Written by Jeff Mackey
For decades, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) illegally
and quietly issued captive-bred wildlife permits—allowing circuses, roadside
zoos, and others to harm, harass, and wound captive-bred endangered species and
making it almost impossible to challenge these abuses. For example, one federal
judge wouldn't allow a former Ringling Bros. circus employee and a
coalition of animal protection groups to challenge Ringling's beating and chaining of captive-bred elephants because Ringling had a captive-bred wildlife permit.
Furryscaly|cc by 2.0
PETA sued the FWS in August 2011 over its decision to
secretly issue one such permit and ignore a requirement that the public be
notified of all permit applications. We asked the court to require the FWS to
make those applications publicly available and to consider public comments
before making a decision about whether to approve any application.
PETA prevailed in the lawsuit—the agency agreed to do just
that and to pay PETA's attorney fees. This victory will make it easier for PETA
to keep a closer eye on animals bred in captivity by Ringling, SeaWorld, Have Trunk Will Travel, and other animal abusers. It also enables PETA to weigh in on permit
applications and bring legal challenges against permits that are improperly
Rennett Stowe|cc by 2.0
What You Can Do
To learn more about helping captive animals, head over to the "Animals Used for
Entertainment" section of PETA.org.
Written by Jennifer OConnor
Federal laws are known for having loopholes,
and a regulation that allows notorious animal abusers and profiteers to use
chimpanzees for purely commercial purposes and in horrific laboratory experiments needs to be closed right now. Currently, only wild chimpanzees are protected as
endangered under the Endangered Species Act—captive chimpanzees are
these protections—but that could soon change.
The U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Service (FWS) has proposed an amendment that would remove this
major exemption and protect wild and captive chimpanzees equally for the first
time. PETA supports this new rule
since it means captive chimpanzees who are forced to perform confusing and
unnatural tricks in the name of entertainment and who suffer at the hands of callous experimenters would be given
the full protection of the Endangered Species
Act, which prohibits harming and harassing listed species.
The FWS is asking the public for comments on this
proposed change and needs to hear from you by the end of the day on January 30.
Click here to urge the FWS to give captive chimpanzees the same protections currently
afforded to their wild counterparts.
Written by PETA
© Comstock/ Wildlife/ Jupiter Images
UPDATE: The deadline has passed
to weigh in on the Fish and Wildlife Service's decision about keeping tigers
safe from animal abusers, but we will post an update as soon as the decision is
The following blog was originally posted September 9, 2011
One thing that you have to say about the notoriously abusive Hawthorn Corporation, which supplies animals for use in circuses and other shows, is that it has some nerve. Despite being cited more than 40 times for violations like feeding tigers moldy and inedible food, confining tigers for months on end in transport cages, denying them exercise or space to move around, and failing to provide veterinary care, Hawthorn has applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to force tigers to endure even more suffering by carting them around the world.
You would think that such an application, coming from a company that has accumulated $272,500 in penalties for violations of federal law, would be immediately tossed in the trash, but just to be on the safe side, PETA is appealing to the FWS to deny the application.
On a related note, a loophole in federal regulations has allowed animal abusers to harm, export, and sell endangered tigers without federal oversight if the tigers are considered "generic"—mixed breeds, in other words. The FWS is working to close that exemption.
Please ask the FWS to deny Hawthorn's application to import and exploit more tigers and voice your support to protect all tigers, "mutts" and purebreds alike.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
If you needed another reason not to do drugs, consider that
it's causing misery for countless tigers, lions, monkeys, birds, and other
exotic animals coveted by Mexican
drug cartel kingpins
as symbols of power. Mexican authorities have seized thousands of exotic "narco
pets" from the estates of busted drug lords, and they're running out of
room to place the animals. Many go to zoos, which are operating at capacity, so
some animals are turned over to breeding operations.
When security forces arrested Sinaloa cartel leader Jesus "The King"
they confiscated more than 200 animals, including peacocks and ostriches. The animals are regarded primarily as status symbols, and many are denied
proper nutrition and veterinary care. Some big cats are cruelly defanged and declawed.
The cartels have also used exotic animals in the same manner as human "mules"
by stuffing condoms filled with cocaine into their bodies before the animals
are shipped to the U.S.
The ideal solution to this problem would be a universal ban
on owning captive exotic
Until that happens, we can take an important step toward protecting captive
tigers here in the U.S. by closing a loophole that limits protections under the Endangered
Species Act for "generic" tigers—ones who are a mix of more than one sub-species of tiger or
are of unknown heritage. Please take a moment to write to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and ask the agency to protect all tigers equally.
Written by Joe Taksel
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.