Category Archives: All about Animals

This – obviously – is about animals, domestic and wild. It will center mostly around my animal experiences that have been successful through divine intervention, IMHO. It is up to the individual reader, whether they decide it was random coincidences that just happened to all come together at exactly the right moment, for a successful outcome… or … something greater was involved. It’s subjective interpretation.

Wild Horse Slaughter Rant

Where are the environmental voices of influence.  Where is Hollywood?  Where are all the loud-mouth, bigger than life – opinionated – *forces for good* that are so quiet the silence is deafening.

I cannot separate the US government from the tragedy that is unfolding RIGHT BEFORE OUR EYES.  The US government is taking taxpayer dollars and waging a war on the wild horses and burros of this country .. and 80% of the population is OPPOSED.   The media is JUST STARTING TO WAKE UP.  Ken Salazar started the assault — and it has escalated under the new “czar”.   I just got an email this morning about the President’s trip abroad.

“In a visit to Tanzania, the President launched a poaching crackdown, dedicating the United States to fighting back against poachers and criminal wildlife traffickers.” 

Mr. President – with all due respect – the wild horse slaughter is happening in your own backyard.  This is happening under the direction of someone YOU appointed — and with one word you could stop this.

Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Duncan Hunter, Jr. —- how can you permit this?  80% of the people YOU SERVE are opposed to this and somehow, this massacre keeps going.  Helicopters, sharpshooters —-  what the hell is going on here?

The USDA has decided to start killing horses for meat.  Am I living in the United States?  Over 90% of the population opposes that.  DOES ANYONE SEE A PATTERN HERE?

This administration – ALL OF IT – delights in doing JUST THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT THE PEOPLE WANT.  Mr. Obama … you scare me more than George Bush did.  You are indifferent, distant, removed and selectively ignorant.

Exotic Animal Park Owner – CBS This Morning

This is a case – IMHO – of just because you can, doesn’t make you right.  This is an exotic animal *owner*… lions, tigers, etc.  The HSUS is getting involved.  The owner says “it’s his right” — and I beg to differ.  Just because you can have 80 large cats on your property … doesn’t mean you should or you are right.  Just means you can.  Being located in *tornado alley* is a prime factor in my book.  How do you adequately protect these animals from horrible injuries if you can’t relocate them to safety?  I have the same issues with horse owners out here in the east county of San Diego that couldn’t relocate their horses during the wildfires.  Every horse owner should be required to own a trailer suitable for his horses or livestock.  People were up in arms over humans dying in the fires… but little mention of the millions of animals and number of horses that died as a result.  The wildlife we can’t do anything about … but animals that are in our possession rely on our being able to *protect them*.  Food, shelter, protection…. this man may have every “legal right” to possess these animals — but in the event of an emergency —- what provisions has he made to ensure their safety.  Just where do you stuff 80 large cats (and other animals) that are in cages?  I am not one of those “born free” people.  Animals in the wild stand less a chance of survival especially when the modern age is their challenge.  Animal – Car – Animal loses.

But if Charlie Rose, CBS and the HSUS are going to intervene — how about shutting down — by federal legislation — *Canned Hunt* facilities in the western united states.  It is disgusting.  How about stopping the sensationalism of hunting alligators by Geo, Discover, whatever.  We sure could use Steve Irwin on this.

Anyway, for those who are interested, here’s the link :

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=7408708n&tag=mg;cbsthismorning

Cooperation Between Enemies Against Public Enemy #1

 

 

Hawks and crows have a well known antagonistic relationship. Crows will pack together to bait – literally – a hawk to the point of response.  Hawks prey on young crows – and all crows have as a defense against hawks… is intelligence.

I wrote about the mating of our Coopers Hawks yesterday, and this morning Isaboe and mate were absolutely frantic giving their “too close to nest/danger” call (go to Cornell’s All About Birds and you can hear their distinctive calls).  At the same time, the crows were starting to behave raucously.  I had my coffee and observed what was taking place.  Who were the aggressors, what was their behavior, blah blah.   It became apparent that something was uniting the efforts of the hawks and crows into bombarding the tall palm (about 60 ft. in air) and I quickly retrieved my binoculars (I have three pair – upstairs, back and front of house).

