Thursday, January 21, 2010

Zoo News Digest 14th - 21st January 2010 (Zoo News 641)

Zoo News Digest 14th - 21st January 2010 (Zoo News 641)

Peter Dickinson

Dear Colleagues,

Happy 50th 'Lu'.

It is nice to see so many places pulling out the stops to send aid to Haiti. The South Lakes Wild Animal Park has actually set an example here by giving free entry to the park in return for a £2.00 donation. Quite amazing. In Thailand the Elephantstay crew are taking some of their animals over to Khao San Road to collect donations. I daresay that this will really anger some people and no doubt the Bangkok Post will be filled with letters. Still though it is all in a good cause. I know we all have our own special charities but sometimes we have to branch out...this is the law of Karma. What really sickens me is the amount of Haiti begging emails appearing in my junk folder just now. I really don't believe a single one.

My remarks last week on the Lions flying in to the Yorkshire Wildlife Park brought me three puzzled emails. If I return to my original comments on these animals made when the 'rescue' was first mentioned. I said that I thought it kinder that the animals were euthanased, and I understand that some individuals were. Euthanasia is not cruel and is a necessary tool within the modern zoo. I also stated that these sickly beasts were of little or no use to conservation and that there was no shortage of lions in the UK. I never doubted that once the operation got under way that the animals would arrive just in time for Easter or Whit. I really don't know why there was any puzzlement though because it was the welfare of the animals that was always my first concern and it still is. I put welfare above publicity and commercialism every time. I remain delighted that they have been given a shorter air journey than a long trek by road. There has been little or no mention of the wolves which I understood were going to South Wales. Perhaps they will arrive in the same shipment.

I was taken out to lunch this week by a reader of ZooNews Digest. I don't know if he wants me to mention his name so I won't. It was though an excellent meal, more beer than I have drunk in a while and an opportunity to talk 'zoo' and put the world to right. Very enjoyable. Thank you.

One person I will mention is my friend and colleague John Partridge who yesterday celebrated 35 years since he started working in Bristol zoo. It was snowing then as well, as he recalls. Congratulations John and here is wishing you another 35 years ;-) John never struck me as the retiring type though and has years left in him. He is a dedicated professional who has done more for zoos in the UK than many people realise. An excellent an informative writer too.

Talking of is a book that all zoos and zoo professionals should be adding to their Libraries.

Building a future for wildlife: zoos and aquariums committed to biodiversity conservation

Building a future for wildlife is the slogan of the World Zoo and Aquarium Conservation Strategy. Modern zoos and aquariums are indeed playing an increasingly active and important role in conserving species in their natural habitat. This richly illustrated book provides an overview of the partners, approaches and achievements of the world zoo and aquarium community in wildlife conservation. The book's main focus is on 25 conservation success stories from around the globe, portraying the many ways in which zoos and aquariums are committed to biodiversity conservation. This book was edited by Gerald Dick and Markus Gusset from the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA), who are both conservation biologists themselves.

Click on link to order

Please post in comments below if you feel so inclined.

This blog has readers from 127 countries: Afghanistan, Algeria, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cote D’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eire, England, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lapland, Lao, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Montenegro, Montserrat, Myanmar, Nepal, Netherlands, Netherlands Antilles, New Zealand, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay, US Virgin Islands, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Wales, Zambia.

The ZooNews Digest continues to be read more often by more staff in more zoos than any other publication.

Please consider advertising on this blog as I need the money but understand.... I am of stubborn principle and will not advertise products or services that I disagree with no matter how much you pay me.

Please feel free to use the comment section at the end of this Zoo News Digest.

Is your meeting/conference/symposium listed here?

If not why not? ZooNews Digest is read by more zoo people than any other similar publication. I will advertise up till the event.

Visit my latest hub webpages at:

Why don't you try writing on HubPages?

Write about what you know about or are interested in. You can post on line. Free to join and yet you can earn money continually. A passive income. Not much to begin with but it mounts up. It pays me enough to buy a cup of coffee every day...well nearly every day.

Read how with my "Quick Guide to Hub Construction." I truly believe it will be worth your while.

Please visit the Zoo Professionals Book Store for more if you are looking for books for yourself or as gifts.


On with links:

Zoo denies deer mistreatment claims

The Calgary Zoo says four deer that died at the zoo did not die because of human error, contrary to claims made yesterday by the group Zoocheck.

