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S.Africa's Kruger Park still a magnet for rhino poachers

A rhino is kept in an enclosure at the Kruger national park By Ed Stoddard PRETORIA (Reuters) - The poaching of rhinos has risen in South Africa's Kruger National Park this year but is on the decline elsewhere in the country, Environment Minister Edna Molewa said on Sunday. The Kruger Park, South Africa's main tourist draw, is on the frontlines of a surge in rhino poaching for the animal's horn to meet demand in countries such as Vietnam, where it is a coveted ingredient in traditional medicine. A record 1,215 rhino were poached in South Africa last year, almost triple the 448 killed in 2011.


South Africa's Kruger Park still a magnet for rhino poachers

A rhino is kept in an enclosure at the Kruger national park By Ed Stoddard PRETORIA (Reuters) - The poaching of rhinos has risen in South Africa's Kruger National Park this year but is on the decline elsewhere in the country, Environment Minister Edna Molewa said on Sunday. The Kruger Park, South Africa's main tourist draw, is on the frontlines of a surge in rhino poaching for the animal's horn to meet demand in countries such as Vietnam, where it is a coveted ingredient in traditional medicine. A record 1,215 rhino were poached in South Africa last year, almost triple the 448 killed in 2011.


Tribe in Idaho to draft recovery plan for wild reindeer

Handout photo of woodland caribou in the Selkirk mountain range in Canada By Laura Zuckerman SALMON, Idaho (Reuters) - A Native American tribe in Idaho has been assigned the task of drafting a plan for saving a tiny band of wild reindeer from extinction in a far corner of the northern Rockies straddling the U.S.-Canadian border, federal wildlife officials said on Friday. A population of woodland caribou now numbering just 14 in the remote Selkirk Mountains has been at the center of a protracted fight among conservationists, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and groups promoting recreational use and logging in the creatures' alpine habitat. First listed as an endangered species in 1984, they are the only wild reindeer of their kind left in the Lower 48 states, though they are close cousins of caribou that roam northern Alaska in large herds.


Weigh-in day for animals at London Zoo

Animals of all sizes stepped on the scales on Wednesday at London Zoo's annual weigh-in. The reported 17,000 animals living at the zoo in the British capital must be weighed to make sure they are healthy and growing at the right speed. The information is then shared with zoos around the world to compare statistics.

It's a boy! Washington zoo gives details on new panda cub

A smaller of two panda cubs born to Giant Panda Mei Xiang August 22 is fed from a bottle at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington The U.S. National Zoo's surviving giant panda cub is a boy and was fathered by the zoo's male panda, the zoo said on Friday. The cub was born on Saturday to Mei Xiang, who is a top tourist draw in the U.S. capital. The cubs were sired by Tian Tian, the zoo's male giant panda, the zoo said in a statement.


McDonald's, Tyson Foods drop farm after videotape shows animal cruelty

The McDonald's 'golden arches' are displayed in a restaurant in New York McDonald's Corp and Tyson Foods both severed ties on Thursday with a Tennessee farm where workers were seen stabbing, clubbing and stomping on chickens in an undercover video shot by animal rights activists. The videotape, which was unveiled by Mercy For Animals at a news conference in Los Angeles, depicts gruesome animal cruelty toward the birds at what the group said was T&S Farm in Dukedom, Tennessee, which was under contract to Tyson Foods .


Baby Panda Twin Dies at National Zoo

Baby Panda Twin Dies at National Zoo One of giant panda Mei Xiang's twin cubs died today (Aug. 26), just five days after its birth, the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, D.C., reported. The cub showed no signs of decline until this morning, after spending the night with its mother Mei Xiang (may-SHONG), while its twin stayed in an incubator, said Dr. Donald Neiffer, the chief veterinarian of the National Zoo. This arrangement was set up to help Mei Xiang care for the twins.


Smaller newborn panda twin dies at Washington's National Zoo

A smaller of two panda cubs born to Giant Panda Mei Xiang August 22 is fed from a bottle at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington (Reuters) - The smaller of twin panda cubs born over the weekend to giant panda Mei Xiang died on Wednesday after experiencing respiratory difficulty, Washington's National Zoo said. The death of the cub, whose up-and-down weight since the birth on Saturday had raised concerns among the zoo keepers, occurred shortly after 2 p.m. on Wednesday. The twins' birth captured international attention as giant pandas are among the world's most endangered species.


