Day: February 10, 2021

In loving memory of Mike Hill


Hunt saboteur Mike Hill was killed by members of the Cheshire beagles hunt on Saturday 9th Feb 1991.

Mike Hill became the first hunt saboteur to be killed whilst trying to protect wildlife. Mike was only 18 and for two years lived and breathed animal rights, not just dogs and cats but every living creature. He was a VEGAN, worked at both Heavens Gate Sanctuary and Freshfields Animal Rescue Centre, and was an active sab with Yeovil sabs and Merseyside sabs.

Mike was too nice a person for this world. There was no hurt nor malice in his soul.
He thought good of everyone and everything. He was quiet, unassuming, softly spoken, and gentle.
He lived and died for his beliefs.

No charges have yet been proffered against the two huntsmen.

No one has ever been brought to justice for his death.
The killing of Mike Hill has devastated his family, his friends, hunt saboteur groups all over the country and at Freshfields Animal Rescue Centre and Heavens Gate Sanctuary. His name, his love, affection, caring for all, and dedication to the movement will live on.

He will be in our thoughts forever.💚

The story: On 9. February in 1991, Mike Hill was deliberately run over and killed during a meet of the Cheshire Beagles.
His death came about at the end of the day’s hunting, when huntsman Allan Summersgill, with no-kill under his belt, boxed up the hounds in a small blue trailer being towed by a pick-up truck.

Mike and two fellow Merseyside sabs jumped onto the back of the truck in order to prevent the huntsman from driving to another location to continue hunting. Summersgill sped off down winding country roads for five miles with the terrified sabs clinging onto the back.
It is thought that Mike jumped from the pick-up as it slowed to take a bend. He failed to clear the truck and was crushed between the truck and the trailer. Mike died on the spot.

Despite the thud of Mike’s body and the screams of the other sabs, the heartless huntsman continued driving for a further mile.

The truck only halted when one of the sabs smashed the rear window of the cab. The sab was hit with a whip as he tried to stop the truck.

Once it had stopped one sab ran back to Mike’s prone body while the other ran to a nearby house to call for an ambulance. Summersgill drove off, later turning himself in at a police station.

Despite the details of the case, an inquest improbably arrived at a verdict of “Accidental Death” no charges

http://Jayaseelan TD

And I mean…when such “accidents” occur during hunting sabotage, the hunters are happy.

They think this will bring fear and anxiety to future actions. But to this day there are still hunting sabotages, and many with success.

Most likely the judges of that time were also hunters. Therefore most of them are not interested in finding out the truth at all.

And offenders are declared innocent. Even Hit and run leads to no accusation.

We live in a perpetrator-friendly justice and society

regards and good night, Venus

Who else is interested in WHO?

Today (February 9, 2021), the World Health Organization (WHO) wrapped up its investigation in China into the origins of COVID-19.

According to reports, the WHO’s team of experts from 10 countries concluded that it’s “highly unlikely” the virus leaked from a nearby laboratory, and is most likely to have jumped from a non-human animal to a human.

WET MARKETS: The WHO team spent time researching a particular market in Wuhan, but has not yet determined the specific animal or location where the virus first jumped from animals to humans.
However, judging from the significant role that animal farming has played in the mutation of respiratory diseases in the past decade, it would be no surprise if live animal markets, also known as wet markets, played a role (!!) in the evolution of the virus from animals to humans.

Last year, with the help of local Chinese activists, our investigators went to wet markets in China and documented that, despite promises from the government, many of these live animal markets were still operating business as usual.

Footage reveals living and dead animals in close proximity to humans and in extreme confinement and unsanitary conditions—the perfect breeding ground for zoonotic diseases to emerge.
Now, over half a million people have signed our petition asking the United Nations to call for a ban on wet markets that sell live and dead animals.
Not only are wet markets that sell and slaughter animals extremely dangerous, but they’re also horrific places for the animals who are kept in squalor and killed typically without stunning and in full view of each other.