Sure enough, there on the palm was the Great Horned Owl that predates on young hawks, crows, skunks… and anything else it fancies.  In the bird world… I think Owls are the Edward G. Robinson of the bird world… Public Enemy #1.  Now you figure I’m about 300 feet from the palm, that is about 55′ tall… and this kid is BIG.  Usually during the day he/she retreats to the denser foliage of some local pine and waits out the day.  This morning, he/she was where the Barn Owls used to have a nest (and raised a couple of broods).  Haven’t heard them lately so I hope nothing bad happened and they just sought nicer digs.  I have seen them with flashlight in hand at night, but I heard them more than I ever saw them (they would fly past the window upstairs at night.  I think their call very eerie (http://www.allaboutbirds.org/Page.aspx?pid=1189)

I have witnessed this behavior many times before when a common enemy comes into their community.  Red Shoulders and Red Tails are received with equal hostility.

In closing, the efforts were successful, and when the owl decided enough is enough… it took off (huge wing span) – with hawks and crows en mass on tail – harassing it loudly and zipping about to intimidate (sort of).

Then all became quiet…. and once again peace came to the land.

The Divine Sense of Humor…

Just witnessed Isaboe and her stud muffin mating. I wrote years ago that I know that *the divine* has a warped sense of humor and it isn’t just because of the Platypus.  I moved to a resort environment, that stays green pretty well all year long.  I have the green and trees that I need to feel *healthy* (I cannot be in a city environment too long… it gives me a headache)… and a broad variety of magnificent song birds.  I live in a paradise (for me).   Then smack dab in the middle of it, about 8 years ago, Isaboe (that’s what I call her after the movie LadyHawke) (sp?) moved in and decided to become an active and contributing member of our society and community by having very successful breedingings (UGH). We have contributed at least 16 new cooper hawks (more if all survived, 16 if only two survived per brood).  Oh wow… she just flew in for a bath…)

anyway…

How am I able to write this real-time?  I’m in my home office, creating and writing some pieces for my business blog and my client’s marketing, and my desk looks out over the commons.  The window is 6′ wide so I have an unobstructed view of the commons… and the hills behind it.  There are a couple of tall liquid ambers and syacamores that the hawks favor for hunting (no surprise there) but this is the first time in 13 years I have actually seen the ritual start to finish.  This also means I will, once again, watch the little ones with the training-wheel wings and listen to their totally irritating *squeal* that affects me like nails on a chalkboard.  Every time they accomplish something new, it’s like hearing “look ma, no wings…” and they get all excited.  Then there is the distinct hysteria that surrounds feedings.  I always know when Isaboe has brought food to the table.  (sigh).  She has her favorite trees for the actual nest.  Eucalyptus.  We have some very large canopy Eucalyptus… and I can watch her with binoculars as she builds her next.

I am not one of those who settles for the “it’s nature”, when something is killed.  I hate the process.  One time (in the early days) my new husband said to me (after something that distressed me with animals) “It’s nature so you have to accept it.” and I responded ” no i don’t.  Who said?   My personal motto is muddle where possible.  If I can save a dove, or a spider, or a snake or a lizard or a canary… I will.  That’s my role.  And as for “accepting it”, I don’t.  It sucks, and when I cross over, if there is an afterlife, and whoever is in charge of wildlife and the b.s. survival of the fittest… I am going to walk up to them as said “what were you thinking?” (and a slap on the side of the head).”

When people are surprised at my level of emotion, and to the extent I will go to help animals, wildlife and domestic, for some crazy reason they feel free to let me know that they think it is wee bit obsessive, overly-emotional, and one-foot in eccentric… and that it is almost a liability in their eyes.  They don’t necessarily say it in words.  They use the facial and physical expressions to convey their opinions too.  Personally I can’t understand them at all, or anyone who doesn’t feel this way.  I’m interested and emotionally involved with everything – whether it directly affects me or not.  If I am given the chance to intervene, I will.  I do not like, approve or want to witness the predator/prey dramas on TV or in real-life. It’s downright horrifying to me; my glasses are rose-colored.  I am equally passionate about trees and plants.   I had a HOA board member say to me, after my furor over the unnecessary cutting of healthy trees (that were not doing any harm whatsoever to anyone or anything) that my response was, in her opinion, obsessive – and they are just trees  and I responded “really –  then it shouldn’t surprise you that I think you are as shallow as a thimble.  That shocked her.  Hmmmm.

