Wildlife & Environmental Conservation, Inc., Shipped Newborn Cubs Across the Country
For Immediate Release:
November 2, 2015
David Perle 202-483-7382
Moorpark, Calif. – PETA has submitted official comments urging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to deny an application from amateur animal exhibitor Wildlife & Environmental Conservation, Inc. (WEC), in Moorpark to purchase two endangered African leopard cubs from the notoriously cruel Living Treasures Wild Animal Park in Pennsylvania. The Endangered Species Act (ESA) expressly prohibits the sale of endangered animals across state lines. Although the FWS has limited authority to allow exceptions to the ESA when the prohibited activities will enhance the survival of the species, PETA points out in its comments that WEC cannot meet this requirement because its staff has virtually no experience in caring for leopard cubs and has already endangered the animals by shipping them across the country at just 4 days old, removing them from their mothers, and potentially exposing them to communicable diseases and stress.
“If the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service signs off on this sale, it’s flouting the law and endangering these cubs just as much as this facility is,” says PETA counsel Rachel Mathews. “Wildlife & Environmental Conservation is out to stock its enclosures with vulnerable young animals, not to enhance the survival of species on the brink of extinction. That’s why PETA is urging authorities to take this offer off the table immediately.”
Living Treasures has also previously been found transferring animals to shoddy facilities that have allowed animals to suffer and die from apparent inadequate care and, in one case, even a violent attack. In 2012, the facility sent two leopard cubs to a roadside zoo in Indiana, where one animal died without veterinary care and the other was bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat.