Archive for December, 2007

55-Year-Old Orangutan Dies in Miami Zoo

December 31, 2007

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A 55-year-old Sumatran orangutan, believed to be the world’s oldest, has died at the Miami zoo.

Nonja, who was born on the Indonesian island of Sumatra and lived in Miami since 1983, was found dead Saturday morning.

“Everybody’s very sad, especially with an animal like an orangutan,” said Ron Magill, spokesman for the Miami Metro Zoo. “You see a lot of yourself in these animals. The great apes are our closest relatives.”

A necropsy showed that Nonja suffered a brain hemorrhage that made her pass out and vomit. She choked on her vomit, Magill said.

Click here to read the full article.

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Panther kills farm animal, threatens ten year old boy

December 31, 2007

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A Florida Panther is causing trouble for one Golden Gate neighborhood. A Collier County man claims that a panther jumped over his fence, killed a farm animal, and almost attacked a ten year old boy…

…When all of a sudden, Edgar said that a panther jumped over a fence and stood just 50 yards away while crouching down as if it were ready to attack one of the boys that was with the group.

“What I would like to put forth is the fact that it stalked a kid, ” Edgar said.

“I thought he was ready to jump so we both shoot, ‘pow-pow,’ not at the panther, just in the air.”

After firing several rounds, the panther then ran away, and so did the little boy and his family.

Click here to read the full article.

Also click on the photo of the Florida panther and her cub to read “Florida Panthers Threatened as Development Overtakes Habitat.”

Advocates Seek Tougher Animal Abuse Laws

December 31, 2007

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Animal advocates around the nation hope that public outrage over dogfighting and puppy mill scandals in Virginia will force state and federal lawmakers to pass tougher animal abuse laws.

Some sportsmen, however, warn that the emotionally charged debate could result in laws affecting legitimate owners, especially of hunting dogs, along with the intended targets.

The legislative moves stem from the arrest of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick and friends on charges they were operating a dogfighting ring at his 15-acre country estate in southeastern Virginia.

That case, in which Vick was sentenced to 23 months behind bars, was followed by a study showing that the majority of puppies sold in Virginia come from puppy mills run by unlicensed breeders who churn out pets like livestock.

Click here to read the full article.

Ella needs a home!!!

December 31, 2007

My dad is a vet in Baldwin County, Alabama. Last night I went to his office to visit the animals and met Ella.

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She wiggles around a lot and wags her tail when she’s excited, which is why this photo is a little blurry.

Ella was born with only half a bottom jaw, so her tongue always sticks out, like Odie.

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Aside from being a bit silly-looking, Ella is a normal, healthy dog. She is spayed and up to date on all her shots and heart worm prevention. She’s also really well behaved; she didn’t bark while I was with her, and answers to her name, and wants to be petted and loved by people. Ella seems like she’d be great with kids. Her mid-range size makes her a great dog for a variety of living conditions.
If you are interested in adopting her, please contact Baldwin Animal Rescue Center (BARC) at 251-928-4885.

African Ivory Headed for One-Time Auction

December 29, 2007

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Check out this story from NPR:

Weekend Edition Saturday, December 29, 2007 · Sometime early next year, tons of African ivory will be sold at auction to Japan. Despite the international ban on the trade, South Africa, Botswana and Namibia will be allowed a one-time purge of their stockpiled ivory. Conservationists hope the sale won’t reignite widespread demand for elephant tusks.

Animal activists say S.F. tiger attack supports case against zoos

December 29, 2007

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The recent tiger attack in San Francisco has given a platform to animal rights activists, who say holding wild animals in captivity is cruel, for-profit entertainment and should be stopped.

Those who despise zoos – and not just PETA, though the group did join the chorus – say the attack proves that animals are unhappy and that zoos should be phased out.

“The major problem with zoos is they put the entertainment value at a higher priority than the welfare or well-being of the animals,” said Elliot Katz, president of In Defense of Animals, a Mill Valley animal rights group. “Because elephants and tigers are big draws, the zoo creates dangerous situations.”

