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I remain committed to the work of GOOD zoos,
not DYSFUNCTIONAL zoos.
Owners in Showdown With PETA and the Feds Over Baby Tigers
One day in October,
Randy Stearns walked out to a Florida campfire, dressed in a fringed leather
top like a modern-day Davy Crockett. “Hello, friends, Randy the Tiger Man,” the
animal trainer greeted the camera, which was set between a teepee and totem pole
out in the woods near his family’s Dade City zoo.
“You can’t believe a
damn thing you see on the news,” the 34-year-old declared in the filmed
fireside chat posted on Facebook. “Just look at me. I’m the newest Charlie
Sheen. Every time you go on, there’s something on about us, the park…”
Then Stearns took
aim at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)—a constant topic in
The Tiger Man’s online videos. “Kind of like Rambo, they drew first blood,”
Stearns said. “We had to go out there, defend ourselves.”
Just two months
before, the wannabe Jack Hanna stood guard at the zoo’s gates with a holstered
weapon, joining supporters flaunting neon “PETA Kills” T-shirts. They were
protesting, and allegedly delaying, a court-ordered inspection of the private,
New scandal at zoo
where escaped lynx was shot and another was accidentally strangled as python
‘freezes to death’ and ‘underfed’ squirrel monkey also dies
It is now believed
two further animals, a Burmese python and a squirrel monkey, have died since Lilleth the lynx escaped in
Dean and Tracy
Tweedy took over the zoo in May 2017 after buying it from Jean and Alan Mumbray
The Mumbrays ran the
zoo, then called the Borth Animalarium for 17 years before retiring.
Their son, Mark Cook
told the Times the python 'froze to death' and the squirrel money 'died because
it wasn't being fed properly'.
polar bear Inuka celebrates its 27th birthday
A birthday cake made
from agar-agar topped with a salmon head made the perfect treat for Singapore
Zoo’s resident polar bear Inuka, which celebrated its 27th birthday on Tuesday
The bear, which is
in its 70s in human years, was presented with the novel cake to the delight of
around 400 visitors.
What next? Now
Brexit apparently ’threatens zoo breeding programmes‘
British zoos are
desperate for the government to make a deal with the EU on the issue
Kirsten Pullen, the
chief executive of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums
(Biaza), said animals with shorter life spans such as rare types of rodent
could be among the most vulnerable to a cliff-edge departure.
And she said the
Government‘s “lack of clarity” about its vision for is “very concerning” and
causing a lot of uncertainty for the sector.
Warning of the
dangers of no Brexit deal, Miss Pullen said: “It is hard to pinpoint a
particular species within our breeding programmes because all of them could
potentially be impacted if we suddenly can‘t deal on a European basis, or it‘s
much harder to deal on a European basis.”
This could result in
zoos having to “re-evaluate” what they can do, she said.
Currently there is
effectively free movement of zoo animals across the EU as all member countries
sign up to the same high standards of animal health and welfare.
Zoos often give
their animals to one another as part of coordinated breeding programmes, so
they can find a mate and draw on a bigger gene pool.
www.zoolex.org in December 2017
~°v°~ ~°v°~ ~°v°~ ~°v°~ ~°v°~
Hello ZooLex Friend,
We have worked for your enjoyment!
NEW EXHIBIT PRESENTATION
Asian Forest is a themed area for Asian primate species at Tokiwa Zoo in
Japan including a gibbon exhibit that we are pleased to present. Two
family groups of white-handed gibbons are managed on two islands that
are designed based on habitat surveys on Sumatra to offer the gibbon
species' typical three-dimensional brachiation opportunities.
We would like to thank Kenji Wako for preparing this presentation.
ANNUAL REVIEW 2017
With support of many volunteers around the world, we have been able to
publish 368 presentations (including translations) of 228 exhibits from
114 zoos in 47 countries and states in the ZooLex Gallery so far.
Promotion for ZooLex:
The biggest event for ZooLex was the very successful international zoo
design conference in Wroclaw, Poland, from 4th to 7th April. 250
participants from 39 countries enjoyed a programme with 42
presentations, pre- and post-conference tours to Jurapark, Opole Zoo and
Here is a review with photos, testimonials and the programme as well as
several of the excellent presentations. We upload them as they are sent,
while Wroclaw Zoo is preparing proceedings.