Zoo "Murmuration" Review: For the Birds

Zoo "Murmuration" Review: For the Birds Zoo S01E08: "Murmuration" My goodness that was a lot of information to take in, thank you very much "Murmuration." Did a writer's assistant accidentally copy and paste the entire Zoo Wikipedia page? Watching the episode felt like I was cramming for the PSATs, and every question had to do with possible cures involving the Mother Cell, or strategies on how Chloe, Jamie, and the gang could prove their innocence. And when THAT wasn't happening, we were treated to the most delightful sound of basically a bird being smooshed with someone wearing boots on their hands. It was rough stuff. At least Mitch got to do exactly what we all wish we could in terms of elevator buttons. So dude escaped from Reiden WITH the untested medicine for Clem and Mother Cell like a pro only to be chastised by the rest of the bunch when he apologized for what he'd done. Sure I get that they felt betrayed but also the subtext here was that they'd rather Clem died than jeopardize the future of humanity. Seems kind of harsh to respond without at least a little bit of sympathy for the man's point of view. Like I said before though, anytime the crew found themselves in earshot of one another, they'd play that one improv game where you tell a story as a group one word at a time, all finishing each other's sentences and arriving at universal conclusions. Long story short, this meant spouting off about how the Mother Cell could be used to fix the mutation, but how that would require finding an animal with mutated DNA that had NOT come into contact with the Mother Cell. Mitch likened this unto finding a needle in a needle stack. On top of that the crew had to worry about clearing their names of murder and association with animal attacks (which I guess Reiden would try and pin on them?). If that wasn't enough, Chloe and the gang had to go off the grid because now all their bosses were mad at them. They were the kind of mad where they got mad at each other too. According to Oz this was all going on for roughly two months (time flies when you're one of five people who knows the world is ending), but for the better part of this ninth episode all I could think about was Mary J. Blige's "Family Affair." That's probably just me though, because for someone reason I spent a lot of times in factories as a child and that exposure to industrial chemicals may have altered my brain in an ungood way. Anyway, after his tongue-lashing Mitch was allowed to deliver medicine to his daughter. However she and Audra were busy taking Henry to the vet while birds mean-mugged them. The pup had miraculously made a full recovery (probably because of those Reiden drugs a few episodes back) and would enjoy a day at home while Audra and Clem went to the park. Inside the vet office I could have sworn someone digitally added animal pics from the web in all the picture frames. But if you ask me, something was off about the birds this episode. First, some birds in a vet office were making that dreadful noise, then Mitch and Abe had a positively Hitchcockian run-in with some neighborhood pigeons. Abe could give a care about the birds' well-being. He was like "shoo." Unfortunately, Clem and her confusingly named mother Audra did not enjoy the same dismissive freedom over the winged-beasts. Tons of birds had swarmed the park and trapped the mother-daughter pair under some playground equipment! The whole heavily populated park had a real hell of a time all around, but one lady in particular bore the brunt. In the end though it was the hundreds of birds that won the day. Next: Bar time! And Bar map time! (Continued from Page 1) Worse, it was very likely birds had developed the ability to communicate through a common language. What if the Bird Internet could send messages all over the world? You can bet eyeballs to beaks, babies in strollers the Earth over would be getting bit on a scale the likes of which we've never seen. Don't even try to blame this bad behavior on Mother Cells, birds. Y'all are assholes regardless. I read an article about how seagulls are pecking out the eyeballs of baby seals. I have been crapped on too many times to think anything but negatively of birds, and this episode solidified my opinion. Just had to get that off my chest. Across town, Chloe and Oz harassed Delavane in his own home and exchanged threats before parting ways. He seemed to think that the public would blame Chloe and her colleagues for being at the place of each animal attack. Weird! Anyway, they later joined Jamie in a bar to get drunk and rip maps off of walls. I especially liked how Chloe told everyone to pay with cash, then immediately wasted $100 bucks on a dumb bar map. I know it's fun to get drunk and all, but personally I function terribly with too many drinks in me. If you're going to save the world maybe don't be drunk about it. Outside Jackson gave Chloe a pep talk. The idea to use a really cool journo-source of Jamie's to get the word out backfired when the FBI-dude rifled through some garbage and discovered the gang at a warehouse. Not sure how he got the location down, as all he did was find a record of who Jamie had called with her burner phone, but the point is he wanted to blow her little head off. Thankfully Jackson shoved some boxes over on the man with a gun during a fun speech about how much he wanted to shoot people all the time as an FBI agent. What a jerk! Mitch and Abe found a little more success thankfully. But not before some birds came after the former's ex-family. By calling in a nearly decade's old favor from some local fireman who apparently all remembered Mitch's role in once saving a firehouse dalmatian, the scientist and animal expert were able to commandeer a hose and wet all the bad birds. All was well and Mitch was able to deliver the stolen Reiden meds. My favorite moment was how Audra point-blank asked Mitch, "How did you get these drugs?" and he pretty much blew off the question. Then she was totally cool with giving her daughter whatever. She was also cool with giving Mitch bedroom eyes while Justin was hard at work keeping a roof over her head. The episode ended with the crew making their way to Zambia because there could be mutated leopards there who have not been exposed to Reiden's Mother Cell. Seems about as good as their other objectives on this show! Find one animal, then find another animal. Repeat! However if stopping the animal apocalypse wasn't tough enough on $45/day cash, now the Bird Internet was up and running, plus the Reiden dude implied that Chloe and company would die before figuring out a cure. Yikes. I've always said that when it comes to beast-on-human-genocides, it's not the animals you have to worry about, it's the people. The birds suck too though. ANIMAL TRACKS – Do you think Mitch's plan will work? – Will Henry have a pivotal role? – Does this show deserve another season? – What would the second season be about? – What did you think of "Murmuration"?


