Connect with us

Animal World

Walruses Have Attacked & Sunk A Russian Navy Boat In The Arctic

Published

on

Walruses Have Attacked & Sunk A Russian Navy Boat In The Arctic
Photo Credit: Joel Garlich-Miller, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Wikimedia Commons)

A walrus attacked and sunk a Russian naval boat with scientists and media on board last week, according to a Russian Geographical Society press release.

All of the group’s participants were safely brought to shore, and no walruses were harmed.

The vessel was carrying researchers to Franz Josef Land, a Russian archipelago far above the Arctic Circle whose only human residents are military personnel. The trip stopped by various locales previously visited by 19th-century Arctic explorers, and its participants studied the glaciers as well as the plants and animals present on the islands.

Smaller boats brought participants between a main vessel and the islands. It was one of these crafts that a mother walrus reportedly attacked and sank, perhaps because she felt her cubs were being threatened.

Walruses are large, tusked marine mammals in the same pinniped clade as seals and sea lions. They inhabit icy Arctic waters and can weigh over a ton.

Walrus attacks on humans and their vessels aren’t uncommon, according to Lori Quakenbush, a biologist from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s Arctic Marine Mammal Program (who was not on the Russian vessel). “We have to be careful during research not to get surrounded by ice and walruses without an escape route. Calves are curious and will approach a boat, which makes the mother aggressive to defend the calf,” Quakenbush told Gizmodo in an email. “Groups of young males can also be aggressive and dangerous to small boats.”

Quakenbush explained that walrus hunters have encountered walruses puncturing skin boats with their tusks or even flipping over aluminum boats.

In short, if you ever find yourself confronted by walruses, you better have an escape plan.

If you enjoyed reading this article and want to see more like this one, we’d be humbled if you would help us spread the word and share it with your friends and family. Join us in our quest to promote free, useful information to all!

Continue Reading

Animal World

Jon Stewart Turned His 45-Acre Farm Into An Animal Sanctuary To Rescue Abused Factory Farm Animals

Published

on

Jon Stewart Turned His 45-Acre Farm Into An Animal Sanctuary To Rescue Abused Factory Farm Animals
Jon Steward Animal Farm

Primarily known for being one of the most recognized TV show hosts and comedians of our time, Jon Stewart has recently become… an animal hero. That’s right, he can now also be known for rescuing and sheltering abused animals. Jon and his wife, Tracey Stewart, already turned their 12-acre farm into the New Jersey branch of Farm Sanctuary. Then, in October 2016, they bought another farm – Hockhockson Farm in Colts Neck, New Jersey.

Jon Stewart Turned His 45-Acre Farm Into An Animal Sanctuary To Rescue Abused Factory Farm Animals

They actually decided to buy the sprawling 45-acre farm just to create this animal sanctuary. When the state finally gave them the green light to turn the farm area into an animal rescue and education center it brought tears to Tracey’s eyes. The application process took a lot longer than expected because many local residents complained about noise and traffic in the area. But in the end, their motive behind saving animals got the vote of approval from the community.

“It’s one of those things like where after you give birth you forget about the pain,” Tracey told NJ Advance Media upon testifying in front of the town’s planning board. “So right now I’m feeling really good and positive.”

Among the first animals to take up residence at their farm are two piglets, named Anna and Maybelle who were rescued from a swine factory when they fell off the cargo loader during transfer; two goats; a bull; loads of more pigs; and many other animals!

The duo loves animals so much that Tracey has even written a book titled: “Do Unto Animals: A Friendly Guide to How Animals Live, and How We Can Make Their Lives Better,” which focuses on living respectfully with many animals, like dogs, goats, and spiders.

Tracey has been vegan for a very long time. Jon, however, used to consume meat quite regularly. Tracey wrote in her book: “While I don’t eat animals, my husband does, and due to our mixed marriage, we have decided to present both diets to the kids and let them come to their own decision about how and what they want to eat.” But now even that has changed as Jon has turned vegetarian, something that surprised Tracey quite a bit. She said: “I know! It’s recent! It’s all happening! He’s nervous about saying it publicly because he doesn’t want to mess up. But he really is trying to figure out what vegetarian foods he likes, and I’m helping him with that. I’ll say to him, ‘Oh, you’re my new, sexy vegetarian boyfriend. Do you want to go to the vegan restaurant for lunch?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah!’”

