Saturday, September 29, 2007

Bobcat licenses issued in PA

Bobcat licenses issued in PA

 

 

About one in six applicants for a bobcat hunting and trapping license received one during last week's drawing. The Game Commission awarded 1,010 licenses from among more than 6,000 applications. Of the 1,010 permits awarded, 44 were awarded to females and 65 to applicants under the age of 17.

 

Endeavor News

 

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Ph: 814-486-1400

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http://www.endeavornews.com/news/2007/0929/outdoors/050.html

Friday, September 28, 2007

How China is Trying to Justify Farming Tigers

How China is Trying to Justify Farming Tigers

 

Siberian tigers move south to make some money

 

By Wu Yong (China Daily)

Updated: 2007-09-28 07:51

 

 

Fifteen Siberian tigers are traveling a long way from Harbin in Northeast China to Xiamen in the south - to help their families and relatives live a better life back home.

 

The Harbin-based Siberian Tiger Park signed a five-year contract with Xiamen Huzhilin Company earlier this year for an undisclosed amount; and the tigers will be on view in the coastal city from October 1, the first day of the week-long National Day holidays.

 

To take care of the tigers, two zookeepers from Harbin will be with them throughout the five years, said Bian Shifeng, a park employee.

 

It is not the first time the Harbin park has leased out tigers to ease its financial strain - more than 100 tigers can be found in Dalian, Shenyang and Taiyuan zoos, and generate about 1 million yuan ($133,000) each year, a source close to the park said.

 

The park, founded in 1996, is one of the major Siberian tiger breeding bases in the country. In the past decade, their number has jumped from eight to more than 800.

 

While preservation of the precious species is ensured, the increasing number of big cats has led to another conundrum: How to feed them.

 

Wang Ligang, the park's general manger, said the financial deficit is rising despite local government support.

 

A tiger eats 5 kg of meat every day and its annual expense covering food and medical care is about 30,000 yuan ($3,993).

 

Which means the park has to fork out more than 20 million yuan ($2.67 million) each year, according to Liu Dan, chief engineer of the park.

 

Wang said the park has three sources of income: ticket sales, leasing out the tigers and government funding. "But it is far from enough."

 

The price of pork and other meat rose more than 80 percent in the first eight months of this year, driven mostly by increases in animal feed prices, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

 

Sources familiar with the conditions in the park said tigers are now fed chicken instead of beef to cut costs.

 

Cao Liang, director of the China Wildlife Conservation Association, said tiger leasing is justified as long as approval is secured from the local governments. "The best protection for many tigers (in Harbin) is to provide enough food for them," Cao said.

 

"The only solution is to lift the ban on tiger trade. The trade of bones from tigers that are bred in captivity and die of natural causes will not affect the conservation of wild tigers. This can help raise funds for living tigers and also give relief to patients," Wang said.

 

In Chinese medicine, tiger parts are used as cures for illnesses ranging from colds to rheumatism.

 

In China, about 50 tigers live in the wilderness and around 5,000 in captivity. Some 1,000 are born each year in farms and about the same number have died of natural causes in recent years.

 

http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2007-09/28/content_6141247.htm

 

Sign our petition asking the Chinese Government to stop the farming of tigers for their parts here:

 

http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/alert/?alertid=9952801&type=CU

 

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Asiatic Lions: New reserve on the anvil

Asiatic Lions: New reserve on the anvil

 

NDTV.com By Jay Mazoomdaar

 

 

Gujarat the only home of the Asiatic lion had until now not agreed to give

any of them for a proposed sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh, even though the

lions in Gir were under threat from poachers, epidemics and natural

disasters.

 

But now the Centre has prepared a fresh blueprint for a backup that won't

require Gujarat to release any of its lions.

 

The 11-year wait for a second home for the endangered Asiatic lion at

Kuno-Palpur in Madhya Pradesh will soon be over.

 

The National Tiger Conservation Authority and the Central Zoo Authority have

a fresh plan ready.

