Adopt an Animal - News

Elephant Poaching Starting To Decline In Some Parts Of Africa

Conservationist Killed Whilst Chasing Elephant Poachers

The illegal poaching of African elephants which has grown rapidly since 2006 seems to be slowing down and may even be decreasing. According to two new reports, the number of elephants being slaughtered for their ivory has declined. The picture in Central and West Africa however is mixed and poaching shows no sign of moderating. Some experts reckon the reason behind the decline in poaching is there are fewer elephants alive.

New data

There is new data on the sources of elephant poaching from the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora which is more commonly referred to as Cites. The organisation runs two elephant monitoring records that are considered to be reliable indicators of what is actually happening on the ground. A couple of months ago the programme called Mike (Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants) found that the number of deaths which started to spike in 2006 actually peaked in 2011. Despite the fact that the trend is moving in the right direction, well over 14,000 elephants were poached between 2003 and 2015.

Levels are different across the continent

Southern Africa is the part of the continent where poaching levels have remained at the lowest. It continues to be the only sub-region were illegal killings have not exceeded natural deaths since monitoring first started. Poaching however still remains high. East Africa has also seen a fall in poaching for the fourth consecutive year. Central and West Africa are where the most significant levels of poaching take place, with illegal killings far exceeding natural deaths.

Elephant populations have fallen

Cites secretary general says there are some encouraging signs including a decline in the overall upward trend of poaching in some parts of the African continent. He adds that this shows what is possible when all stakeholders make a sustained effort backed by strong political support. Others claim that we should not take much comfort in the relative stability of the new figures. Experts say that it needs to be understood that whilst poaching levels may be down, in some cases this is because populations have been severely depleted. For example, In Central Africa, the elephant population has fallen by 70 per cent so whilst you may see poaching stabilise or decrease, this is because elephants are harder to find.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Sick Cheetah Cub Becomes Best Friends With Puppy

Sick Cheetah Cub Becomes Best Friends With Puppy

Everyone needs a friend to lean on when they are having problems. That includes a cheetah cub who received comfort from his BFF which just happens to be a puppy. The 10-week old cheetah cub named Emmet was suffering from pneumonia and needed a friend to help with his recovery. Emmet was born at a conservation centre in Ohio, but not long after his birth contracted pneumonia.

Developing a friendship

For the first few weeks of his life he was hand reared and found it difficult to adjust after he was finally moved to Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. Fortunately, the baby cheetah was able to develop a friendship with a 7-week old puppy named Cullen. Columbus Zoo and Aquarium said Cullen was able to help Emmet become more confident and calm. Cheetahs tend to be quite a skittish species so that was very important.


The zoo says the puppy and the cheetah cub have become the best of friends and are now inseparable and are even going to travel together. Emmet will be acting as the ambassador for wild cheetahs and Cullen will be travelling with him as his companion dog. These two critters are just two of the many animals that live at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and are named after characters from Twilight series of books and movies.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Lions Escape From German Zoo Enclosure

IUCN Warns That Thousands Of Species At Risk Of Extinction

Two lions recently escaped from an enclosure in Leipzig Zoo in Germany. Unfortunately, one of the two lions was shot dead because attempts to use a tranquiliser failed. The two male lions called Motshgetsi and Majo managed to clear their enclosure and leapt over a moat early in the morning before the zoo opened. The two lions were discovered in a terrified state in the undergrowth. Whilst one of the lions was able to be shepherded back to its enclosure, the other lion continued to remain in an agitated state forcing officials to shoot the animal.

“This is a very, very sad ending, which I really would not have wished for,” zoo director Joerg Junhold told reporters. “But in this case personal safety had to take priority.”

Lions were surrounded

The lions are called Etosha lions and get their name from the part of Namibia where they are from. Unfortunately, the two animals arrived at the zoo just last month from Basel in Switzerland. Once the lions were discovered a short distance from their enclosure, they were surrounded by 40 zoo keepers and their vehicles as the handlers attempted to usher them back.

