Push to reinstate ban on circus animals performing on Gold Coast City Council-owned properties

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ANDREW POTTS, EXCLUSIVE, Gold Coast Bulletin; September 4, 2016 3:00pm

A CITY hall cage fight is brewing over plans to revive a ban on circuses with exotic animals performing within the city. Fur is expected to fly, with councillors set to defy the recommendations of bureaucrats and vote to ban circus animals on city controlled properties, nearly four years after such a ban was lifted.

A petition calling for the ban will go before the Community and Cultural Development committee on Thursday with council officers recommending that “no action be taken”. But committee head Bob La Castra said the advice was unacceptable and that he could not stand by and do nothing while animals “suffered”.

He urged ratepayers across the city to put pen to paper and lobby their elected representatives before Thursday’s vote.

Cr Bob La Castra is leading the charge to reinstate a ban on circus animals performing on the Gold Coast. Photo: Jerad Williams

“The views of those who believe this to be still acceptable are totally out of line and dated,” he said. “This should not be happening in our own backyard and we need those people who feel strongly about this to make their feelings known, so write to your councillors, speak out about it and fight this barbarity.

“By allowing these circuses on our land we are complicit in what they are doing and banning them would send a message that what they are doing is not right and that we are taking a stand.”

Police and Animal Rights campaigners outside Gold Coast Council Chambers protesting against the circus. Photo by Richard Gosling

If the ban is successful, circuses with exotic animals would still be allowed to perform on private property. A ban was first put into place in 2009 by the council with the backing of then-Mayor Ron Clarke. It was lifted in a January 2013 decision by the council in which Mayor Tom Tate used his casting vote to break a deadlock tie.

The Gold Coast Bulletin understands councillors on each sides of the argument are running the numbers to determine if the ban could potentially pass.

Both sides concede a vote could go either way.

But Southport councillor Dawn Crichlow, an ardent supporter of circuses, said she would fight the ban tooth and nail and declared the opposing argument to be “crap”.

Cr Dawn Crichlow with Massai the Lion. Pic Jono Searle.

“The kids want the circuses and I will fight all the way because it is a matter which is close to my heart and those of many others,” she said. “I am sick of the noisy minority coming up with all this crap. “I cannot believe this women condones & thinks it’s ok for children to see abused & tortured animals, just for their pleasure….condoning this just lets kids think that it is ok to be cruel to animals for the sake of entertainment????   By allowing circuses to carry on using animals is agreeing with the torturous training these poor young animals have to endure. Would it be ok to watch a double human act if you knew that one-half of the act was constantly being physically abused & tortured; just for entertainment???? NO, I DON’T THINK SO!!! ANYONE THAT DOES THINK ITS OK…WELL, I THINK THEY NEED TO BE SEEKING PROFESSIONAL  HELP”

RSCPA chief executive Mark Townend called on the council to “move with the times” and end the mistreatment of exotic animals.

“I would hope the council gets into 2016 thinking because realistically circus animals are very 1970s,” he said. “There are great circus which do not put animals through these ridiculous things which are not in their natural behaviour. “I appeal to the council to move with the times because we can have a successful circus without putting animals through such treachery.”

The petition calling for the ban to be reinstated was submitted to the council in March by then-Robina councillor Jan Grew in the final act of her 22 year political career.

More than 45 councils across Australia have exotic animal bans in place. Both City of Melbourne and Penrith both voted to introduce their own boycotts this year. Protesters are expected to attend Thursday’s council committee meeting and security will be on hand.

News Link: http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/lifestyle/pets-and-wildlife/push-on-to-reinstate-ban-on-circus-animals-performing-on-gold-coast-city-councilowned-properties/news-story/977c58756cfc65467f2269bf8bac94f3

“See how animals are really trained to perform for your entertainment!! Then ask yourself; is this fair on the animals? Do you enjoy knowing they have been hurt for you entertainment????”

“The Circus, where animals are miserable & go insane; confined to metal cages when not being abused & are trained through fear; fear of being whipped, hit with objects, tied by the neck i.e tortured, etc. etc.”

(Anyone who condones this…will be classed as an animal abuser through my eyes)

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Brian Blessed Gets Behind Campaign To Ban Wild Animal Circuses

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February 20, 2015

Brian Blessed: Profile

As the political saga surrounding the promised ban on wild animals in circuses in the UK continues, legendary actor Brian Blessed has urged the government to “end this circus madness” and finally legislate to ban such acts.

The ‘Flash Gordon’ star’s call for action comes as Animal Defenders International (ADI) reveals that the only and much criticised lion and tiger circus act will not be touring Britain this year.

Brian Blessed said “I am deeply opposed to the use of wild animals in circuses and have been working with Animal Defenders International to oppose such acts for many years. Despite repeated promises from the Government, we are still waiting for the law to pass and the animals are continuing to suffer. Please end this circus madness.”

Brian Blessed is among a string of high profile supporters of ADI’s campaign to ‘Stop Circus Suffering’ in Britain which includes Ricky Gervais, Sir Roger Moore, Brian May,Moby, Imelda Staunton, Eddie Izzard, Twiggy, Annette Crosbie, Sir Paul McCartneyand Dame Judi Dench.

Back in 2011, Brian Blessed made a similar plea following ADI’s shocking exposérevealing the terrible abuse inflicted on Anne, Britain’s last circus elephant. The actor joined the organisation and a delegation of MPs to present a letter to the Prime Minister calling for a ban. At the time Blessed stated, “now is the time for the government to legislate and put a stop, once and for all, to the draconian and humiliating spectacle of wild animals in circuses.”

As a result of changing attitudes and greater awareness of how circus animals are kept, trained and treated following investigations by organisations such as ADI, just two circuses in Britain currently tour with wild animals.

ADI can reveal that Thomas Chipperfield, a relative of the notorious Mary Chipperfield who was prosecuted for animal cruelty following an ADI investigation, who presents the only lion and tiger circus act in Britain, will not be touring with a circus this year. The act featured in Peter Jolly’s Circus last year, attracting widespread criticism and local protests.

Whilst in the circus and at their present overwintering location in Scotland, ADIdocumented how Chipperfield’s lions and tigers exhibited abnormal repetitive behaviour – not seen in the wild but commonly observed in circuses – indicating compromised welfare. Seeing the footage, vets Marc Abraham and Simon Adams said “Big cats are never meant to live like this” and “the limited space available in a travelling circus is unsuitable to big cats”. Although the animals will not be touring, they will likely remain in their temporary, confined living quarters.