Katz helped organize the effort to get the elephants removed from the San Francisco Zoo after obtaining medical records that showed they were being mistreated. He said that both elephants and tigers need much more space than the zoo provides.

Click here to read the full article.

3rd installment of Animal-Esque Artists and Albums from the 2007 Billboard Critics’ Picks

December 28, 2007

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The full list can be found here.

JILL MENZE
Billboard contributor
9. Andrew Bird, “Armchair Apocrypha” (Fat Possum)


ANDRE PAINE
Billboard correspondent

4. Arctic Monkeys, “Favourite Worst Nightmare” (Domino)
5.  For Lashes, “Fur and Gold” (Echo/EMI).
8. New Young Pony Club, “Fantastic Playroom” (Modular)

MITCH PETERS
Billboard touring correspondent

2. The Bird and the Bee, “The Bird and the Bee” (Metro Blue/Blue Note)
7. Deerhoof, “Friend Opportunity” (Kill Rock Stars)

PAUL POMFRET
Billboard international charts manager, London

4. Deerhoof, “Friend Opportunity” (Kill Rock Stars)
Unconventional but creative experimental rock from San Francisco.


WOLFGANG SPAHR
Billboard German bureau chief

10. The Bosshoss, “Stallion Battalion” (Island/Universal)
Authentic-sounding country, made (you guessed it) in Germany.

MARK SUTHERLAND
Billboard international bureau chief

1. Arctic Monkeys, “Favourite Worst Nightmare” (Domino)
It may not have shattered the zeitgeist like their debut, but this is actually the superior record.
6. Manic Street Preachers, “Send Away the Tigers” (Sony BMG)
The most unanticipated return-to-form of the year.

CHRISTA TITUS
Billboard copy editor

4. Queensrÿche, “Take Cover” (Rhino)
Veterans loosen up with raucous interpretations of Peter Gabriel, Pink Floyd, Queen and others.
8. Chimaira, “Resurrection” (Ferret Music)
Metal underdogs are tenacious as pitbulls, and their music is equally unrelenting.
9. Machine Head, “The Blackening” (Roadrunner)
Modern thrash assault earned every column inch of its universal praise.

Japan announces it suspends the capture of humpback whales in the Antarctic

December 28, 2007

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France noted with satisfaction the announcement by the Japanese government to suspend the capture of humpback whales in the Antarctic. This is a positive signal in the current context of accommodation within the International Whaling Commission, whose 78 members are contemplating the institution’s future and the means to end the deadlock.

France strongly encourages Japan to pursue this path and to end its program of so-called scientific whaling in the Antarctic (JARPA II), which plans to kill nearly 935 minke whales and 50 fin whales that appear on the IUCN (World Conservation Union) red list of threatened species.

Click here to read the original article.

 

Speaking of France, have you seen this French Orangina “Naturally Juicy” ad? It’s filled with scantily-clad, stripping, and lapdancing critters. Are they anthropomorphized animals? Furries? I don’t know what to call them. Though it is very weird, it is also a “visual feast,” as the critics like to say.

It’s Giant Rodent Day at Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo!

December 28, 2007

The most recent news out of Papua New Guinea is the discovery of a giant rat. Now, we don’t really like rats at the best of times, and a rat that’s five times larger than the normal variety sounded kind of scary. But actually this picture makes the Mallomys giant rat seem kinda cute. (see picture below)

Click here to read the full article.

Are any of my readers familiar with the ROUS’s (Rodents of Unusual Size) from The Princess Bride Books and movies? These two critters bear a striking resemblance:

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Hopefully Mallomys doesn’t have an unquenchable thirst for human blood.

Check out this real rodent of unusual size,the capybara! The capybara is the world’s largest living rodent species.

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According to this Wikipedia article: Capybaras are social animals, usually found in groups, between 10 and 30 (though looser groups of up to 100 sometimes can be formed),controlled by a dominant male, who will have a prominent scent gland on his nose used for smearing his scent on the grasses in his territory. They communicate through a combination of scent and sound, being very vocal animals with purrs and alarm barks, whistles and clicks, squeals and grunts.

