Tag: Wild

Breaking! Despite Public Outrage, Namibia Moves Forward With Their Controversial Plan To Auction Off 170 Wild Elephants

This morning, WAN was shocked to read the official statement from the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism of Namibia, we were appalled by the attacks against true conservationists and the animal welfare community who has worked so hard to protect and save 170 wild elephants from being auctioned off by the Namibian Government for so-called ‘conservation’ and financial gain. 

Reportedly, while the details of the elephant auction have yet to be publically shared, the travesty took place on January 29th despite over 100,000 concerned petitioners who have urged the Namibian government and the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism to stop its plan.

The population of Namibia’s elephants is estimated to be only 24,000, but in comparison to neighboring countries like Botswana, which has 130,000, Zimbabwe, which has 80,000, and Zambia, which has 50,000, Namibia’s elephant population is still very low despite their claim that it has tripled since 1995.

Conservationists argue that the government’s numbers are inflated and fail to factor in elephant migration. They estimate that between 73%-84% of the government’s quoted elephant population figure consists of ‘trans-boundary’ elephants, those moving between Namibia, Angola, Zambia, and Botswana. They put the resident elephant population in Namibia at only 5,688. They are worried that with 170 elephants being auctioned off, that Namibia will be losing 3% of its elephant population.

The Namibian Government said in a statement that the ‘off-take’ of the 170 wild Namibian elephants is extremely ‘conservative’ and below sustainable ‘off-take’ levels. The government does not define the term ‘off-take’ or specify what will happen to the elephants who are auctioned off. This leads us to believe that the elephants will be auctioned off to trophy hunters.

The Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism of Namibia announced in a statement on February 1st, that the money made from the auction will be deposited into the Game Product Trust Fund this week to be used for so-called wildlife ‘conversation’ and rural development projects. There has also been speculation that the government is making room for extensive oil drilling in Namibia’s Okavango Basin.

Meanwhile, elephants being one of the most intelligent species on the planet with very strong family bonds and groups will be torn apart at the hands of the Namibian government. Tragically, bull elephants, mothers, and their babies, will all be killed for money and greed.

The Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism is defending the elephant auction as a way to mitigate human-wildlife conflict, to control their small elephant population, and raise money for ‘conservation.’ Ironic, considering a 2019 bribery scandal resulting in the imprisonment of the Ministers of Justice and Fisheries has raised major concerns about the controversial auction.

Shockingly, Namibia was among three African nations denied permission to sell off its stock of ivory by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Those who vetoed the appeal said they feared the one-off sale would create a sharp increase in the demand for ivory and a spike in poaching. 

It is unfortunate that the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism of Namibia made false accusations in a statement on February 1st, about conservationists and the animal welfare community. Regardless of the unwarranted attack, we must continue to fight to protect Africa’s last iconic species for the future and health of our planet.

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Breaking! Court Rules That The Last Seven Critically Endangered Captive Red Wolves In North Carolina Must Be Released Into The Wild

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina ruled in a case brought by the Southern Environmental Law Center that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must develop a plan by March 1, 2021, to resume its longstanding and successful practice of releasing captive red wolves into the Red Wolf Recovery Area in North Carolina. The case was brought on behalf of the Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife, and Animal Welfare Institute.

As reported by WAN last month, there are tragically as few as seven red wolves remaining in the wild today. The court order temporarily prohibits the agency from implementing its recent policy change that would prevent the release of captive wolves into the wild.

On November 16, 2020, the Southern Environmental Law Center sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina for violations of the Endangered Species Act. This was caused by new, illegal agency policies that bar the use of proven management measures to save wild red wolves on behalf of Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife, and Animal Welfare Institute. It filed for a motion for preliminary injunction in the case on November 19, 2020.

“With only seven known red wolves left in the wild, it is past time for the Fish and Wildlife Service to resume conservation measures that it used successfully for decades,” Sierra Weaver, senior attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center which represents the conservation organizations, said in a statement. “The court was clear that the agency has to stop managing red wolves into extinction and instead take meaningful action to rebuild the wild red wolf population in North Carolina.”

