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Menaw Conference

 

Cairo, March 7, 8, 9 2017

 

Conference Report

 

The Fifth MENAW Conference

“Back on Track”

Cairo, 7-9 March 2017

 

 

 

Special Guests

 

*** HE. Prof Dr. Mona Mehrez, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture,

in Charge of Animal Wealth, Poultry and All Aspects of Animal issues

*** Prof.Dr. Gaber Nasser, President of Cairo University

*** Cairo University

*** Suez Canal University

*** Ain Shams University

***GOVS, The Egyptian Organization for Veterinary Services

***Egyptian Vet Syndicate

 

 

International Organizations Attending

 

  • Pegas- Kynia
  • Compassion in World Farming (UK)
  • Donkey Sanctuary (England)
  • Vier Pfoten International( Four Paws)

 

 

National Animal Welfare Societies

Egypt

 

  • Egyptian Society of Animal Friends, ESAF – Hosting organization
  • Egyptian Society for Mercy to Animals, ESMA
  • Brooke Hospital
  • Arab Federation for Wild Life Protection, AFWP
  • Egyptian Mau Rescue Organization, EMRO
  • ESPWWA, Egypt
  • EUFAR, Egypt unites for Animal Rights
  • SPCA, The Society for preventing Cruelty to animals, Port Said
  • Animal Aid Egypt
  • Animal Protection Foundation
  • The Egyptian Society for Rescuing Animals, Cart

 

 

UAE

 

  • Middle East Animal Foundation

 

 

Palestine

 

  • PWLS, Palestine Wildlife Society

 

 

Turkey

 

  • Animal Right Federation in Turkey

 

 

Iraq – Kurdistan

 

  • Kurdistan Organization of Animal Right Protection

 

 

Bahrain

 

  • BSPCA

 

 

Media (Egypt)

 

  • El Masry El Youm Newspaper
  • Dream channel
  • Egyptian satellite channel

 

 

 

About 70 participants representing 7 countries, gathered in Cairo for the 5 th

International MENAW Conference on “Back on Track” from March 7-9, 2017.

Those attending the Opening Ceremony included HE Prof Dr. Mona Mehrez ,

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture in Charge of Animal Wealth and Poultry and

 

Prof.Dr. Gaber Nasser, President of Cairo University was the guest of the

second day.

 

There were “lively” discussions and debates, as one would expect (and hope

for) at such a conference. The presentations covered companion animals,

wildlife , and farming/livestock issues. Presenters included international and

national NGOs and societies, as well as government officials, judges.

 

Posters in Arabic, and English on a range of animal welfare topics.

 

These posters were posted around the conference hall for all to see and

generate ideas. T

 

And, of course, there was much networking and exchange of ideas and

lessons learned. We also had great lunch menus of vegetarian food. As usual,

there were some rough edges, glitches, schedule changes and sessions that

ran over, but in general the conference went well with the understanding and

flexibility of the participants.

 

The conference adopted a number of recommendations (see separate

resolutions section). And what role MENAW should play was discussed as well

as how MENAW should be structured.

 

Thanks to all the participants and sponsors who made this conference

possible.

 

On behalf of the organizing committee

 

Ahmed El Sherbiny

 

 

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By Sharon St Joan

 

A chance encounter with a big male grizzly bear required quick thinking and some gentle words of persuasion to escape alive. Cougars from one region of Utah have blue eyes and those from other regions don’t. How the jaws and teeth of carnivores actually work. How, sadly, only a few hundred wolverines are left. And a beautifully clear explanation of trophic cascades – the reasons why the eco-system really needs for top predators to be protected, instead of being killed.

 

Kirk Robinson, Executive Director of the Western Wildlife Conservancy, showed slides of magnificent wild animals from all over the American West and Canada too, explaining their natural history and the vital role that they play in nature.

 

On December 3, 2016, he spoke to a packed, attentive crowd at the Best Friends Visitors Center, in Kanab, Utah, as part of Wild Kane County’s series of wildlife programs.

