Graduated from Penn State University in 1983 and landed my first broadcasting job at the flagship station to SUN Radio Network in St. Petersburg, FL as a producer of talk radio. In 3 months advanced to a network producer, then on air as a national eventually local weather reporter for the Tampa Bay area. Held a position in management as a trainer to new hosts and producers and later Affiliate Relations Manager, eventually in 1990 started hosting, Talkin' Pets. Left SUN radio several years later and worked with USA Radio Networks for 1 year. I worked with Business TalkRadio & Lifestyle TalkRadio Networks for19 years under the title of V.P. Affiliate Relations and Programming, later worked with Genesis Communications until starting a new network ATRN. Currently working with GAB Radio Network and with Josh Leng at Talk Media Network. I am still hosting the largest and longest running pet radio and internet show in the country, Talkin' Pets, for the past 29 years... My one true passion in life is to help to educate the world through interviews with celebrities like Betty White, Tippi Hedren, Bob Barker, Linda Blair and others, authors, foundations and organizations like the ASPCA, LCA, HSUS, AHA, WSPA on the ways to make this world a better place for all animals and mankind whom all share this very fragile and mysterious planet called earth. This is the only home we have so we all need to learn how to share and maintain it so that life for us all continues and evolves forever...
March 4, 2014—Elephants in iSimangaliso Wetland Park, located in KwaZulu Natal province on South Africa’s East coast, were treated for the first time with a contraceptive vaccine to control the population’s growth rate.
With the addition of iSimangaliso’s population, immunocontraception is now being used to successfully control elephant populations in 15 parks and reserves, including Tembe Elephant Park (commenced in 2007) in South Africa. Two other populations in KwaZulu Natal—Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park and Ithala—will also receive their first vaccination later this year.
Immunocontraception is a non-hormonal form of contraception that is based on the scientific principles of immunization through vaccination.
All three populations will receive three years of treatment under an agreement between Ezemvelo KwaZulu Natal Wildlife (Ezemvelo) and Humane Society International (HSI), with funding from -Ezemvelo, HSI and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) under the African Elephant Conservation Fund.
Although elephant poaching and trafficking in ivory severely threatens the survival of African elephants in several African states, in South Africa poaching remains fairly low. As a result, the country needs to manage elephant populations, especially in small enclosed parks and private conservancies, to slow their growth rates so as to prevent loss of biodiversity, to maintain ecosystem function and resilience, to reduce harm to human lives or livelihoods, and to avoid compromising key management objectives.
Research conducted over the past 18 years has resulted in a robust body of scientific work demonstrating that immunocontraception is a safe and effective way to control elephant population growth that has no effect on behavior. It is also reversible, allowing managers to fine-tune population growth.
HSI and its affiliate, The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), have funded cutting edge research on the use of immunocontraception in African elephants since 1996. The immunocontraception vaccine contains agents that, when injected into African elephant cows, causes an immune response that prevents eggs from being fertilized by sperm. The vaccine is delivered remotely by dart gun, making the technique minimally invasive and eliminating the need for anaesthetization. Use of immunocontraception is a preferable alternative to other less desirable, more expensive and difficult population reduction methods such as culling or capture and translocation which, ultimately, do not solve the problem because populations reactively increase as remaining elephants continue to reproduce.
Audrey K. Delsink, HSI’s field director for the Elephant Contraception Program in South Africa, said: “We are very pleased to be working with Ezemvelo and iSimangaliso on this project. We hope that more elephant managers will fully embrace and use this technology to control elephant population growth in a proactive, effective and humane manner.”
Andrew Zaloumis, CEO of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, said “Elephants were reintroduced into iSimangaliso in 2003 after a one-hundred year absence. President Mandela described this as ‘almost spiritual, a form of restitution ... an attempt to recreate the wholeness of nature so that we can live in harmony with its creator’s magnificence … so that the descendants of the elders of Maputaland, the generations of the future, too can experience this grandeur.’iSimangaliso today represents one of the world’s leading examples of the modern era of conservation and we are pleased to implement the latest technology in elephant population control within our park to effectively manage the numbers without negative consequences.”
