Day: August 26, 2021

Spain-Mar Menor: just a green soup!

GEO: 08/24/2021
A disaster strikes in the nature and tourist paradise of Mar Menor.
Tons of dead fish, shrimps and crabs have been rescued from the water for days

Dead marine animals have been washing up on the once beautiful beaches of Mar Menor for days © REUTERS / Eva Manez

Environmental catastrophe in Europe’s largest salt water lagoon: In the Mar Menor (the “Little Sea”) in southeastern Spain, around 4.5 tons of dead fish and crabs were taken out of the water within seven days, according to the newspaper “ABC” and other media on Reported Monday, citing the government of the Murcia region.
Authorities and environmentalists attribute the mass deaths to a lack of oxygen, which is caused by the high temperatures and also by pollution.

The head of government of Murcia, Fernando López Miras, called on the Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez in a letter on Monday to “immediately convene” a crisis meeting at which measures to save the inland water, which has been plagued by ecological problems for years, should be decided.
After several incidents in recent years, the Mar Menor must be declared a disaster area, said López Miras.

Civil Guard officers have taken samples from various locations in the Mar Menor for further analysis. The cause of death of the fish is currently unknown © Edu Botella / EUROPA PRESS / dpa

Almost two years ago, for example, around three tons of dead lagoon inhabitantsmainly small fish and crabs – were washed up. The Mar Menor was once considered a natural and tourist paradise – today you can usually only see a “green soup” that gives off a rotten stench.

The culprit is so-called eutrophication – a harmful enrichment of nutrients in the water caused by human activities.
This leads to a strong increase in algae and bacteria, which deprive other plant species, fish and other animals and small organisms of their livelihood.
High temperatures accelerate eutrophication.
A few days ago, a heat wave had brought temperatures in all of Spain Murcia of well over 40 degrees.

The conservative regional government blames the weather and the left-wing central government, which gives too little support.

Environmentalists, however, pillory the regional government. They do nothing against the intensive agriculture in the immediate vicinity of the lagoon, which is the main culprit for the problems.
Especially when it rains heavily, fresh water and a lot of fertilizer-containing mud get into the lagoon.

https://www.geo.de/natur/oekologie/riesiges-fischsterben-in-europas-groesster-salzwasser-lagune–30678376.html

And I mean…So … a foreseeable disaster..

Fertilizer also massively promotes the growth of algae and it is common knowledge that agriculture also increases the nitrate content in the groundwater considerably.

Contaminate the soil, poison the groundwater, damage the climate and marine life, torture the cattle and even collect subsidies for them.
This is how agriculture works everywhere, not just in Spain.
With devastating ecological disasters

So it’s no wonder that the Mar Menor looks like green soup, suffocate fish and marine life.
But otherwise, the subsidies for the bullfights continue despite tight budgets due to Corona, and money is being put in the sand for the cruelest spectacle in Spain, instead of investing effective measures against this ecological catastrophe.

Paul Watson said that “when the oceans die, we die too”.
We have to act while it is still possible.
Otherwise, a terrible disaster threatens and the survivors will hate us all for it.

My best regards to all, Venus

Afghanistan – NOWZAD (Pen Farthing) Latest News 26/8/21. Plane leaving Luton (London UK) to evacuate loads of rescue animals and their staff.

Afghanistan – NOWZAD (Pen Farthing) Latest News 26/8/21.

Ex UK Royal Marine Commando Pen With stray Afghan rescued dog.

Afghanistan: Plane leaving Luton (London UK) to evacuate rescue animals and staff

A plane is expected to leave Luton Airport later to evacuate staff and animals from a charity in Afghanistan.

The campaign to get Nowzad sanctuary founder Paul “Pen” Farthing along with animals and staff out of Kabul has become known as Operation Ark.

The privately funded plane is due to land on Friday but Mr Farthing said he was not being allowed into the airport.

There had been criticism about prioritising animals over people, but approval was given for the flight.

Royal Marine veteran Mr Farthing, who is from Essex, founded the Nowzad animal shelter, rescuing dogs, cats and donkeys after serving in Afghanistan in the mid-2000s.

He has said he would not leave the country without his staff or animals.

It is understood Mr Farthing has about 68 staff and 150 cats and dogs as well as other people described as “vulnerable”.

Read it all and see photos at:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-58340272

More reading from ‘The Guardian’ (London).

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/26/uk-defence-secretary-complains-about-pleas-to-rescue-pets-from-kabul

Regards Mark

USA: New MT wolf hunting season will allow baiting and night hunting.