Capybaras are excellent swimmers and can survive completely underwater for up to five minutes, an ability they will use to evade predators. If necessary, a Capybara can sleep underwater, keeping its nose just at the waterline.

Capybaras eat their own feces in the morning in order to help digest the cellulose in the grass that forms their normal diet. During midday, as temperatures increase, Capybaras wallow in water to keep cool and then graze in late afternoons and early evenings. They sleep little, usually dozing off and on throughout the day and grazing into and through the night.

Millions of years ago, the largest rodent known to man roamed the earth, Phoberomys pattersoni.

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According to Wikipedia: Phoberomys pattersoni was a rodent that lived in the ancient Orinoco River delta approximately 8 million years ago. It was the second-largest of the roughly 7 species of its genus. Like many other rodents, Phoberomys was a herbivore with high-crowned premolars and molars.

An almost complete skeleton of P. pattersoni, discovered in Urumaco, Venezuela in 2000, has enabled researchers to reconstruct its size and probable lifestyle. It was 3 m(9.8 ft) long, with an additional 1.5 m (5 ft.) tail, and probably weighed around 700 kilograms, making it the largest rodent for which a good size and weight estimate is currently possible. Its congener Phoberomys insolita was a bit larger still, but it is not known from any reasonably complete remains and thus its size cannot be estimated more precisely.

NEWS FROM ANIMAL KINGDOM: Cute animal writers on strike!!!

December 27, 2007

Tour Schedule for Super Furry Animals 2008

December 27, 2007

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What could be more Animal-esque than Super Furry Animals? Here’s their tour schedule for the new year.

12/31 – London, ENG – Royal Festival Hall
01/23 – Hoboken, NJ – Maxwell’s
01/25 – Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg
01/26 – Philadelphia, PA – Starlight Ballroom
01/27 – Washington, D.C. – 9:30 Club
01/29 – Carrboro, NC – Cat’s Cradle
01/30 – Atlanta, GA – Variety Playhouse
01/31 – New Orleans, LA – The Republic
02/01 – Dallas, TX – Granada Theatre
02/02 – Austin, TX – Emo’s
02/05 – Tucson, AZ – Club Congress
02/06 – Solona Beach, CA – Belly Up
02/08 – Los Angeles, CA – Echoplex
02/09 – San Francisco, CA – Great American Music Hall
02/11 – Portland, OR – Doug Fir
02/12 – Seattle, WA – Neumos
02/15 – Minneapolis, MN – Varsity Theatre
02/16 – Chicago, IL – Metro
02/17 – Detroit, MI – Magic Stick
02/18 – Buffalo, NY – Tralf Music Hall
02/20 – Toronto, ON – Mod Club
02/21 – Montreal, QC – Cabaret Music Hall
02/22 – Ithaca, NY – Cornell University
02/23 – Boston, MA – The Paradise
02/25 – New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom

www.superfurry.com/

Cat’s Bach is worse than her bite

December 27, 2007

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Philadelphia couple Burnell Yow and Betsy Alexander were in their bedroom when they heard someone – or, rather, something – tapping away on their Yamaha piano downstairs.

“We did not think it was a burglar but it was so weird,” Ms Alexander said.

“We had heard our other cat Gabby walk on the keys in the past, but this was repeated notes. So we got up and ran downstairs and there was Nora sitting in perfect posture with her two paws on the piano. She just sat there and looked at us.

“We praised her and she continued. We were laughing and telling her what a good girl she was. We did not know that it was going to become a habit.”…

…Nora, who is named after the surrealist painter Leonora Carrington, has been playing everyday, without any coaxing, for about a year now and her favourite tune, according to her owners, is Bach Minuet in G.

Click here to read the full article and watch the videos.

More Animal-Esque Artists and Albums from the 2007 Billboard Critics’ Picks

December 27, 2007

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THOM DUFFY
Billboard special features editor

5. Sarah Pedinotti, “City Bird” (Self-released)
An aptly-titled creative leap for this promising young singer/songwriter who staged her first showcase tour of New York and Boston this year.