Read more about immunocontraception of elephants here http://www.hsi.org/assets/pdfs/elephant_immuno_report_2012.pdf
About HSI: Humane Society International and its partner organizations together constitute one of the world’s largest animal protection organizations. For more than 20 years, HSI has been working for the protection of all animals through the use of science, advocacy, education and hands on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide—on the Web at hsi.org.
About Ezemvelo: Ezemvelo is the conservation authority for the province of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. The organisation has been in existence for over 100 years and is mandated to conserve and manage the biodiversity of the KZN province. There are 100 protected areas and Ezemvelo strives to provide a high standard conservation and eco-tourism product – www.kznwildlife.com
About iSimangaliso Wetland Park: South Africa’s first world heritage site was inscribed in 1999 by UNESCO for its outstanding universal values - ecological processes; superlative natural phenomena and scenic beauty; and exceptional biodiversity and threatened species. The park comprises 332 000ha of terrestrial and marine protected area and is one of the country’s premier destinations as well as a global treasure. Visit www.isimangaliso.com for park information.
ASPCA, NY Cares partner with NYPD Community Affairs Office
to help pets and pet owners in Queens
NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) Cruelty Intervention Advocacy (CIA) program is partnering with New York Cares and the New York City Police Department (NYPD) Community Affairs Office to launch ‘Operation Gimme Shelter,’ a pilot program to provide free dog houses to at-risk pets.
New York City’s recent frigid temperatures and record-breaking snowfall has increased the number of reports to NYPD about dogs left outside without proper shelter. Working on such cases together, the ASPCA has learned from the NYPD that many pet owners lack the resources or knowledge to provide appropriate housing for their pets. In a proactive measure to help animals in need, the ASPCA is partnering with New York Cares and the NYPD Community Affairs Office to launch Operation Gimme Shelter, a program designed to connect at-risk pets in the 113th Precinct in Jamaica, Queens with appropriate dog houses.
“The ASPCA recognizes that providing free dog houses and support can be an effective means of creating a better environment for these animals,” said Allison Cardona, director of the ASPCA Cruelty Intervention Advocacy program. “Much of what we do involves building trust so pet owners understand that our goal is to help both them and their animals. This is exactly the type of situation that the CIA program was built for—helping animals in need by providing critical resources to the people in charge of their care.”
“New York Cares is excited to team up with the ASPCA and NYPD to provide these important shelters to Queens residents,” said Gary Bagley, Executive Director at New York Cares. “This partnership will help us continue to provide holistic and innovative support to communities throughout the five boroughs.
In addition to a free dog house, pet owners will receive ID tags, one bag of free dog food, behavioral support for their dogs, and educational materials. The CIA program will also be providing pet owners with information on the ASPCA’s free and low-cost spay/neuter and veterinary services.
Earlier this year, the ASPCA announced the full citywide rollout of its strategic and pioneering collaboration with the NYPD to provide enhanced protection to New York City’s animals. With this partnership, the NYPD takes the lead role in responding to all animal cruelty complaints in the five boroughs, while the ASPCA expands its direct care support for animal cruelty victims, including medical treatment, behavior assessments and rehabilitation, and housing and placement. For cases outside of the criminal justice system, the ASPCA continues to leverage its innovative CIA program that gets to the root causes of suffering, including intervention in cases involving hoarding and the provision of critical resources to pet owners who find themselves and their animals in unstable situations. Since its launch in 2010, the CIA program has assisted over 4,000 animals that would likely have otherwise become victims of neglect.
To report animal cruelty in any of the five boroughs, the public is encouraged to call 311 or submit an online complaint. For crimes in progress, individuals should call 911. For more information on the ASPCA, please visit www.aspca.org. For more information on New York Cares, please visit www.nycares.org.
About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
About New York Cares
New York Cares is New York City’s largest volunteer management organization. New York Cares runs vital programs for 1,300 nonprofits, public schools, and city agencies to help people in need throughout the five boroughs, and does so at no cost to the recipient organizations. Since 1987, New York Cares has made it easy for all New Yorkers to work together to strengthen the city.
New York Cares’ 59,000 volunteers are hard at work 365 days a year, teaching children the joy of reading, helping low-income students get into college, providing job training to unemployed men and women, giving companionship to elderly nursing home residents, revitalizing public parks and schools, serving meals to homeless and housebound people, donating coats, and more. In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, we also deployed an additional 15,000 volunteers to help with disaster response and relief. Last year, New York Cares helped more than 400,000 at-risk New Yorkers. To learn more, visit newyorkcares.org.
