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Hadidian J.,The Humane Society of the United States
Animals | Year: 2015

Conflicts between people and wild animals in cities are undoubtedly as old as urban living itself. In the United States it is only of late, however, that many of the species now found in cities have come to live there. The increasing kind and number of human-wildlife conflicts in urbanizing environments makes it a priority that effective and humane means of conflict resolution be found. The urban public wants conflicts with wildlife resolved humanely, but needs to know what the alternative management approaches are, and what ethical standards should guide their use. This paper examines contemporary urban wildlife control in the United States with a focus on the moral concerns this raises. Much of the future for urban wildlife will depend on reform in governance, but much as well will depend on cultural changes that promote greater respect and understanding for wild animals and the biotic communities of which they and we are both a part. © 2015 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Bishop P.L.,People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals | Bishop P.L.,PETA International Science Consortium Ltd. | Willett C.E.,The Humane Society of the United States
Birth Defects Research Part B - Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology | Year: 2014

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) currently relies on an initial screening battery (Tier 1) consisting of five in vitro and six in vivo assays to evaluate a chemical's potential to interact with the endocrine system. Chemical companies may request test waivers based on Other Scientifically Relevant Information (OSRI) that is functionally equivalent to data gathered in the screening battery or that provides information on a potential endocrine effect. Respondents for 47 of the first 67 chemicals evaluated in the EDSP submitted OSRI in lieu of some or all Tier 1 tests, seeking 412 waivers, of which EPA granted only 93. For 20 of the 47 chemicals, EPA denied all OSRI and required the entire Tier 1 battery. Often, the OSRI accepted was either identical to data generated by the Tier 1 assay or indicated a positive result. Although identified as potential sources of OSRI in EPA guidance, Part 158 guideline studies for pesticide registration were seldom accepted by EPA. The 93 waivers reduced animal use by at least 3325 animals. We estimate 27,731 animals were used in the actual Tier 1 tests, with additional animals being used in preparation for testing. Even with EPA's shift toward applying 21st-century toxicology tools to screening of endocrine disruptors in the future, acceptance of OSRI will remain a primary means for avoiding duplicative testing and reducing use of animals in the EDSP. Therefore, it is essential that EPA develop a consistent and transparent basis for accepting OSRI. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Gomez L.M.,The Humane Society of the United States
Journal of applied animal welfare science : JAAWS | Year: 2010

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is a major biomedical research-funding body in the United States. Approximately 40% of NIH-funded research involves experimentation on nonhuman animals (Monastersky, 2008). Institutions that conduct animal research with NIH funds must adhere to the Public Health Service (PHS) care and use standards of the Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW, 2002a). Institutions deviating significantly from the PHS's animal care and use standards must report these incidents to the NIH's OLAW. This study is an exploratory analysis of all the significant deviations reported by animal-research facilities to OLAW during a 3-month period. The study identifies the most common issues reported and species involved. The study found that the majority of the incidents resulted in animal pain and distress and that 75% ended in animal death. This study offers preliminary recommendations to address the most common problems identified in this analysis. This study urges OLAW and other stakeholders to analyze larger, more recent samples of reported deviations to compare with these results and ultimately improve adherence to animal welfare standards.

