Day: August 8, 2018

Everyone needs a little break ..

 

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Dear friends,
I’m away for ten days, I am taking a short vacation in Brazil, invited by animal friends. In their large property, a colony of native monkeys has formed, and I want to see these highly intelligent animals.
I promise you to take pictures and documentation when the otherwise shy animals appear ..
I use it as a good opportunity for a short rest.

Our work in the new and (old) blog continues and we don`t let ourselves be lazy because of the stubborn heat, that plagues all of Europe.

Bye for now
Venus

Australia: New South Wales drought now affects entire state – Farmers Compensated (Dont they always ?) But No Talk Of What Climate Change Is Doing.

australia

Comment – Farmers being compensated as always whilst there is little talk of Global Warming and what should be done to tackle that !

 

New South Wales drought now affects entire state

 aus drought sheep

Source:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-45107504

 

Australia’s most populous state, New South Wales (NSW), is now entirely in drought, officials have confirmed.

A dry winter has intensified what has been called the worst drought in living memory in parts of eastern Australia.

NSW produces about a quarter of Australia’s agricultural output. It was officially listed as “100% in drought” on Wednesday.

The state and federal governments have provided A$576m (£330m; $430m) in emergency relief funding.

“There isn’t a person in the state that isn’t hoping to see some rain for our farmers and regional communities,” said NSW Minister for Primary Industries Niall Blair.

What has caused the drought?

Southern Australia has just experienced its second-driest autumn on record, according to the Bureau of Meteorology, with rainfall 57mm (2.24in) below average.

Less than 10mm of rain was recorded in parts of NSW in July, and drier than normal conditions are forecast in coming months.

On Wednesday, officials said 23% of NSW was classified as being in “intense drought”, with the remainder in drought or drought-affected.

But the problem is not confined to NSW – more than half of neighbouring Queensland is in drought. Parts of Victoria and South Australia are also experiencing dry conditions.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull warned that the country had become a “land of drought”.

How is it being felt?

Farmers have told harrowing stories of failing crops, severe water shortages and being unable to feed livestock.

Some people had spent up to A$10,000 per truckload of hay just to feed their animals, Mr Turnbull said.

“It’s like you are in jail every day,” Queensland farmer Ashley Gamble told the Nine Network. “You turn up here because you’ve got to turn up. It’s just depressing.”

What are authorities doing?

Farmers are already eligible for annual relief payments of up to A$16,000 each. Earlier this week, Mr Turnbull announced additional payments of up to A$12,000.

The prime minister said that although drought was considered “part of the Australian climate”, farmers needed help.

“What we have to is make sure we [the government] back them in when the times get as tough as they are now,” he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation earlier this week.

However, some have criticised the measure as “too little, too late” and too onerous to claim. Almost 20,000 eligible people are yet to apply for the grant.

Is this Australia’s worst drought?

No, the so-called millennium drought of 1997-2005 is often cited as the most devastating – it ravaged almost 50% of Australia’s agricultural land.

That event coincided with two El Nino systems, which are often associated with droughts in Australia.

Earlier this year, meteorologists rated Australia as having a 50% chance of experiencing an El Nino in its spring beginning in September.

clim 2

Pakistan: Pakistan to plant 10 billion trees in bid to combat climate change

Pakistan

 

Pakistan to plant 10 billion trees in bid to combat climate change

clim 3

Source:

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/pakistan-to-plant-10-billion-trees-in-bid-to-combat-climate-change-a3904961.html

 

Pakistan’s new government will plant 10 billion trees over five years to combat climate change, it has said.

It is an expansion of the existing “billion tree tsunami” project by new prime minister Imran Khan to restore 350,000 hectares of forest in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, according to Climate Home News.

As well as releasing oxygen, the trees are expected to help prevent flooding from glaciers in the north of the country.

Malik Amin Aslam, of the cricket star’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, told Climate Home News: “Pakistan is facing the brunt of climate change, so I think climate preparation, making sure our development is totally climate compatible, our infrastructure is resilient to climate shocks, is going to be very high priority.”

Pakistan is one of the countries most affected by climate change and PTI’s manifesto made several environmental pledges including supporting cleaner energy, water-saving initiatives and building dams.

