AWI Quarterly

The Farm Bureau Prediction on China


According to the May 2000 issue of Multinational Monitor, Alex Jackson speaking for the American Farm Bureau says, "China is our number one growth market in the world." Wheat, corn, soybeans and meat are expected to be the biggest "market gainers." Jackson claims that by 2020 "China could account for a quarter of all U.S. agricultural exports."

Caribbean Conservation Treaty Spawned

By Adam M. Roberts

Hundreds of species in the Wider Caribbean Region-including the American crocodile, Hawksbill sea turtle, Brown pelican, Cuba Sandhill crane, St. Lucia parrot, Spectacled bear, Giant armadillo, Cuvier's beaked whales, bottle-nosed dolphins and corals-have gained new protection under a Protocol to the Cartagena Convention concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW). When twenty-eight nations signed SPAW in Kingston, Jamaica in January 1990, they did so "conscious of the grave threat posed by ill-conceived development options to the integrity of the marine and coastal environment of the Wider Caribbean Region."

Unlike other multi-lateral conservation treaties such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), SPAW not only protects species by prohibiting trade in wildlife, but also by prohibiting fishing, hunting or harvesting of threatened and endangered species, and by calling on Parties to designate protected areas in their sovereign jurisdiction to sustain "the natural resources of the Wider Caribbean Region." Parties shall, for example, "regulate activities, to the extent possible, that could have harmful effects on the habitats of the species." The protected region under SPAW extends throughout the marine environment of the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean Sea and areas off the Atlantic coast of Florida.

According to an analysis of SPAW by the United Nations Environment Programme, "248 out of the 481 species covered by, or proposed to be covered by the SPAW Protocol are also currently regulated under CITES." This means that 233 out of the 481 species addressed under SPAW gain international protection that would not exist were it not for this valuable Treaty.

Nine countries that signed the Protocol officially have ratified it: Colombia, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, the Netherlands, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Panama, Venezuela, St. Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago. These Parties have historically advocated weak positions on wildlife conservation and endangered species protection. At the most recent meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES in Nairobi, Kenya, the Cuban delegation worked tirelessly (though, thankfully, unsuccessfully) to reopen the international trade in hawksbill turtle shell at the behest of Japan, the primary market for products made from turtle shell, called "bekko." The representative from the Dominican Republic spoke out in favor of this failed proposal. Cuba and St. Vincent and the Grenadines also spoke out in support of a Japanese proposal at CITES to downlist gray whales. Without the involvement and vote of the United States in SPAW there may be no strong conservation voice during the deliberations of the Parties to SPAW. In fact, Cuba is scheduled to host the first important meeting of the Parties this September.

The Treaty was originally transmitted to the United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee on April 20, 1993 and has lain dormant there for eight years now. Then Secretary of State Warren Christopher testified: "All concerned agencies in the Executive Branch strongly support early ratification of the Protocol....I recommend, therefore, that the Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife in the Wider Caribbean Region be transmitted to the Senate as soon as possible for its advice and consent to ratification...."

Now, there is an immediate imperative for the Senate to give its advice and consent to ratification to enable the United States to have a vote during the Parties' Havana Conference. The State Department, which sends to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee a letter every two years outlining the Administration's Treaty priorities, has assured us that SPAW will be toward the top of that priority list. Unfortunately, other, more controversial Treaties, are slowing down the submission of that letter.

The looming question is whether the Foreign Relations Committee will agree to move the Treaty under the new leadership of Senator Joseph Biden (D,DE), who has assisted nobly in saving dolphins from tuna nets.  If it does, will the Senate approve it, will the President ratify it, and will it be submitted to the depositary government, Colombia, in time for the US to have a vote during the first meeting?

Before the historic Party switch of Vermont Senator Jim Jeffords, the Chairman of the Committee was Republican Jesse Helms. On May 15, 2001, New Hampshire Senator Bob Smith sent a letter to Helms encouraging swift action on the Treaty. "The SPAW Protocol will enhance substantially the ability of nations in the Caribbean region to protect indigenous wildlife and the habitats on which these species depend," wrote Senator Smith. The new Senate leadership should listen to Bob Smith and others in support of the SPAW Protocol and approve it without delay.


