Day: November 3, 2021

European hamsters get support from the European Court of Justice

October 29, 2021

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has further strengthened the protection of the habitat of the European hamsters, which are threatened with extinction

This emerges from a judgment of the ECJ published on Thursday (case C-357/20).

Accordingly, the term “breeding site” includes all areas that are necessary for the successful reproduction of an animal species – including the area surrounding the breeding site.
In the case of the threatened European hamster, a different interpretation of the term could mean that the areas required for the reproduction and the birth of the young animals would not be protected, the ECJ found.

The background to the judgment is a request from the Vienna Administrative Court.
It is about the interpretation of an EU species protection directive. Specifically, it is about construction work in Austria for which a construction road was laid.
Not only was there no permit for this, they also destroyed entrances to hamster burrows.

As a result, an administrative authority imposed a fine on the manager of the company commissioned with the construction.
The latter then lodged a complaint with the administrative court.

European hamster on the red list since 2020

In an earlier judgment on the case, the ECJ had already ruled that resting and breeding sites for field hamsters may not be destroyed even if the animals no longer use them, but may return there.

The European hamster has been on the Red List as critically endangered since 2020 and could not survive for the next 30 years.
Environmentalists see the main reason for the intensive agriculture, which takes the cute animals away from their habitat.

In their new ruling, the judges have also clarified the differences between “damage” and “destruction” of a breeding site or resting place.

Accordingly, it denotes the gradual reduction in ecological functionality or its complete loss – regardless of whether this is done on purpose.

And I mean…It is estimated that the European hamster population has declined by 99 percent since the 1950s.

Not only modern agriculture with the use of chemicals and powerful technology is a threat to the European hamster, but also the land consumption by humans.

In the industrialized country of Germany, around 60 hectares are sealed every day, i.e. more than 80 football fields are built with asphalt or buildings. This area is lost to nature.
And also the habitat of many animals.

The European hamster is dependent on the agricultural landscape. There he finds steppe-like habitats in which he digs his burrows and finds rich food.
But because modern agriculture brings in the harvest earlier and almost completely, the European hamster not only lacks cover and thus protection from enemies, but above all sufficient food for wintering.
If they fail to gather enough food, they will not survive the winter.

Now the ECJ has finally strengthened the right of endangered animals to their habitat: not only their burrows should be protected, but the entire environment.

This is really good news and we are very happy.

My best regards to all, Venus

Escobar’s “cocaine hippos” have legal personhood and are not allowed to be shot

Once upon a time, infamous drug cartel leader Pablo Escobar decided to use a portion of his obscene wealth to establish his own private zoo at his home in Colombia.

What began as four hippos — dubbed “cocaine hippos” due to their association with Escobar — over the past almost forty years has grown into a population of 100 hippos living in Colombia’s Magdalena River.

They wound up there through no fault of their own and are just making a home for themselves. But now, the Colombian government wants to kill them all off.
We can’t let that happen!

Luckily, these hippos aren’t without defenders.
The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) is suing the government of Colombia to stop these killings, and the case is ongoing in court.
But already, the case has yielded an amazing new result.

The U.S. courts became involved in a small portion of the lawsuit — and for the first time, have now legally declared animals as persons under U.S. law.
In this particular instance, that includes the hippos!

Legal personhood for the hippos is a huge deal, because it means they (and maybe in the future, other animals) can have lawyers represent their interests, and to have matters concerning their health and wellbeing heard in court.

Legal personhood is a hugely important tool for protecting animals’ rights and preventing cruelty.
Right now, it’s being used to help these descendants of Escobar’s cocaine hippos.

In the future, it could potentially help neglected and abused animals at roadside zoos, or whales at SeaWorld.

In Colombia, animals — including these hippos — actually already have legal standing, meaning they can have lawyers and bring lawsuits to ensure their interests are protected.

According to Newsweek, in July, Colombian attorney Luis Domingo Gómez Maldonado filed a lawsuit on behalf of the animals to prevent them from being slaughtered, claiming that sterilisation was a preferable alternative.
But having it in the U.S. now too gives them one more leg up in this battle for their lives.

