Tuesday, December 29, 2015

New surgery suite at the Edmonton pound saves hundreds of cats

Two years ago, staff at Edmonton’s Animal Care and Control Centre were making tough choices about which cats and dogs to save. This year, they performed hundreds of surgeries in-house, saving potentially thousands of dollars a surgery, which allowed them to give more and better treatments to unclaimed pets. For the first time in recent memory, 100 per cent of all pets deemed adoptable in 2015 were saved.
A cat in the surgical suite at Edmonton's Animal Care and Control Centre.

The centre impounds strays or abandoned animals. It holds unlicensed animals for three days, licensed ones for 10 days, as required by provincial legislation, before sending good candidates back out for adoption.

Edmonton officials have been pitching various ways to reduce euthanasia rates since at least 2008, when about a third of the 4,887 cats and dogs brought to the pound were put down. This year, roughly 6,300 animals were turned in and only nine per cent were put down.

“We’re meeting that need and doing it in a more cost effective fashion,” said Ron Gabruck, the city’s director for animal care and pest management. “The benefit of this suite in terms of ongoing cost savings and the subjective side of what we do here is immense. How do you put a price tag on us offering the ethical care that meets community standards?”

Monday, December 7, 2015

Cats mauled in suspected dog attacks

Natalie Linton told 6PR that she was forced to put her cat down on Friday after it was fatally mauled by a dog.

Ms Linton said more than 30 people in the Ballajura area had also shared stories of two rogue dogs attacking their cats.

Ballajura resident Marley Nugent posted on the Ballajura Community Watch Facebook page that she had put her cat down this morning after it was mauled overnight.

A SPATE of fatal attacks on cats in Perth’s northern suburbs has prompted an investigation by the City of Swan.

Search warrants were executed at two properties in Ballajura and Stratton on Friday following a series of dog attacks in the area.

City of Swan chief executive officer Mike Foley said three dogs had been seized from the properties pending further investigation into the attacks.

“Our cat was just attacked within the passed (sic) hour and a half. We heard the attack, we rushed outside to find two dogs having hold of him,” she wrote.

“We rushed him off to the vet, there where medical bills of above $9,000. The vet herself said the most human thing would be to let him go. He had a very large gash on his abdomen. This exposed his stomach, the vet said he’s (sic) stomach could possibly be punctured or damaged.”

A spokeswoman for the City of Swan said a further update on the attacks would be issued later on Tuesday.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Hawaii Moves To Ban Wild Performing Animals

Hawaii likely will become the first U.S. state to ban the use of elephants, bears and other exotic wild animals for entertainment purposes.

<span class='image-component__caption' itemprop="caption">A bear performs on a bike in Ukraine's National Circus in 2013.</span>

The Hawaii Department of Agriculture board on Tuesday unanimously approved a proposed rules change that would define "dangerous wild animals" and prohibit the import of such animals "for exhibition or performance in public entertainment shows such as circuses, carnivals and state fairs." The rules make exceptions for commercial filming in television or movies and in government zoos.

Tyke, a 20-year-old female African circus elephant, escaped from the Neal Blaisdell Centerafter trampling a groomer and killing her trainer during a performance with Honolulu's Circus International on Aug. 20, 1994. She charged down Honolulu streets before being gunned down by police.

With Tuesday's preliminary approval, the issue heads to statewide public hearings. Agriculture department spokeswoman Janelle Saneishi told HuffPost in an email that the proposed rules must still be reviewed by the Hawaii Attorney General's office and approved by Hawaii Gov. David Ige.

Not surprisingly, the proposal is generating opposition from fair and circus advocates. As the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Tuesday, the Circus Fans Association submitted written testimony in which it characterized proponents of the measure as "animal rights extremists" who wrongly claim that the animals are mistreated.

Friday, November 6, 2015

4 Abusive Industries That Harm Horses

The way in which animals are exploited and used in today’s world is undeniably cruel.  Examples of ongoing abuse and neglect can be found in all forms – from the orcas held in captivity at SeaWorld to the countless creatures locked up in zoos to the thousands of farm animals suffering daily in factory farms.  Although there is a greater awareness among society, many of these cruel industries are still in full operation with no signs of ever ceasing.

When we view animals as money-making objects, we tend to ignore the fact that they are not exempt from suffering.  Horses are one of the most over-exploited animals on the planet. Here are five industries that are still harming horses.

