Robber fly - Nature photographer Thomas Shahan specializes in amazing portraits of tiny insects. It isn't easy. Shahan says that this Robber Fly (Holcocephala fusca), for instance, is "skittish" and doesn't like its picture taken.

Eye-popping bug photos

Nature by Numbers (Video)

"The Greater Akashic System" – July 15, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Subjects: Lightworkers, Intent, To meet God, Past lives, Universe/Galaxy, Earth, Pleiadians, Souls Reincarnate, Invention: Measure Quantum state in 3D, Recalibrates, Multi-Dimensional/Divine, Akashic System to change to new system, Before religion changed the system, DNA, Old system react to Karma, New system react to intent now for next life, Animals (around humans) reincarnate again, This Animal want to come back to the same human, Akashic Inheritance, Reincarnate as Family, Other Planets, Global Unity … etc.)

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle
American zoologist played by Sigourney Weaver in the film Gorillas in the Mist would have been 82 on Thursday (16 January 2014)

Monday, April 28, 2014

Joko Widodo Lays Out Agricultural Manifesto for Indonesia

Jakarta Globe, Deti Mega Purnamasari & Markus Junianto Sihaloho, Apr 27, 2014

A Balinese farmer threshes rice in Denpasar. (EPA Photo/Made Nahi)

Jakarta. Over a month after officially entering the presidential race, Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo, nominated as presidential candidate by the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle, or PDI-P, has begun introducing his vision and mission to the voters.

Visiting local farmers at the Tanjungrasa village in Bogor district’s Cariu subdistrict, Joko on Sunday addressed six points in the field of agriculture and food security that would be his focus should he be elected president in the election set to take place on July 9.

Productive agricultural lands, Joko said, should not be converted into other use, such as residential or industrial areas, and should instead be preserved. Additionally, he said farmers would have to be assisted in making sure that even the smallest plots of lands were used productively and that farmers were educated not to use chemically engineered seeds or pesticides.

Joko also emphasized the need to build better infrastructure for farmers, the need to monitor the quality of water in the fields, as well as improved monetary benefits for farmers and better access to capital and financial support.

“I asked farmers, how many tons [of rice] can be produced from one hectare [of land]? Apparently it was six tons, because farmers here are using a good mix,” Joko said during his visit on Sunday.

According to him, the average amount of rice produced on Indonesian farms was between four to five tons for each hectare of land, while the population grew by three million each year.

“Like it or not, we need to prepare more food for this growth. Additionally, in the past five years there has been a significant increase in food imports,” he said, citing hikes in the imports of several staple food items such as rice, corn, soy, flour, sugar, salt, beef, onions and fruits.

“We import fish. We are a maritime nation but our fish imports have spiked,” Joko said “These are issues that need to be sorted out. These things are the reason why inflation on certain basic commodities easily occurs for a long period of time and repeatedly.”

Joko was adamant that the issue would see major risks unfurl in the next five to 10 years should the government fail to take strict and extreme policies. “Without that, we are risking our sovereignty and food security,” he said.

As such, Joko said it was important to ensure the production sector was improved so as to limit imports.

“We have to concentrate the production. Imports have to be cut and eventually eliminated. With some effort and hard work, I think we can achieve this within four or five years,” he said.

A change of mentality

Aside from his vision for the Indonesian agricultural sector, Joko on Sunday also introduced what he called a “mental revolution,” which he cited as one of the main requirements needed to see positive changes in Indonesia in the future.

“A mental revolution, because we have to change ourselves, so that this nation can reach its potential, because we are a big nation. Let’s change our mentality from the negative to the positive,” Joko said on Sunday, emphasizing that the issue would be one of his biggest focuses if elected president and would cover areas such as education, health and agriculture.

“We cannot be stuck in negative thoughts and instead should be positive, we have to be sure that we can do this well and in the right way,” Joko said.

A member of Joko’s national secretariat team, Eva Kusuma Sundari, said that with the program, Joko would become an icon of transformative leadership bringing new values to be practiced by government.

“[Joko is] a leader who seeks to promote a mental revolution for the sake of transforming Indonesia into becoming a sovereign, independent nation, the embodiment of a 21st-century Trisakti [ideology],” Eva said in Jakarta on Sunday, referring leadership principles espoused by Sukarno.

