The Stephen & Christine Schwarzman Animal Medical Center (AMC), the world's largest non-profit animal hospital, is proud to announce the appointment of Nicole Seligman as Co-Chair of the organization's Board of Trustees. She joins current Board Chair Robert Liberman in the role after serving the organization as Vice Chair.
Ms. Seligman brings over four decades of distinguished legal, business, and non-profit experience to AMC. She previously held high-level executive positions at Sony, including President of Sony Entertainment, Inc. from 2014 to 2016 and global General Counsel of Sony Corporation from 2005 to 2014. She also was a partner in the Washington, DC law firm Williams & Connolly. She currently serves as an independent director of three public companies – Paramount Global, MeiraGTx Holdings PLC, and Intuitive Machines, Inc. – and previously served as Chairman of The Doe Fund, a NYC non-profit that transitions the homeless and formerly incarcerated to independent lives.
"Nicole has been an incredible resource as Vice Chair of our Board, and I'm honored to welcome her as Co-Chair. Her leadership, experience, and dedication to our mission are invaluable to AMC and to the pet families of New York City and beyond," said Robert Liberman. "I can't wait to see all we can accomplish together."
"Nicole steps into this leadership role at a pivotal time for AMC," said Helen M. Irving, RN, MBA, AMC's President and CEO. "With unprecedented demand for veterinary care and a transformational expansion of our hospital underway, her stewardship and business acumen will be invaluable in ensuring our hospital continues to lead the way in veterinary medicine."
"I'm thrilled to help guide this incredible organization at this critical juncture," said Ms. Seligman. "AMC's commitment to world class emergency and specialty care, groundbreaking research, and superior postgraduate education are tremendous assets as we build towards the future. As a client and supporter of AMC for over a decade, I believe wholeheartedly in AMC's mission. There is no better place for pets, and I'm exceedingly proud to serve as Co-Chair of the Board."
About the Schwarzman Animal Medical Center Hospital of New York City
The Schwarzman Animal Medical Center is the world's largest non-profit animal hospital with NYC's only level 1 trauma center. Our team of 130+ veterinarians work across over 20 specialties to provide world-class medical care, and we are here for pets and their families 24/7. We are proud to have served the people and pets of New York, and beyond, for over 110 years. More at www.amcny.org
A pair of Alaska teachers needed good news after they lost nearly all their possessions when their house collapsed into a river swollen by a glacial-outburst flood and their cat went missing.
Elizabeth Wilkins was holding onto hope that if any animal would survive the house falling into the Mendenhall River on Aug. 5, it would be Leo, the couple’s resilient big-eyed, black-and-white cat who shows no fear of bears.
"I knew that he’s pretty smart, and so I felt pretty confident that he would escape and be OK somewhere," she said.
That faith paid off 26 days after the flood when Tonya Mead posted a photo of Leo to the Juneau Community Collective Facebook page. Wilkins immediately knew it was Leo, the "COVID kitten" they rescued in 2020. She rushed to meet Mead. "I just started walking down the street calling for him, and he just ran out and was like, ‘Oh hey, here I am, you know, like, where have you been?’ " she said.
The river flooding was caused by a major release of water from Suicide Basin, a Mendenhall Glacier -dammed lake in Juneau, that eroded the river bank. Wilkens and her partner, Tom Schwartz, moved into the home shortly before the flood hit, but they were away on a mountain biking trip to Bend, Oregon. Friends called and sent videos, warning their house was in danger of being washed away.
Ultimately, several homes were destroyed or partially destroyed, with others condemned or flooded. None of the destruction was as famous as the house being rented by Wilkins and Schwartz, with video of it collapsing into the river going viral.
The couple returned to Juneau three days later to sort out new living arrangements and to look for Leo. They returned to the site of the house, calling out Leo’s name and leaving food for him in the chicken coop.
By then, it seemed like everyone in Juneau was looking for him. There were plenty of sightings of Leo, but Wilkins said it appears that there are just many black-and-white unhoused cats in Juneau. When he did turn up, he appeared to be in good health.
"Leo was a little thinner, but otherwise totally fine," Wilkins said. "He ate four cans of tuna and went outside to kill a mouse. I imagine that is how he survived." She said it is amazing to have Leo back, though he currently is staying with a friend while they look for another place to live.