The Brutality of Horse Racing in 60 Seconds Flat (VIDEO)

1. The Racing Industry

Horses bred into the world of racing are forced to endure unthinkable cruelties, all in the name of profit.They are considered to be mere commodities in a greed-driven industry.Training begins at a very young age, despite the fact that the animals is still growing.   It is not uncommon for horses to be drugged in order to enhance performance as well as mask pain from injuries.  They are prevented from exhibiting natural behaviors including socializing with other horses.

2. Carriage Horses

Go to any major city and you are likely to come across a horse-drawn carriage.
From the outside, it looks like a romantic way to explore the city.The horses are decorated with bows and ribbons, pulling a beautiful carriage behind them.It has grown over the years to a wide-spread industry, thriving on unassuming tourists. The reality is it is far from romantic for the horses involved.They suffer greatly every day.

3. Live Export of Horses

Another thriving industry that few are likely to be aware of is the live export of horses to Japan for meat.Horses either bred for this purpose or purchased by kill buyers at local auctions are confined to wooden crates with many other frightened horses.In the dead of night, they are placed in cargo holds of airlines departing from Calgary International Airport in Canada.

4. Horse Slaughter

Nearly 80,000 horses are inhumanely killed every year.The slaughter industry is a massive one with roots all over the world.Again, the purpose is to produce horse meat – considered to be a delicacy by many.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Sea Turtles Threatened By Plastic Pollution

Scientists have long understood the devastating affects that plastic bags, bottles and other byproducts have on marine ecosystems. Now it appears that plastic pollution has had significant impacts on populations of all seven sea turtle species, a new study reveals.

"I was shocked at how little is known about the impacts of plastic on marine turtles," Sarah Nelms, one of the study's lead authors from the Centre for Ecology and Conservation at the University of Exeter, said in a news release. "We know that discarded plastic poses a serious threat to wildlife, but this study shows that more research is urgently needed if we are to understand the scale of the problem."

Annual global plastic production has grown from 1.5 million tons to 299 million tons in the last 65 years, according to the release. This only increases the amount of plastic pollution that ends up on both land and at sea. While previous studies have identified the threat of plastic pollution on seabird populations, for the recent study researchers specifically examined how sea turtles ingest or become entangled in discarded plastic debris.

When plastic materials are discarded at sea, turtles and other marine animals risk becoming entangled in the debris. This could lead to lacerations, increased drag when swimming, and ultimately death from drowning or starvation. Beach-bound hatchlings face equal threat, and if newborn sea turtles are threatened, populations may not be able to rebound.

The study, recently published in the ICES Journal of Marine Science, highlights mitigation policies conservationists can use to better protect sea turtle populations.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

What Animals Think and Feel

Do animals experience joy, grief, jealousy, anger, love? Or are those purely human emotions that we have super-imposed on animal behaviour? Well, in his controversial new book, Beyond Words, noted American biologist and science writer Carl Safina says it's obvious that wolves, elephants, whales and apes do share those emotions with us. And it's time to re-evaluate our relationship with the animal world, and look at the similarities between our sense of consciousness and self-awareness - and theirs.

Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel, by Carl Safina (Henry Holt and Co.)

Water, water, everywhere - but maybe not for long. A new Canadian study says that the Athabasca River in Alberta. which supplies much of the water for the province's oilsands development, is susceptible to drought, and the industry use of the river may not be sustainable.

And - good news and bad news about climate change. Good news is that some creatures might actually benefit from global warming, Bad news? It's the dreaded mosquito. And that's really bad news for Arctic Caribou, whose young can actually die from a mosquito swarm.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Which Animals Have the Longest Claws?

We really dug our claws into this Saturday’s Weird Animal Question of the Week, asked by Judy Eastwood: "What animal has the longest and shortest toenails?”

There isn’t much data on the subject, especially for shorter toenails, but we took a closer look at a few long-clawed animals that would not get a good night’s sleep in a waterbed.

That means their claws are about 22 percent of their body length—probably the longest claw to body ratio of any living animal, Mariella Superina, chair of the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Anteater, Sloth, and Armadillo Specialist Group, says via email. (See "Diggers in the Dark: Discovering Giant Armadillos in Brazil’s Pantanal.")

Native to South America, giant armadillos use their huge claws to dig up prey. They're “definitely not aggressive," but if threatened, they “could probably try to defend themselves with their foreclaws,” Superina says.

Digging It

Picture of a giant armadillo

Armadillos, like anteaters and sloths, belong to the superorder Xenarthra, which includes insect-eating, big-clawed animals from the American tropics, says Don Moore, associate director of Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, D.C.