A mental revolution, she said, was part of an effort to build a fair and prosperous society that adheres to the Pancasila state ideology. “A nation that never leaves behind nation and character building projects,” Eva explained.

She emphasized that Joko had started this mission in Jakarta, with people becoming more aware of their responsibility not to litter in the areas surrounding the Angke river in West Jakarta following the city administration’s revitalization program.

“The Indonesian culture of working together has to be developed and strengthened for it to become the base of our [development],” Eva said, adding that education played a pivotal role in ensuring the strengthening of this culture among Indonesians. “Of course people and human resources are the engine of any public transformation projects and, as such, the spirit of education has to be made the center of character-building efforts.”

PDI-P central executive board chairman Maruar Sirait said Joko was ready to build up the country by focusing on three indicators: Indonesia’s political sovereignty, economic independence and a positive image in the cultural sector.

“It is important for us to move towards a mental revolution, as explained by Joko, because our nation is yet to unite mentally, but it will. We have to be confident with our capabilities,” he said.

Despite having a vast supply of natural resources, such as marine, mineral and energy resources, Indonesia remains hampered by bigger issues such as uneven economic growth, poor law enforcement as well as other leadership and mental issues, he said.

“That is why the mental revolution explained by Joko is very relevant,” Maruar said, adding that the program would inspire optimism throughout the nation’s stakeholders.

Furthermore, Maruar also explained that Indonesia’s diversity has yet to be well understood by the public and that the concept of pluralism remained in tatters as a result of years of colonialism and imperialism by the Dutch, who at the time used divisive rule to prevent the people from uniting against them.

“The mental revolution will have to nurture a mentality of unity, Indonesians have to come together in building a better Indonesia,” he said.

“[It’s called] a mental revolution because we have to change ourselves, so that this nation would have hope. Because we are a great nation.”

Search for a running mate

Maruar also said on Sunday that the mental revolution concept also proved PDI-P chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri had made the right decision by appointing Joko as the party’s candidate and that she would also elect the right running mate for Joko.

“We are sure Mega will elect the right vice presidential candidate for Joko, one who will not merely be a spare tire,” Maruar said. “Let the decision be based on dialectics and public discussions. They [the public] have proved receptive towards the PDI-P’s presidential candidate, and now we hope they will react in the same way towards the PDI-P’s [appointment of a] vice presidential candidate.”

He added the party wanted to make sure any vice president would work with the president in following through party policies and was not burdened with past misdeeds.

Related Article:


Claims 100 stray dogs buried alive in China probed

Yahoo – AFP, 27 April 2014

(Photo by Dimitar Dilkof/AFP)

Claims that about 100 stray dogs were buried alive in northern China are being investigated, an official said Sunday, the latest apparent case of animal cruelty to shock the nation.

Allegations that a pit pictured online Wednesday containing scores of stray dogs had been filled in by local government officials were made by a charity based in Inner Mongolia.

The Yinchuan Dawn Pets Home group investigated after a woman searching for her pet dog near a garbage dump in Alxa League, near China's border with Mongolia, told them that the animals were trapped on Wednesday.

When the charity visited the site the following day, they found that the pit had been filled in.

A charity volunteer told AFP that another visit was made on Friday, but by then it appeared that the dead dogs had been moved elsewhere, in what the group said was an attempt by local officials responsible for enforcing city laws -- called Chengguan in China -- to hide the grim burial.

"We hired an excavator and found in the place where the dogs were buried six dead dogs which were damaged by an excavator before we got there," the volunteer surnamed Fan told AFP.

"These dogs all had soil in their mouths and noses, which means before we arrived at the scene local Chengguan had already transferred the dogs' bodies to another secret place."

An official from the local Chengguan office denied the allegations and said an investigation had been launched.

"We are investigating if some stray dogs were buried alive," the official told AFP.
"I can ensure you we didn't do this kind of thing, and moreover, we are not in charge of stray dogs."

Internet outrage

Pictures of the dogs before the alleged burial were posted by the charity on Sina Weibo -- China's version of Twitter.