The animals died over the course of several months last year, not over the last week, as claimed by Zoocheck in information sent to media outlets Monday. The group said a zoo employee reported that four mule deer died as they were being rounded up.

"This is not the case and this is not true," said Calgary Zoo spokesman Simon Scott.

"We had no incident involving mule deer last week nor any incident involving human error and mule deer last week."

Four mule deer did die at the zoo between September and December of last year, said Scott.

One animal was 13 years old and had pneumonia, another was

Wildlife park’s hippo to celebrate 50th birthday on Jan. 26

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park will celebrate Lu, the hippopotamus’, 50th birthday with a special event at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 26.

The Wildlife Care Department will present Lu with his own birthday cake, and children from the Homosassa Elementary School will be attending the party to help Lu celebrate his birthday.

Park visitors, staff and school children will join in singing Happy Birthday, and park volunteers will provide cupcakes for the

Zoo to raise $250 million

The political face of Toronto Zoo’s ambitious fundraising plans says they are still looking to raise $250 million in the next nine years.

This despite the downturn in the economy and the public relations woes that have plagued the city’s Scarborough attraction for the past few years.

Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti said Monday, despite only planning to raise $16 million in the first five years of the campaign, the goal is still reachable.

“It’s all about public and private partnerships,” he said, adding should the zoo be successful in acquiring two giant pandas from China, it would help the fundraising efforts.

In 2008, the zoo announced the ambitious plan to upgrade the zoo’s exhibits.

Severed ties

That same year, the board severed ties with the zoo foundation, the fundraising arm of the attraction, amid fears the largely volunteer charitable organization couldn’t raise those types of funds.

Earlier this month, the zoo hired a new executive director of development, who

First white baboon welcomes 100-day birth celebration in E China

Malignant malaria found in apes

The parasite which causes malignant malaria in humans has been identified in gorillas for the first time.

Researchers analysed faeces from wild gorillas in Cameroon and blood samples from a captive animal from Gabon.

The study says increasing contact between humans and primates due to logging and deforestation raises the risk of transmission of new pathogens.

The research findings are published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal.

New genetic sampling techniques allowed scientists from France, Cameroon, Gabon and the US to examine evidence of malaria parasites in the faecal matter of wild gorillas and chimpanzees in Cameroon.

"Sampling malaria parasites from apes in the wild has until now been very difficult", said Dr Francisco Ayala from the University of California, Irvine.

The team also took blood samples from wild born, pet animals in Gabon.

DNA evidence of Plasmodium falciparum, the parasite that causes malignant malaria in humans, was found in faecal samples from two gorilla subspecies, the highly endangered cross-river gorilla and the

Wildlife crime lessons to be offered to schools

Schools are to be offered lessons on wildlife crime as part of efforts to tackle the illegal killing of animals.

Police, the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) and Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (Paw) have worked on the education programme.

It was launched at Wildlife Crime Day at the RZSS's Highland Wildlife Park.

Organisers said the Amur tiger - five are in the park's collection - was an example of a species targeted by criminals internationally.

Poaching has led to numbers of the big cat falling to critically low levels.

Jasper Hughes, education officer at Highland Wildlife Park at Kincraig, said the wildlife crime day

Nunavut hotline callers claim boom times for polar bear

Irngaut: “The future of the polar bear is bright.”

Callers to Nunavut Tunngavik Inc.’s polar bear hotline have spoken and they’re saying bear populations are booming.

Paul Irngaut, a wildlife advisor with NTI, said he’s interviewed 35 hunters through the hotline. They report signs of climate change, including thinning sea ice, but say that polar bears are adapting to the changes—and thriving, Irngaut said.

“Yes climate change is happening, but [hunters] don’t feel it’s going to have a negative impact on polar bears,” Irngaut said Monday. “Polar bears hunt on land, they hunt on open water.”

In fact, Irngaut said hunters view thinning sea ice as a boon for polar bears because it makes hunting for seals easier. And hunters also reported larger numbers of polar bears on land near communities, where they’ve been damaging food caches and cabins.

What exactly that proves about the health of individual bears isn’t certain, but Irngaut said it’s proof polar bear populations are healthy and growing.

“The polar bear population has exploded to the point that Inuit are seeing bears that they never used to see.”

“The future of the polar bear is bright,” he said. But that’s a minority opinion these days, with conservation groups and many scientists claiming that the loss of sea ice due to climate change means the polar bear is facing habitat

Are we tracking a big cat or a bunny?

