Saturday, August 8, 2015

The Blog That Roared

Not this blog. It's more like a moan after days off.

[Ed.: Both the lion and its killer are getting far more media attention than deserved. As tragic as the miserable death of a majestic lion is at the hands of miserable human beings, it pales in significance to the war crimes that have occurred in Palestine, the genetic destruction of peoples with depleted uranium weaponry, the pedophilia that is sustained by people ensconced at the highest levels of society, or the infamy of multiple false flags created to drive the world deeper into destructive wars or to sociologically ‘engineer’ cultures into obeisance to totalitarianism. 3,000 people died on 9/11, but we’re still not allowed to talk about it for fear of becoming labeled as “terrorists”, but the dentist must be extradited?

If I were to post pictures of the dead Palestinian children, or the newly-born children of Iraq, or the politicians involved in pedophilia and worse.…] --

Yeah, I hear that. Bugs me, too.

"Zimbabwe identifies killer of well-known lion as big-game hunter from US" Associated Press  July 28, 2015

HARARE, Zimbabwe — Police said Tuesday they are searching for an American who allegedly shot a well-known, protected lion known as Cecil with a crossbow in a killing that has outraged conservationists and others.

Authorities said two Zimbabwean men will appear in court for allegedly helping lure the lion outside its protected area to kill it. The American faces poaching charges, according to a police spokeswoman.

The American paid $50,000 to hunt the lion, Zimbabwean conservationists said, though the hunter and his local partners maintain they didn’t know the lion they killed was protected.

Walter James Palmer of Eden Prairie, Minn., was identified on Tuesday by both the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force and the Safari Operators Association of Zimbabwe as the American hunter.

Emmanuel Fundira, the president of the Safari Operators Association of Zimbabwe, said at a news conference that Palmer’s whereabouts were unknown.

Palmer issued a statement through a public relations firm saying he was unaware that the lion was so well known and part of a study.

‘‘I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favorite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt,’’ he said, maintaining that to his knowledge, everything about the hunt had been legal.


"Zimbabwe court says US lion hunter got unlawful help" Associated Press  July 29, 2015

HARARE, Zimbabwe — A hunting guide and a farm owner appeared in court Wednesday on allegations they helped an American dentist kill a protected lion named Cecil, and the head of Zimbabwe’s safari association said the lion was unethically lured into the kill zone and denied ‘‘a chance of a fair chase.’’

The Zimbabwean men were accused of aiding Walter James Palmer, who reportedly paid $50,000 to track and kill the black-maned lion. Zimbabwe police have said they are looking for Palmer of Eden Prairie, Minn., whose exact whereabouts were unknown.

During the nighttime hunt, the men tied a dead animal to their car to draw the lion out of a national park, said Johnny Rodrigues, chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force. Using bait to lure the lion is deemed unethical by the Safari Operators Association of Zimbabwe.

A professional hunter named Theo Bronkhorst was accused of failing to ‘‘prevent an unlawful hunt.’’ Court documents say Bronkhorst was supervising while Palmer shot the animal. If convicted, Bronkhorst faces up to 15 years in prison. Bronkhorst was released on $1,000 bail.

A second man, farm owner Honest Trymore Ndlovu, also appeared in court but was not charged and was released from custody, his lawyer Tonderai Makuku said.

Court documents did not mention Palmer as a suspect.

Palmer said in a statement that he relied on his guides to ensure a legal hunt. ‘‘I had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favorite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt,’’ Palmer said in statement through a public relations firm.

The lion’s death stirred outrage worldwide.


"US agency to investigate killing of Cecil the lion" by Katie Rogers New York Times   July 30, 2015

NEW YORK — The US Fish and Wildlife Service said Thursday that it was investigating the circumstances surrounding the killing of Cecil, a lion that is thought to have been lured out of its protected habitat in Zimbabwe this month and killed by Walter Palmer, an American dentist and hunter.

“That investigation will take us wherever the facts lead,” said Edward Grace, a deputy chief of law enforcement at the agency. “At this point in time, however, multiple efforts to contact Dr. Walter Palmer have been unsuccessful.”

That would be a first for the United States government.

