St. Louis Zoo
St. Louis Zoo
Barrett M.A.,Duke University |
Barrett M.A.,University of California at San Francisco |
Brown J.L.,Duke University |
Junge R.E.,St. Louis Zoo |
Yoder A.D.,Duke University
Biological Conservation | Year: 2013
Deforestation and a changing climate threaten the health and survival of lemurs in Madagascar. An important component of lemur health, parasite infection can reduce fitness and survival outcomes. Future lemur parasite richness, abundance and distribution may be highly influenced by climate change. Current knowledge of lemur parasites is narrow in geographic and temporal scope, with sampling at a limited number of sites, and thus far, there have been no attempts to assess the effects of climate change on lemur parasite distributions. We used geospatial tools to predict the distributions of six lemur parasites of high frequency and pathogenic potential. We then assessed how anticipated climate shifts in Madagascar may alter the distributions of these lemur parasites in the future. Under current climate conditions, we found that the focal parasites exhibited widespread potential distributions across Madagascar, covering 12-26% of surface land area and 40-86% of forested area. Our analyses also showed that parasites responded differently to projected climate changes, with shifts ranging from a contraction of current distributions by 7% to an expansion of 60%. A predicted net expansion in parasite distribution may expose naive lemur hosts to new parasites, which could have a profound effect on lemur health. Those parasites with the greatest potential for harmful effects are predicted to experience the largest expansion in range. Predicting these changing distributions will be critical for assessing population health, improving protected area design, preparing for reintroduction efforts and addressing potential parasite risk in lemurs, humans and domestic animals. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
News Article | December 6, 2016
There are 1,200 semen samples from banteng bulls, which are endangered. In all, there are 18,000 samples of blood and serum that can be used to study diseases and help medicate animals, including an itchy Andean bear at the St. Louis Zoo named Maria, who recently got the treatment she needs to help with her allergies. There are also samples and organs from animals who have died over the past 19 or so years, including Robert B., an endangered Sumatran orangutan who died in July from lung issues but whose organs have been frozen and preserved for study. The St. Louis Zoo's frozen zoo is like a bank, an important depository of tools that researchers can use to help animals now and in the future. It's housed in the Endangered Species Research Center and Veterinary Hospital, Home of the AZA Reproductive Center, behind River's Edge and within sight of the cheetah exhibit. It's only open to the public for special tours. "People have been blown away by what we've been able to achieve," said David Powell, who joined the zoo as its director of research in August. That's why they freeze so many things for a rainy day, knowing technology can only improve. "The science can proceed faster when you have the materials." The work they're doing there has implications worldwide, including helping some species from being wiped off the planet. For example, in the late 1980s, there were only seven known Mexican gray wolves left on the planet. The St. Louis Zoo worked with the Infertility Center of St. Louis to develop a way to freeze sperm and use it to inseminate wolves, explains the zoo's laboratory manager, Karen Bauman. The St. Louis Zoo has the largest sperm bank of Mexican gray wolves in the world, and - largely due to its work - there are now 250 of the animals in captivity and about 100 in the wild. Now that the zoo has done so much work on banking and perfecting their preservation recipe ("It makes beautiful sperm," Bauman said) they can now focus on genetic management. They haven't figured out how to produce embryos in wolves, but they have frozen eggs for when that day comes. When it does, the gene pool will broaden. "They're gorgeous animals in many respects," Bauman said. "They are just magnificent." About 15 years ago the zoo was asked whether it could transfer addax embryos and ship them overseas, which could be easier than shipping an entire 200- to 300-pound animal. They figured out how to produce addax embryos but got stuck trying to figure out controlling a female addax's ovulation cycle. So the embryos will sit in the tank until they figure that out. Meanwhile, conditions for addax in the wild continue to decline, Powell said. Every sample housed in the frozen zoo is listed in a database, and the zoo often shares samples with other zoos doing their own research and reproductive work. This fall, the St. Louis Zoo shipped frozen semen from an endangered Banteng bull, Bubba, to the zoo in Columbus, Ohio, to use to inseminate four cows. Bubba has been dead for several years. "He's been in our tank, waiting his turn," Bauman said. "And hopefully, four cows are pregnant." Some samples are collected during routine exams and others collected systematically. When Bauman isn't in the field with the wolves, she still acts as a keeper at the frozen zoo, answering middle-of-the-night calls from the alarm company if the electricity goes out. She still has to drive in to make sure everything's OK. The frozen