How does a tiger caged at a Louisiana truck stop become the subject of a watercolor painting exhibited in a New Jersey library?
Excerpt from “A Captive Tiger Touches Hearts at Palisades Park Library”
PALISADES PARK —Newly mounted in the public library is a watercolor portrait of a 550-pound Bengal-Siberian tiger, his expressive yellow eyes obscured by a chain-link fence and metal bars. It’s based on a dreamlike scene that recently unfolded before Darlene De Santis, a supervisor at the library, when she pulled into a truck stop off Interstate 10 in Grosse Tete, La., a village of a few hundred people about 20 miles west of Baton Rouge. “It’s surreal,” she said. “There’s a cage with a tiger.”
Complete article: http://www.northjersey.com/news/a-captive-tiger-touches-hearts-at-palisades-park-library-1.1661721
Thank you: Steve Cavallo for his amazing work on this portrait of Tony, the Palisades Park Library and everyone who supported this project.
Tigers are magnificent majestic big cats who deserve our utmost respect, protection and advocacy. On Global Tiger Day we hope to raise awareness for tigers, both wild and captive and support efforts to help both.
Sadly there are only an estimated 3,200 of Tony’s “cousins” remaining in the wild, a decline of 97% since the turn of the century.
Six sub-species remain: Amur, Bengal, Sumatran, Indo-Chinese, Malayan, South China (functionally extinct – has not been sighted in the wild for more than 25 years); Three are extinct: Bali, Caspian and Javan.
Poaching, human-tiger conflict, loss of habitat and prey are the main threats to tigers. Learn more about wild tigers and how we can help support efforts to save them:
Tony is just one of the estimated 5,000 or more privately owned tigers in the United States and his plight has definitely raised awareness to this serious issue. Captive U.S. tigers are used in roadside zoos and attractions, photo ops and exhibitions, entertainment shows and circuses, pseudo-sanctuaries, bred for profit or are owned as “pets.” From IFAW: “Private possession of big cats is a legal patchwork: 30 states ban private possession, 14 states allow possession with a permit, and 6 states have absolutely no restrictions on private possession at all.” ( http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/big-cat-advocates-map )
- HR 1998 ~ THE BIG CATS AND PUBLIC SAFETY PROTECTION ACT
One of the most important ways we can help tigers like Tony and other captive big cats in the United States is to support HR 1998 ~ The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act. This bill would prohibit the private possession and breeding of captive big cats in the United States except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed. It would only allow breeding at accredited zoos, along with some research or educational institutions.
Learn more about this bill at these links:
- TAKE ACTION FOR BIG CATS!!
https://www.votervoice.net/BCR/Campaigns/30111/Respond (Take Action button on bottom of page)
A follow-up email, phone call or letter to your Congress Member can have a tremendous impact.
1. Go to http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
2. Enter your zip code to find out your Representative
3. Call Representative’s office and ask to speak to the staff member handling animal welfare issues
4. Tell that staff member to urge the Representative to co-sponsor H.R. 1998, the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act
- NEW JERSEY RESIDENTS!! Special Contact Information:
Everyone’s dedication to Tony is truly appreciated and we ask for your continued support. One of the best ways we can help Tony is to stay positive and focused on Tony’s release to a reputable big cat sanctuary and keep networking for him.
Sign & Share Tony’s Petition:
Keep Tony’s story active on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. Links to share:
ALDF Page For Tony: http://www.aldf.org/tony
Join Tony on Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/FreeTonyTheTiger
Free Tony The Tiger On WordPress: https://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/
Tony’s Story: https://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/tonys-story/
Follow Tony On Twitter:
Tony on Instagram: http://instagram.com/tonythetruckstoptiger/#
Tony on Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/tonytiger2000/
Tony On Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/FreeTonyTheTiger
Please share this post, check out the links, and take action for captive and wild tigers!
Special Request of New Jersey Residents: We are trying to gain co-sponsors for an important bill, HR 1998 ~ The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act which would ban the private ownership and breeding of captive big cats in the United States except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed. It would only allow breeding at accredited zoos, along with some research or educational institutions.
Track This Bill: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr1998
New Jersey Residents:
PLEASE contact your Congress Member and ask them for their co-sponsorship of HR 1998.
My Congressman, Bill Pascrell [D-NJ9] signed on as a co-sponsor on June 25, 2013. If he is also your Representative, please thank him for his support of HR 1998.
