Monday, December 31, 2012

Zoo News Digest 18th - 31st December 2012 (ZooNews 840)

Zoo News Digest 18th - 31st December 2012 (ZooNews 840)

Chillingham Cattle by Landseer



Dear Colleagues,

Wishing all my friends and colleagues all the very best for 2013. The past year has been a good one for me. In fact the years seem to get better as I get older. I have met some truly wonderful people and in my 'out of zoo' life learned of things which previously never even entered my imagination. As a result I would like to think I have become wiser, more compassionate and understanding but at the same time remaining very concious of the adage "There's no fool like an old fool".

Zoo News Digest will continue. Please support it. Spread the word. It reaches more people in more zoos more often than any medium and has been doing it longer than anyone else. It gets out the news that matters as well as information on jobs, meetings. Okay I know I can be opinionated and critical but I care. The lies and propoganda spread by the bad and dysfunctional zoos needs to be exposed for the good of ourselves and the animals we care about and conserve.

Zoo Biology will continue. If you are a Zoo Professional then you owe it to yourself and your animals to be be a member. It puts you in a position not only to help others as well as to learn. Isn't that what we all want to do in the coming year? Help other and learn? I liked the idea of the '26 acts of random kindness' that was recently suggested on Facebook. Why not double it, treble it, continue with it.

So happy 2013 to one and all! If you are passing through Dubai then give me a call. I am busy much of the time but can always spare time for a coffee and a chat.

Much to comment on but limiting it to the below. Check the links. Lots of interest.

Delighted to read of the number of visitors to Sharjah desert park during 2012. This in my humble opinion is the best zoo in the Middle East. Conservation, Research and Education are at its core. Add to that enrichment, cooperation, dedicated staff and then you really do have something very special. Other zoos could learn a lot from Shrajah.

The Best Zoo In The World

I have often stated that you should not believe everything you read in the press or at best take it with a pinch of salt. The following story demonstrates this so well I thought I would break it down into parts:

3 rare white lions born in Ukraine zoo
Yalta Zoo welcomes rare, multiple birth of majestic white lions
The Yalta Zoo in Ukraine celebrated the rare birth of three white lion cubs last week.
Captivity births among white South African lions are rare, and multiple cub births even more so.
According to the zoo, the cubs are being bottle-fed inside the zoo because of the extreme cold snap in the country.
There are only about 500 white lions left worldwide. Nearly all of them live in captivity. The majestic animal has been driven to the brink of extinction by poaching.
Reintroduction efforts are underway, and two prides now exist in a private sanctuary in the Timbavati bushveld region, the zoo said.
The Yalta Zoo is the only privately-owned zoo in Ukraine. There are over 120 animal species in the zoo, including Ukraine’s only white tiger.,7340,L-4323468,00.html

"3 rare white lions born in Ukraine zoo"
Rare? Most certainly not.
White Lion Breeding Is Not Conservation

"rare, multiple birth"
Have I missed something here? A singleton would be a rarity. Three I would expect the norm.

"the cubs are being bottle-fed inside the zoo because of the extreme cold snap in the country."
I grant you cold COULD be a reason for pulling a cub but was it really necessary?
See Hand Rearing Lion Cubs and Other Carnivores

"Nearly all of them live in captivity. The majestic animal has been driven to the brink of extinction by poaching."
Extremely inbred of no conservation value snd a very popular inclusing for Canned Hunts
Canned Hunting

And they finish on  "including Ukraine’s only white tiger"
What's the point? Yet another Dysfunctional Zoo.

You like Tigers? You care about them? You want to educate the publice? You want to get the right information out there. Make it you new years resolution that every time you see a facebook photo or link that you post this link 'Why Breeding White Tigers Is Not Conservation'. Lets teach the public the truth. The fewer white tigers there are the more space we will have for genuine conservation programmes.

I remain committed to the work of GOOD zoos, not DYSFUNCTIONAL zoos.


Please Think About This
Take two minutes to make a small annual donation to ensure the continuation of Zoo News Digest. Click HERE or on the donate button at the top of the Blog page. Quick easy and simple to do. Donations of any size, small to large are appreciated. In return you will recieve more than 400 important or interesting zoo related postings per year plus notification of vacancies and meetings and symposia.


Looking for a job?
Several new vacancies online
Check out
Got one to advertise? email me

This blog has readers from 154+ countries: Afghanistan, Algeria, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cote D’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eire, England, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, French Guiana, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guam, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lapland, Lao, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Montenegro, Montserrat, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Northern Mariana Islands, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palestinian Territories, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Reunion, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay, US Virgin Islands, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Wales, Yemen, Zambia. 

Is your meeting/conference/symposium listed here?
If not why not? You want people to attend, don't you? ZooNews Digest is read by more zoo people than any other similar publication. I will advertise up till the event.

Please visit the
if you are looking for books for yourself or as gifts.


To Learn More or Order Please Click

Malabon zoo adds 50 snakes to collection
In anticipation of the Year of the Water Snake in 2013, Malabon Zoo has added 50 snakes to its collection.

Malabon Zoo head Manny Tangco said people can expect a good year as the Year of the Water Snake will bring food to their tables.

He also appealed to the public not to harm snakes as these reptiles help ensure balance in the ecosystem.

Snakes often feed on rats and mice which damage

Malabon Zoo - Unintentioned Cruelty based on Ignorance - A Dysfunctional Zoo

Investigators fear Big Cats could be dying out in Scotland
DESPITE 70 sightings of Big Cats being reported in Scotland, the total amount of incidents is down by almost half from 2011.
BIG cat investigators fear the elusive creatures could be dying out in Scotland after sightings plummeted to their lowest in 25 years.
Around 70 reports have been made to Big Cats in Britain’s Scots-based team this year – almost half the number in 2011.
One witness claimed to have seen a hissing, 4ft-long panther on his garden bench in Irvine, Ayrshire, last month.
And a stunned mum said she feared for her children’s safety after spotting another beast while jogging on an estate near Ellie, Fife, in January.
But despite the Fife and Moray areas being this year’s hot-spots, the total amount of reports are well down.
Mark Fraser, of Big Cats in Britain, said he was puzzled as to why the number of incidents – which are based on visual sightings, paw prints, sounds and evidence of devoured animal carcasses – had dropped.
But he said: “Unless they are breeding, they are going to die out. We do get evidence of cubs but there is

Big Cats? Big Joke

How Ringling Bros. Keeps Walking the Legal Tightrope on Elephant Abuse
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) settled a protracted case related to elephant abuse with Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey today, agreeing to pay the circus' parent company $9.3 million. But even with this victory for Ringling Bros., evidence of three-ringed animal cruelty continues to mount.

This case started way back in July of 2000, when the ASPCA and other animal rights advocates filed a complaint alleging that Ringling Bros. used hooks and chains on elephants in violation of the Endangered Species Act. Their case fell apart when lawyers discovered that a key witness—former Ringling Bros. elephant handler Tom Rider—had received over $190,000 by the ASPCA and other litigants. In 2009, the court decided in favor of Ringling Bros., and today the ASPCA settled with Ringling Bros. over charges of litigation abuse. The circus' owners, Feld Entertainment, are still going after a handful of other animal rights organizations. Feld's CEO Kenneth Feld

Farglory Ocean Park successfully hatches nautilus
The Farglory Ocean Park in Hualien has become the first in the country to hatch the ancient marine animal the nautilus, which is said to have an average survival rate of less than one in 1,000 after hatching.
The park said that because the incubation period of the nautilus is more than 365 days and there are still a number of unsolved mysteries about it, observers from the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium, the National Dong Hwa University and Japan’s Toba Aquarium have been sent to the park to study the animal.
Farglory Ocean Park chief executive officer Wu Fang-rong (吳方榮) said the nautilus has long been a mystery and the first operational nuclear-powered submarine used by the US in the 1950s was also named the Nautilus.
The submarine mimicked the way the nautilus floats and sinks in the water, he said, adding that while most shellfish or snails have asymmetrical, spiral shells and no chambered sections, the nautilus’ spiral shell is symmetrical and there is a small tube connecting the chambered sections, but it is a mystery how the animal evolved to have such a bod

Wild Cats in Zoos
More than 70 animal advocates protested in front of the Beijing Zoo, demanding an investigation into the deaths of two stray cats living in the zoo, where volunteers are trying to establish a cat sanctuary. The protest is the latest in a cat-and-mouse game between cat lovers, who have been building shelters for the stray animals, and zoo officials, who have been knocking them down, blaming them for destroying the zoo's environment and claiming the cats could spread contagious diseases among the other animals. In October, the

More than 400 zoological institutions are working together to enhance wildlife conservation

Prominent zoos and aquariums worldwide now use the Internet to collect and
share real-time information that could lead to the survival of vulnerable species

Eagan, Minnesota, USA (November 6, 2012) – Today, more than 400 zoos and aquariums across the globe are using an integrated, web-based application to assure the health and well-being of their animal collections. The ISIS Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS) application allows members of the International Species Information System (ISIS) to contribute to – and learn from – the largest online global database of zoological information ever assembled.