News Article
Site: phys.org

The park and popular tourist destination has faced criticism from animal rights groups over its treatment of orcas, which opponents say are kept in tanks that are too small, fed improper diets and forced to perform tricks. "The killer whales in our care will be the last at SeaWorld," said a company statement. "We haven't taken a whale from the wild in nearly 40 years. Now, we're going further and will end our orca breeding programs as of today." SeaWorld currently has seven orcas in Orlando, Florida; five in San Antonio, Texas; and 11 in San Diego, California. The animals range in age from one to 51. SeaWorld also has one orca that is currently pregnant. Another, Tilikum, who drowned his US trainer during a live show in 2010, is severely ill due to a bacterial infection. As part of deal struck with The Humane Society of the United States, SeaWorld pledged to donate $50 million over the next five years for the rescue and rehabilitation of marine animals and on advocacy campaigns. Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of the HSUS, called the move "a major boost to our movement in helping marine animals in crisis." SeaWorld also said any new parks opened around the world would not contain orcas, and that "new, inspiring and natural orca encounters" would be introduced instead of theatrical acts with the animals. The changes will begin in San Diego next year, followed by San Antonio and Orlando in 2019, SeaWorld said. "SeaWorld has introduced more than 400 million guests to orcas, and we are proud of our part in contributing to the human understanding of these animals," said Joel Manby, president and chief executive officer of SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. "We've helped make orcas among the most beloved marine mammals on the planet. As society's understanding of orcas continues to change, SeaWorld is changing with it." "By making this the last generation of orcas in our care and reimagining how guests will experience these beautiful animals, we are fulfilling our mission of providing visitors to our parks with experiences that matter." The 2013 documentary "Blackfish" depicted the harms inflicted on orcas in captivity. SeaWorld disputed the allegations, saying the film "relies on animal rights activists masquerading as scientists." People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which has been a vocal opponent of SeaWorld's treatment of marine animals, welcomed the decision. "PETA has campaigned hard & today there's a pay off for future generations of orcas," the group said on Twitter. California congressman Adam Schiff, a Democrat, called on lawmakers to "now pass the ORCA Act to make these changes permanent across the country, not just at SeaWorld, but in all parks." Explore further: California bill that would end orca shows stalls (Update 2)

News Article
Site: www.rdmag.com

The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) will no longer support biomedical research on chimpanzees. The organization’s director, Francis S. Collins, released a statement on the subject Wednesday. “It has been two and half years since NIH announced its decision in June 2013 to significantly reduce the use of chimpanzees in agency-supported biomedical research and retain only a small population of chimpanzees for future biomedical research,” writes Collins. Following the 2013 announcement, the NIH retained 50 chimpanzees for research usage. But the tipping point came on June 16, 2015, when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service designated captive chimpanzees as endangered. According to Collins, such a designation requires researchers to apply and obtain a permit for research if it could potentially harm the animal. “I have reassessed the need to maintain chimpanzees for biomedical research and decided that effective immediately, NIH will no longer maintain a colony of 50 chimpanzees for future research,” writes Collins. Retired chimpanzees will be moved to the Federal Sanctuary System, operated by Chimp Haven in Keithville, La. According to The Shreveport Times, Chimp Haven sprawls across 200 acres of forest. It was approved as a national sanctuary system by the federal government in 2002. Since then, more than 300 chimpanzees have retired there. “Chimp Haven is thrilled with today’s announcement from the NIH to cease using all chimpanzees in research,” writes the organization on their Facebook page. “We applaud their acknowledgement that there is no further justification for keeping 50 chimpanzees in reserve for future research needs.” According to Collins, relocation to the sanctuary will occur “on a timescale that will allow for optimal transition of each individual chimpanzee with careful consideration of their welfare, including their health and social grouping.” “Research with other non-human primates will continue to be valued, supported and conducted by the NIH,” Collins writes. The announcement has been met with praise and disdain from advocacy groups on different sides of the aisle regarding animal research. “Moving these chimpanzees to sanctuary is not only the right thing to do, but it will also save taxpayer dollars due to the lower cost of care,” writes Wayne Pacelle, the president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “It’s rare to close out a category of animal use so emphatically,” he adds. “That’s exactly what’s happening here, and it’s thrilling.” According to Pacelle, about 700 chimpanzees remain in laboratories, with about 300 owned by the federal government. According to Science Magazine, Collins, along with NIH researcher Stephen Suomi have experienced mounting pressure from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). PETA’s tactics included revealing the two’s phone numbers and addresses, and sending letters to neighbors within a 2- to 3-km radius of their homes. “If I had a neighbor who was doing this, I would want to know about it,” said PETA’s Alka Chandna to Science Magazine. “It’s similar to having a sexual predator in your neighborhood.” Meanwhile, Speaking of Research, an organization that “aims to explain the important role of animals in research,” took to Twitter and called the NIH’s decision “unfortunate…for science, for the chimpanzees affected by this move, and for wild chimpanzees.”

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