The Abominable Snowman, Big Foot, the Loch Ness Monster and the beast that stalks the Fens are just some of the myths that have yet to be proved fact or fiction.

The Fen Tiger was first reported in 1982 in Cottenham, and this week a paw print was found in the snow.

But big cat experts from Linton Zoo and Shepreth Wildlife Park are split over the existence of the beast.

Paw prints photographed in the snow at Histon prompted claims they might belong to a big cat.

One reader, Kerry Goodayle, said: “I can’t imagine it was a dog – it could be a big cat, maybe a puma.”

Since the story was reported in the News, Linton Zoo has received a number of calls from the public asking about animal prints they have seen.

And Kim Simmons, spokeswoman for the zoo, has spoken out to scotch suggestions that a big cat is out there somewhere.

She said: “There is no way that the prints shown in the photos in the News could be a big cat

“There is a lot of hysteria about the so-called Fen Tiger, but I am sure it doesn’t really exist. If it does, where does it come from, and what is it feeding on?

“The zoo has been keeping all kinds of big cats since the late Sixties, including pumas, leopards, panthers, tigers and lions, so we have many years’ experience of behaviour and footprints.

“We have always kept an open mind about the Fen Tiger, which has become a bit of a Loch Ness monster, and we have

Rockwool keeps animals warm at Newquay Zoo

Insulation firm protects lions, marmosets and kinkajous from the worst UK winter in decades

Newquay Zoo and insulation firm Rockwool have formed an unlikely partnership to ensure the zoo’s exotic animals are protected from the worst British winter for decades.

The Cornish zoo is installing stone wool insulation provided by Rockwool in its enclosures so that the likes of African lions, silvery marmosets and kinkajous, can keep warm in our inhospitable climate.

The zoo, which tries to place a great emphasis on conservation, called upon Rockwool to ensure its enclosures mirror the complex habitats from which the animals are drawn.

Insulated habitats also ensure animals that favour colder climes are kept cool during the warmer summer months.

Hans Schreuder, the Rockwool managing director, said: “When we heard that Newquay Zoo was looking for sustainable

Islamabad Zoo presenting a deserted look

Islamabad Zoo, the most visited spot by the people, now days wears a ‘ghost town look’ as the influx of visitors dies down due to harsh and chilly weather in the federal capital.

It is situated at the foot of the Margalla Hills, offers tremendous recreation to the people from different age groups due to its natural wildlife environment. Besides, many foreign tourists and children particularly visit the natural habitat of the animals. It also offers people a good chance to learn about various animals and birds.

The unique characteristic of the zoo is its natural environment with diverse kind of wildlife species that were mostly donated by different wildlife organisations.

Similar to other recreational spots, the number of visitors to the Islamabad Zoo has drastically declined that has also resulted in financial losses of the management.

An official of CDA said that the concerned authorities will enlarge the cages for leopards, wolves

Crocodile is living in a bungalow in Kent

Caesar is kept as a pet by retired civil servant Chris Weller, who has moved into the loft of his home to allow the crocodile to roam through other parts of the property eating supermarket steaks and prawns.

More than 4,000 animals are licenced under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act (DWAA), which imposes strict security rules on owners to prevent escapes.

Caesar, who is four years old, is already 4.5ft in length, although his species can live for up to 40 years and reach 7ft.

Mr Weller, 63, bought him in 2007, as a-one-year-old, when he was only 1ft long. He has spent around £20,000 converting the loft and turning the dining room and conservatory of his home in Strood, Kent, into a habitat for the crocodile, with a special pool fitted.

Mr Weller said the downstairs kitchen, bathroom and hallway were "neutral zones", for both him and Caesar.

"He eats meat and fish," Mr Weller said. "He really likes steaks and salmon, tuna and prawns. I get a lot of it from the supermarket, but it is only the budget ranges.

"He comes in the kitchen sometimes. When he is hungry, he will come when I call his name."

Mr Weller has installed a cat-flap device to allow Caesar to move between rooms. Although the crocodile can

Kankaria Zoo may soon get CCTVs, infrared cameras

With security of all zoos in the state being on its main agenda list, the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) might give a go ahead to Kankaria Zoo Proposal to install CCTVs and infrared cameras. CZA Member Secretary B S Bonal has called a meeting of all the representatives of the zoos in India on February 20 to discuss security proposals.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Bonal said, “The agenda of the meeting and the proposals made by the zoo will be discussed on February 20. Till then, I cannot comment on this issue.” Meanwhile, CZA Evaluation and Monitoring Officer Brij Gupta said, “In the last six months, several cases of animal thefts have been reported from zoos in India. This could be one of the important issues to be discussed at the annual meeting.”