Thailand destroys ivory stockpile amid junta crackdown

Thai Department of National Parks (DNP) workers display pieces of ivory during a destruction ceremony in Bangkok on August 26, 2015 Thailand destroyed more than two tonnes of ivory Wednesday -- a victory for animal rights groups fighting against the trade in a country renowned for being a hub for illegal tusks. The ceremony, in which 2,155 kilograms of raw tusks and carved trinkets were fed into an industrial rock crusher before being incinerated, was presided over by the Thai junta leader Prayut Chan-O-Cha and is the first time the kingdom has taken steps to destroy part of its stockpile. "This is to show the Thai government's strong determination to oppose ivory trafficking and that Thailand will comply with international rules," he said during the ceremony.


Thailand wins guarded praise for destroying ivory stockpile

Officials hold confiscated elephant tusks before destroying the ivory at the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, in Bangkok Wildlife officials in Thailand destroyed more than two tonnes of confiscated ivory worth around $3 million on Wednesday in what one rights group called a milestone in the fight against the illegal trade. Thailand is a top destination for African ivory smuggling in Asia and has come under increasing pressure to crack down on the trade. Animal rights campaigners have long accused successive governments of turning a blind eye to the problem.


Ohio zoo to send last Sumatran rhino in U.S. to Indonesia

Handout picture of Sumatran rhino, Harapan at the Cincinnati Zoo in Ohio By Kim Palmer CLEVELAND (Reuters) - The only Sumatran rhinoceros in the United States will be sent to Indonesia so it can have a chance to mate, an Ohio zoo famous for breeding the endangered species said on Tuesday. Eight-year-old Harapan, one of three Sumatran rhinos born at the Cincinnati Zoo, will move to the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary later this year, said Dr. Terri Roth, director of its Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife. The Cincinnati Zoo has had the only successful captive breeding program in the United States for the small, hairy species believed to number only 100 in the wild and nine in captivity worldwide, according to Roth.


2 bears who caused trouble at Grand Teton at Dakota zoo

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A zoo in southeast South Dakota has taken in two black bears that caused some trouble at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming.

Ohio zoo sending endangered rhino to Indonesia to mate

Harapan, a Sumatran rhino enters his Wildlife Canyon at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015, in Cincinnati. Harapan, or "Harry" the only Sumatran rhino in the Western Hemisphere, one of three calves born at the Cincinnati Zoo will be moved to Indonesia, to breed at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary. (Cara Owsley /The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT; NO SALES CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio zoo that has the last Sumatran rhino in the United States announced plans Tuesday to send him to Southeast Asia on a mission to mate and help preserve his critically endangered species.


Mama panda prefers bigger twin cub, U.S. zoo worried about smaller one

Smithsonian's National Zoo image of giant panda Mei Xiang Giant panda Mei Xiang is focusing her care on the larger of her newborn twins, and the smaller cub's up-and-down weight is a concern, Washington's National Zoo said on Tuesday. Mei Xiang, a star tourist draw in the U.S. capital, gave birth on Saturday after being artificially inseminated in April. Giant pandas are among the world's most endangered species.


Zoos: 5 star animals to photograph on your holidays

Wolodja, the new polar bear star of the Berlin zoo Two years after giving birth for the first time, the Smithsonian National Zoo's female panda made headlines last weekend by giving birth to two more offspring. Here is a panorama of some of the most famous zoo animals around the world. The Smithsonian National Zoological Park of Washington, DC made headlines recently with their star panda bear Mei Xiang giving birth to twin pandas.


National Zoo staff keeping cautious eye on panda twin cubs in U.S.

Smithsonian's National Zoo image of one of the giant panda cubs born on Saturday National Zoo staff are keeping a close eye on giant panda Mei Xiang's newborn twins, given the cubs' fragile state just days after their birth, the zoo's lead veterinarian said on Monday. "The cubs are doing pretty well. Mei Xiang, a star tourist draw, took staff by surprise on Saturday by giving birth to the twins about four-and-a-half hours apart after being artificially inseminated.


Zoo staff help Washington panda with newborn twins

Smithsonian's National Zoo image of one of the giant panda cubs born on Saturday National Zoo staff are helping giant panda Mei Xiang adjust to life with her newborn twins by occasionally switching out one cub and keeping it in an incubator, zoo officials said on Sunday. Mei Xiang, a star tourist draw, took staff by surprise on Saturday by giving birth to twins about four-and-a-half hours apart. Giant pandas are among the world's most endangered species and she had been artificially inseminated.


