Born Free USA Blog
by Will Travers,
Chief Executive Officer
What can you say about a big-hearted bloke who has rescued dolphins, tigers, elephants and more and whose parents once helped a lion cub from a department store by caring for him in their backyard and engineering his rightful return to Africa? You can safely say that he's got great animal instincts! In 1984, Will Travers joined his parents — "Born Free" film stars Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers — to form what became The Born Free Foundation. With knowledge, passion and compassion dripping from his every word, Will's blogs are sure to make you embrace our crusade to Keep Wildlife in the Wild ®.
California Resident Buys Ivory
Thai authorities recently indicted two key suspects in an international ivory trafficking operation. One suspect, arrested in Bangkok in November 2009, has been charged with violating US Federal smuggling statutes as it appears that some of the ivory was sold to an individual in Montclair, CA.
The news that Michael Vick has been rehabilitated into the sports world is certainly controversial. But the question on the mind of all those who care about animals is: Has he truly seen the light and put his previous — and terrible — behavior behind him? Will he now be the animals’ champion instead of nemesis? Only time will tell.
Without a doubt there is one policy that all the prospective Dallas City Council Members (including those seeking to be newly elected to office this week) can and should unite over.
The future of Jenny, the elephant at the Dallas Zoo.
Experts reckon that at no time in the past has the earth been blessed with such a variety and abundance of wildlife. More than 30 million species fill every available niche, habitat and ecosystem ... but far from looking forward with optimism, we stand on the edge of the abyss. For at no other time in recorded history are species disappearing as fast as they are today — sometimes before they have even been discovered or properly recorded. It is estimated that human activities are driving species into oblivion at 30 times their natural rate — and we are to blame.
In nature almost impossible to find.
In zoos all too common — and not just in the low grade, impoverished zoos scattered around the developing world (usually an embarrassing remnant of colonial days).
The Dallas Zoo, in one of the wealthiest states of the world’s superpower, has a solitary female African elephant — Jenny.
Hard to believe, I know.
The Born Free Foundation, the organization that started it all (founded by my parents, Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers), is a staggering 25 years old.
Although I am always pleased to hear that an animal has been rescued from an horrific situation, this happiness is always overshadowed by the fact that this animal was put in a position from which it had to be rescued — problems such as illegal trade and exploitation continue to negatively impact wildlife around the world.
News from Thailand recently described the confiscation of eleven orangutans by authorities after they were discovered by the investigation team of the Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand.
Some years ago, two well-meaning US citizens, a husband and wife, adopted a baby chimpanzee. They brought him up as if he was a child. When he got too big he was re-homed to a refuge and they visited him almost every birthday.
Some years later the couple asked the owner of the refuge whether they could go in with this now fully grown male chimp to celebrate his birthday — into a cage he shared with several other chimps. The result? The woman escaped with serious injuries. The man was beaten to within an inch of his life, losing fingers, toes and other parts of his body in the process.