New MT wolf hunting season will allow baiting and night hunting

HELENA — Wolf hunting will look significantly different in Montana this year, with Fish and Wildlife Commission approving new quota and hunting methods for the predators at their Friday meeting.

In a split 3-2 decision, for the upcoming hunting season, a statewide quota of 450 wolves was approved, almost 40 percent of the estimated population according to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) data presented Friday. There were also individual harvest quotas set for each region that will allow FWP to close hunting should there be too many harvested at a time.

When the state’s or a regional quota is reached, the commission will convene to discuss further options during the season including increasing the number of wolves harvested.

Hunters are able to possess 10 wolf licenses and trappers are allowed a bag limit of 10 wolves. Each wolf harvested must be reported to the state within 24-hours.

The commission approved the neck-snare trapping of wolves and instructed FWP to establish education to inform hunters about good practices and how to avoid conflict with non-target animals such as dogs. If a non-target animal like a lynx or grizzly is snared, the commission will also meet to discuss potential immediate changes during the season.

The commission also approved controversial bait hunting and night hunting on private land of wolves.

Opposing Commissioners KC Walsh and Pat Byorth specifically objected to that aspect of the new rules, noting the ethics of what constituted “fair chase.” Baiting is not allowed for any other animals legally hunted in the state.

“It gives permission to behavior that we’ve been fighting and our game wardens fight on a daily basis, and now we’re giving permission all out of a desire to kill more wolves,” said Byorth. “We could kill more wolves with snares or public land- or private land I’d prefer. But there’s no reason to night hunt. There’s no reason to use bait.”

Vice-Chair Tabor said baiting, night hunting, and methods like snares are necessary to have better success for hunting the animals.

“These are tools. They’re not tools for everybody, but they allow for more opportunity for hunters to give them in essence better odds to be successful because they are an incredibly difficult animal to hunt,” responded Tabor.

During this year’s legislative session, lawmakers passed three bills revising laws on harvesting wolves. Senate Bill 314, sponsored by Sen. Bob Brown, R-Thompson Falls, specifically tasked the commission with reducing Montana’s wolf population to “a sustainable level.” It authorized them to consider increasing the number of wolves someone can take with a single license, allowing the use of bait while hunting and trapping wolves, and permitting hunting wolves at night on private lands.

House Bill 224 and 225 were both sponsored by Rep. Paul Fielder, R-Thompson Falls. HB 224 required the commission to allow the use of snares for wolf trapping, and HB 225 said they could extend the wolf trapping season.

The commission received more than 25,000 public comments on the matter, with the majority coming from out of state. Of the 19,000 letters received, about 1,000 originated from addresses within Montana, which FWP says were about evenly split between support for increased harvest and opposition to any taking of wolves.

Opponents raised several issues on Friday at the meeting, specifically that the new rules were politically based rather than scientific, ecosystems largely depending on wolves suffering and believing snares were inhumane.

Proponents that spoke said snares and baiting were necessary due to the rising number of wolves in the state.

The Associated Press reported Friday the Biden administration said they’re sticking by the decision under former President Donald Trump to lift protections for gray wolves across most of the United States. However, they did have concerns about overly aggressive hunter practices being proposed in states like Montana and worry it may lead to the animal needing protection once again.

New MT wolf hunting season will allow baiting and night hunting (ktvh.com)

Regards Mark

YouTube, Facebook and TikTok ‘earning millions’ from horrific animal-cruelty videos.

<img src="https://static.independent.co.uk/2021/08/25/13/rec0ojMtZ3oDRUiFc.png?width=982&height=726&auto=webp&quality=75&quot; alt="<p>A dog is crushed by a python in a staged ‘rescue’

A dog is crushed by a python in a staged ‘rescue’
(YouTube/SMACC)

YouTube, Facebook and TikTok ‘earning millions’ from horrific animal-cruelty videos

‘These corporations have the power to remove these vile videos, and it’s reprehensible that they haven’t,’ says charity boss

Thousands of animals globally are tortured, maimed and subjected to prolonged suffering for grisly videos that earn money for the world’s biggest social media platforms, YouTubeFacebook and TikTok, according to a year-long investigation.

The horrors include baby monkeys being buried alive or tormented; kittens being stepped on or set alight; people eating live animals and puppies and ducks being crushed to death by snakes.

In videos logged over just three months last year, it’s estimated that YouTube earned up to $12m (£8.8m) from the sharing of animal cruelty content, and the creators themselves earned nearly $15m (£11m).

The stream of videos depicting cruelty “on a monumental scale” – seen by billions of viewers – has prompted calls for social-media bosses to shut down rogue accounts and take responsibility for their content.