The images showed scores of animals in a dusty ditch about six feet (1.8 metres) deep. The original post was followed by subsequent updates detailing the burial claims.

The allegations against the Chengguan -- who have a reputation for brutality in China -- sparked a wave of fury, with some online comments being forwarded tens of thousands of times.

"(We) should put these officials into a pit, no better than a group of beasts," one netizen said in a Weibo post Sunday.

Pet ownership has ballooned across China, with more than 30 million households now keeping a cat or dog, according to research group Euromonitor.

China -- which has no laws against animal cruelty -- has also witnessed an increase in animal rights campaigning in recent years.

In May 2013, dozens of stray cats were slaughtered in a residential district in Beijing, with their fur almost completely plucked out, state news agency Xinhua reported.

Animal rights campaigners in Shanghai highlighted the case of a woman who was alleged to have killed hundreds of cats, the Global Times newspaper reported in 2012.

Official policy in many Chinese cities is that stray dogs are rounded up and found new homes, but activists say they are usually put down or sometimes sold on to restaurants for their meat.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Elephant tusk trafficking goes online in Fujian

Want China Times, Staff Reporter 2014-04-27

Chinese customs seize elephant tusks in Liaoning. (Photo/Xinhua)

The illicit ivory trafficking industry has moved online in China due to police crackdowns on brick-and-mortar trading, according to the Chinese-language Chongqing Youth News.

A reporter from the newspaper traveled to Baxia, a village in Fujian province and a place where redwood furniture sales serve as a front for an illicit online ivory business.

The elephant tusks businesses are a family business. The men who quit school learn to carve the ivory, while women learn to polish. The mother would be in charge of looking after the shop, along with other women who stay at home to take care of children.

The family business model reduces the risks of anyone selling secrets, or worse, selling the family to police authorities for a large compensation, said the report. Elephant tusk carving is closely related to redwood carpentry in Baxia, because both fields require high precision and use similar tools.

Shop owners said they only do business with clients they have known for a very long time, because the police are clamping down on the business.

A police raid on March 2 caught two suspects and seized almost a hundred elephant tusks. The elephant tusks products sold in Baxia mostly come from Africa, said the report.

The marketing of the products is done through social networking platforms, such as QQ, where dealers take photos showing the specifications of the products, such as weight, length and appearance. People who are interested contact the dealer.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Bustard act: Saudi prince accused of slaying 2,000 near-extinct birds while on safari in Pakistan

  • Fahd bin Sultan is said to have killed 1,977 houbara bustards in 21 days
  • He had been granted a permit to kill a certain number within a small area
  • But it is claimed he far exceeded his allowance and hunted in banned zone
  • Arab royals have long hunted houbara, considering its meat an aphrodisiac
  • Bird is covered by protection laws but Pakistan can grant special permits
  • Hunting sees global houbara population shrink by 30 per cent annually

Daily Mail, John Hall, 22 April 2014

Hunt: Fahd bin Sultan is said to have killed
1,977 houbara bustards in just 21 days while
on holiday
A Saudi prince has been accused of killing 2,000 birds that are on the verge of extinction while on a safari holiday in Pakistan earlier this year.

Prince Fahd bin Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud - who is commonly known as Fahd bin Sultan - is said to have killed 1,977 near-extinct houbara bustards while on a 21-day trip to Chagai in Pakistan's Balochistan province in January.

An additional 123 bustards - which are covered by laws to protect endangered species - were slaughtered by members of the prince's travelling party, bringing the total killed to 2,100.

Fahd bin Sultan, 63 -the governor of Saudi Arabia's Tabuk Province and the second eldest son of late Crown Prince Sultan - is accused of hunting illegally in protected areas, according to a report by Karachi-based Dawn News.

The website claims to have seen a document titled ‘Visit of Prince Fahd bin Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud regarding hunting of houbara bustard' which they say was prepared by Jaffar Baloch - a divisional officer in the local forest and wildlife department.

The report allegedly says the prince and his party hunted for 21 days - from Jan 11, 2014 to Jan 31 - and had been granted special permits by the Pakistani federal government which allow important visitors to bypass laws preventing the hunting of houbaras.