 

''We will select pure bred Gir lions from different zoos and these first

generation lions will breed in a big natural enclosure which is already

there at Kuno-Palpur. We will release herbivores for the second generation

lions so that they can hunt and get naturalised. In this process, the third

generation lions should be fit to be released in the wild outside the

enclosure,'' said Dr Rajesh Gopal, Member Secretary, NTCA.

 

The blueprint will be discussed at the next meeting of the National Board

for Wildlife on October 8. Once approved, it will be about four years before

the third generation lions can be released in the wild.

 

But the initiative may raise eyebrows, considering India has opposed the

Chinese model of releasing captive-bred tigers into the wild.

 

''We are identifying pure gene lions and they will be kept off display and

bred in natural enclosures with prey species. And the tigers in Chinese

farms are victims of severe inbreeding and can hardly be called tigers,''

said Dr B R Sharma, Member Secretary, CZA.

 

Kuno-Palpur was selected in 1996 as a second home for the lions but the

Gujarat government refused to part with them. It was the threat to the lions

in Gir that finally got the authorities moving.

 

''Forget poaching, even an epidemic can wipe out an isolated population. So

the idea of a second reserve at Kuno but the Gujarat government never

agreed. Now we don't need to wait for them anymore,'' said Dr Rajesh Gopal,

Member Secretary, NTCA.

 

If all goes well, the Kuno-Palpur sanctuary will be the Asiatic lion's

second home by 2011, unless the Modi government now objects to the very idea

of having lions outside Gujarat.

 

http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/story.aspx?id=NEWEN20070026916

 

Colorado law puts focus on male lions

Colorado law puts focus on male lions

 

Education course helps identify sex of big cats

By Kevin Woster, Journal staff

Mountain lion hunters in Colorado must now pass an online education and identification course to get a hunting permit, which advocates believe helps reduce the number of female lions killed during the season.

 

 

Wendy Keefover-Ring of Sinapu, a Boulder-based wildlife advocacy group, said lion advocates worked for six years to win approval of a state law requiring the course, which was ultimately supported by hunting outfitters in that state. The course helps hunters differentiate between female and male lions based on the size of their tracks and strides and color patterns on certain parts of the body, Keefover-Ring said.

 

Because most lion hunting in Colorado is done with hounds, lions are often pushed up trees or onto rock outcroppings or cliffs before being shot, she said. That gives hunters an opportunity to identify males and females.

 

Those hound hunts also often involve situations and conditions where tracks are discernible, which gives hunters another indicator of the sex of the animal they are after, Keefover-Ring said. With the education course, available at online at wildlife.state.co.us/Hunting/HunterEducation/MtnLionEduc, hunters can try to focus their hunting pressure on males, reducing the kill on females that are often caring for young lions, she said.

 

"We were really concerned that they were killing too many females," Keefover-Ring said. "Females may spend 10 to 24 months with their kittens, which are absolutely dependent for the first six months, at least. I don't really like hound hunting, but in the instance of lion hunting, hunters have a lot more discretion."

 

With its third mountain lion season set to begin Nov. 1, the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Commission has not yet allowed the use of hounds. GF&P personnel have argued in the past that allowing hounds would give an advantage to experienced hunters with expensive dog packs or force hunters to hire such people as paid guides.

 

GF&P spokesman John Kanta of Rapid City said hound hunters do have a better chance of distinguishing sex before they kill lions. But to make that effective, the numbers of lion permits would have to be carefully limited and basically issued to people with access to hounds, denying many state citizens a chance to hunt lions as they do now, he said.

 

"Essentially, you'd have the houndsmen and a handful of people lucky enough to draw a license and with enough money to hire a houndsman," Kanta said. "Right now, we think the season is working for us."

 

Contact Kevin Woster at 394-8413 or kevin.woster@rapidcityjournal.com

 

http://www.rapidcityjournal.com/articles/2007/09/26/news/top/doc46f9fcea2e716574180602.txt

 

Big Cat Rescue’s response: 

 

http://www.bigcatrescue.org/rescuenewscubs.htm