“We are grateful that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will finally abide by its responsibility to protect this critically endangered wolf,” stated Ben Prater, Southeast program director at Defenders of Wildlife. “Releasing wolves into the wild is a common sense, science-backed approach to boost this population and stave off the red wolf’s extinction. While the species has a long way to go, this is a major step in the right direction.”

“This is a vital ruling that will breathe new life into the Red Wolf Recovery Program,” noted Johanna Hamburger, director and senior staff attorney for AWI’s terrestrial wildlife program. “The Court held that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s passive efforts to manage the wild red wolf population are woefully inadequate to recover the species. By ordering the agency to once again release wolves from captivity into the wild population, the Court is requiring much-needed action to prevent the continued downward spiral of this species.”

“The Red Wolf Coalition is grateful that the court saw the importance of releasing captive red wolves to the wild population,” said Kim Wheeler, Executive Director of Red Wolf Coalition. “These additional red wolves will add genetic diversity and breeding opportunities to the wild population in northeastern North Carolina.”

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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WAN Exclusive With Filmmaker James Kleinert, The Warrior Who Is Saving America’s Last Wild Horses

Tragically, 455 of America’s wild horses recently became the latest victims unfairly targeted by helicopters during yet another controversial Bureau of Land Management (BLM) roundup under the guise of ‘herd management.’

Not surprisingly, little information about this travesty, which took place between December 5th and December 18th within and outside of the herd areas located in Lincoln County, Nevada, has been shared publicly.

According to James Kleinert, who has dedicated his life to saving America’s wild horses and has also produced several award-winning documentaries about their plight, the lack of information by the BLM is intentional.

WAN had the opportunity to talk with Kleinert about his decades-long career advocating for wild horses as the oil, gas, mining, and cattle industries continue to take away their legal and environmental protections. This is one of the many issues Kleinert addresses in his latest documentary series, Mustangs & Renegades.

“I never intended it to be a political film, but there are all kinds of corruption at the BLM,” Kleinert told WAN, sadly sharing that the BLM only adopts a small percentage of the captured horses after they are savagely ripped away from their families during these brutal roundups. The majority of the wild horses are sent to what Kleinert refers to as “long-term camps” or shipped to Mexico and Canada for slaughter.

As noted by Kleinert, the BLM, which makes it especially challenging to record what goes on during one of these roundups, lies about the number of horses on a range, the appropriate management levels, and the reasons why the ‘excess’ horses need to be removed.

A statement released by the BLM regarding the December roundup in Nevada, claimed that, among other reasons, the wild horses were gathered because of a lack of food and water.

“If the horses on the land get sick or die after drinking polluted water, an alarm is set off which the BLM does not want to happen.” said Kleinert, explaining why former BLM Director Jim Baca, who Kleinert interviewed, called horses an indicator species.

The BLM also reportedly lets the public know about these so-called “emergency roundups” at the last minute, so that little to nothing can be done to protect the horses from them.

Kleinert’s film exposes the truth about what really happens to America’s wild horses, the truth which hurts the BLM’s public image. “The BLM seems to think that, if they can stop the filming, then…problem solved. If there’s no documentation of the violence, then the BLM can plausibly deny that it ever happened.”

“This is also about something much bigger, the complete devastation of our environment by industries, and ultimately people, who are making a living by exploiting wild horses,” stated Kleinert, who filed a lawsuit in 2015 regarding public records and legal proceedings with the Bureau of Land Management. Since the history-making judgement in 2016, Kleinert v. BLM can now be used by any citizen seeking information per the Freedom of Information Act FOIA.

“We are living out of balance and have to start living sustainably,” concluded Kleinert. whose documentaries serve as tremendous educational and awareness pieces about the plight of wild horses, burros, and the environment.

If you would like to watch the new film Mustangs & Renegades, CLICK HERE!

Call to action to Save America’s Wild Horses, HERE!

Please urge President Trump to stop the brutal campaign against America’s Wild Horses and place a moratorium on all Wild Horse & Burro round ups. Call the White House at (202) 456-1111

To help support James and his mission, please consider making a donation HERE!