zoo also helps keep live animals healthy. They'll run hormone panels and compare that to stress levels from five years ago to help animals adjust, or save blood to see if a drug works for a new species, said veterinarian Luis Padilla, head of animal health at the zoo. "When an animal gets sick, we could pull back samples from the frozen zoo and ask, is this something happening for a while or an emerging disease?" They will also pull serum samples to learn about the nutritional needs of endangered animals and are currently looking to see whether painted dogs need more fat in their diets, and whether there are differences between zoo gorillas with and without cardiac disease. Mary Duncan is the zoo's pathologist and performs biopsies on living animals and necropsies on ones that have died. Just recently, she removed a large mass from a gecko and froze a portion of it in case they need to test it later for a viral infection. Depending on the animal, they'll freeze the tumor. Jaguars are known for mammary tumors, so they'll freeze a portion of those to see whether they are associated with a gene mutation. During what was probably the St. Louis area's strangest freezer cleanout recently, she had to prioritize what to keep and what to throw out, and to make the decision that yes, they probably didn't need quite so many guinea pig tumors. (How many did she clean out? "A lot," she confessed.) She's interested in doing research on penguins, which tend to die from heart issues, so she has frozen samples of about 20 or so penguin hearts from the past two decades. "For me, having the frozen samples opens up the possibility of looking at so many things retrospectively," she said. "It gives you so much potential." She points to the example of a frozen human body in Alaska dug up from the 1918 flu epidemic and tested for research, possibly to help prepare for and maybe prevent another human pandemic. Powell, the zoo's director of research, said nobody could have predicted the advances that have taken place in research for the last 20 years. The frozen samples will help with the next breakthroughs. "We hit an inflection point," he said. "We don't know when that will come, but the frozen zoo has to be ready." Explore further: Klondike, puppy born from a frozen embryo, fetches good news for endangered animals
Shepherdson D.,Oregon Zoo |
Lewis K.D.,Oregon Zoo |
Carlstead K.,Honolulu Zoo |
Bauman J.,St Louis Zoo |
Perrin N.,Oregon Health And Science University
Applied Animal Behaviour Science | Year: 2013
Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) are known to exhibit repetitive pacing behaviors, usually described as stereotypic, in zoo environments. However, little quantitative information exists about the prevalence of pacing in the zoo population. Similarly, large, multi-institutional studies conducted to determine the relationship between stereotypic behavior in zoo polar bears and environmental/husbandry variables using corticoids as a measure of stress are lacking. The study reported here includes data from 55 bears housed in 20 North American zoos. Individual and zoo characteristics were collected and behavior and fecal glucocorticoid metabolites (FGM) were measured over a one-year period. Using an epidemiological approach, individual and facility level multiple linear regression models were constructed to determine the nature, strength and significance of environmental/husbandry variables and temperament (measured using a standardized novel object behavior test) on stereotypic pacing and FGM. We found zoo polar bears performed stereotypic pacing behavior during 14% of the day; the proportion rose to 22% when expressed as a percentage of time engaged in locomotory behavior. However, considerable variation in proportion of stereotypy was observed. Variables associated with reduced pacing at zoos were: enrichment, number of bears in the group, and bears having a view out of their exhibit with a strong suggestion that the existence of a positive reinforcement training program may also be important. Among individuals, bears whose temperament measured high on the "interest" axis (defined in terms of behavior directed toward the novel object) tended to display less stereotypic behavior and those that scored high on the "slow to approach" axis displayed more pacing. We found higher FGM levels were associated with higher proportions of stereotypic pacing, lower levels of the temperament variable "interest" and smaller dry land exhibit area. These results support other studies suggesting polar bears are particularly prone to stereotypic pacing behavior in zoos and that there is a link between stress (measured as FGM) and pacing in zoo polar bears. These findings also suggest that some easily available tools, namely environmental enrichment and possibly positive reinforcement training, can effectively reduce the incidence of these behaviors. Exhibit designers should take note that providing bears with a view out of their exhibit and larger land areas are associated with both behavioral and physiological benefits. Finally, certain temperaments are associated with elevated levels of both stereotypic behavior and corticoids. This information may provide a tool for proactively identifying the individuals most likely to develop pacing behaviors and providing appropriately enhanced care before the behavior becomes established. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.
