18-YR-OLD BLIND DACHSHUND WAS DUMPED AT SHELTER, CLINGS TO FIRST PERSON WHO SHOWED HER LOVE

She wagged her tail as her new mom signed the papers to adopt her.

Old, blind and lost at a kill shelter, Muneca didn’t seem like she had much left to hold on to.

Until the first person to show her kindness came along.

And then, the 18-year-old dachshund refused to let go.

Muneca, an 18-year-old blind Dachshund, was dumped at an animal shelter, leaving her alone and terrified. At this time, she no longer had a home, her vision, or someone to love her.

But Muneca’s story didn’t end with a bittersweet moment at what seemed the end of the line. Hwang’s photograph moved thousands to share her plight.

Just two days after being dumped at the shelter, the Frosted Faces Foundation stepped up to get Muneca out of there.

Suddenly, a dog who seemed to have no one had people all over the world lining up to take her home. She found the perfect fit with Amy Gann. Literally.

“We screened a lot of people and talked to all their references,” Kelly Smíšek, executive director of Frosted Faces, tells The Dodo. “We home-checked a bunch of people.

“By the time we approved someone and they drove to San Diego, I met them, I was very nervous. I thought, ‘I hope we picked the right person.’ And immediately, it was, ‘Oh my Gosh. I’m so glad she’s going home with you.'”

It turned out Muneca had a lot more memories to make outside of that shelter. Even before she found her real home. Like when she soaked in a much-needed bath.

Or when she sprawled out on a picnic blanket, chomping on a treat.

“I can’t put her down,” Gann wrote to Smíšek in a text message. “I have very close family and we pass her along like a new baby in the family.”

In fact, Gann even made a sling for Muneca, so she can keep her close to her while doing chores around the house.

Muneca may not be able to see the setting sun on a California beach, but she can surely feel the warmth that will embrace her for the rest of her days.

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From an original story from The Dodo in 2016.

RARE BIRTH OF SUMATRAN RHINO BRINGS HOPE FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES

A Sumatran Rhino has successfully given birth in an Lampung sanctuary, environment officials said, in a boost for conservation efforts targeting the critically endangered animal.

THE CLAF BORN IN WAY KAMBAS NATIONAL PARK

The World Wide Fund for Nature estimates fewer than 80 Sumatran Rhinos remain in the world, mainly in Sumatra and Kalimantan.

A Rhino named Rosa gave birth to a female calf on Thursday in Way Kambas National Park in Lampung, after suffering eight miscarriages since 2005, when she was brought in from the wild for a breeding program.

“The birth of this Sumatran Rhino is such happy news amid the government’s and partners’ efforts to increase the population,” Wiratno, a senior official at Indonesia’s environment ministry, said in a statement Monday. 

The calf, who has yet to be named, brings the number of Sumatran Rhinos in the Way Kambas sanctuary to eight.

Successful births are rare. The calf’s father, named Andatu, was the first Sumatran Rhino born in a sanctuary in more than 120 years.

Standing between 3.3 – 5 feet, Sumatran Rhinos are the smallest of all Rhinoceroses and they have a lifespan of around 35 – 40 years. They were once found across South and Southeast east, from the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas in Bhutan to eastern India, through Myanmar, Thailand, and  possibly to Vietnam and China. Now, the species is critically endangered, with less than 80 individuals remaining in the wild in small fragmented habitats on the island of Sumatra and nearby Borneo.

MOTHER ROSA WITH HER CALF

In 2017, Rhino conservation experts and the Indonesian government concluded that the only way to save the species was through a captive breeding program. The move was similar to an initiative launched in the 1980s that saw 40 Sumatran rhinos captured for breeding. But in this case, nearly half of the captive animals had died by 1995 and not a single calf had been born.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies the Sumatran rhino, the smallest of all Rhino species, as critically endangered.

Multiple threats have brought them to the brink of extinction, including poaching and climate change.

This handout photo released on March 28 and made available on March 29, 2022 shows female rhino named Rosa (l) with her new baby born at the Way Kambas National Park, in Way Kambas, in Lampung province. Rosa delivered a baby rhino on March 24, for the first time after translocating from roaming in villages. A critically endangered Sumatran rhino was born in an Indonesian sanctuary bringing hope to the conservation of the rapidly declining species, an official said. (AFP/Handout)

Rhino horn is often illegally traded for traditional Chinese medicine. 

Indonesia is also racing to save another critically endangered species – the Javan Rhino.