 

In case you missed this terrific talk, if the angels of technology are with us, we’ll soon have a video posted on Youtube that you can watch.

 

Photo: Gary Kalpakoff

 

 

Indian-Wolf Picture via Pavan Kunder

Picture via Pavan Kunder

 

 

First posted on Bodahub, http://bodahub.com/indian-wolf-population-on-the-decline/#more-4272

 

By the Bodahub staff

 

Wolf and man have a millennia-old relationship. They gave us our best friend, the whole culture of the werewolves, and fascinating fare for movies and books.

 

But now, the wolf population in India is on the decline, and we may be causing widespread damage to the environment. Luckily we may have other countries to learn from.

 

The Assault on the Indian Wolf

 

The wolf population is under severe strain in India. Shortages in zoos have led to a brisk exchange program and put pressure on the endangered animals. The Indian wolf can only be found in the wild in two states: Gujarat and Rajasthan.

 

The Jodhpur Zoo recently offered a pair of lions in exchange for a pair of wolves from the Shakkarbagh Zoo in Gujarat. The female of the wolf pair is yet to be delivered. When the Shakkarbagh Zoo was keen on acquiring a pair of tigers from Bangalore, they were asked for a pair of wolves in exchange.

 

The need has created pressure on the wild population, which is already under severe duress. There are an estimated 250 wolves in Gujarat and around 300 in Rajasthan. The Gujarat authorities have set up artificial breeding centres to attempt to revive the population.

 

640px-Wolf picture via Farhan

Picture via Farhan

 

Local farmers consider the wolf a threat to their livestock and do not hesitate to chase them out of their fields or kill them by smoking out their dens. Sometimes, mothers are killed, leaving young cubs behind that cannot fend for themselves. More damage is caused by wild lands being converted to farms, and reduced food sources. Wolves like solitary places and cannot tolerate the human presence. And no, we don’t own the planet…

 

The larger worry though is that wolves play a very important role in the maintenance of the ecosystem. Wolves prey primarily on large ungulates, hoofed mammals. By preying on the most vulnerable (diseased, young, old, weak or injured) individuals, wolves help keep prey populations healthier and more vigorous. Predation by wolves also regulates ungulate distribution and group size, which impact overall native biodiversity.

 

When the ungulate population becomes too abundant for their habitat, for example, they overgraze vegetation, leading to habitat degradation and its incredibly damaging effects on other native wildlife.

 

Populations can be bred artificially, but need to be reintroduced to the wild. The effects of such experiments in the past were wildly successful and should be carefully considered by the Indian wildlife authorities.

 

The Yellowstone Park Experiment

 

When wolves were reintroduced into the Yellowstone National Park, within a short time, they managed to change the course of rivers and affect local and migratory wildlife in a positive way. In short, they completely changed the local ecology and environment – that would have otherwise taken decades of conservation efforts.

 

India could do well to learn from such efforts and emulate them. The effects of reintroducing wolves into the wild may not have the exact same extent of effects, but the benefits are undeniable.

 

But such a move needs to be supported by education, awareness, and compensatory mechanisms for the farmers when they, and their livestock, venture into a wolf’s territory.

 

India has seen a lot of success on that front in different wildlife preserves. Local populations that live on the borders of forests have shown sufficient understanding and are able to coexist with tigers, lions, and leopards.

 

The occasional loss of livestock is part of life and nature’s cycle. But it can be a win-win situation too. Local populations in the foothills of the Himalayas are now getting insurance from NGOs for snow leopard attacks on their livestock. The snow leopard is a critically endangered animal and conflict with humans is simply not acceptable.

 

However, there’s no reason why we need to wait for the wolf to become critically endangered too before we act, is there?

 

 

George Monbiot’s four minute video, How Wolves Change Rivers

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysa5OBhXz-Q

 

 

 

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By Suzanne Cordrey

 

In the heart of the South Luangwa Park in Zambia is Kakuli Safari camp and during my visit there, the guide was a Scottish/Zambian man named Mike. His story is as fascinating as is the bush surrounding the Kakuli camp.