Universal Pictures, StudioCanal and Silver Pictures present a 106 minute, PG-13, action, mystery, suspense, thriller, directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, written by John W. Richardson and Christopher Roach with a theater release date of February 28, 2014.
Groundbreaking Giant Screen and Digital 3D Film Features Unrivalled Access To Highly Endangered Species And Highlights Conservation Efforts To Repopulate Them in the Wild
Opens In IMAX®, Giant Screen, Dome and Digital Cinemas in North America Spring 2014
WASHINGTON (February 27, 2014)--The giant panda is one of the rarest species on our planet. A shy, elusive and gentle creature, they once ranged in great numbers between Beijing and the Himalayas. But now, after centuries of human expansion and destruction of their habitat, the giant pandas are on the brink of extinction, with fewer than 1,600 remaining. PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME, a groundbreaking natural-history film, captures for the first time in 3D on the world's largest screens the highly endangered giant pandas living in Wolong National Nature Reserve in the People's Republic of China. This new 3D/2D giant screen film experience gives audiences a unique glimpse into one of the most incredible conservation efforts in human history. The scientists' goal: to increase the numbers in captivity and, far more ambitiously, to return pandas to the wild --to their natural home. Presented by National Geographic Entertainment, this original production will premiere in 3D, 2D, 15/70 and digital formats and will open in giant-screen, IMAX® and digital 3-D cinemas around the United States and worldwide beginning spring 2014.
Directed by Nicolas Brown (Human Planet) and produced by Caroline Hawkins (Meerkats 3D), PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME, is an Oxford Scientific Films Production for National Geographic Entertainment and Sky 3D, in association with the Chinese Wildlife Conservation Association, Wolong Panda Conservation Centre, CCTV9 and Nat Geo WILD.
Narrated by Joely Richardson, the 40-minute large format film PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME follows the pandas at a significant milestone in their history. After decades of captive breeding, the Wolong National Nature Reserve has hit its target number of 300 giant pandas and now must tackle the challenge of reintroducing breeding populations of the species to the wild. Filmmakers were given unrivalled access to the Wolong National Nature Reserve with the support of the Chinese Wildlife Conservation Association and the China Conservation and Research Centre for the Giant Panda. Oxford Scientific Films was granted permission to film the rare release of a panda bred in captivity and to follow a group of pandas being prepared for the wild in a mountain habitat, a first for a Western film crew. Alongside the natural breeding program, the film also captures the captive breeding program, including footage of newborns, young pandas playing, and methods of encouraging pandas to mate.
"PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME will give audiences insight into the extraordinary strides that have been made towards saving the panda in the wild, but will also convey that much work has yet to be done," said Lisa Truitt, president of National Geographic Cinema Ventures (NGCV). "This is an important story, and National Geographic is grateful for the special access in order to feature the iconic, beloved, charismatic panda on the giant screen and in 3D."
Audiences will also get a chance to help with the conservation effort by participating in a texting campaign to raise funds for the preservation of the pandas' shrinking habitats. They can text PANDA to 50555 to contribute $10 towards a grant that National Geographic will award to the World Wildlife Fund for one of its panda conservation programs, details of which can be found at http://ngpandas.com.
PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME is a true exploration of the environment the pandas are being equipped to live in, taking audiences to the center of the fight to reveal the incredible lengths researchers are going to in order to save them from extinction. PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME follows China's quest to save the giant panda from extinction and the remarkable process leading to the release of a young male panda into the wild.
Very little is known about the behavior and breeding patterns of these shy mountain creatures. Breeding them in captivity largely began as a case of trial and error. But the plan is working and now the dream of releasing captive-bred pandas into the wild has become a reality. At birth, pandas are exceptionally vulnerable; blind and tiny. The cubs at Wolong National Nature Reserve's Bifengxia Panda Base are raised carefully and lovingly, developing playful and affectionate bonds with their keepers, and are carefully monitored by the vets and wildlife scientists at the base.
