Iowa man charged with trafficking bald eagle parts


 

Note: I have no words to describe this except ‘utterly shameful’, especially coming from Native American’s when inhumane acts that desecrate the sacred nature of life are the M.O. of the White Man….face palm, shake head.

MGN
By By JAMES NORD, AP, KCRG |

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — A man from Mount Vernon has been indicted by a federal grand jury in South Dakota with trafficking body parts of bald eagles.

Court documents say Jorge Pena is charged with violating multiple federal laws that protect the American Bald Eagle and the Golden Eagle.

Pena is one of fifteen involved in a Bald Eagle trafficking operation.

U.S. Attorney Randy Seiler said that officials expect “significant” additional federal charges in the case, which focused on trafficking of eagles and eagle parts and feathers for profit. Authorities said the case involves more than 100 eagles, a number that could climb as high as 250.

Seiler described one operation as basically a “chop-shop for eagles” in which eagle feathers were stuffed into garbage bags. He said it was clear that it was a moneymaking operation and that the feathers and eagle parts such as talons and beaks were treated as merchandise.

“There was no cultural sensitivity. There was no spirituality,” Seiler said. “There was no tradition in the manner in which these defendants handled these birds.”

He said the investigation involved confidential informants, a multi-state area and the purchase of regalia items such as ceremonial fans. A spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office said in an email that there are a variety of reasons why people buy eagle parts, and a collectors market plays a role.

Dan Rolince, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service assistant special agent in charge of law enforcement for the region, said that some of those accused used code words to avoid detection by describing the eagle and other bird parts for sale using the names of animals or even car parts. He said the eagles were primarily shot.

“At the end of this process, I have full confidence that it will be one of the largest cases of this nature we’ve ever worked,” he said.

Three Rapid City men charged in the case are involved with Buffalo Dreamers, which performs Native American dance programs. Owner Troy Fairbanks has been charged with conspiracy to commit wildlife trafficking and violations of the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, Migratory Bird Treaty Act and Lacey Act.

Fairbanks, 54, allegedly sold or traded eagle parts to an informant including a golden eagle head for $250, a trade involving about $5,400 of legal merchandise for eagle parts and selling two sets of eagle wings for $900. Rolince said that a whole eagle carcass would generally sell for between $1,000 and $1,200.

The indictment says Fairbanks in 2015 claimed he could acquire between 30 and 40 eagles by February 2016. Fairbanks also said in 2015 that he had 19 people in the Los Angeles area who wanted to buy “eagle feathers/parts” from him, according to the document.

It wasn’t immediately clear if Fairbanks has an attorney, and he didn’t immediately return an email from The Associated Press. A telephone number for Buffalo Dreamers went directly to voicemail.

According to another indictment, Juan Mesteth sold fans and eagle feathers to an informant. The document says Mesteth in 2015 discussed having connections in Wyoming who could get whole carcass eagles and would take the informant hunting for eagles. It wasn’t immediately clear if the 39-year-old Mesteth, of Pine Ridge, had an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

Those accused in the case include people from Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. Authorities didn’t immediately disclose how much the defendants are thought to have profited in the case, and Seiler said some of the 15 defendants are unconnected to each other.

 

http://www.kcrg.com/content/news/Iowa-man-charged-with-trafficking-bald-eagle-parts–420612723.html

People Want To Shoot Hibernating Bear Families — And The Government Just Voted To Let Them


“What the House did today should shock the conscience of every animal lover in America.”

Mother bears hibernating with their cubs and wolves raising pups in their dens may no longer be protected from a hunter’s rifle.

The lives of countless bear and wolf families are hanging in the balance today because the U.S. House of Representatives just voted to overturn a ban on cruel hunting tactics that previously protected animals on some of the most treasured wildlife refuges in America.

