Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Zoo News Digest 9th - 13th January 2010 (Zoo News 640)

Zoo News Digest 9th - 13th January 2010 (Zoo News 640)

Peter Dickinson

Dear Colleagues,

2010! Wow doesn't time fly by? I was so surprised to learn that this year is the 25th Anniversary of ZOO, the Zoo Outreach Organisation. I first came across this remarkable organisation when I was still working in Wales and have almost since the start of ZooNews Digest included details of their various publications. It has been a little bit more difficult since I started travelling but I try. I did meet Sally Walker briefly when she was giving a talk in Chester Zoo many years ago. I look on her as a friend today (even though, as she says, we don't always see eye to eye) and never cease to be amazed by her work output, particularily in difficult times. When I travelled in South India I was given such a lot a help from the group in the form of advice and introductions. I even got the opportunity to visit the ZOO headquarters, the nerve centre, and meet the team. Sally was not there but the rest were. Such lovely friendly helpful people...a true team! It is this teamwork which is the key to success. ZOO has helped shape zoos in India today, to educate and promote conservation, enrichment and more. This has been so very difficult at times as the manner in which Indian Zoos are managed does not lend itself easily to change. It should be said that ZOO has managed to do as much as it has because of the support of many zoo organisations around the world. Credit is due and long may it continue. My sincere congratulations to ZOO at reaching this milestone.
Criticising and even condemning zoos or a particular group of zoos is very easy to do. I do it all the time. I never enter any zoo with the aim of criticism but rather to form an honest opinion. See in my Zoo Hubs. The difference between myself and organisations of the likes of IDA (In Defense of Animals) is that my judgement is made as an insider with 40+ years of practical experience and a much greater understanding of the workings of zoos and of animals. I don't doubt that the IDA people like animals and even care about them but they just don't understand them, or zoos. Listing of zoos is easy. Different people look at different things and judge by them. I would probably agree with some of their criticisms as no doubt would many other zoo professionals. Without having the opportunity to visit the collections I believe that the IDA list is pure mischief making based as it is on assumption, presumption, misunderstanding and misinterpretation. Though I could be wrong.

I note that one 'rescue centre' has recently taken in seven white tigers and 2 tabby tigers. It would be interesting to know the origins of the animals. I wondered though was it perhaps that some holders have suddenly realised that they were keeping something that was in actual fact Not rare, Not endangered and Not important. Then again in may be the dip in the economy that is to blame as the article suggests.

I continue to be abused by the Craig Busch Fan Club with unfounded (fabricated and completely untrue) remarks as well as threats of physical violence. All this for the article I wrote back in September on Craig Busch and the Zion Wildlife Gardens. Out of all the articles I have written recently this one gets the second highest numbers of visitors each day. In a way though these stupid remarks are not a bad thing as they expose a lunatic fan base whose inane, badly spelt remarks tend to alienate the more sensible fans. The fence sitters are climbing off the fence and sitting on the right side.

I am delighted to see that has offered to transport the lions from Romania over to the UK and on to the Yorkshire Wildlife Park. It is so easy to condemn airlines when we are faced with long stays in airports or cancellations but at the end of the day they are often so very generous as well.

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On with links:

2009 Top Ten Worst Zoos for Elephants

List documents devastating consequences of keeping elephants in North American zoos.

San Rafael, Calif. - The 2009 list of the Ten Worst Zoos for Elephants, released today by In Defense of Animals (IDA), exposes the hidden suffering of elephants in zoos. In its sixth year, the list highlights how confinement of these giants to tiny enclosures wreaks havoc on their physical and psychological health and leads to premature death for many. For the first time, the list includes a Canadian entry, the Toronto Zoo.

India took the lead internationally last year when it stunned the zoo world by banning elephants in all zoos. Authorities cited problems common to most zoos, such as lack of space, poor breeding, and the absence of any positive effect on elephant conservation.

In contrast to India's progressive leadership, North American zoos remain mired in the past, denying the devastating impacts of zoo captivity on elephants, sinking hundreds of millions of dollars into woefully inadequate exhibit renovations, and clinging to archaic and cruel circus-style training methods. The expert testimony in federal court of Mike Keele, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ elephant group head, on behalf of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and its brutal elephant handling practices is a mark of just how out of step with progressive elephant care and advocacy most zoos have become.

"The Ten Worst Zoos for Elephants list shines a spotlight on the terrible suffering of elephants in zoos," said IDA president Elliot Katz, DVM. "It’s time for North American zoos to join India in recognizing that Earth’s largest land mammals don’t belong in urban zoos which lack the space and complex natural conditions elephants need. Zoos must follow the lead of the two U.S. sanctuaries that provide elephants with vast acreage in natural habitats and a far superior quality of life."

IDA's 2009 Ten Worst Zoos for Elephants List: READ LIST

The big cat rescue mission

Friendly low fare airline, has pledged to fly a pride of neglected lions from a Romanian zoo to Yorkshire free of charge this February as part of, what is planned to be, the biggest ever big cat rescue to date. has joined forces with Yorkshire Wildlife Park, who is leading the mission, to charter a one-off flight to rescue a pride of 13 lions which are being held in cramped conditions, facing an uncertain future at Oradea Zoo, Romania. Under the supervision of leading wildlife veterinarians, the big cats, which range in age from one to 27 years old, will be flown to Doncaster Robin Hood Airport and re-housed at a specially built 10-acre enclosure at Yorkshire Wildlife Park, Doncaster. Philip Meeson, Boss of said, “When we heard about the plight of the lions at the Romanian zoo, we immediately offered to provide a charter aircraft and the support of our highly trained staff free of charge to transport the big cats to their new home near Doncaster this February.” “As Yorkshire’s leading leisure airline, it’s a great honour to be involved in what is looking to be one of the biggest ever cat rescues. We are working closely with the wildlife park to ensure the campaign runs as smoothly as possible so that these majestic animals will soon, quite literally, be the pride of Yorkshire.” Cheryl Williams, Director of Yorkshire Wildlife Park said, “This is a huge project for the Park and we are extremely grateful to for chartering a flight specifically for these magnificent creatures that desperately

Night hunting Peregrine falcon caught on camera in Derby

Video film from Derby Cathedral is a world first in showing night-hunting by peregrine falcons

January 2010. The Derby Cathedral Peregrine Project team have recorded what may be the first ever film showing conclusively that peregrine falcons use urban floodlighting to catch prey at night.

For some years, scientists and volunteers monitoring the spread of peregrine falcons into urban areas have found the remains of prey items which they believed must have been caught at night. Shy species like woodcock, quail, water rails and little grebes are often found in autumn and winter, but they rarely fly in daylight, preferring to take wing under the safety of darkness.