 

Mike was born in Uganda, but quickly whisked back to Scotland as a toddler when Idi Amin was in power. Do you remember that period in history, 1971-9, when the megalomaniac Idi Amin ruled over Uganda? Amongst his many atrocities against his people and the land, all in the name of power and greed, he had enticed a young naive, Scottish doctor into his sphere of power as his personal physician. This man was Mike’s father. As the corruption became worse, Mike’s dad was encouraged to leave and take his family back to Scotland. He had seen things and knew the secrets of Idi Amin’s regime that made him a threat. But it was already too late and Idi Amin suspected such, so he had body guards and henchmen pull the strings tighter around the doctor.

 

There was a movie made later on called The Last King of Scotland starring Forrest Whitaker as Idi Amin and James McAvoy as Mike’s dad, Nicholas Garrigan. It was an account of Mike’s father’s experience with Amin and of the brutality perpetrated by Amin in those days. Mike’s father did manage to get his family back to Scotland, but he almost lost his life trying to leave the country, after being brutally beaten, by sneaking onto a plane with a load of passengers all fearing for their lives and Amin’s henchmen chasing the plane down the runway upon realizing that the physician was on that plane.

 

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This story was told by Mike and only late one evening sitting around the campfire after many had gone to bed, did he tell it to a few of us after much prompting as we wanted to know more about how this enigmatic and intelligent man came to be in the bush of Zambia. None of us realized the horror that his story would entail.

 

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After years in Scotland, Mike was missing his roots in Africa and returned, but long after Amin had been deposed and was living in exile in Lybia and Saudi Arabia. Not being interested in following his father’s footsteps, Mike wandered deep into the bush and found solace in the heartbeat of the nature of Zambia and all her inhabitants there. Mike had become well versed in the behaviors of the animals and took us on several adventures along the river where we encountered some rogue male elephants and once a leopard walking down the path toward us. Knowing the mindset of the animals gave him the understanding of how to respond so that we were never in danger. Guiding visitors through the bush was truly Mike’s calling, as well as his passion. He was able to interpret the activities of the animals without interrupting them, thus, when we came upon a nanny elephant tending three babies in a spot of shade one quiet morning, we could watch without intrusion, and feel the magic of the moment. Africa as you showed it to me will always live in my heart. Thank you, Mike, wherever you are.

 

Photos: Suzanne Cordrey

 

 

Young "Nanny" elephant with three sleeping babies.

Young “nanny” elephant with three sleeping babies.

 

By Suzanne Cordrey

 

Elephants roam the South Luangwa National Park in Zambia, especially in the heat of the dry season where the temperature rises to 102-108 F. There is little water in the Luangwa River, but they herd themselves to the water’s edge, wary of every moment in the edge of the bush, suspecting a lion to emerge at any second.

 

During one such dry season, I was on my trip of a lifetime to Africa and traveling through the bush with a guide and five others on our way to an airstrip, leaving Zambia and all of its inhabitants after spending a thrilling week of animal watching there.  It was mid-morning and already the heat enveloped us in a shroud so uncomfortable that it sucked the vitality quickly from our bodies. We were quenching our thirst on water plus electrolytes, which were growing in short supply and for those of us who had packed a sufficient amount, could have sold the packets for the price of gold. Those people in our group without electrolytes were at our mercy for handouts. Amazing how priorities shift in moments of need. But that morning everyone was feeling good after a breakfast and the sharing of the “gold.”