INDUSTRIAL FARMS: Like wet markets, industrial farms pose a great risk to public safety and are a living nightmare for the animals in them.
While COVID-19 may not have started on a farm, many other infectious diseases developed in humans as a result of animal agriculture, such as SARs, H1N1, Swine Flu, and Q Fever, to name a few.

And just recently, a new respiratory disease was discovered in The Netherlands that could’ve originated in goats. If animal cruelty alone isn’t enough, these deadly outbreaks should be a wake-up call for change.

It’s only a matter of time before the next pandemic originates from a factory farm, and there’s no telling how widespread it will become.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Whether in China or here in the United States, raising and killing animals for food is a dangerous and cruel business.

The good news is that we all have the power to help stop it.

Every time you choose a plant-based food option over an animal-derived one, you’re doing your part to reduce the demand, and thus reducing the number of animals held in extreme confinement on farms.

Now more than ever, going vegan is the best decision for humans, animals, and the future of our planet.

MAKE A CHANGE BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE.

Try vegan and sign our Petition to close live-animal markets

https://animalequality.org/news/world-health-organization-concludes-covid-19-likely-jumped-from-animals-to-humans

And I mean…So it’s clear the virus did not come from a lab. Did they get any evidence of where it did come from?

Quote from the interview with NPR’s global health correspondent Michaeleen Doucleff in the NPR newspaper: So the team says the most likely hypothesis is that the virus started in a bat, jumped into an intermediate host, like a pangolin or mink, and then into humans. And exactly what animal that is and where that happened is still a big mystery. However, they said the pandemic did not start in the Huanan Seafood Market.

The virus was already circulating before then. And so they’re trying to figure out how the virus got to the market. And one possibility, they said, could be frozen foods “ (we have to stop eating pizza)

The interview ends like this:This investigation has raised more questions than it has answered”.

Therefore we feel enlightened and safe, and we rely on research!

https://www.npr.org/2021/02/09/965966786/world-health-organization-finishes-investigation-into-origins-of-covid-19

Nowadays, anyone who thinks they are well, comprehensively, and diversely informed is sleeping the sleep of the just.
In the medium and long term, a rude awakening is almost inevitable.

My best regards to all, Venus

No, Elon Musk, there is nothing ‘cool’ about experimenting on animals – Musk has wired up a monkey’s brain with an implant to attempt to make it play video games with its mind !

 

No, Elon Musk, there is nothing ‘cool’ about experimenting on animals

Neuralink Corporation, a company Musk co-founded, has wired up a monkey’s brain with an implant to attempt to make it play video games with its mind – can this ever be acceptable?

 

<img src="https://static.independent.co.uk/2021/02/09/11/GettyImages-1229894905.jpg?width=982&height=726&auto=webp&quality=75&quot; alt="<p>SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk

SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk
(POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Elon Musk, chief executive of Tesla and SpaceX, became the richest person in the world last month, according to Forbes. This week, he bought $1.5bn worth of Bitcoin, causing the price of the cryptocurrency to reach an all-time high. Love him or loathe him, what Musk does matters to millions. 

This is why it was so concerning to hear the news that Neuralink Corporation, a company Musk co-founded, has wired up a monkey’s brain with a tiny implant to attempt to make it play video games with its mind.

In a private speech given on the invitation-only social media app Clubhouse, Musk said: “One of the things we’re trying to figure out is whether we can have the monkeys playing mind pong with each other. That would be pretty cool.”

This is not the first time Neuralink Corporation has experimented on animals. The company has previously implanted wireless technologies into the brains of pigs. Musk described this as a “Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires”.

Despite the company’s claims that these experiments could help find cures for spinal cord injuries and neurological conditions, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia, many other scientists are less convinced.

Sadly, Musk’s actions are hardly an isolated incident. They reflect an increase in the number of experiments on animals taking place, despite mounting public concern and a growth in alternative approaches to scientific research. At leading laboratories in the US, experimenting on animals has increased by a staggering 73 per cent in recent years, while more experiments on animals are conducted in the UK than in any other country in Europe. The latest government figures revealed a total of 3.4 million experiments were completed during 2019, with more than half of these performed in universities, often paid for by the taxpayer. 