America's Got Talons 

Picture of a harpy eagle

When it comes to birds, the American harpy eagle, which ranges from Central to South America, is a major contender for longest talons—it has four-inch (ten-centimeter) long talons, says Bryan Bedrosian of the Teton Raptor Center.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Winnipeg Pet Rescue Shelter Director is named Manitoba hero

Every dog has his day — or so says Carla Martinelli-Irvine, Director and Founder of Winnipeg Pet Rescue Shelter and one of this year’s Manitoba Heroes.

Bolt is pictured.

Martinelli-Irvine manages the St. James-based shelter, which is the first and oldest no-kill pet shelter in the city. It takes in up to 1,000 animals a year.

Formerly a correctional officer at the Remand Centre, Martinelli-Irvine would come home and feel at peace when she was with her pets. This led her to leave behind law enforcement in favour of a job at the Winnipeg Humane Society, but the animal advocate never agreed with euthanization as a means of population control.

How do they find room for all the animals?

Penny and Bob are pictured.

Some animals that come to the shelter are young and require bottle-feeding; others are in recovery from surgery or abuse. The majority of the animals that end up at the shelter are unwanted, or the owners are unable to care for them anymore.

Since they’ve opened, the shelter has seen a huge number of animals come and go. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for Martinelli-Irvine and her staff to come to work and see that animals have been left by the door or behind the building.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

This Orphaned Baby Sloth Has To Have His Teddy Bear

Hello, Edward!

This little guy, named after Edward Scissorhands, was born at the London Zoo only seven weeks ago.

Sadly, his mother stopped producing milk and couldn’t take care of him anymore.
But zookeepers were able to start bottle-feeding him many times a day!

He gets

He gets “goat’s milk, topped up with some vitamins,” said zookeeper Kelly-Anne Kelleher.

He’s still learning how to grow into a big and strong sloth, so he gets to “train” on this sloth-like teddy bear.

This is to “help build up the muscles that Edward would normally use holding on to mum.”

This Orphaned Baby Sloth Has To Have His Teddy Bear

With some regular exercise…

All that hard work can be pretty tiring for a baby sloth.

Just keep hanging in there, Edward!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Cat with a Cause! A-Pal Humane Society

Since we moved from southern California late last year, I have been a cat without a cause. I had been an Advo-Cat for the rescue that saved my life and got me the surgery I needed. I have been trying to connect with a new rescue to represent because part of my mission is to pay it forward and help other kitties find loving, forever homes. It has taken a while but we have finally made the connection and now I am an Advo-Cat for A-Pal Humane Society! I am very excited about this. Each Friday, I will share with you one of their kitties. I hope you’ll help me with my mission by sharing these cats.

A-Pal Humane Society Won't You Help Us Foster Poster

A-Pal Humane Society has a surprisingly long history in Amador County. In 1978 a group of animal loving Amador County residents created the organization with the goal of promoting the humane treatment of animals in Amador County. You can read about their many accomplishments here. Their bottom line is amazing: A-PAL Humane Society has worked with shelter staff and volunteers to move the shelter intake from 2400 animals annually with a save rate of only 15% in 1988, to 1558 animals in 2013 with a save rate of 87%. Pretty impressive!

They have lots of special programs and there are many volunteer opportunities. One thing we think is especially cool is that volunteers actually work at the shelter socializing the animals, walking the dogs, etc. They also have volunteers who foster cats and kittens in their homes. Some of their programs include low cost spay/neuter, community cats and helping animals with special needs.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Art students give city park a colourful makeoverYear

Art students give city park a colourful makeoverYear 8 student Imogen Pawlik works on her heart-shaped design.

ST DAVIDS play park has undergone a colourful transformation thanks to a group of arty students.
City councillor Keeley Rose came up with the idea after she and members of the park committee noticed the fence around the toddler’s play area was in need of repair.
She approached Caren Owens, the art and design teacher at Ysgol Dewi Sant, who jumped at the chance to take part in the community project.
Year 7 students studying Islamic geometric patterning came up with designs for the fence posts, and they were assisted in the painting by older pupils.
Year 8 student Imogen Pawlik said: It’s nice to get out of lessons and help brighten up the park.
“I did a heart design and one that looks like a tortoise shell.”
Year 9 student Madeleine Nix said: “I’ve never really done painting that can be seen by everyone.
“It’s something we can all be proud of.”
The Mayor of St Davids, Councillor Frank John visited the park on Thursday afternoon (July 9) to see how the project was progressing.
He said: “I think it’s brilliant. It’s nice to see the kids get involved, and thanks to Keeley for thinking it up.
“It’s great to see the City Council and school working together.”
Cllr Rose said: “They’ve come up with all this themselves. It’s worked out really well.”
Mrs Owens added: “The kids have had lots of fun coming down here. They’ve really enjoyed painting the fence posts and feeling part of the community.