Late night woodcock supper

Reports and articles have been published about this phenomenon, but until now there has been no film footage to prove it conclusively. However, just before Christmas, a web camera installed high on the tower of Derby Cathedral captured film of a woodcock being brought back late at night. The bird had obviously just been caught in flight and can be seen struggling to get free on the top of a stone gargoyle situated in

Loch Lomond Aquarium staff thrilled at finding Nemo’s eggs

AQUARISTS at Loch Lomond Aquarium got a New Year’s Day surprise when they spotted some tiny clownfish eggs in their tank.

The fish had been showing signs of mating during the festive period but the tank was clear on Hogmanay.

Leigh Hotson, senior aquarist at the Balloch centre, said: “Two of the clownfish had been showing displays of mating by chasing each other in and out of one the corals, however this tank has been up and running for a while and nothing had ever come of it, so we were really surprised to see the little eggs.

“We don’t know at the moment if the eggs have been fertilised but we should know in the next 15 to 20 days.”

The petite clownfish have become popular in aquariums since the launch of the animated film Finding

G W Exotic Rescues 15 White Tigers From Dying Economy

The G.W. Exotic Animal Park located in Wynnewood Oklahoma is feeling the pressure of the dying economy in more ways than one. Not only is the amount of donations declining by the day, but the amount of animals needing to come in to the G. W. Exotic Animal Park is rising. The latest rescue of seven white tigers and 2 tabby tigers brings the total number of Tigers to 187 on the G.W. Exotic Animal Park facility.

Just in the last months the economy has shut down 4 facilities and has many more on the brink of extinction, leaving hundreds of animals left in the cold. The G.W. Exotic Animal Park is closed to accepting any more large cats at this time until funds can be raised to build more compounds to house large cats. In fact, the G.W. Exotic Animal Park is giving other facilities and private owners FREE meat in order to keep their cats well fed long enough to allow them to be moved to the GW Exotic Animal Park facility.

The "Text to Save a Tiger" program has been initiated in order to raise enough donations to bring in more of the exotics needing to be re-homed. "It is very easy." said Satrina, the office manager of G.W. "All you have to do is text "GWPARK" to 85944 and respond with yes when you get a confirmation text back, and this will donate $10.00 to the fundraising efforts which is simply billed to your phone bill."

Satrina goes on to state, "We hope to get the word out over the next month to receive our goal of 8000 texts in order to bring in the 23 more tigers and 60 primates that are on the waiting list

Whipsnade keeper is hurt after push from jumbo

Zoo says it was a minor incident

A Whipsnade Zoo keeper was taken to hospital after a mishap involving an elephant on New Year's Eve.

He was walking alongside the elephants in their enclosure when a female adult jumbo pushed him with her head.

The keeper was pushed against a nearby tree and suffered bruising to his arm.

In a statement, the zoo said that it was a minor incident.

Fellow keepers, who were there at the time, took action immediately, and the elephant was moved away.

An ambulance was called to the zoo as a precaution, just after 11.30am, and the keeper was taken to the Luton & Dunstable Hospital.

The statement went on: "The zoo, in line with the guidelines from the British Association of Zoos and Aquaria, moved

The giant Amazon arapaima fish is 'under threat'

The arapaima, a giant species of fish that lurks in the Amazon river, may be threatened by overfishing.

Studies reveal that errors in the classification of the species could mean that it is being pushed closer to the edge of extinction than thought.

The arapaima is the largest freshwater fish with scales in the world.

But there may actually be four species rather than one, say scientists, and a lack of research and management may allow some to be fished to extinction.

The threat to the future of these fish has been revealed in research conducted by Dr Leandro Castello of the Woods Hole Research Center in Falmouth, Massachusetts, US, and Professor Donald Stewart of the State University of New York in Syracuse, US.

They have reviewed what is known about populations of the arapaima, and conducted detailed investigations into the status of the fish in the wild.

Previously, it was thought there was one species of arapaima (Arapaima gigas), which also goes by the common names pirarucu or paiche

This perspective is based on a taxonomic review done over 160 years ago.

Adults grow to almost 3m in length and can weigh more than 200kg, making the fish the largest with scales living in freshwater anywhere in the world.

They are also air-breathers, coming to the surface every 5 to 15 minutes to gulp air, a behaviour

Rare griffon vulture sent to safari park

The forest department sent a Eurasian griffon vulture (gyps fulvus) to Bangabandhu Safari Park in Cox's Bazar yesterday for its conservation, says a press release.

Local people in cooperation with the local correspondent of the Prothom Alo Mahbubur Rahman rescued the injured vulture from Sonapur area of Noakhali on December 8.

On December 27, wildlife expert and forest conservator Dr Tapan Kumar Dey identified the rare bird as griffon vulture and asked the authorities to send it to the safari park for better treatment.

Veterinary surgeon Dr Malek took the

India launches Tigernet

A website launched this week by Mr Jairam Ramesh, Hon. Minister of State (Independent Charge), Ministry of Environment and Forests will give Tiger reserve directors and chief wildlife wardens in India the ability to key-in crucial information about Tiger deaths, poaching and seizures.

The Tigernet website, at, will be the first consolidated database on mortality and poaching related to Tigers and other protected species within Tiger reserves.

Gathering accurate information on such Tiger activities is crucial to assisting anti-poaching efforts.

The new system will allow enforcement officers to record information on Tiger mortalities, to monitor patterns of where poaching incidents are occurring and use this information to strengthen anti-poaching efforts.

TRAFFIC has helped develop the new website, in collaboration with the government's National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).

The information will be available in the public domain, while Field Directors and Chief Wildlife Wardens will be required to log in to key in information on Tiger-related issues.

The accurate reporting of Tiger deaths and the circumstances surrounding them has been a contentious issue in India, with conflicting information from official

Fatal attacks by exotic pets will continue unless Ont. takes action: activists

Fatal maulings like the one an Ontario man suffered when his 300-kilogram pet tiger attacked will happen "again and again" if the province fails to bring in a licensing system for exotic animals, activist groups said Monday.

Norman Buwalda was killed Sunday when he entered a cage to feed hisSiberian tiger. The 66-year-old kept the big cat on his property in Southwold, Ont., some 30 kilometres southwest of London.

The tragedy could have been prevented had the province brought in a ban on keeping of dangerous exotic pets when it revised the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act last year, said Melissa Matlow, programs officer for the World Society for the Protection of Animals.

While some municipalities have introduced bylaws prohibiting keeping exotic animals as pets that patchwork is inadequate and the province needs to step in and implement licensing, said Matlow.