 

Sitting high up in the open air safari vehicles, bouncing along the sandy rutted track, we cruised lazily through the bush, longing to see the last group of baboons, zebra, waterbuck, giraffe, and of course the beloved elephants. When the guide, who was driving, slowed down and cut the engine off, it was enough of a pattern interrupt that we pulled ourselves back into the present moment, sensing an impending event. All eyes went to the guide, Mike, who was swinging around toward us with his finger to his lips in the sign of silence. The sudden hush amongst us was palpable.  The vehicle rolled to a halt in the middle of the track . Off to the left, standing as if alone in a small shady area amongst the hot dry bush, stood a smallish elephant, a young adult. A teenager. She was swaying back and forth, her trunk brushing from side to side, back and forth, her ears flapping gracefully and slowly. She did not look at us but kept her rhythm and her head down. As our eyes became accustomed to the shade in which she stood, we could see that she was not alone, but with two baby elephants, lying on their sides directly in front of her. It was the constant touch of her trunk that they were enjoying as they slept. Every so often we watched as one would flip his tail or flick a fly with an ear.

 

As we began to understand what we were seeing, our hearts began to melt. A slight gasp of awe arose from several of us. This was a “nanny,” left to watch over the babies as they napped while the rest of the family went to forage in the nearby bush. We could not see them, but knowing how far the low rumble of an elephant call can travel, they were surely close enough. So here she was, “rocking” the babies with her trunk in the stillness of the morning. Such tenderness, this, and quite vulnerable as she really couldn’t defend them from predators.

 

And it became apparent that there was more to this scene.   A tiny baby, less than a year old, was harbored under her body.   She was rocking that baby with her left foot as she swayed as well. Three very young elephants alive and well, peacefully tucked against her body, occasionally twitching as babies do in their sleep.We were witness to a very intimate event in the daily life of an elephant family and we knew it. No one moved a muscle except to click the shutter of cameras. It was being recorded as a moment in time that would resonate for each of us forever.

 

The heat was no longer the issue of the day, the discomfort of the body was forgotten, the emotions of longing and sadness upon leaving our magical camp in Zambia were suspended as we collectively came into the present moment and held on to it as long as we westerners could, since we were so unaccustomed to being in Being. I felt the presence of Grace, pure Grace.

 

Victoria Falls, in Zambia.

Victoria Falls, in Zambia.

 

Nature is full of such moments, yet it is so rare to walk upon them and hold still long enough to get what it is that is going on. But for the five of us travelers from a distant land, and the guide who had the consciousness to recognize what he was seeing before we blundered into it and disrupted it with our business of travel, we got to share moment of true Magic. That is Magic. That is what it is.

 

A female elephant with her baby, in the Congo.

A female elephant with her baby, in the Congo.

 

Top photo: Suzanne Cordrey

 

Second photo: Wikimedia Comons / “This work has been released into the public domain by its author, John Walker. This applies worldwide.” / Victoria Falls, in Zambia.

 

Third photo: Thomas Breuer / Wikimedia Commons/ “This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic license.” / Forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) in the Mbeli River, Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, Congo. Female forest elephant with her baby.

 

 

One of many thousands of community cats spayed or neutered by Lega Pro Animale

One of many thousands of community cats spayed or neutered by Lega Pro Animale

By Dorothea Friz, DVM, Lega Pro Animale

 

The Foundation Mondo Animale offered again during the school year 2014/2015 a free-of-charge project to all lower high schools of the Region of Campania. On the morning of June 3, the project “Animali come Noi” (“Animals and Humans”) ended with awards presented to the students who found the right answer to our quiz at the end of the meetings.

In September 2014, the Foundation – that has been working for years to promote respect for domestic animals, in order to improve their welfare – sent a letter to all lower high schools in the Region of Campania offering interactive meetings with students.

The project was a great success and 15 schools (200 classes, about 4,000 students) from the entire Region of Campania (provinces of Naples, Caserta, Avellino, Salerno, Benevento) took part. Compared with the last school year, the number of schools participating in the Foundation’s new project has doubled. In 100 meetings during 50 school days, the students discussed with the staff of the Foundation the daily needs of dogs. Starting from subjects like appropriate nutrition and care (physiological, psychological and behavioral issues), the students came to nearly professional conclusions, e.g. prevention of diseases, identification/registration of dogs and cats and birth control.

 

Photos: Castel Volturno (Caserta) – Left to right: Antonio Mileo (Foundation Mondo Animale), Carmen’s mother, Carmen’s teacher, the bright Carmen, Dorothea Friz, the Headmistress Mrs Fabozzi and Carmen’s father.