Take the recent outcry in Edinburgh, where the university was accused of using the widely discredited “forced swim” test to research antidepressants. This is where animals are placed in beakers of water from which they cannot escape, literally giving them the choice of sink or swim. While it’s unclear what provoking a drowning experience in small animals can teach us about the difficulties humans face battling depression, these experiments did raise awareness of some of the creative but barbaric ways we still employ, pushing the limits of animals in the UK. 

The harmful use of animals in experiments is not only cruel but so often ineffective. In fact, 90 per cent of drugs that successfully pass the preceding animal tests fail in human trials. Animals do not get many of the human diseases that people do, such as major types of heart disease, many types of cancer, HIV, Parkinson’s disease, or schizophrenia. Often the symptoms have to be simulated, to then be tested on. As a result, fewer than five per cent of medicines tested on animals lead to approved treatments within 20 years. 

Analysis of 27 “breakthroughs” in the UK also revealed there was a high degree of exaggeration by animal researchers in their findings. Most do not result in anything useful. Sadly, this hasn’t stopped the UK being the second biggest tester of dogs in Europe, including weed killer tests performed on beagles. Beagles are particularly useful to experimenters because they are a very trusting breed towards humans. These tests are unnecessary, cruel and not supported by the British public.

Yet, as we have seen at Neuralink Corporation, animals are increasingly not being used even to test medical or domestic products. Fifty seven per cent of experiments in universities are now believed to be in the area of basic research, much of it driven by the “curiosity” of university researchers. It can be a vicious cycle – many scientists need to perform experiments to be published but the data they are using for comparison is based on animal testing. 

It is obvious we all need to ask questions about the direction we are heading in. There are still too many examples of animal experiments being conducted, even when validated non-animal methods are available that are often cheaper, quicker and in many cases, more accurate.  

Science has performed admirably during the Covid-19 crisis, but whether it is in British universities or Silicon Valley, we can all clearly do more when it comes to achieving human-relevant science without suffering. 

Dr Katy Taylor is the director of science at Cruelty Free International

No, Elon Musk, there is nothing ‘cool’ about experimenting on animals | The Independent

Enjoy ! – Regards Mark

News from around the world.

News from around the world

French president Emmanuel Macron has said Europe should grow its own soy and that to depend on Brazilian soy “would be to condone deforestation of the Amazon”. The EU is the second largest importer of Brazil’s agricultural products after China, and Brazil is seeking to expand exports with a trade deal with the EU. More than 1m tonnes of soya used by UK livestock farmers to produce chicken and other food could be linked to deforestation, according to Guardian reports last year.

Outbreaks of bird flu continue to be reported across Europe, with hundreds of cases in poultry in France, Germany and Poland. Sweden was reported to be planning to cull about 1.3 million chickens after bird flu was found on a farm. There have been more than 20 bird flu cases on commercial poultry farms in the UK with all birds, including free-range ones, now required to be housed indoors. In Asia, South Korea is reported to be culling 19 million poultry to control bird flu outbreaks in the country.

Denmark is offering more than £2bn in compensation to mink farmers following its decision to cull millions of animals over fears that a Covid-19 mutation moving from mink to humans could jeopardise future vaccines. Denmark had been the world’s largest exporter of mink fur, but has now suspended farming of the animals until 2022. Sweden has also paused mink fur farming for a year, and there have been calls to ban the practice in Spain. A Covid-19 vaccine for mink could, however, soon be available to breeders. In the US, officials have recommended workers on US mink farms to be given the vaccine as a priority.

New strains of the deadly pig disease, African swine fever (ASF), have been discovered in China. The disease has destroyed a large chunk of the pork industry in the country since 2018, although it is reportedly recovering quickly. One beneficiary of the shortfall has been Spain, which reported a rise in pork exports to China in 2020. ASF has continued to spread in Europe, with 30,000 pigs culled after an outbreak on a farm in Romania.