"It should be restricted to only people who are keeping professional facilities and can ensure the animal's welfare and the public safety," she said, adding animals such as

Animal groups urge tougher laws after Ontario tiger owner killed

A leading rights group that works to protect the well-being of wild animals in Canada says that the mauling death of an Ontario man by his tiger is a wake-up call to governments at all levels to prevent people from owning exotic animals.

Rob Laidlaw, the executive director of Zoo Check Canada, said the death of Norman Buwalda on Sunday was the result of Ontario's weak laws that make it too easy for people to keep wild animals as pets without any oversight.

"We've had a litany of incidents and the government has washed its hands of it," Laidlaw said Monday.

This weekend's attack in Southwold township, near London, Ont., is not the first time a large cat has mauled somebody on Buwalda's property. The same tiger is believed to have attacked a 10-year-old boy in 2004, severely injuring him.

The attack prompted the township to pass a bylaw preventing the ownership of exotic animals, but Buwalda successfully fought the law in 2006, having his animals - reportedly two tigers, two lions and a cougar - grandfathered past the ruling.

Mayor James McIntyre said town council will again take up the cause and debate a new bylaw at its next meeting.

Barry Kent MacKay, the Canadian representative of Born Free USA, another animal rights group, said his organization has been warning communities for years to toughen laws.

"We warned these communities to pass these bylaws

National Zoo panda inseminated

The female panda at Washington's National Zoo was artificially inseminated during the weekend when she entered her once-a-year heat, officials said.

Mei Xian entered her 48-hour annual heat Saturday, but failed in attempts to mate with Tian Tian. Both pandas then were sedated and sperm from Tian Tian injected into Mei Xian, The Washington Post reported Monday.

Mei Xian and Tian Tian were to be placed in separate enclosures so veterinarians could monitor Mei Xian to see if she is pregnant. A panda's gestation can range from three to six months.

Via artificial insemination, the panda couple produced one cub, Tai Shan, in 2005 but subsequent breeding attempts failed. Tai Shan is to be sent to China early next

$15.6M zoo funding to prevent layoffs, exhibit closures

Although not resting in its coffers yet, Brookfied Zoo has been promised $15.6 million in state funding to prevent exhibit closures and dozens of layoffs.

The funding, part of a state-wide job creation program, will go toward repairs and upgrades at the zoo, and is intended to create 370 construction jobs. The work will likely take place over the course of six years.

Gov. Pat Quinn announced the funding at the zoo Sunday, Jan 10.

Stuart Strahl, the CEO and president of the Chicago Zoological Society, which manages Brookfield Zoo, said the zoo would be using the money to improve maintenance in many of its aging structures.

“With the funding, the elephant facility will be able to get a new roof,” Strahl said. “The HVAC system in the barn and in the children’s zoo will be replaced, and the stainless steel mesh in the snow leopard exhibit will be replaced. Four roofs total will be repaired in 2010, and another 14 are set to be repaired in 2011. We have about 80 structures in the park, and some of the roofs are original. We’ll also be replacing old boilers and

Polar bear shot dead after 200-mile swim

(An old story but included because it turned my stomach - Peter)

Apolar bear that swam more than 200 miles in near-freezing waters to reach Iceland was shot on arrival in case it posed a threat to humans.

The bear, thought to be the first to reach the country in at least 15 years, was killed after local police claimed it was a danger to humans, triggering an outcry from animal lovers. Police claimed it was not possible to sedate the bear.

The operation to kill the animal was captured on film.

The adult male, weighing 250kg, was presumed to have swum some 200 miles from Greenland, or from a distant chunk of Arctic ice, to Skagafjordur in northern Iceland.

"There was fog up in the hills and we took the decision to kill the bear before it could disappear into the fog," said the police spokesman Petur Bjornsson.

Iceland's environment minister, Thorunn Sveinbjarnardottir, gave the green light for police to shoot the bear because the correct tranquiliser would have taken 24 hours to be flown in, the Icelandic news channel reported.

Sveinbjarnardottir's account was disputed by the chief vet in the town of Blönduó, Egill Steingrímsson, who said he had the drugs necessary to immobilise the bear in the boot of his car. "If the

PETA pulls ads featuring Michelle Obama

Animal-rights group used first lady’s image without authorization

The animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said Tuesday it is pulling an ad campaign that used the likeness of first lady Michelle Obama without her permission.

At the same time, PETA is urging the White House to take a stand against another unauthorized use — the debut last week of the Ringling Bros. circus' newest performing elephant, "Baby Barack."

PETA said it used photos of Michelle Obama in an anti-fur campaign because the first lady does not wear fur. But they never received authorization to use her image.

Michael McGraw, a PETA spokesman, said the decision to pull the Michelle Obama ad campaign, which also featured Oprah Winfrey, Carrie Underwood and Tyra Banks, was "to show good faith."

In PETA's view, the use of the Obama name by the circus is far more disturbing. In a letter Tuesday to the president, PETA President Ingrid Newkirk urges the White House to demand a name change for Baby Barack.

"'Baby Barack' is not even a year old, but his curious and energetic childhood has been cut tragically short while Ringling attempts to profit from your popularity by putting him on the road to perform in the circus," Newkirk wrote.

Norfolk-based PETA says the circus elephants

Detroit Zoo helps in Texas animal rescue

TheDetroit Zoo is helping officials in Texas treat thousands of animals, many of them seriously ill, that were seized in what’s believed to be the largest animal rescue in U.S. history last month.

More than 27,000 animals were saved in a Dec. 15 raid of an Arlington, Texas, exotic-animal dealer, zoo spokeswoman Patricia Janeway said today.

If the animals won’t be returned to U.S. Global Exotics, the Detroit Zoo has offered to provide a home for some of them, including five wallabies, four sloths, three agoutis, two ring-tailed lemurs, two coatis, two kinkajous

Reid Park Zoo: 4th Worst?

Reid Park Zoo is ranked one of the worst zoos for elephants according to an animal welfare group. The group, "In Defense Of Animals", puts Tucson's zoo as fourth among the top ten worst zoos when it comes to taking care of elephants. It calls the zoo's third of an acre enclosure "measly". It says both elephants, Connie and Shaba have a history of foot disorders and that the foot disease is a common cause of death in captive elephants because the elephants do not have enough room to move around.

Zoo officials disagree. They say

Leefy, Weedy Sea Dragons In New Zoo Exhibit

The Minnesota Zoo has a new and very unusual exhibit of "Leefy" and "Weedy" sea dragons.

"We have two species in here, we have weedy sea dragons and leafy sea dragons," said Dan Peterson, of the Minnesota Zoo. "

The dragons are close relatives to seahorses, and you can find them in a new home inside Discovery Bay at the zoo.