After years spent simply trying to breed more cubs and raise them to adulthood, the conservationists are now embarking on the next phase of their species-wide rescue mission: releasing these charges back into the wild. But there is a challenge facing them. Pandas raised by humans are not equipped to survive on their own. The last panda to be released, several years ago, survived for only one year before being killed by predators. The conservationists are determined to prevent tragedies like this from happening, and have developed a comprehensive wild training program for the pandas in their care. As a transitional environment, they use the breeding center in Wolong, where the pandas are distanced from humans and prepared to live a life in the wild.
Audiences are introduced to one of the residents, Tao-Tao, who is destined to be released into the remote LiTzu Ping reserve, where only 13 pandas remain. The hope is that Tao-Tao, strong and healthy, will find a female panda and introduce a new bloodline to this precious wild group. Tao-Tao could be the last chance of survival for this tiny population of giant pandas. Audiences are introduced to the conservationists at Wolong tasked to teach Tao-Tao to find water and food on his own and to recognize danger. Cameras capture Tao-Tao's much-anticipated release into the wild, an emotional culmination of years of work, carrying the hope for the future of the species.
PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME invites audiences to witness all of the extraordinary efforts to save the panda and introduce them back in to the wild. With the species excruciatingly close to extinction, PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME is an extraordinary picture of how pandas live and the astonishing measures conservationists are taking to ensure their future.
For more information on PANDAS: THE JOURNEY HOME, including Theater Listings, links to the trailer, and behind-the-scenes videos, visit http://ngpandas.com. Become a fan on Facebook at facebook.com/NatGeoMovies. Or follow us on Twitter @NatGeoMovies.
About National Geographic Cinema Ventures/National Geographic Entertainment
National Geographic Cinema Ventures/National Geographic Entertainment is responsible for production and distribution of giant screen, 3-D and specialty films. Over the last decade, NGCV/NGE has produced or released a number of successful films, including Oscar-nominated documentaries "Restrepo" and "The Story of the Weeping Camel"; giant-screen award-winning films "Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure," "U2 3D," "Mysteries of Egypt" and "Forces of Nature"; and feature-length films "The Last Lions" and "Life in a Day." Lisa Truitt is president of NGCV/NGE, and Mark Katz is president of NGCV/NGE distribution. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com/movies.
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K-10+ WATER SOLUBLE DOG SUPPLEMENTS REVOLUTIONIZE PET HEALTHCARE FIRST-OF-ITS-KIND PRODUCT CELEBRATES NATIONWIDE PETCO LAUNCH
NEW YORK, NY – (February 3, 2014) – The recent nationwide launch of K-10+, the revolutionary new line of pre-measured, single serve water soluble vitamin packets for dogs, is a hit with dog owners. K-10+ has created an entirely new product category, and in the process has redefined what is possible with pet healthcare. The vet-approved, breakthrough proprietary formula dissolves in water, is up to 9x more effective than ordinary pills and chews. The easy to use packets solve a very common challenge for pet owners, are affordable and can be administered anywhere.
Ryan Holden Singer, founder of K-10+, shared, “I created K-10+ after realizing how difficult it was to get my dogs to take their medications and supplements. I heard from so many pet owners who relied on bizarre rituals and tricks to get their pets to swallow pills and chews. I had to find an easier and more effective way to care for my dog’s health.”
Designed for maximum hydration and palatability, K-10+ is easily added to a dog’s normal drinking water, creating a stress free experience for pets and pet owners. The packets are easy to open and dissolve quickly when emptied into a bowl and filled with fresh water. It’s that simple.
The complete K-10+ product line includes Calming, Multi-Vitamin, Glucosamine, Omega 3, UT Support, and Senior Care varieties, ensuring optimal vitality and wellness, enhancing health and longevity, and providing a higher quality of life for dogs and their owners.
Added Ryan, “The response from the team at Petco, our exclusive partner, has been overwhelmingly positive. From store managers to sales associates and their appreciative customers, we are hearing amazing stories every day of how easy and effective K-10+ really is. We’re so excited that word of mouth is spreading quickly and that we’re really making a difference in the lives of pets and their caregivers. “
K10+ is available in Petco stores nationwide and online at Petco.com. Each box of K-10+ comes with 28 packets for a one to two month supply, depending on the size of your dog. All K-10+ products are proudly manufactured in the U.S. with only the finest quality ingredients and are veterinarian recommended. To learn more visit K-10plus.com, ‘Like’ facebook.com/k10plus and follow on Twitter and Instagram at @ilovemyk10.