ADI President Jan Creamer said, “While the government fails to take action, the suffering of wild animals in circuses will continue and it must take full responsibility. It is time to pass the ban that has long been promised to the public and the animals.”

Little progress has been made since the Government announced it would ban the use of wild animals in circuses in 2012, leading Jim Fitzpatrick MP to introduce a bill. Despite having cross-party support, Christchurch MP Christopher Chope has blocked the backbench bill on seven occasions. The bill will have its next second reading on Friday 27 February.

Whilst Britain stalls on progressing the ban, 30 countries have introduced laws prohibiting animals in circuses. ADI is working with authorities to rescue animals from circuses following wild animal circus bans in Peru and Colombia, and is currently caring for 30 lions and over 20 other animals. The organisation is seeking donations to complete its groundbreaking rescue mission ‘Operation Spirit of Freedom’.

News Link:https://www.looktothestars.org/news/13286-brian-blessed-gets-behind-campaign-to-ban-wild-animal-circuses

Northen Ireland; Circus Ban On Council Land

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Circuses which use wild animals in their acts could soon be banned from bringing their shows to council land in Antrim and Newtownabbey.

On Tuesday, February 10, Antrim and Newtownabbey District Council’s Policy Resources & Service Convergence Committee agreed to ban such circuses from using council-owned land.

DUP Councillor Phillip Brett proposed the motion: “That this council recognises that it is inherently cruel and unjustifiable for circuses to use wild animals to perform tricks or engage in behaviour that they otherwise would not do in the absence of coercion, and adopts a policy to prohibit circuses including wild animals from using council owned property.”

The motion was seconded by Councillor Thomas Hogg and agreed by members.

The committee’s decision still has to be ratified when the full council meets on February 26 at Mossley Mill.

Councillor Brett said that it will be up to the council to decide whether or not circuses which use horses and dogs in their shows will be subject to the ban, or just those which use exotic animals such as lions, tigers and elephants.

News Link:http://www.antrimtimes.co.uk/news/local-news/circus-ban-on-council-land-1-6592778

Graphic Video: California Towns Ban Bullhooks For Elephants

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 “Seriously, if you were caught using a bullhook, stick or broom etc. on a dog, cat or horse etc. whipping or poking it until it bleeds; I’m sure, you would be charged with animal abuse; & quite rightly so! These bullhooks are used to control elephants; via pain, just as various other weapons are used for the rest of the circus animals! Elephants may have thick skin, but did you know they can feel a fly land on them?? So how do you think a bullhook feels to an elephant when it’s used aggressively by an impatient trainer or handlers mucking out stalls etc. I bet it hurts like hell! Bullhooks are used to keep circus elephants in check, by tugging on sensitive parts of the elephant like their ear’s & gouging at their legs to make them perform unnatural tricks for the paying audience! Elephants were not made to entertain humans, which is why they are forced by the bullhook & electric prods (verified on undercover surveillance) to entertain! How else would one get an elephant to lift off front or rear feet, walk around a big ball with one foot on it, the other turning it, or how about getting them to do a handstand; using their trunks as a balancing aid? I’m pretty sure they don’t conform to words alone, or snacks! These elephants are performing stunts in such a way as they would never, in the wild; their bodies are simply not made to do balancing acts, it’s so unnatural for them to even consider doing tricks…but a bullhook used by a human, aimed at the right place, makes it much easier to get the job done, by causing pain. They’re not dogs who can learn a trick within half an hour using treats alone. Plus the tricks elephants are forced to do; adds injuries to their ailments later in life!!!bull hook

“Those that intentionally inflict pain & suffering & enjoy carrying out their sickening hold on animals, are not worthy of being called animal trainers or handlers etc.; they are good for one thing; picking up the mess after said animal has been to the toilet!! If they can yank an elephant round, how do the treat their family pets? They shouldn’t be or in the care of any animal; if they don’t mind whacking an elephant around its body, for simply getting a verbal command right!! Torture devices can be used right under the noses of the people, paying to watch the elephants or other animals at the circus; paying customers have no idea the animals are suffering; whilst performing ridiculous tricks! Innocent looking walking sticks can be used to enforce pain, yet they look totally harmless to the distanced crowd! However, they are anything but innocent, a simple walking stick can be turned into a torture device used on any animals whilst performing etc. Props like this can have spiked nails in one end that the trainers uses to control the animals! Those watching the performance wouldn’t be able to see nails in sticks etc…they are simply too far away; but it still looks so innocent to those watching!”

“To be honest I’m astounded that more elephants haven’t attacked, killed their trainers or gone on a rampage; like several have over the years, due to the constant abuse from humans carrying  bullhooks or other items, such as a walking cane, filled with spiked nails, that when touched, cause pain etc! Could it be that elephants who were caught in the wild, remember the heartache of being taken from family & the torture chamber called the Phajaan? I’m sure those that were caught wild will never ever forget the pain of being taken from its mother & family! But it’s the Phajaan, the poor little elephant will remember forever, because that was home where he was a victim to horrendous abuse! The Phajaan is where all wild caught small elephants are horrifically tortured daily; used for one reason other than a horror chamber…it breaks the spirit of the elephant!

 Once they are in the Phajaan they can’t turn or even lay down; heavy duty rope or chains cause terrible suffering & injuries! Each foot is tied down so tightly to stop them having any chance of hurting the people who are torturing them. Rope is tied around the neck & body so there is no way they can escape! Food & water is used as a training tool too (it still is being used today) the elephants get neither if they haven’t complied with the human commands being barked at them all day for weeks or months! The elephant will stay tied in the phajaan, being whipped, poked & prodded daily to the point of bleeding from  wounds!! It stops, only when & depending on how quickly the humans can break the little elephants spirit! That is what the phajaan is made for…to literally break the elephant down, both physically & mentally, until it has no fight left in it & the elephant starts to obey the human commands!! Captured young, these elephants have to be submissive before they can be trained for log work or to be sent somewhere to be trained as a circus elephant! Nobody will pay for an elephant if it will not obey human commands. The Phajaan is used as a medieval cage of wood & it succeeds in breaking the most hardened spirit of an elephant…over time the elephant just won’t be able to stand the beatings or go on without water or food; he must submit to stop the pain & he realises; he is now a slave to humans!”