Now that the U.S. and Colombia are both in agreement that hippos have legal personhood, it’s time for the Colombian government to also abandon its horrible plan to kill off these hippos who did nothing wrong.

If the hippos can’t live where they’ve been existing in the Magdalena River, that’s fine — but there are other alternatives besides mass slaughter.

Sign the petition to demand protections for these 100 innocent hippos!

And I mean…Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, the most famous drug dealer on earth was shot dead in 1993.

A man with more cash than Bezos, Pablo amassed a huge collection of exotic animals for his private zoo in the Medellin.
Illegally smuggled into the country, the media quickly nicknamed them ‘Cocaine Hippos’.

The ‘cocaine hippos’ are the descendants of animals Escobar illegally imported to his Colombian ranch in the 1980s when he reigned over the country’s drug trade.

After his death most animals were relocated with the exception of four hippos.

Although its generally believed they escaped, rumours were rampant they were intentionally set free. Their numbers greatly increased in the wild, today it’s estimated over one hundred hippos are swimming in the waterways, and are believed to be the biggest herd outside Africa

Some autorities might approve extreme measures such as culling the animals. They say the hippos pose an immediate threat to the local ecology and humans.

Other experts believe they are “restoring ecological services” that have been lost for thousands of years owing to “human-driven extinctions.”

And we say: They are like the village pets.
People must be more afraid of the snakes than the hippos.

In addition: Rescuing them is a matter of principle, and really part of a larger movement that works to ensure that the interests of animals are represented in court.

We are not asking for a new law to be passed. We only demand that animals have the opportunity to enforce the rights already granted to them.

Therefore-sign and share the Petition

My best regards to all, Venus

EU: EU disgraced after report found bloc ‘offshores environment damage’.

EU disgraced after report found bloc ‘offshores environment damage’

World leaders have mostly left Glasgow’s COP26 climate summit after striking a range of agreements on reducing carbon emissions and other elements of human-induced climate change. More than 100 countries promised to end and reverse deforestation by 2030, while a number of leaders joined an initiative led by the US and EU to cut emissions of methane by at least 30 percent by 2030. China, Russia and India were not among the names on the list.

India did, however, pledge to reach net zero emissions by 2070 – ending its position as one of the last major economies in the world to hold out on such a commitment.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced a €1billion (£846million) contribution to the Global Forests Finance Pledge.

EU news: The bloc's Green Deal was torn apart by scientists
© GETTY EU news: The bloc’s Green Deal was torn apart by scientists

The five-year support package looks to help partner countries protect, restore and sustainably manage forests worldwide and deliver on the 2015 Paris Agreement.

Last year, the EU threw its weight behind the climate debate after announcing its ambitious Green Deal which was at the heart of its coronavirus pandemic recovery plan, and doubled up as a step towards federalism.

While the announced figure to help the cause was put at €750bn (£637bn), the European Commission said the real figure would be almost €2trillion (£1.7tn) after spending from future budgets was added in.

Many hailed the plans as outlining what the future looked like, with Ms von der Leyen declaring: “This is Europe’s moment.”

Yet, others were less convinced.

Richard Fuchs, Calum Brown and Mark Rounsevell, three scientists writing in a report for the science journal Nature, claimed that: “Europe’s Green Deal offshores environmental damage to other nations.”

They focused on the element of the deal which saw millions of tonnes of crops and meat imported into the bloc each year.

This is part of the bloc’s efforts to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, setting targets to reduce carbon emissions and enhance forests, farming, green transport, recycling and renewable energy – all of which Ms von der Leyen said will help the EU show “the rest of the world how to be sustainable and competitive”.

But, the authors said: “Problems lurk behind the rhetoric.”

The EU relies heavily on agricultural imports, only China imports more, with the EU in 2019 buying one-fifth of the crops and one percent of the meat and dairy products consumed within its borders.

his allows Europeans to farm less intensively, but “the imports come from countries with environmental laws that are less strict than those in Europe. And EU trade agreements do not require imports to be produced sustainably.”

The October 2020 paper notes the various deals the EU has signed in the past two years with countries and trade blocs around the world, which have covered nearly half of its crop imports.