About the recent theft of Military Macaws (worth two lakh rupees) at Kankaria Zoo, the CZA officials said the mastermind behind

Nashville Zoo's Attendance Reaches Record High

New Animals, Cool Summer Temperatures Credited For Increase In Visitors

Albino turtles are donated to the Red River Valley Zoo

The rare albino snapping turtles came from an anonymous donor. They just showed up one day.

Zookeepers know someone found the clutch of eggs, hatched them, and released all but the albino's. They say that's good because an

Chester Zoo’s Rhino Maniacs team to tackle Mount Kilimanjaro in bid to preserve black rhinos

A TEAM of Chester Zoo staff will begin their ascent in September up the 19,340 feet of the world’s largest free-standing mountain – Mount Kilimanjaro – in aid of Black Rhino conservation.

The team, dubbed the Rhino Maniacs, are doing the in their own time, including all the training and fundraising, to help raise awareness and money for the Zoo’s Eastern Black Rhino conservation programme.

Team member and rhino keeper

Aussie Zoo: Good News for Endangered Species

On the outskirts of the country town of Dubbo in New South Wales Australia, is the Taronga Western Plains Zoo. The 1,000 acres of Australian bush provides a safe environment for many threatened animal species.

And it’s a setting that offers more than just a stable existence for its inhabitants. The zoo’s Life Science Manager, Paul Metcalfe, explains.

[Paul Metcalfe, Life Science Manager]:

“The zoo has been involved in a number of endangered species breeding programs for some time now, particularly we focus on rhinos. We hold three species

Romeos can pop question in animal enclosures at Colchester Zoo

WILL zoo be mine?

Romantic chaps can woo their sweethearts in front of an audience of elephants, giraffes or sealions under a new scheme at Colchester Zoo.

Perfect Proposal gives lovers a chance to get down on oneknee while in the company of their favourite creature.

The half-an-hour St Valentine’s Day experience offers couples a private feeding and training session in the animal enclosure of their choice.

A zoo keeper will be on hand to supervise - and will also be at the ready with a bottle of wine and a red rose for Romeos who are ready to pop the question.

Animals available for the £150 sessions - which must be pre-booked - also

From zoo to circus: it's time for real inquiry

I was a zoo convert until the recent circus act of animal deaths. Ironically, it was thanks to the embattled Calgary Zoo that made me change my mind about the cruelty of caging animals meant for the wild. It was the first zoo I ever visited, having boycotted them all my life. I found it to be a good facility that puts animals first, at least it seemed that way on the surface.

The zoo appeared focused on the right priorities: it provides ample space in landscapes that closely match habitats in the wild; it rescues orphaned cubs, injured animals and other wildlife at risk of dying if allowed to remain in their natural environment; and, through its Centre for Conservation Research, it supports projects to learn how humans can better coexist with other species.

For visitors, this tranquil oasis in the heart of Calgary provides a brief respite from the hectic pace of to-day's busy life, and brings out the child in us all.

Unfortunately, a slew of unnatural animal deaths has undermined all of those early good efforts that began decades ago, under the direction of former president Peter Karsten. He turned the Calgary Zoo into a world-class model for others to emulate, and pushed the facility in a direction that was less about attraction and more about animal conservation, especially of those most suited to Calgary's climate.

That approach gave way to profits and entertainment when Karsten was replaced by former CEO Alex Graham, who broke fundraising records and proposed controversial and ambitious expansion plans, such as bringing whales to a landlocked zoo, thousands of kilometres away from the ocean.

He thankfully left in 2007 and was replaced by the current CEO Clement Lanthier, a veterinarian.

Karsten's legacy seems to be slipping even further away under Lanthier, who refuses to accept there's a pattern to the some 50 animal deaths since 2004. He won't even call for an independent inquiry, instead asking the industry Association of Zoos and Aquariums in Washington and the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums (CAZA) in Ottawa to investigate -- via a panel of former zookeepers, curators and veterinarians.

Asking the accrediting bodies to investigate is hardly independent, as these organizations have already found the zoo to be operating according to industry standards and regulations

Scientists Find a Shared Gene in Dogs With Compulsive Behavior

Scientists have linked a gene to compulsive behavior — in dogs.