“I have a theory about why most captured elephants try not to retaliate after a beating with a bullhook etc. They say elephants have fantastic memories…well perhaps it’s the thought of being taken back to that torture chamber, where the elephants endured terrible suffering & beatings…in the Phajaan; at the hands of humans!! The horror of that place must be tattooed in the memory of every elephant that suffered there. The elephants don’t understand they will never return to that horrible place if they don’t conform. The Phajaan & the humans, who mentally & physically broke them using such weapons like the bullhooks, will stay with the elephants forever! They may be in a different place, but it is still the humans who control them! Do the elephants even know their own power & strength against humans; probably not, because it was forced out of them in the Phajaan? They only know that humans are the leaders & with their torture tools, can still physically beat & hurt the elephants, if they don’t comply!!”

“Could fear alone stop the elephants from causing harm to their trainers or owners, after all, thats all the elephants know about humans; how much pain they can cause! When they are shipped off to do other work, where all elephants know of humans is they are to be feared & must be obeyed in order not to receive punishment, I wonder if the new elephant looks at the other elephants old wounds & realises; that they too came through the same cruel path!  So do they actually behave & perform out of fear? Fear of going back to the Phajaan perhaps ensures most elephants comply! What do you think?”

“Please watch the video below, to help understand what elephants endure through life. A circus elephant could have come through the same route; tortured & abused in the Phajaan, their spirits forever broken at the hands of humans!”

By Kristin J. Bender Associated Press

OAKLAND, Calif.The circus will stop coming to Oakland in a few years after a tool used by elephant handlers was banned in the city.

The Oakland City Council earlier this week unanimously approved an ordinance outlawing bullhooks. The instrument resembles a fireplace poker, with a sharp hook on one end that is used by trainers to control the animals. 

Tom Rider, a former circus elephant trainer, shows a bullhook that is used by elephant trainers. The Oakland, Calif., City Council earlier this week unanimously approved an ordinance outlawing bullhooks, an instrument resembling a fireplace poker with a sharp hook on one end that is used by trainers to control the animals. Oakland is now the second city in California, after Los Angeles, to ban the use of a bullhooks. File photo

Oakland is now the second California city, after Los Angeles, to ban the use of a bullhooks. The circus will stop performing in Los Angeles in summer 2016. The Oakland ban takes effect in 2017.

“(That) will be the last time we will be in Oakland because we can’t perform without the elephants,” said Stephen Payne, spokesman for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.

But the circus is still holding out hope about having future performances in Oakland. “We may see if the Oakland City Council wants to reconsider,” he said. Payne said the move is a loss for people who enjoy the circus. An estimated 30,000 people attended the Oakland circus over six days last summer, he said.

“Please Note Viewer Discretion advised! “Breaking the spirit of a young wild elephant” to be used to pull logs, work in the tourist industry or sold onto circuses”

“To Truly understand how an elephant’s spirit is broken & make them afraid of man…you really should watch this video”

Published on 8 Mar 2012

Here are the images of the training of wild elephants that are caught for the tourist trade. Please remind yourself and tell others that by visiting elephant camps you are supporting this!

The Oakland Zoo and animal rights activists supported the ordinance, saying bullhooks are cruel and inhumane. Other U.S. cities to ban bullhooks include Miami Beach, Florida.

Proponents say the tool is designed to give trainers dominance over elephants and does not hurt or harm the animal. “A lot of the information that was presented to the Oakland City Council by the proponents was designed to distort our animal care,” Payne said.

Oakland Zoo Chief Executive Officer Joel Parrott said the practice hearkens back to the turn of the 20th century and has no place in modern times.

“If I suggested using a bullhook on giraffes to get them through gates or to stab tigers to get them to do what I want them to do, everybody would react,” Parrott said. “The only reason it’s acceptable is we’ve grown used to it with the elephants.”

News Link:-http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20141219/business/141218357/

“Quote links below; read the & find out something you never knew about elephants”         

                                                                                                     The Sense of Touch

Despite its thickness, an elephant’s skin is very sensitive, to the point where it can feel a fly land on its back. Surprisingly, it is also sensitive to the sun, and baby elephants are even known to sunburn. The species’ notorious love for mud and baths helps alleviate both of these problems.

If you liked this article and the Bonus Facts below, you might also enjoy:

Bonus Elephant Facts

  • Elephants can be either “right-handed” or “left-handed,” and this is often shown by greater wear on one tusk as opposed to the other. Dogs and Cats are also often right or left “handed”.
  • Unlike the rhinoceros, whose horn is made of hair-like keratin, elephant tusks are actually overgrown incisors. Incredibly long, at least one-third of an elephant’s tusk is inside the animal’s head, outside of view. The outside, ivory part of the tusk is, like its other teeth, comprised of dentine surrounded by a layer of enamel. An elephant’s tusks never stop growing.
  • The heaviest tusks recorded weigh about 220 pounds per tusk, while the longest ever discovered were 11 feet long! Tusks today are generally much smaller due to the ivory trade and poaching keeping them from reaching such mammoth sizes.
  • In a rare example of unanimity, the whole world banned the trade in ivory in 1989 with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). In the decade preceding the agreement, more than half of Africa’s elephants had been killed in order to harvest the ivory, and today, poaching continues. In fact, in 2011, only a portion of the largest seizures collected found in excess of 50 thousand pounds of poached ivory. To combat this, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) had proposed regulations in February 2014 that would have placed “a near-total ban on anything made with ivory moving in and out of the U.S.” However, the sweeping regulation had many concerned that it would inhibit the transportation of “old ivory,” such as that found in antique pieces of art and musical instruments. After a public outcry, particularly from concert musicians who often need to travel with their antique, ivory-fitted instruments to perform, FWS carved out an exception in May 2014.
  • Today there are somewhere between 400,000 and 600,000 African elephants remaining, and, unless things change, they are predicted to become locally extinct within 50 years

News Link with more interesting facts about elephants:http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2014/07/skin-african-elephant/

Law to ban wild animals in UK circuses being blocked by three Tory MPs

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“Seriously, these idiots blocking the ban need to go undercover to see the real truth! What elephant in the wild would stand on its head or lion jump through fire…FFS…Watch the video below…if you love your pets, would you let them be treated this way??? There is no difference, all animals are sentient, they feel most emotions humans do; yet they are treated like inanimate objects. their only use is to perform for entertainment, to earn money for their captors!!”