Seals are one of the many animals protected under SPAW, Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife. (Kip Evans/NMFS)

Bottlenosed Dolphins, the largest of the beaked dolphins, inhabit shallow, coastal waters, and have been traded live from Cuba, the US and Mexico to Portugal, Spain, Honduras, and elsewhere. (J. Stafford-Deitshch)

Vibrantly plumed scarlet macaws are subjected to illegal international trade and are at risk from the destruction of their forest homes. (Dave G. Houser/CORBIS)

Endangered ocelots, mainly hunted for their fur, inhabit jungles, marshes, and tropical rainforests from the United States, through Mexico and Central America, down through Argentina. (Tom Brakefield/CORBIS)

Elephant Seals Hot Iron Branded


Hot iron branding has caused terrible pain to animals, both wild and domestic. Photographs of branded elephant seals, with hot iron brand marks covering a significant part of the animals' sides (both sides so scientists can read the number easily) were published in the Sydney, Australia Mercury.

According to the March 29th Mercury, "The evidence collected shows the brands have created large weeping and infected wounds on many seals." The Parks and Wildlife Director, Max Kitchell, said, "a significant number of seals were left with horrific injuries which could be life-threatening."

The brandings, part of a 10 year population study, have now been mercifully stopped by the Macquarie Island government.

"The Voice of the Turtle is Heard in Our Land"

The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund—What They Do

Just at the close of World War II, a conference in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire created the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), the monster that eventually morphed into the more binding World Trade Organization (WTO).

The World Bank is the largest lender in the world to poor countries, supported in part by almost a billion dollars a year of U.S. tax dollars. The type of development funded is often disastrous: megaprojects such as dams that flood habitats, villages and fertile valleys, huge deforestation schemes, and the conversion of grasslands to trampled cattle farms. When countries cannot meet their payments on the World Bank loans, they borrow from the IMF. The IMF is very willing to make the payments if, and only if, the countries are willing to take its "advice" on how to "improve" their economies. This advice comes in the form of "SAP's," short for Structural Adjustment Programs, in exchange for helping meet their payments. Thus the IMF is able to dictate the economic policies of the debtor countries. Its influence is vast and draconian. If the debtor countries refuse to go along, all international sources of money dry up.

Once in the debt cycle, very few countries are ever able to pay off their debts. Almost two-thirds of the recipients have become more dependent. From 1984 to 1990 alone, the cash flow from third world countries to commercial banks was over 178 billion dollars, prompting one former World Bank official to say: "Not since the Conquistadors plundered Latin America has the world experienced a flow in the direction we see today."

The World Bank and the IMF and Wildlife

This is where animal suffering comes in. Beside the damage wreaked by the megaprojects funded by the World Bank, the "austerity measures" imposed by SAP's continue the pain. The IMF conditions are oriented to opening up the country to foreign investment and development, converting farmland from subsistence agriculture to export crops and cashing in any "resource" available that can earn money on the global market. These "expendable resources" include ancient forests, fisheries and wildlife for the exotic food and pet trade.

The World Bank funded Livestock 1, 2 and 3 to encourage the construction of new cattle farms in Botswana. To sell the meat to the European market it had to be certified as free of hoof-and-mouth disease. Over 900 miles of fencing were strung across Botswana to separate the cattle from indigenous fauna. Tens of thousands of wildebeest died of thirst along the fences trying to reach their traditional watering places.

The World Bank is currently funding construction of an oil pipeline between Chad and Cameroon, through pristine elephant and gorilla forest habitat. To comply with IMF pressure to raise export revenue, Indonesia clearcut and burnt millions of acres of ancient forests to convert into farmland for palm oil and other export crops. Great expanses of forest that the orangutans depend upon have been destroyed.

The World Bank funded construction of a fishing jetty and prawn culture area in the Bhitarkanika Sanctuary, home of the largest population of Olive Ridley sea turtles in India and refuge for sea eagles, and smooth-coated Indian otters.

The shocking result of this World Bank largesse was reported by Reuters, February 18, 2000, as a "Major Endangered Turtle Die Off." The article states that hundreds of endangered Olive Ridley turtles mysteriously died after crawling onto East Indian beaches to nest.

Why We Marched as Turtles

At the WTO meeting in Seattle, AWI helped lead 240 people dressed as sea turtles in protest against the WTO's rejection of U.S. law requiring turtle excluder devices on boats of any country wishing to export shrimp to America.  Several countries refused employing these inexpensive devices, insisting that our law unfairly restricted trade. The WTO struck down our law.