We also wish to thank all those who have taken their time to compile and
submit information for exhibit presentations.
The quality of ZooLex publications is ensured by our editorial board
whose members edit and comment on all newsletters, Gallery presentations
and papers prior to publication and dissemination.
We welcome Dr. Terry Maple, behavioral research scientist, professor
emeritus (Georgia Institute of Technology), zoo director emeritus and
Professor in Residence at Jacksonville Zoo as a ZooLex editor:
We wish to thank all our editors for their valuable support:
Barbara Brem, Stephen Butler, Jon Charles Coe, Lee Ehmke, Monika Fiby,
Jonas Homburg, Kimio Honda, Jonas Livet, Ivan Lozano Ortega, David
McGuire, Simon Tonge and Joris Verbruggen.
Exhibit presentations were translated from English to Spanish by Eduardo
Diaz Garcia and from German to English by Jonas Homburg.
Our free monthly newsletter is distributed to a steadily increasing
number of subscribers, whose addresses mostly indicate zoos. Thanks to
our correspondents it is translated and distributed in German, Spanish
and Russian, additionally to English.
We wish to thank our correspondents for this valuable support:
Ivan Lozano Ortega and Ivan Ezhov.
Cooperation with WAZA:
Links to the ZooLex Gallery are available on the website of the World
Association of Zoos and Aquariums at www.waza.org. 69 out of 114 zoos
presenting their exhibits in the ZooLex Gallery are WAZA members.
Sponsors are the only financial support for ZooLex. Thanks to these
sponsors, we can offer free access to high quality information on zoo
design. Companies and organizations listed in ZooLex Firms offer special
services and products to zoos and similar institutions.
We are counting a monthly average of 40,000 visits, 300,000 page views
and 1,200,000 hits to the ZooLex website:
Season's Greetings to all our supporters and readers and our best wishes
for the New Year!
We keep working on ZooLex ...
The ZooLex Zoo Design Organization is a non-profit organization
registered in Austria (ZVR-Zahl 933849053). ZooLex runs a professional
zoo design website and distributes this newsletter. More information and
petition to free elephants from Connecticut zoo
Bentivegna denied a petition seeking to free three elephants from the
Commerford Zoo Tuesday, rejecting the argument that the animals should be
granted legal personhood.
The Nonhuman Rights
Project filed the lawsuit in November, with the hopes of garnering a writ of
habeas corpus for three elephants from the Goshen zoo — Beulah, Karen and
group contended that, considering their cognitive abilities and sense of self,
the animals should be considered autonomous beings and thus legal persons who
cannot be detained under the law.
included an overview of research into the herbivores’ world view, pointing to a
series of abilities possessed by elephants, including the ability to plan,
communicate, have an awareness of self and of others, solve problems,
understand causation and engage in teaching to pass down knowledge, claiming
these as examples of their “complex cognitive abilities sufficient for common
law personhood and the common law right to bodily liberty, as a matter of
common law liberty, equality, or both under Connecticut common law.”
the group’s petition for a writ of habeas, writing that “the c
London Zoo lion
family is so inbred that two out three cubs are dying: Pride are all descended
from small group of 'founders' that shared the same grandparents
The lions at London
Zoo are part of a breeding programme in which 70 per cent of cubs are dying, a
study has found.
The lions are all
descended from a very small number of ‘founders’ brought over to Europe in the
But the ‘extremely
high degree of genetic similarity’ of the founders’ offspring is ‘detrimental’
to their health, according to researchers.
Nepal's last known
dancing bears rescued
have rescued the country's last known "dancing bears", officials said
on Sunday, ending the medieval tradition of abuse of the beasts for
The Himalayan nation
banned performing bears back in 1973 but the illegal practice- a traditional
occupation for some street performer communities, lingered on in parts of its
Police and animal
charities said they spent more than a year hunting the captors of the sloth
bears bef ..