TOM FERGUSON
Billboard deputy global editor

6. Joe Ely, “Happy Songs From Rattlesnake Gulch” (Rounder)
Back on a rockier tack, Ely remains one of the all-time Americana greats.

BEN FRENCH
Billboard contributor

1. Of Montreal, “Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?” (Polyvinyl)
The best divorce album since Bruce Springsteen’s “Tunnel of Love.”
6. The Besnard Lakes, “The Besnard Lakes Are the Dark Horse” (Jagjaguwar)
“For Agent 13” is the song of the year.
9. Andrew Bird, “Armchair Apocrypha” (Fat Possum)
As if Jeff Buckley sat down with Radiohead.
10. Ween, “La Cucaracha” (Rounder)
Seems like they can’t help putting out great record after great record.

GARY GRAFF
Billboard/Billboard.com con
tributor
2. Ryan Adams, “Easy Tiger” (Lost Highway)
Adams and his Cardinals hit a new career high and now everybody wants a “Halloweenhead.”

RON HART
Billboard.com contributor

10. Bill Callahan, “Woke on a Whale Heart” (Drag City)
A beautiful collection of robust, romantic black country rock that stands tall.

KATIE HASTY
Billboard.com associate editor

5. Animal Collective, “Strawberry Jam” (Domino)
Beastly.

JESSICA LETKEMANN
Billboard.com editor

1. Eddie Vedder, “Into the Wild” (J)
2. Pearl Jam, “Live at the Gorge” (Monkeywrench)
9. Iron & Wine, “The Shepherd’s Dog” (Sub Pop)

KERRI MASON
Billboard contributor

5. Simian Mobile Disco, “Attack Sustain Release” (Interscope)
Fun invades minimal.

This list will continue for yet another day. Look for more tomorrow.

Complete list, including non-Animal-esque artists & albums, can be found .

Cat Power

December 27, 2007

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Cat Power (get it? Cat power? Supercat?) always pops up on the music blogosphere – and Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo will cause her to pop up also, since she had the forethought to rename herself “Cat.”

Cat Power warms up ‘Jukebox’ for mid-winter tour

cat-power-jukebox.jpgCat Power–a.k.a. Chan Marshall–returns to the road for a short tour in February to support her forthcoming second album of cover songs, “Jukebox.”The singer, who will kick off a six-city outing Feb. 6 in New York City, will once again have the services of her Dirty Delta Blues Band backing her up. The group, which also appears on the new album, consists of Judah Bauer (from Blues Explosion), Gregg Foreman (Delta 72), Erik Paparazzi (Lizard Music), and Jim White (from Dirty Three).

Read more here.

A review of her 2006 release, “The Greatest,” can be found here.

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There’s little in Marshall’s past releases, which drew heavily on American folk music, country and the blues, to suggest the straightforward beauty of ‘The Greatest’. A notoriously withdrawn singer-songwriter, she sounds almost upbeat on many of the tracks here, her smoky voice finding a remarkable setting amongst the Memphis horns, funky string arrangements and smooth backing vocals which populate this record. While Marshall sings songs of loss and longing, beguiling rhythms sugar-coat the bitter pill and there’s an unmistakable swing to ‘The Greatest’, especially on ‘Could We’ and closing track ‘Love and Communication’.

Intrigued? You can also check Cat Power out on MySpace, or visit her official site.

Also, here’s her upcoming tour schedule:

JANUARY
monday 21 – Paris, FR – Bataclan
sunday 27 – London, UK – Shepherds Bush Empire
FEBRUARY
wednesday 6 – New York, NY – Terminal 5
thursday 7 – Boston, MA – Orpheum Theater
friday 8 – Philadelphia, PA – Starlight Ballroom
saturday 9 – Toronto, ON – Kool Haus
sunday 10 – Chicago, IL – Vic Theater
thursday 11 – Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue

2007 Billboard Critics’ Picks includes Animal-Esque Artists and Albums

December 26, 2007

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As you probably know, Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo LOVES music about or referencing animals – in artist name, album name, song title, or lyrics – even record label name, if I’m feeling particularly inclusive. So here’s a list of the Animal-Esque music (and the guys who chose it) that made it to the 2007 Billboard Critics’ Picks.