Turtles are also globally imperiled by rapacious development and fishing policies promoted by the IMF and World Bank.  So, the turtle demonstrators resurfaced for a protest in D.C. against these institutions.  The turtles have been a tremendous hit—symbolically protesting the WTO's usurpation of American sovereignty, including enforcement of our animal protection laws, and the ecological destruction wrought by the World Bank and IMF.

Top Photo, drawing by Gary Hodges

Bottom Photo, Sea turtles march against the World Bank and IMF in Washington, D.C. (Jenny Pike)

Tsukiji's Fish Market

Japan's biggest fish market opens at dawn. Nick Haslam described it in The Financial Times 5 May 2001:

"Tsukiji's daily turnover is in excess of $25 million....Those big fish at our feet had been caught in long lines in the South Pacific or the Mediterranean only days before and then placed on ice packed in special wooden containers to be air-freighted to Japan as soon as the trawler docked at its home port. ...Wriggling eels were sliced on chopping boards, large blocks of red whale meat and innumerable species of shellfish and crab lay decoratively stacked on piles of finely chopped ice....Nearby, massive tuna were being cut up by three men skillfully wielding razor sharp long swords."

Long lines attract sea birds who see the bait from above and plunge in, often to be hooked and drowned. These birds include the wandering albatrosses in the South Pacific. An endangered species of albatross is being led toward extinction by long line fisheries. Petrels, too, are frequently captured in long line fisheries, where they die. The sea birds most praised by poets are being wiped out by this fishery in order to supply the expensive tuna to Tsukiji's fish market.

Noting that Nick Haslam described the whale meat as being offered in "large blocks of red whale meat," the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), which has followed boats pursuing the large dolphins called Dall's Porpoises, questions "What kind of whale?" Japan has given itself a "Scientific Permit" to kill minke whales in the Antarctic Ocean. To sell the meat from these challenged "scientific studies" means that the blocks of meat came from minke whales or, this year, from sperm whales or Bryde's whales who for the first time were included in the Japanese self-awarded scientific permit. Or it could have come from Dall's Porpoise meat which is often canned and labeled "kujira," or whale meat.

Caption:  Unloading Dall's porpoise from a truck, Iwate Coast, Japan. (EIA)

Judge Strikes Down Phony "Dolphin-Safe" Label


On April 11, 2000, Judge Thelton Henderson of the U.S. District Court in San Francisco ruled against the blatant defrauding of consumers by the U.S. government. The judge struck down the new "dolphin-safe" label for canned tuna fish—a label that is distinctly dolphin unsafe. Judge Henderson questioned the diligence of the Department of Commerce in adequately studying the reason for the lack of recovery of several species of dolphins, hard hit for decades in the eastern tropical Pacific.

Despite the death of over seven million dolphins who were chased, exhausted and netted to catch the tuna schools beneath them, Secretary of Commerce William Daley made a preliminary finding last year that there was no proof that this technique of fishing caused "significant adverse impact." His finding triggered the release of a new, official Department of Commerce "dolphin-safe" label for canned tuna fish. The new label would have been used on cans of tuna caught by harassing dolphins. Judge Henderson essentially voided this fraud and sent the government back to the drawing board. His ruling came in the nick of time, with Mexico poised to flood the U.S. with tons of dolphin-deadly tuna.

Thanks to especially vocal consumers, all canned tuna now sold in the United States is caught without netting dolphins. All three major American tuna importers have vowed to continue the present definition of dolphin-safe and reject the phony label.

Photo, Spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata) are one of the two species most heavily impacted by being chased and encircled by tuna nets in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean. (Psarakos/Earthtrust)

Canadian Bear Parts Traders Jailed


Two brothers have been jailed and fined for illegal trafficking, possession and transportation of bear parts in Canada. Both men were fined $7,000 and will serve 31 days in jail. "These tough penalties send a clear message that illegal trafficking in wildlife parts will not be tolerated in British Columbia," said Environment, Lands and Parks Minister Joan Sawicki. Both men were apprehended when they delivered 10 bear gall bladders to undercover officers posing as customers. The value of the bear parts seized was estimated at $13,000 on the illegal market. This is reportedly the first time anyone has been convicted and imprisoned in Canada for the interprovincial transportation of bear parts under the federal act as the result of an undercover investigation.