"They come from southern Australia, from the colder waters," Peterson said. "Everybody thinks Australia is warm, the Great Barrier Reef area, but southern Australia is cooler waters, kind of like our Pacific Northwest."

The animals cost around $25,000, making them one of the more expensive animals the zoo has in the aquarium department, he said.

"Now, when you see the leefys. They're gonna

Honolulu ranked among top 10 worst zoos for elephants

The two largest land animals in all of Hawaii are at the center of a lifestyle dispute.

An animal welfare group says the elephants Mari and Vaigai should be removed from the Honolulu Zoo and sent to a wildlife sanctuary.

Cramped quarters, foot disease, and circus-style training are some of the allegations released on Tuesday that put the Honolulu Zoo on a list of top ten worst zoos for elephants.

On Tuesday night, the city fired back.

In a video a watchdog for zoos posted, Mari and Vaigai look like they're dancing, and entertaining visitors with tricks.

But an animal welfare group claims the zoo's two female elephants are suffering.

In Defense of Animals (IDA) says rocking and swaying is abnormal, neurotic behavior triggered by severe confinement.

"It is disappointing that a group like IDA would put something out that, to me, is not factual without at least

Tiger kills owner at rural home

Norm Buwalda was a big man who loved his big cats.

Now, township officials are trying to figure out what, if anything, they can do about the immense tiger that remains on the estate where it mauled the Southwold businessman to death Sunday.

As the animal kept close watch on passersby yesterday from its barn, Deputy Mayor Stan Lidster of Southwold Township, Ont., said its animal control bylaw applies to stray dogs, not 600-pound tigers.

"Mr. Buwalda felt his animals were his pets and, personally, I don't think a wild animal is a pet of any kind" and should instead be in its natural habitat or a zoo, Lidster said.

Even so, when a Superior Court decision four years ago quashed a 2004 bylaw banning private ownership of exotic animals, the township had no recourse but to accept it, he said.

In June 2004, one of Buwalda's tigers attacked a visiting 10-year-old Toronto boy -- an incident that propelled passage of a bylaw that had been in the works for more than a year beforehand.

It's believed Buwalda, 66, was attacked by the big cat, one of several he'd successfully fought for the right to keep, when he went into its cage to feed it Sunday afternoon.

People who knew Buwalda remembered him yesterday as an imposing presence, a strong-willed businessman who had a soft spot for his friends, for local junior hockey and especially for his big cats.

Lidster said Buwalda -- whose years-long battle with the township over the latter's effort to ban his tigers and lions was epic and unrelenting -- nevertheless was a loyal customer at Lidster's tire shop and never seemed to harbour any personal ill will.

"As far as I was concerned, he was a good guy, a good businessman," Lidster said.

He was a risk-taker with a big heart, said Strathroy-Caradoc Mayor Mel Veale, who for years owned a property beside Buwalda's Shedden-area home.

"He was a man who thought way beyond the box. He was his own man and he'll be really missed ... He lived on the edge and I respected him for it," Veale said.

Veale said Buwalda attended church and hockey games regularly, and employed dozens at his successful business, CanFab custom metal fabrication and welding in Strathroy.

He said Buwalda once introduced him to one of his big cats. Veale was nervous, but Buwalda "had that way about him that he commanded an animal's attention. He had absolutely no fear of them -- no question."

Veale said Buwalda had run-in with his animals, including one with a cougar that left his arm bloodied. Buwalda told Veale he "considered himself lucky" to have escaped with his life.

London lawyer Alan Patton represented Buwalda during the court case that eventually struck down Southwold Township council's exotic-animal bylaw, and said yesterday, "Mr. Buwalda took great care of his animals. This wasn't a roadside zoo."

Buwalda made sure the tigers and lions were kept in roomy cages and given frequent exercise.

"I landscaped for him and he had better cages than a lot of zoos," said Philip Pennings, who lives in Shedden.

"He treated those animals nicer than most people treat their cats or dogs."

Even one of Buwalda's biggest opponents concurred with that assessment yesterday, but with one major qualification.

"It was a well thought-out, double-gated, secure, zoo-quality enclosure," said neighbour David Rawson, "as long as it was closed,"

But the animals were often allowed to stroll the unfenced property, Rawson said. He said yesterday the township was too short-sighted to see that a bylaw with teeth would have kept everyone, including Buwalda, safe.

"It was all totally preventable," Rawson said. "We all knew it could happen again and, sadly to the shock of me and my neighbours, it has happened, and fatally to its owner."

Lidster said it's "totally false" to suggest the township is to blame. "Southwold Township council did all they could to put a bylaw in (place) and we did put a bylaw in and it was squashed by the courts."

Yesterday the tiger, estimated by police to weigh almost 660 pounds, gazed out from between the sturdy-looking bars of the loft area of its barn enclosure.

Occasionally it would lie down, appearing to be asleep, until it would gaze out at a vehicle passing by the property along the usually quiet rural road.

Police said the family requested privacy and a woman who answered the phone at the Buwalda home said she didn't want to comment.

The driver of a white truck that entered the property at midday asked reporters to leave. "We don't want anyone around here. Leave," the man said.

Lidster said the estate owns the tiger now. He believes it's the only large cat left on the property from several that once were there, although police suggested there may be another one there.

OPP Const. Troy Carlson said an autopsy on Buwalda was performed, but he didn't know the results. A funeral is set for Thursday.

Patton said, "The misconception by many is that these cats were roaming the property. They weren't -- they were confined unless he exercised them."

MP ready to welcome lions, Gujarat in no mood to allow relocation

Despite Gujarat being in no mood to allow shifting of any of its Asiatic lions, Madhya Pradesh government has spent over Rs14.53 crore to relocate 1,543 families in Kuno Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary being prepared as an alternative habitat for the king of the jungle.

At present, Asiatic lions are found only in Gir forests in Gujarat and the Centre had plans to relocate some of them to Kuno Sanctuary to repopulate the endangered species there.

There are around 800 lions in the Gir forests but experts feel that the concentration of the entire lion population at one place exposes it to the danger of being wiped out by disease or natural calamity.

However, the Narendra Modi government has categorically refused to part with the lions citing non-conducive environment such as threat from poachers and poor prey base in the Madhya Pradesh sanctuary spread over 344.686 square

Fallen on bad days

Everybody claims to be worried about the depleting population of tigers in our sanctuaries where they were supposed to flourish but are on the verge of extinction. Facts suggest that action taken on the ground remains insufficient and marred by bureaucratic procrastination.

