Elbert County wild animal sanctuary euthanizes nearly a dozen of lions, tigers and bears

The Lion’s Gate Wild Animal Sanctuary near Denver, Colorado euthanized all eleven of its animals after the Elbert County commissioners denied the refuge’s repeated request to move the wild animals to an 80 acre plot of land south of Elizabeth. Instead the animals were all killed on April 20 citing recurring flooding on the property deemed the conditions unsafe.

According to the Denver Post, Commissioner Grant Thayer said a unanimous vote denying the special-use permit to move the sanctuary was made because “it was felt the community impact would best be served.” A previous vote to move the facility was denied in 2006. According to local politics,  housing wild animals was not appropriate in a area known for horses. Neighbors complained about lions roaring at night and the possibility of the wild animals escaping. Lion’s Gate owners, Joan Laub and Peter Winney, argued that the animals at the sanctuary were old and posed little risk. In addition they would erect a ten-foot high electrified fence. As to the lions roaring, the owners stated the two lions roared once a day and just for an insignificant amount of time. Still the special permit was denied and all of the animals were killed.

On Wednesday, the executive director of the Wildcat Sanctuary in Sandstone, Minnesota sent out a letter expressing “their hearts break knowing these were senseless deaths of animals that deserved so much more compassion.” The Denver Post reports Tammy Thies, executive director of the organization, stated they had accepted animals from Lion’s Gate in the past and euthanizing these animals this month was a “selfish move” that “had nothing to do with the welfare of the animals.”

(Photos of Elbert County euthanized wildlife via the Denver Post and Lion’s Gate Wild Animal Sanctuary)

Rest in peace; we all regret you had to die.

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Read about 2 dogs found decapitated in Colorado Two dogs found decapitated on train tracks




Public school employee said to have done ‘happy dance’ after running over goose on purpose

In Norwood, Massachusetts, an employee of the Sharon Public Schools faces animal cruelty charges after a witness reported the man doing a “happy dance” after intentionally using his car to chase, kill and beat a goose in Norwood.  Rory Marty has been charged with a motor vehicle offense, animal cruelty and drug possession; authorities found Viagra, however he had no prescription for the drug.

According to Fox News, the unnamed witness told authorities she saw a man and a woman in a silver vehicle driving directly towards two geese that had been drinking water from a puddle near Short Street. At first the woman thought the driver was just being a jerk, but then noticed the man turned his vehicle around and took aim at the geese again.

“…the vehicle stopped and paused and appeared to ‘line up’ the geese in order to hit them with the vehicle,” the report stated. “The vehicle flashed its lights and then drove directly at the geese.”

One of the geese had been hit by the car, and then the woman passenger got out of the car, picked up a stick and hit the goose; the man quickly followed. Once the goose was killed, the witness stated the couple did a “happy dance.”

“Maybe if he kills like this, he can kill anybody else,” the witness told Fox News.

The witness reported the vehicle’s license plate number to police and videoed the disturbing situation. Police tracked down the man, and said he was wearing the same shirt as the one in the video. Marty appeared in court on Thursday and has been released on personal recognizance; he is due back in court in June.

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Herd comes to rescue of young elephant when its trunk is grabbed by crocodile

An elephant herd took revenge on an attacking crocodile one week ago, while a young elephant was drinking water at a lake in Liwonde National Park in Malawi and a crocodile leaped out of the water and grabbed the elephant’s trunk. According to the eyewitness, Alexander Makanga, who recorded the entire frightening event, stated initially the others backed away as the young elephant shook his trunk frantically back and forth to get the reptile to release him.

And then came a member of the herd who delivered a powerful blow to the offending beast by charging at it and knocking it back to the ground.

 “I did not realize the severity of the situation until I had finished recording. Absolutely insane. This happened just few meters from the boat,” wrote Makanga online, who now lives in the United Kingdom and is a biomedical scientist.

According to Makanga’s Facebook page, the entire herd trumpeted all at once seemingly to signal the baby elephant was safe and there wasn’t anything else to see.

It may be the reptiles have been all meeting their formidable opponents lately and have been losing in the fight to kill large prey. Just last week a wild horse in Gainesville, Florida kicked the scales off of an alligator protecting his herd. As has been said for those keeping scores – animals – 2 and reptiles – 0.

Check out Alexander Makanga’s YouTube of the scary encounter: (Lucky baby elephant for sure!)