These permits still require the recipient to kill no more than 100 birds over a 10-day period however, and only allow them to do so in certain areas.

More...

It is not known if Fahd bin Sultan or any or his party will face punishments for violating the rules over how many birds they killed and for hunting with falcons outside the specified areas.

Houbaras are highly valued by Arab royals, who consider the meat to be an aphrodisiac.

For decades sheikhs have travelled to remote areas of Pakistan in time for the bird to make its winter migration from Central Asia. India banned the hunting of houbaras in early 1979.

At risk: Hunting in Pakistani sees the global houbara population shrink by
 between 20 and 30 per cent annually. Houbaras are highly valued by Arab royals,
who consider their meat to be an aphrodisiac

The ongoing hunting in Pakistan has seen global houbara numbers fall to around 110,000 - with that figure decreasing by between 20 and 30 per cent every year.

After a particularly aggressive hunting season last year, Pakistan introduced an interim ban on killing the birds.

The move proved popular with local environmental campaigners who have grown tired of Arab sheikhs flouting hunting laws, but the Pakistani government appears to have subsequently eased the restrictions, issuing at least 33 houbara hunting permits already this year.

One reason they are likely to have done so is because Arab royals bring a huge economic boost to the poor regions in which they hunt.

They are said to travel in a convoy of private jets while on safari, with some transport planes given over purely to falcons and hunting equipment.

The sheikhs also make large donations while travelling in Pakistan's poor rural areas - paying for new schools and mosques to be built, as well as funding the repair of rundown roads and airports.

Read more:
Arab royal hunts down 2,100 houbara bustards in three week safari

Related Article:


Spain's King Juan Carlos poses in front of a dead elephant
on a hunting trip in Botswana, Africa. Photograph: Target
Press/Barcroft Media



Beijing may soon punish wild animal eaters with jail time

Want China Times, Xinhua 2014-04-24

A giant panda at the Huanglong National Nature Reserve in Sichuan,
April 22. (Photo/CNS)

A draft interpretation of China's Criminal Law, tabled for reading on Monday, aims to clear up ambiguities by clearly defining eating endangered wild animals, or buying them for this or other purposes, as illegal.

The bill was submitted for first reading by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), China's top legislature, at its bimonthly session from Monday to Thursday.

Eating rare wild animals is not only bad social conduct but also a main reason why illegal hunting has not been stopped despite repeated crackdowns, said Lang Sheng, deputy head of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee, when elaborating on the bill to lawmakers.

Currently, 420 species of wild animals are considered rare or endangered by the Chinese government. They include giant pandas, golden monkeys, Asian black bears and pangolins.

According to the bill, anyone who eats the animals on this list or buys them for other purposes, will be considered to be breaking the Criminal Law and will face a jail term from below five years to more than 10 years.

While the current Criminal Law bans illegal hunting of any wild animals, it fails to clarify whether buying prey of illegal hunting breaks the law, and many buyers walk away unpunished.

"In fact, buyers are a major motivator of large-scale illegal hunting," Lang said.

To close the loophole, the bill regulates that knowingly buying any wild animals that are prey of illegal hunting is considered a form of fencing and will face a maximum three-year imprisonment.

Having one of the world's richest wildlife resources, China is home to around 6,500 vertebrate species, about 10% of the world's total. More than 470 terrestrial vertebrates are indigenous to China, including giant pandas, golden monkeys, South China tigers and Chinese alligators.

However, the survival of wildlife in the country faces serious challenges from illegal hunting, consumption of wild animal products and a worsening environment.

The bill is the tenth interpretative move to the Criminal Law by the top legislature since it took effect in 1997. The law has also been through nine amendments.

Three other issues were explained in the bill, concerning social insurance fraud, company registration fraud and organizations involved in violating personal rights.

Since the current law does not regulate social insurance fraud, offenders have faced different penalties. Some have been prosecuted and jailed and some have received administrative punishment, while the rest have walked free after returning what they gained illegally, according to Lang. It will need the top legislature's clarification to better fight the crimes, he added.

The bill puts defrauding social insurance through cheating, faked documents and other means in the offences of swindling public and private money or property. This means the offender will face a jail time from below three years to more than ten years.