"It’s super joyful because everyone in their community was looking for him, and it’s nice to have some good news," she said. And just like Leo, some of their other possessions are finding their way back to them, but not in as good of condition as the cat. "People have been finding some things, like some of our clothes and pictures were in 4 feet of silt in someone’s yard down the Mendenhall River," Wilkins said.
A small gathering of royal enthusiasts and their corgis took place last Sunday in honor of the one-year anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's passing.
Roughly 20 British monarchists and their corgis gathered to walk in a parade outside Buckingham Palace. The late monarch famously loved the breed, owning various corgis since she was a child.
In all, Elizabeth owned around 30 corgis in her lifetime. Many of her dogs were descended from a corgi named Susan, which was gifted to her on her 18th birthday in 1942.
Adorable pictures of the parade show the corgis in different getups, including crowns and tiaras. The short-legged dogs were all photographed together with their leashes tied to gates near the palace.
The event's organizer told the Associated Press that she hopes the corgi parade will take place every year.
"I can’t see a better way to remember her than through her corgis, through the breed that she loved and cherished through her life," organizer Agatha Crerer-Gilbert explained.
"You know, I can’t still get used to the fact that she’s not physically around us, but she’s looking at us," she added. "Look, the sun is shining, I thought it would shine on us today."
Aleksandr Barmin, the owner of a corgi named Cinnamon, said that he saw the parade as a powerful reminder of the Queen's passing. "It’s a really hard feeling, to be honest ... it’s really sad that we don’t have (the queen) among us anymore," he said. "But still, Her Majesty the Queen is still in our hearts."
A pair of women in the U.K. have been sentenced to months in prison for torturing and killing a friend’s parrot after a night of drinking. Tracy Dixon, 47, and Nicola Bradley, 35, were found guilty of "sadistically" torturing an African grey parrot named Sparky until the bird died, according to local reports. "You together sadistically tortured and essentially killed Sparky," Carlisle Crown Court Judge Richard Archer told the women last month, according to SWNS News.
"The way in which suffering was caused to that animal is shocking," he added. "It involved spraying her with cleaning products; it involved daubing paint on her; and it involved hitting her with a tea towel." Tracy Dixon was sentenced to 25 months behind bars after being found guilty of torturing and killing a parrot.
The incident reportedly unfolded in July 2022 in the city of Carlisle. The two women went out drinking on the evening of July 30, and Sparky’s owner, identified as their friend, Paul Crooks, picked the women up and allowed them to stay as guests at his home in the city.
The women reportedly continued drinking once they reached Crooks’ home at about 5:30 a.m. while Crooks went to bed. He awoke hours later and found his shaving cream had been sprayed over Sparky’s cage, The Guardian reported. He reportedly instructed the women to leave the bird alone and left the home to run errands.
Nicola Bradley was sentenced to 25 months behind bars after being found guilty of torturing and killing a parrot. He returned to his house later that day and found his beloved bird dead and the women wearing his clothing.
Dixon and Bradley reportedly tortured the bird by covering her in furniture and metal polish, as well as gloss paint, and hit the animal with a towel, according to prosecutors. The pair were also accused in court of trying to feed Sparky to Crooks’ dog before throwing her into a dryer that had been turned on.
"It involved placing her in a tumble drier and turning it on, and it involved, once the door to the tumbler drier was opened and Sparky was gasping for her last breath, one of you ringing her neck," Archer told the duo in court, according to SWNS.
Both of the women denied causing unnecessary suffering to the bird during their trial and blamed each other for the crime. The women were sentenced to 25 months in prison each and are forbidden from owning animals indefinitely. African grey parrots are facing risks of extinction due to poaching, according to the Zoological Society of London's website.
Crooks has meanwhile grieved the loss of his bird, who he said would entertain his friends with renditions of "God Save the Queen" and theme songs for TV shows "Coronation Street" and "Emmerdale." He has suffered panic attacks and sleepless nights following the bird’s death, according to SWNS. "In terms of not having Sparky around anymore, it’s not been the same without her," he said. "The house is so quiet without her now, and she’s been a huge miss."
A Texas man was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison after he brutally tortured at least two cats, police say.
Shubhankar Kawle, 28, was found guilty of third-degree felony cruelty to non-livestock animals Thursday. He was initially arrested Oct. 20, 2021, at the University of Texas at Dallas, where he was a student.
