Day: August 2, 2021

White orcas sighted off the coast of Japan

-Whale-watchers off coast of Japan’s northern island Hokkaido spotted two white orcas swimming together
-One was an older animal first spotted two years ago, but second was younger and had not been seen before
-The two orcas are not thought to be albinos but to have leucism, meaning they still have some skin pigment
-That means their markings are still faintly visible and their eyes are still dark instead of being bright red

The pair are part of a pod that contains mostly normal-looking orcas, but these two are thought to carry a gene which partially removes pigment from their skin – making them appear white

Whale-watchers off the coast of Japan could scarcely believe their eyes after catching sight of two rare white orcas swimming together as part of the same pod.

The orcas were spotted during a whale-watching tour on July 24 in the Kunashirskiy Strait, a 20-mile stretch of water between the northern islands of Hokkaido and Kunashir.

Mai, an employee of the Gojiraiwa-Kanko tour company, said one of the pair was older with slightly darker skin while the other was younger and had clearly-visible scratch marks down its back.

Japanese whale-watchers were stunned to spot two rare white orcas swimming off the coast of Hokkaido, one of the country’s northern-most islands, over the weekend

She said the older whale was first spotted around two years ago but it is the first time she has seen the younger animal and the first time she has seen both of them together.

‘It was the best day ever. This is the first time two white orcas have been seen off the coast of Japan, ‘she said.

The pair are not ‘true’ albinos, which is caused by a genetic trait that means the affected animal produces no melanin at all – the compound that gives skin, hair, feathers and eyes their color.

True albinos will be completely white and have red eyes – a color given by the red blood in vessels which are usually hidden behind the iris showing through.

Instead, these two whales are thought to have leucism – an umbrella term that covers a range of conditions where animals produce some melanin, but either have noticeably whiter skin or skin that is white in patches.

White orcas live with their black and white relatives in family groups
© Rina Nagashima / Gojiraiwa Kanko Whale Watching

That explains why the white patches that traditionally surround an orca’s chin and eyes are still visible on the two animals spotted near Japan, and why the eyes themselves are still dark.

It may also help explain the scarring down the side of the younger animal – which is particularly visible as the scar tissue seems to have healed in a darker shade compared to the surrounding white skin.

White orcas and whales were once so rare that they were thought to be a myth, but are becoming increasingly common, with scientists aware of at least five individuals alive today.

It is not clear exactly why they are becoming more common, but scientists theorise that it may be down to dwindling numbers of the whales and is a sign the species is in trouble.

As the population of a species declines, so does its genetic variation because the animals left have fewer potential mates to choose from.

White whales and orcas are becoming more common – which scientists think may be due to falling numbers of the animals which decreases their genetic variation, meaning rare traits crop up more often

Depending on the genes carried by those remaining individuals, it could accentuate some traits that were previously thought of as genetically rare.

That includes rare genetic disorders that hamper an animal’s ability to survive in the wild, threatening to accelerate the species’ decline.

While it is not known exactly what effect the leucism has on the lives of the orcas that inherit it, it does make them more visible – potentially hampering their ability to hunt, and attracting unwanted attention from rivals.

However, the trait is not always harmful. For example, Kermode bears are traditionally black but are increasingly being born white thanks to a recessive gene.

Scientists have found the trait leads to them catching more fish because salmon find it harder to spot them.

And I mean…Let’s just hope they swim away from Japan as soon as possible – Japanese hunters have a thing for whaling, whale murder and whale trading.

And it would be better if the media didn’t make so much fuss about the news.
Because there are many zoos that would also be interested in these beautiful animals, catch them in a tank and earn money with the captives

My best regards to all, Venus

USA: A New York City Leader Who Takes Animal Rights Seriously – Opinion By Zelda Penzel – President of PEACE.

WAV Comment – With both our organisations, Serbian Animals Voice and this site, we have supported animal rights issues in NYC, especially relating to that of carriage horses being used.  This is one issue dealt with below.    Zelda writes an excellent article (below), and no matter where you are in the USA, this is worth a read. An Animal Welfare leader NYC is Long Overdue – This article should be read by all Americans.