Rasambainarivo F.T.,Madagascar Fauna Group |
Junge R.E.,St. Louis Zoo
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2010
Infections with gastrointestinal parasites may be a major threat to lemurs kept in captivity, as they are a common cause of diarrhea. In this study, fecal egg count patterns and clinical signs associated with gastrointestinal nematodes were assessed for 12 mo in 40 lemurs kept under different husbandry and climatic conditions at two sites in Madagascar. Involved species were black-and-white ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata), eastern grey bamboo lemurs (Hapalemur griseus), greater bamboo lemurs (Prolemur simus), red-bellied lemurs (Eulemur rubriventer), common brown lemurs (Eulemur fulvus), crowned lemurs (Eulemur coronatus), and Sclater's black lemurs (Eulemur macaco flavifrons). At site 1 (Tsimbazaza Zoological Park), lemurs were kept in small enclosures with daily cleaning of the cement soiling and without routine anthelmintic program, whereas at site 2 (Ivoloina Zoological Park), lemurs received routine anthelmintic prophylaxis and were housed in small enclosure with daily cleaning of sandy soil enclosures. A total of five genera of nematode eggs from the orders Strongylida, Oxyurida, and Enoplida were recovered and identified from 198 out of 240 samples (83) at site 1 and 79 (189 out of 240) at site 2 with the use of a modified McMaster technique. Significant differences were found for parasites from the order Strongylida between the two sites. The differences may be due to climate conditions and the presumed life cycle of these parasites. No significant differences were found for parasites from the other orders. No significant differences were noted between sexes or between seasons. No clinical signs of parasitic gastroenteritis were seen in either lemur collection. Copyright 2010 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.
Pacheco M.A.,Arizona State University |
Battistuzzi F.U.,Arizona State University |
Junge R.E.,St. Louis Zoo |
Cornejo O.E.,Stanford University |
And 6 more authors.
BMC Evolutionary Biology | Year: 2011
Background: Timing the origin of human malarias has been a focus of great interest. Previous studies on the mitochondrial genome concluded that Plasmodium in primates, including those parasitic to humans, radiated relatively recently during a process where host switches were common. Those investigations, however, assumed constant rate of evolution and tightly bound (fixed) calibration points based on host fossils or host distribution. We investigate the effect of such assumptions using different molecular dating methods. We include parasites from Lemuroidea since their distribution provides an external validation to time estimates allowing us to disregard scenarios that cannot explain their introduction in Madagascar. Results: We reject the assumption that the Plasmodium mitochondrial genome, as a unit or each gene separately, evolves at a constant rate. Our analyses show that Lemuroidea parasites are a monophyletic group that shares a common ancestor with all Catarrhini malarias except those related to P. falciparum. However, we found no evidence that this group of parasites branched with their hosts early in the evolution of primates. We applied relaxed clock methods and different calibrations points to explore the origin of primate malarias including those found in African apes. We showed that previous studies likely underestimated the origin of malarial parasites in primates. Conclusions: The use of fossils from the host as absolute calibration and the assumption of a strict clock likely underestimate time when performing molecular dating analyses on malarial parasites. Indeed, by exploring different calibration points, we found that the time for the radiation of primate parasites may have taken place in the Eocene, a time consistent with the radiation of African anthropoids. The radiation of the four human parasite lineages was part of such events. The time frame estimated in this investigation, together with our phylogenetic analyses, made plausible a scenario where gorillas and humans acquired malaria from a Pan lineage. © 2011 Pacheco et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Kozlowski C.P.,St. Louis Zoo |
Kozlowski C.P.,University Of Missourist Louis |
Hahn D.C.,U.S. Geological Survey
Wilson Journal of Ornithology | Year: 2010
We studied androgen production during development in nestling Eastern Screech-Owls (Megascops asio) and hypothesized that gender and hatch order might influence serum levels of testosterone and androstenedione. Testosterone levels were highest immediately after hatching and declined significantly in the 4 weeks leading to fledging. The average level of testosterone for 17 day-old owls was 3.99 ± 0.68 ng/ml. At 2228 days of age, the average testosterone level for nestling owls was 0.83 ± 0.18 ng/ml. Testosterone levels did not differ between males or females. The average testosterone level for male nestlings was 2.23 ± 0.29 ng/ml and 2.39 ± 0.56 ng/ml for female nestlings. The average level of androstenedione for nestling owls was 1.92 ± 0.11 ng/ml and levels remained constant throughout development. Levels were significantly higher in males than females. The average androstenedione level was 1.77 ± 0.16 ng/ml for male nestlings and 1.05 ± 0.24 ng/ml for female nestlings. Hatching order did not affect levels of either androgen. Our results provide a foundation for future studies of androgen production by nestling owls. © 2010 by the Wilson Ornithological Society.