Grizzly bear family in AlaskaShutterstock

On 76 million acres of federal refuges in Alaska, hunters will be permitted to enter dens where vulnerable bear families are hibernating and kill them if the resolution becomes law. They will also be able to shoot entire wolf families raising young pups if the Senate and President agree with the vote.

“What the House did today should shock the conscience of every animal lover in America,” Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), said on Thursday. “If the Senate and President concur, we’ll see wolf families killed in their dens, bears chased down by planes or suffering for hours in barbaric steel-jawed traps or snares.”

The overturning of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) ban would also allow hunters to lure animals with food and shoot them at point-blank range.

Wolf pups playing near their denShutterstock

Even people in favor of hunting applauded the ban when it was issued. “Inhumane hunting methods have caused the overkilling of native Alaskan predators; this rule takes a balanced approach allowing for traditional, permit-based hunting,” then-Representative Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA) said last year after the cruel practices were banned.

Grizzly bear by a denShutterstock

Now it’s unclear why the push to overturn the ban was introduced in the first place, as a 2016 poll of Alaska voters showed that most agreed that those practices should be banned. Alaska’s Representative Don Young (R-AK), who has trapped animals in the past, introduced the measure, known as H.J. Resolution 69, anyway.

Congress voted 225 to 193 in favor of it on Thursday, some citing states’ rights as the reason for their vote in favor, despite the resolution being about federal lands.

Wolf pup emerging from denShutterstock

“Special interest groups are quietly working at the federal and state level to lay the groundwork for federally managed lands to be handed over wholesale to state or even private ownership,” Dan Ashe, then-FWS director, wrote last year in an op-ed. “Unfortunately, without the protections of federal law and the public engagement it ensures, this heritage is incredibly vulnerable.”

Shutterstock

The Dodo asked Rep. Young for a comment as to why he would push to allow these practices when so many voters oppose them. His office did not immediately respond.

There’s still time to save wolves and bears from cruelty: Contact your senators and ask them to vote against this resolution.

https://www.thedodo.com/us-house-alaska-bear-wolf-2268102226.html

A Seaside Sanctuary Will Soon House Retired Performance Orcas


Note: It is with great joy and relief that I  present this story to readers for our brothers and sisters in the Orca Clans; along with an apology to the countless Orca’s who sacrificed their freedom in Service to Humans. I am so very sorry for the ignorance and cruelty perpetrated upon your species by the human race in the name of greed. Much love to all cetaceans for your eternal love, patience and Divine Grace….Namaste {~A~}

In November 2015, the CEO of children’s toy company Munchkin, Steve Dunn, made SeaWorld an offer: Retire your orcas to a seaside sanctuary and we’ll foot the bill and pay for that sanctuary to be built. SeaWorld turned down the deal but Dunn stood by his commitment, and now that sanctuary is actually becoming a reality.

“Munchkin has long favored a natural coastal ocean sanctuary as an alternative solution to maintaining orcas in captivity, so we are eager to support The Whale Sanctuary Project‘s efforts on behalf of cetaceans retired from the entertainment industry,” said Dunn of the partnership with the U.S.-based nonprofit that will bring the project to fruition. “We are dedicated not only to these majestic mammals, but also to helping parents and children understand what they can do to help orcas and others live the rest of their lives happily and safely.”

The sanctuary will house whales and dolphins retired from aquariums and theme parks in a sectioned off area of the ocean. The animals would be able to live in as natural an environment as possible without being completely free since many have lived in captivity their whole lives and wouldn’t survive in the wild. An engineered structure that resembles nets will surround the space, giving animals a large area to move around “that dwarves even the largest tank in existence,” explains The Whale Sanctuary Project’s president Dr. Lori Marino, PhD.

“The deepest tank [at SeaWorld] is 35 feet deep,” she adds. “When you consider the size of orcas, it’s not much space. We want the animals to be able to dive deeper and know they can submerge and stay underwater if they want to and that’s something they’re being deprived of.”