The killing of Cecil became a global subject of outrage this week, and Palmer, who has said that he believed the killing of the animal was legal, has been the target of a vociferous Internet shaming campaign.

The lion, well known to those who visited Hwange National Park in western Zimbabwe and by many locals, was killed and beheaded — the head intended as a trophy for the hunter.

Wildlife officials and conservationists say some big-game hunters in search of exotic trophies and poachers who brazenly cross into protected parks and other habitats to slice the tusks off elephants and chop the horns off rhinoceroses, leaving the animals to die, are causing a global wildlife crisis.

Now what agenda is going to be pushed?

Citing what it called alarming trends in illicit hunting and poaching of animals, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution Thursday that supporters say would be the start of a global effort to tackle illegal poaching and trafficking of wildlife.

In an address to the General Assembly, Harald Braun, the permanent representative of Germany to the United Nations, said illicit hunting had become a pressing global issue. He described the poaching of an elephant for its tusks near a national park in South Africa this week, and the killings of more than 700 rhinoceroses for their horns in South Africa this year.

“The time to act is now,” Braun said. “No one country, region, or agency working alone will be able to succeed.”

UN officials said that the resolution would foster cooperation among countries to fight money laundering, and that Secretary General Ban Ki-moon would recommend actions based on the resolution next year.

Public attention to poaching, often carried out by criminal gangs and cartels seeking the value of ivory and horns, has increased, officials say.

While in Kenya last weekend, President Obama made the tightening of the ivory trade a key point of his visit.

He announced changes that would effectively ban the commercial trade of African elephant ivory in the United States in bid to further close trading loopholes exploited by traffickers.

I'll be getting to that trip at some point soon.

According to the Wildlife Conservation Society, the global ivory trade drives the killing of up to 35,000 elephants a year across the continent.

In 2012, The New York Times reported on rhinoceros poaching, finding that horns were traded at $30,000 a pound, a price that rendered them more valuable than gold.


"Zimbabwe accuses second American of lion killing" Associated Press  August 03, 2015

HARARE, Zimbabwe — A Pennsylvania doctor was accused Sunday of illegally killing a lion in April, adding to the outcry over a Minnesota dentist whom Zimbabwe’s government wants to extradite for killing a well-known lion named Cecil in early July.

Why do they want to make an enemy of the United States in this way?

Zimbabwe’s National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority accused Jan Casimir Seski of Murrysville, Pa., of shooting the lion with a bow and arrow in April near Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park, without approval, on land where it was not allowed.

Landowner Headman Sibanda was arrested and has been assisting police, the wildlife authority said.

Seski is a gynecological oncologist who directs the Center for Bloodless Medicine and Surgery at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh.

He’s also an active big-game hunter, according to safari outfitters and bow-hunting sites where pictures of kills identify ‘‘Dr. Jan Seski’’ as the man standing next to slain animals including elephants, an impala, a kudu, a Nyala, a hippopotamus, and an ostrich.

Those images also match the doctor’s appearance on his medical practice’s website.

Seski’s neighbors said he mostly keeps to himself.


RelatedAmerican doctor defends lion hunt, says he followed rules

"Zimbabwe has suspended the hunting of lions, leopards, and elephants in an area where a lion popular with tourists was killed, and is investigating the killing of another lion in April that may have been illegal. In addition, bow and arrow hunts have been suspended unless they are approved by the Parks and Wildlife Management Authority. The move followed an outcry after the alleged illegal killing of a lion by US dentist Walter James Palmer, whose extradition is being sought."

Also seeUS should forbid the import of lion ‘trophies’

And while you are at it, ban the cruel exploitation of the circus.

"Poachers infiltrate African park, kill 5 elephants; Two suspects held in shooting of mother, offspring" by Kevin Sieff Washington Post  July 30, 2015

NAIROBI — While the world mourned Cecil, the 13-year-old lion allegedly shot by an American hunter in Zimbabwe, an even more devastating poaching incident was quietly carried out in Kenya.

The same day Obama was there.

Poachers killed five elephants in Tsavo West National Park on Monday night. The carcasses were recovered by rangers Tuesday morning — what appeared to be an adult female and her four offspring, their tusks hacked off.