“We’re always very keen to get involved in projects and get the kids out of the classroom. When Keeley was in school with me years ago, we did a mural for the Eisteddfod.”

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Animals' infections can impact most on relatives

  Research in families of wild seabirds reveals for the first time how parasite
 infection in some can have a serious effect on how well their relatives do.
It is not clear why infection in some birds can affect others, but scientists suggest it may affect adults' ability to nurture their young, or that infected chicks may need more care.
  The findings could have important implications for the conservation of wild animals, including seabirds, which are under threat.
Scientists from The University Of Edinburgh and the Centre For Ecology And Hydrology studied the impact of disease on families of cormorant-like birds, known as shags, on the Isle of May National Nature Reserve off Scotland's east coast during the breeding season.
They found that worm infection in parent birds or their nestlings impacted most on others in their family group.
 In experiments, researchers treated either parent or chick seabirds with anti-worming injections and found that this could have a positive impact for others in the nest.
 They found that when parents were treated, chicks born early in the season had a better chance of survival. If chicks born early in the season were given anti-worming treatment, their parents were found to gain weight.
  Parents of treated also went on to breed earlier in the subsequent season, giving their offspring in the following year a better chance of survival.
The effects of reducing worm infection were, however, not always beneficial to relatives. Chicks born later in the season to parents that had been wormed had a slightly worse chance of survival. Similarly, parents of treated chicks born late in the season went on to lose weight.
Scientists suggest this may be because late in the season birds are at greater risk of a secondary infection, and food is in short supply.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Africa’s soccer

Africa’s soccer greats meet… As union brings football players’ welfare to the fore
Africa’s soccer greats meet… As union brings football players’ welfare to the fore
Namibia’s commercial city Windhoek’s luxurious hub, the Hilton Hotel, will be a hive of activity when the Namibia Football Players Union (NAFPU) hosts the much-anticipated Division Africa Congress, which gets underway tomorrow morning.
The gathering will be graced by retired African football greats such as former Bayern Munich fullback and Ghanaian international Sammy Kuffour, Jeremy Njitab (Cameroon) and Brave Warriors title-winning skipper Stigga Ketjijere, among a dozen other high-profile personalities.
The two-day event will deliberate on the thorny issue of footballers’ status with unions on the African continent and take stock of progress made so far as well as map the way forward.
An excited president of NAFPU, former Brave Warriors’ dribbling wizard Lolo Goraseb, expressed satisfaction with the progress made by the union since its long overdue establishment in 2008.
He says there has been a wind of change in the mentality of local clubs, who previously showed resistance to engage with the union on players’ grievances.
“This is the most appropriate time, we have just completed the constitutional review of the country’s flagship league, NPL. We touched on the status review that would allow us to put legal instruments in place thus obliging NPL clubs to voluntarily recognise the union including its designated functions.”
Goraseb says the union’s tortoise pace approach was a result of the conspicuous absence of a collective bargaining agreement with the NPL and its affiliates. “There was no legal framework in place and that scenario hampered our progress.”
New Era Sport has established that the NPL Statutes Review Committee has undertaken to call into life the long properly constituted competent Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) under the jurisdiction of the NFA.
It also resolved to appoint a competent independent NPL disciplinary committee to deal with disputes. “For us, that status has been reviewed in the best interest of players and from now onwards, we are going to deal with any disputes, contractual or unfair dismissals.”
Goraseb expressed serious concern over the current status quo in domestic football, citing the players’ lack of contractual understanding as a major challenge.
“As a union, we strongly discourage our members from rushing into signing contracts with their respective teams without being fully conversant with each and every detail in the contract.”
The former Black Africa attacking midfielder adds that the union would protect the interest of clubs should players be found in breach of their contractual obligations.
The portfolio Minister Jerry Ekandjo will be among the dignitaries at the opening ceremony this morning, while football heavyweights led by NFA President Frans Mbidi, Johnny “JJD” Doeseb (NPL Chairman) and several captains of industry would also be in attendance.