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U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Sued For Failing To Protect The Last Seven Wild Red Wolves That Are On The Brink Of Extinction

On behalf of Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife, and Animal Welfare Institute, the Southern Environmental Law Center sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina recently for violations of the Endangered Species Act. The violations were caused by illegal agency policies that bar the use of proven management measures to save wild red wolves.

“The Fish and Wildlife Service is managing this species for extinction,” Sierra Weaver, senior attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center said in a statement. “Faced with a wild population of only seven known wolves left, the Fish and Wildlife Service is now claiming, without basis, that it’s not allowed to take proven, necessary measures to save the wild red wolves. The service urgently needs to restart red wolf releases from captivity, which it did regularly for 27 years.  Otherwise we’re going to lose the world’s only wild population of this wolf species.

“Under the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s mismanagement, the world’s most endangered wolf has only moved closer to extinction,” said Jason Rylander, senior endangered species counsel at Defenders of Wildlife. “We have given the service every opportunity to reverse course and supplement the last wild population of red wolves with captive releases. Sadly, with only seven collared wolves left in the wild, it’s apparent we can’t wait any longer.”

Two years ago, in November 2018, a federal court found that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had violated the Endangered Species Act by suspending proven conservation measures for wild red wolves after the Southern Environmental Law Center went to court on behalf of the same conservation organizations.

Rather than resolving those violations, the agency has doubled down on its abandonment of those measures and invented a new, illegal policy, that it claims does not permit it to release red wolves from the captive population into the wild. The agency also now claims that its rules do not allow the agency to address hybridization with coyotes. As a result, the world’s only population of wild red wolves is now on the brink of extinction.

No red wolf pups were born in the wild in 2019 or 2020 for the first time since 1988. Meanwhile, the captive red wolf population continues to increase with more new pups being born every spring, even as the agency refuses to reinstate red wolf releases.

“We hope the USFWS will look closely at its red wolf conservation policies and enact the necessary changes that will make the survival of wild red wolves a priority.” stated Kim Wheeler, Executive Director of the Red Wolf Coalition.

Following successful conservation efforts and reintroductions from captive populations, America’s red wolves rebounded from extinction in the wild to about 100 individuals in 1980. That population level persisted for approximately a decade in eastern North Carolina. Since 2018, however, the wild red wolf population has plummeted by 70%.

“The ESA requires USFWS to carry out programs for the conservation of the red wolf and to ensure that its actions do not jeopardize the species’ continued existence,” said Johanna Hamburger, director and senior staff attorney for the Animal Welfare Institute’s terrestrial wildlife program. “The agency is failing on both counts. The current lack of action, by USFWS’ own admission, will cause the extinction of the wild red wolf population unless the agency immediately restarts conservation efforts.”

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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IFAW Along With Local Partners Release Rescued Jaguar Back Into The Wild After Being Hit By A Car In Mexico

In a collaboration between government authorities, the scientific sector, local communities and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), a juvenile jaguar has been successfully released back into the wild after being critically injured following a vehicle strike near Chetumal, Mexico, on June 11th.

The injured jaguar was transferred to the Payo Obispo Zoo to begin the rehabilitation process where he was monitored and cared for by an extensive multi-disciplinary team that later named him ‘Covi.’

Upon examination, it was discovered that Covi, estimated to be approximately 18 months old, had sustained a fracture to his left shoulder blade and additional lacerations to his body. Though his prognosis was still good, critical to Covi’s recovery was the team’s ability to monitor and care for him (following the fracture) with minimal human interaction, made possible by a network of cameras and the use of spacious enclosures to promote more natural behavior.

“This was the first case of rescue, rehabilitation, and release of an injured jaguar in the region, a major conservation success on multiple levels,” Joaquin de la Torre Pence, IFAW’s Regional Director for Latin America told WAN. “Achieving rehabilitation with minimal human interaction was a critical way to prepare the jaguar for reintroduction back into the wild. As jaguars are considered an endangered species with populations experiencing significant decline in many of their natural habitats. This rescue and release was indeed a memorable milestone for the conservation of this species.”