Once numbering in the thousands across Southeast Asia, fewer than 80 are alive today, mainly in a national park on Indonesia’s main island of Java.

Efforts to conserve the species have shown promising results with the birth of five calves in Ujung Kulon National Park last year.

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CHARITY AUCTION TO HELP DISABLED ANIMALS

This is your chance to bid on beautiful original artworks and signed memorabilia in our ‘Charity Auction To Help Disabled Animals’.

This is a sealed bid auction, so all you need to do is decide which item you would like to bid for – noting the reserve price for each – and send us your bid with the lot number and name by email to protectallwildlife@btinternet.com by 21:00 on the 17th of April . We will email you to let you know if your bid is the highest. Postage costs will be calculated when the auction ends. Good luck!

All funds raised help support the Miracle’s Mission Centre for Disabled Animals and their work in the rescue, treatment and rehoming of sick, injured and disabled animals .

Happy bidding and good luck 🐾.

Lot 1

This signed After Life image has been very kindly donated by animal welfare great Ricky Gervais.

Reserve £100

RICKY GERVAIS AFTER LIFE 1

Lot 2

This signed After Life image has been very kindly donated by animal welfare great Ricky Gervais.

Reserve £100

RICKY GERVAIS AFTER LIFE 2

Lot 3

This is an ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Badger by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 54 x 41 cms

Reserve: £100

Lot 4

This is an ORIGINAL pencil study of a Rhino by Dane Youkers . This STUNNING piece measures 28 x 36 cms .

Reserve: £100

RHINO

Lot 5

‘The Animals Fight Back’ original watercolour by Charito Lilley. This thought-provoking piece measures 40 x 30 cms

Reserve: £50

THE ANIMALS FIGHT BACK

Lot 6

‘Tails Erect’ by Wildlife Artist Carol Barrett. This ORIGINAL study of Warthogs is in watercolour and ink and is on Rhino Dung Paper! It is mounted and measures 40 x 30 cms.

Reserve: £200

TAILS ERECT

Lot 7

A ‘Dazzle Of Zebras’ by Jan Ferguson. This stunning print measures 41 x 30 cms

Reserve: £30

A DAZZLE OF ZEBRAS

Lot 8

Limited Edition print titled ‘Highland Monarch’ Michael Demain. This stunning measures 56 x 34 cms.

Reserve: £40

HIGHLAND MONARCH

Lot 9

This is an ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Cheetah by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

CHEETAH

Lot 10

This is an ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Fox by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 58 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

FOX

Lot 11

This is an ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Clouded Leopard by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms

Reserve: £100

CLOUDED LEOPARD

Lot 12

A beautiful print of Tiger cubs by Jan Ferguson. This piece measures 41 x 31 cms.

Reserve: £30

TIGER CUBS

Lot 13

This lot is for an official Scottish Rugby ball signed by the 2021/2022 squad.

Reserve: £75

OFFICIAL SIGNED SCOTTISH RUGBY BALL 2021/2022 SQUAD

Lot 14

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Jaguar by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

JAGUAR

Lot 15

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a pair of baby Snow Leopards by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 59 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

A PAIR OF BABY SNOW LEOPARDS

Lot 16

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Snow Leopard by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 59 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

SNOW LEOPARD

Lot 17

A stunning Limited Edition print titled ‘Endangered Nobility’ by Kim Thompson. This beautiful study of the noble Lion measures 60 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £75

ENDANGERED NOBILITY

Lot 18

‘Mischief Maker’ is a beautiful Ltd Edition study of a Lion cub by Julie Rhodes. It is mounted and measures 560 x 380mm.

Reserve: £50

MISCHIEF MAKER

Lot 19

The beautiful Butterflies In The Round by Cath Hodsman. This Limited Print measures 51 x 41 cms.

Reserve: £50

BUTTERFLIES IN THE ROUND

Lot 20

This lot is ‘A Mother’s Love’, an adorable original watercolour, pastel and pencil of a Lioness and her cubs by wildlife artist Milo. This beautiful piece measures 30 x 28 cms.

Reserve: £75

A MOTHER’S LOVE

Lot 21

Who can resist ‘Those Eyes’? This delightful original watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a baby Orangutan is by Milo and measures 59 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

ORANGUTAN

Lot 22

A custom made digital pet portraits makes a wonderful keepsake or present for your loved ones and are ideal for framing.