Researchers studied Doberman pinschers that curled up into balls, sucking their flanks for hours at a time, and found that the afflicted dogs shared a gene. They describe their findings — the first such gene identified in dogs — in a short report this month in Molecular Psychiatry.

Dr. Nicholas Dodman, director of the animal behavior clinic at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, in North Grafton, Mass., and the lead author of the report, said the findings had broad implications for compulsive disorders in people and animals.

Estimates have obsessive-compulsive disorder afflicting anywhere from 2.5 percent to 8 percent of the human population. It shows up in behavior like excessive hand washing, repetitive checking of stoves, locks and lights, and damaging actions like pulling one’s hair out by the roots and self-mutilation.

The disorder has been used in popular movies and television shows to define characters like the reclusive writer Melvin

WWF says China's wild tigers face extinction (Strange that they should use Malabon Zoo for the photographic link - Peter)

The World Wildlife Fund warned on Tuesday that the wild tiger faced extinction in China after having been decimated by poaching and the destruction of its natural habitat.

"If there are no urgent measures taken, there is a high risk that the wild tiger will go extinct," Zhu Chunquan, conservation director of biodiversity at WWF China, said ahead of the start of the Year of the Tiger on February 14.

Zhu said that China's State Forestry Administration (SFA) estimated there were only around 50 tigers left in the nation's wilderness.

"Globally, WWF estimates that if poaching and other threats continue, there are around 30 years left until tigers go extinct," he told AFP.

Loss and degradation of the tigers' habitat in China and poaching of the animals as well as their prey — or source of food — were behind the rapid disappearance of the animal, he added.

The SFA says around 20 Siberian tigers remain in China's northeast, 20 Bengal tigers in Tibet, and 10 Indochinese tigers in the southwest of the nation.

"As for the South China tiger, after the late 1970s, there has been no concrete evidence to show that there are any left," Zhu said.

In the 1950, about 4,000 of the South China variety roamed China, he said.

The WWF says on its website that the


Fadnavis slams govt Gorewada zoo

South-West Nagpur MLA Devendra Fadnavis on Sunday slammed the Democratic Front (DF) government and guardian minister Shivajirao Moghe for its apathy towards Gorewada international zoo project.

Moghe on Saturday had said that the government did not have the money to build the zoo and it had been found unviable for built operate and transfer (BOT) basis. "It seems that Moghe has not bothered to go through the project report prepared by Bernard Harrison & Friends Ltd. The project is not only viable but a profitable one," Fadnavis told TOI.

However, if the government really thought that the project was unviable then it showed complete breakdown of government machinery in the state. Chief minister Ashok Chavan had included the zoo in the Vidarbha package announced during recently-concluded winter session. "This shows what kind of whitewash the package was," the MLA said.

Although the international zoo was cleared by state government way back in December 2005, it has remained on paper due to various factors including inter-department squabbles and general apathy of

It's all about giving animals a good life in the zoo

It is not about who runs the zoo but how it's managed. A good team of experts, and resources, will give zest to animal life in capitvity.

These are the views of experts in response to Zoo Negara director Dr Mohamad Ngah's comment earlier this month that the government had no right to get a government-linked company (GLC) to manage the zoo.

Dr Mohamad was responding to Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Douglas Uggah Embas, who last month said that the government was considering several options to upgrade the zoo, including turning the Malaysian Zoological Society into a GLC.

Botanist Dr L.G. Saw said experts, resources and aesthetic value mattered the most when promoting a zoo. Without any of these components, any zoo will be tough to manage.

“A zoo is an expensive venture. It depends on how well it is taken care of, whether by the government, a public listed company or a non-governmental organisation," he said.

Saw cited Taiping Zoo as a good example of a well-managed zoo.

“In the end, it boils down to a good team of experts and a pool of resources. You cannot have one without the other or you will face problems trying to take care of the animals and their environment.”

A zoologist from the Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM), who declined to be named, said public participation was needed to ensure that a zoo appealed to visitors.

This is essential to convey the message of conservation to both the young and old. Conservation is a sign of a progressive society, therefore public recommendations and views will help improve Zoo Negara.

"Besides, a zoo is an education centre for conservation

Zoo's white rhino pregnancy ends in stillbirth

Officials at the Indianapolis Zoo says they're saddened that the pregnancy of a rare white rhinoceros has ended in a stillbirth.

Zoo experts say they may never know why the baby white rhino was stillborn last week.