By  Friday 5 December 2014

UK lags behind Bolivia and Bosnia in banning the use of wild animals, such as lions, tigers, zebras and camels, in travelling circuses

‘The days of transporting wild animals in the back of lorries around towns and cities to show them off to people are long gone … Britain should join the 21st century.’ Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

A new law to ban the use of wild animals in circuses is being repeatedly blocked by a trio of Tory backbenchers, despite the personal support of David Cameron, the government, Labour and over 90% of the British public.

The bill was blocked for the seventh time on Friday afternoon, a move its supporters called a “travesty” and an “outrage”. Dozens of lions, tigers, zebras and camels are still used in travelling circuses and in 2012 the government pledged to outlaw what Cameron called the “outdated practice”. But despitepublishing the draft law in 2013, it has since failed to pass it.

Former environment minister Jim Fitzpatrick, a Labour MP, took the government’s bill and presented it as a private members bill, with support from MPs from all main parties. But it has been repeatedly blocked by circus-supporter Andrew Rosindell, along with Christopher Chope and Philip Davies, all Conservative MPs.

“It is very much a matter of a tiny number of Tory backwoodsmen preventing this from happening,” Fitzpatrick told the Guardian. “It is frustrating, but we are keeping the issue alive – it won’t go away.”

“The days of transporting wild animals in the back of lorries around towns and cities to show them off to people are long gone,” he said, noting that many nations, from Bosnia to Bolivia, already have bans and that safari parks and zoos provided alternatives. “We think Britain should join the 21st century.”

“For those that think animals are trained with loving hands…WATCH THIS…then tell me; do you really think they enjoy this life????

 Irrespective of  when this undercover video was taken, the principles for any animals still in circuses are the same; fear. neglect, torment & ridicule!!”

(Uploaded on 8 Dec 2008

The Truth About The Treatment of Animals In Circuses Filmed by Animal Defenders International, this video lifts the lid on the use and abuse of animals in entertainment. • the violence used to train and control the animals • the small cages, temporary pens, and chains the animals live and die in • the long journeys • the unnatural conditions • the animals driven out of their minds by boredom and deprivation)

“It is a travesty that the actions of just three MPs are preventing legislation to end animal suffering from being passed,” said Jan Creamer, president of Animal Defenders International. In April, Cameron told ADI: “Yes, we are going to do it.”

A spokeswoman for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said the government bill would be passed “when parliamentary time allows”. However, the current parliamentary programme has the smallest number of bills for 20 years. Fitzpatrick said there clearly was time and he had “no idea” why ministers will not fulfil their pledge.

The British Veterinary Association backs the ban, stating: “The welfare needs of wild animals cannot be met within a travelling circus, in terms of housing or being able to express normal behaviour.” The RSPCA said: “Cramped and bare temporary housing, forced training and performance, loud noises and crowds of people are often unavoidable realities for the animals.”

But Rosindell, who has blocked the bill twice said: “The circus is a Great British institution, which has proved that it has the high standards of welfare which are rightly expected of it, and I strongly believe that it deserves to be defended against the propaganda and exaggerations.”

He added: “None have been taken from their natural habitat; all are from several generations of animals born in captivity. I believe it would be much more cruel to remove them from the life they have always known in living and performing with their loving owners in the environment they are accustomed to.”

Creamer said: “By blocking the bill they are defying not only the wishes of their own party and their constituents, but also the British public and Parliament. There is also clearly time to pass a ban and the government needs to act now.” A 2010 government consultation found 94% of the British public supported a ban on wild animal acts.

Maria Eagle, Labour’s shadow environment secretary, said: “The British public will be outraged that, when given the opportunity, a determined group of Tories have repeatedly dug their heels in. The next Labour government will ban wild animals in circuses.”

Fitzpatrick said: “I think a ban on wild animals will come in sooner rather than later, but I have severe reservations about whether we get it in before the election next May.”

News Link:-http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/dec/05/law-to-ban-wild-animals-in-uk-circuses-being-blocked-by-three-tory-mps

Like if you agree, wild animals DO NOT belong in circuses!: “Animal circuses”: Cruel entertainment or a dying art?”

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“I understand, there may be some circuses who do put the animals needs first; I’m not saying all circuses are cruel to their animals! But I still don’t think wild animals should be in cages, travelling from town to town; to perform unnatural tricks, to the paying public; no matter how well they are cared for. The circuses may very well maintain their animals are well fed & cared for, that’s all well & good. But no pitched circus can provide its animals with a likeness to the animals own living habitats. It would be impossible for circuses to provide lions or tigers with rocks, caves, trees, brush or access to a lake, for tigers & other animals that love the water. These are the basics, so the animals can exhibit their natural behaviour; especially when they are constantly on the move! The council floor space granted to the circuses probably just about holds all the wagons carrying the animals, along with all the trucks needed to erect the circus tents, caravans & other stalls etc. So there is little room for the animals between performances; to act in a natural way!

Horses & zebra love to run round etc. but In the News Link below, it says that ponies are tethered to the circus tents, camels are tethered in fields, with horses in temporary stables & makeshift paddocks; animals can not express their natural instincts when denied their normal living habitats! Where do the tigers or lions go when not performing; tigers love to swim! Or do they just stay in their beast wagons? I’ve seen enough evidence to convince me that circus animals are not happy animals! They are denied their basic instincts, they are not meant to perform or stay in holding cells in between shows. As such many animals exhibit repetitive stereotypical behaviour; due to their lifestyles, they would never do it in the wild! So I still say wild animals do not belong in any type of exhibit where they are forced to perform…it’s wrong & about time our Government got off their backsides & implemented a BAN like they promised! .”

POST By Jonathan Brown 26/9/2014 http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/ 

Changing times: With a legal ban on the use of wild animal acts in UK circuses impending, Jonathan Brown goes behind the scenes at one of only two left in the UK to get to the heart of the debate.

Petra Jackson pictured with Zebedee the zebra at Circus Mondao, in Tingley, Leeds. Picture by Simon Hulme

Petra Jackson pictured with Zebedee the zebra at Circus Mondao, in Tingley, Leeds. Picture by Simon Hulme

Behind the big top at Circus Mondao – one of only two licensed animal circuses in the UK – zebras, camels and reindeer are roaming to the disgust of animal rights campaigners.