Built over the last 40 years, the vast ZIMS knowledgebase will be used by the zoological community, researchers and others to ensure the survival of numerous species that are threatened with extinction. Zoos and aquariums have already become leaders in the effort to breed endangered animals, and to educate an estimated 700 million visitors each year about the magnificent and fragile interrelationships between humans, wildlife and environments.

Through zoos and aquariums the European bison (Bison bonasus), Arabian oryx (Oryx leucoryx) and Przewalski's wild horse (Equus przewalski) have been rescued from extinction, and there are programs in place to help many more vulnerable species. (See success stories at

“ISIS represents an unprecedented effort to unite the global wildlife conservation community,” said David Field, Zoological Director of the Zoological Society of London and ISIS Board Chair. “Brought together by common goals and needs, many ISIS members are among the world’s leaders in protecting and nurturing animals in human care, and in our natural environment.”

ISIS is a technology-based, conservation-focused organization that leverages available technology to help zoological organizations achieve sustainability and preservation goals. Today, more than 800 institutions in 83 countries are a part of ISIS. And the network is constantly growing.

“ISIS is one of the few non-profits in the world that develops software. We have chosen to do it for one simple reason: it’s the best tool we could create to help our members preserve endangered and threatened animal species worldwide,” said Roger Stonecipher, ISIS CEO.  “For almost 40 years, ISIS systems have evolved through the direct input of our members.”

To view a complete list of ISIS members who use the Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS) application, see the ISIS website at:

Many zoological organizations join ISIS so that they can observe best practices and data standards for their animal information.  As part of a global consortium, ISIS members are forging a new path in collaborating and sharing information on more than 2.8 million animals – many endangered or threatened species.

The ZIMS application is not the first software created for this purpose. Since 1974, ISIS has created various software packages. ISIS software has long been recognized as the world-standard best practice for zoological record-keeping by international regulatory bodies like CITES. The latest ZIMS application is an evolution of previous ISIS software; it is comprehensive, integrated, real-time and created specifically for our members’ uses.

About ISIS
ISIS provides the world-standard in zoological data collection and sharing software to more than 800 member zoos, aquariums and related conservation organization in more than 80 countries. The ISIS global database contains information on 2.8 million animals – 10,000 species – and is constantly growing. ISIS serves as a centre for cooperative development of zoological software for in-facility use.

Trained Bear Handler Mauled to Death
Investigators say 24-year-old Benjamin Cloutier, a trained bear handler, was an employee of "Animals of Montana," a wildlife park near Bozeman.
He reportedly was cleaning the pen of two captured brown bears before one of them attacked.

That bear had to be put down to recover the victim's body.
An "Animals of Montana" trainer says "Griz" the bear, believed to have mauled the 24-year-old, was one of his favorite animals.
The Gallatin county sheriff says, nothing was heard at the time of the accident, and the

£200,000 statue to honour Edinburgh Zoo bear that fought the Nazis
SIX foot Private Wojtek was the pride of the Polish infantry before he retired to Edinburgh Zoo - now the city is preparing to mark the 50th anniversary of his death.
A BEAR that fought the Nazis before seeing out the rest of its days in Edinburgh Zoo is set to be immortalised by a statue in the city.
The 6ft Syrian bear was known as Private Wojtek and was the pride of the Polish infantry.
An orphan, Wojtek was reared by soldiers and he helped them in their struggle against the Nazis by carrying boxes of shells.
And like many of his human comrades, Wojtek was known to drink beer and smoke cigarettes.
Now, a huge bronze cast of the bear – expected to cost £200,000 – is set to be placed in Princes Street Gardens next year to mark the 50th anniversary of his death.
The sculpture, by Alan Heriot, will be the centrepiece of a campaign by the Wojtek Memorial Trust to highlight the story.
Aileen Orr, author of Wojtek The Bear: Polish War Hero, said: “This is one of the classic stories of World War II. You don’t have to embellish it because the story itself is incredibly exciting and sad.”
Wojtek – meaning “smiling warrior” – was

Chillingham cattle: rarer than the giant panda
From a safe distance, perhaps 200 yards, they resemble sheep. But focus your binoculars on those shaggy white coats and you’re swept back 800 years to a time when the distant ancestors of these animals grazed these same hills. As we approach, the more curious bulls – no sheep here – trot towards us, bumping up against each other, pawing the ground. They are breathtakingly beautiful, with mottled white, scraggy faces and red, fox-like ears. They are Chillingham cattle, the oldest-known breed of cattle in the world.

You’ll find the herd – 93 animals – in open parkland in north Northumberland, south-west of Berwick and above Chillingham village, with its 12th-century castle. “These are the last remnants of wild cattle; you can’t see this anywhere else in the world,” said Richard Marsh, the park warden from the charitable Chillingham Wild Cattle Association, which owns the herd. “This is a unique experience. They are rarer than the giant panda.”

The cattle graze in the thrilling shadow of the Cheviots, and beyond that the Firth of Forth. Amid the undulating hills, medieval alders dip their branches in streams while holly, crabapple and hawthorn punctuate the fields and valleys. Echoing across this landscape are the mournful grunts of the Chillinghams, a primordial, unnerving hooting that reverberates straight from the reign of Henry III.

Arabian Zoo and Aquarium Association formed following meeting of regional zoos and aquariums in Al Ain
Following the Arab region's first zoo and aquarium meeting, Al Ain Zoo today announced the unanimous agreement by delegates from the UAE, Qatar, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Jordan and Bahrain to establish the 'Arabian Zoo and Aquarium Association' (AZAA).
The agreement was made in the presence of Dr. Gerald Dick, Executive Director of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).
AZAA will facilitate communication, collaboration and cooperation among members with regular engagement with national institutions.
Al Ain Zoo will continue to play a principal role, providing office space and allocating staff time to coordinate regional communication and to form a working group of members to proceed with the development of mandate, membership criteria and guidelines.
The association would provide a louder voice for the region and a foundation to discuss challenges and opportunities related to wildlife conservation, standards and animal welfare issues.
H.E. Ghanim Al Hajeri, Director General for the Zoo & Aquarium Public Institution in Al Ain (ZAPIA), commented, "We are thrilled with the result of these meetings and for the enthusiasm of our regional counterparts in an initiative that will only further our shared commitment to protect and conserve wildlife. As a group, we have identified areas for future collaboration, and at Al Ain Zoo we look forward to taking the lead in this next phase that will see the historic establishment of AAZA."
Salma Sulaimani, Director of Public Affairs in Rabat Zoo in Morocco, further commented, "We commend Al Ain Zoo's initiative to establish AAZA. This is a great step forward for the zoo and aquarium community of the region, especially given the success of associations in other regions around the globe. Many zoos in the Arab world have been witnessing major transformations in exhibit development, breeding policies and animal welfare, and this means there is an absolute need to have a platform to exchange knowledge and expertise. Rabat Zoo will offer its full support to ensuring the success of AAZA."
Engineer Mohammed Al Hawashi, General Supervisor of Riyadh Zoo in Saudi Arabia, added, "We are grateful to Al Ain Zoo for inviting us to be a part of these meetings, and we appreciate the need for a regional association that will further develop our community and encourage the zoos of the Arab world to enhance standards and conditions to that of our global counterparts. Riyadh Zoo has recently implemented a series of developments as part of our commitment to wildlife conservation and preservation, and knowledge sharing with regional institutions will certainly drive forward further development."
Al Ain Zoo is a proud member of WAZA - an organisation

Q and A: Irus Braverman, author of Zooland: The Institution of Captivity
Irus Braverman didn’t grow up visiting zoos. Braverman’s first zoo experience wasn’t until adulthood, when her
daughter dragged her to the Buffalo Zoo. An associate professor of law at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Braverman found herself flooded with questions. But mainly, she wondered, how does this work?