An advisory group was set up to monitor the rehabilitation process, including: National Alliance for Jaguar Conservation (ANCJ), the Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA), the State of Quintana Roo Attorney for Environmental Protection (PPA), the Biodiversity and Natural Protected Areas of the State of Quintana Roo (IBANQROO), and IFAW.

The group determined that the jaguar could indeed be released back into the wild once he began exhibiting signs of a full recovery. In conjunction with the National Commission for Natural Protected Areas (CONANP), it was decided that the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve would provide the most suitable release location given its abundant prey, access to water, low risk of human conflict, and the general support of the local Xhazil Ejido community.

The day of the release

In the dawn hours of September 22nd, the medical team, which included Dr. Erika Flores, IFAW’s Emergency Response and Animal Rescue Coordinator for Latin America, prepared Covi for the 85-mile journey to the Sian Ka’an Reserve. A small team was in place to film the event. Medical tests were conducted and the young male was darted and fitted with a satellite collar that would be used to track future movements after him release. He was then placed inside a wooden crate prepared for transport in IFAW’s Animal Rescue vehicle, escorted by other vehicles representing all authorities involved in the rescue.

Upon reaching the outskirts of the release area, the team transferred the jaguar to an all-terrain truck to continue the nearly 10-mile journey on muddy roads to the entrance of the reserve. Taking turns in groups of six, the team set out on foot to carry the crate another 400 yards deeper into the jungle to the release site, where a pulley and rope release system was set up to ensure a safe release distance. Biologist and team leader Roger Braga, Director of Payo Obispo Zoopulled the rope that signaled the animal’s release. Slowly, Covi emerged and calmly began walking towards the jungle and disappeared.

A monumental success for jaguar conservation

“The release of this jaguar was a milestone example of coordinated collaboration between Federal, State, and Municipal authorities, along with a committed local community and NGOs like IFAW,’ said Flores in a statement. “As a team, we all understand the conservation value of this young jaguar, because we know individual animals matter. We are delighted to have played a role in this successful reintroduction back into the wild where he is now able to thrive once again.”

The population of jaguars in Mexico is estimated at only 4,000 individuals. According to National Alliance for Jaguar Conservation, the population of jaguars in the Yucatán Peninsula is the largest and healthiest given the abundance of prey and other biological conditions. The jaguar faces serious threats resulting from habitat loss and fragmentation, vehicle strikes, conflict due to proximity with humans and domestic animals, as well as the persistent threat of the illegal wildlife trade.

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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Sea Shepherd Carries Out Critical Operation Retrieving Ghost Nets To Save Less Than 10 Vaquita Remaining In The Wild; The World’s Most Endangered Marine Mammal

Last week marked the completion of a collaborative effort aimed at removing abandoned fishing gear from the habitat of the critically endangered vaquita porpoise.

The program, which is funded by the Government of Mexico, has been operating since 2016. Every year, a group of small-scale fishers from the community of San Felipe in the Upper Gulf of California undertakes seasonal ghost net removal operations in the Vaquita Refuge. Sea Shepherd provides support by recovering the nets located by the fishers, ensuring that they never find their way back into the marine ecosystem.

“Ghost nets” are abandoned fishing nets that have been discarded or lost at sea. These inactive nets pose a deadly threat by continuing to kill marine wildlife for as long as the nets remain in the ocean. Whales, turtles, dolphins, and vaquitas are all vulnerable to entanglement in these ​deserted nets.

A group of 35 local fishers, working from 17 small boats, systematically search the Vaquita Refuge in a grid pattern to locate discarded fishing gear. Following GPS coordinates, the boats drag modified hooks under the water to detect submerged nets. As the vessels move over the nets, the hooks become entangled in the fishing gear. Once a net is detected, the fishermen mark the area, and Sea Shepherd’s Sharpie moves in to retrieve the gear.

This season, the operation successfully retrieved 20 nets from the Vaquita Refuge between September 12th and October 31st, 2020.

“There are many more nets in the water than vaquitas,” said Andrea Bonilla, Sea Shepherd’s Ghost Net Project Coordinator in a statement.

Scientists estimate that only 6-19 vaquitas remain in the wild, and the primary threat to the survival of the critically endangered species is entanglement in fishing gear. The rare species of porpoise is endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, an area rife with poaching due to the illegal totoaba trade.

