on the federal Endangered Species List.

Essentially, the federal appeals court has ruled against the Interior Department’s 2011 decision to delist the gray wolf under the Endangered Species Act. The court said, “Because the government failed to reasonably analyze or consider two significant aspects of the rule—the impacts of partial delisting and of historical range loss on the already-listed species—we affirm the judgment of the district court vacating the 2011 Rule.”

This decision re-affirms what we know: the wolf is a vulnerable and valuable species and needs federal protections for their long-term survival. The wolf is an important part of our state and nation’s ecology and culture. We have known all along that wolf hunting recklessly endangers this valuable asset.

Here in Minnesota, we are very pleased with recent funding approved by the state legislature to reimburse farmers for nonlethal methods to deter livestock conflicts.

We are on the right track for recovering the wolf’s genetic diversity that will keep them in existence for future generations in Minnesota and the world. You helped make this happen – let’s keep it going.
Do a dance for the wolf!

#LiveAndLetHowl
-Maureen Hackett, MD, President and Founder, Howling For Wolves

p.s.
Howling For Wolves will stay in close touch with ongoing wolf issues including legal and legislative happenings. We know committees in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate have passed reckless provisions in bills to remove these federal protections and to make delisting decisions not judicially reviewable.
Copyright © 2017 Howling For Wolves, All rights reserved.

Ivory Coast seizes record haul of pangolin scales, 8 men arrested!


http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ivorycoast-wildlife-pangolins-idUSKBN1AD1SA?feedType=RSS&feedName=environmentNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2Fenvironment+%28News+%2F+US+%2F+Environment%29

Petition · LET’S ESTABLISH A SILVER LAKE WILDLIFE SANCTUARY · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/let-s-establish-a-silver-lake-wildlife-sanctuary?source_location=update_footer&algorithm=promoted&grid_position=4&pt=AVBldGl0aW9uACeVqAAAAAAAWPgq2XlFYJY1MmY0MDE5Ng%3D%3D

With Carving Factories and Shops Closing in Preparation for the end of  Ivory Sales,the Price of Tusk in China are Plummeting

Ivory lust wanes in China, elephants rejoice

A mere 35 years ago some 1.2 million majestic elephants in Africa roamed the wide-ranging continent. With the inexplicable taste for ivory responsible for their demise, now fewer than 500,000 remain. Tanzania’s elephant population fell by 60 percent in five years; at this point Central African forest elephants could be extinct within 10.
While poaching has declined a bit as of late, some 20,000 African elephants are still slaughtered for their tusks each year, much in part to meet ivory demand from Asia, particularly China, notes Simon Denyer in The Washington Post.

“Reducing demand from China, the world’s biggest ivory market, is probably the single most important factor that could help end the widespread poaching of elephants in Africa,” writes Denver. And it looks like demand is not just being reduced, but plummeting.

The country is closing 67 ivory carving factories and retail shops this week, accounting for 30 percent of all, in preparation to stop all domestic ivory sales by the end of 2017.

And now a report has been released from the conservation group Save The Elephants, noting that the average wholesale price of tusks in China has fallen from $2,100 per kilogram in early 2014 to $730 this February. “The news is likely to foster hopes for an eventual end to the elephant poaching crisis in Africa,” writes Denver.

It’s easy to question the efficacy of government action given the strength of the black market, especially when it comes to illegal wildlife trade, but remarkably, the new direction seems to be taking hold here.

“These closures prove that China means business in closing down the ivory trade and helping the African elephant,” says Peter Knights, chief executive of WildAid, a non-profit that has been advocating against the ivory trade. Noting that the drop in price indicates that ivory has become “a very bad investment,” he expects further declines throughout the year.

Interestingly, the legal ivory trade in China – which relied on stockpiled goods collected before the global ban – has inadvertently worked to harbor a booming illegal trade that has fueled poaching. But with the government decision to end the trade, demand all around is dropping. The economic slowdown, an official anti-corruption campaign, and growing public awareness have all contributed to the wane as well, explains Knights.