Regards Mark



Wanted: A New York City Leader Who Takes Animal Rights Seriously

July 30, 2021 | by Zelda Penzel

Animal issues were given short-shrift in the recent Democratic primary for New York City Mayor. In fact,  most of the major Democratic candidates did not come out publicly in support of any important animal concerns. In 2013, the last open mayoral race, animal issues were front and center in the election. This included a mayoral debate on animal issues attended by almost every candidate jockeying for support from the animal protection community. There is little doubt that Bill de Blasio’s promise to ban horse-drawn carriages on day one, a promise that was nevertheless broken, helped him win the election. 

This year, the Democratic primary’s focus was on crime, the economy, jobs, health care, housing, homelessness, children, and education. Important issues to be sure — however, major animal issues, a blight on our city, continue to be ignored. 

The still-low turnout of voters this year was perhaps indicative of the failure of any of the candidates to put forth a truly bold platform. Eric Adams emerged victorious and is the Democratic nominee for Mayor. Among others, he faces Curtis Sliwa, the Republican nominee, who also managed to get an Animal Welfare Party line on the general election ballot — clearly an effort to appeal to New Yorkers who care about animal issues but who might not otherwise support a Republican.

The major Democratic candidates were contacted by animal protection organizations to ascertain their positions on various issues but only a few responded. New Yorkers concerned about the deafening silence surrounding persistent animal crises staring us in the face felt they were being ignored by most of the Democratic candidates. 

The failing, archaic New York City animal shelter system is reputed by many as a ‘hellhole for animals,’ a place where many get sick, and others are designated as “behavior” risks, both of which are used to justify their killing. It is appalling and disheartening to know that thousands of healthy, treatable, adoptable cats and dogs continue to be destroyed in our dysfunctional and outdated New York City Animal “Care” Centers, even when life-saving alternatives exist.

These include legislation, the state-level Shelter Animal Rescue Act (SARA; bill A.7155), which offers practical solutions to these issues, and could save thousands of lives in our three New York City animal shelters, but is stalled in the State Assembly. While shelters around the country were emptied out by a flood of adoptions during the most difficult period of the pandemic, New York City shelters continued to kill homeless animals. Although money has been allocated by the city for critically needed shelters in the Bronx and Queens, as well as funding for desperately needed renovations in the Manhattan and Brooklyn shelters, these things have yet to happen. 

Eric Adams was one of the few candidates who did respond to an animal issues questionnaire, circulated by NYCLASS, however his responses were not made public. And while some responses regarding the sale of fur, live animal markets, and a ban on horse-drawn carriages may not be entirely satisfactory to animal advocates, Adams has indicated that he is “open to further discussion” and said he will bring stakeholders together. Adams has a long history of positive actions on behalf of animals both as a State Senator and as Brooklyn Borough President. They include opposition to wild animals in circuses; opposition to the slaughter of geese; encouraging people to eat more plant-based food; and support of the Foie Gras ban. He has also advocated for pet adoptions, supported feral cat initiatives, and pet-friendly programs in housing and homeless shelters.  

Sliwa, on the other hand, presents himself as an animal welfare candidate, but did not respond to the same NYCLASS questionnaire submitted in great detail by Adams. He has never gone into specifics about how he would make New York City “no kill,” a challenging paradigm, at best. He has no history of supporting other animal issues such as bans on carriage horses, puppy mill dogs and cats sold in pet shops, the sale of fur, circuses, rodeos, etc. New Yorkers want to know that any candidate seeking the highest office in our city cares about these issues that matter to us.  

There cannot be silence from candidates when it comes to the carriage horse issue, which is still dire. Since 2020, two carriage horses have collapsed in Central Park. One was forced to get up and continue to work. The other died. Politicians continue to look the other way but most New Yorkers care about animals and need a compassionate and savvy mayor to lead the way.  

There is a proposal  by the Compassionate & Responsible Tourism group that would substitute electric, battery-operated carriages for horse-drawn carriages, saving jobs and finding homes for the horses, in addition to giving a shot in the arm to the tourism industry, which has suffered greatly this past year.

This is not about reliving past campaigns, but instead offers a practical solution to resolving the carriage horse issue. Electric, horseless carriages currently exist in a number of cities around the world, including Berlin and Cologne, Germany; Dubai, UAE; and Guadalajara, Mexico, where they have been a success since 2017 when they were introduced. This proposal is worthy of serious consideration by the next City Council and mayoral administration. It’s a win-win for all.

As a long-time animal activist advocating for animal issues for over 30 years, I know that even though change is slow, it is inevitable. Animal Rights is the emerging social justice movement of the 21st century, as consciousness about animal sentience and the impact of animal agriculture on global climate change are raised, and justice and compassion take precedence over cruelty, indifference, and greed.