Reserve: £25

DIGITAL PET PORTRAIT

Lot 23

Street artist Sonny Sundancer’s gigantic painting of an Amur Leopard overlooked the city of Vladivostok, Russia and is part of his worldwide ‘To The Bone’ project aimed at raising awareness about endangered species.

This STUNNING piece of his work is caught brilliantly in this VERY Limited Edition of only 45 prints and measures 50 x 35 cms.

Reserve: £75

AMUR LEOPARD WALL ART

Lot 24

In a very Limited Edition of only 75 prints, this Stunning study of a Sumatran Tiger is by Nick Day. It measures 38 x 41 cms.

Reserve: £75

SUMATRAN TIGER

Lot 25

A beautiful print of a Giraffe by Jeremy Paul. It measures 46 x 26 cms

Reserve: £10

GIRAFFE

Lot 26

A beautiful print of a Zebra by Jeremy Paul. It measures 46 x 26 cms

Reserve: £10

ZEBRA

Lot 27

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Wolf by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

WOLF

Lot 28

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Sumatran Tiger by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

SUMATRAN TIGER

Lot 29

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Giraffe by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

Lot 30

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of a Giraffe and her baby by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

GIRAFFE AND BABY

Lot 31

This is a stunning ORIGINAL watercolour, pastel and pencil study of an ADORABLE pair of Cheetah cubs by wildlife artist Milo. This STUNNING piece measures 57 x 42 cms.

Reserve: £100

CHEETAH CUBS

Lot 32

This is a stunning Limited Edition print of a commission for The Miracle’s Mission Rehabilitation Centre. This beautiful piece measures 30 x 21 cms.

Reserve: £25

THE MIRACLE’S MISSION REHABILITATION CENTRE

Lot 33

St. Francis of Assisi Charm. From Assisi, Italy

Hand carried back from Assisi, Italy by comedian/rescuer Elayne Boosler. St. Francis of Assisi is known the world over as the Patron Saint of Animals. Elayne had this charm blessed in the church in Assisi, Italy. It can attach to your pet’s collar or you can wear it on a chain yourself.

Made and bought in Italy, hand carried back by Elayne Boosler, blessed in Assisi’s church.

Reserve: £30

ST FRANCIS OF ASSISI CHARM

Lot 34

Fully signed South African Rugby Union Club Sharks top very kindly donated by former Sharks fullback Joe Pieterson

Reserve: £100

FULLY SIGNED SHARKS RUGBY TOP

Lot 35

Roque was just a few months old when he was rescued by Born Free from a Spanish pet shop in 1998. Rehabilitated at a sanctuary in Kent, he then lived happily for 16 years at BFF’s Tiger sanctuary in India until his death in 2018.

Reserve: £35

BORN FREE FOUNDATION ROQUE TEA TOWEL AND STUFFED TIGER

Lot 36

A MAGNIFICENT original piece of art by the respected Scottish artist, Archibald Peddie. Painted in 1957, this oils on board painting measures 64 x 54 inches.

Reserve: £350

A VASE OF FLOWERS OIL PAINTING BY ARCHIBALD PEDDIE

Thank you for taking the time to look at our auction and happy bidding.

If you would like to make a donation to our fundraiser to help support our work you can do so at Fundraiser To Help Disabled Animals. Thank you.

OUTCRY AS NORTH CAROLINA COMMISSION VOTES TO ALLOWS BEAR HUNTING IN SANCTUARIES!

A decades-long ban on bear hunting in parts of North Carolina has been overturned by the state’s wildlife resources commission, in a move that has sparked outcry from local residents and American animal rights groups.

The North Carolina commission voted to allow bear hunting in three bear sanctuaries, encompassing an area of 92,500 acres of mountainous forest in the southern US state. The sanctuaries, established to protect and preserve North Carolina’s black bear population, are set to open to hunters later in 2022, despite thousands of people signing a petition against the move.

A NORTH CAROLINA TROPHY HUNTER ‘RESPECTFULLY’ SITS ASTRIDE A BLACK BEAR

Bear hunting has been banned in North Carolina’s Panthertown-Bonas Defeat, Standing Indian and Pisgah Bear sanctuaries since 1971. The number of black bears in the state has since grown from fewer than 1,000 to about 25,000, according to the wildlife commission.

In a January public hearing, the commission said the US Forest Service, the federal agency that oversees America’s 154 national forests, had requested that hunting be allowed in the three sanctuaries “due to increased human-bear interactions”.

The commission voted in favor of the proposal in late February, in defiance of opponents who say hunting will not reduce human-bear encounters.