Even before the ban has officially begun, confiscation of illegal ivory flooding into the country has dropped by 80 percent in 2016, and poaching has declined in Kenya, Knights says. Now if Hong Kong, Britain and Japan would only climb aboard the ivory ban bandwagon, the future of the planet’s beautiful regal elephants could become even more secure. But for now, China is a start – and big one at that.

Petition · Don’t make bears and mountain lions pay for human overdevelopment · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/don-t-make-bears-and-mountain-lions-pay-for-human-overdevelopment?source_location=update_footer&algorithm=promoted&grid_position=1&pt=AVBldGl0aW9uACe4lAAAAAAAWNqdbfmkDDIzNmYxZmE0OQ%3D%3D

Petition-Say No to Rhino Horn Trade | African Wildlife Foundation


://secure.awf.org/say-no-to-rhino-horn-trade?utm_campaign=fy17advocacy5&ms=B17V06E03M&utm_source=1703advocacy1adv&utm_medium=email&utm_content=16838658&spMailingID=16838658&spUserID=MTkyNTk0MzkxNzgxS0&spJobID=981801832&spReportId=OTgxODAxODMyS0

Stop the Massacre of Bears and Wolves in Slovenia – ForceChange


https://forcechange.com/196236/stop-the-killing-of-slovenias-bears-and-wolves/

Petition · Vermont Fish & Wildlife Board: Vermont’s otters need your help! · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/vermont-fish-wildlife-board-vermont-s-otters-need-your-help?source_location=petition_footer&algorithm=promoted&grid_position=4&pt=AVBldGl0aW9uADafoQAAAAAAWNb1fJIvoBgzMWQxMDY3Mg%3D%3D

Petition · Brian Yablonski: Stop The 2017 Florida Black Bear Hunt · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/brian-yablonski-stop-the-2017-florida-black-bear-hunt/sign?utm_source=action_alert_sign&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=727058&alert_id=cyGpzWKrgM_y5k7ftSEPPjTVGRjMG%2F%2Be73mxs9Lbaxzi0TklxUVVKE1cLfdo%2BY4NZb2wg86mJKb

Petition-Save Wild Donkeys From Extinction – ForceChange


https://forcechange.com/198328/save-wild-donkeys-from-extinction/

Lead Bullet Ban Overturn Poses Threat To More Bald Eagles


https://www.thedodo.com/bald-eagle-ammunition-refuges-2306402071.html

Watch wild reindeer from this gorgeous observation pavilion in Norway

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Europe’s last remaining wild reindeer herds roam the beautifully stark mountains of Norway – Viewpoint Snøhetta is where to watch them.

While Lloyd and Kimberly usually cover the architecture beat, somehow this lovely structure never made it to the pages of TreeHugger. And seeing as how I have a background in design as well … and I have a country-crush on Norway … and I seem to write about animals every single day … well I thought “shhh, don’t pass this on to the design writers, save it for yourself, because … reindeer.”

Then again, it was built in 2011 so it’s not like it is new news – but that doesn’t keep me from thinking that it’s not still relevant. Because Norway and herds of wild reindeer and mod-organic wildlife observation buildings will never go out of style, in my humble opinion.

Officially known as Viewpoint Snøhetta, the structure is located at Hjerkinn on the edge of Dovrefjell National Park. It was designed by the architecture firm Snøhetta – who took their name from Dovrefjell’s highest peak, Snøhetta – it was commissioned by the Norwegian Wild Reindeer Centre North. (TreeHugger covers a lot of projects by Snøhetta, by the way, like the impressive “energy positive” office building Powerhouse Telemark, the Zero Energy House, and the latest addition to the Treehotel.)

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Reindeer pavilion
© Ketil Jacobsen

I think Viewpoint Snøhetta is just about perfect. Its simplicity of lines – it is a rectangular box, basically, made of raw steel and glass – doesn’t compete with the stark landscape the way that something more ornate would. And in fact, the reflective surface gives the front a constantly changing camouflage skin, of sorts, to blend right in.