At its current resting place at Thorpe Lane, Tingley, there are Shetland ponies tethered to the circus tent, camels tethered in the fields, while its seven horses are split between airy temporary stables and makeshift paddocks to keep them separated from the freely wandering elderly zebra ‘Zebedee’.

By any means it’s a strange, if not slightly unnatural, sight to see at fields between Leeds and Wakefield nevertheless the animals seem contented and oblivious to the legal and moral storm that surrounds Circus Mondao’s very existence.

Next month draft legislation to enforce an outright ban on the use of wild animals in circuses, which could eventually come into force by December 2015, will have its crucial second reading amid increasing public protests.

Touring the circus on its eighth visit to rural Tingley in as many years, a vast convoy of 17 trucks, cars and caravans hauled around the country by a 30-strong workforce nine months of the year is gearing up for its next show.

We’re led around the site by veteran ringmistress Petra Jackson as Romanian gymnasts warm up in the big top and the animals are given time to relax outside. She is immediately on the defensive. “Have a look at where our animals live – you can’t believe everything you read on the internet,” she said. “It’s very hard to get our voice across. They are not kept in a shoebox under the bed, they’re grazing freely with fresh food and fresh water.”

It’s not surprising that she is on her guard. Life on the road with a modern day animal circus consists of a relentless stream of protests and media criticism outside of daily performances and weekly travel.

But having entered circus life aged 16 to train and care for dogs and ponies, Ms Jackson is used to the pressure. She has spent 22 years in the industry and joined Circus Mondao nine years ago.

Forthright in her view that all her animals live fulfilling lives, she is adamant that traditional circus is by no means the “Victorian relic” campaigners suggest.

“The people who come and see the show don’t say it’s outdated – it’s not what the general public are saying,” she said.

“The Great British public want to be able to make their own decision about what they want to see. If they didn’t want to see animals perform in the circus they wouldn’t come to see us and we would be out of business.” “The public did make their own decision about animals in circuses, according to a report by Born Free Foundation and RSPCA (2006).   “See Link To PDF – Its time Parliament changed it’s act;Below”

 98.9% of readers of the Sunday Mirror newspaper who expressed a view thought that the UK’s only remaining circus elephant (see section 6.1 – UK Circus elephant) should retire (2005). 

The Environment Food and Rural Affairs Committee The Environment,Food and Rural Affairs Committee (EFRA) is a cross-party committee appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure,administration,and policy of the Department for Environment,Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and its associated bodies. In its examination of the Animal Welfare Bill,the Committee has recommended that: In addition,to date (11/01/06),92 Members of Parliament have signed Early Day Motion No.468 recognising that the circus environment cannot provide for the needs of wild animals. The use of wild animals in circuses be prohibited The use of all other performing animals in circuses,television,theatre,films,advertising etc.be licensed “See Link To PDF – Its time Parliament changed it’s act;Below”

In spite of her defiance, the evidence suggests the days of UK animal circus acts are numbered – even aside from the looming change in the law.

From 1998/9 the number of circuses practicing with wild animals in the UK fell from 20 to four in just five years, with dwindling audiences and high-profile animal cruelty cases contributing to the fact that only two such circuses exist today.

Circus Mondao, with its collection of over 30 mainly grazing stock, and Peter Jolly’s Circus, which features five lions and tigers, have rarely been out of the headlines as a result.

And having worked with big cats herself, Ms Jackson is hardly damning of their use. “The natural environment out there isn’t what it used to be with deforestation and there is so much more poaching and hunting going on,” she said. “People don’t realise they (big cats) relax a lot in the daytime and what they do in the circus is no different to what they do in the wild – they jump and leap from one rock to another, it’s just a trained movement.

She argues that most circus animals are “captive bred” and are used to a circus routine which causes them no harm, meaning animals such as Mondao’s zebra and one of its mules have easily outlasted their predicted life expectancies.

“The tide of opinion is against us. There’s no scientific evidence against us. We’ve been inspected by the Government, they have licensed us and all the inspections that have happened previously didn’t find anything wrong with the animals in the circus, it’s just that the animal rights people don’t think it’s right to have them in captivity.”

5.3 Abnormal behaviour
It is known that wild animals in captivity often display abnormal behaviour,with a particular problem being repetitive, seemingly functionless actions referred to as stereotypic behaviour. Stereotypic behaviour may be the result of frustrated needs,or be a coping mechanism developed in a current or previous inadequate or stressful environment,and the presence of stereotypic behaviour is generally acknowledged to be an indicator of current or previous poor welfare. Evidence exists for stereotypic behaviour being significant in circus animals (e.g.Friend & Parker 1999,Gruber 2000,Krawczel et al.2005, Schmid 1995),and this is supported by anecdotal evidence and video footage. Indeed,legislation in New Zealand attempts to tackle the problem,stating that animals displaying continuous signs of distress must not be held or used in circuses. Presence of stereotypic behaviour in some species may serve as partial evidence that circuses are unable to meet the needs of wild animals.  “See Link To PDF – Its time Parliament changed it’s act;Below”

Nationwide around 200 local authorities, including Leeds City Council, have pre-empted a wider ban by refusing to warrant animal circuses using council-owned land.

The arrival of Circus Mondao and Peter Jolly’s Circus in West Yorkshire last year attracted the attention of protestors in Otley and Queensbury, Bradford, last year, and Circus Mondao’s visits to Thornton, Calverley and Tingley so far have attracted similar responses from the likes of Leeds Animal Protection and Bradford and Calderdale Animal Friends.

Meanwhile Animal Defenders International has called on residents to avoid the circus as wild animal acts are an “outdated practice which is overwhelmingly opposed by the public”.

Jan Creamer, president of ADI, said: “Most people are now aware of the terrible suffering of wild animals in circuses and shun such acts. A national ban has been promised but, until it is brought in, these animals are forced to perform silly tricks and endure conditions which deny them their natural behaviours. We urge local people not to support circus suffering.”

Recent high profile cases of mistreatment have scarred the perception of animal circuses for many. Circus owner Bobby Roberts was given a three-year conditional discharge in 2012 for mistreating the UK’s last circus elephant. The conviction came after a groom was secretly filmed striking the 58-year-old elephant, called Anne, with a pitchfork in early 2011.