Stress in domestic cats: new review discusses causes and management

 Pet cats can suffer from stress triggered by a variety of events and situations, including conflicts with other cats and changes to

routine. While cats can adapt, sometimes the stress can be too much, with negative effects on their health.
   Writing in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, a group of veterinarians from the Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain, explains that stress can impoverish the health of pet cats and increase their risk of disease.

The authors say that stress in pet cats can lead to behavior changes that are so difficult to manage that owners end up relinquishing them or having them euthanized.

In their paper, they discuss the causes and effects of stress in pet cats and strategies on how to prevent and reduce it.

Some of the main causes of stress that they discuss include: changes to the pets' environment, a barren environment, poor relationships with humans, conflicts with other cats and lack of control and predictability.

The authors note that other new changes - such as the arrival of a new member in the household, or a change in the daily routine - may also be stressful for the family's feline pet.

Effects of stress in cats
In cats, stress distorts normal behavior - leading to reduction or excess of it. Generally, stress causes a domestic cat to become less active and playful and engage in markedly fewer positive interactions with other cats and humans.

The authors note that stress can also cause pet cats to eat less - or more, in some circumstances - than usual.

Stress can also trigger compulsive behavior in domestic cats, such as over-grooming, to the point where the animal loses its fur, showing patches of bare skin. But sometimes, stress can have the opposite effect, causing the cat to be neglectful about grooming.

Another sign of stress in a pet cat is increased urine spraying and increased vigilance - the animal can also become a lot more vocal than usual.

Cats are naturally curious and social animals, but when stressed, they may stop exploring and hide away for long periods of time. They can also become more aggressive.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

When You Put Shelter Animals in Pet Stores, Something Amazing Happens

Pets are adorable. But our love for pets produces some very un-adorable facts. For example, in the U.S. alone there are 70 million stray

dogs and cats, and of them only 6 to 8 million enter shelters. Of those that are in shelters, around 30 percent are purebred, and 90 percent are healthy and adoptable. Yet, only 18 percent of owned dogs and 16 percent of owned cats have been adopted from shelters. For most people, the go-to place for getting a pet remains the pet store. This encourages two types of cruelty — one that occurs in puppy mills that breed purebred dogs, and another that occurs in the overcrowded shelters where some of these same dogs go, after being abandoned by their owners.

Brazil, as many other countries, also has a problem with homeless animals. In order to raise awareness and encourage adoption, Associação Quatro Patinhas has started a clever campaign called Priceless Pets that runs under the slogan “Better than buying a life is saving one.” It frees future pet owners from their bias and shows them that there is no difference between the love and cuteness they’ll get from animals for sale and those for adoption.

The organization has partnered with 12 pet shops in Brazil (more can sign up), which have agreed to lend their displays for one day and replace the animals for sale with pets for adoption, without telling the customers. The following video shows the result.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Compassion doesn't care if you have two legs or four': The vets working to save the animals caught up in Nepal's devastating earthquake

Purnima Tamang lost everything in the Nepalese earthquake which destroyed most of her village.

Everything, that is, apart from her flock of eight goats.

Mrs Tamang, alone and without family, is now sheltering with her animals in what remains of her house.

'Call them what you want – my property, my family, my friends, they are all I have left,' she said.

But her goats are suffering from exposure, having been soaked by rain for five days - and that is where the Humane Society International's animal rescue team comes in.

Scroll down for video
The HSI's vets have arrived in the disaster-hit country, travelling out into the remote villages outside of Kathmandu.

Thousands of animals - many of which are vital to the livelihood of the families who own them - have been affected by the earthquake.

Many have sustained injuries from being trapped in collapsed buildings or hit by falling debris, while a huge number have been crushed to death or buried alive.
Working with a number of other animal welfare charities, HSI's team is providing life-saving medicines, vaccinations, surgical equipment and other supplies for the four-legged victims of the quake, as well as looking into providing shelter and food for sick, injured, lost and abandoned animals.

But they are also helping the villagers they come across.

In Sengden Village, vets have treated Mrs Tamang's goats for respiratory problems, and are now planning to return with medicine and food to help her.

Rahul Sehgal, director of HSI Asia, said: 'There is complete devastation in many areas for people and animals alike, and we're helping both.