Ever since Jon retired from The Daily Show, he has dedicated most of his time to caring for abused and neglected animals. As for now, the farm is still in its “nascent stage,” meaning it is not yet open to the public. Regardless, even though because it’s not open to the general public yet doesn’t mean the Stewarts haven’t been helping animals. If you’re interested in keeping up with farm life at Hockhockson Farm you can follow The Daily Squeal, which Tracey Stewart regularly updates with photos of rescued farm animals.

This article (Jon Stewart Turned His 45-Acre Farm Into An Animal Sanctuary To Rescue Abused Factory Farm Animals) was originally created for Intelligent Living and is published here under Creative Commons.

Continue Reading

Animal World

Tanzania Anti-Poaching Task Force Helps Elephant & Rhino Populations Increase

Published

on

Tanzania Anti-Poaching Task Force Helps Elephant And Rhino Populations Increase
Photo Credit: Intelligent Living

Worldwide, elephants and rhinos are classified as vulnerable and endangered. However, in Tanzania, both animals’ populations are increasing significantly. All thanks to a task force Tanzania formed to combat wildlife poaching.

Populations Rising

The government of Tanzania has declared the official numbers of the rising population of the elephants and rhinos. Since 2014 elephants have increased in population from 43,330 to over 60,000. Since 2015 rhinos have increased from only 15 to 167.

 Credit: Gary Bembridge
Credit: Gary Bembridge

Sky News reported a statement from the country’s government about the figures prior to 2014. In 2009, the official number of elephants in Tanzania was 110,000 but by 2014, poachers killed off more than half of the population.

The President’s office claims that in 2015 the rhino population was just 15 rhinos. That’s a very low number. However, the Independent reported that the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) had a different number. CITES documented the rhino population was at 133 rhinos at that time. Either way, the rhino population is slowly increasing nonetheless. This is good.

What Is Poaching?

In 2016 Tanzania formed a task force to combat wildlife poaching. This task force is the reason why the populations of these animals are rising.

Wildlife poaching is the illegal killing of wild animals. Elephants are typically poached for their ivory tusks but sometimes their bodies are used for meat. Ivory tusks are used for jewellery or decor. While rhinos are poached for their horns. Rhino horns are used for Chinese medicine and as a status symbol. Additionally, sometimes there are the “trophy hunters,” which is when the hunter takes a proud photo next to the corpse then cuts the head off the poor animal and hangs it on their wall for display.

 Image from Africa Trophy Hunting
Image from Africa Trophy Hunting
The Ivory Queen

According to NPR, one of the big arrests was the infamous Chinese ivory trafficker that goes by the name of the “Ivory Queen.” The Ivory Queen was a major link between poachers in East African countries (including Tanzania) and ivory purchasers in China for more than a decade. Between 2000 and 2004 alone, she was responsible for smuggling over 800 pieces of Ivory to China. The Tanzanian government gave her a 15-year jail sentence.

Protection Awareness

Even with the elephants and rhino populations rising, Mark Jones, leader of Born Free Foundation, is far-sighted. He is happy with the government’s figures but takes them with a pinch of salt. Jones believes there is still much work to be done to properly protect the rhinos and elephants in Tanzania.

“This sounds like very good news but we should view these figures with caution until there’s independent verification – there’s no way that has occurred through breeding and protection alone. [Rhinos] mature late, have long gestation periods and don’t produce many young. Both species take a long time biologically to reproduce. Elephants are intelligent — they move across national borders to where they are safer, so if there’s been a clampdown on poaching in Tanzania, it may be that some have moved in.”

However, the government’s efforts should be acknowledged. Every new-born of majestic creatures is now getting extra protection due to these efforts. Hopefully, elephant and rhino populations in Tanzania will continue to rise.

This article (Tanzania Anti-Poaching Task Force Helps Elephant & Rhino Populations Increase) was originally created for Intelligent Living and is published here under Creative Commons.

Continue Reading

Animal World

Canada Becomes The First G20 Nation To Ban Shark Fin Trade!

Published

on

Canada Becomes First G20 Nation To Ban Shark Fin Trade!
Photo Credit: www.sharks.org

In June, Canada became the first G20 nation to ban the import and export of shark fins. The law also includes directives to rebuild depleted fish populations. The newly passed law, called “The New Fisheries Act,” could radically change the global shark fin trade, as Canada was previously the largest importer of shark fins outside of Asia.

Last year alone, over 148,241 kg of shark fins were imported into Canada, which were worth roughly $2.4 million, according to Statistics Canada. Shark fins are most commonly used for a luxury soup, which is often seen as a delicacy in Asian cultures.

According to a 2018 report from the Canadian government, 35% of major fish stocks in the country were healthy the previous year. Only 14% of the county’s fish stocks were in the cautious zone, with 10% in critical condition. These numbers may not seem terrible, but this is the lowest number of healthy fish stocks that the county has seen since 2011.