MICHAEL D. AYERS
Billboard.com contributor

1. Panda Bear, “Person Pitch” (Paw Tracks)
Timeless.
10. Black Dice, “Load Blown” (Paw Tracks)
Warped.

JOHN BENSON
Billboard.com contributor

8. Ryan Adams, “Easy Tiger” (Lost Highway)
Channeling his inner Todd Rundgren, Adams offers his version of ’70s rock.

LARS BRANDLE
Billboard global news editor

1. Simian Mobile Disco, “Attack Decay Sustain Release” (Interscope)
Dance Is Not Dead.
8. The Pigeon Detectives, “Wait for Me” (Dance to the Radio)
Few Brit bands made a more-triumphant arrival in 2007.

SUSAN BUTLER
Billboard senior correspondent, legal & publishing

1. Seal, “System” (Warner Bros.)
Just when you think Seal couldn’t possibly release an album better than the last one, he does … again.

DIANE COETZER
Billboard contributor

10. The Cat Empire, “Two Shoes” (Universal/Virgin/Velour)
Sunny pop delivered with subversive charm.


JONATHAN COHEN
Billboard senior editor

2. Ween, “La Cucaracha” (Rounder/Cortex)
We had the best time at your party / The wife and I thank you very much.
5. Rob Crow, “Living Well” (Temporary Residence Ltd.)
Passions dying, oceans forming / Feel the sun on the way to fall.
9. Deerhunter, “Cryptograms” (Kranky)
The weeks flew by / Before I knew, I was awake.
Top tunes: “Band Of Horses; “The Garden,”

MARIEL CONCEPCION
Billboard.com associate editor

10. Robin Thicke, “The Evolution of Robin Thicke” (Interscope)

I’ll continue this list later on in the week.

The Vancouver Humane Society has issued its recommended top 10 New Year’s resolutions to make life better for animals

December 26, 2007

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Here are the society’s 10 suggestions:

– Don’t buy eggs from caged hens. If you choose to buy eggs, buy certified organic eggs instead. They’re guaranteed to be free-range and have the highest welfare standards (www.chickenout.ca).

– If you’re looking for a companion animal, adopt a homeless animal from a local shelter. Don’t buy exotic pets or animals sold in pet stores or by breeders.

– Eat less meat, starting with one meat-free dinner a week – or, better yet, go vegetarian!

– Get your dog/cat spayed or neutered and tell everyone who has a pet to do the same.

– Don’t patronize zoos, animal circuses, rodeos or any other event exploiting animals.

– Don’t buy fur – not even fur trim.

– Switch to cruelty-free and non-animal-tested products.

– Become a supporter of an animal charity.

– Report animal cruelty to the ASPCA.

– Do something kind for animals every day – take your neighbour’s dog for walk, write a letter to the editor supporting animals, hug your cat.

Click here to read the full article.

This is another one of those posts that I may or may not personally agree with, but feel that the information should be available for discourse. For example, I don’t believe that zoos and rodeos inherently exploit animals, and I myself do not choose to be a vegetarian. But like I’ve said before, one of the major goals of Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo is to provide a starting-point for discussing animal-related issues.

San Francisco police probe fatal zoo attack

December 26, 2007

Wed Dec 26, 2007 11:35pm GMT
(Recasts, adds victim identity, details, byline)
By Jim Christie

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SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 26 (Reuters) – San Francisco police on Wednesday investigated whether a Siberian tiger had help in escaping its zoo habitat before it killed a teenager and injured two other people on Christmas Day.

Police told a news conference at the San Francisco Zoo that they were treating the city-run facility as a crime scene. Investigators are looking into whether the tiger, which had mauled a zoo employee last year, had been taunted before its rampage.