Hannibal "The Number of the Beast is 666" Review: No Pets Allowed

Hannibal "The Number of the Beast is 666" Review: No Pets Allowed Hannibal S03E12: "The Number of the Beast is 666" At the start of this half of the season, Chilton said that the Tooth Fairy/the Great Red Dragon was a four-quadrant killer, whereas Hannibal was a little too niche for his own good. It was a sly bit of self-awareness on Hannibal's behalf, an acknowledgement that it is delightful and weird and as a result, caters to a small—albeit deeply devoted—audience. It was also an acknowledgement that by going into Red Dragon territory the show was entering perhaps its most commercial phase. It is, after all, adapting a novel that had been adapted twice before, and one that is focused on a serial killer who is tortured and very violent. He even leaves the show's now trademark murder tableaux, but they're nothing that are quite as ostentatious as a man in a tree or a human cello. (It also, I like to think, anticipated critiques of the first half of Season 3; Bryan Fuller and his team are too smart to not know that the first half of this season was going to maybe stretch things pretty far for audiences, even those who love the show.) "The Number of the Beast is 666" certainly felt like the clearest sign of Hannibal's desire to be, if not still fully itself, then at least a slightly more accessible version of itself, probably the version of itself that thrived before it stuffed a social worker inside of a horse. I'm not saying this as a criticism, but more to note that this week's episode made sure to explain things in pretty clear terms. The ambiguity that Hannibal so often rolls around in like a pig in mud wasn't really narrative or aesthetic this week; it was more simply grounded in the characters' moral ambiguity as Jack, Will, and Alana all but served up poor Frederick to the Dragon. Dude cannot catch a break. Again, this isn't a criticism, but rather a note of a shift in tone. Hannibal always liked to explain itself, but it tended to leave the last little bit of explanation hanging, lost to the quick cut to an act break or the end of the episode. This week, we received both visual and spoken confirmation of what Will saw when he looked at Molly, a bit of a hanging thread from the end of the last episode. He saw her changed in the way the Dragon changed Mrs. Leeds and Mrs. Jacobi, and now it was all he could see. We were granted it in a stylistic flourish of seeing Nina Arianda done up as a woman clothed in the sun, and then it was explained, aloud, as well. It's an odd bit of redundancy from the show, even if it made sense within its context for the characters to be, at this point, (mostly... again, poor Chilton) more forthcoming with one another. This also occurred with explaining the whole plot regarding luring the Dragon into a rash act and setting up Chilton as the patsy, or pet, as the case was here. Will and Bedelia discussed it in therapy (How lovely was it, by the way, that Will was now getting therapy from Hannibal's former therapist? Then again, she's the only one who would understand.) as Will pointed out that the Dragon always killed the pets first, and then, to drive the point home, Chilton said it again, as best he could anyway. One of these mentions would've likely been enough, but it again felt like a mix of Chilton wanting Will to know that he knew he got played—again, characters being more forthcoming with one another. This impulse for clear explanation wasn't an NBC thing because I doubt NBC truly gave a damn—if they had, the show would've never been as ambiguous as it was—so it felt like a conscious decision on behalf of the show. It's as if Hannibal was saying, "Yeeeah. The first half was maybe a little opaque. Let's map some of this out and make sure it comes across clearly." There's also the sense that this to-the-pointness mimicked the prose of a crime novel, and of all of the Hannibal Lecter novels, Red Dragon operates the most in that vein (save for the Dolarhyde flashback sections, of course, but even those can be a little clinical). So there's a bit of a prose tone sampling happening here as well, adding to the show's already extensive narrative sampling and remixing. I'm actually tempted to go back and see if this impulse has been here since we started this arc and I'm just noticing it now, or if this was just something of one-off occurrence. If it was a one-off occurrence then the over-explanation of things might be a way to call attention to the absence of Will, Alana, and Jack themselves not deeply interrogating their actions by making Chilton a target. After all, the three of them, more than anyone, know what it's like to both put a man on a hook and to be the man on the hook. Hannibal and Bedelia were both more than happy to call attention to it, but none of the trio seemed all that concerned by their actions. Jack just wanted to catch the guy, same as ever. Alana was long past the point of her moral quandaries, and Will was ready to go home. Add on the fact that none of them have ever liked Chilton, and well, there you go. The indifference to the whole affair was more than a bit surprising throughout the episode, which made Will's eventual realization of just what they had consciously or subconsciously done all the more emotionally taxing. It wasn't just his response to the video that brought this taxation about for me, either. No, really, it was how Will refused to look at the burned wreckage of Frederick Chilton. It wasn't the state of Chilton's scorched body that caused Will to avert his gaze but the fact that Will knew he was responsible for it, and he had perhaps realized just how far he's fallen once again. Not to mention how he and the others nicely played Chilton to a punishment that Hannibal would approve of ("Wood burns because it has the proper stuff in it."), something else that was pointed out for us. Now you're just like, "But, Noel, what about everything that happened in Dolarhyde's house? Wasn't that great?" It was so great. Like, way too good. Last week, I touched briefly on how well I thought Richard Armitage was doing with Francis Dolarhyde, and that continued here, but in a different way. We've seen him as Dolarhyde for pretty much the entirety of the run so far, but this was the first time we've been granted an extended experience with Armitage as the Great Red Dragon. So much of what Dragon should be is defined by what Dolarhyde isn't in front of others. Confident. Deranged. Arrogant. Demanding. Raspy. Contemplative. So it's important that we've seen Dolarhyde, mild-mannered photo and video lab technician, struggle with the Dragon before it's essentially unleashed and had nearly completed its becoming. That contrast was necessary so that this moment was horrifying for us as much as it was for Chilton. Glimmers of Dolarhyde couldn't come out, or it would break the illusion. It's why as the Dragon touched Chilton, it was horrifying for all the obvious reasons, but weird because that body was a body that we've watched refrain and pull away from physical contact. Here, it's sensual and controlled. Even when Reba stopped by to drop off soup, it's not Dolarhyde who answered the door but the Dragon playing Dolarhyde. Armitage simply got it. Really, though, it's Raúl Esparza's episode. I have a widely acknowledged soft spot for Hannibal's Frederick Chilton, and it's mostly due to Esparza's performance. He makes the weaselly, maligned, self-important psychiatrist so darn likable—making him the canary in the coal mine about Hannibal in Season 2 certainly helped as well—that watching Chilton get played again by his betters was pretty horrible. His interactions with Hannibal in this episode were a really great summation for the character. I loved how Esparza just whined out, "This was quantifiably bitchy!" and "Of course it didn't! I was lying! On your behalf! To save your life!" while still getting some measure of satisfaction that Hannibal's locked up. It's never enough for Chilton, but nothing ever is. Then there was just everything about his scene in the Dolarhyde home. Esparza had to be on since the camera didn't break away from him too often (and wisely left the Dragon largely out of focus, a fuzzy threat that we can't quite see to emphasize how Chilton simply couldn't see—and didn't want to see!—him). Esparza was more than up for it, though. It was a long sequence, an intense sequence, as we watched Chilton go through every possible gambit that he thought would spare his life. Ignorance and confusion. Assurances. Bargaining. Placating. Pitiful attempts at creating empathy. And while the words come as fast as furious as they could, they were choked by a harrowing amount of fear. Esparza's voice was on the verge of wailing, he's constantly swallowing, and he let us see Chilton's gears turning as he tried to figure out a way to escape. It's positively childlike, and it's really captivating. Without Esparza and Chilton as its center, this sequence could've faltered, or easily have become overshadowed by Armitage's performance. Instead, there was a nice balance between the two actors. And given everything else this show has put Chilton through—having his organs removed, getting framed as the Chesapeake Ripper, getting shot in the face—it was all the more terrifying and exhausting (in good ways) to watch the show exact one last bit of torture on the pompous peacock. À LA CARTE – Hannibal slurping up Chilton's lip was just the most amazing cutaway gag (HA!) of the year. – Was so glad to finally get Dolarhyde's kimono. I have been waiting on it. – Since I did three solid paragraphs about the novels last week, I skipped over that this week, but I appreciated how the show, having already pulled the Freddie/Freddy Lounds fiery wheelchair bit in Season 2, did it again but here used as a commentary on Will and Jack's methods for catching killers (which was also explained to us...) instead of a bit of psych-out for the book readers. Sly, sly stuff. – Also regarding the novel: it's wonderful how so much of novel Freddy Lounds' dialog slipped so easily into Chilton's mouth during his sequence with the Dragon. – "They cry when they do not like the stewed apricots." – "I. Am. The Dragon." is apparently never going to be not ridiculous. What did you think of "The Number of the Beast is 666"?