Christensen B.W.,Iowa State University |
Schlafer D.H.,Cornell University |
Agnew D.W.,Michigan State University |
Wang C.,Iowa State University |
And 2 more authors.
Reproduction in Domestic Animals | Year: 2012
Contents: Transcervical endometrial biopsy is a useful tool for obtaining information about uterine health in some species. The clinical application of information gained from histopathological interpretations of endometrial biopsies in the bitch has not been validated. We hypothesized that transcervical endometrial biopsy samples would be as diagnostic as full-thickness uterine sections in identifying cystic endometrial hyperplasia (CEH), inflammation and periglandular fibrosis. Endometrial biopsies were obtained from 20 female adult dogs. Vaginal swabs, gross appearance of the vulva and vaginal tract, and serum progesterone values were used to determine the stage of the oestrous cycle at the time of sampling. The uteri were removed between 1 and 6 days after the biopsy procedure, and full-thickness sections were collected from each uterine horn and ovary and processed for histopathology. Two pathologists, blinded to the origin of each sample, compared full-thickness sections from the excised uteri to the biopsy samples collected via the transcervical technique. Pathologic features noted included: CEH, inflammation and periglandular fibrosis. Pathological diagnoses obtained from the biopsy sections were compared with those obtained from the full-thickness sections, as well as comparing diagnoses between the two pathologists, using McNemar's test. Of the 59 total biopsy samples obtained, 54 were considered diagnostic. All stages of the canine oestrous cycle were represented (anoestrus, proestrus, oestrus and dioestrus). Pyometra was not noted in any of the transcervical biopsy sections, but was noted in many of the full-thickness sections collected from dogs in dioestrus, suggesting either that biopsy is not a sensitive indicator of pyometra or that the procedure may induce pyometra in dioestrous dogs. Transcervical endometrial biopsy showed similar sensitivity as full-thickness sections in detecting CEH, inflammation and fibrosis. No differences in describing lesions were detected between pathologists. © 2012 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.
Junge R.E.,St. Louis Zoo |
Barrett M.A.,Duke University |
Yoder A.D.,Duke University
American Journal of Primatology | Year: 2011
Anthropogenic habitat disturbance impairs ecosystem health by fragmenting forested areas, introducing environmental contamination, and reducing the quality of habitat resources. The effect of this disturbance on wildlife health is of particular concern in Madagascar, one of the world's biodiversity hotspots, where anthropogenic pressures on the environment remain high. Despite the conservation importance of threatened lemur populations in Madagascar, few data exist on the effects of anthropogenic disturbance on lemur health. To examine these impacts, indri (Indri indri) populations were evaluated from two forest reserves that differ in their exposure to anthropogenic disturbance. We compared the health status of 36 indri individuals from two sites: one population from a protected, undisturbed area of lowland evergreen humid forest and the other population from a reserve exposed to frequent tourism and forest degradation. Comparison of indri health parameters between sites suggests an impact of anthropogenic disturbance, including significant differences in leukocyte count and differential, 12 serum parameters, 6 trace minerals, and a higher diversity of parasites, with a significant difference in the presence of the louse, Trichophilopterus babakotophilus. These data suggest that indri living in disturbed forests may experience physiological changes and increased susceptibility to parasitism, which may ultimately impair reproductive success and survival. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
News Article | February 21, 2017
Fpweb.net, a managed IT services and cloud provider with a global infrastructure and headquarters in St. Louis, Mo., has increased its community outreach. For every $100 of new business, Fpweb is donating $2 to charity: water on behalf of its clients. charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries. 100% of the money is used to build clean water projects. According to charity: water, 663 million people in the world live without clean water, which is nearly one in 10 people worldwide, or twice the population of the United States. The majority live in isolated rural areas and spend hours every day walking to collect water for their family. Not only does walking for water keep kids out of school or take up time that parents could be using to earn money, but the water often carries diseases that can make everyone sick. Fpweb also gives back to its St. Louis community by supporting several local non-profit organizations. The BackStoppers – Financially assisting the families of St. Louis area first responders who