While the killing of the lion in Zimbabwe has attracted the world’s attention, the death of the five elephants has received almost no coverage, even though elephants are under a far greater threat from poachers than lions. Their tusks can be sold in Asia for more than $1,000 per pound.

‘‘It’s just devastating,’’ said Paul Gathitu, a spokesman for Kenya Wildlife Service. ‘‘It took us completely by surprise.’’

Kenyan investigators say the poachers crossed the border from neighboring Tanzania, slaughtered the elephants, and then quickly returned to their base, making them difficult to track. Tsavo stretches along the border for more than 50 miles.

Rangers heard gunshots ring out Monday evening. They searched all night through the vast park and discovered the carnage the next morning. There was blood and loose skin where the tusks were cut off. Kenyan authorities say the poachers escaped on motorcycles, carrying their loot.

In recent years, the poaching of elephants has increased exponentially because of the demand for ivory in Asia, where it’s used for unproven medicinal purposes. Between 2010 and 2012, poachers killed more than 100,000 African elephants — a level of destruction that put the species on the road to extinction. Unlike many other animals, elephants mourn the death of their brethren, wrapping their trunks around the bones or carcasses of the deceased. 

I know that.

While the African lion population is also under threat, it is largely because their habitats are being destroyed by farmers and developers, not because the animals are hunted.

Kenyan authorities say they were making progress in the fight against poachers before the recent killing at Tsavo. Last year, the government deployed 550 new rangers. Advances in technology have allowed researchers to monitor herds using GPS trackers, gauging when they might be under threat based on their movement and speed.

‘‘We’ve increased our intelligence and our operations. We were having success,’’ Gathitu said. ‘‘That’s why we’re so surprised.’’

In Tsavo, investigators are searching for the men who killed the five elephants. Two suspects have been arrested. Security officials found a bloodstained ax and a hacksaw in one of their homes.

It’s not just Kenya where mass elephant killings occur. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, 30 elephants were killed in 15 days this year in Garamba National Park. The illegal wildlife trade is valued at $7 billion to $10 billion annually.

‘‘We are in an elephant crisis right now,’’ Iain Douglas-Hamilton, the founder of Save the Elephants, a nongovernmental organization, told the Washington Post recently.

Just two days before the Tsavo elephants were killed, President Obama announced during a visit to Kenya that he would introduce more restrictions in the United States to diminish the market for ivory there. The regulation would prevent the sale of ivory from African elephants across state lines.

But the United States makes up only a fraction of the international ivory market, and regulations in Asia remain loosely enforced.

And when they say Asia they mean....


"Zimbabwean government exports elephants despite protest" Associated Press  July 07, 2015

HARARE, Zimbabwe — Twenty elephants exported to China will be ‘‘better off’’ in Chinese zoos rather than in struggling wildlife parks in Zimbabwe, the southern African nation’s minister in charge of wildlife said Monday, dismissing animal rights protests.

‘‘Those elephants have gone to world-class zoos. They will get much better care but, of course, the lobbyists are always keen to ignore facts,’’ Minister of Environment Saviour Kasukuwere said.

Zimbabwe’s national parks are overpopulated with elephants and the Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority is seeking more aid for conservation efforts, Kasukuwere said.

‘‘There are ways of dealing with overpopulation, such as culling, sell them to countries with proper habitats, or do trophies. We have chosen a nonlethal way by exporting them,’’ said Kasukuwere.

The Zimbabwean government has ignored protests and pleas from dozens of animal rights groups to stop the sale of the elephants. The International Fund for Animal Welfare’s southern Africa office said in a statement, ‘‘Unnecessarily seizing wild elephants for a lifetime in captivity is a violation of conservation principles and shows a blatant disregard for animal welfare.”

End print version.

Conservation groups protested the exports, saying they were concerned by how the animals were rounded up, with calves separated from their mothers. The protesting groups were also concerned about the conditions of the zoos the animals are destined for.

The elephants were sent over the weekend to a park in Guangzhou, a city in the south eastern province of Guangdong, about 80 miles from Hong Kong, the International Fund for Animal Welfare said.


RelatedSwiss customs seize 578 pounds of ivory en route to China

Boston is a pretty big market, too.