U.S. probes deaths of 30 whales along southern Alaska coast

By Eric M. Johnson SEATTLE (Reuters) - U.S. marine biologists have launched an investigation into the mass die-off of 30 whales found washed ashore along Alaska's southern coast this summer, nearly three times the region's average for this time of year, a federal official said on Friday. Since May 2015, the carcasses of 11 fin whales, 14 humpback whales, one gray whale, and four other whales of indeterminate species turned up along the western Gulf of Alaska, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Spot Has Your Back: Dogs Avoid People Who Slight Owners

"So far, it is not clear what dogs understand about human interactions," said Marie Nitzschner, a postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany, who was not involved in the study. As many dog owners know, the animals eagerly watch people all the time, said the study's senior author, Kazuo Fujita, a professor of psychology and comparative cognition at Kyoto University in Japan.

Marksmen kill endangered species in New Zealand bird cull

The rare and endangered takahe, a flightless bird indigenous to New Zealand A bird cull on a New Zealand island has been abruptly halted after marksmen killed four rare takahe, an endangered species with only 300 known to exist, officials said Friday. The deaths were "deeply disappointing", Conservation Department director Andrew Baucke said in a statement. "The hunters had been carefully briefed on how to differentiate between the flightless takahe and pukeko, including instructions to only shoot birds on the wing," Baucke said.


Study sees dying wildlife, bigger fires if drought lasts

FILE - In this Aug. 12, 2015, file photo, Mike Marty, of the California Fish and Wildlife Department, hoists a net full of splashing rainbow trout as one jumps back into the holding tank, at the San Joaquin Hatchery near Fresno, Calif. A new study says dying wildlife, bigger wildfires and drying-up farm towns will be the biggest crises if California’s four-year drought continues. A report released overnight Wednesday to Thursday, Aug. 20, by the Public Policy Institute of California non-profit think-tank sketches that picture of California in 2016, and 2017, if the state’s driest four years on record stretches into a fifth, or sixth, year of drought. (John Walker/The Fresno Bee via AP) LOCAL PRINT OUT (VISALIA TIMES-DELTA, REEDY EXPONENT, KINGBURG RECORDER, SELMA ENTERPRISE, HANFORD SENTINEL, PORTERVILLE RECORDER, MADERA TRIBUNE, THE BUSINESS JOURNAL FRENSO); LOCAL TELEVISION OUT (KSEE24, KFSN30, KGE47, KMPH26); MANDATORY CREDIT SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The carcasses of salmon, trout and more than a dozen other newly extinct native species lie in dry streambeds around California.