One was returned safely

They were successful in getting one of the lions back into its enclosure, however three hours later the second lion became increasingly agitated as they sought to tranquilise it. According to local media Majo made it back alive, but Motshgetsi had been killed. The zoo has been running the enclosure for 15 years the director said and until this incident, there had never been a problem, however in light of what has happened, security will be reviewed.

Zoo stayed closed

At the entrance to the zoo, crowds started to build up, however the zoo remained largely closed because of the escape. The last time Leipzig zoo had ever experienced a lion escape was in 1913 which resulted in a widespread hunt with all six lions being killed.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

New Home Could Be Found For Sad Polar Bear

New Home Could Be Found For Sad Polar Bear

Animals Asia, which is a welfare charity dedicated to animals says the Yorkshire Wildlife Park has stepped up and offered a suitable new home for the lonely polar bear called Pizza who is holed up in a Chinese shopping mall. Earlier in the year Pizza made global headlines after the Animals Asia kicked up a stink with a petition it started to shut down the shopping centre’s “ocean theme park” which is located in Guangzhou China.

Bear slumped on the floor

Videos of the poor animal show the bear all teary-eyed and slumped on the floor of his enclosure. Neither the shopping centre nor the Yorkshire Wildlife Park have made any comment. The Yorkshire Wildlife Park has a purpose built habitat for polar bears which at present houses four of the animals. The park runs what is known as Project Polar which is described as an innovative habitat for the species. It also runs a research and conservation programme.

“We would be delighted to see Pizza end up at Yorkshire Wildlife Park. There can be a happy ending – Pizza would not only enjoy incredible facilities, he would also be part of a community of bears.” said Animals Asia’s welfare director Dave Neale.

Nothing natural

Animals Asia said there would be no payment made for the bear because the organisation is worried that any money provided would be used to purchase more animals. The owners of the indoor zoo in China claim they have made some improvements to living conditions in the park, however Animals Asia still maintains that conditions remain cramped and there is nothing natural about the park. The park also houses beluga whales, arctic foxes, a wolf and some walrus calves.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Rare Dolphin Spotted Using Its Mouth To Breathe

Rare Dolphin Spotted Using Its Mouth To Breathe

Amongst the cutest mammals in the world is without a doubt is the dolphin. This species is famous for both its friendly nature towards humans as well as its calming look. Recent reports have indicated that one particular dolphin does not use its blowhole but instead use its mouths to inhale. The blowhole is located on the top of the dolphin’s head and is considered to be the nose of the species. It is used to help exhale and until recently was also thought to be used to inhale when they surface.

Conventional wisdom challenged

However conventional wisdom is being challenged by researchers from the University of Otago who are suggesting that the species uses its mouth to breath rather than its blowhole. Recently a dolphin was seen off the coast of New Zealand that was clearly using its mouth to breathe. The scientists wrote that the dolphin was continuously surfacing from the ocean with its head surfacing much higher than the water level. The dolphin’s blowhole which should have been open actually remained close and it could clearly be heard that the dolphin was using its opened mouth to breathe.

We still don’t understand why

It is very unusual for dolphins to use their mouth’s to inhale oxygen, but this particular Hector dolphin has been seen many times using its mouth to breathe and is rarely seen using its nose whilst it is surfing in the ocean. The researchers have been unable to determine why the dolphin breathes the way it does. One possibility could be the dolphin has damaged muscles or there is an object obstructing its blowhole. So far no real explanation has been found.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Elephant Who Never Forgot Her Human Helpers Amazes Them

Elephant Who Never Forgot Her Human Helpers Amazes Them

Staff at an animal sanctuary in Kenya were surprised by a newly born elephant calf whose mother brought her there just after she gave birth. Galana the elephant was raised at a sanctuary managed by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust for seven years. Galana had been discovered weak and fragile all alone in the Kenyan Bush. In 2011 the Trust came to the conclusion that Galana was ready to be released back into the wild where she could lead a normal life like the rest of her species.