Zoo spokeswoman Judy Gagen says the pregnancy of a 30-year-old white rhino called Gloria was normal and nothing seemed amiss when she showed signs of going into labor Tuesday.

But when the female calf was born about 12 hours later it never took a breath, indicating that it

White lion cubs at Zoodoo

ZOODOO Wildlife Park near Richmond has taken delivery of some precious cargo from South Africa.

It is now the proud owner of four white lion cubs two females and two males. They are all six or seven months old, from different litters, and born and bred in captivity.

They romped around their enclosure yesterday with handler Megan Stein and park owner Trevor Cuttriss, who were clad from head to toe in quarantine clothing as access to the animals is extremely restricted for 30 days.

The four cubs Tara and Chase, and a female and male still to be named appeared comfortable in their new surroundings, with Ms Stein occasionally picking up and holding one of the cubs for the benefit of photographers taking pictures behind glass.

Mr Cuttriss said their new home was specifically built to house lions and exceeded national standards. He believed Zoodoo was only the third zoo-park in Australia to have white lions.

"The white lion is occasionally found in wildlife reserves in South Africa and is a rare colour

Chimp sanctuary reaches out to public through fundraisers, events

It’s lunchtime at Save the Chimps Sanctuary, and Tanya watches visitors through the window of her shelter while she eagerly waits to be fed.

Hungry chimpanzee screeches abound, as sanctuary director Jen Feuerstein puts her face up against the glass and hoots at Tanya who can hear her through tiny open cracks on the sides of the window.

“Hey, pretty mama. I know. You know I can’t open that window,” Feuerstein says. “Unfortunately, there will always be a barrier between us.”

When you hear some of their stories and what each of the chimpanzees have endured during decades of being subjects of biomedical research, it’s hard to believe they’d want anything to do with humans, especially strangers.

But sparing no shyness, Tanya puckers her lips up against the glass to give a visitor a kiss.

“The chimps are very, very forgiving,” said Feuerstein, who worked as a caretaker at a primate research lab in Georgia for five years before coming to Save the Chimps. “I look at them with a lesson to learn. If I was treated the way they were treated, I would hate the human race. But if

Zoo scouts black market for falcons, pays Rs 20L

The Chhatbir Zoo has got embroiled in a serious controversy after senior officials purchased four very rare Shaheen falcons from the grey market at a cost of Rs 5 lakh each for the Rs 56 lakh falcon-breeding project.

The falcons have been hidden away from public in the zoo’s quarantine facilities as the authorities do not have the required permission from government or the Central Zoo Authority to keep them. “The zoo authorities were planning to show the birds once the permission came from the Government of India. However, a dispute arose between the officials and the veterinarians over handling and medication of the birds, which are very sensitive,” sources told TOI.

The mystery of the birds worth Rs 20 lakh and their source has only deepened considering the fact that there are no official dealers of this bird of prey in India. Besides, it has not been sighted in Punjab for many years.

In fact, under the terms of the falcon-breeding project sanctioned by the government, permission has to be given for either buying the falcons from dealers abroad or

Zoo's survival plans underway to save Gorillas

Humans have pushed the Western Lowland Gorilla into a dangerous state of existence, but through the species survival plan, or SSP, there is hope for both them and us.

In an effort to promote awareness and increase support of preserving this grand mammal, 2009 has been designated “Year of the Gorilla” by UNEP Convention on Migratory Species, UNEP/UNESCO Great Ape Survival Project, and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums. One of several organizations participating in this endeavour is the Toronto Zoo and the species survival plan is a significant part of that objective.

“Any animal that’s endangered, in a zoo environment, has a group of people that look out for them and it’s called the SSP,” says Angie Snowie who is a keeper at the zoo. “This group of people is basically in charge of makin

Feds sued over Mexican gray wolf petition

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is being sued over a petition that seeks to list the Mexican gray wolf on the federal endangered species list separate from other gray wolves in North America.

Conservationists submitted the petition in August, arguing a separate listing was biologically warranted and legally required.

WildEarth Guardians filed a lawsuit Tuesday in an effort to force the Fish and Wildlife Service to issue a finding on the petition. The lawsuit is part of a campaign started in December to persuade the Obama administration

Don’t relocate orangutans for eco-tourism: Sabah

Sabah is not keen to relocate any orangutans to peninsular Malaysia for eco-tourism purposes.

State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun said that not only was it dangerous to remove the environment-sensitive primates from their natural habitat, but local people were also against such a move to send away the state’s icon.