April is National Adopt- a-Greyhound Month
Thousands of Greyhounds In Need of Permanent Homes
Framingham, MA-A 40 mile per hour couch potato is just waiting to be adopted into a loving and permanent home. What better time than National Adopt-a-Greyhound month to welcome a beautiful, graceful and gentle greyhound into your family.
April is National Adopt-a-Greyhound month and the need to place surplus racing greyhounds has never been greater. The Greyhound Project is spreading the message of greyhound adoption awareness to ensure that 100 percent of these greyhounds find caring homes.
Although many greyhound tracks have closed in recent years, the need to find homes for retired racing greyhounds has not diminished. Greyhounds retiring from the 22 remaining tracks located in seven states around the country still number in the thousands. These wonderful, elegant dogs are being cared for by adoption groups across the country as they wait to be adopted into their permanent homes.
“Greyhounds make great pets and companions,” said President of The Greyhound Project Melissa Cook. “They are graceful, gentle and can be a great addition to any dog-loving family. Many believe that regional race track closings have lessened the need to adopt these greyhounds into homes. That misperception results in a flood of retired racing greyhounds waiting to go to their permanent homes, particularly in regions with active tracks.”
“The need to move these dogs to non-racing states is critical and costs associated with accomplishing this present a real challenge. National Adopt-a-Greyhound month is a great time to welcome these wonderful Greyhounds into loving and permanent homes.”
The Greyhound Project works to support over 300 greyhound adoption groups nationwide. The charity also publishes Celebrating Greyhounds, an award-winning quarterly magazine written for greyhound adopters, owners, and supporters.
About The Greyhound Project
Founded in 1992, The Greyhound Project is a volunteer, non-profit organization. The mission of The Greyhound Project is to promote the welfare and adoption of greyhounds by providing support and information to adoption organizations, adopters, and the public. Please visit www.adopt-a-greyhound.org for more information.
Malibu, CA February 23, 2104 American Tortoise Rescue (ATR) (www.tortoise.com), a nonprofit organization established in 1990 for the protection of all species of tortoise and turtle, is sponsoring its 14th annual World Turtle Day on May 23rd. The day was created as an observance to help people celebrate and protect turtles and tortoises and their disappearing habitats around the world. Susan Tellem and Marshall Thompson, founders of ATR, advocate humane treatment of all animals, including reptiles. Since 1990, ATR has placed about 3,000 tortoises and turtles in caring homes. ATR assists law enforcement when undersized or endangered turtles are confiscated and provides helpful information and referrals to persons with sick, neglected or abandoned turtles.
We launched World Turtle Day to increase respect and knowledge for the worlds oldest creatures, said Tellem. These gentle animals have been around for 200 million years, yet they are rapidly disappearing as a result of smuggling, the exotic food industry, habitat destruction, global warming and the cruel pet trade, says Tellem. We are seeing smaller turtles coming into the rescue meaning that older adults are disappearing from the wild thanks to the pet trade, and the breeding stock is drastically reduced. It is a very sad time for turtles and tortoises of the world. (See slide show here.)
Tellem added, We are thrilled to learn that organizations and individuals throughout the world now are observing World Turtle Day, including those in Pakistan, Borneo, India, Australia, the UK and many other countries.
Tellem notes that biologists and other experts predict the disappearance of turtles and tortoises within the next 50 years. She recommends that adults and children do a few small things
30745 PCH, #243, Malibu, CA 90265 www.tortoise.com Nonprofit ID 93-1219374
that can help to save turtles and tortoises for future generations:
- Never buy a turtle or tortoise from a pet shop as it increases demand from the wild.
- Never remove turtles or tortoises from the wild unless they are sick or injured.
- If a tortoise is crossing a busy street, pick it up and send it in the same direction it was going if you try to make it go back, it will turn right around again.
- Write letters to legislators asking them to keep sensitive habitat preserved or closed to off road vehicles, and to prevent off shore drilling that can lead to endangered sea turtle deaths.
