Archive for the ‘World Wildlife Fund’ Tag

Global Tiger Day 2015   Leave a comment

gtd banner tony

International Tiger Day, or Global Tiger Day – created at the St. Petersburg Tiger Summit in 2010 – is celebrated on July 29th. Its’ goal is to raise world awareness for wild tigers and support for their conservation. Tigers are magnificent majestic big cats who deserve our utmost respect, protection and advocacy. We ‘d like to contribute to this important day by posting links to visit to learn more about wild tigers, captive tigers, and of course to show our love and support for Tony ~ who has himself raised awareness to the plight of captive tigers in the U.S.

WILD TIGERS

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 at these links:

http://wwf.panda.org/what_we_do/endangered_species/tigers/tiger_wwf_double_tiger_number/

http://tigerday.panda.org/

http://www.bornfree.org.uk/animals/tigers/

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/our-work/saving-the-last-tigers

tiger collageCAPTIVE U.S. TIGERS

Tony is 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. All states but for Kentucky, Ohio, and Washington exempt USDA licensees.”

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/big-cat-advocates-map

http://www.wildcatsanctuary.org/education/captive-wildlife-laws/

TAKE ACTION! Protect Tigers: Keep Them Out of American Backyards!

“Shockingly, there are about 5,000 captive tigers in the US—many more than in the wild. Almost all of the captive tigers are owned privately as pets—not by zoos or accredited institutions. Because there isn’t a system to keep track of the tigers, both the American public and the tigers are at risk.”

Please take action at the following link:
https://support.worldwildlife.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=797

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 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.

When the Big Cat and Public Safety Protection Act is reintroduced, actions to take will be posted, but in the meantime you can learn more about this legislation here:
http://bigcatrescue.org/big-cat-act/

TONY

We truly appreciate everyone’s dedication to Tony and support of his release to a reputable big cat sanctuary. Tony has become the “poster tiger” for captive U.S.  tigers and has raised awareness to this serious issue globally through social media.

A recent Dodo article about Tony’s 15th year at Tiger Truck Stop got tremendous response and support when Mr. Ricky Gervais tweeted it.

ricky g 7.24

We support ALDF’s continued efforts to secure Tony’s release to a reputable big cat sanctuary, three of which have standing offers of a home for him:

Big Cat Rescue in Tampa Florida ~ http://bigcatrescue.org/

The Wildcat Sanctuary in Sandstone MN ~ http://www.wildcatsanctuary.org/

The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg CO ~ http://www.wildanimalsanctuary.org/

For those of Tony’s friends who may be new to his story, we ask you to reference these articles from Tony’s legal reps The Animal Legal Defense Fund to learn more about the legal battle to “Free Tony The Tiger”:

http://aldf.org/cases-campaigns/timelines/tony-the-tiger/

http://aldf.org/cases-campaigns/features/tony-the-truck-stop-tiger/

Special Thanks to Animal Legal Defense Fund for their extraordinary representation of Tony and dedication to him. Please visit their site to learn more about them and their tremendous work to help animals through the legal system and support their Animal Bill of Rights.

  • Tony’s change.org petition asking the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to enforce the law remains open and has over 51,000 signatures:

http://www.change.org/petitions/ldwf-ensure-tony-the-tiger-is-released-to-a-reputable-sanctuary

Petitions provide a platform to keep people supportive, involved and updated as well as to demonstrate the interest and support Tony has worldwide.

  • Social media is a major component of the “Free Tony The Tiger” Campaign

Join ~ Follow ~ Share these social networking sites for Tony

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/FreeTonyTheTiger

Twitter:
@FreeTonyTiger http://twitter.com/#!/FreeTonyTiger
@TonyTiger2000 http://twitter.com/#!/TonyTiger2000

Instagram: http://instagram.com/tonythetruckstoptiger/#

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/tonytiger2000/

Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/FreeTonyTheTiger

WordPress: https://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/

If you visit Tony, document your visit with pictures and/or video and please share them. Send us a tweet via Twitter or email: roar4tony@yahoo.com

Please share this post and ROAR FOR TIGERS on GLOBAL TIGER DAY!

ROAR TONY WM

Global Tiger Day July 29 2013   Leave a comment

tiger day wwf 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.

WILD TIGERS

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:

http://worldwildlife.org/species/tiger

http://wwf.panda.org/what_we_do/endangered_species/tigers/

  • CAPTIVE U.S. TIGERS

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:

http://bigcatrescue.org/big-cats-and-public-safety-protection-hr-1998/

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/news/action-us-house-introduction-marks-important-milestone-big-cat-protection

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/our-work/tigers/big-cats-captivity

  • TAKE ACTION FOR BIG CATS!!