The third entry in the bill is to update the Criminal Law in line with the latest amendment to the company law which was made last December.

The revised law removes the requirement on an ordinary company to actually deposit a set amount of money, out of its registered capital, to obtain a business license. Instead, shareholders of the company take responsibility of confirming the contributions.

The bill lifts criminal penalties on shareholders of these companies if they make a false capital contribution.

The current two provisions about capital contribution fraud will only be applied to a few sorts of companies like banks that are still required to deposit registered capital.

The bill also clarifies that if an organization is involved in violating personal and property rights of a citizen, the individuals in the organization, who mastermind and commit such crimes, should be held responsible.

Related Article:


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Czech deer still wary of iron curtain boundary

Areas where Czechoslovakia had three electrified fences now avoided by generation of deer who never encountered them

theguardian.com, Associated Press in Prague, Wednesday 23 April 2014

A reconstruction of Iron Curtain in the Sumava national park near Kvilda,
Czech Republic. Photograph: Petr David Josek/AP

Almost 25 years after the iron curtain came down, central European deer still balk at crossing areas where there used to be electrified fences, scientists have found.

A seven-year study in Sumava national park, in the Czech Republic, discovered that red deer were still wary of spots where the then Czechoslovakia had three parallel electrified fences patrolled by heavily armed guards.

Nearly 500 people were killed when they tried to escape the country across the frontier with Germany, and deer were killed too.

"It was fascinating to realise for the first time that anything like that is possible," said Pavel Sustr, a biologist who led the project. Scientists conducting research on German territory reached similar conclusions.

The average life expectancy for deer is 15 years and none living now would have encountered the barrier. "But the border still plays a role for them and separates the two populations," Sustr said.

He said the research showed the animals stuck to traditional life patterns, returning every year to the same places. "Fawns follow mothers for the first year of their life and learn from them where to go."

Wildlife officials recorded the movement of 300 Czech and German deer with GPS-equipped collars.

Professor Ludek Bartos, of the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague, who was not involved in the research, said: "I don't think it's a surprising result. These animals are really conservative."

Related Article:
Kryon Q&A

Question: Dear Kryon: I was wondering about the way I feel about whales and dolphins. I've had a feeling that I have to go to them sometime, but I don't know how or what I'm to do when I get there. Please help.

Question: Dear Kryon: I'm a Turkish/Islam woman of 57. I live in Ankara and work for the European Commission's project in Turkey. I've read almost all of the Kryon books twice, and I'm planning to read them once more. My question is about the whales. Why do they commit mass suicide? What is the reason for this very sad event? Is it a kind of protest against Human Beings?

Answer: Dear ones, we've channelled many times about the whales of this planet. In review, they're the living portions of an actual grid-system! They contain the "history of Earth" within their beings, and they're sacred for that reason. They coordinate and cooperate with the crystalline grid of your planet, which is currently being rewritten (see Kryon channelling on the Website: "What's Next?" December 8, 2002). Doesn't it strike you odd that these mammals are the only ones protected against hunting by more than 90 percent of the countries of Earth... even the places without oceans? Do you think that this is an accident or a coincidence? No. It's cellular information for all humanity to protect the whales and keep them safe. Dolphins are their cousins and support group, and they play a role in the whales' development. This is why you're so attracted to them.

Whales do not commit mass suicide. They have no consciousness to allow for this, and it has never happened. Instead, you see whales often beaching themselves and then being saved by Humans, only to re-beach themselves and die. This takes place mostly on the coastlines of your continents, and often on those areas of topography that "stick out," such as a peninsula or isthmus. Your Cape Cod is a good example in America, and is also a place where this has recently happened (up to 47 whales on a beach).

The reason is that whales, dolphins, amphibians, birds, and even insects all navigate to their breeding ground or migration areas each year via the magnetic grid of the planet! Each group follows the ley lines of magnetic influence, almost as if they had a built-in compass. In fact, they actually do!