The Hunt County Sheriff’s Office began investigating after a Quinlan resident noticed their cats were injured in "in odd and sometimes severe ways," according to police. One of the caller's two cats even needed their leg amputated due to the injuries.
The cats' owner set up a nanny cam to determine what the cause of the wounds were. Kawle was videotaped torturing one of the cats for five hours on Oct. 9, 2021.
The cat — whose name was Nimbus — had to be euthanized because of the severity of her wounds. A video of the torture was reportedly played in front of the jury.
"During this time, investigators observed several signs of extreme abuse, including stains on the walls of the residence and a metal rod, and obtained radiographs and medical history from the veterinary clinic that humanely euthanized the cat," the Hunt County Sheriff’s Office explained in a Facebook post.
"An SPCA of Texas Forensic Veterinarian determined from these that the cat’s injuries were consistent with the abuse seen on video footage," authorities added.
Hunt County Sheriff’s Office became aware of Kawle's behavior after receiving a call from someone who noticed their cats were being injured.
Kawle was taken into custody after the sentencing. After he was arrested in 2021, he had been released under a $50,000 bond.
"Torturing an animal is inhumane and illegal, and what Mr. Kawle did to Nimbus was not only horrific and heartbreaking, but one of the single worst cases of animal torture I’ve seen in my career," SPCA of Texas's Chief Investigator Courtney Burns said in a statement. "I'm pleased to see the perpetrator of this heinous crime brought to justice."
Several communities in Massachusetts are warning residents and dog-walkers to be mindful of coyotes after a string of violent encounters.
Police in the town of Hopkinton, about 32 miles west of Boston, said a woman was walking her dogs when a coyote snatched one of the animals. In Milford, not far from Hopkinton, a coyote took a dog named "Guido" from Pine Island Road on Wednesday morning, animal control officials in that town said.
The incidents involving coyotes follow another encounter in which a coyote attacked a woman in Fall River, a city about 55 miles south of Boston, earlier in the week. And residents of the Boston neighborhood of Jamaica Plain complained earlier this month of seeing a coyote carrying the body of a small dog.
Milford animal control officials said in a Facebook post that residents need to be more vigilant at dusk and dawn, which are optimal hunting times for coyotes. Police in Hopkinton said in a statement that residents should consider carrying a walking stick. They also said police "feel horrible this happened to someone’s fur buddy, they are members of the family and are a tremendous loss when we lose them."
Coyotes have become an increasing nuisance in some urban and suburban communities of Massachusetts in recent years. The town of Nahant decided late last year to become the first in the state to contract with the federal government to kill the animals.
Remember this story, a 42-year-old unnamed suspect was arrested for stealing a 2019 black Electra 3-speed bicycle at around 10:40 p.m. on July 15 in San Diego.
An anonymous tipster helped authorities identify the assailant. San Diego Police Department previously released video of the suspect playing with the victim's Golden Retriever, whose name is Ace.
The video shows the suspect walking away from the garage after stealing the bike. The dog enthusiastically leads him back in, wagging his tail and pacing. Video released by the San Diego Police Department shows the suspect playing with the household dog after stealing the bike.
"You're the coolest dog I've ever known," the suspect gushes in the video while petting the dog. "I love you, too." "You're a sweetheart, I want you to come home with me," he adds.
In the video, the suspect even calls out to see if Ace's owner is there. The suspect also alluded to the amount of objects in the victim's garage.
"Where's your dad? Your dad should not leave the garage door open," the suspect said while rubbing the dog's belly.
"How do you have so much stuff in your house?" the suspect asked the dog. "How do you have all this stuff, dude?"
The man eventually peeled away from Ace, who stood in the garage wagging his tail.
San Diego Police Department was able to arrest the suspect after getting an anonymous tip.
"We're thrilled to report the bicycle is back home, much to the delight of Ace, a very good boy," San Diego Police Department said in an Instagram post. "This success underscores the power of community collaboration. Thank you for helping keep our city safe!"
Candy Corn, a seven-year-old shorthair male tabby living in Salt Lake City, is hoping that the perfect forever home is out there that can handle his special medical needs. This "sweet gentleman" has been a resident at the Best Friends Animal Society's shelter since January 2022, the organization told Fox News Digital.
He has seizures, and takes medication three times a day. Yet "he doesn't mind taking his meds if he gets a yummy treat afterward," said the shelter. Candy Corn "loves hanging out with his foster parents and foster siblings, specifically other cats," the group added.