This February 14, conservationists will converge at a global tiger meet that will be hosted by India. The Union Ministry of Environment and Forests will highlight measures being undertaken to save these big cats. The country has the distinction of harbouring almost half of the world’s tiger population, which, unfortunately, is rapidly declining because of the illicit international trade in animal parts. They are now said to number about 1,000 in India.The four-day Global Tiger Workshop, held in Kathmandu last October, reflects the worldwide concern for saving this endangered species, whose numbers are estimated to be a meagre 3,500 or less. In 2008, Mr Bivash Pandav of World Wildlife Fund was reported to have said that till five years ago, in 2002-2003, the estimate was around 5,500 to 6,000.

All the 14 tiger range countries were represented at the Kathmandu conference: India, Russia, China, Nepal, Bangladesh, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Bhutan, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar and North Korea. The 17-point recommendations included regional cooperation in tackling the problem; and strengthening laws against poaching. In view of the magnitude of the crisis, leaders of countries, where such trafficking is rampant, were to be especially sensitised to the issue, and the need to conserve tigers on an emergency basis. Nepal’s Forest and Soil Conservation Minister also expressed his seriousness about reviving the carnivore’s numbers. The Himalayan nation’s tigers are estimated to be a paltry 121. The Government now plans to double the number in the next 10 years.

It is a difficult task, given that Nepal happens to be a key conduit for the illegal trade in tiger parts, along with Tibet, China and some South-East Asian countries. India, of course, has been the hunting ground for poachers and suppliers. China and Tibet comprise two of the largest markets for pelts, bones, teeth and other parts and their derivatives. These are used for making apparel, in talismans, aphrodisiacs and in religious ceremonies. In Asia, trafficking in animal parts is said to have crossed $ 1 billion, being second to the arms trade. Kashmir, incidentally, figures prominently in this crime network, not only as a conduit but as a recipient of dirty money. Intelligence sources reveal that some of the funds derived from the illicit wildlife trade are deployed to feed terrorist activities. It is a vicious cycle, with crime engendering further crime.

Now with China having declared 2010 as year of the tiger, according to Chinese astrology, conservationists fear a spurt in tiger poaching. The year begins on February 14 and ends on February 2, 2011. Superstition and custom are expected to combine so as to make the coming months even more hazardous for the majestic creatures. While tiger farming is permitted in China, trade in tiger parts is banned in all countries. However, people have been lobbying with the Chinese Government — and these include owners of tiger farms — to legalise the trade in animal parts within China. They want the domestic tiger trade ban, imposed in 1993, to be lifted. The World Bank, on its part, wants tiger farming, anywhere, to end as it poses the threat of driving the endangered animals closer to extinction in the wild.

In the meantime, India, as the main refuge of the big cat, needs to act faster to stem its decline. The World Wildlife Fund now lists the tiger as most endangered in a list of 10 species. The other nine, in order of risk perception, are polar bear, Pacific walrus, magellanic penguin, leatherback turtle, bluefin tuna, mountain gorilla, monarch butterfly, Javan rhinoceros and giant panda. Latest disclosures are utterly shocking. While the last tiger census, using the camera trap method — considered more scientific than the inaccurate pugmark technique — placed their numbers at 1,411, thereby repudiating the earlier estimate of over 3,500 tigers, the current estimate is reported to be a dismal 1,000. The results of the new census will be known probably by early next year.

This is certainly discouraging as in the wake of the brouhaha over the Sariska scandal, when all tigers in this sanctuary were claimed by poachers, it was expected that the Ministry of Environment and Forests would clamp down on poaching and do everything possible to increase numbers. Instead, in a replication of the Sariska tragedy, the Panna reserve’s tigers all disappeared. This, despite the upgradation of Project Tiger into a statutory body, called the National Tiger Conservation Authority in September 2006, and setting up of the Wildlife Control Crime Bureau in June 2007. In a bid to deter poaching and traffi

US cult of greed is now a global environmental threat

The average American consumes more than his or her weight in products each day, fuelling a global culture of excess that is emerging as the biggest threat to the planet, according to a report published today. In its annual report, Worldwatch Institute says the cult of consumption and greed could wipe out any gains from government action on climate change or a shift to a clean energy economy.

Erik Assadourian, the project director who led a team of 35 behind the report, said: "Until we recognise that our environmental problems, from climate change to deforestation to species loss, are driven by unsustainable habits, we will not be able to solve the ecological crises that threaten to wash over civilisation."

The world's population is burning through the planet's resources at a reckless rate, the US thinktank said. In the last decade, consumption of goods and services rose 28% to $30.5tn (£18.8bn).

The consumer culture is no longer a mostly American habit but is spreading across the planet. Over the last 50 years, excess has been adopted as a symbol of success in developing countries from Brazil to India to China, the report said. China this week overtook the US as the world's top car market. It is already the biggest producer of greenhouse gas emissions.

Such trends were not a natural consequence of economic growth, the report said, but the result of deliberate efforts by businesses to win over consumers. Products such as the hamburger – dismissed as an unwholesome food for the poor at the beginning of the 20th century – and bottled water are now commonplace.

The average western family spends more on their pet than is spent by a human in Bangladesh.

The report did note encouraging signs of a shift away from the high spend culture. It said school meals programmes marked greater efforts to encourage healthier eating habits among children. The younger generation was also more aware of their impact on the environment.

There has to be a wholesale transformation of values and attitudes, the report said. At current rates of consumption, the world needs to erect 24 wind turbines an hour to produce enough energy to replace fossil fuel.

"We've seen some encouraging efforts to combat the world's climate crisis in the past few years," said Assadourian. "But making policy and technology changes while keeping cultures centred on consumerism and growth can only go so far.

"If we don't shift our very culture there will be new crises we have to face. Ultimately, consumerism is not going to

Wildlife Smuggling: Why Does Wildlife Crime Reporting Suck?

Did you read the story about the illegal trade in gorilla testicles? Have you seen the one about parrots poached in Brazil using glue? How about the news bulletin last week about the guy at LAX with Australian lizards strapped to his chest?

Generally there are two kinds of wildlife crime stories in the media: the weird news item showing a smuggler in flagrante (a stunned German tourist with a marmoset hidden in his beard) and the "in-depth" overseas report. I want to focus on the latter because too often these overseas reports kill endangered species.

After a description of a featured [mammal] [reptile] [bird] enjoying the best day of its life, chances are that any overseas report you've encountered went something like this:

Illegal trade in wildlife is a $10 billion a year industry, second only to trade in illegal drugs. Last summer [fall, winter, spring] I visited [foreign country] and found [mammal, reptile, bird] for sale. Here's a photo. Then I interviewed an NGO official who told me that [mammal, reptile, bird] is near extinction. So, I joined up with a ranger and went with him on patrol--notice

Global Hunting Industry Reflects Economy

If you can spare the $40,000 or more needed to go to Africa to shoot an elephant, then chances are you are in a recession-proof income bracket.