Anyone running for the second most important job in the United States — Mayor of New York City — must pay close attention to animal rights. Being a compassionate, visionary leader means caring for animals, and for those who care deeply about animals and vote!

Zelda Penzel is President of People for the End of Animal Cruelty and Exploitation, or PEACE.

Carriage horses: animal suffering

Text by Anke Schürmann (SOS Animal Mallorca)

Nothing has changed so far for our poor and battered carriage horses in Palma
And still many tourists use this terrible kind of “sightseeing” without even thinking a bit.

Right now, with these incredibly hot temperatures, it is absolutely hell for these poor animals.
Many of them lose their lives in the process or suffer really great agony.

And there are alternatives – and really good ones 🍀


In 2017 I wrote a post about great electric carriages (see below) that I discovered by chance in Münster / Germany at that time.
I was absolutely thrilled.
But these electric carriages are also being used with great success in Berlin, Dresden and other cities and they are very well accepted there.
Animal-friendly, environmentally friendly, almost noiseless and super comfortable – what a dream it would be to see that in Palma – and in other regions too … ❤


Of course, all of this is not so easy and cannot be implemented quickly, that is completely clear.
But we should NOT stop talking about it, stop to draw attention to it, stop to enlighten and also talk directly to people who want to go for such a trip (or who have already done it).

Just to wake them up – this is how a friend did it today in Palma.

And we can ALL do that – at least.
Because everyone who no longer gets on such a trip is a small success 🍀
I just keep hoping for an animal-friendly solution – someday ..

Text: Anke Schürmann

And I mean…Coachmen claim that horses need exercise and justify the cruel “tradition” with the fact that the animals have been used as a means of transport for thousands of years and are at least moved in front of the carriages instead of standing in the stable all day.
“The horse is a domesticated animal, bred for work for centuries. The animals are happy when we harness them, we notice that.” so the horse- carriage drivers

In reality, they talk that way because they don’t give a shit about the welfare of their animals. They are only interested in the cash register

Forcing the sensitive animals to continue running with brute force or with the whip, even in extreme weather conditions and weighing several hundred kilograms, is pure cruelty to animals.


In June 2018 two horses collapsed in Tyrol, Austria.
In the afternoon heat, two completely exhausted horses collapsed, one of them even died!

In Barcelona, ​​an animal had to be euthanized on the street after it collapsed while driving.

This form of cruelty to animals is happening right before our eyes – we should finally take action against it.
Meanwhile, more and more cities are deciding to ban horse-drawn carriages – including the European metropolises Paris, London and Barcelona.


Commercial horse-drawn carriages are also banned in Oxford, Tel Aviv, Delhi and Montreal.
An alternative solution is to switch to electric carriages, for example.

On the one hand, this would make the streets safer – on the other hand, cities could boast such an innovative attraction and attract tourists.
And there would be no more dead carriage horses on the street

My best regards to all, Venus

Europe: ‘No Animal Left Behind’ campaign reaches 100,000 signatures. Add yours now!

No Animal Left Behind campaign reaches 100,000 signatures. Add yours now!

15 July 2021

European citizens are making their voices heard by joining the #NoAnimalLeftBehind campaign.

So far, over 100,000 people from all over the European Union and beyond have signed the petition, and the number keeps growing.

Have you added your name yet? Please sign the petition now to ensure we are heard by the European Commission!

Europe’s animal welfare laws were introduced piece by piece over the last 40 years, but they are rarely enforced correctly, and there are serious gaps that leave millions of animals unprotected. 

2021 offers a very important window of opportunity for animal welfare in the EU: In the context of the Farm to Fork Strategy, a policy initiative by the European Commission with the overarching aim of making European food systems fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly, the European Commission is currently assessing the animal welfare legislation to evaluate whether it is fit for purpose. A review like this is not only rare and long-overdue, but is in fact also the first of its kind for animal welfare legislation.

We must make sure a full-scale review takes place, that our demands for the best possible welfare standards are heard, and that no animal is left behind

Regards Mark

Cattle Farming Is One of the Most Destructive Industries on the Planet.

Source Jo-Anne McArthur / We Animals : The tethering of dairy cows is still practiced in some countries. With the tether around their necks, they are confined to a few feet of movement.