"As long as he gets some time to adjust, he does very well with new feline friends," said the Best Friends Animal Society. Candy Corn is a seven-year-old tabby looking for a forever home in the Salt Lake City, Utah, area. "He would love the opportunity to meet a family that would appreciate his unique needs and loving attitude," said the shelter.
While the idea of a cat in need of three-times-a day medication "might seem intimidating," the costs of the medication are about $100 for a three-month supply, said the shelter.
The Best Friends Animal Society, originally founded in 1984 in Utah, has since expanded to shelters around the country. "In addition to being the leading voice behind no-kill, Best Friends is recognized as a leader in all aspects of animal care and rescue, with practices and innovations that are leading the way in animal care nationwide," says the organization's website.
Cats in particular are at risk of being euthanized at "kill shelters," due to overpopulation. "While dogs and cats entered shelters at about an equal rate, cats made up 55% of the killing, and dogs were 45%," according to the Best Friends Animal Society.
Candy Corn is seven and has lived in the shelter for over a year-and-a-half. "Cats remain the most vulnerable in shelters, especially during ‘kitten season,’ the summer months when cats reproduce and kittens flood shelters." Earlier this year, the Best Friends Animal Society found that 57% of shelters in the United States are "no-kill," which was a substantial increase from 24% in 2016.
A shelter is considered "no-kill" if it has a save rate of over 90%. About 10% of pets who enter shelters may need human euthanasia due to behavorial or medical problems, according to Best Friends. Best Friends has a goal of making the United States "no-kill" by 2025.
Earth has sweltered through its hottest Northern Hemisphere summer ever measured, with a record warm August capping a season of brutal and deadly temperatures, according to the World Meteorological Organization.
Last month was not only the hottest August scientists ever recorded by far with modern equipment, it was also the second hottest month measured, behind only July 2023, WMO and the European climate service Copernicus announced. August was about 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than pre-industrial averages. That is the threshold that the world is trying not to pass, though scientists are more concerned about rises in temperatures over decades, not merely a blip over a month's time.
The world's oceans — more than 70% of the Earth's surface — were the hottest ever recorded, nearly 21 C (69.8 F), and have set high temperature marks for three consecutive months, the WMO and Copernicus said. “The dog days of summer are not just barking, they are biting,” United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement. “Climate breakdown has begun.” So far, 2023 is the second hottest year on record, behind 2016, according to Copernicus.
Scientists blame ever warming human-caused climate change from the burning of coal, oil and natural gas with an extra push from a natural El Nino, which is a temporary warming of parts of the Pacific Ocean that changes weather worldwide. Climatologist Andrew Weaver said the numbers announced by WMO and Copernicus come as no surprise, bemoaning how governments have not appeared to take the issue of global warming seriously enough. He expressed concern that the public will just forget the issue when temperatures fall again.
“It’s time for global leaders to start telling the truth,” said Weaver, a professor at the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria in Canada. “We will not limit warming to 1.5 C; we will not limit warming to 2.0 C. It’s all hands on deck now to prevent 3.0 C global warming — a level of warming that will wreak havoc worldwide.” Copernicus, a division of the European Union’s space program, has records going back to 1940, but in the United Kingdom and the United States, global records go back to the mid 1800s and those weather and science agencies are expected to soon report that the summer was a record-breaker.
Scientists have used tree rings, ice cores and other proxies to estimate that temperatures are now warmer than they have been in about 120,000 years. The world has been warmer before, but that was prior to human civilization, seas were much higher and the poles were not icy. So far, daily September temperatures are higher than what has been recorded before for this time of year, according to the University of Maine's Climate Reanalyzer. While the world's air and oceans were setting records for heat, Antarctica continued to set records for low amounts of sea ice, the WMO said.
WMO scientific adviser Lorenzo Labrador lamented the deteriorating air quality around the globe and cited “record-breaking wildfire season” in many parts of the world, including western Canada and Europe. “If heat waves increase as a result of El Nino, we may probably expect a further degradation in air quality as a whole,” he said.
A newly funded study will evaluate both the frequency and major risk factors for cancer in golden retrievers, a breed commonly affected by the disease.