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/get-involved/tell-congress-protect-people-and-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:

https://freetonythetiger.wordpress.com/2013/07/01/new-jersey-residents-lets-roar-for-big-cats/

nyt tony

  • TONY NEEDS US!!

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:

http://www.change.org/petitions/ldwf-ensure-tony-the-tiger-is-released-to-a-reputable-sanctuary

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

ALDF Articles:

http://aldf.org/article.php?id=2053#

http://aldf.org/blog/victory-in-aldfs-tony-the-tiger-case/

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:

http://twitter.com/#!/FreeTonyTiger

http://twitter.com/#!/TonyTiger2000

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!

Ask Your Congressperson to Support H.R.4122 – The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act   Leave a comment

© Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources

Please ask your congressperson to support H.R.4122 – The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act would prohibit private possession of big cats except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed. 

Enter your zip code at this link: http://capwiz.com/bigcatrescue/issues/bills/?bill=61054001  for a fast easy way to voice your support of this bill and ask your congressperson to co-sponsor it. Please share the link. Thank You.

WWF – Latest News – Taking Tigers Out of American Backyards
Mar 01, 2012

Did you know that there are more tigers in American backyards than there are in the wild around the world?

Estimated at perhaps 5,000 tigers, they are found in:

  • backyards
  • urban apartments
  • sideshows
  • truck stops
  • private breeding facilities

For the past four years, WWF and TRAFFIC have raised the alarm on the lack of captive tiger regulation. Thanks to the “Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act” introduced by Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA) and Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) on February 29, 2012, the U.S. is now taking a step in the right direction.

“We welcome this important legislation because as the Zanesville incident showed, it’s critical for America to clear out captive big cats from our backyards,” says WWF’s Leigh Henry. “This is a matter not only of public safety, but also of preventing captive tigers from being fed into the massive illegal tiger trade driven by a booming black market for tiger products.”

If the bill passes, it will:

  • Prohibit private possession of big cats like tigers and lions except at highly-qualified facilities, like accredited zoos and sanctuaries, where they can be properly cared for and restrained.
  • Require any persons who currently possess big cats to register those animals with the USDA in order to keep the cats they currently own.
  • Outlaw the breeding of any big cat except at accredited zoos and research and educational institutions.

Violators could face stiff penalties including confiscation of animals, fines as much as $20,000 and up to five years in jail.

Senator John Kerry (D-MA) is working on introducing a companion bill in the Senate.

Learn more
Watch a video to learn how captive tigers impact wild tigers
Is your toilet paper linked to tiger habitat destruction?

http://www.worldwildlife.org/who/media/press/2012/WWFPresitem27118.html

Leonardo Networks The Good News!   1 comment

Thanks again to Leonardo DiCaprio for networking the news of Tony’s win in court http://www.aldf.org/article.php?id=1700 as the Animal Legal Defense Fund was victorious in their lawsuit against The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

Please support Tony’s “wild cousins” by visiting http://www.savetigersnow, a global campaign by World Wildlife Fund and Leonardo DiCaprio whose objective is to build political, financial and public support to double the number of wild tigers by 2022, the next Year of the Tiger.

There are an estimated 3,200 tigers left in the wild – in the USA there are approximately 5,000 privately owned tigers. View the videos below courtesy of The World Wildlife Fund and Big Cat Rescue – Tampa, Florida and for more information: http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/finder/tigers/captive-tigers/

Leonardo DiCaprio On Tony: “We Need To Act Now”   4 comments

Actor and activist Leonardo DiCaprio has voiced his disapproval of Tony’s exploitation at the truck stop by joining The Animal Legal Defense Fund and their campaign to relocate Tony be to an accredited big cat sanctuary.

Mr. DiCaprio tweeted for and  posted about Tony on his Facebook page.

Last year Mr. DiCaprio partnered with The World Wildlife Fund  to launch Save Tigers Now – a global campaign whose objective is to double the number of wild tigers by the next “Year of The Tiger” 2022. In 2010 Leonardo DiCaprio committed $1 million to World Wildlife Fund for urgent tiger conservation efforts through his Fund at the California Community Foundation. He also attended the 2010 Tiger Summit which took place in Russia.