This is a multi page article- page numbers at the end on left.

From Stacey at Our Compass – Thanks Stacey: – Regards Mark:

Cattle Farming Is One of the Most Destructive Industries on the Planet | Our Compass (

Cattle Farming Is One of the Most Destructive Industries on the Planet

AUGUST 2, 2021

“Natural”: Humans are the ONLY species to drink breastmilk from another species and continuing past infancy. Do you understand why you and so many others are lactose intolerant? Because you’re not a calf.

This is what you do to them. Violence is so normalized in animal agriculture that many believe that subjecting animals to suffering, pain, confinement, and squalor is beneficial to animals: since animals are bred to be dead, any existence “gifted” is considered beneficial regardless of hellish treatment, violence, and suffering. It’s convenient for humans to define others’ exploitation in manners that is comfortable to ONLY humans. And the “existence” argument is an exercise in desperation and logic failure. For sure, as a vegan who doesn’t purchase products tested on animals, I am entirely unconcerned with the nonexistence of those animals who are not “gifted” a brief life of pain and blindness and fear for toilet bowl cleaner.

Please also understand that even the “small/local” farms contribute to a global foundation of animal exploitation on which abject animal suffering and cruelty comfortably rests: it is all related, the required mass confinement and industrialized “production” and slaughter of 95% of animals globally consumed arose directly from those “idyllic” fantasies of Old MacDonald Farms . The promotion of “sustainable agriculture” is a fairy tale that already has been and has subsequently been discarded due to a billions-demanded source of cheap “meat” and animal “products”.

And if you want dog/cat/horse consumption to cease because it’s inherently barbaric, you must reject causing the inherent barbarism of chicken/pig/cow/lamb/fish/etc. consumption. If you get angry at vegans for demanding the antiYulin corps cease causing the same torturous treatment and violent death of turkeys and piglets, just remember that when you eat pigs, you cause/sanction/support the consumption of dogs and cats.

It is ALL related.

The ONLY ethical is veganism. SL

Source Sentient Media

By Nimisha Agarwal

The Amazon Rainforest is being cleared of an area the size of a soccer pitch every minute. Most of this is not for agriculture that directly sustains humans, but for cattle farming — to provide grazing land for cattle and land for growing feed crops. 

When we consume the products of cattle farming, we might feel distant from these concerns. After all, why should someone enjoying beef in one corner of the world care about what is happening to a rainforest miles away? Yet cattle farming presents a serious problem for us all. If the Amazon forests were to be destroyed completely to meet our demands, the world would experience more droughts, a warmer climate, and massive flooding. And this is just one of the examples of how cattle farming is destroying our environment, placing the future of people and the planet in danger.

So what exactly is cattle farming, and why is it bad for the environment?

Continue reading on Page 2

USA: Urge City Council To Cancel ‘Goldfish Swim’ – 1,000 Goldfish To Be Dumped In Pool For Children To Catch With Their Bare Hands.

Despite a public outcry, the city of Springdale, Ohio’s Parks and Recreation Department has reportedly scheduled another “Goldfish Swim” on August 8, in which 1,000 goldfish will be dumped into a swimming pool with children who will be instructed to scramble to catch them with their bare hands.

Please urge the city’s Parks and Recreation Department and mayor to cancel this cruel event permanently.

Take Action

Urge City in Ohio to Cancel Cruel ‘Goldfish Swim’! | PETA

Despite a public outcry in 2019 and a hiatus last year because of COVID-19, the Parks and Recreation Department of the city of Springdale, Ohio, apparently yet again plans to host a “Goldfish Swim,” on August 8.

During this chaotic event, approximately 1,000 goldfish will be poured into a community swimming pool, where children 12 and under “must catch them with their bare hands, no nets, no buckets or help from Mom and Dad” in the hope of taking them home. Being dumped into a pool filled with frantic children grabbing at them would obviously be a horrific ordeal for these tiny animals, who view nearly everything as a predator—and exposure to even trace amounts of chlorine can cause them to experience respiratory distress. Furthermore, because fish can transmit bacteria such as E. coli, such events pose a risk to the children, too. These animals need your help now!

Please urge Springdale’s Parks and Recreation Department and the city’s mayor to cancel this cruel event permanently—then, forward this alert to everyone you know.

Polite comments can be sent to the following individuals:

Charlie Wilson
Springdale Parks and Recreation Department