The study will use data from Morris Animal Foundation’s Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, which is one of the largest and most comprehensive canine health studies in the world. The study will also incorporate data from Veterinary Companion Animal Surveillance System (VetCompass), a not-for-profit research project based at the Royal Veterinary College in London, England. VetCompass collects and analyzes data from more than 1,800 veterinary practices in the United Kingdom.
“The evaluation of major risk factors for canine cancer can highlight potentially modifiable factors that could reduce the risk of cancer for future golden retrievers,” said David Brodbelt, epidemiologist and co-project leader of VetCompass. “This could include for example, certain lifestyle-related factors such as diet and levels of exercise.”
Moreover, by delving into cancer occurrences, not only in golden retrievers, but across the broader spectrum of dogs using VetCompass data, this research aims to put more intricate and precise findings from the Study into the context of the wider veterinary population, Brodbelt added.
This work is supported by a $10,000 sponsorship from Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health USA Inc., an animal health pharmaceutical company. The sponsorship will support the hiring of a new canine cancer epidemiologist at the Royal Veterinary College who will lead cancer epidemiology research both at the college and within the study.
"Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health is dedicated to providing solutions to unmet clinical needs in oncology,” said Dr. Marlene Hauck, Head of Oncology Research at Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health USA Inc. “As such, this research will help determine the cancers that would benefit most from innovative therapeutic options.”
Dayton, Ohio – A dog who vanished a decade ago is back home with her family. Montgomery County Animal Resource Center (ARC) shared the amazing reunion story with Facebook followers this week, explaining that an embedded microchip is responsible for the unlikely reunion.
The animal welfare agency said:
Thanks to a microchip, Abby was reunited with her family after being missing for TEN YEARS.
The dog, named Abby, was severely underweight when she was first found; so weak that she could barely stand or walk. But she “turned into a happy, wiggly mess the minute her family came to pick her up.”
Abby is thriving back at home where she has already put on 16 pounds. Her family said that she loves to play and go for walks.
Remember the importance of microchips and keeping the contact information up-to-date! Welcome home Abby.
East Haven, CT – A puppy rescued from a parked car, with an interior temperature that climbed to a sweltering 122 degrees, has a new home with the fire department that helped save his life. The pup, dubbed Riggs, was surrendered by his owner and he will now be the Station Support Dog for the East Haven Fire Department.
East Haven Mayor Joseph A. Carfora said:
“He has a great temperament and will get along with the on-duty crews as well as be an ambassador to the department at public education and community events.”
Area residents helped choose the puppy’s new name. Riggs beat out “Cinder” by a narrow margin. In a press release, Mayor Joseph Carfora said:
“He is an official ambassador for the department. Riggs is an Eastie now.”
Longmont, Colorado – A Colorado couple is mourning the loss of their beloved cat, Basil, who died in a horrific cruelty incident that is under investigation by the local police. As reported by ABC 7 News, Holly Mathews and her boyfriend, Travis, fitted their cats with GPS tracking collars because the felines enjoyed in-and-out privileges.
The cats were adopted in Norway and they enjoyed hiking, biking, and other outdoor adventures.
Holly tells the news agency:
“They kind of defied what cats do. They like hiking and biking and have this full sense of this fullness of life. Particularly with Basil,They are indoor/outdoor cats. I was never willing to take that away from them after we moved here.”
On the evening of August 27, the couple got an alert that Basil was out of her normal area. They could see that she appeared to be moving as if in a car, so they got in their own vehicle and followed.
The trail ended at a riverbed where they discovered Basil in a trash bag – her body was still warm. A necropsy revealed that Basil had been shot in the head and then discarded at the river. Her owners think they missed her killer by minutes.
“So much anger and so much rage that someone did this to our family. [Basil] was my everything,”
Anyone with information is asked to reach out to Longmont PD at 303-651-8555 and reference report number #23-7880.
Two years ago, Denise Ballew met Bill and Pat, and their German shepherd, Charlie. Ballew, a lifelong dog lover, was touched when her new neighbors shared the story about how they had acquired their dog from a rescue group in California.
Ballew learned that Charlie had been with the German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County for two years and was in a separate area from all the other dogs because he did not get along with them.
Bill and Pat were looking to fill a void in their life after the death of their dog, Storm Cloud. The couple wanted to rescue a dog so they visited the rescue organization and walked the aisles of dogs, looking for one that they might have a connection with.