With the support of Mr. DiCaprio,  Tony’s tragic story is communicated to more people and gains a stronger allegience for Tony and the efforts to give this tiger the home and life he deserves.

 

Thank you Mr. DiCaprio for caring about Tony and his critically endangered wild cousins.

You can also thank Mr. DiCaprio via Twitter http://twitter.com/#!/LeoDiCaprio , retweeting his own tweet for Tony, and posting a comment on the post he did for Tony on his Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/LeonardoDiCaprio

Thanks also to @TatisR  http://twitter.com/#!/TatisR for bringing Tony to the attention of Mr. DiCaprio and @ShamelessAngels http://twitter.com/#!/ShamelessAngels for bringing the post to our attention.

 

Petition Update: Please sign all petitions and continue to network the links for Tony.

http://tinyurl.com/tonyaldfpet  (25612)

http://tinyurl.com/tonyadlfpet2  (4324)

http://tinyurl.com/tonycare2pet  (4821)

From Animal Talkies: The Truck Stop Tiger Called Tony   4 comments

The following post is from radio broadcaster and musician Karishmeh Felfeli’s blog Animal Talkies. Karishmeh’s blog is dedicated to animal welfare and compassionate living. Reaching more people with Tony’s story is very important not only to gain more support for him but also to bring attention to the serious problem of  privately owned tigers in the United States.  

Thank you Karishmeh for your excellent blog post; it was wonderful to read your “personal experiences” with tigers and why Tony is important to you. Tony continues to capture the hearts of people worldwide who want to see him in a proper home and receiving the care he needs and deserves.

The Truck Stop Tiger Called Tony

By: Karishmeh Felfeli

The first time I saw a real, live tiger was at Peshwa Udyan Zoo, in Peshwa Park, near Saras Baug in Poona. I’m struggling to remember my first impressions, as I can’t have been more than three or four years old. I remember really enjoying the day at the Zoo – small and primitive though it was. I actually saw the magnificent tiger from the little children’s toy train that used to run through the park, up the little hill, overlooking the tiger enclosure at the very end. Straight out of some Rudyard Kipling sketch or essay. As I grew older, and returned to Peshwa Park Zoo a few more times, I felt more and more uneasy at the ridiculously tiny enclosure the tigers had to themselves. I still remember one tiger pacing up and down the narrow corridor in the 35 degrees celcius heat. Still, this was Poona, India and the animals “seemed” well looked after, so who was I to argue with that. 

K.M. Chinnappa

The second time I saw a tiger was much more memorable. I was in the Southern state of Karnataka, not yet 16, before my expedition to the Nepal Himalayas and was spending some time training (physically and mentally) for the forthcoming trip. It was the rainy season, the notorious Indian monsoon, and I was spending two weeks at the “Nagarhole National Park”, a beautiful, lush place renowned for its Tiger Conservation Project and one where it was still possible to sight a tiger. After spending the better part of a fortnight having the blood sucked out of me (quite literally) by the millions of leeches that plague the area in the rainy season (nothing can be done about this, except salting ones feet, shoes, socks and pulling out the leeches one by one!!), I finally saw the magnificent big cat in his natural surroundings. The man who made this possible was a terrifying, looming man dressed from head to toe in proper “park ranger” clothing, complete with a very large old style “shikari” gun. This chap was Mr K.M. Chinnnappa – tireless champion of tigers, and one who would be instrumental in preserving the tiger population at this beautiful place. (Ah – the internet, it wasn’t around when I met Chinnappa, but I see there’s more information about him online now – read here). I’ll be the first to admit that he scared me senseless, and spoke many times that he would “kill a poacher at sight, if one crossed his path.” Plus he seemed a dour sort of man, with little time for the giddy schoolgirl nonsense that seemed to fill my mind from time to time – I don’t think he cared less whether I went to Everest Base Camp, or jumped off the darned mountain without a harness! His mission was simple – educate young people about the wildlife (this included making me and others memorise all the botanical names of every species of flora and fauna that existed in Nagarhole) and protect the tigers.

When I saw the magnificent tiger (who I nicknamed Venkatesh, after the South Indian tough guy actor) at around 11 p.m. at night, I understood, for the first time, why Chinnappa was so crazy about protecting these beasts. A tiger was not supposed to be at a tiny cage/cell in Peshwa Park Zoo – he was supposed to be in places like Nagarhole – swaggering around as he would have done in the days of the Raj and Nizams, until some Lord, Nizam or Maharaja fired a bullet his way – it was not that long ago that there were so many tigers in India that hunting them was both a social activity and a sport that has thankfully become extinct (off topic – remember that great Bonzo tune Hunting Tigers out in Indiiiiah). And I could see why Chinnappa was so passionate about saving these beautiful creatures – and showing little sympathy to person who would poach a tiger for a few quid.