Between July last year and this month, a coalition of animal-welfare organisations working in Asia documented 5,480 links to videos containing animal cruelty on YouTube, Facebook and TikTok, posted as entertainment, but also earning money from hits and shares.

The investigators said these videos alone had had about 5.3 billion views, highlighting the scale of the problem.

Analysis of the data showed that producers of the videos can become almost “celebrity-like”, with some channels gathering millions of followers, according to the Asia For Animals Coalition.

Instagram has previously been condemned for allowing videos and images of animal cruelty – some of them violent – on its website, masquerading as entertainment.

Indonesia, the US, Australia, Cambodia, South Africa and South Korea featured highly as countries where cruelty content was made, the new study found.

The UK was the 14th-highest country or region for creation of cruelty content – which was mostly hunting-related but also the deliberate baiting of birds and squirrels for shooting – but was the third-highest country for cruelty content being uploaded.

A video from Thailand last year featured a chimp dressed up spraying disinfectant; another showed a puppy being crushed by a python so the filmmakers could stage a rescue, and a third recorded a dog being set on a live kitten – all on YouTube.

The report authors write: “We documented shocking footage of individual wild animals kept as pets and repeatedly abused on camera. Kittens and other young animals were set alight as the filmmakers laughed.

“Live burials, partial drownings, beatings and psychological torment were also documented.”

YouTube had the most cruelty videos, the investigators said, but Facebook has allowed encrypted groups and pages where unacceptable content can be shared undetected. On Facebook and YouTube, most cases were “obvious and intentional”, the report said.

Birds, dogs and cats are most commonly abused, but some species used are classed as threatened, including pangolins, bears, gibbons, pythons and macaque monkeys.

Adverts are embedded in cruelty content, so companies and organisations were unwittingly profiting, including several animal-welfare and conservation groups – some of which have since taken action, the report notes.

Alan Knight, chief executive of International Animal Rescue, said: “It is inexcusable for social media companies to turn a blind eye to the sickening scenes of animal abuse posted on their platforms. It is their moral responsibility to crack down on content showing animals forced to suffer for entertainment and financial gain.

“There’s no doubt these media corporations have the power to remove these vile videos, and it’s reprehensible that they haven’t done so already.

“They feed the basest instincts of a depraved minority and must be denied a platform and an audience to stamp them out.”

The coalition is calling on YouTube, Facebook, TikTok and other social media platforms to work with experts to develop “robust” monitoring systems to identify and remove cruel content without relying on viewers reporting it.

The organisations say that even trying to talk to bosses at the online platforms is difficult. Adam Parascandola, of Humane Society International, described the content as “deeply disturbing but largely overlooked”, saying: “The devastating data revealed by this only scratches the surface in exposing the shocking extent of cruelty promoted on social media.

“Now more than ever, it’s time for social media platforms to stop profiting from animal suffering and instead take action to end this devastating cruelty for clicks.”

In the past, the social-media channels have insisted they do not allow cruelty to be shown, and remove content breaching their guidelines.

But the report authors say they have seen videos remaining live despite being reported multiple times, or channels that were shut down starting up again under a different guise.

Nick Stewart, of World Animal Protection, said: “Exploitation of wildlife is happening on a monumental scale, impacting the welfare of billions of individual animals. We must call out companies that are complicit in this exploitation and urge them to take responsibility for a solution.”

A TikTok spokesperson said: “We cannot comment on the specifics as we have not seen the specific cases. However, as a general principle, our community guidelines make clear that we do not tolerate animal cruelty on our platform, and we take action when people violate these rules – up to and including permanently banning them from the platform. We use a combination of technology and human moderation to identify and remove content that breaches our community guidelines.”

Those guidelines ban “animal cruelty and gore”, as well as “dismembered, mutilated, charred or burned animal remains” and animal slaughter.

The Independent also asked Google, which owns YouTube and Facebook, to comment, but did not receive a response.

YouTube, Facebook and TikTok ‘earning millions’ from horrific animal-cruelty videos | The Independent

Regards Mark

To all pet owners: Sport only for two!

Is that familiar to you?
A cat simply cannot part with its favorite human and climbs into its pants while exercising its abdominal muscles.
“Whenever I try to do some serious exercise at home, my cat comes out and distracts me.
I just never manage to do something, ”complained cat owner Max Wu.

Yes! it sounds very familiar to me.
One of my cats, Blanquita, didn’t just take part in sports sessions that I did at home during the Corona.
I can’t even be alone in the bathroom! she’s always with me.
And I wish it stayed that way until our last day.
Mine or hers

Best regards to all, Venus