Nevertheless animal cruelty and circuses are not necessarily intertwined. Both remaining UK animal circuses are regularly vetted and have been licensed by DEFRA.

In fact after publishing the Wild Animals in Circuses Report which looks set to bring about the ban on wild animal acts, committee chair Anne McIntosh MP said “there is no overwhelming welfare case for a ban on wild animals in travelling circuses”, stating there are already laws in place to deal with welfare abuse.

But whether wild animal acts are at all necessary or viable remains debatable. Either way, the impending ban looks set to spell the end of a 150-year-old industry.

Ms Jackson added: “We don’t know what’s going to happen, that’s very true. We don’t think like to think about it.”

HISTORY OF ANIMAL CIRCUSES IS CHEQUERED

  • The use of animals in the circus dates back around a century and a half.
  • Prior to travelling circuses and the advent of public zoos, those wanting to lay their eyes on exotic wild animals would head to fairs.
  • Before animals were exhibited, travelling shows were likely to be exhibiting people with physical abnormalities, regarded at the time as ‘freaks of nature’.
  • From the 19th Century animals were taken on tour as displays of exotic creatures before they were combined with traditional circus shows – the first true animal acts involved horses.
  • US circus performer Isaac Van Amburgh is recognised as the first wild animal trainer in circus history, having entered a cage with several big cats as early as 1833.
  • Equestrian circus became a world phenomenon during the 1800s, with travelling circuses pitching up American-style big top tents from the mid 1830s.
  • In Europe, the travelling circus and menagerie reached its peak between the two world wars.
  • But while exotic animals once drew large crowds, the animal rights movements of the 1960s onwards pressured circuses to re-think their links with animals.
  • Shows began to present circus in a more artistic light, while many circuses began to end or amend their association with animal acts.
  • Although not a travelling circus, German-American duo Siegfried & Roy who performed with white lions and tigers in Las Vegas ended their 13-year stage careers after Roy was attacked and nearly killed by a seven-year-old male tiger named Montecore in 2003.
  • Such high profile accidents were added to by cases of ill treatment among some of the more unscrupulous circuses and began to shape perceptions.

News Link:-http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/latest-news/top-stories/animal-circuses-cruel-entertainment-or-a-dying-art-1-6862167

 Public Opinion.
Recent decades have seen increasing public exposure to media such as television documentaries and to foreign travel, allowing people the opportunity to observe either directly or indirectly animals in the wild, their natural behaviour and habitats. In addition, examples of animal cruelty such as those uncovered during the investigation and successful prosecution of individuals from the Chipperfield family in 1997-1999 have aroused considerable public concern. It is of little surprise therefore that there has been a concurrent decline in the popularity of circuses featuring performing wild animals, which in turn may have led to circuses disposing of their wild animal acts. There have been several polls that serve to indicate this change in public opinion:“See Link To PDF – Its time Parliament changed it’s act;Below”

NOW:-Take action!

Ask the government to keep their promise to end the use of all wild animals in circuses by 2015!

If your local authority has allowed animal circuses on council-owned land, you can write a letter expressing your concernto your local councillor.
[1]  Harris S, Iossa G & Soulsbury CD (2006) A review of the welfare of wild animals in circuses (PDF 404KB). Report submitted to the Circus Working Group, 4 December.

Relevant documents

News Link:-http://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwelfare/wildlife/captivity/circuses

Wild animals in captivity

In 2012, the Westminster Government announced it would finally grant wild animals in circuses their long overdue ban. Two and a half years later and it appears that the government has turned its back on wild animals in the circus.

Our last chance before the election lies with Jim Fitzpatrick MP who has tabled a banning bill to pick up where the government has left off. The banning bill will have it’ssecond reading on 17 October. This is a very important date as it could be our very last chance to see this much discussed ban become a reality.

 News Link By RSPCA: http://www.rspca.org.uk/getinvolved/campaign/bigstop/-/articleName/CAM_The_Big_Stop_v2

Breeding animals for a few generations doesn’t wipe out thousands of years of evolution; essentially a tiger born in a circus has the same needs as a tiger born in the wild.

We’re not saying that the wild is an idyllic place free from problems – it’s not! But animals have evolved over thousands of years, adapting to live in certain types of natural environments.

Placing an animal in surroundings that are unsuitable for the species can cause stress and behavioural problems. Animals kept in an improper environment or fed the wrong diet can suffer, resulting in illness or death. In some environments, we believe it’s best not to keep certain wild animals at all, as their needs cannot be met – particularly if the animal is there for entertainment. Examples are;

If you cannot meet the needs of an animal then you should not keep that animal.

 News Link By RSPCA:-http://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwelfare/wildlife/captivity/-/articleName/WLD_InCaptivity

Wild animals don’t belong in circuses…

Take ActionThe complex needs of wild animals can never be adequately met in a circus environment and regular transport, cramped and bare temporary housing, forced training and performance are all unavoidable realities for the animals.

We have no confidence in the licensing scheme introduced by the government as an interim measure while the ban was being passed. Put simply, it does virtually nothing to protect the welfare of wild animals in circuses.
So what are we waiting for? In March 2012 the Westminster Government announced it would ban wild animals in circuses and the Welsh Government later announced they were keen for Wales to be included in the legislation. However, the animals are still waiting.

Take action, email your MP now and urge them throw their support behind this ‘last chance’ bIll…

News Link RSPCA:-http://www.rspca.org.uk/getinvolved/campaign/bigstop/-/articleName/CAM_The_Big_Stop_v2

SHOW YOUR SUPPORT BY LIKING THIS POST… “Why life in captivity is the last hope of saving tigers” VIA CIRCUSES!!!!

Comments Off on SHOW YOUR SUPPORT BY LIKING THIS POST… “Why life in captivity is the last hope of saving tigers” VIA CIRCUSES!!!!

