Winter 2015

Winter 2015 AWI Quarterly - Cover, Photo by Tirc83
Volume
64
Number
1
About the Cover

According to the latest “Annual Report Animal Usage by Fiscal Year” published by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), 891,161 animals were used in research in 2013 in the United States. This figure does not include mice, rats, birds, cold-blooded animals, and farm animals used in agricultural research­—none of whom are considered “animals” under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). The number of mice and rats used may be 20 times that number.

In the vast majority of cases, when the study ends, animals in research are euthanized. As discussed in the article on page 8 of this issue, an ethical obligation exists to employ methods that ensure such animals are spared from suffering.

Research protocols don’t always call for euthanasia, however. What happens then? In the article on page 9, AWI discusses a nascent but growing recognition by research institutions and affiliated professional organizations that animals who can be adopted out should be. More effort is needed to overcome obstacles and facilitate this process.

Photo by tirc83

Table of Contents

Animals in Laboratories

On December 8, 2014, Air Transport International (ATI) was cited by the USDA for violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA), after it transported 1,148 monkeys from China to Houston without providing food or water...
In December 2014, the USDA Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued its latest broadside against the inadequacy of the USDA’s enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). This sharply critical OIG report is the fourth...
The conclusion of a study almost always means euthanasia (from the Greek for “easy death”) for animals in research. As with all phases of research, there are moral, regulatory, and scientific imperatives to use the...
What happens to animals in research, after they are no longer needed for a study? In some cases, the research protocol does not call for euthanasia of the animals. Thus, rather than needlessly killing them,...

Companion Animals

New state-specific manuals compiled by attorneys working with AWI will help lawyers and advocates for domestic violence survivors to utilize protection orders on behalf of their clients’ companion animals.
The European Commission, the executive body of the European Union (EU), has conditionally banned horse meat imported from Mexico due to food safety concerns. The ban took effect on January 15, 2015.

Farm Animals

Using enforcement documents supplied by the USDA, AWI has identified the US poultry slaughter plants with the worst records on animal welfare. The survey covered violations of industry animal care guidelines over a five-month period...
Perdue Farms engages thousands of “contract farmers” each year to raise company-owned birds. Contract farmers are obligated to abide by Perdue’s animal-raising standards and any other specifications established by the company. The standards and specifications...
A January 19 article in The New York Times shined an extremely harsh light on the practices at the USDA’s Meat Animal Research Center (MARC) in Clay Center, Nebraska. The in-depth article described indefensible acts...

Marine Life

Each year, nearly 12 million cargo containers enter the United States via a network of 360 US seaports. Monitoring, tracking and inspecting such a huge number of shipments is a major challenge for those intent...
Numerous lists of species that are likely to go extinct within the next few years have been published. Front and center on all of them is the tiny, critically endangered porpoise known as the vaquita.
In November, Japan submitted its plans for a resumption of whaling in the Southern Ocean to the International Whaling Commission (IWC), despite the March 2014 ruling of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) that Japan’s...
In early December, AWI’s executive director, Susan Millward, attended meetings of the Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (the “Cartagena Convention”). Susan and AWI have long...
Sometimes, politics play a greater role than the merits of the issue when deciding whether legislation gets a fair hearing. In the case of AB 2140, the Orca Welfare and Safety Act introduced in the...
On November 12, SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc., issued its third quarter financial report. While the results were not as catastrophic as its second quarter report in August—when, after its revenue and attendance figures took a nosedive,...

Wildlife

The legal and illegal trade in monkeys is staggering. An Internet search using the phrase, “baby monkey for sale,” reveals thousands of ads for virtually every known primate species. For just a few hundred dollars,...
Coyotes are amazing opportunists. After humans nearly wiped out one of their only predators (wolves), coyotes spread into previously unoccupied areas of the country, like the Southeast. Many states are responding to growing populations by...
New Jersey has been free of steel-jaw leghold traps since 1985—one year after the state legislature banned the possession, use, manufacture, sale, importation, or transport of all leghold traps. AWI and other animal advocates had...
Viable wolverine populations require the survival of reproductive females. Managing potentially disruptive human activity where breeding females live is of paramount importance for successful reproduction and ultimately viable populations.
A wolf- and coyote-killing contest took place during the first week of January in Idaho. The second annual “Predator Hunting Contest and Fur Rendezvous” was sponsored by a group named Idaho for Wildlife, whose primary...
AWI would like to congratulate the 2014 Christine Stevens Wildlife Award recipients:

Government Affairs

Thanks to a flurry of activity at the end, the 113th Congress escaped the ignominy of being the least productive Congress in modern history. (It was the second-least productive, right behind the 112th.) Nonetheless, we...
The day after California’s law banning the production and sale of foie gras took effect on July 1, 2012, producers and restaurateurs sued to overturn it. They sought—but were denied—an injunction against the law as...

Legal

In November, AWI and allies filed a lawsuit against Mendocino County, California, alleging that the county failed to conduct the legally-required environmental review of its contract with the USDA’s Wildlife Services program. The contract authorizes...
In the summer of 2014, AWI and allies won an injunction banning all coyote hunting in the federally established recovery area for red wolves in eastern North Carolina. The injunction stems from a lawsuit against...

Reviews

The long history of brutal treatment of elephants in circuses is laid out in heart-wrenching detail in Last Chain on Billie: How One Extraordinary Elephant Escaped the Big Top. It is not a book for...
This thought-provoking documentary by Tom Weston takes viewers to the beautiful island of Bequia, one of several islands making up the country of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) in the southeastern Caribbean. There has...

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