Sen. Michael MacDonald, one of the main proponents of the recent ban, said that, “This is just one step forward; it’s not the end, but it’s an important one and sends a signal to the world that this practice is wrong, has to be stopped, and Canada will not participate in the import of these fins anymore.”

Environmentalists and animal rights advocates are cautiously optimistic.

Josh Laughren, executive director of Oceana Canada, a private conservation group, told The Japan Times that the success or failure of this measure will come down to enforcement.

“With all laws, how they’re implemented matters, but there’s no question this has the potential to be transformative for how we manage Canada’s oceans,” Laughren said.

Shark finning has actually been illegal throughout the region since 1994, but the heavy imports through Canada continued to fuel the industry. Prior to the passage of the new law, shark fins were already banned in 19 Canadian municipalities.

In much of the United States, shark fins are still legal. However, in 12 US states, it is illegal to sell or even possess shark fins. The European Union has similar laws, entirely banning the sale of shark fins. However, it is still possible to order shark fin soup all throughout Canada, the US, and the EU, despite these strict laws on the industry.

Animal rights activists say that shark finning is not only a threat to fish populations, but it is also a cruel industry. In this barbaric practice, a live shark is caught and has is fins removed while it is alive. The poor animal is then thrown back into the water to suffer until it dies. It is estimated that some 100 million sharks are killed every year. Considering how slow sharks reproduce, this represents a very serious threat to their species.

If you enjoyed reading this article and want to see more like this one, we’d be humbled if you would help us spread the word and share it with your friends and family. Join us in our quest to promote free, useful information to all!

Continue Reading

Animal World

Thought To Be Extinct Taiwanese Leopard Spotted Recently After Having Disappeared In 1983

Published

on

Thought To Be Extinct Taiwanese Leopard Spotted Recently After Having Disappeared In 1983
Photo Credit: Inhabitat

Hopeful news for animal lovers is coming out of Taiwan, where rangers say they’ve spotted a leopard thought to be extinct. The Formosan clouded leopard was declared extinct in 2013, though the last official sighting occurred in 1983. Locally known as Li’uljaw, these elusive creatures are not easy to trap, but a group of rangers in Taitung County’s Daren Township have been patrolling since last summer hoping to spot the cat that locals claim to have seen.

Village chief of the Paiwan Tribe, Kao Cheng-chi, confirmed that rangers have been on alert since last June and that they’d held tribal meetings to discuss the sightings and ensure that hunters were kept at bay. Now, rangers have reported seeing Formosan clouded leopards hunting goats on a cliff, while a separate group spotted one run up a tree after roaming near some scooters.

Image source: Yahoo

The Formosan clouded leopard is a subspecies of the clouded leopard, a Himalayan cat that has been on the IUCN’s vulnerable list since 2008. Known for its beautiful dusky-grey markings, the Formosan clouded leopard was endemic to Taiwan and, at one time, it was the island’s second largest carnivore. Extensive logging ate away at its habitat, forcing it to retreat into the mountains.

Image source: Yahoo

This rare animal is considered sacred by the Paiwan tribe and is still listed as protected wildlife by Taiwan’s Forestry Bureau. The Paiwan have implored the government to stop logging in order to allow the Formosan clouded leopards to come out of hiding and there have been reports of encounters past 1983, even if they weren’t official sightings. Liu Chiung-hsi, a professor at the National Taitung University of Department of Life Sciences, said that a group of indigenous hunters told him that they had killed several cats in the 1990s, but burned their pelts for fear of repercussion from the government.

Now that these new sightings have been reported, the Taitung Forest District Office is hoping to confirm the sightings and start scientific research regarding them. For his part, Professor Chiung-hsi believes the reports. He told local reporters, “I believe this animal still does exist,” stating that it’s not surprising that they haven’t been seen regularly due to their vigilance and natural elusive behaviour.

It wouldn’t be the first time a seemingly extinct species popped back up. Just recently the Fernandina giant tortoise, thought to be extinct after a last official sighting in 1906, was spotted by rangers at the Galápagos National Park. Fingers crossed that the same is true for the Formosan clouded leopard.

If you enjoyed reading this article and want to see more like this one, we’d be humbled if you would help us spread the word and share it with your friends and family. Join us in our quest to promote free, useful information to all!

Continue Reading

Our Facebook Page

Trending Now

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Censorship is hiding us from you.

Get breaking conscious news articles sent directly to your inbox!

You have Successfully Subscribed!