In her new book, Zooland: The Institution of Captivity, Braverman explores the evolution of zoos, debates between pro- and anti-zoo advocates and the ‘performance’ of zoos. Below are excerpts from our recent interview.

How did you come to write a book about zoos?

It didn’t just come to me as an idea for a book. It was a lengthy process. I grew up in Jerusalem. Where I grew up, the zoo wasn’t as much of a strong institution as it is today in the United States. I don’t have any memories from my childhood of zoos. For me, when my older daughter was old enough to drag me to the Buffalo Zoo, it was my first encounter with a zoo. I came to it [with thoughts like], “What is this?” and “Why are so many people standing in line?” and “Why are we looking at the animals?” The emotions were pretty strong. It’s fascinating to see these animals, but there are feelings of “Why are we staring at them?” Everything

For More Details or Purchase click

24 mammals added to threatened fauna
TWO dozen mammals have been added to the Philippines’ official list of threatened species, the environmental group Pilipinas Ecowarriors said on Saturday.

The group’s convenor, former senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, identified the 24 species of threatened mammals as the Palawan flying fox, Isarog shrew mouse, binturong, Dinagat hairy-tailed rat, Dinagat hairy-tailed cloud rat, Panay bushy-tailed cloud rat, Ilin hairy-tailed cloud rat, bushy-tailed cloud rat, flying lemur, Philippine tube-nosed fruit bat, Southern Luzon giant cloud rat, Dinagat gymnure, wooly flying fox, grey flying fox, small flying fox, white-winged fruit bat, little golden-mantled flying fox, bearded pig, Visayan warty pig, Philippine warty pig, and the Calamian treeshrew.

Three other little-known mammals without common names – the Haplonycteris species A from Sibuyan Island, the Pteropus species A from Mindoro, and the Subspecies A from Sulu—were also added to the red list.

“These mammals have been classified either as vulnerable or endangered,” said Zubiri, former chairman of the Senate environment and natural resources committee.

Philippine species are categorized as threatened once their habitats have suffered extreme depletion and their populations have shrunk to a level below which the species or subspecies will be completely wiped out.

Threatened species are further sub-categorized either as vulnerable or endangered, or critically endangered.

Vulnerable means the populations of the species are under threat from serious adverse factors throughout their range and are believed likely to move to the endangered category in the near future.

Endangered means the species are at great risk of extinction and survival is unlikely if casual factors continue to operate.

In compliance with existing international and national laws, the Philippines keeps a registry of wildlife species “of priority concern for protection and conservation.” It is updated r

Trained sardines pack them in at Marine World
Trained dolphins, seals and killer whales are daily attractions at most sea parks and aquariums around the world. But trained sardines?
At Marine World Umino-Nakamichi, divers are entering the water each day to feed a school of about 10,000 tamed Japanese sardines, or maiwashi. Illuminated by the blue light of the aquarium, the sardines are shining swirls of silver as they dash about the upper levels of the tank with the diver.
In Japan, it is rare for divers to be able to do so, the aquarium said, adding that it took two months for the fish to be tamed. At first, the sardines were fleeing from divers when they entered the

‘Yak insurance’ plan saves Nepal’s snow leopard
The remorse felt by Himali Chungda Sherpa after he killed three snow leopard cubs in retaliation for his lost cattle inspired him to set up a scheme to prevent other herders from doing the same.
Sherpa lost his cattle near Ghunsa village at the base of Mount Kangchenjunga on the Nepal-India border, later finding their remains in a cave beside three sleeping snow leopard cubs. The Nepalese herder put the cubs in a sack and threw them into the river, finding their bodies the next day.
“From that night onwards the mother snow leopard started crying from the mountain for her cubs, and my cattle were crying for the loss of their calves.
“I realised how big a sin I had committed and promised myself that I would never do such a thing in the future.” Four years ago Sherpa, 48, founded with other locals an insurance plan for livestock that conservationists say is deterring herders from killing snow leopards that attack their animals.
In doing so the scheme has given hope for the endangered cat, whose numbers across the mountains of 12 countries in south and central Asia are thought to have declined by 20 per cent over the past 16 years.
Under the scheme, herders pay in 55 rupees ($1.50) a year for each of their hairy yaks, the vital pack animal that is also kept for milk and meat, and are paid 2,500 rupees

Tiger deaths reach all-time high of 88
India saw a sharp increase in tiger deaths, which reached an all-time high of 88 tigers dead in 2012, according to data released by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).

This is the highest number of fatalities in one year, overtaking the 71 tiger deaths in 2011.
 Mortality rates have been unusually high in Corbett National Park and Tadoba Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra. Overall, a large number of tiger deaths have been reported from the states of Maharashtra and Karnataka and can be attributed to increased poaching. Both Maharashtra and Karnataka recorded 14 tiger deaths each while Uttarakhand reported 12 deaths followed by Madhya Pradesh with eight deaths while 28 tigers died due to natural causes.
 The last all-India tiger population estimation in 2010 had placed the number of tigers at 1,636. Wildlife conservationist Belinda Wright blames government apathy. “Wildlife crime has become a lucrative business which provides high motivation to poachers. Unfortunately, ground-level protection is not able to match the skills and ruthlessness of these tiger-poaching gangs.”
 Expressing concern, tiger biologist Ullas Karanth has called for the implementation of “a solid system of monitoring of tiger populations across our states”. “The NTCA has put a Phase 4 monitoring protocol in place. While some states are following it, others are laggards

Illegal Ivory Trade
Most of the illegal ivory seized in large-scale shipments in the past three years originated in Kenya and Tanzania. The shipments were primarily bound for markets in China.

Rare Turtles Hatched At Bronx Zoo
There are some new and very rare additions to the Bronx Zoo.

Five Chinese yellow-headed box turtles — considered to be one of the 25 most endangered turtles in the world – were hatched at the zoo’s Reptile House.

There are fewer than 150 Chinese yellow-headed box turtles left in the wild, which is why the zoo’s work is so important.

“The success we are seeing in the early stages of this program is encouraging,” Bronx Zoo director Jim Breheny said in a statement. “Over time, we hope to expand our turtle propagation work to extend to many of the most endangered species of turtles

The Second Edition

To Learn More or Order Please Click

Chimps day out: Pair jumps out of enclosures in city zoo
Monday, Lucknow zoo's weekly off, proved fortunate as had visitors including children been around, tragedy would have struck. Chimpanzees came out of their enclosures and put zoo staff on their toes for more than an hour, before they could be pushed back into their cages after being tranquilised.

The chimpanzees, Jason and Nikita, are in cages located right at the centre of the zoo premises. On Monday, the two swung on the branch of a babool tree and came out of their cage.

While the female was lured back into the enclosure by the zoo staff, the male had to be tranquilised. Jason, the male, is slightly aggressive in nature and it took zoo officers and staff about half an hour before they could control the animal.