Pakistan has more glaciers than any other country outside the polar region: more than 7,200 in the Karakoram, Himalayan and Hindu Kush ranges, according to the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD).

They feed the Indus River system, the country’s water lifeline. But data gathered over the last 50 years shows that all but about 120 of the glaciers exhibit signs of melting, due to rising temperatures, meteorological officials said.

Killer heatwaves ‘will leave parts of China uninhabitable by 2070’

 

A glacial lake burst in Pakistan’s northern Gilgit-Baltistan province in July, sweeping away villagers’ homes.

Such events are just the start, glacier expert and PMD head Ghulam Rasul told news agency Reuters this week.

“The disasters caused by glacier outbursts in these areas will not stop here. They will continue in the future because there are so many glaciers at risk of bursting,” he said.

Years of deforestation, combined with climate change, have led to a spike in temperatures in the region, which has caused glaciers to melt, Rasul said.

Over the past 80 years, he said, the average temperature in Gilgit-Baltistan has increased by 1.4C compared to a rise of 0.6C in the lower-lying regions of Sindh, Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

More about: | climate change

 

Australia: Do you know what Mulesing is ?

australia

 

Do you know what Mulesing is ?

 Comment – and to think that Aus sheep suffer this before they suffer the live export trade !

Mule 1

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mulesing

Mulesing is the removal of strips of wool-bearing skin from around the breech (buttocks) of a sheep to prevent flystrike (myiasis).[1] The wool around the buttocks can retain feces and urine, which attracts flies.

The scar tissue that grows over the wound does not grow wool, so is less likely to attract the flies that cause flystrike.

Mulesing is a common practice in Australia for this purpose, particularly on highly wrinkled Merino sheep.[1] Mulesing is considered by some to be a skilled surgical task.[2] Mulesing can only affect flystrike on the area cut out and has no effect on flystrike on any other part of the animal’s body.

Mulesing is a controversial practice. The National Farmers Federation of Australia says that “mulesing remains the most effective practical way to eliminate the risk of ‘flystrike’ in sheep” and that “without mulesing up to 3,000,000 sheep a year could die a slow and agonising death from flystrike”.[3]

The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) “recognises the welfare implications of mulesing of sheep. However, in the absence of more humane alternatives for preventing breech strike, the AVA accepts that the practice of mulesing should continue as a sheep husbandry procedure”. The AVA also supports the use of analgesics and the accreditation of mulesing practitioners.[4]

The Australian Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals accepts mulesing when the risk of flystrike is very high, when it is done properly, and even then only as a last resort.[5] The animal rights organisation PETA strongly opposes mulesing, says the practice is cruel and painful, and that more humane alternatives exist,[6] and claim that sheep can be spared maggot infestation through more humane methods, including special diets and spray washing.[7]

In July 2009, representatives of the Australian wool industry scrapped an earlier promise, made in November 2004, to phase out the practice of mulesing in Australia by 31 December 2010.[1][8][9] Mulesing is being phased out in New Zealand.[10]

 Mule 2

Mulesing is a procedure which, in Australia, is carried out by a person who has completed the mandatory accreditation and training programme, usually a professional mulesing contractor.[1]

While the lamb is under restraint (typically in a marking cradle), the wrinkled skin in the animal’s breech (rump area) is cut away from the perianal region down to the top of the hindlimbs. Originally, the procedure was typically performed with modified wool-trimming metal shears, but now there are similar metal shears designed specifically for mulesing. In addition, the tail is docked and the remaining stump is sometimes skinned.[13] The cuts are executed to avoid affecting underlying muscle tissue.

The New South Wales Department of Primary Industries states in the Standard Operating Procedures that, “While the operation causes some pain, no pre or post operative pain relief measures are used”. Antiseptics, anaesthesia and painkillers are not required by Australian law during or after the procedure but are often applied, as the procedure is known to be painful to the animal.[1][2] Products have been approved for pain relief during the procedure, including Tri-Solfen. The minor use permit for Tri-Solfen[14] makes the product available for use by both veterinarians and sheep industry employees, such as mulesing contractors and graziers.[15]

Mule 3

After a heavy mules, non-wooled skin around the anus (and vulva in ewes) is pulled tight, the cut heals and results in smooth scar tissue that does not get fouled by fæces or urine. Most sheep have a light mules which does not leave the skin bare, but simply removes the skin wrinkle leaving a reduced area to grow wool and stain.[13]

When managed according to the standards, policies and procedures developed by the CSIRO, lambs are normally mulesed a few weeks after birth. The operation usually takes less than a minute. Standard practice is to do this operation simultaneously with other procedures such as ear marking, tail docking, and vaccination. Because the procedure removes skin, not any underlying flesh or structure, there is little blood loss from the cut other than a minor oozing on the edges of the cut skin.