Feds halt use of cyanide traps that killed boy’s dog

It was just a month ago that a cyanide bomb, set out by someone with the Department of Agriculture, killed a Pocatello, Idaho, family’s dog. According to the Idaho State Journal, the deadly device has been long used  as “predator control,” but it instead killed a three-year-old Labrador retriever, and sickened a 14-year-old boy. On Monday, the USDA agency that places the traps, Wildlife Services, announced a moratorium on their use in Idaho.

The Washington Post reports Jason Suckow,  theWildlife Services’ Western regional director, stated the agency has “ceased all use of” and removed the devices from all private, state and federal land in Idaho. He added that Wildlife Services would provide organizations 30 days’ notice before resuming use of the devices in the state. The devices have been used to kill coyotes.

It was Theresa Mansfield’s child who encountered the deadly device;  the boy and his dog, Casey had not been far from home when a device that looked like a sprinkler head attracted the youngster’s attention.  As soon as he touched it, the device exploded, spewing powder that sickened him and poisoned his dog to death.

After the tragic incident, a petition was filed by Western Watersheds Organization, citing that Casey wasn’t the first dog killed by the device and that it had been placed on federal land within one-quarter mile of three homes. USDA records indicate more than 200 feral dogs, 22 pets and livestock have been killed by the bombs since 2008. And although the Department of Agriculture claims the bombs have killed more than 100,000 coyotes, they have also killed protected species such as Mexican gray wolves, grizzly bears and California condors.

And this isn’t the end of the use of these indiscriminate bombs. United States Representative Peter A. DeFazio (D-Ore) introduced a bill that would prohibit predator control methods that use sodium cyanide and Compound 1080 – the powders used in these traps now paid for by tax payers:

“It’s only a matter of time before they kill someone,” stated DeFazio.

Meanwhile the Mansfield family have launched their own petition demanding a federal ban – “Canyon’s Law.” So far the M-44 that killed Casey has left their son with headaches.

“The problem we have is that we have houses in every direction from where the device was placed,” stated Sheriff Detective Lt. Andy Thomas, who knows Casey was covered in the powder – in his eyes and on his arms and legs. The child could have died.

(Photo of cyanide trap via Bannock County Sheriff’s Office)

Read the previous story here.



Coyote killed family’s little dog

It’s a very sad day for a Durham, North Carolina family after a coyote killed their little dog by snatching her from their backyard. In a report by WralNews, dog owner Lamar Rowland can’t forget about the tragic death of their bonded Maltese named Lilly:

“It’s like a child being ripped out from under you,” Lamar stated. “Because our dogs were so attached to the family, and not being able to help. It was late at night. Going out trying to search was like a needle in a haystack. It’s been painful experiencing it,” Rowland said. “It’s hard to believe that in this day and time, we can’t find a way of controlling this wildlife.”

The family lives near a wooded area. Unfortunately, coyotes have been forced out of their own environments by urban development, and when area residents do not contain their trash and leave out food for wild animals, the predators roam in residential areas.  Even koi ponds, chickens and rabbits not securely protected by effective screening, can attract coyotes. Never feed coyotes – that is only an encouragement for the animals to come around.

What should you do if you encounter a coyote? Experts agree to harass them; stand up straight, yell at them, throw rocks at them and flail your arms to scare them away. Make sure your dogs are leashed; rarely will a coyote try to attack a dog accompanied by a human and never let a coyote get between you and your pet or a child. Never turn your back on a coyote, and notify government officials the moment you are safely away from the animal.

And one of the best pieces of advice – do not leave your dogs and cats out at night. Coyotes are also just trying to survive and nourish their young.

(Photo of coyote killed family dog via screenshot from WralNews)

Rest in peace Lilly.

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UPDATE: Heartbreaking: Rescuers not able to help whale trapped in ice

UPDATE on humpback whale trapped in the ice: Wayne Ledwell of the Whale Release and Strandings Group confirmed Monday afternoon that the whale had died.