— Information from British Columbia, Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks News Release, May 31, 2000

Animal Welfare Institute QUARTERLY Fall 2000 Volume 49 Number 4


About the Cover
Cover photograph of Ake by Ursula Keuper-Bennett who recognizes individual sea turtles. Her husband Peter Bennett and she maintain a web site on sea turtles ( The WTO recently upheld US regulations that prohibit shrimp imports from countries that do not employ turtle-protection devices (see page 11). Turtles are poached cruelly for their shells, which are made into curios and sold on the Japanese market. A conservation Protocol for the Wider Caribbean Region concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW) can help protect turtles from international trade (see pages 8-9). It is urgent that the US ratify this Treaty in time for the meetings this September. Write Secretary of State Colin Powell (Department of State, 2201 C Street, NW, Washington, DC 20520) to draw his attention to this important Treaty.

Marjorie Cooke
Roger Fouts, Ph.D.
David O. Hill
Fredrick Hutchison
Cathy Liss
Christine Stevens
Cynthia Wilson

Christine Stevens, President
Cynthia Wilson, Vice President
Fredrick Hutchison, CPA, Treasurer
Marjorie Cooke, Secretary

Scientific Committee
Marjorie Anchel, Ph.D.
Gerard Bertrand, Ph.D.
F. Barbara Orlans, Ph.D.
Roger Payne, Ph.D.
Samuel Peacock, M.D.
John Walsh, M.D.

International Committee
Aline de Aluja, D.M.V., Mexico
T.G. Antikas, D.M.V., Greece
Ambassador Tabarak Husain, Bangladesh
Angela King, United Kingdom
Simon Muchiru, Kenya
Godofredo Stutzin, Chile
Agnes Van Volkenburgh, Poland
Alexey Yablokov, Ph.D., Russia

Staff and Consultants
Ava Armendariz, Publications Coordinator
Amy Conklin, Editorial Assistant
John Gleiber, Assistant to the Officers
Diane Halverson, Farm Animal Advisor
Chris Heyde, Research Associate
Lynne Hutchison, Executive Secretary
Cathy Liss, Executive Director
Nell Naughton, Mail Order Secretary
Greta Nilsson, Wildlife Consultant
Viktor Reinhardt, D.M.V., Ph.D.,  Laboratory
       Animal Advisor
Jennifer Rinick, Research Assistant
Adam M. Roberts, Senior Research Associate
Wendy Swann, Research Associate
Ben White, International Coordinator


Table of Contents


Humane Slaughter Act Resolution Introduced


Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. Presents AWI's Albert Schweitzer Medal to Polish Humane Hog Farm Advocate, Andrzej Lepper

What's at stake in Poland? This is what is at stake
by Tom Garrett


Militants and Profiteers Wipe Out Wildlife in the DRC

Killing Continues in Zimbabwe

Caribbean Conservation Treaty Spawned
by Adam M. Roberts

Trendy Talbots Tied to Tasteless Sales

Tsukiji's Fish Market

Consumers Can Save the Chilean Sea Bass

Does BC Stand for "Bear Conservation?"


WTO and Sea Turtles Clash Again and Again

From Antigua and Barbuda to Venezuela, Another "Free" Trade Agreement
by Adam M. Roberts


Agony of Animals at Amgen

Caged Laboratory Animals Drown by the Tens of Thousands


The Smile of a Dolphin

Saving Sharks from the Jaws of Greed

Comments? Questions? Click Here

Music of the Birds


Music of the Birds
A Celebration of Bird Song

Includes audio compact disc featuring songbird concerts and solos
by Lang Elliott, Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1999, 136 pages, $25.00

A book published a few months before the symposium, Music of the Birds, A Celebration of Bird Song, by Lang Elliott, includes a compact disk giving clear reproductions of each of the singers' voices as well as color photographs of each of the bird species captured with open beaks, pouring forth their individual songs. Elliott knows the characteristics of a vast number of bird songs and approaches silently to portray each bird as he sings. Together with the beautiful color photographs, Elliott quotes poets who have written about denizens of North American woods and fields.

Beside a photograph of a Yellow Warbler, William Wordsworth is quoted:

The birds pour forth their souls in notes
Of rapture from a thousand throats.