How Cecil the Lion Rescued a Wildlife Program on the Verge of Extinction

Oxford University's Wildlife Conservation Research Unit was close to shutting down its anti-poaching team. Then Walter Palmer killed a lion, the group was mentioned on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live!' and a $1 million donation drive became a roaring success.

Bill Maher: "Unlike Lion Killers, PETA Only Goes After Fair Game" (Guest Column)

"PETA constituents are not fat cats but pigs, cows, orcas, mice and any other animal in trouble," says the 'Real Time' host who is a long-time board member of 35-year-old animal rights organization.

Giant panda at Washington zoo could give birth soon

Handout photograph shows an ultrasound image of Smithsonian National Zoo giant panda Mei Xiang. The National Zoo's giant panda Mei Xiang, who was showing signs of being pregnant, is actually carrying a developing fetus and could give birth in coming weeks, the Washington zoo said on Wednesday. Veterinarians detected a 1.6-inch (4-cm) fetus during a Wednesday ultrasound of Mei Xiang, who is a star tourist draw in the U.S. capital, the zoo said in a statement. "Today, we are cautiously optimistic," said Dennis Kelly, the zoo's director.


Zoo "The Cheese Stands Alone" Review: Rat Queen for a Day

Zoo "The Cheese Stands Alone" Review: Rat Queen for a Day Zoo S01E08: "The Cheese Stands Alone" Okay hold on a second. In "The Cheese Stands Alone," Zoo's radical eighth episode, did Jackson Oz just say that the last time he was on Pender Island was when he was age 12 and did Sheriff Bowman just tell him not to wait 10 more years before coming back? Because that would make his character exactly 22 years young which sorry, but out of all the cockamamie ideas put forth by Zoo—including coordinated animal pandemics, Mother Cells, and male rats giving immaculate hyper-birth, THAT has to be the most unbelievable thing about this show. I hope I am wrong. But first, a word from our sponsors... Unlike Windows 10, this was the best ever. I don't even know where to start, it had everything I wanted out of Zoo. Dialogue that sounded like it came from a bugged rec room of an insane asylum, unnecessary flamethrowers, Tinder dates that devolved into horse-and-buggy collisions. Submit this one to the Emmys guys! Lest anyone get confused (HA!), let's put all this into context: the crew had to investigate a boat full of rats and dead bodies that was set adrift on memory bliss near Pender Island, while Mitch clocked some time with his child back in Boston under false pretenses. The goal of Chloe, Jamie, Abraham, and Jackson was to warn the fair citizens and tourists of Pender Island, plus capture a male and female rat that had scurried ashore off the S.S. Ratitanic. See, this island held special meaning for Jackson Oz because it was the last happy memory he had of his father before the dude went nuts. But for some reason Jackson also mentioned that his dad had a shack here too? Between this and the shabby digs on his radioactive Island of Dr. Mor-on, sounds like daddy was a shack man, no judgement, just saying. Naturally, Jackson ran into his childhood sweetheart Sheriff Becky Bowman. I don't think these two are going to get back together, but every once in a while the show will put Oz in a situation with females where there are eyebrows wriggling and knowing glances and then never talk about any of it it again. Like when Chloe landed on top of Oz during the simulated wolf-brain coffee-pot explosion, or even when Becky mistook Chloe for Jackson's partner. Ladies please, his true love is and always will be stopping animal genocides. Anyway Sheriff Becky Bowman maybe was a mediocre investigator because she did not seem to believe that the rats had anything to do with the death of the boat's crew... ...even though the seamen had tons of rat bites all over them and there were like a million rats on the boat. Did you know it was normal for all boats to have rats on them? I didn't. What percentage of Carnival Cruises are rat? Anyway, now that the rats had a taste for human blood they were literally blood-thirsty which I'm to assume was a bad thing but I did not want to speak for the characters of this show. Like the very saltwater taffy sold on the majestic Pender Island boardwalk, the hotel exterminator chewed his scenery something fierce and we were all the better for it. Honestly it was like watching a young Oliver Hardy take his first steps into comic stardom. I wondered if his pontificating about exterminator reality shows was a nod to Billy the Exterminator, a series I am quite fond of. See, the exterminator was in a cocky way about killing rats—even to the point where he tested out flamethrowers just because (do exterminators use flamethrowers?) and pretended like this job would be over in time to swing by Pender Island Boardwalk for some famous corn dogs (I guessed). Little did he know this would be his last job ever and he would be dining in hell. Next: Old people on Tinder (Continued from Page 1) And from here the show really kicked into gear. Overall, I was NOT mad at the rat-centric dialogue, but had trouble picking a favorite line: "Rat Queen" was my nickname in juvie! While the gang investigated the Wilson (so many hotels in this show)—and partook in delectable rat-chat, a few states over there was a delightful Woody Allen-esque New York story about an elderly couple on a Tinder date. At first it looked like it would be another throwaway element of this, the animal uprising, and we were to witness the final bittersweet hours of some doomed geriatrics. Next thing you know, the two were riding a horse-drawn carriage through what I assume was Central Park. The night was so magical you'd think it was planned by Chris Harrison of The Bachelor! Everything about the date was perfect—a chatty driver, a horse named Gypsy. The old guy kept checking his phone nervously about a missing "employee," and Gypsy could not STAND the rudeness so he decided to end the evening and rescue the lady from her rude date. Even though the lady had to be led away in a stretcher, the romantic evening was no less wonderful. Then in a twist of events it was revealed that the dude was in league with Ben Shaffer, which I feel obligated to mention. But most importantly, a love connection had been made. Next: More rats! (Continued from Page 2) Back in Boston, Mitch spent the day with his estranged daughter and suffered shade from his ex-wife for not planning anything to do. Luckily the kid was chill about it, and they went to a local park where he gave his daughter a very special gift of an old parking ticket with a coffee stain. This small gesture made up for years of absence and everything was back to normal. Even though Mitch had pulled off some Father of the Year-level parenting, for some reason Mitch's wife was really pissed at him about having a midlife crisis and told him to go to a "nightclub full of cheerleaders." Then he went to make the swap for the Mother Cell in exchange for untested medicine. I appreciate where he was going with all this, but how did he plan on getting his wife to sign off on ill-gotten, unapproved treatment? Luckily that question never came up, because Mitch recognized Chloe's leader/Skype buddy at the last minute and ditched out. Way to go Mitch, your daughter had a good run anyway and even if she did become healthy would it really be worth it to make Clem live to be gored by a billy goat at a petting zoo or whatever? It would not. In the depths of the Wilson hotel Chloe and the team really got into a lot of trouble. Like, they were able to catch a male rat, but then there must've been a magician staying in the hotel long ago because when Abraham, Jamie, and Oz opened up the rat-bag holding only a male, there were tons of "pups." Depending on your feelings toward rats pouring out of elevators, things then either got really good or really bad. It was a real "elevator half empty of rats, elevator half full of rats" predicament made worse/better by the fact that Abraham, Jamie, and Chloe became trapped with some disgusting ass rat queens in the basement. Looks like last call at your local bar, am I right? Anyway, it seemed like the team was going to become rat food, until Chloe showed up and took matters into her own hands. Another job well done for Chloe and the gang! Wait, it was a job well done right? Like what's the metric for whether or not the crew succeeds here? I mean, they learned some more about animals evolving to destroy humans and how that could specifically happen. So that's got to count for something. But didn't they kind of know this already? I guess knowledge IS power, but the team sure has its work cut out for it considering all the cloak-and-dagger subterfuge with Reiden Global. Take us away, Sheriff Becky! ANIMAL TRACKS – Do you like rats? – Did you learn something from this episode? – Do you want Jackson to find his true love? – Was Mitch right to withhold the Mother Cell? – What did you think of "The Cheese Stands Alone"?