The magnetic grid of this planet has changed so much, so quickly, as we told you it would in 1989, that there hasn't been time for the pods of whales to adjust with time to these changes. Instead, many simply follow the old magnetic lines of migration, only to find themselves on a beach instead of the open ocean, as the old magnetic direction used to take them. They're confused, and they simply line up and try again, just as they have for years. These things are temporary, and as tragic as you might see them, it's all part of "pruning" the system, and the calves will go around in the future, establishing new instinctive information for the new whales regarding the grid changes. This information has even now been validated this year (2003) by your scientists.

Persecuted for palm oil

Sutanta Aditya, a photographer who works with AFP, took these astonishing photos of a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan being treated at conservation centre in western Indonesia after the primate was found with air gun pellets embedded in his body. Aditya describes how he saw the creature being treated.
 
A staff member at the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme examines
 a 14-year-old male orangutan found with air gun pellets embedded in his body, in
 Sibolangit district, northern Sumatra island, April 16, 2014. (AFP Photo/Sutanta
Aditya)

AFP, Sutanta Aditya, April 22, 2014

MEDAN, Indonesia, April 22, 2014 — The orangutan had been sedated before health workers carried it on a stretcher to the operating table. It lay totally motionless, even when another photographer used a strong flash to take its picture.

The primate had already undergone surgery to remove a pellet from its right thigh, now health workers wanted to carry out a blood test, take a hair sample and conduct an X-ray to check for broken bones.

The vets had real trouble trying get the enormous and very drowsy orangutan upright for the X-ray. Four men, each holding on to one of its limbs, had to lift it off the table and get it to stand up.

Staff members X-ray the 14-year-old male orangutan found with air gun
metal pellets embedded in his body. (AFP Photo/Sutanta Aditya)

When they finally had the primate on its feet, they realised there was no one free to turn on the X-ray machine, so they had to call in someone else to help them.

After the tests were successfully concluded, the orangutan was taken to an enclosure at the centre.

He was treated at a centre run by the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme (SOCP) in North Sumatra province.

The organisation said the orangutan, named Angelo, is around 14 years old and was rescued from an isolated patch of forest in North Sumatra by the government conservation agency and another group, the Orangutan Information Centre.

A veterinary staff member checks the orangutan's teeth. (AFP Photo/
Sutanta Aditya)

The land surrounding the forest had been cleared, mainly to make way for palm oil plantations, a practise that is common across the island of Sumatra. The edible oil is used in numerous everyday goods, from biscuits to shampoo, but is blamed for rampant deforestation in Sumatra and other parts of the Indonesian archipelago.

The SOCP said if Angelo had not been rescued, he would not have survived in such an isolated patch of forest, and the pellets in his body showed that local villagers had already been shooting at him.

He will be released back into the wild once he has spent 30 days in quarantine and is deemed to be fit and well, the group said.

A baby male orangutan named Siboy at the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation
 Programme, which has helped over 280 orangutans rescued from palm oil plantations,
 poachers and pet owners. Over 200 have been reintroduced to the wild. (AFP Photo/
Sutanta Aditya)

This photograph taken on February 24, 2014 during an aerial survey mission
 by Greenpeace at East Kotawaringin district in Central Kalimantan province on
 Indonesia's Borneo Island, shows trees cleared for palm oil. 
(AFP Photo/
Bay Ismoyo)

Aditya is based based in Medan, the capital of North Sumatra province, and has been working with AFP for more than five years.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

More food firms, hotel group shift to one star factory farm pork

DutchNews.nl, Tuesday 22 April 2014

(NOS/ANP)
The Subway sandwiches group, salad maker Johma and hotel group NH are the latest firms to switch to one star factory pork, animal rights group Wakker Dier said on Tuesday.

Pigs kept on a one star factory farm have 25% more room to move than no star pigs and more 'toys' to keep them entertained. Wakker Dier described the move as a 'small but important' step.

Dutch supermarkets and many other food firms have already made the switch. Now the hotel group and Johma will change to one-star meat in January 2015 and Subway at the end of next year.

Wakker Dier is now concentrating on sausage maker Kips and the Dr Oetker frozen pizza group which still use pigs from factory farms with no stars.