- Report cruelty or illegal sales of turtles and tortoises to your local animal control shelter.
- Report the use of tiny turtles as prizes at carnivals and other events. Its illegal.
- Report the sale of any turtle or tortoise of any kind less than four inches. This is illegal to buy and sell them throughout the U.S.
Our ultimate goal is to stop the illegal trade in turtles and tortoises around the world. Our first priority here in the U.S. is to ask pet stores and reptile shows to stop the sale of hatchling tortoises and turtles without proper information for the buyer, says Thompson. For example, many people buy sulcata tortoises as an impulse buy because they are so adorable when they are tiny. The breeders and pet stores frequently do not tell the buyers that this tortoise can grow to 100 pounds or more and needs constant heat throughout the year since they do not hibernate.
He added, We also need to educate people and schools about the real risk of contracting salmonella from water turtles. Wash your hands thoroughly every time you touch a turtle or its water, and do not bring turtles into homes where children are under the age of 12.
Suggested Tweet: Celebrate #WorldTurtleDay on May 23 with @TortoiseRescue
Washington D.C., February 21, 2014 -- The United Nations is highlighting the intrinsic values and contributions of wild animals and plants, particularly endangered and protected species, by declaring March 3, 2014 as World Wildlife Day. Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, will use this platform to increase awareness about the deleterious wildlife trade.
According to Adam Roberts, CEO of Born Free USA, “The global wildlife trade is among the most profitable illicit enterprises along with drug and gun running. Trafficking rare and exotic wildlife -- live birds, reptiles, elephant ivory, rhino horn, lion trophies and other species’ parts and products made from them -- is an international business, worth $10 to $20 billion annually. It is a wildly destructive and cruel enterprise that must be controlled.”
Born Free USA reports that over the past 30 years, lion populations have been cut in half to approximately 35,000; tigers, numbering 100,000 in 1900, are now fewer than 4,000; and elephants, decimated across Africa in the 1970s and 1980s for their ivory, are facing a poaching crisis once again.
Born Free USA has worked to stop the abhorrent practice of trophy and sport hunting of lions, rhinos, and elephants around the world. Roberts explains. “As the illicit wildlife trade grows, we are fighting harder than ever against the poaching and killing of elephants and rhinos for their ivory and horns in Africa; the hunting of bears for their gallbladders here in America; and the destructive practice of shark-fining happening in oceans around the world.”
The UN Assembly selected March 3 to coincide with the signing of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Washington, DC on March 3, 1973. The international agreement between governments of 179 Member States aims to ensure that global trade in close to 35,000 species of plants and animals does not threaten their survival. Born Free USA focuses on CITES issues and has been a respected vocal and active participant at its meetings.
“With World Wildlife Day falling on the anniversary of CITES, it brings an even stronger opportunity for the global conservation community and governments everywhere to speak with a unified voice and declare that there is no excuse for the indiscriminate killing, selling or captivity of wildlife and that it will not be tolerated,” Roberts says.
- The U.S. is the world’s largest importer of African lion trophies and parts, one of the main reasons why fewer than 40,000 lions remain in the wild. Between 1999 and 2008, 7,090 lion specimens, reported as being from a wild source, were traded internationally for recreational trophy hunting purposes, representing a minimum of 5,663 lions.
- A tiger in the U.S. can be purchased online or in person for as little as $300 -- less than the cost of a purebred dog. There are more tigers kept as “pets” in the U.S. (between 5,000 and 7,000) than there are in the wild, where fewer than 4,000 remain.
- By the beginning of 2014, only 5,000 black rhinos are left in the wild. Over 1,000 rhinos were poached in South Africa alone in 2013.
- Five states still allow bears to be killed solely for their gallbladders to create traditional Asian medicines and toiletries like shampoos and hemorrhoid creams. On the black market, bear gallbladder and bile can fetch prices higher by weight than gold or cocaine. In one instance, a bear gallbladder sold for $10,000 in South Korea.
- At least 73 million sharks -- many of which are endangered - - are killed worldwide to supply a demand for shark fin soup.
- Over 40% of the 234 primate species are now threatened with extinction.