It's all because Zimbabwe needs money:

"In Zimbabwe, trillions go for pennies" Associated Press  June 13, 2015

HARARE, Zimbabwe — Zimbabwe’s central bank says banknotes from its old currency, which collapsed and was discarded years ago amid runaway inflation, can be traded for American dollars. But 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollars will fetch only 40 US cents.

That’s a fraction of what collectors have been paying for the notes with numerous zeroes for years.

Zimbabwe in 2009 abandoned its currency for a system using the US dollar and South Africa’s rand after inflation hit 230 million percent.

Starting Monday, stacks of the old Zimbabwean bills can be exchanged for US dollars, in what the central bank says is an overdue plan to phase out the currency entirely.

Some people in the capital, Harare, said they disposed of their Zimbabwean notes long ago. ‘‘I used it as garden manure,’’ said Isaac Mutezowepasi, a street vendor. ‘‘Why would I have kept that dirt?’’

Others said they still have heaps of old notes at home, but won’t respond to the government offer, for posterity and in hope of future demand.

Five banknotes of 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollars were on eBay for $159 on Friday.


I guess that's why Mugabe and his government has been left alone for so long while all the complaints have stopped -- just about the time he converted to the U.S. dollar.

At least Americans take better care of their animals:

"New Bedford couple indicted on animal cruelty charges" by Sarah Roberts Globe Correspondent  July 10, 2015

A New Bedford couple faces animal cruelty charges after police found dozens of dead and abused animals at their New Bedford apartment in June, Bristol District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III said Friday.

Sabrina Harding, 23, and Jake Brousseau, 24, were each indicted on six counts of animal cruelty by a Bristol County grand jury on Thursday.

They will be arraigned on the new indictments in Superior Court at a date yet to be scheduled, according to prosecutors.

On June 10, New Bedford police got an anonymous call reporting a “foul odor” coming from Harding and Brousseau’s South Second Street apartment, prosecutors said.

Police found dozens of animals in the apartment, over half of which were dead. Among the dead animals were 10 birds, 11 reptiles, two rabbits, and one chinchilla.

The 23 surviving animals were in “various states of malnourishment” and included 11 birds, six reptiles, five cats, and one dog.

With the help of animal control and a local animal shelter, 20 of the 23 surviving animals have been adopted into new homes.

“The allegations contained in the indictments are very disturbing and extremely offensive to a civilized society,” Quinn said. “Animals bring great comfort and companionship to many people and deserve to be treated in a humane way.’’


Why would anyone do that to a dog?

They never got taken for a walk so they could drop a load?

"N.Y. man faces charges for killing puppies found in Revere" by John R. Ellement and Felicia Gans Globe Staff | Globe Correspondent  July 31, 2015

A 51-year-old New York man was arraigned in a Chelsea courtroom Friday, facing charges that stem from the deaths of two puppies whose remains were found in a trash bag in Revere last year.

Dominick Donovan of Long Beach, N.Y., is accused of joining with Jason W. Gentry of Swampscott to kill the puppies because the animals “were not meeting breeding standards” for the Donovan pinscher breed, which is named after Donovan, authorities said.

Both men are charged with two counts of animal cruelty and two counts of malicious killing of an animal, Revere police said.

Donovan pleaded not guilty in Chelsea District Court on Friday, and his bail was set at $2,500, said Jake Wark, spokesman for Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley. Donovan is to return to court on Aug. 26.

Gentry also pleaded not guilty at his arraignment in Chelsea District Court this week, and was released on $1,000 cash bail.

SeeSwampscott man pleads innocent to charges tied to dog deaths

According to a Revere police report filed in court, Gentry blamed Donovan for the death of the dogs found in Revere. Gentry allegedly told investigators that he and Donovan had decided to “cull the two dogs . . . since they were not meeting breeding standards.”

Gentry is also being prosecuted in Lynn District Court on 10 counts of animal cruelty and a charge of running an unlicensed kennel. He has pleaded not guilty in that case, according to court records.



"A Level 3 sex offender agreed on Wednesday to return to Massachusetts to face charges of killing a 25-year-old mother from Swampscott, authorities said. Jason J. Fleury, 37, formerly of Lynn, appeared in a Virginia courtroom Wednesday and waived extradition to Massachusetts. Jaimee Mendez’s remains were found on King’s Beach in Swampscott on Jan. 28; she had been missing since Nov. 6, 2014. Authorities have not disclosed the nature of the relationship between Mendez and Fleury, except to say they knew each other but were not dating."