“It will definitely not target the actual bears involved in the original complaint of ‘increased bear-human interactions’,” said Bill Lea, a North Carolina-based nature photographer and retired US Forest Service assistant district ranger.

“Instead, the plan will target many of the younger bears who have just started life on their own away from their mothers and who have not yet developed the skills to elude the packs of vicious dogs and hunters. The indiscriminate killing of bears never addresses the problem of individual bear behavior.”

The American black bear is native to North America, where it can be found across Canada and in much of the western and eastern US, including North Carolina, California and New York. The bears, which can weigh up to 660lb (300kg), are omnivores who are normally wary of humans, but can develop a taste for food designed for humans if it is left easily accessible.

A BLACK BEAR WITH HER CUBS

A petition, addressed to the wildlife commission and signed by almost 8,000 people, said it was mostly humans who are to blame for bear encounters.

“We as humans need to address and acknowledge that our actions are changing bear behavior and causing conflicts. Managing our habits, understanding how they impact bears, and adjusting our activities will solve bear-human conflicts, not hunting,” the petition, started by the One Protest advocacy organization, said.

Friends of Panthertown, a non-profit group which protects and maintains parts of the Panthertown-Bonas Defeat bear sanctuary, said 2,744 people had commented on the North Carolina commission’s bear hunting proposal, with 86% of people opposed to the changes.

“Bear hunting has no place in Panthertown,” said Jason Kimenker, executive director of Friends of Panthertown. “This is their natural, wild habitat. These forests are their territory. This is their home. We are the visitors here and we all have a responsibility to continue to protect the bears.”

Friends of Panthertown said human-bear interactions had dropped after it installed “bear-proof food storage vaults”. Local groups say they will continue to lobby against bear hunting, but as it stands hunters will be allowed access to the three huge sanctuaries this fall.

“I don’t think we would be fully human if we did not feel compassion for bears and other animals as individuals,” Brad Stanback, one of the members of the North Carolina wildlife resources commission, told the Asheville Citizen Times.

Mike Pelton, a bear researcher for more than 30 years and professor emeritus at the University of Tennessee Knoxville, said it feels like a rushed decision. 

“As a bear researcher for more than 40 years, I strongly disagree with this proposal. I do not believe it will solve the conflict problems and fear it could have negative long-term consequences for bears in the future.” he said.

Mike Pelton, professor emeritus of the University of Tennessee, taught wildlife science and studied black bears in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for 40 years. 

“The devil’s in the details on this whole issue in regards to more detailed information on what’s going on out there both on the sanctuaries and off the sanctuaries,” he said, mentioning data points such as how many hunters there are, whether they’re using dogs, where the bear kills happen and statistics about the age, sex and condition of those bears.

The commission did not respond to a request for comment. Peta was among the national organizations to criticize the move.

“Peta reminds the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission that bears are not living targets for gun nuts, that they can manage their own populations based on available resources, and that there are always humane solutions for dealing with real or perceived conflicts with wildlife,” the group said in a statement.

Animal protection groups said proper storage of food and scented items was the way to reduce encounters, along with better education about how hikers and visitors can prevent visits from curious bears.

A Black Bear raids a residents trash bin

“North Carolina cannot hunt its way out of human-bear conflicts as an excuse for a trophy,” Kitty Block, president and chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States, said.

“Black bears are slow to reproduce and susceptible to overkill from both legal hunting and poaching. They provide vast benefits to their ecosystems, and destroying them instead of implementing proper solutions, is a disaster.

“If Black Bears are to survive and thrive, we must learn to adapt and share our world with them.”

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STUDENT REFUSED TO LEAVE UKRAINE WITHOUT HIS RESCUE DOG MALIBU. NOW THEY’RE SAFE!

Amid the horrific Russian invasion, many Ukrainians have been able to leave with their furry friends by their sides. But some people are still having trouble getting to safety. Rishabh Kaushik, an Indian student in Ukraine, has been struggling to get his rescue dog named Malibu approved to fly.

#NoAnimalLeftBehind

Rishabh was trying to evacuate to India amid the war, but he refused to leave without Malibu. The government kept denying his flight without the dog’s paperwork. So, he posted a video online, pleading for someone to help him. All he wanted was for his pup to be safe.

Rishabh was studying software engineering at the Kharkiv National University of Radio Electronics Engineering when the war began. He’s in his final year of college, and he adopted Malibu during his time in Ukraine. He named the rescue pup “Malibu” because it means “sweet.”

Rishabh Kaushik with Malibu after arriving in India

Rishabh’s family is from Dehradun, India, so he planned to return there once he realized it wasn’t safe in Ukraine. His family members in Ukraine quickly evacuated the country, but Rishabh couldn’t go with them because of Malibu. He refused to hop on a plane unless his furry friend could be beside him.

The student faced a lot of setbacks when trying to fly back to India. He said the government kept asking for paperwork that he couldn’t obtain because most places in Ukraine were closed. Eventually, he turned to the internet to ask for help. He posted a video sharing his story, hoping someone could find a way for him and Malibu to escape.

“Even my dog is so stressed out about it,” said Rishabh. “He’s really scared about all the bombings happening, and he’s crying all the time with all the bombings happening around.”

After seeing his plea, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) reached out to the Indian government and convinced them to allow pets on flights. With more lenient pet travel restrictions, Rishabh was able to safely fly to India with Malibu by his side.

“There was a lot of documentation in India, the procedure was long. But in war-like situations, they should’ve allowed their own citizens. So, I had put up the appeal. A memorandum had come recently which stated that pets and even strays are now being allowed without NOC,” Rishabh said.

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#NoAnimalsLeftBehind

EVIL CRIMINALS ARE TARGETING BADGER SETTS WHEN THE MOTHERS ARE PROTECTING LITTERS OF TINY CUBS

Badger setts have been targeted by cruel criminals in Co Down, just as the mothers are safeguarding their litters of small cubs.

A badger-baiting gang digging into a sett to recover their dogs

After uncovering a spate of sett attacks, the Northern Ireland Badger Group has issued a warning to residents in the Dromore region.

It claims that badger baiters accompanied by fighting dogs have dug out at least three setts in recent weeks, two of which have been left lifeless.

According to a spokeswoman, “These guys target the mother badger during this time of year because she fights to protect her cubs.

“They go to extraordinary lengths. They dig a deep tunnel into the main chamber and seal the entrance openings, preventing the badgers from escaping.

“The biggest of the setts was still active, but our fear is that they are targeting them at this time of year, when the mother will have cubs.”

The spokesman said the badger baiters dig down to get at the badgers, then loose fighting dogs, leaving the badger dead and badly mutilated.

Badgers will fight to the death leaving the dogs mutilated in the process

“The young badgers would probably be killed in the whole process. It’s a horrible thing – I’ve seen the aftermath a number of times. The badger is completely mangled, almost unrecognisable,” he said.

“I’ve found foxes tied to trees close to setts where they had been baited with the dogs.”

Landowners in the Dromore area who are working with the group are “disgusted” by the cruelty, he said.

“They would certainly have local knowledge – where they dug out the setts is well off the beaten track.

“It’s horrific what goes on in our countryside. Because it happens in the hinterland of Ulster, we only know about it when we get phone calls about people being on the land. It happens well away from public view.”

The spokesman asked local people to watch out for men with shovels and accompanied by terriers or lurchers as well as suspicious vehicles close to where setts would be.

“One of the times to be on the lookout are Sunday mornings. There tends to be less people about then and they take advantage of that,” he said.

“Badgers and their setts are both protected – you are legally not allowed to interfere with them in any way, so if you find any evidence contact police on 101 or ring Crimestoppers, but if you actually see a crime taking place ring 999.

“The police are very proactive on this and take wildlife crime and animal cruelty very seriously.

“The courts have also started giving custodial sentences for animal cruelty. These baiters have committed a crime and there need to be robust measures in place to make them stop,” the spokesman said.

A PSNI spokesman said: “Under the Wildlife Order, if any person intentionally or recklessly kills, injures or takes any wild animal included in Schedule fives/he shall be guilty of an offence.

“It is also an offence to damage/destroy or obstruct the sett. The Welfare of Animals Act (NI) 2011 also legislates for offences in relation to fighting and these include offences which may be linked to badger baiting.”

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SAVE THE ASIAN ELEPHANTS: A NEW LAW BECKONS – BY DUNCAN MCNAIR

“Don’t bother – Elephants are finished.”

“You must be joking. Anyway it’s India’s problem.”

“It’s big money talking, and you’ll never change that.”

“Surely the travel industry will sort it out if you ask them?”

BRUTALLY ABUSED FOR YOUR PLEASURE

These were amongst the unpromising responses enjoined on Duncan McNair after returning from his first trip to India, in 2014, to assess for himself the horrors to Asian Elephants in modern tourism of which he had started hearing and, appalled, urging that something must be done.