A photograph of a Scarlet Tanager (photo left) is accompanied by Geoffrey Chaucer's:

Hard is the hert that loveth nought,
In May, when al this mirth is wrought,
When he may on these braunches here
 The smale briddes syngen clere
 Her blesful swete song pitous…

Elliott writes: "Bird song preceded human music. Considered from a scientific perspective, it evolved with the appearance of songbirds during the Pliocene and early Pleistocene periods, several million years ago." His words are illustrated by a photograph of a Wood Thrush.

Elliott chooses Ralph Waldo Emerson's words to illustrate his picture of a Black-capped Chickadee:

There is no sorrow in thy song, no winter in thy year.

The Skylark of Europe inspired Shelley's famous poem, "To a Skylark:"

Higher still and higher
From the earth thou springest,
Like a cloud of fire;
The blue deep thou wingest,
And singing still doth soar, and soaring ever singest.

Opposite the photograph of another sweet singer, the Gray Catbird (photo right), James Russell Lowell is quoted:

As a twig trembles, which a bird
Lights on to sing, then leaves unbent,
So is my memory thrilled and stirred:—
I only know she came and went.

Robert Louis Stevenson was chosen to comment on photographs of Warblers and a Carolina Chickadee:

My bedroom, when I awoke this morning, was full of birdsongs, which is the greatest pleasure in life.

Militants and Profiteers Wipe Out Wildlife in the DRC

Illegal exploitation of the mineral and forest resources of the Democratic Republic of the Congo [DRC] is taking place at an alarming rate," according to a recent Panel of Experts Report issued at the request of the United Nations Security Council. Natural resource raiding is exacerbated by the active external involvement of partisan nations in the region, notably Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Angola.

Some key players in the rape of Africa's natural riches have historically exploited civil turmoil for personal gain and are individually named in the report. One notorious culprit, Mrs. Aziza Kulsum Gulamali, was also implicated in Burundi's civil war, where "she was involved in arms trafficking for the benefit of the Burundian Hutus and was equally involved in gold and ivory trafficking."

Wildlife is impacted detrimentally by the warring in DRC. The Report notes, for instance, that between 1995 and 1999 "in the area controlled by the Ugandan troops and Sudanese rebels, nearly 4,000 out of 12,000 elephants were killed in the Garamba Park" in north-eastern DRC.  Further, "In the Kahuzi-Biega Park, a zone controlled by Rwandans and [the Rally for Congolese Democracy based in Goma] and rich in coltan, only 2 out of 350 elephant families remained in 2000." Rwandan soldiers are implicated in the trading of elephant and buffalo meat.

Other endangered species, including highly endangered gorillas, are under fierce attack in the Congo. Okapis, the short-necked relative of the giraffe whose legs bear markings like a zebra, are rapidly dwindling there. Even the Okapi Reserve can no longer provide safe haven for the roughly 5,000 (of the estimated 30,000) okapis surviving in the wild.

The primary focus of the report involves looting of mineral resources such as coltan (used in high-tech electronic products and everyday modern items such as cell phones), gold and diamonds. A number of western, developed nations have companies importing coltan including Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.  In some instances, the Panel implicated embassy staff in facilitating "the purchase of illegal minerals." For instance: "The United States honorary consul in Bukavu, as he presented himself, Ramnik O. Kotecha, in addition to promoting deals between American companies and coltan dealers in the region, is himself Chairman of the Kotecha group of companies based in Bukavu and deals in coltan."

Unlawful foreign companies further exacerbate the unsustainable timber harvests that threaten the DRC's remaining forestlands. The Report notes that a Ugandan-Thai forest company, DARA-Forest, "consistently exported its timber" without proper certification. The United States is among the list of industrialized countries with companies that import this uncertified timber.

This Report is not the only indication that the volatile state of government rule in the DRC precludes any real oversight over wildlife protection and enables corruption by government bureaucrats, complicit foreign corporations and exploitative corporations to flourish. A recent CITES report notes that rebels in the DRC had been falsifying CITES documents to export chimpanzees to a neighboring country, where "it is suspected the animals were destined for the bushmeat trade." Further, genuine export permits were illegally altered to facilitate large-scale illicit international trade. "In one instance alone," CITES alleges, "permits authorizing the export of only two birds were used to export 1,000 birds to two different countries."

Caption: Even in the DRC's Okapi Wildlife Reserve, poachers don't spare the elusive okapi. (Wildlife Conservation Society/Bronx Zoo)

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