A heartbreaking situation is being discussed with a rescue group who have described a whale trapped in the ice at Cook’s Cove near Old Pelican N.I. According to the Whale Release and Strandings’ Facebook page, volunteers and crew state the ice is just too thick to navigate with an icebreaker,and they would not be able to euthanize the suffering animal. On Saturday afternoon, the following news was reported:

“The Whale Release and Strandings crew was in Cook’s Cove today assessing the whale and the situation. The whale is entrapped in heavy Arctic pack ice and is in very shallow water. There is nothing that can be done to assist unless the wind changes and frees the ice in the cove. An icebreaker would not be able to navigate in there and we can’t euthanize the animal. Please respect the animal in the situation it has found itself and do not attempt to touch the animal but just to leave it.”

The humpback has been stranded in the icy waters off of Newfoundland since Friday and has been crying “like a baby.” Tragically he is jammed in and can barely move; the his tail has been bleeding. Rescuers are hoping the wind changes so local residents could possibly get in and free the whale. Tragically, he is becoming very weak, however on Sunday the water around him slightly rose. Rescuers can only hope for the best.

The Whale Release and Strandings is a non-profit organization that tends to the entrapments and strandings of marine animals, such as whales, turtles, and basking sharks.

Photos of humpback whale trapped courtesy of Whale Release and Strandings

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Read about Sierra who has been stuck in boarding for years.Stuck in boarding for years

Bear and lion the last 2 survivors of Mosul zoo almost left ravaged grounds to safety

In war torn Mosul in Iraq, the Montazah Almorour Zoo had once been home to a large number of animals, playgrounds and green spaces for tourists and residents. Tragically this week, even with the deaths of hundreds of innocent civilians,  the ISIS invasion the animals at the zoo to suffer egregious and agonizing deaths; many of the animals including a lioness, monkeys and rabbits  either starved to death or were killed by surrounding fire and shrapnel.

On Tuesday, representatives of Four Paws International headed to Mosul to rescue Lula and Simba – a bear and a lion; the only two animals still alive.  Dr. Amir Khalil, veterinarian and head of Four Paws was prepared stating:

“We have to act quickly, because Mosul is a dangerous crisis area.”

The volunteers had full support of the army who joined them on the way to the Mosul zoo and were on site as Lula and Simba were tranquilized for the trip. The animals were gently loaded on the truck and escorted out of the city. There everyone was stopped and detained as  border guards stopped them stating:

“We’re not sure who owns the animals, there was one owner and now there are many . . .” they said when asked about the military action to stop the animals at the border.

There are reports the animals have been left outside the zoo in their small travel cages. On the organization’s Facebook page, the mission leader Amir Khalil continues to negotiate for the lives of Lula and Simba. As there is a curfew in place overnight, no one has been able to check on the animals welfare or even if they have been fed.

“For us it’s clear – they have to be removed from Mosul to a safe and species appropriate place somewhere else,” stated Khalil.

(Photos of Mosul zoo bear and lion via Four Paws Facebook page)

Read previous report here.

Watch the desperate effort to save Lula and Simba. They are still not safe. Keep your fingers crossed. No doubt there are still many heroes in our world!


Giraffe cam: April ‘prepping’ for birth as calf is active

In the early Sunday morning bulletin, the Animal Adventure Park in Harpusville, located in upstate New York, announced more news about the impending birth. Will it be soon? Obviously April had no intentions of a St. Patrick’s Day birth: 

“Keepers have noted a calming down of the calf and April carrying everything a bit towards the rear. This is exactly what we want! Wax caps are still in place. Appetite remains strong.”

On Saturday, more than 70 million animal lovers thought for sure the baby would make her debut into the world. Her keeper Alyssa Swilley described the mom-to-be as eating everything in sight and “prepping for something.” The baby was said to have “mastered karate” and making as “much movement as a seasoned sportsman.”

Just in case, you’re just tuning into the April the giraffe’s pending motherhood extravaganza, (to humans although not likely to April) this will  be her fourth calf and her mate Oliver’s first calf. The park boasts some of the largest pens in the nation as far as room for the giraffes to stretch their legs, and the indoor housing section is meant for additional care and health of the animals as well as educational enrichment for the appreciation and knowledge of the species.

Try to imagine – moms all over the world – giraffes are pregnant for 15 months; at birth the calf will be nearly six foot tall and weigh in about 150 pounds upon delivery. April will be in charge of her own calf and if all goes as planned, the baby will be weaned after six to ten months – although that could take longer. Once the baby is born, there will be a contest to name her. Once the baby is fully weaned, she will be transferred to another facility and begin a new breeding program. Interbreeding is not successful nor ever recommended.

