Three nations move against hunting

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  January/February 2013:


SAN JOSE,  Costa Rica;  GABORONE,  Botswana;  LUSAKA,  Zambia––The national legislature of Costa Rica on December 10,  2012 finalized a national ban on sport hunting,  provisionally approved in October by a vote of 41-5. The hunting ban,  the first Costa Rican law passed by voter initiative,  was submitted to the legislature after more than 177,000 Costa Ricans signed petitions favoring it.  Read more

Animals Asia Foundation saves Vietnam Bear Rescue Centre and halts Zimbabwe/China baby elephant deal––in same week

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  January/February 2013:

HONG KONG,  HANOI,  HARARE––The Animals Asia Foundation on January 16,  2013 won a six-month battle against the ordered eviction of the Vietnam Bear Rescue Centre from the edge of Tam Dao National Park,  Vietnam––and just three days later won the cancellation of a controversial sale of baby elephants from Zimbabwe to China. Read more

Kenya hunting ban under fire

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2012: (Actually published on November 1,  2012.)


NAIROBI,  Kenya–The Kenyan cabinet on October 11,  2012 ratified plans to hold a national election on March 4,  2013,  and with that certain to grab the media spotlight,  ratified a new national wildlife policy,  leaving the African Network for Animal Welfare “very busy yet again battling machinations to introduce sport hunting through the back door,  mobilizing communities and civil society organizations at a very short notice,”  ANAW founder Josphat Ngonyo e-mailed to ANIMAL PEOPLE.

Read more

Rotich to head ANAW board

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  September 2012:

Nehemiah Rotich has been elected board president of the Nairobi-based Africa Network for Animal Welfare, ANAW founder Josphat Ngonyo announced on September 22, 2012.  Rotich has previously headed the Kenya Wildlife Service and East Africa Wildlife Society, and was a senior program officer for biodiversity and genetic resource issues with the United Nations Environment Program.  Ngonyo also announced the election of Ruth Mutheu Wamboa as board treasurer.  The previous ANAW board resigned en masse on July 16, 2012, citing conflicts with Ngonyo.  Ngonyo told ANIMAL PEOPLE that the major issues were unspecified conflicts of interest. Read more

Ivory sales boost elephant poaching–as predicted

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  April 2012:

    GENEVA,  JOHANNESBURG— Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species secretary-general John Scanlon on February 29, 2012 reportedly expressed “grave concern” that as many as 450 elephants were poached in Bouba Ndjida National Park,  northern Cameroon,  during the first 60 days of 2012.  Earlier,  the Washington D.C.-based Environmental Investigation Agency reported the poaching of as many as 50 elephants a month in the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania.
Elephant poaching appears to have accelerated following a record number of seizures of illegally trafficked elephant tusks, worldwide,  in 2011,  including 13 seizures of more than a metric ton of ivory,  up from six in 2010.  The tusks confiscated in 2011 came from at least 2,500 elephants.  “Some of the seized tusks came from old stockpiles,  the elephants having been killed years ago,” reported Michelle Faul of Associated Press.  But the leakage from presumably closely guarded ivory stockpiles indicated high-level corruption in the nations of origin.
Ivory poaching exploded across Africa after CITES in July 2008 authorized Botswana,  Namibia,  South Africa,  and Zimbabwe to sell a combined total of 119 metric tons of elephant ivory to China. Read more

Zimbabwe blames dogs for anthrax

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  April 2012:

    MASVINGO,  Zimbabwe-Masavingo police and security guards shot at least 20 dogs a day from mid-February to mid-March 2012 in a purported attempt to control anthrax,  the newspaper New Zimbabwe reported.
“John Chikomo,  the Zimbabwe National SPCA regional manager for Masvingo,  said they were against ‘indiscriminate shooting of stray dogs,’ but said they were powerless to stop the exercise,”  New Zimbabwe added.
“Masvingo is a chronically anthrax affected province,  but stray dog control has no part in anthrax control,”  responded Martin Hugh Jones,  resident anthrax expert for the International Society for Infectious Diseases’ ProMed online information service.  Jones has long urged Zimbabwe to escalate vaccinating livestock against anthrax. Read more

Nobel Prize winner Wangari Maathai, 71

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2011:


Wangari Maathai,  71,  winner of the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize,  died of cancer on September 24,  2011,  in Nairobi,  Kenya.

Maathai “won a scholarship to study biology at Mount St. Scholastica College in Atchison,  Kansas,  receiving a degree in 1964,” wrote New York Times obituarist Jeffrey Gettleman.  “She earned a master of science degree from the University of Pitts-burgh.  She went on to obtain a doctorate in veterinary anatomy at the University of Nairobi,  becoming the first woman in East or Central Africa to hold such a degree,”   Gettleman continued. Read more

Little noticed Operation Noah inspired Operation Gwamba

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2011:

Before there was Operation Gwamba,  documented by John Walsh and Robert Gannon in Time Is Short And The Water Rises,  there was Operation Noah,  a five-year rescue begun in 1958 by Rhodesian chief ranger Rupert Fothergill.

Fothergill,  46, began relocating animals from the Zambezi Valley to Matsudona National Park and other habitat near Lake Kariba in 1958,  after the Kariba Dam on the Zambezi River was closed. Fothergill was still at it in 1964,    to little outside notice, when Operation Gwamba began.

The Kariba Dam,  then the biggest in the world,  impounded water for 174 miles below Victoria Falls. Read more

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