He was commenting on a proposal by Deputy Tourism Minister Datuk James Dawos Mamit to obtain orangutans from Sabah and Sarawak to set up an eco-tourism attraction similar to the Sepilok orangutan sanctuary in Sandakan and the Semenggoh Wildlife Centre in Kuching.

Masidi said that orangutans were not like some other animals that could be relocated from their habitat easily, and such movement could prove traumatic for them.

He said relocating an orangutan involved a lot technicalities and planning, saying they cannot be just caught and flown out to another location.

“The orangutans should stay where they are. Those

World Wildlife Fund lists the 10 most threatened species in 2010

The World Wildlife Fund has released its annual list of the most threatened species in 2010, and it includes some of the most-loved animals on the planet. The group says the long-term survival of many of these species is threatened by climate change and loss of habitat.

Here is the list, with information about the particular problems facing each animal.

Tiger: The cutting down of forests, called deforestation, and climate change are reducing the size of the tiger's natural habitat. Tigers also are killed by poachers for skins and other body parts, which are used in some ancient Asian medicines.

Polar bear: Loss of ice means polar bears have smaller hunting and breeding

China's wild tigers face extinction 'in 30 years'

China's wild tiger population has fallen to just 50 and faces extinction due to poaching and the destruction of its natural habitat, the World Wildlife Fund has warned.

"If there are no urgent measures taken, there is a high risk that the wild tiger will go extinct," Zhu Chunquan, conservation director of biodiversity at WWF China, said ahead of the start of the Year of the Tiger on February 14.

Mr Zhu said China's State Forestry Administration (SFA) estimated there were only around 50 tigers left in the nation's wilderness.

"Globally, WWF estimates that if poaching and other threats continue, there are around 30 years left until tigers go extinct," he told AFP.

Loss and degradation of the tigers' habitat in China and poaching of the animals as well as their prey - or source of food - were behind the rapid disappearance of the animal, he added.

The SFA says around 20 Siberian tigers remain in China's north-east, 20 Bengal tigers in Tibet, and 10 Indochinese tigers

Study: Rising seas threaten Bangladesh tigers

One of the world's largest tiger populations could be wiped out this century as rising seas threaten to engulf their dwindling habitat in the coastal mangrove forests of Bangladesh, researchers said Wednesday.

A projected sea-level rise of 11 inches (28 centimeters) above 2000 levels along coastal Bangladesh by 2070 may cause the remaining tiger habitat in the Sundarbans to decline by 96 percent, pushing the total population to as few as five tigers, according to the new World Wildlife Fund-led study published this month in the peer-reviewed journal, Climatic Change.

Studies in the past have shown that tiger populations below 25 have difficulty surviving.

Colby Loucks, WWF's deputy director of conservation science, said in a statement that tigers were capable of thriving in a wide range of habitats from the snowy forests of Russia to the tropical

From The Blog -

Saigon Safari Park in the Planning

Indonesian Tigers as Pets. Good Idea or Not?

Orangutan Makes Peace

Postponement of Zion Wildlife Gardens Case

Chimpanzees Make Their Own Video

Gorillas from Zurich to the National Zoo in Pretoria

Report on the Wolf Escape in Skane Zoo

South Lakes Zoo - Free Entry for £2.00 Donation to Haiti Earthquake Appeal Fund

Job Losses at Jersey Zoo

Tiger (Herd) feeding in Harbin Safari Park

More on the Cold Problems in Jaipur Zoo

Deer Die of Cold in Jaipur

Lucky Money for the Year of the Tiger

Two Bear Cubs Missing From Zoo

Great Ape Trust Zoo to Lose Staff and Animals

Exotic Animals in Private Hands in the UK

Living With Wolves

Video Clip of Melbourne Zoo Elephant Calf

Lion Extinction Looms

Zion Wildlife Gardens Charges Update

Eclipse Causes Odd Behaviour in Zoo Keepers

Captive Breeding of Sumatran Rhino

Polar Bears in Tropical Climates

Second Elephant Born in an Australian Zoo

The Sacred Crocodiles of Manghopir

Chimpanzees and Fire

What The Fate of Haiti's Zoo?