die in the line of duty by paying off all debt, assuming financial obligations such as mortgage payments, taxes, providing health and dental insurance, and helping with the costs of elementary, secondary, and college/vocational education. The Little Bit Foundation – Giving, serving, and advocating for impoverished children in St. Louis through partnerships with area schools and serving as the backbone of distribution for programs that provide for students’ essential needs. Missouri Botanical Garden – The nation’s oldest botanical garden in continuous operation and a National Historic Landmark, the Garden is a center for botanical research and science education, as well as an oasis in the city of St. Louis. St. Louis Public Radio – Provides the St. Louis region award-winning, in-depth news on-air and online, insightful discussion, and entertaining programs that focus on the issues and people who shape our communities, our country and our world. St. Louis Zoo – Recently voted America’s Top Free Attraction, the St. Louis Zoo welcomes more than 3 million visitors a year and is renowned for its innovative approaches to animal management, wildlife conservation, research, and education.
News Article | November 4, 2016
The failure of Congress to adequately fund the Zika response might be simply another example of partisan politics derailing common sense. There are certainly plenty of those. And yet, juxtaposed with the hysteria that surrounded Ebola—though the relative risk to most Americans was small—I wonder if the disproportionate response might be, at least in part, because the names of the viruses themselves. Do viruses like Zika, named after a forest in Uganda and Ebola, after a river in the Democratic Republic of Congo, conjure for Americans an exoticism that is mysterious, unknowable and unpredictable, that warrants either a wild over or under-reaction? If you work in public health you’re likely to be familiar with the fact that close to 70 percent of emerging infectious diseases originate with animals, but surely those animals are found in places far away, like the Adodessewa fetish market in Lomé, Togo? Adodessewa is where Vodun healers find animal parts which, ground together in a powder with herbs, can be used in treating illnesses of the body or mind. Vodun is a collective term for the traditional African religions that an estimated 30 million West Africans practice alongside Christianity or Islam. The market consists of a large, dusty parking lot ringed by stalls owned and operated by herbalists and priests. Long rectangular tables sit in front of the stalls, weighted down with a kind of Noah’s ark of dead animals from all over West Africa: collections of creepers, flyers and leapers (including a box of chameleons), all bake in the sun. When my friend Valerie and I climb out of the back of a taxi one blistering December afternoon, we are not merely the only European-Americans, but the only visitors, in sight. A man rises from a group of men sitting in the shade of a tree in the parking lot to greet us and explain the terms. His services, which include an introduction to a priest in one of the stalls and translation of his prescriptions, come at one price. Permission to photograph the tables of animal parts and the painted signs that advertise herbal healers by name and stall number, is extra. Valerie and I pause briefly to confer. We are in Togo for the first time, though I have been to Ghana several times with public health students on study abroad. Valerie does most of her field work in Haiti, where enslaved Africans brought versions of Vodun with them to the Americas in the form of Santeria and Voodoo. It was she who located the market in our guidebook, but it is my camera that is readily accessible. We decide that I will be the one to take pictures. In the age of Facebook, photographs are easily shared. If I stand close enough to get the expressions on the faces of the monkey heads, the frame fills with them and it seems, at least from the picture, that there are only monkeys. There are many, many more animals, however. Dogs with canine teeth sharply pointing toward the dirt. Birds lined up on their backs from small to large like little soldiers. A sloth like creature that looks so firmly expired with its tongue protruding below its rounded nose that I can almost see cartoon Xs on its eyes. Many of these animals are ones that I have seen only in zoos and I am trying not to think of the ecological impact of so many dead creatures. After all, I am a visitor here and, anyway, as far as environmental destruction goes, Togo has nothing on the United States. Beyond even the oversized carbon footprint that our country stamps on the face of the world, pacification of land into suburbs comprises its own kind of religion where Valerie and I are from. The sprawl that has resulted currently threatens 30 percent of domestic animal and plant species. We move slowly from table to table, dust coating our toes and sandals. The animal parts reek. Our guide