A New Species of
Giant Octopus Has Been Hiding in Plain Sight
You wouldn’t think a
giant octopus could hide in plain sight for decades. But researchers have now
learned that the giant Pacific octopus (GPO)—the largest known octopus on
Earth, ranging from California to Alaska to Japan—is actually two species. Now
that we’ve been properly introduced to the new “frilled giant octopus,” we’ll
need to learn more about it to ensure its survival.
This discovery isn’t
a total surprise. Scientists have suspected for decades that giant Pacific
octopus might be an “umbrella name” covering more than one species. In 2012,
researchers from Alaska Pacific University and the US Geological Survey found a
genetically distinct group of GPOs in Prince William Sound. Unfortunately,
they’d collected only small snips of arm tissue for DNA analysis before
returning the octopuses to the wild, so they couldn’t find out whet
Zoo Review: London
and Chester Zoos
The spring of 2017
brought the first of two trips to Europe for me this year. My previous post
shared my experiences at two of Poland’s best known zoos. This post explores
two of England’s most beloved zoos, London and Chester Zoos.
Having a few
long-time friends from England, I’ve been lucky to spend quite a bit of time in
this beautiful country. I’ve visited the south west region several times
(visiting Paignton Zoo and Eden Project in the late 1990s), but as many times
as I have fallen in love with London, I had never once visited the famed
Zoological Society of London’s crown jewel, London Zoo. The experience of
visiting the London Zoo and the Chester Zoo back-to-back allowed for some stark
contrasts and very few, but very key, parallels indicating the strong trend of
Euro zoo evolution toward immersive storytelling.
Let’s begin in
breeding for endangered species
The Sabah Wildlife
Department, with the support from the Ministry of Natural Resources and
Environment, has initiated a programme on the application of advanced
reproductive technology in the conservation of endangered wildlife species in
Department Director Augustine Tuuga (pic) said the national significance
initiative under the 11th Malaysia Plan began in 2010.
appointed an non-government organisation, Borneo Rhino Alliance (Bora), to
assist us, and they now have two wildlife veterinarians, a senior laboratory
technician and two research students on their payroll, as well as their rhino
keepers," he said in a statement Wednesday.
Tuuga said this in
response to an article published recently in a news portal quoting two wildlife
experts based in Sabah who expressed their fears on the status of endangered
wildlife species, including Sumatran rhino, banteng, elephant, sun bear, orang-utan
and pangolin, in the State.
He said amongst
their partners in the
Is the UK’s only
female polar bear pregnant?
Because there is no
test to tell if a polar bear is pregnant, there is no way of knowing if all the
weight Victoria has been piling on is because she is about to give birth.
But this is the
crucial time when the patter of little polar bear paws is heard.
Last year Victoria –
the UK’s only female polar bear – put on a staggering 440 pounds plus in weight
only not to be pregnant.
But this time it is
hoped the extra weight may produce a little polar bear – or two.
Staff at the
Highland Wildlife Park at Kincraig have kept Victoria well-fed on fish and
vegetables and treating her as if she is about to give birth.
She is currently out
of public viewing because it is believed she is pregnant after mating with
Arktos – one of the two male polar bears at the zoo – last spring.
Polar bears usually
give birth to twins, with new-born cubs being around the same size and weight
as an adult guinea pig.
The last polar bear
cub born in the UK was in 1992 at Flamingo Land in Yorkshire.
And the last born in
Scotland was on November 15, 1991, when female Ohoto was the second cub to
Mercedes at Edinbu
Journal of Threatened Taxa
Vol 9, No 12 (2017)
The world’s last
male northern white rhinoceros has wandered alone, for almost a decade, in his
own enclosure in a game reserve sprawling 27 square miles along the
northwestern foothills of Mount Kenya.
The private pen in
Ol Pejeta Conservancy is a perk earned with age by the rhino, named Sudan. At
44 years old, he has lived longer than most of his species.
Rhinos have been
around for over 30 million years, outlasting multiple ice ages and ancient
giant predators. Then humans came along and, in a few centuries of hunting and
habitat loss, whittled them down to just a few thousand individuals. Of the
northern white species, only three are known to be alive today. Their survival
has rested on Sudan’s massive shoulders since October 2014, when the only other
fertile male, a fellow captive named Suni, died.