Related Articles:

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

As Many as 23 Companies Said to Be Involved in Riau Fires This Year

Jakarta Globe, Apr 21, 2014

An aerial photo shows thick smoke rising from burning peat land in
Meranti, Riau, on March 6, 2014. (EPA Photo/Azwar)

Pekanbaru. Indonesian Environment Minister Balthasar Kambuaya said on Monday that as many as 23 companies were allegedly responsible for fires and haze that struck Riau earlier this year, although police so far have named only one of them a suspect.

“Civilian investigators of the [environment] ministry have questioned 46 companies, and found evidence that 23 companies burned forests and lands,” Balthasar said during a meeting in Pekanbaru, according to Indonesian news portal liputan6.com. “We will delve into this case; this is an environmental crime.”

A total of 21 ministry investigators have been sent to Riau to investigate the case, Balthasar said.

He refused to name any of the companies, saying only that investigations are expected to be completed in six months.

More than 700 hotspots were detected across Riau at the height of the fire and haze crisis in the province in March, disrupting flights at the local airport and neighboring ones, as well as causing air pollution to spike to hazardous levels.

More than 100,000 people in Riau and neighboring provinces suffered from respiratory illnesses due to the haze, according to local health agencies.

The emergency status for Riau was only lifted in early April after three weeks of special operation involving central government officials, police officers and the military (TNI). By that time, police had named 110 individuals and a plantation firm — National Sago Prima, a subsidiary of Sampoerna Agro — as suspects in the case.

Balthasar said the environment ministry would coordinate with Riau Police for legal proceeding as soon as investigations by ministry officers were completed.

“We’ve also involved expert witnesses to support investigations,” the minister added.

Forest Ranger ‘Tarzan’ Seriously Injured by Komodo’s Bite

Jakarta Globe, Made Arya Kencana, Apr 21, 2014

A 47-year-old forest ranger was bitten by a Komodo dragon on Sunday.
(AFP Photo/Romeo Gacad)

Denpasar. A forest ranger suffered serious injuries after being attacked by a komodo dragon in East Nusa Tenggara on Sunday.

Tarzan, a 47-year-old forest ranger, was feeding deer in Jagawana Loh Baru Post, in the southern part of Rinca island, Komodo National Park, when a medium-sized male komodo suddenly bit him on his left leg. Tarzan tripped and tried to break free by hitting the animal’s leg with the bucket he was using to feed the deer.

“The vein on his left leg was severed, and he needed surgery,” Tarzan’s wife, Siti Nur, told Jakarta Globe on Monday from Sanglah regional hospital, Denpasar, Bali, where Tarzan is being treated.

Siti said the komodo bit Tarzan and wouldn’t let go for at least five minutes. After breaking free from the komodo, Tarzan sought help. She said Tarzan was bleeding profusely from the gaping wound on his leg.

Tarzan was first taken to a health clinic in Labuan Bajo by a speedboat, but he was then immediately brought to a hospital in Bali because of the severe wound.

“We only gave him an antibiotic injection and performed a suture on his wound to stop the bleeding,” said Kelana, the health worker at Labuan Bajo who administered first aid to Tarzan.

Siti said Tarzan has been working as a forest ranger at Komodo National Park for 27 years and has never experienced such an incident.

“He did this kind of work every single day, but this thing has never happened to him,” she said.

Sanglah’s hospital spokesman, Kadek Nariyanta, said the doctors have performed a surgery to reconnect the severed tendon and vein.

“Right now the patient is recuperating in our hospital,” she said.

A bite from a komodo can be deadly if left untreated because of bacteria from the reptile’s saliva.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Aceh Police Arrest More Suspected Elephant Poachers

Jakarta Globe, Nurdin Hasan, Apr 16, 2014

In this handout photo taken on August 8, 2013
and eleased by World Wildlife Fund-Indonesia
on August 22, 2013, female elephant Ria, right,
walks next to her newborn in Tesso Nelo National
Park,Riau Province, Sumatra.(AFP Photo/
World Wildlife Fund-Indonesia)
Banda Aceh. Police in Aceh have arrested another six people for allegedly killing a Sumatran elephant for its tusks, bringing to 12 the number of suspected poachers nabbed in the case.

Adj. Sr. Comr. Faisal Rivai, the police chief in West Aceh district, said on Wednesday that the latest suspects were arrested on Tuesday in separate locations based on information from the six already in custody since Saturday.