The zoo officers agreed the incident could have been dangerous

Over 300,000 visit Sharjah desert park
The Desert Park of the Environment and Natural Reserves in Sharjah had attracted around 300,000 visitors in 2012.
Hana Saif Al Suwaidi, Chairman of the Environment and Natural Reserves in Sharjah, said the visitors included some 195,000 at the Arabian Peninsula Animals Centre, and about 73,000 at the Natural History and Botanical Museums and 96,000 visitors at the Children’s Farm.
Al Suwaidi attributed the big number of visitors to the diverse workshops and activities the Desert Park organises on a regular basis. “The easily accessible Desert Park, located 28km off Sharjah city on Al Dhaid Road (Interchange-9), comprises several eateries, cafes, apart from the Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife.”

The park covers an area of one square kilometre and offers three venues in one with the Sharjah Natural History Museum and Botanical Museum, Arabia’s Wildlife Centre and the Children’s Farm. The Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife is also located at the park and is an impressive research and breeding facility, but not open to the public.

“The park is definitely one of the most popular and highly recommended attractions in the UAE,” Al Suwaidi said, adding that school and group visits are welcome but advance booking is required.

Elaborating, Al Suwaidi said not only does the Wildlife Centre house the world’s largest collection of Arabian wildlife but it is also the only zoological park in the Middle East to be completely indoors, making it perfect for a day out, regardless of the weather.

“The Wildlife Centre has been divided up into various sections, each dedicated to a group of species including reptiles, invertebrates, birds, nocturnal animals, ungulates and large carnivores.”

“The breeding centre is currently home to 30 Arabian leopards of which 25 were born here,” said Al Suwaidi explained.

Earlier this year, the centre witnessed the breeding of an

Nainital Zoo authorities provide food supplements, medicine to keep animals warm
With temperatures plummeting, authorities at the Nainital Zoo are providing food supplements and medicines to the animals to keep them warm during the winter.
The diet of the animals includes honey, eggs and other food items, which would help to keep the animals warm.
Speaking to the reporters, the zoo's director, Parag Madhukar, said the all-possible steps are being taken to protect the animals from the harsh winter.
"We are providing them with food supplements by mixing them in the food items. Other medicines, which we are giving them comprise mainly of B Complex, which keep their body warm. So, by providing the animals with medicines and other food supplements, we are trying to ensure that they are able to beat the harsh winters as the temperatures falls below minus degrees. So, we are trying to create a conducive atmosphere for the animals," said Madhukar.
During the winter, authorities at the zoo normally provide heaters and blowers around the enclosures to keep the animals warm.
This time, they are resorting to a new method of feeding

Peter the Red Nosed Elephant

Stiff Drink Saves a Pair of Freezing Elephants in Siberia
Using a similar philosophy as to what many have said might have helped save some Titanic survivors — liquor — two elephants were reportedly rescued with a similar means.

Emergency ministry spokesman Alexander Davydov said Friday, according to the Associated Press, that the elephants part of the Polish circus were in a trailer that caught fire Thursday outside the city of Novosibirsk, forcing trainers to take them out into the bitter cold before another truck arrived to deliver them to a warm gym at a local community college.

The two animals age 45 and 48 drank 2.6 gallons of vodka diluted in warm water. Later, a veterinarian said only the tips of their ears were frostbitten.

Although scientists say that

NY salamander restoration project marks milestone
Biologists report a milestone in the Department of Environmental Conservation's "Hellbender Headstart" program.
 The program aims to save a giant species of salamanders — called hellbenders — from extinction. Last month, a captive-raised hellbender named "Audrey" was one of the first to be recaptured in the wild.
 According to DEC, Audrey appeared to be doing well, weighing nearly 40 grams more than on her release in July.
 Beginning in 2009, just over 400 young hellbenders were raised at the Buffalo Zoo as part of DEC's effort to revitalize dwindling New York populations. To date, 146 juveniles have been released into the Allegany River watershed, with the rest to be released in 2013.
The aquatic creatures are

Animal exports slammed
The Zimbabwe government has come under renewed attack after it exported four elephants to China.
Environmentalists say the future of the young elephants is bleak because they had been separated from their family units.
“The elephants were transported by road, a trip that took 12 hours from Hwange to Harare Airport where they were loaded into an airplane and flown to Dubai,” the Zimbabwe Conservation Taskforce (ZCT) said. “This flight took 10 hours and from Dubai, they were allegedly flown to Beijing.” ZCT said the elephants weighed a combined 3.9 tons which implies that they were very young.
“The fact that these elephants are juveniles indicate that they are being taken away from their mothers and family units are therefore being destroyed,” the animal rights group said.
“It is further reported that another 14 elephants are being held in Hwange (National Park), also awaiting exportation in January 2013.
“It is said that the final destinations of the elephants are two zoos in China.
“We are very concerned because we believe this constitutes cruelty to animals.”
The Hwange game reserve, the largest in the country has more than 30 000 elephants.
ZCT said some elephants do not survive the long trips and that it feared those that survived will be subjected to a life of captivity in the Chinese zoo.
Gifts to the king
“It is a well known fact that Zimbabwe has a serious poaching problem and

Mugabe trades elephants in covert deal with China
ZIMBABWE is sending baby elephants from its drought-ravaged Hwange region to two Chinese zoos under a covert deal struck by president Robert ­Mugabe, conservationists warn.

Four elephants left Harare late last month for Dubai en route to Beijing after a 12-hour journey by road from Hwange to Harare, said the head of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, Johnny Rodrigues.
Hunters claim at least “a couple [of] dozen” baby elephants have been captured in an operation overseen by rangers from the state-run Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority in Hwange, a vast dry park in the north-west. Up to 14 more elephants will leave in January, activists fear.
The parks authority – once seen as a bulwark of conservation until some officials were accused of involvement in poaching – is understood to have been against the deal first mooted months ago. Government vets were sent to survey the Chinese zoos and found them lacking, sources say. But President ­Mugabe is believed to have ­personally intervened. Now the authority won’t comment.
While Asian elephants may be common in Chinese animal parks, these are likely to be the first African elephants there – if they survive the trip. One of the zoos is understood to have a circus attached. “There’s a good reason why South Africa hasn’t sent elephants to China,” one animal welfare worker said.
Another activist said: “It’s been a bit of a shocker. National Parks haven’t said anything to us yet. We’ve had confirmation that they’re in China already.” It’s not clear what China offered for the elephants. But the Asian giant’s eagerness to gift money and infrastructure to Zimbabwe in return for diamond mining concessions is no secret. Gearing for a bruising election fight next year, Mr Mugabe, 88, says China is

Shark tank terror! Giant aquarium explodes in China sending predators, fish and huge shards of glass into crowd
Fifteen people were hurt as the 10 inch-thick protective glass burst
Sharks, turtles and fish died at the shopping centre in Shaghai, China
Fifteen people were hurt by flying glass and fish when a giant shark-filled aquarium exploded at a shopping mall yesterday.

Shoppers were hit when the 10inch thick protective glass gave way without warning in Shaghai, China, while other terrified passers by fled in panic.

