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Burmese python seized from Chilliwack home by B.C. conservation officers

Burmese python seized from Chilliwack home by B.C. conservation officers

The snake, one of the largest in the world, is illegal to possess in British Columbia

“Conservation officers have seized a nearly three-metre-long Burmese python from a home in Chilliwack.”

While this particular species of snake is illegal to keep in B.C., MANY other wild and exotic species are, in fact, legal to keep as pets. But wild and exotic animals, whether wild-caught or captive-bred, retain their complex social, physiological and behavioural needs that they would have in the wild. As a result, they can experience significant suffering when kept as pets.

The VHS has been calling on the B.C. government for better protections for wild and exotic animals. Add your name in support!

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Animal organizations get authorization for private prosecution in live horse export case

Photo: Canadian Horse Defence Coalition

Animal rights groups get rare authorization for private prosecution in live-horse export case | CBC News

In what’s believed to be a first in relation to farmed animals, Canada’s federal court has given animal welfare advocates the green light to privately prosecute a live horse exporter in Manitoba.

In what’s believed to be a first in relation to farmed animals, a court has given animal welfare advocates the green light to privately prosecute a live-horse exporter in Manitoba after three horses collapsed during a trip that exceeded the 28-hour maximum journey without food, water, or rest.

“We have so few laws on the books to protect these horses,” said Kaitlyn Mitchell, director of legal advocacy with the non-profit group Animal Justice.

“The least that we can do is to make sure that what few laws we do have are actually enforced. Otherwise, what good are they?”

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Vancouver Humane Society responds to red panda breeding program: “Not about conservation”

Paprika the red panda meets her mate at the Greater Vancouver Zoo | CBC News

The Greater Vancouver Zoo is trying to breed more red pandas, however the Vancouver Humane Society said the program keeps mammals in captivity, while not immediately benefiting animals in the wild.

The Vancouver Humane Society has weighed in on the planned breeding of red pandas at the Greater Vancouver Zoo in a new article from the CBC.

The breeding is part of a “Species Survival Plan”, a program by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) which maintains captive animal populations at AZA facilities. Zoo officials comment that captive bred red pandas could be reintroduced back into the wild “if needed”.

However, the program does not immediately benefit animals in the wild.

Chantelle Archambault, Communications Director for the Vancouver Humane Society, said the organization is disappointed to see the zoo bringing in another red panda for breeding. 

“We know the program brings a lot of financial benefit to the zoo, but the cost of that is there’s more animals who will spend their entire lives in captivity in a foreign and unfamiliar environment that can’t meet all their needs,” said Archambault. 

“Breeding exotic animals halfway around the world to be kept in a zoo their whole life is not about conservation,” she said. 

The two red pandas born at the Greater Vancouver Zoo in June 2022, Maple and Mei Mei, have since been moved to other zoos in Canada.

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Greater Vancouver Zoo plans to breed red pandas again

New red panda, ‘Paprika,’ arrives at Greater Vancouver Zoo

A new red panda has arrived at the Greater Vancouver Zoo. Named “Paprika,” the new critter is being brought in as a partner for another red panda, Arun.

The Greater Vancouver Zoo is once again planning to breed red pandas a continent away from their native habitat. Without a reintroduction plan in place, they will spend their entire lives in captivity.

“‘This important introduction is a part of our species survival plan for Red Pandas and will hopefully lead to future little Red Panda cubs! (we hope ??),’ the zoo said on Facebook.”

The two red pandas born at the zoo in 2022, Maple and Mei Mei, were moved to Assiniboine Park Zoo in Manitoba and Zoo de Granby in Quebec.

Captivity and conservation are not the same thing. Here are a few questions to ask to find out if a conservation program helps wildlife.

  1. Does it make a tangible difference for animals in the wild?
  2. Does it protect natural habitats and/or address the threats species face in the wild?
  3. Does it support the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of native wildlife in their natural habitats?
  4. If captive breeding occurs, is there a plan in place to reintroduce animals into their native habitats when they are old enough to survive in the wild?

The Vancouver Humane Society is calling for meaningful changes to prevent the suffering of animals in captivity.