If you enjoy you hunting and fishing but have a tighter budget, or have not been immune to the tough economic times, then you may be scaling back on some of your regular trips.

That is the picture that emerged from the annual convention of the Dallas Safari Club during the weekend, which featured more than 1,000 exhibitors from around the world.

It is not your run-of-the-mill convention, with big guns on display as well as a menagerie of stuffed animal trophies including massive brown bears, rhinos and elephant heads. Some of the exhibitors were clad in camouflage or bright hunter's orange.

"The Big 5 stuff is selling," said Darren Baker of Coenraad Vermaak Safaris, referring to the fabled "Big 5" game mammals of Africa: elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard.

"But the cheaper hunts for plains game antelope are not doing as well," said Baker, whose South African-based operation takes clients on hunting safaris to places like Botswana, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

He said the average price for an elephant hunt was about $40,000 but they can cost much more.

Joe Klutsch, whose Katmai Guide Service offers hunting and angling excursions to Alaska, noted a similar trend.

"The high-end stuff is holding up and doing fine," he said, referring to moose or brown bear hunts. The latter he said can cost up to $25,000. But he said demand for cheaper hunts and sport fishing services were down.

He also said that because of the economic uncertainty, clients were far more reluctant than they have been in the past to sign up for trips one or two years down the line.

"People are writing checks for 2010 but unlike in the past people are not booking two years out. People are tentative because they don't know what the economy is going to do, they are uncertain," he said.

The economics of travel is also making some sportsmen who used to venture further afield stick closer to home.

Danny McGuire, who is in the restaurant business, was checking the displays but said he and many of his friends were scaling back on overseas trips in favor of hunting and fishing opportunities nearby.

"I'm still hunting and fishing but won't go to Argentina for a bird hunt now, I'll go to south Texas ... everyone here is looking for a deal," he said as he browsed the stalls.

One sector that seems to be benefiting from this state of affairs in Texas is the exotic game industry, which a 2007 study by Texas AgriLife Extension Service, which is linked to Texas A&M University, estimated to be worth $1.3 billion.

The study also found it to be the fastest growing sector of the state's farming industry.

The industry essentially revolves around the farming of exotic game such as kudu antelope from Africa which are then hunted on ranc

Chile apologizes for kidnapped human zoo exhibits

The Chilean government apologized on Tuesday for the treatment of five indigenous people, who were kidnapped in 1881 to be exhibited at human zoos in Europe.

The remains of the five Indians were repatriated from Europe on Tuesday.

At a ceremony to receive the remains, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said the Chilean government wanted to make an apology for the complicity of the authorities at that time, or at least for their neglect of such abuses.

"When celebrating the Bicentenary of the Independence it is inevitable to face the lights and shadows of our history -- the glories as well as the injustice," Bachelet said.

The remains returned on Tuesday are part of a total of 11 Kawesqar

Chester Zoo donates bronze elephant calf to prime city centre site

CHESTER city centre will be welcoming a heavyweight new arrival come the New Year.

Taking centre stage at a proposed site near Barclays Bank will be a bronze elephant calf, donated to the city by Chester Zoo.

The 1m tall elephant elephant – created by Hampshire-based sculptress Annette Yarrow (pictured) – mirrors the bronze elephant calf that resides near the main entrance of the 110-acre zoo.

The female calf was gifted by the zoo to the city to demonstrate the links between the award-winning attraction and Chester itself.

Alasdair McNee, Corporate Director for Chester Zoo, said: “The bronze elephant at our main entrance has been a huge draw for visitors young and old and is a welcoming focal point in the zoo, a place for photographs to

Zoo collects old spectacles to help African villagers

South Lakes Wild Animal Park, in conjunction with Furness Waste Consortium, has collected hundreds of old spectacles and out-of-date bandages for villagers in Niger.

Zoo boss David Gill will deliver the items to a clinic in Niger this year, as part of his annual trip to West Africa with the Wildlife Protection Foundation.

The clinic looks after three tribes which consists of 20,000 people in total.

The zoo already funds a project in Niger that protects wild giraffes and works with villagers.

A spokeswoman for the zoo said: “It is very important to help the villagers out.

“For many of the people out there, there is a lack of vitamin E, a lack of nutrition

From The Blog -

WARNING Graphic Video - Zoo Tiger Attack

Jane Goodall is far from finished

Video of Escaped Montenegro Hippo

Advanced Primate Training and Enrichment Workshop

Rare does NOT necessarily mean important or endangered

Important non invasive research in zoos

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





P. Craig Phillips, Jr, aquarist, author, and artist, died December 9, 2009, at Manor Care Nursing Home in Potomac, Maryland. Craig worked professionally with freshwater and saltwater animals for more than 40 years, his successful husbandry protocols and innovative display techniques being adopted by public aquaria worldwide. As writer and illustrator, Craig authored fact-filled, engaging books and articles on the lives and care of aquatic creatures, accompanied by distinctive and delightful stylized drawings.

Born in Buffalo, NY, Craig and moved with his family to St. Petersburg, Florida, when he was three. His father, a newspaper editor and publicist, nurtured Craig's early and insatiable interest in insects, reptiles and fish. While difficult to date, one might say his career in marine biology was decided when the elder Phillips took Craig to see his first public aquarium - the National Aquarium in Washington DC – at age 8. At age 11 Craig's vocation as a naturalist writer began with his own newspaper column on marine life, "Exploring Nature's Shores and Shoals."

Craig graduated from St. Petersburg High School in 1941 and in 1942 entered the Navy, serving as pharmacist's mate aboard the USS Audubon in the South Pacific theater. While stationed in the Philippines, in his spare time, he collected fish and reptiles.

Following his discharge from the Navy in 1946, Craig became assistant collector, and later assistant curator, at Marine Studios, Marineland, Florida -- the first oceanarium in the United States. At the same time he began his studies at the University of Miami, where he graduated in 1951 with a major in Biology and a minor in Art. It was here he met Fanny Lee, a fellow student, marine biologist and artist. They married in 1956.

Craig's professional writing became established during 1952-1954, while working at the University of Miami Marine Laboratory. This involved scientific and non-technical publications on marine science, addressing novel scientific phenomena in precise text, accompanied by his original drawings. Notable among these was the self-illustrated book, Sea Pests – Poisonous or Harmful Sea Life of Florida and the West Indies, co-authored with W. H. Brady.