pauses in front of each display and watches carefully while I take pictures, making sure we get our money’s worth. Our guide gestures to a small boy to hold up the head of a tortoise or the hand of a chimpanzee so we can get a better look. The Lolli Brother’s animal auction in Macon, Missouri trades in live animals, as well as dead ones and unlike at Adodessewa, photographs are strictly forbidden. According to the Humane Society, the state where my children were born and where I work is one of the least regulated states for the trade and possession of exotic animals in the country. An often-heard argument in debating public health regulations is that different communities have the right to tolerate different risks. When my husband and I bought land with friends in the Ozarks, we began investigating building codes only to determine that Shannon County, Missouri didn’t have any. Never mind that the right to tolerate higher risk is closely correlated with the right to be poor (Shannon County is the poorest in the state), the interconnectedness of even the most previously isolated populations might lead one to broaden the sense of what a comprises a “community,” especially when discussing communicable diseases. The Lolli Brothers exotic animal auction in Missouri operates since the 1980s in a political culture that tends to value—except it seems in matters relating to sexuality and reproductive choice—the freedom to over the freedom from. Your neighbor’s freedom to own a chimpanzee, for example, supersedes your freedom from the risks those neighbors might pose to you, as in the chimp born in Festus Missouri and transported to Connecticut, that ripped off a person’s nose, lips, eyelids and hands. In 2016 Macon, Missouri remains the place you go if you are hankering for a camel to include in your church’s nativity play or a zorse (half horse half zebra) for your I-40 roadside attraction. Because the brothers are “auctioneers” and never actually own or sell the animals themselves, they are not restricted by local laws and regulations, such as the one prohibiting individuals from keeping jaguars as pets. Instead, they urge buyers to “know the regulations in your state.” I’d first heard about the Lolli Brothers’ Exotic Animal Auction from Ingrid, who was then primate curator at the St. Louis Zoo and who introduced each of the animals in her care by name before identifying which of them had been rescued from meth dealers in rural Missouri, a demographic group not known for taking statutes and prohibitions to heart. On the day I visited Macon, the auction was offering camels, deer and zebra to an audience that included a number of Amish, an adolescent girl wearing a t-shirt advertising a towing company called Camel Tow and a woman carrying a monkey dressed as a human baby. And there were tourists, too, only slightly harder to spot at Lolli Brothers’ than my friend and I had been at Adodessewa. Sitting below us on the bleachers, a young woman scribbled surreptitious notes on a pad in her bag. She was, it turned out, journalism graduate student from Berkeley, California. At Adodessewa our visit ended in the company of the fetish priest who, through our translator, asked us to share our complaints, if we had any. Meanwhile, divining unspoken ones, he offered the one of us two not wearing a wedding ring a talisman to draw love. Afterwards, we hopped in the taxi and drove over the dirt to the paved road. At the exit of the parking lot our driver, a man named Dominique, paused and leaned over the back of the seat. “That is not the real fetish market, you understand,” he said and smiled. “That is for tourists.” It took us a while to understand the full implications of what he was telling us. If the market was for tourists then the animals had been, literally, killed for our pictures. In an age of global travel, anywhere in the world is less than twenty-four hours away from anywhere else. All kinds of animals are moving farther and more frequently than ever before. Sometimes they arrive as food. Sometimes they arrive as pets. Sometimes, and I’m talking now of the two-legged kind, they behave in self-destructive and short-sighted ways. The pictures that Valerie and I took could not be untaken, but we could choose not to post them, not to drop our own visual breadcrumbs to the market of dead animals, the spectacle that had been created, apparently, just for us. Months later, over onion rings at a local joint called AJ’s in Macon, after skipping out on the zebras, I couldn’t help wondering what story that journalism student would write. Would it be one that highlighted the oddness of this Missouri scene, not just the exotics but Macon itself, with its big trucks and big hair, its five thousand residents perched on Highway 63 North? Or would it be a story that drew a circle around Macon and Lomé, Berkeley and Accra, and sought to illuminate the ways that we are increasingly connected and responsible to each other, to the animals and to the environment that must sustain us both?