Someone else who is very passionate about saving the tigers is Hollywood star Leonardo di Caprio (his boyish face was plastered everywhere the year I went to Nagarhole – Titanic was just released, if I recall correctly). Here he is, talking to the BBC about why he is doing so much to save the tigers from extinction – and he has the support of the World Wildlife Fund. So it seems utterly baffling that in America, land of the “free” , a beautiful tiger (one of over a thousand) has been caged at a truck stop for over ten years, for passers-by to gawk at. When I first came across Tony’s Story, I honestly thought it was some sort of joke gone terribly wrong. Surely this sort of madness doesn’t still take place, in 21st Century America of all places. But no, this is actually very, very real. According to the Big Cat Rescue, and the FTTT campaign website

“Tony is a 10 year old Siberian/Bengal tiger used as a roadside attraction at Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete Louisiana. Tony is another example of how serious the problem is of private ownership of tigers in the United States where there are more privately owned tigers then there are left in the wild.
Tony’s owner, Michael Sandlin, has bought, sold, bred, and exhibited tigers for over 20 years. In 2003, because of violations and fines, Mr. Sandlin and the USDA made an agreement where 3 of the 4 tigers he owned, Toby, Khan and Rainbow, were sent to Tiger Haven in Kingston TN. The USDA reduced the fines and allowed Mr. Sandlin to keep one tiger, Tony.”

I was honestly at a loss for words when I saw the photos and watched the videos of Tony at his horrible truck stop abode in Louisiana. On the one hand, Leo di Caprio is trying to save tigers, and on the other hand, idiotic individuals who violate numerous laws are allowed to keep these beautiful creatures as “pets” – that too at a polluted, stressful roadside location which can’t be good for anyone, let alone a beautiful tiger.

Despite endless campaigning and petitioning  (40,000 plus signatures), and some fairly high-profile Twitter Retweeting (Leo di Caprio and actor Ian Somerhalder, a Louisiana native, animal lover, campaigner and founder of the IS Foundation ) in mid-December, officials from the LDWF decided to grant the permit renewal to Tony’s owner allowing him to continue exhibiting the ageing Tony as a road-side attraction at the truck stop throughout 2011. A sad, sad state of affairs. Is Tony’s fate any better than that of the tigers who are killed by poachers? I really doubt it. He’s fed and has a place to live, but after seeing how tigers live in the wild, or certainly even in tiger/big cat sanctuaries/nature reserves, a grotty truck stop is absolutely NO place for such a beautiful animal. Maybe when the tigers are no more, and we only have photos in history and wildlife books to remember them by, arrogant and idiotic people who subject these animals to such an existance will come to their senses. It makes me just as sad to see a tiger subject to such a life as Tony’s as it does to see a tiger hunted and killed for his skin, claws, teeth, whatever it is that people want from these beautiful creatures. Where are “power celebrities” like Ellen and Oprah when you need them? Just because Tony doesn’t have a book to sell or a movie to promote!

Still, I’m a firm believer in the power of education and information. Which is why this blog exists and which is why I chose to pursue a career as an educator and broadcaster – young people are often far more eloquent and compassionate than we give them credit for (there I go, sounding like my grandmother again…!). Here’s an example of a young voice speaking up for poor Tony and tigers all over America that are subject to such ridiculous conditions.

So if you’ve managed to get to the end of this blog post…thank you! And now, before you close out of this webpage, here’s how you can make your voice heard. And it will be heard – you must at least try, for Tony’s sake. I know I’m referring to him as if he’s my own cat, rather than a tiger, but I’m not about to start apologising for that now.

VISIT THE EXCELLENT WEBSITE TO FIND OUT HOW YOU CAN HELP FREE POOR TONY AND ENSURE HE SPENDS HIS TWILIGHT YEARS IN A SANCTUARY RATHER THAN A TRUCK STOP. 

Take Action – it won’t take more than a few minutes.
On Twitter: follow @freetonytiger
On Facebook (if you use the darned thing http://www.facebook.com/FreeTonyTheTiger)

Thank you.

Posted by Karishmeh at 2:02 PM
Direct link: http://animaltalkies.blogspot.com/2011/02/truck-stop-tiger-called-tony.html
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