This Duncan’s story:

The sad refrain had some truth: the species is indeed in desperate peril. Yes too, vested interests like the UK travel industry could do so much, and so could India and the other range states. But these are not policies if nothing is being done. And the UK cannot compel a mighty sovereign State like India, less still Sri Lanka, Thailand or Myanmar, to adopt our own ideals of elephant welfare – aside from the UK’s own cupboards rattling with skeletons like brutal industrialised farming or a legacy of trophy hunting.

India has excellent animal welfare laws, according Elephants the highest degree of protection, but they are widely circumvented by political interference and protection of vested interests.

But, I thought, surely the world’s most revered species, the Asian Elephant, need not – should not – meet its end under the cruelest of all animal abuse, babies screaming and crying under extreme torture to break their spirits (known as “the phajan”) for easy use in tourism?

THE PHAJAN BEATS ELEPHANTS INTO SUBMISSION FOR YOUR ‘PLEASURE’ IN THE TOURIST ‘INDUSTRY’

Back in London I tramped and trailed round many animal welfare organisations searching for a star to hitch my wagon to, but received reproofs. One charity urged me to be realistic and not waste time. A Government minister charged with animal welfare issues told me she had far better things to do than help Elephants.

But I started receiving encouragement too, and exhortation. It was so plain that public awareness of the horrors was so low yet when people heard of them, they were as appalled as I. So in early 2015 Save The Asian Elephants was born, with an immediate strategy by every means to drive up awareness of facts omitted from all travel brochures and websites, draped over for years with a mantle of secrecy. After all, in a functioning democracy a proper cause constantly advanced, linked to coherent, credible policies, should prevail over time.

Without funds STAE developed an ethos of voluntary, unpaid help – no wages or perks for anyone, and working off the lowest cost base. Just passion and commitment.

ELEPHANTS PAINTING LIKE THIS IS NOT NATURAL BEHAVIOUR

A wonderful team of eminences and experts soon emerged from every quarter, and many others of all ages and specialisms. My childhood dreams of a veterinary career (I had spent forever in libraries poring over the lives of famous vets then seeking them out via the telephone directory hoping for inspirational meetings) were dashed when my ineptitude at sciences became evident. But later I could see my life as a lawyer having worth far beyond fighting for my clients. I was thankful others of my profession came forward to join STAE.

Policies were developed that were not contingent on concurrence of vested interests or governments of indigenous states, but on what we in the UK could achieve by relentless exposition of the facts and proper pressure upon government.

A landmark policy of STAE’s (alongside those previously outlined in Animal Spirit) is new law: to ban the advertising, promotion and sale of unethical Asian elephant-related venues. Self-regulation by the travel industry having failed, and endless promises of change broken, compulsion of law is essential to stem supply (and then demand) of the vast trade in such abuse. Shockingly, to date STAE has identified over 1,000 tour companies promoting 210 venues where extreme brutality is committed to baby and adult Elephants to hundreds of thousands of UK tourists. Abused Elephants regularly attack and kill. These fetid places are also a storm of risks for tourists to acquire deadly airborne viruses like Covid 19 as well as TB that broken down Elephants readily transmit through coughing, sneezing and spraying water.

STAE has been in ongoing negotiation with the Prime Minister’s officials and government departments on our Asian Elephants (Tourism) Bill, drafted for Lord Zac Goldsmith. Hopes of new law soon for the UK are running high based on government assurances. Polls show STAE’s Bill is backed by 90% of Britons, confirmed by STAE’s petition and others aligned to it running at 32 million signatures, and 100 people and organisations of influence including all the major faiths of SE Asia.

DUNCAN MCNAIR, STAE CEO AT DOWNING STREET

STAE considers this law transposable to other countries across the West and beyond. Together they can stem this tide of abuse. And although Asian Elephants suffer uniquely from abusive tourism, such law can stand adapted for other species too.

Who knows the destiny of this ancient species, denizens of the Earth long before Man? But what Man has done so wrong, he can put right. Whilst Christian precepts apply to the protection of all of God’s creation, no religious faith is needed to believe that we should stand and fight for these gentle creatures, “megagardeners of the forests” on which we all rely. We hope and pray there is time for the Elephants.

Duncan McNair KHS is a lawyer and founder and CEO of Save The Asian Elephants.