“Yes I agree, due to the dwindling numbers of tigers in the wild & those that are legally shot for pleasure; there aren’t many left in the wild; BUT there are some decent wildlife parks that tigers can be kept in, whilst following the proper gene protocol etc.. But to say they are better in a circus is too much for me to swallow!!! As an animal advocate of many years, I don’t think tigers are or should be allowed in CIRCUSES.” To say tigers are trained without the use of brute force or cruelty is something I can not accept, i.e jumping through rings of fire!!! Please read the following report on why this person thinks tigers are better off in zoos, someone who is an animal welfare specialist!!! PLEASE READ THIS POST…FOR ME ME IT STANDS AGAINST EVERYTHING I BELIEVE AS AN ANIMAL ADVOCATE.”

“PLEASE SHOW YOUR SUPPORT AGAINST WILD ANIMALS IN CIRCUSES BY LIKING THIS POST…Thanks!

Why life in captivity is the last hope of saving tigers

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: September 23, 2014

By Jamie Foster

I recently went to visit a family who are being attacked. They are hard-working and do not live off state benefits despite being anything but wealthy.

They are a part of a minority community that has been subject to venomous attacks for many years by people who are never called to account. In many ways the prejudices that they suffer are amongst the last socially acceptable, thoughtless bigotries it is possible to openly express.

 

The family I went to visit was a circus family, from Peter Jolly’s circus, the first in Great Britain to be licensed by Defra to have and exhibit big cats. It is a traditional circus maintaining a 300-year-old tradition of showing performing animals to adoring crowds. The family live and work every minute of every day with their animals, which, as a result are in the condition one would expect of pedigree show cattle.

They are physically healthy and mentally stimulated from the constant contact with their trainers. What is odd is that the animal rights lobby has been so successful in persuading a nation of animal lovers that these animals should be in the wild, and that both captivity and being asked to perform are acts of cruelty.

On September 3, Jim Fitzpatrick MP introduced a private member’s bill calling for all wild animals in circuses to be banned.

This is quite an odd legal approach to an activity that is licensed by Defra. It is even more odd considering that the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee has already reported on this issue. The committee included the current Farming Minister, George Eustice; Neil Parish, the East Devon MP currently working closely with the RSPCA on animal welfare matters, and Barry Gardiner, a Labour MP well known for his anti-hunting stance.

The committee’s report recommended the Government should not consider a banning wild animals in circuses but should allow the current licensing system to regulate the activity. This was because the committee found that there were no welfare implications to wild animals being kept captive or performing in circuses. This may surprise many people who are used to hearing the opposite in public, but it doesn’t surprise me. I have seen the conditions that these animals are kept in and the condition of the animals for myself.

If you are against animals in circuses, or have no particular view about them, I would invite you to consider a couple of points.

Take tigers. In the past century we have lost 97 per cent of wild tigers on this planet. There are essentially two reasons for this. Tigers are an apex predator that require a large area of land to survive in the wild. Man has encroached on that land and man is not good at sharing. Worse still, for the tigers, man has decided that their component parts are far more valuable after their death than when they are alive. The reality is that there is not so much wild for them to be in anymore and many people willing to go into the wild to shoot them and sell them on the black market.

The reality is that we cannot turn the clock back. The task of providing a habitat and preventing poaching is simply not one we can complete before tigers become extinct if all tigers were to remain in the wild. This is an appalling reality but it is a reality nonetheless. “Exactly…but they shouldn’t be subjected to training tactics, to entertain the public either”

So we are left with the unavoidable conclusion that some tigers must be kept in captivity, despite how much this offends some people’s aesthetic sensibilities.

Of course we can and should keep tigers in zoos and safari parks. These are both places where the animals are safe and can be studied from a distance. They also, however, have an inherent disadvantage. Tigers in zoos and safari parks do not enjoy the level of mental stimulation they would in the wild, largely because it would be frowned upon to allow them to hunt the other residents. It is for this reason that safari parks came into being in the first place.

People wanted to display animals in settings that more closely resembled the wild than traditional zoos, and where the animals had more to keep them occupied.

Ironically they turned to circus people, who assisted in designing the first safari parks in order to minimise the boredom that can be experienced by animals in captivity.

Tigers in a modern circus, on the other hand, have a great deal of mental stimulation, which comes in the form of the training it takes in order for them to perform. The suggestion that cruelty is employed in this training simply isn’t true. If you were to train a tiger by beating it you would end up with an animal whose only act would be cowering in fear. As anyone who has ever tried to train a dog knows, you may be able to stop an animal from doing something by scaring it but you can’t encourage an animal to do something in the same way.

Tricks that tigers do in a circus may be characterised as “undignified” or “demeaning” but the tiger has no understanding of such concepts. To the tiger, the training is fundamentally similar to the play that it would undertake in the wild and prevents boredom and depression that simply locking it in a cage risks. “Oh Please, there is more that enough undercover investigations to prove this wrong…on all levels”

More than this, however, the circus brings the tiger into contact with humans in an entirely positive way. The tiger makes money while it is alive, rather than only having a value in death. It was a quaint hippy concept from the 1960s that money doesn’t matter and everyone should be free, but real life doesn’t work that way. Conserving tigers is a costly business.

In circuses tigers can contribute to this effort. The truth is we have been working alongside animals for millennia. There is nothing wrong with that as long as welfare standards are as good as they can and should be.

In this country we have the highest welfare standards in the world.”Really??? is that why Britain is the last Country to ban wild animals in circuses?

We need to continue to set an example through the way we maintain those standards, not restrict the areas that good practice can occur in.

Clearly there have been examples of animals being mistreated in the past. This occurs in every walk of life from circuses to our own homes.

The law is entirely adequate to deal with abuse. If someone abuses an animal they should be prosecuted. But banning animals being kept in circuses because some people have mistreated animals is like banning cars because some people crash.

In the US, the Ringling Brothers circus is a multi-billion dollar industry. It grew out of traditional UK circuses and still employs many British performers.

It is an industry that ploughs a fortune into animal conservation. The company owns huge facilities where retired circus animals are kept in fantastic conditions. It is an example of the contribution that private industry can make to the conservation effort and it is an example we should follow, not shy away from.

Currently the animal rights lobby is attacking circuses, and zoos, safari parks, farms, race tracks and abattoirs. The same argument is used to object to all of them. “Sorry I disagree, different living accommodations & racing young horses has nothing to do with zoo life!”

A tiger that lives free in the wild in the way they advocate has an average life span of 15 years. In captivity the average is 25 years, but many go on to 30 years or more. Next time you think about circuses ask yourself if you know the whole truth, or if you have really thought about it at all.