Despite the eager, hopeful faces that peered back at them from the line of kennels, none seemed to be “the one.” It was then that the woman showing Bill and Pat the dogs said, “What about Charlie?” The woman explained that Charlie was in a separate area because he did not get along with dogs. The couple was led to the building where Charlie was living; they found him in his kennel, looking sad.
But when he looked up into Bill and Pat’s eyes, there was a connection; the connection that the couple had been hoping for. When Charlie was taken from his kennel his tail began to wag and he jumped up to share a “slobbery lick” with his new friends. Suffice it to say, Charlie went home with the couple and it was a match made in heaven.
Charlie joined Bill and Pat’s family in 2015 and since that time, he has been living his best life. Charlie enjoys daily walks with Bill and the neighbors all know him. Charlie gets to enjoy his own special “doggie” ice cream whenever his people get their own treats and he has thrived in his home.
It was this story that inspired Ballew to write her first-ever children’s book. She had wanted to write a book for some time, but she struggled to find the words. Until she met Bill, Pat, and Charlie.
Ballew tells Animal Victory:
Pat’s true story of finding Charlie, after two years living in a rescue situation, it touched my heart deeply. Then, as I watch the incredibly close relationship that Bill and Charlie have, it’s so heart warming. The trust, the affection, it’s like Charlie see’s into Bill’s soul. It is such a beautiful thing. It’s a story that needed to be told.
The best part? People who have read the story have been inspired to rescue a dog – even a hard-to-place dog like Charlie. You can find Ballew’s charming children’s book, What About Charlie, through many outlets, including Target, Walmart, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon.
Chatsworth, CA – A gentle, albeit terrified, dog has spent more than a year of his life hidden in the back of an overcrowded animal shelter in California. The two-year-old German shepherd, Maxamillion, has been at the Los Angeles Animal Services – West Valley Shelter since July 2022.
Tragically, this scared boy has spent half of his life in a shelter, without a family or home of his own. An advocate shares what is known about Maxamillion’s history, writing, “Maxamillion was found by the LAPD panting and scared on July 18, 2022. He appeared injured and unwilling or unable to walk. His owner never claimed him.”
When he was brought to the shelter he was put in the back because the facility was so crowded. But kind volunteers did their best to help Maxamillion overcome his tremendous fear.
A volunteer began working with him inside his kennel by bringing cheeseburgers and sliced turkey for him and he started improving but was too afraid to leave his kennel. On January 27, 7 months after he arrived at the shelter, another volunteer was able to get him out of his kennel for the first time and he did better than she expected, but protested at times and seemed very unfamiliar with a leash.
Adding: He got better on leash as volunteers continued to work with him. ?
Imagine this poor dog’s tremendous fear…he was technically still a pup when the police found him. He likely escaped from his home and he was terrified to be out on his own. Rather than getting to go home, he was taken to an unfamiliar, scary building and nobody came to get him.
Now Maxamillion is on “yellow-alert,” which is the alert before a dog is tagged for the euthanasia list. This young dog may be led away to a stark room at the shelter where his life will be ended – through absolutely no fault of his own he may be put down.
Please help this pup find a reputable rescue group to take him in and build up his confidence. Please help Maxamillion have the chance to life out his life.
Located At: Los Angeles Animal Services – West Valley Shelter
Description: My name is Maxamillion and I am a neutered male, tan and black Mixed Breed.
Age: The shelter staff think I am about 2 years and 1 month old.
Weight: I weigh approximately 68 pounds.
More Info: I have been at the shelter since July 18, 2022.
This animal is only available to 501(c)(3) rescue groups and is not available to the public as he or she requires further behavior modification.
New Hope partners should contact Oliver directly Sunday-Thursday or the kennel supervisor Friday-Saturday. West Valley Animal Shelter: 818-756-9325 or 818-756-9326
As part of its 2023 investment in wild turkey research, the NWTF is helping fund state-of-the-art research that integrates multiple data sources – a first-of-its-kind approach in wild turkey management – to provide wild turkey managers with a more accurate picture of population abundance across the country. In 2019, a report in Science made headlines worldwide, stating that North America’s bird population had decreased by 3 billion birds since the 1970s. Researchers deciphered this staggering number using advanced statistical methods integrating wide-ranging data sources, including multiple annual bird censuses, historical data and even weather radar data that can quantify migratory birds. Now, researchers at the University of Florida want to take a similar approach with wild turkeys, painting a clearer picture of wild turkey abundance across the country.