The entrance to the Dongfang shopping mall was flooded and covered in glass when the 34-tonne casing suddenly

The Journal of Zoo and Aquarium Research
 in December 2012
~°v°~  ~°v°~  ~°v°~  ~°v°~  ~°v°~
Hello ZooLex Friend,
We have worked for your enjoyment!
ORANG.erie is an example of converting a historical building for today's requirements of Zoo Schönbrunn in Vienna. At the beginning of the 19th century, the orangerie was a green house for wintering citrus plants (orange trees). Today it accomodates the zoo's education department and library, a cafe, a hall for functions and conferences and orang-utan holding facilities. From inside, the orang-utans can watch people on the public street, in the hall and in the park.
The Zoo in Vienna "Schönbrunner Tiergarten" is the oldest existing zoo. It was founded as Imperial Menagerie in the gardens of Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna in 1752 and opened to the public in 1765.
This year, the zoo celebrated its 260th anniversary. We congratulate!
ZooLex Gallery:
With support of many volunteers around the world, we have been able to publish 280 presentations (including translations) of 169 exhibits from 91 zoos in 41 states in the ZooLex Gallery so far.
Promotion for ZooLex:
ZooLex manager Monika Fiby gave presentations at a symposium on the "Future of Zoos" in Buffalo, USA, at the German speaking zoo conference "ZooKunft" in Innsbruck and at the German Zoo Directors Conference in Graz.
ZOOS' PRINT is an online magazine published by the Zoo Outreach Organization Z.O.O. ( The monthly issues of the magazine regularly include ZooLex exhibit presentations.
ZooLex Editors:
We wish to thank all those who have taken their time to compile and submit information for exhibit presentations. Translations of exhibit presentations were prepared from English to Spanish by Eduardo Diaz Garcia and from German to English by Hannah Gängler, our ZooLex intern in summer 2012.
Our free monthly newsletter is distributed to a steadily increasing number of subscribers, whose addresses mostly indicate zoos. The quality of ZooLex publications is ensured by our editorial board whose members edit and comment on all newsletters, Gallery presentations and papers prior to publication and dissemination. We wish to thank all our editors for this valuable support:
Barbara Brem, Jon Charles Coe, Lee Ehmke, Monika Fiby, Pierre Godlewski, David Hancocks, Andrei Kotkin, Monika Lange, Nevin Lash, Ivan Lozano Ortega, David McGuire, Dirk Petzold, Mark Sparrow, Simon Tonge, Joris Verbruggen, Enquan Zhang and Kimio Honda whom we welcome as a new editor:
ZooLex Design Courses:
Jon Coe and Monika Fiby are both landscape architects, zoo consultants, and editors for ZooLex. They both participated in giving a workshop on zoo design for architects and engineers working with zoos in India by invitation of the Indian Central Zoo Authority in Delhi in February.
In October, Monika gave a workshop on zoo design for the EAZA Academy together with Roger Graf from Zoo Zurich.
Cooperation with WAZA:
Links to the ZooLex Gallery are available on the website of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums at 56 out of 91 zoos presenting their exhibits in the ZooLex Gallery are WAZA members.
Sponsors are the only financial support for ZooLex. Thanks to these sponsors, we can offer free access to high quality information on zoo design. Companies and organizations listed in ZooLex Firms offer special services and products to zoos and similar institutions.
ZooLex Statistics:
We are counting a monthly average of 30,000 visits, 200,000 page views and 1,000,000 hits to the ZooLex website.
Season Greetings to all our supporters and readers and our best wishes for the New Year!
We keep working on ZooLex ...

The ZooLex Zoo Design Organization is a non-profit organization
registered in Austria (ZVR-Zahl 933849053). ZooLex runs a professional
zoo design website and distributes this newsletter. More information and

Celebrating Plants and the Planet:

Before you foreswear reading biology for the holiday break, there’s one last dose of botanical news for 2012. December’s links at (NEWS/Botanical News) reveal startling interactions between plants and the world as well as inspiring work by international scientists:
·        There’s a new reason for kissing under the mistletoe: recent research shows some species may fight colon cancer without the damage that chemotherapy can cause to nearby cells.
·        Flowers can’t give up their goods to just any pollinator that happens by; they need to await the best suitor. A tropical species of rhododendron employs ants to act as bouncers.
·        Moths are picky nectar feeders, preferring only specific nectars. But they are not stupid. When their preferred nectars are unavailable, they can learn where alternate acceptable nectars are.
·        Many plants extract heavy metals from the soil, and some species are planted to help clean up polluted sites. Now scientists hope to develop bacteria to extract those rare elements from the plants for industrial use.
·        Hummingbirds seem to prefer to feed in the most awkward and energy draining posture. High speed videos are being used to find out why.

In the spirit of the season, spend a few minutes watching flowers dance

Please share these stories with associates, staff, docents and – most importantly – visitors! Follow on Twitter:  – a new story every day as well as hundreds of stories from the past few years.


Importance of Perris company’s elephant breeding
If you’re wondering why the elephant breeding that Have Trunk Will Travel is involved with is important, here’s why
This Sumatran elephant was allegedly poisoned by poachers for its tusks in Indra Makmur, Aceh province, Indonesia, on Friday, Dec. 14. The male elephant, estimated to be 4-5 years old, was found dead with the tusks removed.

This is an Asian elephant, just like the ones Have Trunk Will Travel are breeding with the Oregon Zoo. I wrote an article about their deal earlier this week. You can read it here.

Have Trunk Will Travel is breeding elephants with the zoo up north and recently had a new baby, named

Does Wildlife Conservation Justify Wildlife Captivity?
The Kimmela Center for Animal Advocacy, recently published an article addressing conservation efforts in relation to animal rights. This, (and an interesting discussion on Tumblr,) has inspired me to delve deeper into the issue of zoos, aquariums, and conservation.

In response to the question of whether or not zoos and aquariums are important, a post was made in a discussion on Tumblr by a captivity supporter citing The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) handbook entitled “Why Zoos and Aquariums Matter.”  The handbook focuses on education as contributing to wildlife conservation. Part 1 of the handbook, explains the results of a study which polled the general public, religious leaders, politicians, and conservation biologists. The poll found that the majority of the public, religious leaders, and politicians, support zoos and aquariums. However, “more than half,” of the conservation biologists polled had been anti-zoo and aquarium at one point, criticizing such facilities for their lack of education and conservation efforts. No more data regarding the opinions of conservationists on zoos and aquariums is provided in the handbook. This is unfortunate  because conservation biologists are the individuals who directly observe the affects

Stop Sea Turtle Farming

Thai deputy PM charged over export of 100 tigers to China
A Thai deputy prime minister was charged Wednesday in connection with the export to China of 100 tigers, an endangered species protected by international law, the attorney general's office told AFP.

Plodprasop Suraswadi approved the export of tigers from Sriracha Tiger Zoo -- a popular tourist attraction a few hours from Bangkok -- to a Chinese breeding firm in 2002. He was the head of the forestry department at the time.

He was charged under an article in Thai law which includes the "abuse of power, failing to carry out his duty and/or corruption," according to Teerayhut Mapame of the attorney general's office.

It was unclear why the charges were being brought a decade later.

Plodprasop, who became one of the nation's deputy prime ministers in November, admitted sending the endangered creatures to China but denied the charges against him.

"I'm not wrong as I have always performed my duty. Sending the tigers to China was not wrong," Plodprasop told reporters after being granted bail of $4,000.

"If anyone accuses me of wrongdoing, then

Sri Racha Tiger Zoo
This evil place continues to breed huge numbers of tigers as do many of the other slum zoos of Thailand. You do not have to think to hard to give a really good guess as to where they are all going.

Penguin eats young in China zoo - video
Surveillance footage shows a penguin eating its own newly-hatched chick at a zoo in northeast China's Heilongjiang province. The male penguin tried to feed the youngster, but when the chick didn't accept the food he started pecking at it, picked it up

Zoo data show low incidence of animal–human infection
Zoonotic transmission rates are low and the risk for animal-human infection is well managed, show zoo data spanning 19 years.
"Ongoing assessment of risk factors is needed as environmental, human and animal disease and management factors change," suggest Craig Pritchard (New Zealand Centre for Conservation, Auckland, New Zealand).
A total of 49, 42, and 46 zoo staff participated in the 1991, 2002, and 2010 surveys conducted by Pritchard et al, including questions on animal exposure and illness compatible with a range of zoonotic infections.
Participants also underwent serologic testing for infections including hepatitis A virus (HAV), Toxoplasma gondii, and Chlamydophila psittaci, as well as feces testing, skin sample examination, and Mantoux (in 2010, the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-tube test) testing for tuberculosis.
The cohort comprised animal handlers, veterinary clinic staff, grounds, horticulture, and maintenance staff, and public education, office, and support staff, who, in the 2010 survey, had been employed at the zoo for a median of 5 years.
The majority of staff (80%) had domestic animals at home, including dogs, cats, birds, fish, turtles, and poultry.
In all, 16 staff from the 2010 survey reported 18 work-related conditions or exposures over the preceding 5 years including skin allergies from specific species and/or chemicals. One participant had a dermatophyte infection

Work on Indian gaur breeding centre begins
Work on India's first Indian gaur breeding and research centre at Koorgalli began on Wednesday.
 Zoo Authority of Karnataka chairperson M Nanjundaswamy laid the foundation stone for the fencing works. The centre at Koorgalli, 12km from the city, is being set up in association with Central Zoo authority (CZA). The forest department recently handed over 113.21 acres of land to Mysore zoo to set up the centre, a project

Toronto elephant move to PAWS targeted for spring
It remains a tough pill for some to swallow, but the Toronto Zoo is now working toward a spring target to get its three remaining elephants on a plane to PAWS.