By April this year,
all attempts at getting Sudan to mate with one of the only two remaining
females, also in Ol Pejeta, had failed. The conservancy has turned to fellow
singles for help, using a profile of Sudan on the dating app Tinder with
information on how to donate toward the $9 million needed to research a
possible solution — but time is running out to develop methods to ensure these
giants remain on the face of the Earth.
On a recent chilly
morning in October, a park ranger named James Mwenda stepped gently into the
enclosure. Mwenda has worked as Sudan’s p
Borth zoo appeal
date set for dangerous animal ban hearing
A zoo which had two
of its lynx die within days of each other is to appeal against a ban stopping
it from keeping certain dangerous animals next month.
Borth Wild Animal
Kingdom, Ceredigion, lodged an appeal at Aberystwyth Justice Centre earlier
It has been closed
since the animals' deaths in October.
"We hope that
come the new year we can work closely with Ceredigion council to resolve any
outstanding issues and open the zoo again to the public," it said.
The ban was enforced
It is canned
killing, not hunting, that hampers conservation efforts
The three greatest
evils that have beset conservation in South Africa in recent times have been:
1. The canned
killing of game;
2. The intensive
breeding and manipulation of game to produce unnatural colour variants and
animals with exaggerated horn lengths; and
3. The rise in
prominence given to untried and untested views of animal rightists and
Ragunan Zoo Targets
150,000 Visitors Per day on End of Year Long Weekend
destinations are an option for residents to fill the year-end holiday season
throughout Christmas and New Year. Ragunan Wildlife Park, also known as Ragunan
Zoo, is still a favorite place for family recreation.
Ticket prices are
affordable for this capital city tourist destination, as visitors are charged
IDR4,000. So when there are holiday moments like Christmas today, many people
flocked to visit the zoo.
Head of Public Relations at Ragunan Zoo, said the zoo’s management targets
obtaining 150,000 visitors per day during this long holiday. For annual,
targets five million visitors.
Wahyudi admitted a
decrease in visitors whe
weather: Canadian zoo moves penguins indoors because of cold temperatures
dropped so low in Canada that Calgary Zoo has had to move its penguins indoors.
As an extreme-cold
warning was in effect for the country – temperatures hit a frosty -25C late
this week – zookeepers thought it safer to move the penguins to their indoor
manager of communications at Calgary Zoo told Global News that: “On cold days
William and the vile
tiger lie: Prince praised Laos for closing horrific big cat farms last year...
but they are booming and tourists can select live tigers for £340,000 each -
then feast on them
When the country at
the heart of Asia's brutal wildlife trade promised to shut down its tiger
farms, Prince William and conservationists worldwide hailed it as a watershed
moment in the battle to save the species.
personally congratulated officials from Laos on their landmark decision to
abolish the money-spinning farms where tigers are bred in pitiful conditions to
be slaughtered to feed Chinese buyers' hunger for their bones, meat, claws and
But more than a year
after the announcement, a Mail on Sunday investigation inside Laos has found
the tiger farms flourishing and the trade in tiger parts used as medicines and
potency treatments booming, with one expert describing it as 'out of control'.
This comes despite
millions of pounds in aid from countries including Britain to tackle the
country's criminal syndicates which
Review on Animal
Animal welfare is a
concept with both ethical and scientific dimensions, which consists of animal
positive and negative experiences. Important ‘negative experiences’ are pain
and frustration and important ‘positive experiences’ can be expressed in play, performance
of appetitive behavior, health and physiology. Welfare varies in a continuum
from very poor to very good and those kept in a good welfare can provide a
good/better service. In most cases, most countries are improving the treatment
of animals and improve the productivity as well as the economic values. It is
true that most proportions of developed country livestock owners realize as
animals are sensitive to beatings and mistreatment unlike that of developing
countries. They has formulated regular ways of awareness creation to the public
and are endorsed to the community what the minimal animal welfare standards to
be esteemed. The welfare issue in Africa is not well kept, hence poor
productivity and production is a common feature. The marketing places,
transporting, farming place, slaughtering houses, and areas such as feeding,
sheltering and watering places are the commonest ones where welfare deprived.
