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Archive for the 'Animal Politics' Category

Do you want to be an animal activist?

Animal Activist Training Class at Animal Place sanctuary, 3448 Laguna Creek Trail, Vacaville, 9 a.m.-noon Saturday (Sept. 27); $10 per person.

An interactive and informative training session with facts about farmed animals and tools on how you can help. Learn effective letter writing, legislation, tabling, leafleting, personal ways to help and more. Sanctuary tour is included.

Call 707-449-4814 to sign up, or visit and click on Animal Activist Training under Upcoming Events.

Want to get involved and help farm animals? This is a great program. Check it out. /Gary

Posted on Thursday, September 25th, 2008
Under: Animal Activists, Animal Politics, Animal protection legislation, Farm Animals | No Comments »

City of Martinez is NOT making it easy on the beavers

poor beavers

Dear Gary:
The Martinez Flood Plain project was intended to improve the capacity and health of the creek, and reassure downtown property owners that high waters could be managed.

Beaver supporters expressed concern about the plan to remove all vegetation from the east bank of the water between Marina Vista and Amtrak. We were initially offered a 2-foot strip of vegetation preserved, and eventually this was increased to six feet.
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, September 19th, 2008
Under: Animal Politics, Animal welfare, Beavers | No Comments »

Feds retreat on Northern Rockies wolf hunting plan

Breaking news! The Bush administration today announced it will abandon its defense of an ill-fated decision to remove the gray wolf in the Northern Rockies from the endangered species list, which would allow hundreds of wolves to be killed by hunters and state agencies.
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Posted on Thursday, September 18th, 2008
Under: Animal Politics, Wildlife, Wolves | No Comments »

Help stop legislation that’s harmful to animals

I just received a newsletter from Animal Place, a farm animal sanctuary, asking for help in stopping legislation that’s harmful to animals and those striving to protect animals.

Below are two bills that need action taken.
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Posted on Thursday, August 28th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal Politics | 3 Comments »

2008 California Animal Legislation — What’s up in Sacramento

Animal bills for 2008 as of June 13.

Many of the following bills have not yet been assigned to committee or set for hearing. More bills may be discovered. We’ll let you know if and when they are.

This information has been compiled by Virginia Handley of Paw PAC, PO Box 475012, San Francisco, CA 94147, 415-646-0622 (voice mail). See their Web site,, write or call for a copy of the 2007 Voting Chart.
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Posted on Monday, June 16th, 2008
Under: Animal Laws, Animal Politics, Animal protection legislation | 4 Comments »

Wolves removed from endangered list and will now be hunted

This information has been compiled from Associated Press stories. Sarcastic asides are mine.

Gray wolves in the Northern Rockies will be removed from the endangered species list, following a 13-year restoration effort that helped the animal’s population soar, federal officials said Thursday. An estimated 1,500 wolves now roam Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.

The feds giveth … and the feds taketh away.

“Gray wolves in the Northern Rocky Mountains are thriving and no longer require the protection of the Endangered Species Act,” said Interior Deputy Secretary Lynn Scarlett. “The wolf’s recovery in the Northern Rocky Mountains is a conservation success story.”

The restoration effort, however, has been unpopular with ranchers and many others in the three states since it began in the mid-1990s, and today some state leaders want the population thinned significantly. The states could allow hunters to target the animals as soon as this fall. That angers environmental groups, which plan to sue over the delisting and say it’s too soon to remove federal protection.

“The enduring hostility to wolves still exists,” said Earthjustice attorney Doug Honnold, who is preparing the lawsuit. “We’re going to have hundreds of wolves killed under state management. It’s a sad day for our wolves.”

Management … a.k.a. hunting.

Wildlife agencies in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming have already begun crafting rules for wolf hunts. Officials say the hunts will be similar to those for other big game species such as mountain lions and black bears.

Oh, boy … new hunting revenue for the states. That’s why they helped the wolf population to recover, right?

Here are some reactions to the decision to remove wolves from the endangered species list, also compiled from the Associated Press:

** “This announcement is great news. It signals that the state’s work has paid off and we’re ready to assume the full responsibilities of managing wolves.” (Wyoming Gov. Dave Freudenthal)

** “Far more wolves are needed before the species can be considered truly recovered.” (Louisa Wilcox, senior wildlife advocate for Natural Resources Defense Council)

** “We reached the delisting goals in the recovery plan years ago, and Idaho is ready to manage wolves. Unfortunately, if history is a guide, radical preservationists will sue the federal government over this decision.” ( U.S. Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho)

** “Unfortunately, the current state plans seem designed to lead only to the dramatic decline and need for quick relisting of the wolf. That’s not in anyone’s best interest.” (Rodger Schlickeisen, president of Defenders of Wildlife)

So how do you feel about wolves being taken off the endangered species list so they can be managed (hunted)? Please add your comments below. /Gary

You’ll find more details on the wolf delisting at

Posted on Friday, February 22nd, 2008
Under: Animal Activists, Animal Politics, Endangered species, Hunting, Wolves | No Comments »

Comments on the first Earth Day by President Nixon’s Attorney General John Mitchell

Brian Murphy sent me this interesting quote this morning:

“The conservation movement is a breeding ground of Communists and other subversives. We intend to clean them out even if it means rounding up every bird watcher in the country!”
— Attorney General John Mitchell, under Nixon, (1969-1972) during the first Earth Day 1970

Things have changed a little bit since then.
— Brian Murphy, Walnut Creek

Have they? /Gary

Posted on Wednesday, February 20th, 2008
Under: Animal Politics, Bird Watching, Conservation, Earth Day | No Comments »

Point Reyes National Seashore’s white deer are being slaughtered

The government is busy these days. First they want to kill wolves in Alaska, Montana, Wyoming … and now the National Park Service is killing the white deer at Point Reyes.