As of July 24, 2013 the following NJ Congressmen have signed on as co-sponsors; if any of them are your Representatives, please also thank them for their support:
Pascrell, Bill [D-NJ9]
(joined Jun 25, 2013)
Holt, Rush [D-NJ12]
(joined Jun 27, 2013)
Andrews, Robert “Rob” [D-NJ1]
(joined Jul 10, 2013)
Payne, Donald [D-NJ10]
(joined Jul 10, 2013)
Smith, Christopher “Chris” [R-NJ4]
(joined Jul 10, 2013)
LoBiondo, Frank [R-NJ2]
(joined Jul 18, 2013)
The following direct email addresses are for NEW JERSEY RESIDENTS ONLY. Please take a moment to send an email to your Congress Member asking for their co-sponsorship of HR 1998. There is a sample e-mail at the end of this post.
You can find who your Congress Member is here: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/hgb9O
For direct e-mails, contact your Congress Member’s legislative assistant: The email addresses are all in this format: email@example.com
Rep. Robert Andrews || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor July 10, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Adrienne Izzo, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen
Kathleen Hazlett, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
Rep. Scott Garrett
Katherine Bloodgood, Animal Welfare Legislative Assistant
*Rep. Rush Holt || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor June 27, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Chris Gaston, Legislative Director
Rep. Leonard Lance
Molly McDonnell, Animal Welfare Legislative Assistant.
Rep. Frank LoBiondo || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor July 18, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Jacob Schanzenbach, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
Rep. Frank Pallone
Brendan Hennessey, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
*Rep. Bill Pascrell || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor June 25, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Kyle Coleman, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor July 10, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Charles Makings, Environment
Rep. Jon Runyan
Jeff Brabant, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
Rep. Albio Sires
Kaylan Koszela, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
*Rep. Chris Smith || NOTE: Signed on as a co-sponsor July 10, 2013. Please thank him for his support.
Dave Kush, Animal Welfare Legislative Asst.
*Reps Holt, Pascrell and Smith were co-sponsors last session. This is a good point to mention in your correspondence.
Sample e-mail courtesy of Lions Tigers & Bears:
Dear Congressman [or Congresswoman] _________,
As a constituent concerned about improving the lives of tens of thousands of Big Cats in the United States, I’m writing to urge you to support and co-sponsor HR 1998, the “Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act.”
I strongly encourage you to do everything you can to help pass this critical legislation, which would prohibit the illegal trade of wildlife species and the private ownership or sale of exotic animals. Additionally, the bill would ban individuals from keeping the animals in poor living conditions and protect the public from dangerous situations.
I hope you will support and co-sponsor HR 1998. Thank you.
[Your Name & Address]
Non-Residents of New Jersey: Take Action Information (easy email contact form and ways to reach your representatives) also provided at: https://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/big-cats-public-safety-protection-act-hr-1998/
Please share with friends, family, etc. This is a crucial bill for big cats that needs our support! Thank You!
New Jersey Residents: Please Take Action TODAY For Tigers!! Vote is Thursday March 15th, 2012 for S945. Click the tiger's picture for info about S945 and how to contact your Senator.
NJ Residents Only!! Friends!! Please take a few minutes to call and ask your Senator to vote for S945 a bill to require tiger tracking and help tigers today! They vote on this bill tomorrow March 15th, 2012 so it is crucial to take action now! Please visit this action alert from Big Cat Rescue – Tampa Florida for all the information you need to contact your Senator TODAY!!
From Big Cat Rescue – Tampa Florida
Senate Votes Thursday – March 15, 2012 on Tigers – Support S945
S 945 is a bill that requires people who have tigers to report and register them.
Your senator is going to be voting on this bill Thursday March 15, so we need you to call them and say something like this, “Hi! I am in your district and I want you to vote FOR S945, a bill to require tiger owners to register their cats.”
That’s all you have to say, but it would also be helpful if you include that there should be no exceptions, other than AZA accredited zoos. The ZAA, a group that promotes private owners having tigers, is trying to get an exemption too, but that would render the law toothless.
The call won’t take even 3 minutes of your time, but can save thousands of tigers because other states will use NJ as a model if this passes.
Direct Link To This Alert: http://www.capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/callalert/index.tt?alertid=61094456&type=ST