Since Katrina, better response helps reconnect pets, people

This Sept. 9, 2005 photo provided by Best Friends Animal Society shows a volunteer, center with Best Friends Animal Society rescue team members Ethan Gurney, left, and Jeff Popowich, right, retrieving dogs from the floods of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. Since the storm struck on Aug. 29, 2005, laws have changed how animal welfare groups and emergency responders approach pet rescues. They also have received training to better catalog rescued animals. (Troy Snow/Best Friends Animal Society via AP) LOS ANGELES (AP) — Outside the nearly 2,000 human fatalities from Hurricane Katrina, the disaster displaced or killed hundreds of thousands of dogs, cats and other animals at a time when rescues focused on people and pets were left behind.


TV Ratings: 'Zoo' and 'Talent' Take Tuesday Hits

NBC still easily wins the night with both 'AGT' and 'Hollywood Game Night.'

Arizona man pleads not guilty to beheading wife, killing dogs

An Arizona man accused of decapitating his wife and two puppies before cutting off part of his arm and gouging out one of his eyes pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder on Tuesday, court officials said. Kenneth Dale Wakefield, 43, a transient with a history of mental illness, also pleaded not guilty to two counts of animal cruelty during a hearing at Maricopa County Superior Court in Phoenix. Asked for his name by court commissioner Julie Mata, Wakefield identified himself.

Patagonia Ends Relationship With Wool Supplier Following Graphic PETA Report

The sportswear brand follows Stella McCartney's lead in cutting ties with Ovis 21.

Apparel maker Patagonia stops buying Ovis 21 wool after PETA video

The footage published on Thursday by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) showed the cruel treatment at farms which supplied the Ventura, California-based company with merino wool used in its base layers and insulation. Patagonia's Chief Executive Officer Rose Marcario said in a statement the company was shocked by the video, and they were dismayed to witness such "horrifying" mistreatment.

Nearly 20,000 dogs, cats, other pets find homes during drive

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A national campaign helped find homes for nearly 20,000 dogs, cats and other potential pets living at animal shelters across the country.

Georgia court weighs destiny of 18 captured beluga whales

By Rich McKay ATLANTA (Reuters) - A U.S. court hearing on Friday on the fate of 18 beluga whales captured in Russia pitted federal regulators against the Georgia aquarium seeking to bring them to the United States. U.S. environmental officers have said moving the whales to the United States would hasten the depletion of the wild population and violate the Marine Mammal Protection Act. "No matter how you slice the data," the whale population can't handle the losses from capture for display in zoos and aquariums, said Clifford Stevens, a lawyer for the government.