Another priority for the animals is to be able to stay away from humans if they choose to. While the sanctuary will be open to the public, there will be no interactions with the animals except for medical purposes and absolutely no animal performances.

People will still be able to see the animals from a distance, however, and learn about them in an outreach facility that will use top of the line technology to entertain and educate through virtual reality and other immersion opportunities.

The sanctuary will also treat and rehabilitate injured marine animals with the possibility of releasing them back into the wild once recovered.

Unlike most retirees, the future residents of the sanctuary will not be moving south, though. The project is currently in the process of researching locations in the Maine and Nova Scotia areas on the East Coast and the Washington area on the West Coast since the animals need cold water to survive. Once a shortlist of possible locations has been identified, the team of scientists, clinicians, engineers, attorneys, business experts and marine animal advocates will move on to the next phase of actually visiting them in 2017. Then, once all permits and regulations have been acquired, work can actually start on building the sanctuary.

Marino estimates if everything goes as planned, the sanctuary will be completed in three to five years, but a project of this magnitude does not come cheap. The overall cost of it could be up to $20 million, says Marino, $1 million of which Munchkin has pledged to contribute. Once the sanctuary is up and running, it will rely on endowments, donations and public support to cover its costs.

Despite the now concrete plans for the building of the sanctuary, Marino says SeaWorld has still not reached out to talk about relocating its orcas but the door is open whenever they decide to do it.

“When they want to sit down and talk, we’re here.”

Photo Credit: ThinkStock

Animal Cruelty: Baby Elephant being tied up for being shipped out to Zoo


Note: I knew this would be painful to watch, so this video has been placed in cue for review since Monday. Now six days later, I sit here in tears writing this post, in shame and disgust with my fellow humans for their treatment of this precious life – a baby elephant, an animal with more sentience and intelligence than humans. And I weep for all the other beautiful nature creatures who have suffered and endured inhuman cruelty from humans. The only way to solve these horrible injustice’s without help from governing body’s is to BOYCOTT ZOO’S and CIRCUS’S, and any other business that profits at the expense of an animals well-being, in any manner.

Also, we need BOYCOTT campaigns for SAFARI type expeditions that endanger wildlife for viewing pleasure. It’s time to leave nature alone and away from human influence. Just this week another famous Lion in Africa was shot and killed in Kenya by a ranger when he escaped the reserve after a group of men taking photo’s started throwing rocks at him. (bite my tongue)

Why didn’t the ranger have tranquilizers, isn’t that standard equipment for a wildlife reserve in Africa?

The level of ignorance, stupidity and carelessness exhibited by some humans is simply beyond belief. We are so much better than this….

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Snatched from her mother as a baby, this elephant will endure a lifetime of pain and suffering.

This footage is part of the professionally-shot broadcast stock footage archive of Wilderness Films India Ltd., the largest collection of HD imagery from South Asia. The collection comprises of 100, 000+ hours of high quality broadcast imagery, mostly shot on HDCAM / SR 1080i High Definition, Alexa, SR, XDCAM and 4K. Write to us for licensing this footage on a broadcast format, for use in your production! We are happy to be commissioned to film for you or else provide you with broadcast crewing and production solutions across South Asia. We pride ourselves in bringing the best of India and South Asia to the world…

Please subscribe to our channel wildfilmsindia on Youtube for a steady stream of videos from across India. Also, visit and enjoy your journey across India at http://www.clipahoy.com , India’s first video-based social networking experience!

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Nobel Laureate Backs a New Report Which Describes Animal Experiments as Morally ‘Unthinkable’


 
More than a hundred and fifty academics, intellectuals, and writers, including Nobel Laureate J. M. Coetzee, have backed a new report calling for the de-normalisation of animal experimentation.

By BUAV / buav.org

Titled ‘Normalising the Unthinkable’, the report is the result of a working party of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics.