- An estimated 13 million reptiles are kept as pets in the U.S. Most were captured in the wild or are the offspring of wild-caught parents. Tens of thousands of Burmese pythons - - formerly kept as pets - - have been let loose in the Florida swamps.
- More than 60% of the recorded primate incidents in the U.S. (bites or worse injuries to humans) in the past 10 years involved “pet" primates. More than 90 children and adults were injured in incidents occurring in 49 different states.
Born Free USA is a recognized leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade. Born Free USA brings to North America the message of “compassionate conservation” — the vision of the United Kingdom-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film “Born Free,” along with their son Will Travers. Born Free’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally. More at www.bornfreeusa.org; www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa; and facebook.com/bornfreeusa.
SINGAPORE/LOS ANGELES, FEBRUARY 25TH, 2014: Following the recent announcement that Spider-Man is the first Super Hero ambassador for Earth Hour, the global movement organised by WWF, Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone from the highly anticipated motion picture The Amazing Spider-Man 2 have chosen to back two separate projects on ‘Earth Hour Blue’, a new crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform for the planet.
With a message to inspire individuals to use their power to become a Super Hero for the planet, the new platform launched from Earth Hour’s global headquarters in Singapore will allow anyone to use their voice or their dollar to take action and support projects across the globe.
Now run globally from Singapore at the heart of Asia, Earth Hour has rapidly grown to involve hundreds of millions of people from all walks of life and global landmarks across 7000 cities and towns and 154 countries and territories.
Andrew Garfield, who plays Peter Parker/Spider-Man in the upcoming movie The Amazing Spider-Man 2, is supporting the Earth Hour Blue project ‘A Flame Called Hope’. The project aims to provide clean bio-gas energy for local communities in Nepal, thereby reducing deforestation and providing an alternate means of livelihood for families in the area.
This bio-gas initiative will ultimately help transform the lives of children in communities of Nepal’s Terai Arc Landscape, by allowing them to go to school instead of accompanying their parents to collect firewood.
Children in a village in Nepal sent Andrew Garfield a personal heartfelt video message to support the project, and their message “I love you Spider-Man” shows that the impact of Super Heroes can reach far beyond fiction.
Garfield says: “Earth Hour is launching the world’s first crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform for the planet, so you too can become a Super Hero just like Spider-Man.”
Emma Stone, who plays Gwen Stacy in the film, has chosen to support the Earth Hour Blue ‘Puppy Protectors’ project, which aims to train sniffer dog puppies and their handlers to track animals, find wildlife crime scenes, detect illegal trade items, and chase down poachers with the rangers on the frontlines of Chitwan National Park, Nepal.
WWF is working with governments across the globe to combat wildlife crime by protecting animals in their natural habitats, and is using sniffer dogs as a solution to finding poachers and illegal wildlife products around the world.
“Earth Hour gives you the power to inspire anyone, even if you’re just one person. And Earth Hour is much more than an hour. There are great projects from the crowd, for the planet, happening all over the world,” says Emma Stone.
Much of the success of Earth Hour has so far been fueled by the global mobilisation of people across the world taking part in the annual ‘lights out event’, which will be held this year on March 29, 2014 at 8.30pm.
In tandem with the crowd’s enthusiasm at events across the world has been Earth Hour’s massive digital presence, which since its inception in 2007 has grown to reach hundreds of millions of people via social platforms from across the world. Earth Hour envisions the new crowdfunding and crowdsourcing platform will generate environmental outcomes by harnessing these participants to help choose and raise funds for their favourite on-the-ground projects available on the new digital platform.
“Earth Hour is about using your power to make a difference. Anyone can make an impact whether by using their voice or by giving a few dollars, and now you can do it from the palm of your hand,” said Andy Ridley, CEO and Co-Founder of Earth Hour.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 director Marc Webb has already backed the ‘Power up a Ranger” project in Indonesia which aims to provide better equipment for WWF Rangers protecting Indonesia’s endangered wildlife such as the Sumatran Tiger, Elephant, Rhino and Orangutan and their forest habitat.
Earlier this week, Webb, Spider-Man co-creator Stan Lee, composer Hans Zimmer, and musical collaborator Pharrell Williams took to social media to share their support for Earth Hour, with Williams tweeting, “This time, he'll save the environment. Spidey is the first Super Hero ambassador for @WWF's #EarthHour @SpiderManMovie.”