The authors write: “The net result? EU member states are outsourcing environmental damage to other countries, while taking the credit for green policies at home.

“Although the EU acknowledges that some new legislation will be required around trade, in the short term, nothing will change under the Green Deal.”

Between 1990 and 2014, European forests expanded by nine percent, an area roughly equivalent to the size of Greece, some 13 million hectares (Mha).

Elsewhere around the world, however, some 11 Mha was deforested to grow crops that were consumed within the EU.

And, three-quarters of this deforestation was linked to oilseed production in Brazil and Indonesia.

These are regions of the planet that hold unparalleled biodiversity and are home to some of the world’s largest carbon sinks – crucial for mitigating climate change.

The paper goes on to note the various transformations that will take place within European agriculture under the deal: “A ‘farm to fork’ initiative aims to reduce fertiliser use in Europe by 20 percent and pesticides by 50 percent, with one-quarter of land to be farmed organically by 2030.

Continued on next page.

Eating Meat is Cultural Narcissism.

With thanks to Stacey at Our Compass as always.

Stacey | Our Compass (

Regards Mark

Eating Meat is Cultural Narcissism

by Stacey

Dominion Movement


By Robin Schaper

In a healthy environment, people would be thrilled to find out that we can end animal exploitation and improve our health and the environment at the same time. We would all be working together to close slaughterhouses immediately. So, why do people side with the animal abusers and gaslight anyone who doesn’t? Because eating and using animal products is a form of cultural narcissism.

We’re becoming increasingly aware of narcissism, but few of us know that it doesn’t only apply to individuals. Collective and cultural narcissism also exist. The problem is, however, that this can be hard to see when it’s part of our own culture. So, I’m going to unpack exactly how the meat industry and other animal industries engage in collective narcissism, and how society’s support for these industries is a form of cultural narcissism.

If you eat or use animal products yourself, then please read this with an open mind. My goal is not to call you a narcissist, but to arm you with information, so we can end this form of cultural narcissism together.


Two thirds of US households have at least one cat, dog, or other companion animal. We don’t expect these animals to do anything for us. They’re valued purely for their company. Often, they’re considered part of the family, and we recognize that they each have their own unique personality and love them for it.

In the animal industries, however, the exact opposite happens. One of the core traits of narcissism, treating others like objects, is expressed to the fullest extent here. The industries don’t bring animals into this world to love them, but to kill them and sell their bodies. They literally turn living beings, who are just as sentient as cats and dogs, into products. The animals’ desire to stay alive isn’t even factored into the decision, only how much they weigh when they’re killed.

Entitlement and grandiosity

Entitlement is about taking what isn’t ours. And if there’s one thing that isn’t ours, it’s someone else’s life. Taking a life is the most extreme form of entitlement. Even if it was an “us or them” situation, the idea that animals should die for us would still be entitled, but it would be understandable. However, that’s not even remotely the case. To quote the largest organization of nutrition experts in the US:

“It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that appropriately planned vegan diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits for the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. These diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, older adulthood, and for athletes.”

So, not only are all animal products unnecessary, cutting them out of our diet can actually benefit our health. And the average person has access to a wide variety of plant-based food. We even have plant-based products that look and taste like animal products. So, the industries aren’t killing trillions of animals for us out of any kind of necessity.

The fact that, even under these circumstances, they feel entitled to kill as many animals as they want so we can eat as many animals as we want can only be described as grandiosity.

Continued on next page.

COP26: Changing food systems and how we treat animals is a major opportunity for climate change mitigation.

COP26: Changing food systems and how we treat animals is a major opportunity for climate change mitigation

31 October 2021


For too long, animal protection has been absent from the conversation around the climate emergency. However, animals and animal-related sectors play a significant role in ensuring a transition towards climate-resilient societies.

Today marks the start of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, where parties and world leaders will come together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

One of the main themes of this year’s COP is nature-based solutions to the twin crisis of climate change and biodiversity loss. This provides an important opportunity to raise the profile of animal protection issues in the climate agenda.