What the legislation says

According to the gov.uk website, anyone in England operating a travelling circus with wild animals must still apply for, and receive, a licence under the Welfare of Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (England) Regulations 2012. These ensure that if a travelling circus continues to use wild animals before a ban can take effect, they will be subject to regular inspections to check they are meeting strict licensing conditions and welfare standards. The regulations are made under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. This act includes the duty of care that applies to owners of animals as well as the offence making it illegal to cause an animal to suffer unnecessarily.” As far as I am aware, Circuses are licensed by their own staff!!”

The RSPCA is campaigning against the use of wild animals in circuses and is lobbying the Westminster and Welsh governments to ban their use in England and Wales. The organisation says: “We don’t believe animals should be subjected to the conditions of circus life. Regular transport, cramped and bare temporary housing, forced training and performance, loud noises and crowds of people are often unavoidable realities for the animals. Scientific research has shown that travelling circus life is likely to have a harmful effect on animal welfare.

Behind the big top

Philip Astley is credited with being the ‘father’ of the modern circus when he opened the first circus in London on April 4, 1768

The word circus derives from the Latin circus, which is the romanisation of the Greek kirkos, which itself derives from Homeric Greek krikos, meaning ‘circle’ or ‘ring’

In 1825 Joshuah Purdy Brown was the first circus owner to use a large canvas tent for the circus performance

In 1919, Lenin expressed a wish for the circus to become ‘the people’s art-form’, with facilities and status on a par with theatre, opera and ballet. Russia later nationalised its circuses

A 2011 Defra consultation saw 94 per cent of respondents, including the British Veterinary Association, backing an end to the use of wild animals in circuses

Keeping wild animals in circuses is to be banned in England from the end of 2015

Attendances for the three travelling circuses using wild animals in 2011 were approximately 153,000

News Link: http://www.westernmorningnews.co.uk/8203-life-captivity-hope-saving-tigers/story-22967942-detail/story.html

Comments on the above

The following are a few comments from people regards the above post:-

 

  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 24 2014, 9:43PM

    The videos are proof of cruelty. These creatures were beaten. Actual fact. Nothing to do with “animal rights lunatics.” It doesn’t matter who made the video. It DID happen. You surely don’t deny this cruelty happened, do you?

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  • Profile image for Equaliser
    Equaliser  |  September 24 2014, 8:41PM

    No. I don’t think anything Animal Rights lunatics rely on to feed their insatiable appetite for self righteous human hatred has anything whatever to do with facts.

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 24 2014, 12:57PM

    *That still is factual isn’t it ?*

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 24 2014, 12:55PM

    Did they not lose the case because of their extreme stupidity with not using a credible witness, not anything to do with the cruelty shown on the video. That still is factual isn’t? We can’t deny elephants getting beaten across the face before they go out to perform tricks can we?. It is there in the video. And also the tigers getting whipped is still factual, don’t you think?

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  • Profile image for Equaliser
    Equaliser  |  September 24 2014, 7:49AM

    Peta lost their case, HSUS lost their case, Aspca lost their case, the list of Vegan front organisations on the hook for legal fees is unending. Try googling Peta loses court case. It will keep you reading for a week. Vegan racketeering is expensive in thenStates apparently.

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 24 2014, 6:29AM

    @equaliser, I genuinely cannot find anything that says Peta had to pay feld. I would honestly be interested if you could send me a link, it would be interesting. The link you sent me named other groups, but not Peta. Are they as one? As I said I am genuinely interested.

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 24 2014, 6:06AM

    Is the abuse not there to see. The camera never lies now does it? What do you think of these people who beat the elephants? It is irrelevant regarding the paid witness, ( although reckless and bloody idiotic) because the abuse of these animal took place. Surely you can’t deny that? What about the gentleman who wrote the article who said and I quote “The suggestion that cruelty is employed in this training simply isn’t true.” (re tigers) there is another link I posted proving they do get beat. You can’t argue with video evidence. So in summery two questions Did Elephants repeatedly get beaten just before they went out to “perform” ? and is the other video proof that tigers are also whipped and beaten so they will “perform.”?

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  • Profile image for Equaliser
    Equaliser  |  September 23 2014, 11:34PM

    You are out of date Lizzy. Peta had to pay Feld due to AR lies and racketeering http://tinyurl.com/lcfkoff

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 23 2014, 7:58PM

    Oh yes and the lovely Ringling Brothers “Feld Entertainment, the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, must now pay the largest settlement of its kind in U.S. history―*270,000―for violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) dating back to 2007” http://tinyurl.com/pl9fd7w

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  • Profile image for lovelylizzy
    lovelylizzy  |  September 23 2014, 7:47PM

    Oh yes no one in circuses ever beats the tigers. Are you sure? https://http://tinyurl.com/qe5fsmc That is just one of many you can google if you would like to look. These beautiful animal are not here to perform tricks for us humans.

Comment Link on above:-http://www.westernmorningnews.co.uk/8203-life-captivity-hope-saving-tigers/story-22967942-detail/story.html#comments

“So why does the writer not take the above into consideration? I completely agree with the RSPCA & Scientific research; which is why wild animals should be banned from circuses…PERIOD. I presume this writer knows about the lawsuits & what Ringling have paid in the past due to poor conditions etc. “SERIOUSLY, DOES THIS GUY EXPECT US TO BELIEVE TIGERS ENTERTAIN… BECAUSE THEY ENJOY IT??  IT STIMULATE THEIR MINDS ETC…..I don’t think so…do you???

 Feld Entertainment, the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus , must now pay the largest settlement  of its kind in U.S. history―$270,000―for violations of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) dating back to 2007. http://www.ringlingbeatsanimals.com/

PETA has been after the USDA all this time to take action against Ringling for abusing the animals in its care. In recent meetings, we presented unequivocal evidence of animal abuse, including beatings, the death of a lion, lame elephants forced to perform despite chronic pain, and a baby elephant who died during a training routine. We had recently filed a new formal request for action against Ringling, and our attorneys had met with the USDA’s general counsel and urged her to begin enforcement proceedings.

Ringling Beats Animals: A PETA Undercover Investigation

Uploaded on 22 Jul 2009

PETA’s 2009 investigation of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus found that workers were beating, whipping, and hooking elephants and striking tigers. Watch the shocking footage now: http://ringlingbeatsanimals.com

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