Police also indicated they were considering whether someone might have let the 9-year-old tiger, known as Tatiana, out of its exhibit.

Police shot and killed the tiger after it turned toward them as they attempted to divert its attention from one of the injured victims on the ground.

Zoo spokeswoman Lora LaMarca said zoo officials could not comment on how the tiger got out of its habitat, a grotto surrounded by a 15-foot (4.5 meter) moat and 20-foot (6 meter) wall.

“It is an ongoing police investigation and it is still being looked into,” LaMarca said.

San Francisco’s medical examiner identified the victim of the fatal attack as Carlos Sousa Jr., 17, of San Jose, California. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The two other victims, 19- and 23-year-old brothers from San Jose, were reported in stable condition at a San Francisco hospital.

The tiger attacked Sousa in front of its enclosure and the the brothers about 300 yards from it.

The same tiger had injured a zoo worker during a public feeding last December. The zoo made safety upgrades and recently resumed the public feedings. (Reporting by Jim Christie; Editing by Bill Trott)

Article found here.

A Christmas Greeting from yours truly

December 24, 2007

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Hello, loyal Kitty Mowmow’s Animal Expo reader.  I hope you are having a very happy Christmas Eve.  If you don’t celebrate Christmas, I would like to extend to you wishes for a happy 25th of December Eve.

If you didn’t get to listen to Kitty Mowmo’s Animal Expo’s Christmas episode a few weeks ago, you can find the playlist posted here.  It’s full of Christmas music by what I like to call Animal-esque artists (they include a reference to animals in their names).  Some of the Animal-esque artists are, in fact, animals.  I included two of what I think are the best songs from Jingle Dogs and Jingle Cats, which, as you probably know, are made from the barkings of real dogs and the meowings of real cats.  As usual, the playlist also includes songs that reference animals in the title, lyrics, or album.

The Christmas episode was a surprisingly easy show to put together, partly because there are so many Christmas songs that include animals.  Animals have special roles in the Christmas story, some of which can be explained here.  I’ve extracted the animal-specific ones:

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Camels
Camels are the animals the wisemen rode following the star to where Jesus was born.

Donkeys, Lambs, and Cows
Donkeys, lambs, and cows were animals close to Jesus at the time of his birth.

Manger
A cow’s manger is the place where Baby Jesus slept.

Reindeer
Reindeer were the animals chosen by St. Nicholas to pull his sleigh. His reindeers’ names are Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen. Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer is the most famous.

Shepherds
Shepherds tend sheep. They came to the manger to honor Baby Jesus.

Well, the coffee shop in which I was working is closing early for Christmas – and rightfully so, they should be home with their families – so I need to end this post and scoot.  Merry Christmas!

Sheriff’s deputies bust Chaparral cockfight Saturday

December 24, 2007

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Law enforcement, aided by humane society officials, broke up a cockfighting event in Chaparral Saturday night, resulting in the arrest of four people and the confiscation of 100 birds.

The Otero County Sheriff’s Department and the Attorney General’s Animal Cruelty Task Force, with assistance from Animal Protection of New Mexico and The Humane Society of the United States, raided the Otero Game Club’s “Christmas Derby” cockfighting event, according to a news release from the Humane Society.

Click here to read the full article.

Feeding Wildlife in Winter

December 24, 2007

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Winter is arriving in the Northern Hemisphere, and with it come hard times for many animal populations. When snow covers the ground, ruminants such as deer have nothing to browse on. A layer of ice means that seeds are kept fast from hungry birds. Even careful calendar watchers, such as squirrels and bears, can be taken by surprise by the first blasts of cold. A winter of regular duration can be a test for animals; a long winter can be a disaster.

Such times bring out the Samaritan in many concerned people, who set out food to help the animals see the season through. Wildlife biologists warn, however, that such acts of kindness may not, in the end, be so kind. They warn that feeding wildlife at any time of year can result in problems, most of them unintended but very often fatal.

Read the rest of this informative article by clicking here.