Tension was apparent Tuesday morning at the meeting of the zoo’s board of management, its first since city council voted 32-8 last month to send the zoo’s aging female African elephants to the California sanctuary.

That vote reaffirmed a decision council made on the elephants last year. But by doing so, councillors once again rejected the advice of trained zoo staff.
Prior to the latest vote, the zoo’s CEO and senior veterinarians had urged city councillors to cancel PAWS (the Performing Animal Welfare Society) as the pachyderms’ destination. The zoo wanted them sent to an Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) facility in Florida, which isn’t built yet.
Several zoo staff attended Tuesday’s board meeting, dejection etched on their faces. There were heated exchanges during the meeting. Councillor Glenn DeBaeremaeker, who voted in favour of the move to PAWS, harshly admonished one senior zoo employee for “heckling’’ during the meeting.

There were also tense exchanges between board members DeBaeremaeker and Councillor Gloria Lindsay Luby, who voted against the move to PAWS.

Last month’s council resolution ordered that Toka, Thika and Iringa go to PAWS on or before Dec. 31, 2012 — or as soon as possible. Zoo CEO John Tracogna said that date wasn’t feasible.

“We’re looking at a spring date. That seems to be

My, how you've grown: Zoo keeper in tears as he and gorilla are reunited 20 years after he hand-reared him in his bedroom
When a mother gorilla failed to bond with her baby daughter, zoo-keeper Ron Smith and his wife Barbara were quick to volunteer as foster parents.

The couple, who had no children of their own, looked after Salome for the first year of her life, giving her a cot in their bedroom.

Thirteen years later, in 1990, Mr Smith bade an emotional farewell to the ape when he was made redundant at the age of 60. Two years later she was transferred

Twycross Zoo awards for welfare and education work
TWYCROSS Zoo has received two commendations for its welfare and educational work.

Staff were presented with the accolades for Significant Advances in Husbandry and Welfare and Best Education Project at a prestigious ceremony held at West Midland Safari Park.

The annual Zoo Awards, organised by the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums, recognises and rewards the work and successes of its members.

Sharon Redrobe, the zoo’s zoological director, said: “I am delighted the zoo received two co

EAZA Academy Prospectus 2013

Former zoo owner charged with sexually abusing employee who was attacked by tiger
The teenager attacked by a tiger in Branson West four years ago is now the alleged victim in statutory sodomy case against the former owner of the zoo.
    Breck Fleming Wakefield, 46, of Branson West, faces two counts of first-degree statutory sodomy, eight counts of second-degree statutory sodomy and two counts of sexual misconduct involving a child under the age of 15. Another alleged victim is noted in the case.
    According to a probable cause statement, the alleged victim told Stone County deputies a sexual relationship started in 2005, when he was a 13-year-old intern at the zoo.
    “(The alleged victim) stated shortly after his employment started, he found himself alone with (Wakefield) in the aquarium building at the facility,” the statement reads. “(He) stated (Wakefield) made several sexual remarks his penis and asked him to do the same.”
    The alleged victim said the abuse started occurring weekly beginning in the fall of 2005, mostly occurring at Wakefield’s residence.
    “(The alleged victim) stated in the summer of 2006, he told (Wakefield) that he wanted the sexual abuse to stop,” the statement reads. “(He) stated Wakefield encouraged the relationship to continue by providing (him) with special treatment at the zoo and would pay him money for sex. (He) disclosed going on numerous trips, out of state, with (Wakefield) and being sexually abused.”
    The alleged victim was injured in the 2008 tiger attack at Predator World while inside the cage to take a photo for guests, according to Branson Tri-Lakes News archives.
    “(The alleged victim) said the attack left him confined to a wheelchair,” the statement reads. “(He) said the sexual abuse continued during this time. (He) said Wakefield rented a duplex in St. Louis

Oakland Zoo gets $1 million check from anonymous donor
The Oakland Zoo has received a $1 million check from an anonymous donor, the zoo announced Friday.
A letter from The San Francisco Foundation arrived Friday with the check -- $1 million from the Serendipity Fund. A message to zoo president and CEO Joel Parrott simply indicated that a donor had advised the grant was to be used for general purposes.
The zoo's director of development, Emma Lee Twitchell called the San Francisco Foundation, learning only that the donor wished to be anonymous and that no other information was available.
"Every now and then, something truly extraordinary occurs at the Oakland Zoo that causes me to just shake my head in disbelief, and be thankful," Parrott said. "We received an unsolicited anonymous unrestricted donation of $1 million for the zoo, distributed by the San Francisco Foundation. This has never occurred on this scale before. It is simply a gift. "
The funds might be especially welcome at the

Minnesota Zoo hopes to save native butterfly from extinction
The 20 larvae inside Minnesota Zoo conservation biologist Erik Runquist's office freezer would easily fit inside a thimble and could represent the last hope for a species of native butterfly that roamed Minnesota's prairies.
The Poweshiek Skipperling floated above more than 2 million acres of Minnesota prairie in the days of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Now, less than 1 percent of that prairie remains and what Runquist and other experts call "the most Minnesotan of butterflies" hasn't been seen here since 2007.
"They just fell off the map. It may already be extinct in the state," said Runquist, who is leading the zoo's growing efforts in butterfly conservation.
The small tracts of remaining prairie in the state have left many native species that called it home on a precarious perch. Butterflies like

TSA Opens New Turtle and Tortoise Facilities in Myanmar
It’s official!!   Myanmar’s first turtle and tortoise rescue facility was dedicated on December 6, at the Zeepin Forest Reserve, Ban Bwe Tree Nursery, about 17 miles east of May Myo, in Shan State. TSA President Rick Hudson handed over the keys to the new Turtle Rescue Center (TRC) to U Myint Sein of the Forestry Department saying “It is our sincere hope that this facility will offer new hope to thousands of turtles and tortoises confiscated from the illegal wildlife trade.” The TRC is located along the Lashio Road which leads to China, and is a major trade route for illegally harvested wildlife coming out of Mandalay heading for the border.  Lashio was originally selected as the site for the TRC but plans changed due to logistical concerns and moved to a forestry station outside of May Myo, locally known as Pwin Oo Lwin.  Aside from being more accessible

Lion's share of landscape praise for Linton Zoo
LINTON Zoo, on the Uttlesford border, has been commended for its landscaping work.
Kim Simmons, zoo director, said: “We are thrilled to receive this top honour from BIAZA. This award particularly highlights our efforts in preserving and supporting native plants and wildlife, whilst providing the main residents an enriched three dimensional space in which to live.

“It also encourages natural behaviour while maintaining our high levels of animal welfare.”

The bushy vegetation in the “Lions’ Paradise” lion enclosure is typical of the work recognised at the awards ceremony at West Midland Safari Park.

The winning projects were selected against strict criteria by   assessors including external experts, as well as professionals from within the zoo community.

Linton was one of 23 to receive a commendation. Held annually for over a decade, the BIAZA awards recognise outstanding contributions and achievements in the fields of wildlife conservation, advances in animal welfare and husbandry, marketing, PR, education, research, and enclosure design.

Dr Miranda Stevenson, director of BIAZA said: “The BIAZA awards highlight the crucial work carried out in zoos and aquariums.

