Sounds like a title for some kids movie huh? But this is not at all humorous. The newest Big Cat Safety Act HR 1998 could very well end big cats in captivity. Well not all captivity and not all big cat species. Only AZA zoo’s could breed them and only sanctuaries can have them.
Now to help everyone understand this a bit better I will put this in your everyday lingo that you and I can understand and relate to. and outline the reasons WHY this WILL spell extinction for a lot of big cats.
A little history on the AZA- Founded in 1924 as a non profit (hence a PRIVATE non governing organization),The organization is active in institution accreditation, animal care initiatives, education and conservation programs, collaborative research and political lobbying in order to achieve this goal. It serves as an accrediting body for zoos and aquariums and ensures that accredited facilities meet higher standards of animal care than are required by law. Institutions are evaluated every five years in order to ensure standards are met and to maintain accreditation. The association also facilitates both Species Survival Plans and Population Management Plans, which serve to sustainably manage genetically diverse captive populations of various animal species.
Ok, they can be a GREAT THING. But there are only so many AZA zoo’s. They can only sustain SO MANY SPECIES that are in critical need. And the different zoo’s actually have their own stud books. What this means is that say, Zoo A owns the stud book on the Emperor Penguin, if zoo B wishes to breed their own penguins they must check with Zoo A. Now this is a good thing in one big aspect as it does create a safety system to protect against too close of breedings. BUT on the other hand, IF the AZA states that there are enough penguins and they want another species bred then zoo B cannot breed. Well, then that might be a good thing right? WRONG! Please read this from a science magazine!! Zoo’s MUST make a bitter choice to save some species and let others die! YOU READ THAT RIGHT! http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/28/science/zoos-bitter-choice-to-save-some-species-letting-others-die.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
So there you have it folks. They do NOT have the room nor the resources to save them all… yet you have people that are trying to get YOU, John Q Public to believe that your non accredited zoo cannot help. Again, I take you back to the Wolves of Yellowstone and the Florida Panther.. all done through private sectors.
So how is it that we have activist that want this bill to happen? BECAUSE THEY HAVE NOT RESEARCHED THE FACTS and unfortunately I do believe after what I have read on some public forums, will even ARGUE with the facts in front of them all because so and so said it was otherwise. Here I give you PROOF and SCIENTIFIC PROOF. I DO NOT pass on personal feelings, although I must admit, I am emotionally involved with this as I am facing the prospect of losing my beloved Asian Leopard. I cannot imagine a world without them. Can you?
Please, sign the letter to your representative and let them know this WILL be the end of ALL big cats.. not just in captivity.. but the world. http://the-cavalry-group.rallycongress.com/10082/stop-hsus-hr-1998/
Please consider a donation, We are a 501(c)3 non profit dedicated to not only the Asian Leopard but ALL animal life