In developing the Miami Seaquarium, on Virginia Key in Biscayne Bay, Florida, as one of the largest and most successful oceanariums in the United States, Craig's role as curator was critical. Beginning in 1954 during its design and construction stage, in a temporary laboratory, Craig monitored water quality. He was then promoted to assistant collector and finally to curator of live animals. Under his administration, the Seaquarium acquired and maintained an extraordinary array of marine life including sawfish, sea turtles, manatees, and the world-famous albino dolphin, Carolina Snowball. The displays and other attractions Craig designed were, significantly for public attractions of this sort, based on and respected the real world of these creatures.

Craig documented the joys and struggles of a working marine biologist like no one before (or after) him. His adventures collecting in Florida and nearby waters, and trials and tribulations caring for a wide variety of invertebrates, fishes, and reptiles, provided him with unique knowledge and broad insights on natural history. He shared this adventure and knowledge in the authoritative and charming book, The Captive Sea – Life Behind the Scenes of the Great Modern Oceanariums.

In 1959 Craig moved to Washington, DC, joining the United States Fish and Wildlife Service as curator at the National Aquarium. In 1962 he was assigned to planning and curating a new state-of-the- art fisheries center and national aquarium in Washington, as authorized by congress. This project involved his collaborating with architects, biologists, and aquarists throughout North America.

During this time, Craig also attended the University of Maryland, studying under the famous shark biologist, Dr. Eugenie Clark, receiving a Master of Science in Biology for his study of toadfishes of the Western Atlantic Ocean.

After some years of planning and designing for the new national aquarium -- including an exhibit that would follow a complete ecological cycle and an exhibit of a rain forest -- the project was discontinued when then-President Nixon took over its funding. Fortunately, many of the innovations developed for the abandoned Washington design were implemented when Craig, serving as consultant to a resurrected national aquarium plan in Baltimore, Maryland, adapted them for that facility.

In all, Craig worked at the Fish and Wildlife Service for 27 years: nine years as staff biologist, ten years as curator/planner of the National Fisheries Center and Aquarium, and eight years as curator and director of the National Aquarium. He retired from federal service in 1986.

While at the National Aquarium, Craig's artwork flourished, with him providing illustrations (many of which are still in circulation) for a wide variety of aquarium and fishery publications.

Craig was also a driving force behind "The Drum and Croaker," an irregular publication of the Aquarium Research Science Endeavor, which serves a dynamic community of public aquarists and aquarium scientists. From its premiere issue in 1958, when he reported on a pharmaceutical useful in treating a form of blindness in fish, until the 1970s, when his efforts for a new National Aquarium were described, Craig's work, art, and writings on fish (and humor) were featured. Twenty-first century issues of "The Drum and Croaker" still include examples of his artwork and references to his innovations as an aquarist.

In 1991, Craig collaborated with his former teacher and colleague, Eugenie Clark, creating watercolor illustrations for The Desert Beneath the Sea (authored with Ann McGovern), a book for young people about marine life, based on Clark's explorations in the Red Sea.

Throughout his life, Craig was an active zoological hobbyist. For many years, he and Fanny maintained a remarkable menagerie in their 100-year-old home in Silver Spring, Maryland. A 1977 newspaper article reported that their in-house zoo consisted of "25 pythons, boas, and other snakes; several thousand exotic cockroaches; 6 lizards; 16 tarantulas; and 11 opossums." Craig and Fanny eagerly welcomed friends to enjoy their collection, including hosting snake- and possum-themed get-togethers, until Fanny's illness and death in 2003.

During his following five-year residence in assisted living facilities, Craig continued to nurture a small collection of amphibians and reptiles. It was not until September, when Craig entered a nursing home, that he passed these last few specimens on to another enthusiast, completing a remarkable eight-decade career as a student of animal life.


Asian Waterbird Census

The Asian Waterbird Census (AWC) is a regional programme to promote public participation to monitor the distribution and populations of waterbirds and status of wetlands. The AWC covers the region of Asia, from Pakistan eastwards to Japan, Southeast Asia and Australasia. AWC runs parallel to other international census of waterbirds in Africa, Europe, West Asia and Neotropics under the umbrella of the International Waterbird Census (IWC).

Information from the AWC contributes to the identification and monitoring of wetlands of international and national importance. It also assists decision-makers in designating wetlands to the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran 1971), protecting threatened species and assessing values of wetlands. The data feeds into an international programme to maintain an overview of the population size, status and trends of waterbirds.

Ongoing effort

The census has been an ongoing effort since 1987. It is conducted by a large network of volunteers working through national coordinators. The AWC network is coordinated by Wetlands International. The Census has been annually organised during the second and third weeks of January. More information on the AWC can be found in the subpages of this webpage.

Read More


We are pleased to announce the 3rd Advanced Primate Training and Enrichment Workshop (“PTEW 2”), hosted by Utah’s Hogle Zoo.

This exciting 4 1/2-day workshop is designed for managers, veterinarians, supervisors, keepers, and care staff who are responsible for the care, management, and well-being of non-human primates in zoological, sanctuary or biomedical settings. The workshop builds on the skills and knowledge gained in the Primate Training and Enrichment Workshops, held many times in Bastrop , Texas , and will pursue advanced techniques and methodologies. The instructors have extensive and diverse experience working with many zoological, biomedical, and pharmaceutical facilities in the development and maintenance of comprehensive behavioral management programs for non-human primates. Classroom style instruction will be augmented with practical learning opportunities that include small group work to develop and evaluate behavioral management programs for animals at the host institutions.

One of the exercises will allow participants to work with the Hogle Zoo’s animals to progress through the steps of assessing behavioral issues with those particular animals, design appropriate behavioral management changes for the animals, and evaluate the impact of those changes. Emphasis will be placed on the strategies and tools integral to successful behavioral management including: behavioral assessment techniques, operant conditioning with emphasis on positive reinforcement training, environmental enrichment, staff management and training, facility design, and general operating practices to enhance behavioral management activities. Participants should expect to walk away from this workshop with a working knowledge of the necessary elements of behavioral management programs, and what is required to establish and sustain these programs.

NEW LOWER PRICE!!! The registration fee ($975) will include housing (double occupancy); all snacks and meals except two dinners, transportation between the hotel and the zoo (meeting site), workshop notebook and materials, commemorative t-shirt or tote bag, and all other relevant materials. Registration fees will be adjusted if you prefer a private hotel room or are local and do not need a hotel room.

Instructors: Mollie Bloomsmith, Yerkes National Primate Research Center

Gail Laule, Active Environments, Inc.

Steve Schapiro, UT MD Anderson Cancer Ctr., DVS

Margaret Whittaker, Active Environments, Inc.