“All of this year’s award-winning projects show the exceptional contributions our members are making to wildlife conservation

February 4 to 9, 2013

The Danger of Captive Dolphin Encounters
Bottlenose dolphins certainly aren’t as innocent as they are often mistakenly believed. Unlike the majority of animals, they possess the self-awareness to actually understand the consequences of their behaviors, and do indeed commit violent acts against other cetaceans outside of their own family units. Yet, such misconceptions may have evolved due to how wonderfully the animals interact with humans. Humans are often enthralled with the playful and curious nature of bottle-nose dolphins and surprised by their intelligible persona. This leads people to seek out interacting with dolphins in the wild, and popularly, in captivity where ‘swimming with dolphin’ encounters are the star attractions. Such facilities are seemingly innocuous, but recently, some of the dangers of engaging in this activity are surfacing. In recent news, a little girl was filmed in graphic detail to have been attacked by a dolphin. The animal lunged out of the tank and grabbed her arm, leaving several bite marks. Her concerned parents are now 'raising awareness' by passing around

Mysore zoo adopts improvised methods to treat injured tigers
Sri Chamarajendra Zoological?Gardens, popularly known as Mysore Zoo, has adopted new techniques in providing treatment to injured tigers.
A four-year-old tigress was rescued on December 4, after it was trapped in a barbed wire fence at Kanuru village, in Virajpet taluk of Kodagu district. As the wild cat had sustained injuries on her left forelimb with mild lacerations and punctured wounds, it was sedated and brought to the Mysore zoo.
Keeping in mind the past experiences in treating injured tigers, the Zoo authorities
are  treating the four-year-old by adopting improvised methods. The tigress has been kept in isolation at the zoo hospital. Only doctors and a keeper wearing “gown for camouflage effect to reduce human imprints” are allowed to treat and monitor her. Besides, the tigress is being monitored round the clock with the help of a CCTV?camera.
A press release from the executive director of the zoo stated that animal keeper Bhaskar has improvised on the medical advice “as approaching the tigress on crouching is preferable.’ The tigress is being treated by zoo doctors led by assistant director Dr Suresh and Dr Prashant.
The animal keeper approaches the tigress, wearing gown, by crawling on the ground and with ease he sprays antiseptic

Family donates $500,000 to Memphis Zoo's new hippo camp
The Memphis Zoo is half a million dollars closer to its $17 million goal for its Zambezi River Hippo Camp exhibit thanks to a Memphis family's gift.
Thomas Garrott said his family committed to giving $500,000 because the zoo is "inspirational."
"The bottom line is that the zoo is one of Memphis' greatest attractions," said Garrott, 75. "It's not only a great attraction for children in this city, but children in surrounding areas, too. That's why my family wanted to contribute."
Garrott, former president of National Bank of Commerce, said that before now he had limited his donations to education and the arts, but felt compelled to give to the zoo because of all it has done for Memphis.
"The zoo really benefits all of us living in this area," he said. "It's great for tourism and business development."
The new "Hippo Camp" will host the zoo's two resident hippos, Julie, 54, and her offspring Splish, 24, both descendants of Adonis

Big cat recorded on video
VIDEO footage of two separate sightings of a large feline at a property within 50km from Lismore will be sent to the Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo.

Experts at the division of Taronga Zoo should be able to determine the nature of the animals on the recordings.

Shaun Britz of Nimbin confirmed he received the video from a friend of his who preferred to remain anonymous.

The recordings were done at the same property by the landowner with a video recorder.

The recording showed two different sightings, the second one "recorded three months after the first one, at the same property," Mr Britz.

Both pieces of footage showed the animal moving around a property, at a distance of over 100m from the camera.

The videos were recorded months before Shaun Britz's sighting last week.
He said he received the video last week after he saw a big feline while driving along Shipway Rd, near Nimbin Rocks.

"It is definitely the same type of animal that I saw. It is the same jet back colour," he said.

He said that the big cat in the video, which he suspects could be a type of panther, runs as fast as the animal he saw nearby Nimbin.

Shaun Britz said there was anecdotal information

Death of 2 cats sparks zoo protest
More than 70 cat lovers chanted "Sack the zookeeper!" in front of the Beijing Zoo on Sunday, demanding an investigation into the deaths of two stray cats living on the zoo grounds, where volunteers are trying to establish a cat sanctuary.
The protest is the latest in a cat-and-mouse game between cat lovers, who have been building shelters for the stray animals, and zoo officials, who have been knocking them down, claiming the cats could spread contagious diseases among the other animals.
A woman surnamed Sang, who feed cats in the zoo and participated in the protest, said that a dog chewed a small cat to death several days before.
"I can tell it's a big dog because the shelter for the cat is totally damaged," said Sang, noting she saw dog footprints.
Sang says volunteers did not realize the seriousness of this issue until two days later, when more dog footprints were found, and another cat were

The December 2012 issue of ZOO’s PRINT Magazine (Vol. XXVII, No. 12) is online at in a format that permits you to turn pages like a regular magazine.

If you wish to download the full magazine or certain articles click on
December 2012 | Vol. XXVII | No. 12 | Date of Publication 23 December 2012


Feature articles

First Arabian Zoo and Aquarium Meeting in Al Ain

P. 1

Dr. Miranda Stevenson, O.B.E. - an innovator and a dynamic influence in zoo conservation and welfare - honoured by the Queen of England

Pp. 2-3

From Catapults to Curiosity – Under the Canopy An education program in Nagaland - a reflection on the last three years

-- Payal B Molur, Pp. 4-7

COP 11 Indian Alliance for Zero Extinction Side event, 17 October 2012 at Hyderabad, India

-- Priyanka Iyer, Pp. 8-10

Human Elephant Coexistence teaching and educator skills training workshop: Nilgiri report

-- B.A. Daniel and R. Marimuthu, Pp. 11-12

The Barrier Lake experience - Conservation Leadership Programme’s Leadership Training, Alberta, Canada

-- Martina Victoria Stephen Paul, Pp. 13-14

Technical articles
Combining field work with GIS analysis to produce a Land-Use Map

-- Walter B. Burwell III, Kamal Medhi and Arpan Sharm, P. 15

Sand Impaction in Capybara

-- Shanaz Amin and Naim Akhtar, P. 16

Winter Avian Population of River Brahmaputra in Dibrugarh, Assam, India

-- Utpal Singha Roy, Anulipi Aich, Abhishek Roy Goswami, Ajit Kumar Sen and S. K. Mukhopadhyay, Pp. 17-19

Isosporan infection in domestic sparrows (Passer domesticus)

-- Nagappa S. Karabasanavar and Padmakar D. Deshpande, P. 20

A Preliminary Survey of Gastrointestinal Parasitism in Captive Herbivora of Sidhhartha Municipal Zoo, Aurangabad

-- Ghoke, S.S., Naikwade, B.S., Sakhare, M.P., Awaz, K.B. and Bhik, P. 21

A case of total albinism in the Bonnet Macaque Macaca radiata (Geoffroy) from Goa

-- Anil Mahabal, P.D. Rane and S.K. Pati, Pp. 22-23

Biodiversity status and conservation strategies with special reference to North-East India by R. Varatharajan - book review by Daniel

P. 23

Distribution of Hybanthus puberulus M.Gilbert. (Violaceae) – A new record for Karnataka

-- Parthipan, M. and Rajendran, A., Pp. 24-25

Remembering Francis Day

P. 25

Linking fragmented Biodiversity spots by building Green Corridor along the stretch of the river Yamuna

-- Natasha Sethi and Saurabh Vashisth, P. 26

Indian Wildlife Week Reports
Wildlife Week Education Reports

Pp. 27-32

Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo wins 'Images Most Admired Retailer of the Year - Leisure and Entertainment' award
Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, Emaar Retail LLC said: "The Most Admired Retailer of the Year award underlines the premier position of Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, as a world class leisure and entertainment attraction. We focus on assuring our visitors the best experiences and regularly renew our themed campaigns to ensure that guests are not only entertained but also have a strong insight into sustainable development and environmental conservation."

Heat wave kills City Zoo polar bear
Winner, the last polar bear living in the Buenos Aires City Zoo died early on Christmas morning "due to the unusually high temperatures, combined with Christmas eve fireworks and the bear’s nervious temperament,” a communiqué released today confirmed.