Death a Part of Life at Rio Grande Zoo

Rhino Conservation and Poaching Punishments

I Don't Usually Agree With PETA

500 Tigers Kept As Pets in Ontario


Pollution and Polar Bears

Plus there is even more on the Blog. Scroll down...added to daily. Just the zoo interest stuff



The Zoo Biology Group is concerned with all disciplines involved inthe running of a Zoological Garden. Captive breeding, husbandry,cage design and construction, diets, enrichment, man management,record keeping, etc etc



NEWSLETTER #18 FEBRUARY 2010 Latest Newsletter HERE



The February 2010 issue of ZOOS' PRINT [Volume XXV, Number 2] is published and the online version is available free on the web at

Please note that if you wish to download the full magazine all at once click on Complete Magazine. If you want to select articles see below and you can click on any article and download it.

Thanking you,

Sanjay Molur, Editor and Sally Walker, Editor Emeritus

List of Individual Articles

Complete Magazine, Pp. 1-28

Cover - including contents, publication information and other cover material

This month - That age” - ZOOS’ PRINT 25 years ago ZOOS’ PRINT & ZOO ZEN -- S. Walker, Pp. 1-2

25 years of ZOO, ZOOS PRINT, ZOO ZEN -- Manoj Misra, Pp. 3-4

A Career in the Z.O.O. — Zoo Outreach Organisation -- Sanjay Molur, Pp. 5-6

No Room for Elephants in Zoos ? -- S.S. Bist, Pp. 7-10

Zoo Lex - Tiergarten Schonbrunn - Rainforest House P. 10

Training for Senior Staff, Kabul Zoo, Afghanistan -- S. Walker, P. 11

Report on the Kabul Zoo officers Training Visit to India -- R. Marimuthu and S. Walker, Pp. 12-16

Getting along with Elephants in Sumatra, Indonesia -- S. Walker, P. 17

HECx Educator Training Workshops all over Sumatra -- R. Marimuthu & S. Walker, P. 18

HECx Sumatra Workshop personalities -- S. Walker, P. 19

HECx Workshop content -- R. Marimuthu & S. Walker, P. 20

Host’s Report on HECx Workshops Sumatra -- Harmita Desmerry and Kaniwa Berliani, P. 21

Zoo and Wildlife Education Reports Pp. 22-24

ZOO ZEN Special Issue on Visitor Behaviour P. 24

Rescue of Short nosed vine snake in Assam University -- K. Mazumdar and Mithra Dey, P. 25

Head injury in wild boar -- S. Anoop, P. R. Kumar, K. S. Sundaram, P. Skaria, P. Reshmi and M. Arun, P. 26

Syngamus trachea Infestation in Emu -- Swapna Abraham, A George, Julie B., Gopakumar S. and H. Viswanathan, P. 27

Protective Cover for the Foot Lesions in Captive Asian Elephants -- K. S. Subramanian, P. 28

The ZOOS' PRINT Journal has been closed and a new Journal called Journal of Threatened Taxa is being published and has its own website which can be accessed from this link


6.00pm, 9 February 2010
 ZSL Communicating Science series.



BVZS Spring meeting 2010. Theme "Preventative Medicine"
Venue Torquay and Paignton Zoo. Dates will be April 23rd to April 25th. More information will be posted soon. The Conference Hotel will be the Barcelo Imperial Hotel (Hotel Torquay, Barceló Torquay Imperial Hotel, Southern England)

Accommodation rates are £80.00 per room including breakfast regardless of occupancy.

Rooms can be booked via the hotel website as above website using the “BVG” code in the promotion code on the left hand side of the webpage. Alternatively rooms can be booked via central reservations on 08701 688833 quoting “British Veterinary Group”

60 rooms have been placed on an allocation for delegates Any unconfirmed rooms shall been released 21 days prior to the event, subject to availability.

Further details about the Hotel can be found here

For latest details including a call for papers click HERE

Registration form can be downloaded here

The English Riviera website does offer an online accommodation booking facility for those delegates who wish to book an alternative standard of accommodation.


Join Zoo News Digest Facebook Page
updated daily


For Zoo Jobs and Related Vacancies please visit:

For notification of Zoo related Meetings, Conferences, Courses and Symposia go to:


ZooNews Digest is an independent publication, not allied or attached to any zoological collection. Many thanks.

Kind Regards,

Wishing you a wonderful week,

Peter Dickinson


UK: ++ 44 (0)753 474 3377
Thailand: ++ 66 (0)861 382 450

Skype: peter.dickinson48

Mailing address:
Suite 201,
Gateway House,
78 Northgate Street,
United Kingdom

"These are the best days of my life"

No comments:

Post a Comment