STAE’s petition for change can be signed at: bit.ly/STAEpetition

Suggested cut and paste letters of support to Minister Zac Goldsmith and to your MP are at: http://stae.org/uk-minister/ and http://stae.org/your-mp/.

THE ELEPHANT THAT WAS IN THE ROOM

Save The Asian Elephants (STAE) and all the animal welfare sector are aghast at the weekend’s media reports that the Government has abandoned the Animals Abroad Bill despite all its commitments otherwise, received regularly by STAE’s team as pledges, promises, “it’s been cleared in Cabinet” and “you’re pushing at an open door” in over 20 meetings with No 10 and Defra since lockdown.

THE ANIMALS ABROAD BILL WOULD HELP STOP CRUELTY LIKE THIS

STAE is working to bring the entire sector together to ensure all is done to see this decision, if confirmed, reversed. Indeed with public support for a ban to protect elephants from the most extreme violence largely driven by the UK market running at over 90%, STAE’s petition now touching 1.1 million, and extreme emotions evoked in the electorate by torture of baby elephants, any such decision seems extraordinary as a General Election looms before late 2024.

PHAJAAN OR ‘CRUSHING’ IS THE TRADITIONAL ASIAN TORTURE OF YOUNG ELEPHANTS TO BREAK THEIR SPIRIT. IT IS DONE SO THAT THEY ARE SUBMISSIVE TO HUMANS.

Why on earth would Government be committed to these cruel acts? It must surely be in its own interests to take a principled lead over other parties (who will support it) and other nations, by pursuing the Bill. They are important measures now expanded in the Action Plan for Animal Welfare to all species abused in overseas tourism (including big cats, apes, bears, equines, dolphins) and not particularly controversial or difficult. On the contrary they are welcomed across the political divide. None of the measures to ban ads for “low welfare venues” impinge on Tory peers’ shooting weekends or even pigging out on foie gras, if that’s their tragic choice.

STAE CEO Duncan McNair speaking to Protect All Wildlife said “If confirmed, its sickening and foreshadowed in STAE’s communications with Govt and officials over the past year and my US TV interview on Unchained TV, despite every reassurance from Govt (including a letter signed by the Minister a week ago) all was on track.” 

Muted claims that the Russian war on Ukraine has stolen all available Parliamentary time are unconvincing. STAE traces the evidence of wavering elements in Govt much further back. As they say, the first casualty of war is the truth. We hope the Defra Ministers at the helm will turn this round, publish the Bill, consult and bring it into Parliament soon.

Thank you to Duncan McNair CEO, Save The Asian Elephants  for speaking to us.

WILD AND FREE, HOW THEY SHOULD BE

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MONTANA GOVERNOR KILLED RARE COLLARED MOUNTAIN LION CHASED UP A TREE BY HUNTING DOGS

Greg Gianforte has caused outrage after hunting and killing a COLLARED Mountain Lion outside Yellowstone National Park.

MONTANA GOVERNOR GREG GIANFORTE AND A RARE MOUNTAIN LION

The Republican governor slaughtered the Mountain Lion in December on U.S. Forest Service land in Park County, southwest of Emigrant, Montana. The five-year-old Mountain Lion, who was being monitored via GPS collar by staff biologists at Yellowstone National Park, was chased up a tree by dogs and then shot.

“The governor and friends tracked the lion on public lands,” said Gianforte’s press secretary Brooke Stroyke in a statement to The Washington Post who first reported on the events. “As the group got closer to the lion, members of the group, who have a hound training license, used four hounds to tree the lion once the track was discovered in a creek bottom on public land.”

Stroyke also said that once the Mountain Lion had been forced up the tree, Gianforte “harvested it and put his tag on it. He immediately called to report the legal harvest and then the [Fish, Wildlife & Parks] game warden.”

The governor’s office confirmed the kill, which occurred on December 28th on public land just north of Yellowstone National Park. Gianforte’s spokesman noted that he had a proper license.

Yet, many area residents are sceptical of the governor’s story. The Post reports:

Some Montanans have raised questions about the tactics employed during the hunt. One person familiar with the incident told The Post that the Mountain Lion was kept in the tree by the hunting dogs for a couple of hours while Gianforte travelled to the site in the Rock Creek drainage area. In neighbouring Wyoming, detaining a Mountain Lion in a tree until another hunter arrives is illegal.

“There are an estimated 34 to 42 Mountain Lions that reside year-round in Yellowstone,” explains The Post. The Mountain Lion Gianforte hunted, dubbed M220 by researchers, was a five-year old male.

A YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK MOUNTAIN LION

“We almost never see a Mountain Lion,” said Nathan Varley, a biologist who leads wildlife viewing tours in Yellowstone. “They’re just too secretive. They usually only move around at night. They love to hide. They just don’t sit out in the open very much.”

This marks the second time Gianforte has reportedly shot and killed a monitored animal who wandered beyond the protected boundaries of Yellowstone National Park. In February of last year, Gianforte violated state hunting regulations after slaughtering a collard wolf 10 miles outside Yellowstone without the necessary trapping license or training.

Last year, Gianforte outraged conservationists and animal campaigners after dramatically stripping back hunting laws in Montana. The new rulemaking authorized the widespread killing of wolves in areas bordering Yellowstone National Park, paving the way for the potential slaughter of around 85 percent of the state’s wolf population. The use of strangulation snares, night hunting, and bait to hunt and trap the animals was also permitted.

“The consequences are severe for wolves,” said Dan Wenk, who was Yellowstone National Park superintendent from 2011 to 2019.

In the last six months alone, a record 25 Yellowstone wolves have been shot, trapped, and killed by hunters. 19 of these animals were slaughtered in Montana just over the park border.

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The Dogs Of War: The Conflict In Ukraine Is Displacing Pets As Well As People!

Przemysl, Poland (CNN) –Jakub Kotowicz loves animals so much he decided he wanted to spend his life healing them.

But the Polish vet never thought he’d suddenly be inundated with animals rescued from a war next door.

Jakub is with the Ada Adoption Center in Przemyśl, a no-kill animal shelter in Przemysl, Poland, just 30 minutes from the border with Ukraine.

Since the bombs started falling in Ukraine, he and the other veterinarians and staff have not slept much at all because the need to find shelter for displaced animals isn’t abating.

ADA foundation staff members are risking their lives driving into Ukraine to help empty out shelters, and they are offering space and veterinary services for the animals that refugees cannot keep with them or carry over the border. The shelter animals are in danger of being abandoned and then starving to death as war surrounds them.

On a recent day, Dr. Kotowicz hoists a large German shepherd on the table. She was rescued from Ukraine. The tag on her collar reads ‘number 2,’ but the staff has named her Moon.

“She is in bad shape,” says Kotowicz, as he tries to draw blood.

Moon is dehydrated so it’s hard to find a vein.

But she has much bigger problems. An older dog, she has a tumour protruding from one of her mammary glands.

Another veterinarian holds her still while Dr. Kotowicz manages to draw blood from her dehydrated body. Then he starts on her ears, digging out a large amount of wax and dirt riddled with mites.

All the while, Moon is docile and still. But when the vet checks her temperature, Moon whimpers a bit. When he removes the thermometer, she relaxes and nuzzles her caregivers.

“We have to remove this tumour so she will need to have surgery,” Dr. Kotowicz says as he pets Moon’s head. “I hate to see them suffering like this.”

Down the hall, there are a whole host of dogs and cats, most of them brought in from a huge truck that has just come back from the war-torn areas of Ukraine.

In normal times, ADA Foundation provides care for any injured or abandoned animal — not just cats and dogs. The shelter not only offers medical care for the animals but also helps socialize them so the pets in their care can be adopted and the wild animals can be set free.

In yet another room at the foundation, more animal war stories. A little girl is holding a tiny goat named Sasha on a soft warm bed made for him. Sasha had a serious problem with his legs that the veterinarians at ADA mended.

Sasha’s little front legs are bound with gauze tape. But he is rambunctious.

Down the hall, there are a whole host of dogs and cats, most of them brought in from a huge truck that has just come back from the war-torn areas of Ukraine.

In normal times, ADA Foundation provides care for any injured or abandoned animal — not just cats and dogs. The shelter not only offers medical care for the animals but also helps socialize them so the pets in their care can be adopted and the wild animals can be set free.

In yet another room at the foundation, more animal war stories. A little girl is holding a tiny goat named Sasha on a soft warm bed made for him. Sasha had a serious problem with his legs that the veterinarians at ADA mended.

Sasha’s little front legs are bound with gauze tape. But he is rambunctious.

Florida, is one group trying to help ADA foundation and other shelters to secure funds but the number of animals and their needs are great. The veterinarians are working day and night with little sleep.

They feel strongly that the animals displaced by war should be cared for.

“They are part of the family,” Dr. Kotowicz said.

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