The Vaquita Refuge is a UNESCO-recognized and federally-protected area in which gillnet fishing is banned.

Sea Shepherd’s Sharpie remains in the Vaquita Refuge upon completion of this operation and is working with Mexican authorities to monitor the area, prevent poaching, and remove both active gillnets and ghost nets from the region.

“The last days of the Ghost Net Project turned up no nets, which means that the area has been effectively cleared of these abandoned, invisible curtains of death,” said Peter Hammarstedt, Sea Shepherd’s Director of Campaigns. “Thanks to the work of local fishermen, the Museo de la Ballena and Sharpie crew, we are starting Operation Milagro VII with a blank slate, ready to confiscate any new illegal fishing gear set to target the totoaba – and indirectly, the vaquita.”

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WAN Talks With World Renowned Elephant Advocate Sangita Iyer About Virtual Festival On November 7th & 8th That Will Help Save Odisha’s Last 2,000 Wild Elephants

A first-of-its-kind virtual weekend festival, The Forgotten Elephants of Odisha, is scheduled to take place on November 7th and 8th. The enlightening and entertaining event, featuring guest of honor Dr. Jane Goodall, features film screenings, live music, a silent auction, and much more; all to raise awareness and funds to protect the remaining 2,000 Asian elephants of Odisha, India.

WAN talked with noted wildlife filmmaker and the Founder of Voice for Asian Elephants Society (VFAES), Sangita Iyer, about the plight of the elephants of Odisha, and the impactful ways they will use the funds raised from the event to save them.

Iyer also shared how the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the event morphing from what was a one-time screening of the acclaimed documentary Gods In Shackles, which she produced and directed, into a two-day festival that people from around the world can now experience virtually.

“This whole event is because the COVID-19 pandemic has thrown a curve ball, not only to people, but the elephants of Odisha,” Iyer, who is also a National Geographic Explorer, a broadcast journalist, and a biologist, told WAN. “The increased anxiety and economic pressure resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has been like tossing a match on tinder, making an already dire situation for the elephants even more perilous.”

Tragically, an estimated 60 elephants across India have recently been killed by electrocution, poisoning, or poaching for the illicit ivory trade. More than 20 of the elephants that were killed during the pandemic were in Odisha, which Iyer describes as “a graveyard for elephants.”

“Electrocution has been an issue for over a decade, but the past three years it has intensified. Now, even more because of COVID-19,” shared Iyer, explaining that the poor elephants are homeless and hungry due to human encroachment on their natural habitat.

Sadly, an estimated 78% of wildlife habitat in Odisha has been decimated, leaving the elephants with nowhere to hide, starving, in search of food. Already threatened due to the pandemic, the elephants are now exposed even more to the brutalities of human-animal conflict, as locals, many whom are farmers, remain at home and afraid that they will lose their livelihoods.

“People have encroached onto their sacred land and exploited forest resources. Additionally, climate change, exacerbated by human actions is further deteriorating the forest ecosystems, leaving these elephants with nothing inside the forests. Homeless and starved, these elephants venture into human dwellings and croplands for food, where they are getting electrocuted, poisoned, and hunted down,” explained Iyer. “Male elephants and pregnant females have been the victims of an endless COVID lockdown, as people’s lives have been ravaged and they are spilling over their anger and hatred onto the innocent elephants.”

To understand the severity of the problem, Iyer shared some staggering statistics with WAN, including that 1.38 billion people currently live in India. In Odisha alone, there are approximately 45 million people, many living along the forest fringes and corridors that elephants have established over thousands of years. That is why the elephants and humans in Odisha remain in a constant and often-times life-or-death struggle for limited resources.

It is unfathomable. India is three times smaller than the United States yet has three times as many people.

Realizing that more needs to be done to help the elephants in Odisha, Voice for Asian Elephants Society (VFAES) partnered with the Wildlife Protection Society of India (WPSI) to put an end to this travesty.