The projects on Earth Hour Blue are all vetted by WWF, one of the world’s largest and most respected conservation organisations. These WWF vetted projects are creating solutions to the environmental challenges facing our planet.
Following the same open sourced approach of Earth Hour’s on-the-ground activities, anyone can be among the first innovators to engage with the projects and multiply their power for the planet. In addition, people can add their voice and input to certain projects, engaging far beyond financial support. Using these two sides of crowd-centric support, Earth Hour is hoping that the new platform will grow its efforts to cement its place as a year around movement. In Singapore, the focus will be on crowdsourcing pledges for local sustainability actions including raising air conditioner temperatures by one degree, water conservation, energy efficiency and reduction in use of plastic.
Sony Pictures Entertainment, the studio behind The Amazing Spider-Man 2, is contributing to a WWF-China and Earth Hour Blue project that provides efficient cookstoves to prevent deforestation in the habitat of the Giant Panda. Through its efforts, the studio will receive Gold Standard carbon offsets that render the entire physical production of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 as well as its publicity tour, carbon-neutral.
Expanding on many sustainability efforts over the years, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 became the most eco-friendly tentpole production in the history of Columbia Pictures. These environmental efforts, on set and off, were supported at every level – from producers, studio executives, and cast and crew and began as soon as the film went into pre-production.
“I’m very proud of the fact that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is entirely carbon-neutral. We made a commitment to be as eco-conscious as possible during production itself, when we took a special effort to think green and avoid waste; now, completing that process with Earth Hour Blue is a wonderful testament to what we can achieve when we all work together,” says Jeff Blake, Chairman, Worldwide Marketing and Distribution, Sony Pictures Entertainment.
So use your power and be inspired to be your own Super Hero for the planet at earthhour.org!
About Earth Hour
Earth Hour is a global environmental movement of WWF. Headquartered in Singapore, Earth Hour is one of the first opensourced environmental campaigns; it has grown from a symbolic event in one city into a global movement, crowdsourcing actions from individuals, businesses, organizations and governments to generate environmental outcomes. In 2014, Earth Hour Blue sees the movement enter the most exciting stage of its evolution, to be at the forefront of crowdfunding and crowdsourcing for causes, innovation and creativity for the planet.
WWF is one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations, with almost five million supporters and a global network active in more than 100 countries. WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the earth’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature, by conserving the world’s biological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable, and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.
About The Amazing Spider-Man 2
We’ve always known that Spider-Man’s most important battle has been within himself: the struggle between the ordinary obligations of Peter Parker and the extraordinary responsibilities of Spider-Man. But in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Peter Parker finds that a greater conflict lies ahead.
It’s great to be Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield). For Peter Parker, there’s no feeling quite like swinging between skyscrapers, embracing being the hero, and spending time with Gwen (Emma Stone). But being Spider-Man comes at a price: only Spider-Man can protect his fellow New Yorkers from the formidable villains that threaten the city. With the emergence of Electro (Jamie Foxx), Peter must confront a foe far more powerful than he. And as his old friend, Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan), returns, Peter comes to realize that all of his enemies have one thing in common: Oscorp. Directed by Marc Webb. Produced by Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach. Screenplay by Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci & Jeff Pinkner. Screen Story by Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci & Jeff Pinkner and James Vanderbilt. Based on the Marvel Comic Book by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. The film will be released in theaters internationally beginning April 16, 2014, and in the U.S. on May 2, 2014. #SpiderMan
About Sony Pictures
Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. For additional information, go to www.sonypictures.com.
About Marvel Entertainment
Marvel Entertainment, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is one of the world's most prominent character-based entertainment companies, built on a proven library of more than 8,000 characters featured in a variety of media over seventy years. Marvel utilizes its character franchises in entertainment, licensing and publishing, including licensing the Spider-Man universe to Sony Pictures. For more information visit marvel.com. ©MARVEL
TriStar, Impact Pictures, FilmDistrict, Constantin Film Production and Don Carmody Productions present a 105 minute, PG-13, action, adventure, drama, directed by Paul W.S. Anderson , written by Janet Scott Batchler and Lee Batchler with a theater release date of February 21, 2014.