Photos: Castel Volturno (Caserta) – Left to right: Antonio Mileo (Foundation Mondo Animale), Carmen’s mother, Carmen’s teacher, the bright Carmen, Dorothea Friz, the Headmistress Mrs Fabozzi and Carmen’s father.

The Foundation was particularly surprised by the knowledge of the students concerning spaying/neutering as the only method of answering a stray problem. Five students from different schools managed to find the correct answer to our question how many millions of puppies will be born from a couple of dogs in ten years. For this calculation, we assume that: they have litters twice a year with five puppies each, all females will be pregnant again at the age of five months and none of those puppies are going to die.

During the celebration, the Foundation honored the winning students with two books: “Un cane in famiglia” (“The family dog”) of Maria Luisa Cocozza and “Il cane intelligente” (“The intelligent dog”) of Juliane Kaminski.

Everybody was enthusiastic about the project: students, teachers, headmasters and naturally the Foundation. All of them are happily waiting for the beginning of the new school year and the meetings planned in autumn.

 

Links:

www.legaproanimale.com

https://www.facebook.com/LegaProAnimale

https://twitter.com/LegaproAnimale

www.fondazionemondoanimale.com

www.facebook.com/fondazionemondoanimale

https://twitter.com/F_MondoAnimale

 

Photos: Courtesy of Lega Pro Animale

 

 

 

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By Shakuntala and Debashish Majumdar, Thane SPCA

 

Two consignments of 540 Indian Soft Shelled Turtles (Nilssonia Gangetica)  and Spotted Pond Turtles ( Geoclemys Hamiltonii ) were seized by the Mumbai International Airport Air Intelligence Unit. All these Schedule 1 species of turtles were handed over to the Maharashtra Forest Department. The smuggling of these turtles was done in a very cruel manner, which involved packing them in zipper bags, then wrapping them in plastic bags and taping them with transparent adhesive tapes. Various wildlife offences were lodged with the jurisdictional magistrates. The judiciary then accorded its permission to release the seized wildlife in its natural environs in the respective cases.

3. RAWW volunteers cleaning Turtle Tank

 

Thane SPCA and RAWW (Resqink Association for Wildlife Welfare) started coordinating with the Forest Department from the very first hour of seizing the turtles, with logistical help. While RAWW assisted in the physical distribution of the turtles at Dahanu and Karnala and Thane SPCA’s wildlife veterinarian checked each of these turtles for their physical condition, Thane SPCA also admitted the sick ones to their hospital and started to co-ordinate for the most suitable spot for the release of the turtles. This would be the first interstate repatriation of rescued aquatic turtles in the country and needed intense coordination between all parties involved. Finally, Turtle Survival Alliance, an organization dedicated to saving turtles, was identified as the agency for the translocation.

 

The Chief Wildlife Warden and the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife), Uttar Pradesh, accorded his approval for translocation and rehabilitation of the seized turtles at Kukrail Facility, Lucknow, from where, after a suitable quarantine, the turtles would be released in the Sarayu River.

7. Packing Turtles

 

The translocation was carefully planned for May 23, 2015, which happens to be World Turtle Day. To prepare the turtles for the long journey tomorrow (courtesy Air India) each of them were numbered, checked by Dr Deepa Katyal, our wildlife veterinarian and packed individually in netted bags. Each turtle was adequately hydrated and kept comfortably in well ventilated crates. 23 such crates were prepared. They will be hydrated every four to five hours until their unloading at the Cargo point tomorrow. Thane SPCA is privileged to carry the turtles to the airport in their ambulance at the request of the Forest Department.

9. Packed for air lifting

 

Five weeks after they were seized, the turtles will swim free in their own natural habitat, thanks to the incredible example of co-operation between Government departments and the Non Governmental sector, dedicated to saving the lives of these small creatures, so vital for the health of our ecology.