Most of the present works in
Zoo attacks and the
people who survive them
Zoo attacks in the
UK are thankfully rare occurrences. But occasional lapses in safety, horrific
though they are, have led to some remarkable survival stories. BBC News Online
The use of untrained
teenagers as animal keepers in British zoos would send shivers down the spine
of health and safety executives today.
But the practice was
remarkably common during the 20th Century when small zoos sprang up in towns
and cities across the country, as Richard McCormick can testify.
Richard, who now
lives in Harrogate but grew up in Coventry, got a job at the city's Whitley Zoo
in 1966, not long after leaving school.
"At first, I
looked after the parrots," he said. "Then, after a few weeks, they
gave me the elephant, the bears and Harry the hippo to look after."
Despite his rapid
introduction to the wor
Why the lynx effect
would be a boon for Scotland
During a difficult
year, the lynx provided a welcome fragment of good cheer. It seems the big cat
could be making a return to the wilds of Scotland after an absence of several
hundred years. There are many things to like about the reintroduction of a Champions
League predator to the Scottish countryside, not least of which is that it
would greatly inconvenience and outrage farming and agricultural types. Indeed,
Scotland’s farmers were so perturbed by reports of the lynx’s return that
several of them undertook a study trip to Norway for the purpose of building a
case against the lynx.
Norwegian harvesters warned their Scottish brethren that reintroduction of the
lynx would be an “absolute catastrophe” for Scotland’s sheep population. The
Norwegians claimed that 20,000 sheep were lost last year to the predations of the
lynx and unnamed others. Curiously, they couldn’t produce a specific number of
deceased sheep th
Zimbabwe; another ‘Elephant’ Disgrace
It’s supposed to be
a ‘new Zimbabwe’ isn’t it? You can’t have a new Zimbabwe when your tourism and
wildlife sectors continue to be shamed by the actions of your Parks Authority.
The current Wildlife
Minister (Oppah Muchinguri) has blindly followed the lead of your previous
Wildlife Minister (Saviour Kasukuwere; who has now been expelled from the
Ruling Party) with regard to this disreputable practice. It’s past time for
someone at the highest level – and that is the new President – to review this
policy, which has so many in the Wildlife World feeling so outraged with
Zimbabwe. I know first-hand that there are a lot of Parks Authority staff who
are also outraged by this ongoing practice. Hopefully now, in this ‘new
Zimbabwe’, they will be less afraid to make their own beliefs public.
We understand that
overall you have spent more dedicated time in the field monitoring elephant
families than anybody in Zimbabwe. From first hand knowledge and experience,
what would you like to tell President Mnangagwa?
I’ve said it all a
million times, even when I was still in Zimbabwe:
I saw for myself,
over these many dedicated years, just how intelligent and human-like these
animals are. I witne
New Meetings and Conferences updated Here
If you have anything to add then please email me at email@example.com
I will include it when I get a minute. You know it makes sense.
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After more than 49 years working in private, commercial and National zoos in the capacity of keeper, head keeper and curator Peter Dickinson started to travel. He sold house and all his possessions and hit the road. He has traveled extensively in Turkey, Southern India and much of South East Asia before settling in Thailand. In his travels he has visited well over 200 zoos and many more before 'hitting the road' and writes about these in his blog http://zoonewsdigest.blogspot.com/
or on Hubpages http://hubpages.com/profile/Peter+Dickinson
Peter earns his living as an independent international zoo consultant, critic and writer. Currently working as Curator of Penguins in Ski Dubai. United Arab Emirates. He describes himself as an itinerant zoo keeper, one time zoo inspector, a dreamer, a traveler, an introvert, a people watcher, a lover, a thinker, a cosmopolitan, a writer, a hedonist, an explorer, a pantheist, a gastronome, sometime fool, a good friend to some and a pain in the butt to others.
"These are the best days of my life"
Independent International Zoo Consultant
+971 50 4787 122 | firstname.lastname@example.org | Skype: peter.dickinson48
Independent International Zoo Consultant
+971 50 4787 122 | email@example.com | Skype: peter.dickinson48