Livestock farming represents a significant share of the planet’s emissions that cannot be ignored. The recent report on global warming from IPCC is clear: we have no time to lose in cutting methane emissions. Reducing livestock numbers could contribute significantly to achieving the Paris Agreement targets. Failing to reduce livestock numbers will put most of the UN SDGs out of reach.

Eurogroup for Animals’ contribution

To inform COP26 attendees about the environmental issues associated with animal-related sectors, as well as how improved animal welfare and transformed food systems can help build back better, Eurogroup for Animals have created a leaflet entitled “Protecting Animals to Protect the Planet”.

Download the leaflet here:


Protecting Animals to Protect the Planet1.2 MB

Our Trade & Animal Welfare Programme Leader Stephanie Ghislain will be speaking at the conference in November. Stay tuned for further details. 

Regards Mark

Greece: Religious slaughter: A spectacular win for animals in Greece.

Religious slaughter: A spectacular win for animals in Greece

29 October 2021

Hellenic Animal Welfare Federation

The Hellenic Council of State (Supreme Administrative Court of Greece) annulled a 2017 ministerial decision which, in the context of religious slaughter, allowed the slaughter of animals without prior stunning. The Court ruled that the Greek state omitted to aim for a balance between its obligation to protect animals and that to respect religious freedom.

The Court rejected the claims of the Greek State that it was bound by Regulation (EC)1099/2009 to allow slaughter without prior stunning, accepting instead the arguments put forward by Animal Protection associations and meanwhile confirmed by the European Court of Justice.

This confirms that the Regulation itself does not make the compromise between animal welfare and freedom of religion, but merely sets the framework for the necessary compromise between the two principles, providing member states with the possibility to regulate religious slaughter and maintain national rules or adopt new rules to ensure wider protection of animals, taking into account the evolution of values and perceptions in their society.

Regards Mark

UK-Game shoot destroyed, 100 partridges freed

Received anonymously and filed under Communiqués in


All game keepers are scum bags, the “game” shooting industry is trash and the way it decimates the wild and the environment all over the country is disgusting and needs to stop.

When we found out these pieces of shit in Shropshire were trapping and killing birds of prey we had to act.
We took a trip to the shooting estate near Chelmarsh and found the whole place covered in traps – larsens, fenn traps and bird of prey traps – which we destroyed.

The pheasant pens became another target for our rage and we completely dismantled them.
We raided their sheds and stole disgusting family photographs of the murderers, proudly displaying their past trophies, their guns and dead birds, smiley happy family days out killing.

gamekeeper with bag of the day braces of pheasants English rural scene

There were three partridge release pens, still full of birds waiting to be shot.
We returned in the night and released over 100 captive birds from those pens, then smashed the fuck out of them.
Those partridges will now be free and not just a flying target for sick murdering fucks to shoot.

With this action we send a clear message to this game keeper and game keepers all over – you fuck with birds of prey, we fuck with you.

Fuck with the wild and expect retribution.

And I mean…In the United Kingdom, around 50 million pheasants are ‘released into the wild’ after they have been reared in factory farms so that they can then be shot with the help of drivers and dogs while hunting.

A cursory glance at Wikipedia will tell any prospective applicant that a gamekeeper is “a person who manages an area of countryside to make sure there is enough game for shooting and stalking” and any online search will turn up pages of information on how that’s achieved.

Gamekeepers are a construct of shooting industrie. Without the shooting industry there would be no ‘need’ to industrialise the killing of native wildlife and no ‘need’ for gamekeepers.

Why they’re doing it for, we know that already.
They kill and they are paid to do it.

The point is that vast numbers of animals are being killed to protect the profits of the shooting industry.

The most important point is that our governments seem complicit in breaking the country’s laws on wildlife protection by issuing licences on behalf of the shooting industry, licences that cost nothing and don’t even have to be applied for.
And that the mass destruction of native wildlife has been normalised by the shooting industry and packaged as ‘countryside management’.
And because governments themselves are made up of hunting lobbyists or even passionate hunters, it makes a lot of sense not to make the craft of this criminal industry so easy.

Thanks to those who see it that way and act accordingly ❤️

My best regards to all, Venus