Stayed close

Despite being released into the wild Galana never strayed too far away from the humans that helped with her recovery. In fact, she never forgot their impact on her life and made visits back to the sanctuary periodically.  At the start of the month she amazed staff at the sanctuary by showing off her new born calf that was born in the wild not far from the sanctuary.

According to the Trust’s Facebook page: “She was escorted by five wild bulls and our dependent orphans Laragai and Narok were able to be the first nannies to the tiny baby once they left the confines of the night stockades.”

Sharing the good news

The trust added that the elephants were celebrating the new life by charging around and trumpeting. Sanctuary workers named the new born Gawa which means Share in Swahilli. Gawa is an appropriate name for an animal whose mother felt the need to share her birth with the humans who helped to save her life.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Giant Panda No Longer Considered An Endangered Species

Chinese Zoo Welcomes Rare Birth Of Panda Triplets

A leading global conservation group has removed the giant panda from its endangered species list as a result of decades of panda protection. Despite that fact, China voiced its disagreement with the decision, saying that it did not view the panda’s status as being any less serious. The giant panda is a national symbol in China that is beloved by the people of that country.

Vulnerable not endangered

A report that was recently released by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) says the giant panda is now considered to be a vulnerable species instead of an endangered one. The change reflects the fact that the number of wild pandas in Southern China is growing. The population of pandas in the wild leapt to 1,864 in 2014 from 1,596 a decade earlier. The results are due to the efforts of Chinese agencies which enforced bans on poaching and sought to expand forest reserves.

Climate change a major threat

The report expressed concerns about climate change. Whilst it did agree that better forest protection has helped lead to a resurgence in wild panda numbers, climate change will result in the elimination of over 35 per cent of the giant panda’s natural bamboo habitat over the next 80 years. China’s State Forestry Administration says it does not agree with the change in classification because the natural habitat of the panda has been fragmented by both natural and human causes. Pandas live in isolated groups that are few as 10 and as a result find it difficult to reproduce and could risk going extinct.

“If we downgrade their conservation status, or neglect or relax our conservation work, the populations and habitats of giant pandas could still suffer irreversible loss and our achievements would be quickly lost,” the forestry administration said. “Therefore, we’re not being alarmist by continuing to emphasize the panda species’ endangered status.”

Reason to be happy

Nevertheless, conservation groups have lauded the recovery of the iconic black and white bear that has long been a symbol for both China and the global conservation movement. During the 1980’s the panda population fell to an estimated low of under 1,000 as a result of deforestation and poaching. In response the Chinese government threw its full weight behind conservation efforts. In 1980, the government of China and World Wild Life Fund established the Wolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan province. As the country cracked down on trading of body parts and expanded its protected forest areas, numbers have slowly started to recover.

Hard work does pay off

The Chinese government in partnership with international groups have worked very hard to save wild pandas and have sought to breed them at enormous cost. Those efforts have often been criticised, with some organisations arguing the money would have better spent on trying to save other species that face extinction. The IUCN for example points to the fact that over the last two decades, the population of the Eastern gorilla has fallen by over 70 per cent. Contrastingly WWF, whose logo is the giant panda said it was thrilled by the reclassification and added that it proves that aggressive investment does pay off.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Female Rhino Attacked And Killed By Males For Refusing To Mate

Kenya Raises The Stakes In The Fight Against Poaching

A female rhino was killed by two male rhinos who attacked her following her refusal to mate with either of them. The unfortunate incident occurred at the Jaldapara National Park in the Indian state of West Bengal. The state is very well known for its large population of one-horned rhinos. According to news reports, the female had apparently lost her calf just a few days before the attack and was wandering across a part of the park when the two bulls attempted to run her off their territory.