Winner was a 14 year old male polar bear who had arrived from Santiago, Chile, and was one of the zoo’s feature attractions.

“With deep sadness we announce that early yesterday

Cotswold Wildlife Park paying respects to founder
THE Cotswold Wildlife Park is closed to visitors today for a special service following the death of the park’s founder, John Heyworth, at the age of 87.

Mr Heyworth founded the park in 1970 at his family home, Bradwell Grove, near Burford, which is the Strawberry Hill Gothic manor house and 3,000-acre estate he had inherited from his grandfather in 1948.

Due to crippling death duties, he had leased out the house and grounds for 20 years to the local health board. By the time he got it back in 1969, the house had fallen

The 52nd issue of the Journal of Threatened Taxa is online at
We thank all the subject editors, reviewers, language editors and authors for their contributions in producing this issue.
December 2012 | Vol. 4 | No. 15 | Pages 3377-3472

Date of Publication 26 December 2012 (online & print)


Pollination biology of the crypto-viviparous Avicennia species (Avicenniaceae)

-- A.J. Solomon Raju, P.V. Subba Rao, Rajendra Kumar & S. Rama Mohan, Pp. 3377–3389

Philodendron williamsii Hook. f. (Araceae), an endemic and vulnerable species of southern Bahia, Brazil used for local population

-- Luana S.B. Calazans, Erica B. Morais & Cassia M. Sakuragui, Pp. 3390–3394

Sonneratia ovata Backer (Lythraceae): status and distribution of a Near Threatened mangrove species in tsunami impacted mangrove habitats of Nicobar Islands, India

-- P. Nehru & P. Balasubramanian, Pp. 3395–3400

Status, threats and conservation strategies for orchids of western Himalaya, India

-- Jeewan Singh Jalal, Pp. 3401–3409

Conservation status of Dendrobium tenuicaule Hook. f. (Orchidaceae), a Middle Andaman Island endemic, India

-- Boyina Ravi Prasad Rao, Kothareddy Prasad, Madiga Bheemalingappa, Mudavath Chennakesavulu Naik, K.N. Ganeshaiah & M. Sanjappa, Pp. 3410–3414

Endemic orchids of peninsular India: a review

-- Jeewan Singh Jalal & J. Jayanthi, Pp. 3415–3425

Ecology and conservation status of canebrakes in Warangal District of Andhra Pradesh, India

-- Sateesh Suthari & Vatsavaya S. Raju, Pp. 3426–3432

Recollection of a rare epiphytic orchid Taeniophyllum filiforme J.J. Sm. (Orchidaceae) after a lapse of 135 years from South Andaman Islands, India

-- K. Karthigeyan, R. Sumathi & J. Jayanthi,Pp. 3433–3435

CEPF Western Ghats Special Series

Validation and documentation of rare endemic and threatened (RET) plants from Nilgiri, Kanuvai and Madukkarai forests of southern Western Ghats, India

-- K.M. Prabhu Kumar, V. Sreeraj, Binu Thomas, K.M. Manudev & A. Rajendran, Pp. 3436–3442

Ethnobotanical value of dry, fallen ovaries of Bombax ceiba L. (Bombacaceae: Malvales)

-- S. Gopakumar & R. Yesoda Bai, Pp. 3443–3446

A report of the threatened plant Decalepis hamiltonii Wight & Arn. (Asclepiadaceae) from the mid elevation forests of Pachamalai Hills of the Eastern Ghats, Tamil Nadu, India

-- V. Anburaja, V. Nandagopalan, S. Prakash & A. Lakshmi Prabha, Pp. 3447–3449

Note on Celastrus paniculatus Willd. ssp. aggregatus K.M. Matthew ex K.T. Matthew (Celastraceae)

-- J.W. Francis, M.M. Dandu, M.M. Sardesai & A.S. Dhabe, Pp. 3450–3453

Checklist of Ericaceae in Tuensang District of Nagaland, India with special reference to Mt. Saramati

-- S. Panda, Pp. 3454–3461

CEPF Western Ghats Special Series

Chasmophytic grasses of Velliangiri Hills in the southern Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu, India

-- Binu Thomas, A. Rajendran, K. Althaf Ahamed Kabeer & R. Sivalingam, Pp. 3462–3472

In case you wish to receive Table of Contents every month please send an email to <> with no subject or text.

Journal of Varanid Biology and Husbandry
Volume 6 Number 2

Teuk Chhou Wildlife Education Park
Cambodia’s ‘zoo of horrors’ is being transformed. Ellie Dyer heads to Teuk Chhou Wildlife Education Park in Kampot town to see what changes are being made.

Inside the gates of Kampot’s Teuk Chhou wildlife park, a dedicated team of animal lovers has united behind a common goal: to change a failing zoo whose skeletal animals made headlines 18 months ago into a state-of-the-art environmental education facility.

It’s an ambitious aim for a sprawling park that is home to 43 species, including tigers, lions and elephants. In March 2011, The Phnom Penh Post newspaper painted a deeply troubling picture of a facility that had fallen into disrepair under the headline ‘The Zoo of Horrors’.

Calling it “quite possibly one of the worst” zoos in the world, the story was accompanied by a photograph of an emaciated elephant, whose bones were clearly visible as it strained through the bars of its enclosure to eat blades of grass.

But along with exposing the poor conditions at Teuk Chhou, which the well-meaning owner put down to a lack of funds, the article had a longer lasting effect — it sparked

International Avian Trainers Certification Board
The International Avian Trainers Certification Board, IATCB, offers you a way to gain professional credibility, increase your earnings potential, and advance your career. We live in a competitive world, and animal trainers are no different than anyone else looking for advanced knowledge and skill in their profession

Breeding of endangered species is futile without habitat protection
While captive breeding of animals is to be lauded, it should not overshadow the task of protecting the ecosystems they live in
This past summer, a team of biologists scoured Siberian tundra in search of nests and eggs of one of the world's most threatened species, the spoon-billed sandpiper - a small shorebird known to Hong Kong birdwatchers as a scarce annual migrant at Mai Po Marshes.
The spoon-billed sandpiper (Eurynorhynchus pygmeus) is the only shorebird with a flattened tip to its bill. In recent years, it has gained another reason for fame as its world population has plummeted from around 1,000 pairs in 2000 to probably fewer than 100 pairs today. As the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) notes, the sandpiper is "hurtling towards extinction".

The tundra-scouring biologists were working on a project to try to save the sandpiper, by raising young birds in captivity to hopefully breed young birds into the wild. They took 20 eggs to the WWT's headquarters in Slimbridge, UK. With 17 hatchlings from these eggs, plus 11 youngsters brought from Russia last year, there are now 28 spoon-billed sandpipers in captivity. Perhaps they will become the nucleus of a breeding group.

While the spoon-billed sandpiper project is ambitious - even desperate - captive breeding is not new. One of the first examples involved Père David's deer, which was native to China but became extinct there in 1900. Some had been illegally exported to Europe, and England's Duke of Bedford gathered the remaining animals to nurture a herd of deer. Their

Man strips naked for zoo tigers
Officials at a Russian zoo said a young man who forced his way into the facility after closing time took his clothes off and threw them to the tigers.

The zoo workers in Kaliningrad said the man told a ticket collector he had to get into the facility after closing time Wednesday because "he's expected" and forced his way onto the premises, RIA Novosti reported Thursday.

A zoo worker discovered the man naked by the tiger cage the following day, with his clothes inside the enclosure. The zoo called police and an ambulance, which took the man to a local hospital to be checked out.

The man was allowed to go home after he was found to be in sound mental health and not under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

No explanation was given for the

The Zoo Biology Group is concerned with all disciplines involved in the running of a Zoological Garden. Captive breeding, husbandry,cage design and construction, diets, enrichment, man management,record keeping, etc etc


Join Zoo News Digest Facebook Page

updated daily


Follow me on

(Click on Follow at the top of the Hubpage)