Ohio zoo will house cubs of bear euthanized after hiker death in Yellowstone

Two female grizzly bear cubs orphaned after their mother was euthanized because she was linked to the fatal mauling of a hiker in Yellowstone National Park will be moved to a zoo in Toledo, Ohio, zoo officials said on Friday. The cubs, both less than a year old, were orphaned when their 259-pound (117-kg) mother was killed on Thursday after DNA testing proved she was involved in the death of hiker Lance Crosby, 63. The 50-to-60 pound (23-to-27 kg) cubs cannot survive on their own in the wild and will be transferred to a captive facility first before arriving at the Toledo Zoo in the fall, zoo officials said.

Georgia court to weigh destiny of 18 captured beluga whales

By Rich McKay ATLANTA (Reuters) - A U.S. court hearing on the fate of 18 beluga whales captured in Russia is expected on Friday to pit federal regulators against the Georgia aquarium seeking to bring them to the United States. U.S. environmental officers have said that moving the whales to the United States would hasten the depletion of the wild beluga whale population and violate the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, which is suing the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) fisheries service, says that its efforts will help the beluga whales.

Woman's best friend: MAC introduces AW15 beauty collection inspired by dogs

http://www.machautedogs.com/ Everyone knows that dogs make the best fashion accessories, but now the clever canines have gone one step further by inspiring a whole new beauty collection -- specifically MAC's Autumn/Winter 2015 cosmetics line. "Haute Dogs" is the latest high-pedigree collection from the beauty brand, inspired by the "buttery fur tones" of fashionable pooches. Comprising baked mineral eyeshadow compacts in fall shades, soft berry lipsticks and a whole series of "shaping powders" in various shades of beiges, peaches and golds for sculpting and contouring, the collection aims to maximize natural beauty.


Stella McCartney Ends Relationship With Wool Supplier After PETA Report of Mistreatment

The designer "As a designer who built a brand on not using leather, fur or animal skins in its designs, I can't tolerate it!"

Stella McCartney Drops Wool Supplier After PETA Report of Mistreatment

"As a designer who built a brand on not using leather, fur or animal skins in its designs, I can't tolerate it!"

Prince Harry visits South Africa's flagship wildlife park

FILE - In this Dec 8, 2014, file photo, Prince Harry takes a photograph out of the window of a helicopter as he travels over the Muluti Mountains on his way to visit a herd boy night school constructed by his Sentebale charity, in Mokhotlong, Lesotho. Prince Harry has been on a private visit to Kruger National Park, South Africa's flagship wildlife park, where poachers have killed rhinos in record numbers and clashed with rangers, the service said in a statement emailed Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015, to The Associated Press. (Chris Jackson/Pool Photo via AP, File) JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Britain's Prince Harry has been on a private visit to South Africa's flagship wildlife park, where poachers have killed rhinos in record numbers and clashed with rangers.


Sea Dogs Beat Rock Cats To End Skid

Portland, Maine — William Cuevas, making his Double A debut, allowed one run and four hits in five innings as the Portland Sea Dogs beat the New Britain Rock Cats 4-1 Tuesday night at Hadlock Field.

County says there are 5,000 cats living on the streets

Tuesday afternoon, the director of Clay County Animal Care and Control went before the Clay County Commission to ask for financial help to combat the county’s large feral cat problem.

Purrfect friend for homeless cats

MOVE over Catwoman, there’s a new group of modern day superheroes in town. Barbara Jackson and her team have rescued more than 700 cats since creating Wild Cats in 2010.

Rock Cats Home Opener on Thursday Night at NB Stadium

New Britain, CT- The New Britain Rock Cats Baseball Club, the Double-A Eastern League Affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, will host OPENING NIGHT 2015 this Thursday, April 16 at 6:35 PM against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays affiliate).

Dogs reunited with owners far more than cats

Sometimes people maybe assume something bad has happened to their cat. Maybe they don’t look quite as hard. I do think cats aren’t maybe regarded as much as dogs. — Andrea McDonald, Coquitlam City Hall

More concerns about Raleigh neighborhood dogs: woman’s dog killed

Police were called again about a group of vicious dogs in one local neighborhood.

Releasing feral cats raises concerns

The Orange County animal shelter starts to get busy around this time of the year as people bring in newborn kittens and pregnant mother cats.Celesta Peterson, who has volunteered at the shelter for eight years, said she used to walk past feral cat...

Sick coyotes' habits boost encounters with humans

Certain coyotes are known to have frequent unnerving encounters with humans and their pets in residential neighbourhoods, and scientists now have an explanation. It turns out that coyotes infected with a common skin parasite tend to develop habits that make them problem animals. "These coyotes that were losing their hair and were sick were more likely to run into people in residential areas ...

Yates, Sea Dogs agree to split in surprising move

Sea Dogs couldn't replicate the magic behind their hot start, and it leads to a mutual parting-of-ways for coach and team.

QC’s ‘4 pets per house’ ordinance repealed

First, the good news: The controversial animal regulation ordinance limiting the number of cats and dogs Quezon City residents can keep has become null and void following the approval of another one which does not contain the provision.   The bad news, however, is that the "four domesticated animals per household" policy may still be incorporated into the implementing rules and regulations (IRR ...
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