Mulesed lambs should be released onto clean pasture. The ewes and suckling lambs should receive minimal disturbance until all wounds are completely healed (about four weeks). Observation should be carried out from a distance.[1]

Mulesing should be completed well before the flystrike season, or else chemical protection should be provided to reduce risk to the lambs and ewes.

Lambs that are slaughtered soon after weaning generally do not need mulesing because they can be protected by chemical treatment for the short time they are at risk.[16]

Comparison to crutching

Mulesing is different from crutching. Crutching is the mechanical removal of wool around the tail, anus (and vulva in ewes) in breeds of sheep with woolly points where this is necessary. Mulesing is the removal of skin to provide permanent resistance to breech strike in Merino sheep. Other breeds tend to have less loose skin, and wool, so close to the tail and may have less dense wool.

Crutching has to be repeated at regular intervals as the wool grows continuously. Frequent crutching of Merinos reduces the incidence of flystrike, but not as much as mulesing.[citation needed]

At the time mulesing was invented, crutching was done with blade shears. In Australia, these have been almost universally replaced with machine shears. Hand shears were being used when Mules inadvertently carried out the procedure during crutching. Mulesing would not inadvertently occur using modern machine shears.

 

Non-surgical alternatives

Several non-surgical alternatives are currently being researched:

  • Insecticides: Any number of insecticides are now available for prevention of fly strike.[40] and even early reviews proclaimed the effectiveness of using dip across the whole animal, rather than cutting one small portion that left the rest of the animal still susceptible “dipping is still the most cost effective means of protecting sheep from flystrike”. [41]
  • Topical protein-based treatments which kill wool follicles and tighten skin in the breech area (intradermal injections)[39]
  • Biological control of blowflies.[12]
  • Plastic clips on the sheep’s skin folds which act like castration bands, removing the skin (breech clips).[39]
  • Tea tree oil as a 1% formulation dip where tests have shown a 100% kill rate of first stage maggots and a strong repellent effect against adult flies, which prevented eggs being laid on the wool for up to six weeks.[42]

USA: Trump to Change The ESA – Bad News For Animals.

USA

ESA 1

Hi Mark,

It’s been heartbreaking to watch a mother orca push around her dead calf for more than a week off the West Coast. She’s been trying to keep its head above water and, in her grief, is now falling behind her family.

Only 75 of these endangered West Coast orcas are left in existence — a 30-year low. We’ve launched a lawsuit in defense of these beautiful creatures.

Southern Resident killer whales are one of the most endangered species on the planet, but the Trump administration is dragging its feet in granting protection.

These orcas are exactly the kind of species the Endangered Species Act is meant for. They need immediate action to increase their food supply of chinook salmon. Our new lawsuit seeks a protected area for these whales so they have enough food and are spared from vessel noise, motor boat traffic and water pollution.

Now Trump and his right-wing anti-wildlife cronies in Congress are trying to weaken the Act as a gift to big business and industry, who will be able to develop, bulldoze and drill all over the habitat of species struggling to live.

Orcas will vanish. So too will polar bears in the Arctic, where oil and gas companies will pillage polar bear habitat.

Trump, Interior Secretary Zinke and Congress are doing all they can to undercut protections for wildlife. If Trump’s new rules go into effect, and without immediate protection, West Coast orcas and other species will be lost forever.

This is all part of the most severe, dangerous threat to the Endangered Species Act we’ve ever seen. We can’t let these attacks go through.

We need you with us to fight for wildlife, endangered species and the laws they depend on to survive.

Please give to our Trump Resistance Fund today and have your gift doubled.

For the wild,

ESA 2

 

 

Kierán Suckling
Executive Director
Center for Biological Diversity

P.S. We’re fighting for endangered species day in, day out. The best way to support that fight is by joining Wild Uprising and starting an automatic monthly donation.