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Undisclosed coyote trapping in Stanley Park sparks public safety backlash

Undisclosed coyote trapping in Stanley Park sparks public safety backlash

Plan to reduce human-coyote conflict in Vancouver’s Stanley Park is under fire after critics say trapping could pose a threat to public safety.

An undisclosed research program to trap coyotes using drop nets, neck snares and leg-hold traps in Stanley Park poses a threat to public safety. 

“Aaron Hofman, director of advocacy and policy at the non-profit The Fur-Bearers, said that by failing to disclose the plan to the public, the City of Vancouver is putting workers, park-goers, pets and unhoused individuals at serious risk of injury.”

The Fur-Bearers are urging anyone concerned about this plan to contact the University of British Columbia and the City of Vancouver.

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Pets are no longer ‘property’ under B.C. family law

Pets are no longer ‘property’ under B.C. family law | Watch News Videos Online

Watch Pets are no longer ‘property’ under B.C. family law Video Online, on GlobalNews.ca

B.C. family courts will no longer treat pets as “property” in divorce and separation proceedings, recognizing their safety, well-being, and place as part of the family.

“It breaks new legislative ground for treating companion animals as valued family members,” said V. Victoria Shroff of Shroff Animal Law.

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How to prevent further bird flu outbreaks in B.C.

Letter: How to prevent further bird flu outbreaks in B.C.

The PETA Foundation has written a series of alternate food options to help stop the spread.

“The best way to prevent future outbreaks of bird flu, which has been found on more than 50 poultry farms in British Columbia since October, is to stop raising birds for food.”

The PETA Foundation has written a series of plant-based options to help stop the spread in this letter to the Times Colonist.

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Millions of birds killed due to avian flu in B.C.

11 new cases of avian flu in Lower Mainland | CityNews Vancouver

Two new cases of bird flu have been confirmed in Chilliwack by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, bringing the total cases across the Lower Mainland to 11.

“Canadian Food Inspection Agency data show there have been 39 B.C. outbreaks of H5N1 avian flu since Oct. 20, resulting in almost five million birds dying of infection or being ‘humanely depopulated’ to halt the spread of the virus.”

Intensive animal agriculture, where a large number of animals are kept in close quarters under stressful conditions, puts animals at risk of disease spread like avian influenza.

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Where to donate to help Metro Vancouverites, animals in need over the holidays

Where to donate to help Metro Vancouverites, animals in need over the holidays

There are numerous places in Metro Vancouver, BC that are asking for donations leading up to Christmas Day 2023. Find out how to help those less fortunate.

The Vancouver Humane Society, the Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary, and other worthy causes were featured in Vancouver is Awesome! Read the article to find out how your gift can make a difference this holiday season.

“Panago Pizza locations across B.C. will offer plant-based pizzas for $15 with the code PLANT15 on Tuesday, Nov. 28. One dollar from each purchase will be donated to the Vancouver Humane Society (VHS) and the Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary. Panago has five plant-based pizzas to choose from.

“Funds support a loving forever home for more than 65 animals at the Happy Herd sanctuary in Aldergrove, which rescues animals from the farming industry. 

“Donated dollars also support vital program and advocacy work at the Vancouver Humane Society, including covering life-saving veterinary care for beloved pets and ensuring they can return to their caring guardians rather than being surrendered to the overburdened shelter and rescue system.

“Members of the community can also donate directly to the VHS and The Happy Herd online. Panago is matching donations made to the Giving Tuesday campaign up to $2,000, and other generous local partners are matching an additional $6,000 in donations.”

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B.C. hog farm accused of animal cruelty after new video released

Excelsior Hog Farm in Abbotsford is once again under scrutiny after new footage depicting horrific animal suffering was released by Animal Justice, revealing:

  • dead and rotting pigs, including piglets whose carcasses were partially eaten;
  • crushed and stillborn piglets inside crates;
  • pigs kicked in the stomach and face;
  • pigs jabbed with a metal rod and hit with plastic boards;
  • pigs with hernias, prolapses, blood laceration and open wounds; and
  • water troughs that appear to be filled with feces and blood.

The footage appears to “show some violations of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, potentially the Criminal Code and without a doubt violations of industry’s own subscribed national codes of practice,” according to the BC SPCA.

Content warning: The video accompanying this article contains censored (blurred), disturbing footage.

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