'For many people, their animals are all they have left, so HSI's animal aid is a vital lifeline.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Yes, we have more pandas

Good news for pandas, apparently
It’s official. There are now 1864 adult pandas in the wild, according to an announcement made by China’s State Forestry Administration at a long-awaited press conference in Beijing this morning.
For the past 40 years, China has conducted a survey of adult pandas in the wild, at roughly ten-year intervals. The 1970s estimate was 1100. In the 1980s, it was 1120. The third census, conducted between 1998 and 2002, gave us 1596 pandas. The latest figure of 1864, revealed this morning, suggests that the number of adult pandas in the wild has increased by 268 over the last decade, a gain of 16.8%.
The total area inhabited by wild giant pandas is estimated at 2,577,000 hectares, an expansion of 11.8% since the last report. With the number of dedicated panda nature reserves increasing from 40 to 67 over the same period, it’s reckoned that 1246 pandas or two-thirds of the entire population now resides in a protected area.
“The increase of both the wild giant panda population size and habitat area over last ten years is a significant conservation achievement,” says Xiaohai Li, executive director of programmes at WWF-China in a press release.
For all those who want a conservation success story, stop reading now. But if you can tolerate a bit grey in the place of black-and-white, you might want to digest just one more paragraph.
As I pointed out in an earlier post, China has changed the method of monitoring pandas over the years, making it difficult to know whether panda numbers really have risen. I also noted that if it were up to politicians to put a figure on the wild panda population, they’d be happiest with precisely the kind of modest increase we’ve seen today. It’s enough to claim that support for panda conservation is paying off, but it’s not so great as to take the panda away from the limelight that comes with being classified as “Endangered” (which would occur at a population size of 2500). In spite of these niggling caveats, I am prepared to state, with some certainty, that the number of pandas in the wild - whatever that figure really is - is either going up, going down or staying the same.
If pandas and politics are your bag, you might be interested in my second book The Way of the Panda: The Curious History of China’s Political Animal (Profile Books, 2010).
CORRECTION: Over at Nature, Jane Qiu has written an excellent piece on the survey results in which she points out that IUCN can downgrade the status of a threatened species from “Endangered” to “Vulnerable” if a population of less than the 2500 is on the increase. This, it would seem, is the case for pandas.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Chihuahua hiding in suitcase sets off baggage alarms at LaGuardia airport

TransportatA fellow chihuahua in Los Angeles.ion Security Administration (TSA) officers said a woman’s seven-year-old chihuahua sneaked into her suitcase and triggered a luggage screening alert at New York’s LaGuardia Airport last week.
TSA spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein said the black, hard-sided suitcase was in a checked-baggage area on Tuesday when an unknown-contents alarm indicated an officer should inspect the case.
Those unknown contents proved to be a beige and tan chihuahua.
TSA said the owner had no idea her little dog had crawled in and curled up while she was packing for a flight to Los Angeles.
The woman’s husband came to the airport and took the dog home.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Lions - Known For Breeding With Tigers and Leopards

Lions are known for breeding with tigers and leopards. This is why their cousins include jaguars, panthers, tigers and leopards. They can trace their ages back to many old roots and today modern species can be found in many parts of Africa. Some are found in zoos in India or China as well. Captive lions in cooler climates of Europe and North America sport heavier manes whereas the lions of bushy Tsavo region in Kenya are maneless. Lions have the largest skull amongst all cats, with strong jaws and canines designed to suit their carnivorous lifestyle.

Believe it or not, this seemingly indestructible creature, whose demeanor exudes such strength and character, is dwindling in numbers so rapidly that at the current rate of decline, the lion may very well become just another statistic in the story of evolution. You see, there has been a clash of difference between lions and the progress of African farming. To put it bluntly, one of them has to go. Unfortunately for fauna enthusiasts, it's the lion.

For some countries in central and even western Africa, it's almost too little too late as lion numbers have almost completely diminished. There are many difficulties in managing african lion re-population. Breeding programs are fine but the problem is in re-locating animals into new environments among established prides. More often than not, they are not accepted by the existing pride. They team together to protect themselves against vultures, wildebeests, hyenas and more. Female lions mostly do the hunting, killing and stalking. When it comes to protecting the pride, the male lion leads the crowd. Lions can live for around 20 years and will enjoy living in the wild.

Therefore, like elephants, the skins and teeth of lions are also in high demand for buyers. To fight against such illegal practices, government and wildlife protection agencies are working hard to control the issue. Though lions are not endangered, they are scarce in population. Though they look easy to tame, they can be furious if threatened. Lions are specifically meat eaters but in many cases they are also noticed trying vegetables. Some of the large animals that they like to eat include zebras and hyenas.