Forced mating

As they sought to impose their will on the female, the two males attempted to force her into mating, however she rejected their advances which resulted in the attack said a senior park official. The official said the dead rhino was a sub-adult aged between five or six years old and suffered fatal injuries as the dominant male rhinos overpowered her for mating. Rhinos have teeth that are both incredibly strong and sharp and often attack females if their sexual advances are rejected.

Attack more about food than sex

A ranger that was apparently at the scene of the incident attempted to stop the attack by firing his rifle into the air, however that attempt failed. Experts reckon that the attack was more about the female looking for food in the territory of the males rather than her rejecting their advances. These kind of attacks are common during the summer when food if more difficult to come by. More often than not however, the weaker animal will attempt to escape rather than continue to fight.

Rhino is endangered

The Indian rhino can be found in a few parts of the North of India and Nepal. It is now an endangered species because it has been rampantly poached for its horn. Chinese and Vietnamese traditional medicine uses the horn to treat a variety of ailments.  During the early 2000’s the popularity of rhino horn powder fell, however by 2008 its popularity began to rise again after rumours began to spread that the powder had the ability to cure cancer. At present, there are roughly 2000 Indian rhinos left in the wild.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Tiger Queen Dies In India

Tiger Poaching On The Rise

Wildlife officials in India say the country’s most famous tiger, a 19 year old named Machli has died. The tigress was known as the Queen of Ranthambore, has been described as one of the most photographed wild tigers in the world. Machli was easily recognisable due to the distinctive fish shaped markings she had on the left side of her face. She was the star of many documentaries and amazed the internet when she fought a 14-foot crocodile and killed it.

Major tourist attraction

Machli was a major tourist attraction for the thousands of visitors to the Ranthambore National Park. India serves as home to more than half the world’s wild tigers and in the latest estimate, there were 2,226 tigers roaming the country. According to officials, Machli was found starving and lying on her side near the boundary of the park in Rajasthan. Officials say she had not eaten for days.

“We were trying to provide her treatment but she died,” Ranthambore tiger project director Yogesh Kumar Sahu told AFP news agency. “It was a natural death linked to her age.”

Many fans

According to the park’s website, over the last few years, Machli had significantly slowed down and lost almost all her teeth. Rather unsurprisingly her death had made headlines in India and fans have paid their respects to the Queen of Ranthambore on social medial. Machli gets her name from the markings on her face which as we said earlier resemble a fish. Machli is the Hindi word for fish.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Oldest Known Killer Whale Turns 105

Killer Whale

This orca was swimming in the ocean before the Titanic made its ill-fated voyage across the Atlantic. This means she has survived two world wars and her existence pre-dates than women’s right to vote. The orca name J2 Granny was spotted last week and estimates put her age at 105 years old. According to the Orca Network, J2 Granny was spotted swimming in high spirits just of the coast of Washington state.  News reports suggest the Orca is thought to have been born in 1911 which would make her the oldest known living killer whale.

Margin of error

The Orca Network has said there is a margin of error of about 12 years surrounding her age. This means J2 Granny could be as young as 90, however that would still far exceed the average lifespan of a killer whale in the wild which ranges from between 60 to 80 years. During her lifetime J2 Granny has been seen swimming up the coast of Washington and Canada. She has even managed to dabble in politics in between her migrations. Granny was recently awarded the title of Honorary Mayor of Eastound Washington and gave a mayoral address back in June.

Whales should be left in the wild

Whilst her age is impressive, Granny is not a loner she is frequently spotted travelling with the J-pod which is a group of approximately 25 killer whales the Orca Network says. Researchers are able to tell her apart from the other whales by her dorsal fin which has a grey patch right behind it. Many have held up the ancient orca as reason for keeping whales out of captivity and allowing them to remain in the wild. According to the Orca Network, killer whales rarely survive more than ten years in captivity as a result of extreme stress and injuries.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the adopt an animal blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

Next Page »