Other signatories to the report include the Rt Revd John Pritchard, former Bishop of Oxford, Professor Keith Ward of Oxford University, Professor Stanley Hauerwas of Duke Divinity School, and Professor Conor Gearty of the London School of Economics.

The report finds that ‘The deliberate and routine abuse of innocent, sentient animals involving harm, pain, suffering, stressful confinement, manipulation, trade, and death should be unthinkable. Yet animal experimentation is just that: the ‘normalisation of the unthinkable’.  ‘It is estimated that 115.3 million animals are used in experiments worldwide per annum. In terms of harm, pain, suffering, and death, this constitutes one of the major moral issues of our time.’

Comprised of 20 leading ethicists and scientists, the working party concluded that animal experiments are both morally and scientifically flawed. The report of more than 50,000 words is probably the most comprehensive critique of animal experiments ever published.

Commissioned by the BUAV and Cruelty Free International as an independent ethical review, members of the working party are keen to point out that the BUAV in no way influenced its conclusions.

‘The moral arguments in favour of animal testing really don’t hold water’ says Professor Andrew Linzey, co-editor of the report and a theologian at Oxford University.  ‘We have looked at the central arguments in official reports and found them wanting.  If any of them were morally valid, they would also justify experiments on human beings.’

The report concludes that the ‘normalisation’ of animal experiments:

  • flies in the face of what is now known about the extent and range of how animals can be harmed. The issue of the complexity of animal awareness, especially animal sentience (the capacity to experience pain and pleasure), cannot be ignored. Unlike our forebears, we now know, as reasonably as we can know of humans, that animals (notably, mammals, birds, and reptiles) experience not only pain, but also shock, fear, foreboding, trauma, anxiety, stress, distress, anticipation, and terror.
  • is based on the discredited idea that animals are just tools for human use, means to human ends, fungible items, and commodities who can be treated and dispensed with as humans think fit.
  • is challenged by new moral thinking which holds that sentient beings are not just things, objects, machines, or tools, but have value in themselves and deserve respect.
  • is augmented by a range of regulations and controls, which in reality do very little to protect animals and indeed often do the reverse.
  • is justified by the oft-repeated assertion that human interest requires such experiments, whereas it has to be questioned whether humans are ever benefited by the abuse of animals.

BUAV and Cruelty Free International CEO, Michelle Thew, said‘We greatly welcome this new report, which should spur on new ethical thinking about animals and question some of the lazy assumptions about how animal research benefits humans. This independent report is a milestone in ethical thinking about animals and puts the ethics of animal research back on the agenda.’

Academics are invited to debate the report at a special Summer School on the Ethics of Using Animals in Research at Oxford on 26-29 July 2015. Details about the Summer School can be found here.

The full report can be found here.

The executive summary can be found here.

The full list of signatories can be found here.

Image: Fu Yongiun / WENN.com

http://www.filmsforaction.org/articles/nobel-laureate-j-m-coetzee-backs-a-new-report-which-describes-animal-experiments-as-morally-unthinkable/

End the Sacrifice: Gadhimai Festival


Every five years, the month-long Gadhimai festival is held in southern Nepal to honor the Hindu goddess of power, Gadhimai. Approximately 500,000 animals are brutally slaughtered, making this the world’s largest sacrifice of animals.

Help stop this ruthless massacre by signing our petition at EndTheSacrifice.org

Warning: Disturbing Content

Appalling images from lamb farms and slaughterhouses in Italy…BOYCOTT LAMB!


Absolutely shameful Italy!!

A new research by animal equality shows appalling images from lamb farms and slaughterhouses in Italy. The research team by animal equality has documented the events on a total of four farms.

Our investigators managed to take shocking pictures of the local conditions. Be seen, among other things, how slaughtered lambs without any prior stunning. The video continues to show the way of the young animals to the slaughter – an extremely stressful and painful way, due to the brutality and suddenness of forcing the frightened animals in the slaughterhouse. Many of them suffer in broken bones and other injuries.

