Written by Jennifer OConnor
It took a PETA
lawsuit to compel the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) to change course,
but after three decades of secretly and illegally issuing hundreds of Endangered Species Act (ESA) permits to circuses, roadside zoos, and other animal
exploiters, the FWS will change its ways.
"captive-bred wildlife (CBW) permits"—previously allowed animal
exhibitors like the notorious Ringling Bros. circus
and Have Trunk Will Travel to harm and harass captive-bred endangered animals like Asian
elephants without any public scrutiny or comments on their plans. Now, anytime circuses
and operators of traveling and roadside displays want to "take" an endangered
species (which includes harming, harassing, and wounding them to force them to perform
in shows), they will
be subjected to public scrutiny and forced to adhere to ESA requirements.
An example of how all this can help animals
harkens back to one of PETA's earliest exposés—this one involving Las Vegas "entertainer"
Bobby Berosini, whose CBW permit was suspended (and his show closed) after PETA
revealed that he had viciously beaten the orangutans used in his tawdry act.
Bros. circus has a pending CBW permit application that would allow it to take
endangered elephants and leopards, so please click here to voice your objections to the FWS right
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.