The park service says the deer are not part of the native ecosystem, and they want them to be gone NOW. They plan to kill 1,100 non-native fallow and axis deer. There has been considerable debate on this, with many people and organizations arguing that the deer can be controlled by humane management and not killing.

1,100 deer is a lot of death.

I received the following information this morning from Friends of the White Deer:
This week, a major slaughter (about 400+ deer already killed to date) of the non-native deer at Point Reyes National Seashore here in California is scheduled to continue, according to local residents in the area. Hired killers from a company called White Buffalo, Inc. are being paid to do the dirty job.

The deer have been there since they were brought to the National Seashore in 1948.

Helicopters will herd a hundred deer into a “hole” where they will be shot en masse.

The roster of those opposed to this inhumane slaughter keeps growing. The Humane Society of the United States issued a letter and called on Senator Barbara Boxer to end the “futile, destructive, and inhumane” extermination program.

California State Senator Carole Migden, U.S. Representative Lynn Woolsey, and California Assembly member Leno all support placing a moratorium on the killings until a better solution can be found. Elected officials are responding to the growing number of local residents, including many ranchers and hunters, who are strongly opposed to the inhumane killing. In addition, the Marin Humane Society, In Defense of Animals, and Wildcare, object to the specious “science” and inadequate consideration of alternatives as part of the National Park Service’s environmental impact statement.

“The Humane Society of the United States has become very concerned with the Park Service’s program apparently designed to exterminate non-native deer at Point Reyes National Seashore,” writes John Grandy, Senior Vice President, Wildlife and Habitat Program, HSUS. “We have contacted Senator Boxer’s office … to expand on these concerns and offer humane non-lethal alternatives for reducing vegetation changes caused by those species to acceptable levels, where necessary.”

You can find out more details on this at:


What can you do about it? Share this information with friends and ask them to check out the above Web sites. There has to be a better more humane way of resolving this problem than just slaughtering these animals. Thanks for caring! /Gary

Posted on Monday, January 28th, 2008
Under: Animal Politics, deer | No Comments »

Animals vs. the New Year


Senator Carole Migden and former Assemblyman Joe Nation have endorsed a letter asking U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, U.S. Senator Diane Feinstein and U.S. Representative Lynn Woolsey to put a moratorium on deer killing at Point Reyes National Seashore until 2010. The National Park Service has hired a Connecticut-based group, White Buffalo, Inc., to kill non-native deer in the park. There are an estimated 950 European fallow deer and 250 Axis deer in the park. The NPS claims the non-native deer are competing with the native black-tailed deer. More at:

The issue of feral cats vs. wild birds is rearing its ugly head in Benicia. In an attempt to balance the needs of feral (wild) cats with a diverse and sensitive wild bird population, city officials and local animal advocates are crafting new regulations for undomesticated felines. The cat people want to set up trap-spay/neuter-release programs and feed cat colonies throughout Benicia. Local bird lovers say this conflicts with the protection of local wildlife because the cats will eat the birds. This cat fight isn’t going to end anytime soon, if ever. The full story:

Bay Area conservation groups are launching an interesting program in 2008 to reconnect residents with the natural resources and values of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) with the first-ever “GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year. The year-long event is aimed at connecting GGNRA visitors with the 33 endangered species found in the park, through individual exploration and guided expeditions, and to encourage participation in conservation action items that will prevent species from going extinct. You can find out more at

Speaking of the Martinez beavers — A special flow device is expected to be installed in the Martinez beaver dam this week, hopefully before the BIG rains that are expected this weekend. This device is supposed to control the water level behind the dam to keep Alhambra Creek from flooding. Let’s hope they get it installed before the rain … and let’s hope that it works. You can keep an eye on things at

This is just a tiny sampling of all the animal-related activities that will be going on in 2008 around the country and the world. You can find out more at the Web sites of some of the more active animal-protection organizations:

The Humane Society of the United States:

Defenders of Wildlife: http: //

National Wildlife Federation:

Center for Biological Diversity:


Just one New Year resolution:
Figure out a way to take my couch pillow back from the cats so I can watch TV. /gary

Posted on Wednesday, January 2nd, 2008
Under: Animal Politics, Animal welfare, Beavers, Birds, Cats, deer, Endangered species | No Comments »


Should Mitt Romney’s supposed treatment of the family dog on a 1983 vacation be a presidential campaign issue?

The Boston Globe disclosed last week that Mitt Romney supposedly put the family Irish setter in an enclosed dog kennel and tied it to the top of his car for a 12-hour vacation trip. The Globe says it found out about this while researching a series of stories on the presidential candidate’s life.

Romney is the former Governor of Massachusetts and a current Republican candidate for president.

I wasn’t going to write about this. Politics isn’t my thing and I have no positions one way or the other on any presidential candidates, Republicans, Democrats, or whatever.

Then, when I got to work this morning, I found a couple of e-mails suggesting this might make good blogging fodder. So I did some research and I STILL decided not to write about it.

Something that happened almost a quarter of a century ago, much of it apparently based on the recollections of people who were children at the time, can be pretty sketchy. Did it really happen? And if it did happen, are all aspects of the event clearly covered?

And then while Googling the subject, I discovered that the blogosphere has gone berserk about “Romney’s Cruel Canine Vacation” … “lesson in cruelty” … “the dog was, basically, being tortured.”

Well, I wasn’t going to write about it until I saw that.

It seems like there are an awful lot of thoughts being bandied about on this subject without much actual knowledge.

Posted on Monday, July 2nd, 2007
Under: Animal Politics | 3 Comments »