The research has been already taken up by numerous international media and in Italy thousands of people committed no lamb to eat more or even entirely to replace animal products with animal-friendly alternatives.

Photo gallery of appalling, barbaric conditions: https://www.flickr.com/photos/animalequalityde/sets/72157643989820594/

More information: http://bit.ly/1qDfZQS (Translated by Bing)

Animal Defenders International THE SHOCKING TRUTH ABOUT AMERICAN CIRCUSES


THE SHOCKING TRUTH ABOUT AMERICAN CIRCUSES: Blink and you'll miss it, but this trainer is about to electric shock an elephant in front of members of the public, including children, and they won't even know it.  It's a circus performance for Jordan World Circus – who also provides the act to Shrine Circuses – and the presenter has slipped a stun gun out of his pocket and will give the elephant a quick electric shock to show who is boss.  If the circus can get away with this in public, what do you think they are getting away with behind the scenes?  HELP ADI END THE SUFFERING NOW.

DON'T DELAY WRITE TO YOUR REPRESENTATIVE AND ASK THEM TO SPONSOR THE TRAVELING EXOTIC ANIMAL PROTECTION ACT http://bit.ly/1nRQGta

Help ADI be their voice http://bit.ly/TEAPAdonate
Blink and you’ll miss it, but this trainer is about to electric shock an elephant in front of members of the public, including children, and they won’t even know it. It’s a circus performance for Jordan World Circus – who also provides the act to Shrine Circuses – and the presenter has slipped a stun gun out of his pocket and will give the elephant a quick electric shock to show who is boss. If the circus can get away with this in public, what do you think they are getting away with behind the scenes? HELP ADI END THE SUFFERING NOW.

DON’T DELAY WRITE TO YOUR REPRESENTATIVE AND ASK THEM TO SPONSOR THE TRAVELING EXOTIC ANIMAL PROTECTION ACT http://bit.ly/1nRQGta

Help ADI be their voice http://bit.ly/TEAPAdonate

THE MISERY BEHIND ‘BACON’ WEEK ~ SHARE FREELY


THE MISERY BEHIND 'BACON' WEEK

As more and more people are learning about the nightmarish lives endured by pigs on Australian farms, the 'pork' industry has launched a self declared 'Bacon Week'. 

We will not let them get away with this attempt to celebrate a product that causes untold suffering. Pigs are intelligent, complex beings and whether they are confined in intensive piggeries or on free range farms, they endure torment that few of us could imagine. 

In response to 'Bacon Week' we will be posting about the terrible reality of pig farming in Australia over the next five days. Please SHARE if you want to listen to your heart instead of your stomach, and say NO to 'bacon'.

Follow Animal Liberation Victoria

As more and more people are learning about the nightmarish lives endured by pigs on Australian farms, the ‘pork’ industry has launched a self declared ‘Bacon Week’.

We will not let them get away with this attempt to celebrate a product that causes untold suffering. Pigs are intelligent, complex beings and whether they are confined in intensive piggeries or on free range farms, they endure torment that few of us could imagine.

In response to ‘Bacon Week’ we will be posting about the terrible reality of pig farming in Australia over the next five days. Please SHARE if you want to listen to your heart instead of your stomach, and say NO to ‘bacon’.

Follow Animal Liberation Victoria

CRUELTY EXPOSED IN GAITED HORSE WORLD ~ TAKE ACTION NOW!!


Please take a few moments of your time to help these abused horses by contacting your congress members and signing the petitions below. These sick, inhuman people deserve the same cruelty they inflict upon these poor innocent DEFENSELESS animals ~ they should have chemicals applied to their ankles then wrapped up tight until they’re nice and blistered. Then when they’re in so much pain they can’t stand on their feet, we’ll beat them and drag them across the floor by their heads until they stand. That’s what they deserve…over and over and over again for a life time. These people aren’t worthy of the air they breath.