VFAES and WPSI will work with a team of local conservationists to steer knowledge-driven elephant conservation actions to some of the most vulnerable regions of the state. Over the long term, Iyer and her team aim to secure a future for Odisha’s forgotten elephants, by promoting a harmonious and respectful human elephant co-existence.

Funds raised by the November 7th and 8th virtual event will be used to help save 2,000 wild elephants in Odisha, by hiring native people to monitor and implement numerous strategies including: 

  1. Preventing electrocution by fixing sagging wires and removing wire traps, many which are on farms illegally.

  2. Monitoring important corridors for elephants to travel as they are migratory animals.

  3. Recruiting rangers to monitor the area, for poaching, and to alleviate more senseless deaths of elephants.

  4. Raising awareness and educating locals, including school children, about the plight of the elephants in Odisha.

Learn more about the silent auction, which begins October 24th, and bid on the more than 100 available items, HERE!

More information about The Forgotten Elephants of Odisha weekend festival on November 7th and 8th can be found, HERE!

Tickets, ranging from $15 to $100 are also available for purchase, HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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Tragically, Only 9 Critically Endangered Red Wolves Remain In The Wild; A New Lawsuit Is Pushing For A Recovery Plan To Save Them

Photo by B. Bartel, USFWS

According to a legal agreement reached as a result of a lawsuit by the Center for Biological Diversity, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must update its plan for saving critically endangered red wolves in the next two and a half years. Red wolves, which are native to the southeastern United States, have sadly dwindled to only nine known individuals in the wild, living in the eastern part of North Carolina.

“With only nine wolves known to remain in the wild, the red wolf desperately needed this good news,” Collette Adkins, carnivore conservation director at the Center, said in a statement. “The science shows that the red wolf can be saved, and I am hopeful that a new recovery plan will put the species back on the road to recovery.”

The agreement, approved on October 2nd by a North Carolina federal court, requires the Fish and Wildlife Service to complete a final revised recovery plan for red wolves by February 28, 2023.

This victory is the result of the Center’s 2019 lawsuit, which challenged the Fish and Wildlife Service’s failure to revise the outdated recovery plan from 1990. The Center filed its suit after the Service failed to follow through on its commitment to update the decades-old recovery plan by the end of 2018.

The Endangered Species Act requires that the agency prepare plans that serve as roadmaps to species recovery, identifying measures needed to ensure conservation and survival, such as reintroductions.

Last year, the Center released a report identifying five potential reintroduction sites that together could support nearly 500 breeding pairs of red wolves. All the sites are on public lands in: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia. 

The Fish and Wildlife Service has not taken steps to reintroduce red wolves elsewhere and has stopped taking action, such as widespread sterilization of coyotes to prevent hybrid animals from harming the gene pool which is necessary to conserve the remaining wild population.

“Time is running out to save red wolves and government foot-dragging has only made the problem worse,” continued Adkins. “It’s frustrating that we’ve had to sue time and again to get action. Hopefully this win finally gets these vulnerable wolves the help they need.”

The Fish and Wildlife Service is expected to release a draft revised red wolf recovery plan next year. The public will have an opportunity to comment on the draft plan.

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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France Announces Multi-Faceted Plan To Ban Wild Animals In Traveling Circuses, End Mink Farming & The Confinement Of Dolphins & Orcas In Captivity

In a news conference today, Barbara Pompili, France’s Minister of Ecological Transition, announced numerous measures to improve the welfare of captive wildlife throughout the country.

The multi-faceted plan includes gradual bans on wild animals in traveling circuses, ending mink farming, and banning the confinement of dolphins and orcas in unsuitable dolphinariums.

While some of these steps may take years, beginning immediately, three marine parks in France will not be allowed to import or breed dolphins or orcas any longer. Solutions for all of the once-captive animals will be determined “on a case-by-case basis.”

Sadly, the ban does not apply to wild animals in other permanent shows or zoos.

“Big cats, elephants, killer whales, dolphins, or even mink, it is time to open a new era in our relationship with these animals,” said Pompili, who also noted that they should be treated with respect and integrity.

The French government also plans to implement an 8 million-euro ($9.2 million) package to assist people working in traveling circuses and marine parks to find employment in more humane industries

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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