For information, contact: Margaret Whittaker ( )

Active Environments ( )

Kimberly Davidson ( )

Margaret Whittaker

Animal Behavior Consultant

Active Environments


Phone: 832 428 9637


For more on Zoo Conferences, Meetings and Symposia click HERE


New mate for ugliest fish at Bristol Zoo Gardens

Bristol Zoo’s biggest and ugliest fish has found companionship with the arrival of a new mate.

Although the Zoo’s solitary giant gourami (Osphronemus goramy) lives in a huge tank with dozens of other tropical fish, she has not had a mate of her own for four years.

Nicknamed Gladys by Zoo keepers, the enormous fish is one of the ugliest yet most popular fish in the Zoo. But now a male giant gourami, called Gerry, has arrived as a match for Gladys.

The pair are now getting to know each other in their 20,000 litre Asian-themed tank in the Zoo’s aquarium.

Jonny Rudd, assistant curator of the aquarium at Bristol Zoo, said: “It’s great to have a new male giant gourami as a mate for Gladys. They are such charismatic fish - although some people think they are ugly – yet Gladys has always been one of the most popular fish in the aquarium.”

Giant gouramis can grow up to 70cm in length and can live for up to 25 years.

The pair can be distinguished as Gladys is a pale yellow colour, while Gerry is grey and white. Both are fully grown adults.

Jonny added: “Gladys seems to be responding well to the arrival of Gerry. It is still very early days but they are swimming around happily together. Gouramis are fantastic fish and they seem to respond to the public and follow them as they walk past their tank.”

Bristol Zoo’s aquarium is home to more than 70 species of fish, from a wide variety of tropical and temperate, freshwater and marine habitats. This includes species such as porcupine pufferfish, red-bellied piranha, clownfish, fly river turtles, endangered dragon fish and the critically endangered Potosi pupfish – which is extinct in the wild.

The aquarium has also recently seen the re-introduction of long snouted seahorses (Hippocampus reidi) on display in a specially created tropical marine tank. Seahorses are notoriously difficult to breed and it has taken years for the Zoo’s expert aquarists to create just the right rearing and breeding conditions behind the scenes, for the seahorses to thrive.

Bristol Zoo’s aquarium recently underwent a make-over aimed to alert visitors to the link between sustainable seafood choices and marine conservation, and to promote greater awareness of the sustainability challenges facing the world’s oceans.

The revamp includes a huge replica shark’s jaw, replica giant clams, a scale model of a fishing trawler, an interactive children’s play area with marine related puzzles and aquatic puppets, meet-the-keeper videos, an underwater themed mural, and displays about fish sustainability.

For more information about Bristol Zoo Gardens, visit the website at  or phone 0117 974 7300.


John Regan Associates
External funding for zoos, botanical gardens and aquaria


Celebrating Plants and the Planet:

It should be obvious by now that the goal of the stories at (NEWS/Botanical News), as well as my exhibit designs, is to make us say, "Wow! Nature is simply amazing."

January's stories do not disappoint:

· More on Acacias and ants: OK, so some acacia species make it comfy for ants to take up residence, but the trees also know how to manipulate their guests to keep them well behaved.

· Right under our very noses: carnivorous plants seem odd, alien, maybe even a little bit "wrong." Now researchers have realized that some of our most common garden flowers and vegetables are also carnivorous.

· Plants as cell phones: new experiments demonstrate that underground insects use plants to communicate with above ground insects.

· Separating the boys from the girls: when it comes to plants, fungi may hold an important key.

· Why would a plant hide: do plants use camouflage to avoid predators and yet still attract pollinators?

For all of us who like to understand why things are as they are, there is the question of the toucan's bill. One of last year's great stories answers that puzzle:

Please share these stories with associates, staff, docents and -- most importantly -- visitors!

Zoo Horticulture

Consulting & Design
Greening design teams since 1987


The Story of Stuff
This is quite long but please watch it through
No political message intended but it IS food for thought


February 2010

The HSBC India BirdRAces are slowly expanding and rising in popularity. For the current season, we have the following BirdRAces schedule in place for different parts of the country.

Specific announcements regarding individual cities will be made at a later date, with details on who to contact for registrations. Look forward to whole-hearted participation everywhere.

Learn More by Visiting HERE


6.00pm, 9 February 2010
 ZSL Communicating Science series.



Volume 28 Issue 6 (November/December 2009)

Special Issue: Special Issue on Zoo Animal Welfare

Issue Edited by Jason V. Watters, Nadja Wielebnowski


Introduction to the special issue on zoo animal welfare (p 501-506)

Jason V. Watters, Nadja Wielebnowski

Published Online: Nov 2 2009 1:56PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20287

Research Articles

Assessing animal welfare: different philosophies, different scientific approaches (p 507-518)

David Fraser

Published Online: May 11 2009 4:50PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20253

Programmatic approaches to assessing and improving animal welfare in zoos and aquariums (p 519-530)

Joseph C.E. Barber

Published Online: Jul 10 2009 11:42AM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20260

Measuring zoo animal welfare: theory and practice (p 531-544)

Sonya P. Hill, Donald M. Broom

Published Online: Oct 8 2009 8:50AM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20276

Animal-based welfare monitoring: using keeper ratings as an assessment tool (p 545-560)

Jessica C. Whitham, Nadja Wielebnowski

Published Online: Oct 22 2009 8:58AM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20281

GAPs in the study of zoo and wild animal welfare (p 561-573)

Vinícius D. Goulart, Pedro G. Azevedo, Joanna A. van de Schepop, Camila P. Teixeira, Luciana Barçante, Cristiano S. Azevedo, Robert J. Young

Published Online: Oct 8 2009 9:26AM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20285

There are big gaps in our knowledge, and thus approach, to zoo animal welfare: a case for evidence-based zoo animal management (p 574-588)

V. A. Melfi

Published Online: Oct 28 2009 1:06PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20288

A comparative approach to the study of Keeper-Animal Relationships in the zoo (p 589-608)

Kathy Carlstead

Published Online: Nov 2 2009 1:56PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20289

Toward a predictive theory for environmental enrichment (p 609-622)

Jason V. Watters

Published Online: Oct 14 2009 10:35AM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20284

The influence of captive adolescent male chimpanzees on wounding: management and welfare implications (p 623-634)

S. R. Ross, M. A. Bloomsmith, T. L. Bettinger, K. E. Wagner

Published Online: Mar 30 2009 1:06PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20243

Learning from nature: bottlenose dolphin care and husbandry (p 635-651)

Randall S. Wells

Published Online: May 11 2009 4:55PM

DOI: 10.1002/zoo.20252


Association of Zoos and Aquariums 2010 Mid Year Meeting



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.


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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
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Skype: peter.dickinson48

Mailing address:
Suite 201,
Gateway House,
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