Mealworms are sorted before being cooked in San Francisco
Yellow mealworm, a maggot-like insect, has been approved as safe for human consumption by the EU food safety agency. Photograph: Ben Margot/AP


Yellow mealworm, a maggot-like insect, has been approved as safe for human consumption by the EU food safety agency. Insects are seen as a source of protein with comparatively low associated greenhouse gas emissions. The biggest potential market is expected to be as animal feed for chickens, pigs and other livestock, rather than human food products.

Germany has approved a draft law banning the culling of male chicks from 2022. The government has been exploring the use of dual-purpose breeds of birds which can lay eggs and be reared for meat. It has also invested in technology to detect egg sex prior to hatching and dispose of male eggs earlier. Separately, an Israeli startup has announced that it is planning to go further and change the sex of poultry embryos as they develop, doing away with the need for disposal.

News from the UK

Non-stunned halal and kosher meat must be clearly labelled to give consumers the choice not to buy it, the British Veterinary Association (BVA) has said after a government review of slaughter regulations. More than 90 million cattle, sheep and poultry were slaughtered without being pre-stunned in England in 2018. There is no non-stun slaughter in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The BVA said animals not stunned before slaughter are “highly likely to suffer pain, suffering, and distress during the cut and bleeding”.

Egg producers have been left struggling after a collapse in wholesale trade during the pandemic. The difficulties in exporting post-Brexit have also added to a fall in wholesale prices despite positive retail sales. Some producers have warned the situation could lead to chickens being culled. One free-range producer has reported giving tens of thousands of eggs to food banks.

Pig farmers in Northern Ireland are to get more than £2m in government support after a Covid-19 outbreak among workers led to the closure of a food processing factory for two weeks last summer. The meat plant is reported to process about 10,000 animals a week. Some farmers faced additional penalties on overweight pigs. Production was also halted at Scotland’s biggest pork processing plant in Brechin in January after several workers tested positive for the virus.

The UK’s veterinary capacity is at risk post-Brexit, MPs from the environment, food and rural affairs select committee have warned. About 95% of official veterinarians, who undertake vital certification and supervision work in abattoirs, are EEA-qualified nationals. The sector faces an increased workload due to additional export checks, Covid and disease outbreaks such as bird flu.

New Zealand is backing the UK as it seeks to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, whose members also include Japan, Australia, Canada, Vietnam, Singapore and Mexico. The New Zealand meat industry has called for greater access to the UK market for its beef and lamb.

Finally, Kim, a 12-month-old Welsh-born sheepdog, has been sold for a world record £27,100. Although a Welsh speaker, the seller Dewi Jenkins said he trains his dogs in English to allow him to sell them across the world, including in the US, Norway, Belgium, France and Ireland.

 

Animals Farmed

A decade after an outbreak of Q fever killed 95 people in the Netherlands, there are worries about human cases of pneumonia linked to goat farms. The Q fever outbreak followed a period of rapid growth in goat dairying in the Netherlands and its aftermath heightened tensions around zoonotic disease threats, especially in the south of the country where the highest numbers of goat farms and infection rates were found.

Rabbits
Rabbits being skinned and dismembered at a slaughterhouse as featured in the photo essay: ‘Hidden lives: the animals behind the products we consume’. Photograph: Jo-Anne McArthur/Animal Equality

The EU has been revealed to be world’s biggest live animal exporter with more than 1.6 billion chickens, pigs, sheep, goats and cattle transported across a border in 2019.

In the UK, live farm animal exports to mainland Europe have come to a standstill post-Brexit. The UK government consultation on banning the export of animals for slaughter and fattening is due to end later this month.

Brazilian companies and slaughterhouses including the world’s largest meat producer, JBS, sourced cattle from supplier farms that made use of workers kept in slavery-like conditions, according to a new report. JBS said it had “a zero-tolerance approach to forced labour and also urge anyone who suspects or has evidence of individual or farm-level malpractice to report it”.

Outbreaks of African swine fever and Covid among workers in meat plants in Germany have raised questions over the consequences of the country’s fixation on “cheap meat”. In China, experts have questioned the effectiveness of new animal health rules in preventing another zoonotic disease outbreak. And news of plans to develop animal-only antibiotics has been criticised as a “techno-fix” for intensive farming practices.