As a child my mother took me to these shows, I had no idea the horses  were treated so badly to make them step so high and don’t believe she did either. If the audiences that came to these shows had any idea what goes on these trainers would be hung, please share this to help raise awareness to this HORRIBLY INHUMANE practice and to put these people in jail where they belong.

Cruelty Exposed in Gaited Horse World

A recent undercover investigation by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) at a training barn for Tennessee Walking horses exposed the cruelty these horses endure to achieve an unnatural high stepping gait otherwise known as the “Big Lick.”

According to the HSUS, the investigation led to criminal charges for felony conspiracy to violate the Horse Protection Act (HPA), in addition to violations of the Tennessee Cruelty to Animals Statute against nationally recognized trainer Jackie McConnell, who has a history of horse abuse, and his associates, Jeff Dockery, John Mays and Joseph R. Abernathy after they were caught “soring” horses.

Soring of all breeds has been banned for decades under the HPA, but the technique is still used by unethical trainers to get that high step. The practice involves methods that include putting caustic substances, such as mustard oil, Croton oil mixed with kerosene or diesel oil, on the sensitive skin around their hooves at their pasterns, bulbs of their heels and coronary bands to cause blistering, burning and irritation and wrapping them in plastic wrap to make sure its absorbed, which makes them quickly lift their legs to avoid pain.

Chains may also be used to add to the pain because chemically burning the crap out of their legs apparently just doesn’t quite do the trick by itself. Some people also use Salicylic Acid to cover the visible damage that’s been done. After all of that, some are trained not to react to having their legs touched, which is what is happening to the horse in the video that is being beaten over the head.

Pads, or stacks, may also be used on the front hooves to raise a horse’s forehand to add even more animation, but this causes unbalanced feet, among other problems. Objects may also be placed between the pad and the hoof to cause even more pain and discomfort.

To help enforce regulations under the HPA, APHIS developed a program that appointed Designated Qualified Persons (DQPs) to inspect horses at shows before every class and disqualify horses who show signs of soring. DQPs may be vets, farriers, trainers or other knowledgeable individuals in the industry. This leads to an incredible conflict of interest since they may be Big Lick supporters with industry friends, which leaves the Tennessee Walking horse world to essentially self-regulate. However, larger shows are usually overseen by veterinary medical officers (VMOs), inspectors or investigators.

Unfortunately, the HPA doesn’t cover what happens at home, it only protects horses during transportation and at shows.

In 2006, the World Grand Champion Class was cancelled at the annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration for the first time in its 68 year history after seven of the 10 horses were disqualified because they couldn’t pass a USDA inspection. A total of 103 violations of the HPA were found at the show that year.

But even the number of violations isn’t always accurate. Some people just leave before getting caught. In 2008, one of the biggest shows in Kentucky practically shut down after USDA inspectors showed up, which left 40 horses who were shown when there were typically between 500 to 550. Talk about clearing a room.

Since the HSUS investigation was aired on CBS, at least one sponsor of the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, Pepsi, has withdrawn as a sponsor. McConnell is due in court on Tuesday and will reportedly be pleading guilty to one count with all other charges being dismissed. The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association board has also pulled McConnell’s credentials.

The really sad thing here is how surprised all of the industry organizations are pretending to be about soring. They may claim they don’t support it, but if they really didn’t, standards for the breed would not have developed into what they are now, abused horses wouldn’t place at shows, trainers would be getting fired left and right and Tennessee Walkers would be showing off their natural gaits, instead of being admired for hideous incredibly exaggerated, seizure-like movements that are the result of ongoing torture.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/352/543/565/end-torture-of-tennessee-walking-horses-enforce-the-horse-protection-act/

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/651/828/796/tell-the-feds-to-clean-up-the-horse-racing-industry/

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/23/South-Africa-Stop-Hackney-Stud-Abuse/

Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/cruelty-exposed-in-gaited-horse-world.html#ixzz1vRXCqNQS

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