 

We wholeheartedly thank the Deputy Conservator of Forests, Thane Shri K. Thakre and the staff of the Forest Department, the PCCF and CWW (Wildlife), Uttar Pradesh, the officers of Turtle Survival Alliance, Air India and the staff and volunteers of Thane SPCA and RAWW for making this relocation an unprecedented success.

 

Top photo: Howard Cheng / Wikimedia Commons / “This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.” / Spotted Pond Turtle.

Second photo: Courtesy of Thane SPCA / RAWW volunteers cleaning a turtle tank.

Third photo: Courtesy of Thane SPCA / Courtesy of Thane SPCA / Counting, numbering and packing the turtles.

Fourth photo: Courtesy of Thane SPCA / Turtles all packed and ready for airlift.

 

To visit the website of Thane SPCA, click here 

 

To visit the Facebook page of RAWW, click here 

 

© Basphoto | Dreamstime.com - Cat At Ancient Egyptian Temple Photodreamstime_xs_18006751

 

Ismailia City lies in north-eastern Egypt, on the west bank of the Suez Canal. It was founded as the canal was being constructed.

 

On May 4, 2015, ESAF (Egyptian Society of Animal Friends) and Suez Canal University, the Faculty of the Veterinary Medical College, jointly sponsored an awareness program there to highlight animal welfare issues. Kindness to animals was shown to be a part of Islamic teachings. Fliers were handed out and TNR (trap/neuter/return) presentations called for the end of the mass killing of stray animals.

 

ESAF vets, Dr. Marwa Rabah and Dr. Ahmed Mansour, assisted by vet techs, Moh Ibrahim and Shaaban, performed a demonstration spay/neuter surgery on two cats, with the help of the Veterinary Medical Department of Suez Canal College.

 

Mrs. Dina Zulfikar, a dynamic spokesperson on behalf of animals, joined ESAF for this event. Support for the program was provided by WA, Werled Asielin Animal Welfare Society.

 

Ahmed El Sherbiny, Chairperson of ESAF, expressed his gratitude to Professor Mamdouh Ghourab, the Head of Suez Canal University, to Dr. Ibrahim Fares, the Dean of the Suez Canal Veterinary Medical College and to Professor Atef Kamel, the Head of the Wildlife and Zoos Department, for their support of this program.

 

Soon ESAF and the Suez Canal University Faculty of Veterinary Medicine will initiate a project to present the many alternatives that are now available to using animals for experiments in education and training.

 

Every Saturday ESAF conducts a free TNR program at their shelter in Cairo for neighborhood stray animals, sponsored by WA and other ESAF supporters.

 

To visit ESAF on Facebook, click here.  

 

Photo: © Basphoto | Dreamstime.com – Cat At Ancient Egyptian Temple Photo

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Crossposted from Varanasi for Animals

 

April 15, 2015

 

Mrs. Abha Singh of Aashray for Sick and Helpless Animals successfully hosted yet another Animal Birth Control Camp, organized by Varanasi for Animals and funded by Help Animals India, with the kind assistance of HOPE and Animal’s support.

 

We successfully spayed or neutered 21 female and two male dogs in these two days. All the dogs recovered well and were released back to their respective territories. One female community dog was brought by a school parent!

 

Besides 23 ABC’s the vet also performed an eye operation for a “cherry-eyed” dog, who had been suffering for a long time, in front of Mrs. Abha Singh’s house.

 

A Jersey cow had her tibia (hind leg) broken, and she was lifted up with the help of straps and iron pipes along a tree. Thanks to the school staff of Mrs. Singh, around twelve persons slogged for two to three hours to lift the 300 kilogram cow with straps and to rest her midriff on tables with a thick mattress. She is receiving a lot of massage and medication. We pray that she survives this long phase, that her bones reconnect well, and that she’ll be able to get back onto her four legs.

 

Thank you all for your compassionate support; to contribute to future camps please do so through www.helpanimalsindia.org/donate

 

Photo: “Tina” got her operation with your kind support. Mr. Banarasi who works with Abha Singh at Aashray is her loving caretaker in Varanasi.”