Humans not treating each other much better.

Time to fly away from Massachusetts:

"Vermont can help to conserve declining monarch butterfly" by the Associated Press   June 29, 2015

MONTPELIER — Vermont may play an important role in the conservation of monarch butterflies, which are declining around the country, according to a biologist with the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

They don't make much of a buzz, so....

Biologist Mark Ferguson said Vermont’s meadows and old fields provide habitat for milkweed, which is a critical food source for monarchs. He says in contrast, increasing levels of herbicide use in large-scale agriculture in the Midwest appear to have greatly reduced the abundance of milkweed in that part of the country. Monarchs lay eggs on milkweed and the caterpillars feed on the plant.

Oh, is that what it is?

According to Fish and Wildlife, most Eastern monarchs spend the winter at a particular site in the mountains of central Mexico. Ferguson said as monarchs migrate north, they need to reproduce several times and need milkweed at each site to do that.

‘‘A monarch that leaves its wintering grounds in Mexico will never make it to Vermont,’’ Ferguson said. ‘‘Instead, several generations are born and die along the way, meaning that the grandchildren or great-grandchildren of the monarchs leaving Mexico eventually arrive in Vermont each summer. Because monarchs need milkweed to reproduce, anything we can do in Vermont to promote this vitally important species will help monarchs thrive.’’

White House science adviser John Holdren said last month in a blog post that pollinators are struggling, based on a new federal survey that found beekeepers lost more than 40 percent of their colonies last year, although they later recovered by dividing surviving hives. The number of monarch butterflies that spend the winter in Mexico’s forests is down by 90 percent or more over the past 20 years, so the US government is working with Mexico to expand monarch habitat in the southern part of that country, he said.

A group of insecticides called neonicotinoids that are used on agricultural crops, and on home gardens, lawns, and ornamental trees, may also threaten monarch conservation, the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department said.

‘‘Many of the best nectar plants are actually wildflowers that grow naturally and will provide monarchs with a good source of food if left uncut during the growing season,’’ Ferguson said.


Maybe their problem is they can't fly like an eagle (or even a duck, for that matter). Certainly, flying will get you there a lot faster than walkingcrawling or swimming. It will take a whale of a time migrating that way, and it might even kill you. Better keep your guard up because it has happened before. Some get lucky and are rescued despite the bad rap.

Sorry for being slow in getting this post done; however, if the oceans are where the heat is, why are the turtles suffering from hypothermia and pneumonia?

That's today's catch, readers. Hope you enjoyed it.


Grizzly Encounters and Expectations 

I'm in the middle of reading it and only am because it caught my attention as I was working this morning on new material going forward. 

The feeling here is mutual. I see it in the hit and statistic totals to a certain degree (always seem bumped up when he gets a hold of one of my links), but it's always more gratifying to capture an actual viewpoint of a, for lack of a better term, fellow warrior. I certainly don't obsess about it; I'm too far behind here for that.

I may be covering his east (and not that well or often sometimes), but he's tapping into the rest and beyond for me. I'm not always agreeing, and wouldn't want to be, quite honestly. That's when you have to start questioning anything; however, I'm still evolving and working through many ways of perceiving the world. After all these years, the truth of this world has gone from some rather comforting alternatives into really dark recesses that the propaganda pre$$ I'm reading mostly ignore and cover in the most vague ways if not. 

Anyhow, back to reading what I was reading and delaying the pos post I have coming for a few minutes.

(Further comment: no dis intended. Commentary lifted from other blogs is only posted here out respect. Still chewing over much what is said there, and will need more coffee to wash it down)


Woods Hole researchers raising money to study leatherback turtles with ‘Shark Week’ robot

Sharks aplenty at Cape Cod count

Cape beaches close after shark spits out seal on beach

I didn't know sharks could spit. No sh***ing.

Journal says Harvard center may have neglected primates

Don't go apeshit over it.

Scituate beachgoers warned of nearby great white shark sighting

Great white shark dies after washing up on Cape beach

Dentist speaks out about killing lion