“Currently, there are few methods to reliably estimate wild turkey abundance, meaning that managers and practitioners often rely on indices, such as poults per hen and hunter harvest, to track trends in populations,” said Corey Callaghan, Ph.D., assistant professor of global ecology at the University of Florida. “Our approach will utilize these indices as well as multiple large-scale datasets to develop a method to estimate wild turkey abundance at multiple spatial scales, which will benefit state agencies in decision-making processes.” Callaghan, along with colleagues Carolina Baruzzi, Ph.D., and Marcus Lashley, Ph.D. will develop models to estimate wild turkey populations at local-to-national scales, incorporating multistate data from various sources, such as citizen reporting programs like iNaturalist and eBird, as well as camera traps, hunter effort, telemetry studies and survival data, among others.
“Data integration of abundance is a cutting-edge statistical technique that is just beginning to be employed broadly,” Callaghan said. “These models will be used to estimate the trajectory of turkeys over the previous decade and predict future population changes.” And while the research aims to paint a clearer picture of wild turkey populations, both on a local and national scale, Callaghan and team plan on applying these methods in Florida – combining data of wild turkeys from across the state – to specifically analyze the importance of habitat connectivity and the Florida Wildlife Corridor to wild turkeys. “The importance of connectivity in dictating population productivity is commonly overlooked, yet commensurate with wild turkey declines has been habitat loss and fragmentation,” Callaghan said. “Understanding the role connectivity plays is fundamental to understanding how to strategically implement habitat restoration programs.” One program that will benefit from Callaghan’s research is the Wild Turkey Cost-Share Program, a collaborative endeavor between the Florida Wildlife Commission, NWTF and partners across Florida that annually contributes over $2 million to wild turkey habitat enhancements. Findings from the new research could provide insight in to where and what specific management practices are needed most. Callaghan predicts to have results for new national abundances as well as the habitat connectivity data published by 2025, potentially in time for the next National Wild Turkey Symposium. “There is a lot of data to consolidate and work to be done, but we are pretty excited about the prospects of this project,” Callaghan said. “This could be a game-changer for understanding wild turkey populations and tracking whether they are increasing or decreasing.” This project is one of 10 new research projects across nine states the NWTF is funding, with $582,374 invested among these vital projects. These projects are part of a nearly $9 million investment into wild turkey research in 2023, supported by the NWTF, its state chapters and its partners. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
PETA’s fieldworkers knew little dog Ada well, visiting her for a decade and always finding her tied up outside, her skin pulled painfully tight from the heavy mats in her neglected fur. But as a new PETA video released today shows, Ada finally left that lonely life behind after PETA was granted permission to rescue her, and today she’s a cherished member of a family—and the best friend of a little girl named Eliot.
Over the years, PETA’s fieldworkers did what they could for Ada, bringing her to one of the group’s mobile clinics to have her spayed, repeatedly grooming her and shaving her matted fur, and pleading for her owner to let her live indoors with him or allow PETA to find her a new home. Finally, he agreed to let her go. After a sorely needed bath and grooming, Ada went home with PETA’s shelter manager, Hollie Wood, where she formed an instant bond with Eliot, Hollie’s 7-year-old daughter. Now, instead of being alone by the propane tank, Ada curls up with Eliot in a warm bed, snuggles with her on the sofa, and jumps into the car to go pick her up from school—and she isn’t looking back. “It’s like she hasn’t even thought about her former life,” Hollie says, “and I’m so happy that we can give that to her.”
“PETA’s fieldworkers were determined to give Ada a chance at a real life, and they never gave up on her,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “After 10 long and lonely years, she finally has a best friend and a family of her own that knows every dog should be kept inside, cared for, and loved.” PETA’s work to free other dogs from abuse and neglect continues every day.
Although Ada is now safely indoors, countless other dogs are kept chained and/or penned outdoors 24/7, neglected, and mistreated. Every year, PETA’s rescue team finds dead or dying dogs confined to pens and/or with heavy chains around their necks. Dogs kept penned or chained outdoors often go without adequate food, water, shelter, and veterinary care and are limited to the same few square feet of space day in and day out. Chained dogs have frozen to death during cold snaps or died from heatstroke on sweltering summer days. Already this year, at least 135 animals have reportedly died from heat-related causes across the country, which is more than double the number of heat-related deaths reported last year or any other year on record.