He said the suspects, accused of killing a male elephant earlier this month, claimed they were not after the tusks initially.

“They confessed to killing the elephant because a herd of elephants had been destroying their crops,” Faisal told the Jakarta Globe.

He said it was only after the elephant was killed that they hacked off its tusks and sold it to a fence in Southwest Aceh district. Faisal said police had identified the suspected fence and were now looking for him.

Police on Tuesday announced that they had arrested six residents of Teupin Panah village in West Aceh for their alleged roles in killing the male elephant and two others, in Blangpidie in Southwest Aceh district and in Seumantok village in West Aceh.

They are accused of setting up booby traps to kill the endangered animals, then selling their tusks to the fence in Southwest Aceh.

One of those arrested on Tuesday, Hamdani, told reporters at the West Aceh Police headquarters that the ivory was not their main motivation for killing the elephant.

“Lots of residents have lost their crops to the herd of elephants. We’ve reported it many times to the authorities, but there’s never been any attempt to shoo away the elephants,” he said.

Police have charged all 12 suspects under the 1990 Natural Resources Conservation Law that could see them sentenced to up to 12 years in prison if convicted.

Genman Suhefti Hasibuan, the head of the Aceh Natural Resources Conservation Agency, or BKSDA, welcomed the arrest of the suspected poachers but warned of the potential for even more human-elephant conflicts in the province as the animals’ habitat was cleared for farmland.

“There needs to be a concerted effort from all sides — from the local authorities, the BKSDA and the residents — to resolve these human-elephant conflicts,” he told the Globe. “If we don’t do that, the conflicts will keep happening.”

Genman said his agency had recorded 20 incidents of elephants encroaching onto farms or villages in Aceh in the past three months, multiple times in some places.

Rare baby camel makes his debut at a zoo in Hungary

Yahoo – AFP, 15 April 2014

AFP - A one-week young camel, named Ilias, and its eight-year old mother,
Iris, are pictured in Budapest Zoo and Botanic Garden on April 15, 2014

A baby camel of the endangered wild Bactrian or Camelus bactrianus ferus species made a first appearance at Budapest Zoo on Tuesday, following its birth last week.

Baby Ilias, a male, was born on April 9, to its eight-year-old mother, Iris, whose maternal line has lived at the zoo for several generations.

Ilias -- whose father came from a zoo in Miskolc, a city in north-eastern Hungary -- was only presented to the media on Tuesday to give him time to bond with his mother, zookeepers said.

"When he was born there were problems, the baby was looking for milk from the mother, but as this was her first baby she had no experience," Zoltan Hanga, a spokesperson for Budapest Zoo told AFP.

"Us zookeepers had to hold down the mother and gently help the baby to feed."

Most wild Bactrian camels today are in fact domesticated.

A small group of around 800 to 900 live in the Gobi desert in Mongolia and China, but according to experts, are close to extinction.

Budapest Zoo was opened in 1866, and is one of the world's oldest zoos.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Loyal Dog Waits For Days Outside Hospital To Reunite With His Sick Owner

The Dodo, Stephen Messenger, 11 April 2014 

Lauri da Costa, a homeless man from the city of Passo Fundo, Brazil may not have much in the way of material possessions, but he is rich in other ways -- especially when it comes to the loyal companionship of his best friend, his dog.

On March 31, Lauri fell victim to a random assault during which a rock was thrown that struck him in the face. Injured, he then made his way to the local hospital to get treated, while his pet, a 4-year-old mutt named Seco, sat patiently out front.

But what was suppose to be a brief visit to the emergency room became an extended stay. Once there, physicians discovered that Lauri had melanoma on his face, and would need to be hospitalized as he awaited surgery to have it removed. Meanwhile, Seco kept vigil outside the hospital doors for his master to return.

As the days dragged on, staff took notice of the dog and made sure he had plenty of water and food as he waited. After the eighth day, even though Lauri was still recovering, doctors made an exception allowing the man and his loyal dog to be reunited early -- a touching scene captured on video.

Lauri still has some time left to recover before he's healthy enough to be discharged, but according to a local news station, Seco has returned to his post out front to greet him when he finally is.