A Welsh council has admitted it should not have granted planning permission for a 110,000-chicken farm in the “poultry capital of Wales” after campaigners crowdfunded a judicial review. Former free-roaming nomads in Tibet are facing a struggle for their identity, stuck between China’s push for more industrialised farms and Buddhist monks urging them to embrace vegetarianism. Finally, we’ve reported on the mounting death toll of people and animals in Nigeria as herders seeking dwindling reserves of pasture clash with farmers.

From the brilliant ‘Guardian’ (London) as always:

Animals farmed: insects for lunch, £2bn for mink farmers and the future of male chicks | Environment | The Guardian

Enjoy – Regards Mark

Sweden: 600 mink were freed from cages

From the Blog of “Animal Liberation Press Office”:

“According to media reports, 600 mink were freed from cages at a fur farm in Tingsryd during the night of January 22.

The same farm was raided by activists in September 2019.

We, Animal Liberation Press Office, have not received a statement in relation to the action, but you can read the report that was released after the action in 2019;

Sweden

In the early hours of September 3, 2019, all of the prisoners on a small mink farm in Hölkemåla, Blekinge, Sweden, escaped from the cages.

In total, about 1500 persons managed to get free.
We gave a helping hand by disassembling the fence of the farm and then opening all the cage doors. We removed parts of the fence using a wrench to ensure a way out.

Sweden-Mink farm

The fur farm was situated right next to a lake where we hope that as many as possible now get to live.

In a world where freedom exists only in moments of rebellion and insurrection, we still think that the possibility of life in the forest and lake is quite the opposite of that in a cage.

We do recognize that the already destroyed eco-systems and colonized nature is nothing like a dream, but since it is all that we have it is where we will go from our imprisoned existences.

Norway

A passion for freedom is what drove us to this hidden killing facility to increase freedom for all of us.

Our desire to share this moment of freedom with the minks is rooted in solidarity and love as well as anger and hatred towards those who dominate us and try to steal our lives.

We strongly believe that there is no limit to the things we can do, all we need is to make up our minds and pick a target”.

https://animalliberationpressoffice.org/NAALPO/2021/02/01/600-mink-liberated-from-swedish-fur-farm-tingsryd-sweden-2/

And I mean…The Swedish government decided on January 27, 2021, to ban fur farming in Sweden until the end of 2021.

On October 3, 2010, around 18,000 mink were released from a fur farm in Skillingaryd, Sweden. According to media reports, only 4,000 mink were recaptured and around 50 were run over by cars.

Sweden-2010

This means that around 14,000 mink have been given the chance to live in freedom.
Just one day later, on October 4th, another 4,000 mink were released at a facility near Vaggeryd, Sweden.
The action was one of the largest liberation actions in the history of the animal liberation movement.

In the same year, the largest animal liberation action in the history of the animal rights movement took place in Greece, where around 50,000 mink were freed from a farm

Since the Swedish animal rights organization Djurrattsalliansen published extensive research on fur farms in August 2010, the Swedish fur industry has been under enormous pressure, not least because of media interest.

Today, and thanks to Corona, the list of countries that have banned this cruel business is growing every day!

In Austria, Great Britain, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, and Macedonia, fur farms are prohibited by law.
A fur farming ban came into force in the Czech Republic in 2019

In the Netherlands, the second-largest mink producer in Europe that keeps chinchillas and foxes is already banned. The last mink farms should close in 2024 as the farms will close this year due to the coronavirus.

Then came Norway, Denmark …Only Finland persistently does the cruel business in the north.
In Germany, no more animals were kept on the last German fur farm in Rahden (North Rhine-Westphalia) in March 2019

Corona has dealt the last blow to this cruel business for a year.
Before that, however, it was also the economic losses caused by the direct exemption measures in fur farms that also contributed to the death of the fur industry.

Supported by our demos, petitions, and the educational work of the animal rights organizations

We sincerely thank the activists and wish those who have been liberated a long life in nature.

My best regards to all, Venus