Which is important, because it’s a landscape to revere. The Dovrefjell range creates a border between northern and southern Norway – and crucially, it hosts Europe’s last wild reindeer herds, as well as providing habitat for an array of rare plants and animals. Reindeer are listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), thanks to a 40 percent decline in population over the past 21 to 27 years. And while there are still a few million reindeer on the planet, most of them are domesticated, rather than the wild ones that roam the Dovre.

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Reindeer pavilion​
Enra/CC BY 2.0

And on that note, the mountains themselves garner fond esteem. According to Snøhetta, the Dovre mountains hold a “significant importance in the Norwegian consciousness. National legends, myths, poetry (Ibsen) and music (Grieg) celebrate the mystic and eternal qualities of this powerful place.”

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Reindeer pavilion
© Ketil Jacobsen

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Reindeer pavilion
© Ketil Jacobsen

Within the rigid shell, however, it is all warmth; curves and comfort. Visitors must hike for a mile from the parking lot, so naturally it should have an inviting interior. The “bleachers” were made by Norwegian shipbuilders from 10-inch square pine timber beams, which were assembled using wood pegs as fasteners. The result is a part sauna, part driftwood, part Gaudi seating area that mimics the mountains and is likely as good for seating as it is for kids to climb around. The back of the building offers outdoor wooden seating as well. There is also a big Scandinavian fireplace for extra warmth and glow. (I know that wood-burning fireplaces have their problems, but for a seasonal-use, public building like thi

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Reindeer pavilion
© Ketil Jacobsen

And of course, the glazing on the cake: the floor-to-ceiling windows that afford visitors a view of the landscape and wildlife. Because no matter how beautiful the pavilion is, the real star here is Mother Nature and her herds of wild reindeer.

For information on visiting, go to the Norwegian Wild Reindeer Centre site –

(photosTags: Animals | Norway
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Petition: Stop the Slaughter of Horses: Urge Congress to Support the SAFE Act


http://www.thepetitionsite.com/704/199/045/stop-the-slaughter-of-horses-urge-congress-to-support-the-safe-act/

URGENT: Prevent Wildlife From Being Gunned Down in Their Homes!

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Contact your U.S. senators and politely urge them to OPPOSE S.J. Res. 18! This dangerous legislation could be acted on anytime, so your voice is urgently needed today!

Source: URGENT: Prevent Wildlife From Being Gunned Down in Their Homes!

Petition · NSW National Parks & Wildlife: Please help prevent the barbaric slaughter of innocent Brumbies · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/nsw-national-parks-wildlife-please-help-prevent-the-barbaric-slaughter-of-innocent-brumbies?source_location=petition_footer&algorithm=promoted&grid_position=2&pt=AVBldGl0aW9uAFlJcQAAAAAAWL3rNnL4Yq83MGVlYTU2Mw%3D%3D

Petition · U.S. Senate: Stop Hunters from Killing Innocent Bear and Wolf Families! · Change.org


https://www.change.org/p/u-s-senate-stop-hunters-from-killing-innocent-bear-and-wolf-families

Feds kill wolf in Wallowa County on private land with cyanide trap

Exposing the Big Game

http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.ssf/2017/03/feds_kill_wolf_in_wallowa_coun.html

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A male yearling from the Imnaha Pack was one of eight Oregon gray wolves collared in 2013 by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The agency uses signals from wolves’ collars to track their dispersal throughout the state. (Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife photo) (ODFW)

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on March 02, 2017 at 4:36 PM, updated March 02, 2017 at 4:57 PM

A gray wolf was killed on private land in Wallowa County by a controversial cyanide device used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, wildlife officials confirmed Thursday.

The male, 100-pound wolf was a member of the Shamrock Pack in northeast Oregon and believed to be less than 2 years old. Officials had just placed a tracking collar on the animal Feb. 10. The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife and the USDA acknowledged Sunday’s…

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