And one more fact for the day from the organization:

“The closest living relative of the giraffe is the okapi. Giraffe and Okapi are the only living members of the family Giraffidae. The family was once much larger, but all other members are now extinct. Preservation and conservation matters!”

For more information about the Animal Adventure Park, please click here.


Black swans cry as heartless man steals and stomps on their eggs

Two devastated black swans cried out in sorrow as a man described to be in his 20s  stole four of their eggs in a park located in eastern China. The man then deliberately stepped on one of the eggs when onlookers confronted him. Authorities continue to search for the man, who wore a face mask and a pink cap, who scaled the fence inside Yangzhou’s Slender West Lake and laughed at his disgusting deed and escaped without being spotted by security.Black swan cries 2

According to the South China Morning Post, the two black swans tried to defend their nest and poked at the man with their beaks. The man turned around and kicked the swans injuring one of the bird’s wing. Witnesses yelled at the man to leave the eggs alone, but instead of leaving, the jerk intentionally stomped on one of the eggs. As one swan sadly lowered his head to the ground in abject sadness, the female swan raised her neck towards the sky and cried.

An older man finally dragged the young man out of the area. The Slender West Lake’s management issued a statement saying they were “deeply angered and shocked” by the incident. Article Six of China’s Wildlife Protection Law protects swans, who are listed as protected and an endangered species. What the idiot culprit most likely didn’t know is that the eggs of a black swan are not edible, cannot be incubated and can burst when left in hot temperatures.

China’s social media exploded in outrage over the intentional act of cruelty and expressed their anger that more than 30 people had been standing around and didn’t do anything in time to save the eggs and protect the black swans:Black swan cries 3

“Do all the people around just watching it like a show? Or are they too busy to do live-stream and putting it online,” commented one reader on Weibo.

“Our country owes this man’s father a condom,” another person wrote.

The Yangzhou Police Department are investigating and are asking for the public’s help in finding the “punk.”

(Photos via Weibo)

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Poachers break into Paris zoo, shoot rhino and saw off its horn

A four-year-old male rhinoceros was found dead on Tuesday morning at the Parc Zoologique de Thoiry; he had been shot three times in the head by poachers, and his horn had been chopped off. This is believed to be the first incident of poaching from a zoo animal in Europe. A press release on the zoo’s Facebook page described the disturbing and heartbreaking discovery:

“In the night of Monday, 6 March, to Tuesday, 7 March 2017 of the perps broke into in the field of Thoiry (50 miles west of Paris) despite the security measures put in place and killed one of the three white rhino in order to seize the One of his horns. The whole staff is extremely shocked. A survey of gendarmerie investigation in the early hours of the morning. The direction of the domaine de thoiry’s gonna file a complaint.” (translation)Rhino killed at paris zoo 2

The white rhinoceros, named Vince, is believed to have been attacked by at least two poachers in a protected clearing where two other rhinos lived. Vince’s second horn had been partially hacked away as if the criminals ran out of time and had to run away. Zoo personnel and authorities believe the poachers had intended to kill the other rhinos also –  Bruno, 5, and Gracie 37; both animals are said to be safe.

According to the website for the Thoiry Zoo, Vince came from the Netherlands where he was born in 2012. In 2015, Bruno and Vince arrived at the zoo. There are about 21,000 white rhinos in the world  living in the wild; mainly in South Africa and Uganda, but the species is hugely under threat from poaching, reports the Evening Standard. The white rhino is particularly vulnerable, because it is generally very passive in nature and has poor eye-sight.

Rhino horns are highly prized in traditional Asian medicine, where they are ground into a fine powder or turned into tablets to be used as a treatment for a variety of diseases; especially as a sexual enhancing potent. Local authorities state rhino horns can bring up to $41,000 on the black market.

The outrage on social media about the killing of Vince has gone viral. Such comments as:

Alexandre Lemerle wrote: “We’re in France but people can still kill rhinos for their horns…”

Jerome Leheutre posted: “New proof of human greed! A rhinoceros has been slaughtered and his horn severed at Thoiry zoo.”

Morgane L. wrote: “A bunch of a******s broke into Thoiry and killed a rhino to cut his horn off. I’m losing faith in humanity…..”

Rest in peace Vince. We do hope you get some justice. This kind of cruelty is unforgivable.

(Photos of Vince the rhino shot by poachers via the Thoiry Zoo Facebook page)

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