My husband is no longer surprised at some of the stuff that I get *me/him/us* involved in.  (Poor sweet adorable guy).  He says “You don’t surprise me, amaze, yes, surprise, no”.  I also have said for years that if I am ever injured or killed on a roadway, you can bet your sweet ass an animal had something to do with it.  Not so long ago, we were returning home, and in the distance I saw a small black dog who appeared (to me) to be unfamiliar or confused on the side of the road.  As we were riding by, I said “stop the car” (several fast times) … and as he slowed down (much to my husband’s horror) I jumped out… ran back and just as the dog was starting to walk into the roadway … I swept her up — (and yes, cars were coming on both on amaya and water sts. and I had a window of opportunity so I took it without hesitation). Dangerous – yeah – if that dog had been aggressive, I might have been hurt – but it wasn’t and we eventually found it’s owners and yes, it had been lost from quite a distance away while it was being cared for by a family member.  But the fact is, something has guided me my whole life.

This is all part of this divine inner voice that Socrates spoke of.  He said “… and it has stopped me in the very act of doing something if it was not for my greater good.”  — likewise, for me, if I don’t listen to it, the results are almost always bad.  I have come to respect the divine inner voice.  I have spent a lifetime of being in positions of doing something or doing nothing – where I had to make a choice – and I opted on behalf of animals, plants and sometimes, even people.  So far, so good.

California Firestorm, 2003 : Anatomy of a Fire

I have not been terrified, saddened, frustrated, angry, confused – all at one time – except during the Firestorm in 2003.  It was my awakening on so many levels, and profoundly changed my life.  Nothing made sense.  Now, with this blog, I can start to put in writing what my seven plus years of research has yielded.  Remember, I am only examining the facts.  I use their words, articles, reports.  I’ll let you make your own conclusion.  It all began in October 2003 with the fires.  Here is my thoughts in April 2004 when I started recording information and compiling it.

History:

My background in investigative research, advocacy and activism spans more than 30 years and is fueled by my belief in the very tenets that make this country great.  As a citizen, I possess the right to question and challenge any ‘authority’ that does not act in our best interest.  The events that led up to, during, and after the Firestorm that engulfed San Diego County has amplified my commitment to investigate local, state and federal authorities that failed and even obstructed efforts to defend our wildlands, wildlife and residents.

It is my assertion that the California 2003 Firestorm that consumed more than 750,000 acres and killed 24 people was preventable.  I further assert that,

The public and media were deliberately fed disinformation on the local, state and federal level that knowingly put the public at risk,
State agencies deliberately deceived the pubic on firefighting resources available,
Firefighting agencies did not proactively attack these fires, putting the public at risk,
Negligence in providing adequate ‘first-alert’ systems or alerting media
State Firefighting agencies suppressed local efforts to fight the fire,

While the CDF and related state agencies assert they did the best they could, they concede that the loss of wildlands, wildlife and residents was a regrettable consequence of the fire (see Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission report), however, overall they consider their efforts successful.

Based on my research and knowledge – this is not true.  There are and were massive state and federal resources available that were established under the National Fire Plan. In particular, ESF#4 clearly identifies lead agencies, support agencies and their individual responsibilities in detecting and suppressing fires.  These agencies function under the Federal Response Plan, and were specifically created in order to ensure efficient and effective response mechanisms and seamless communications.  They include the United States Fire Commission (Dept of Homeland Security), Office of Aircraft Services (DoI), Dept. of Commerce, Dept. of Defense, United States Forest Service, (DoA), US Fish & Wildlife (DoI), National Park Service (DoI) Bureau of Land Management (DoI) Bureau of Indian Affairs (DoI), etc.

Sources and Compelling Observations:

The United States is currently under an ‘elevated’ (yellow) status of alert,
12 fires from Ventura County to Otay were of ‘suspicious origin’ (not lightning)
DHS considers ‘fire’ a credible threat by terrorists,
All 12 fires began within 5 days of each other,
Incident Reports for Cedar Fire (10/25 – 12/4) showing latitude and longitude
Initial Cedar Fire report neglects to mention impending Santa Ana winds
Aerial extraction of hunter real-time but no fire response
Purpose and scope of CFCG (California Fires Coordination Group) Washington, DC
Purpose and scope of NIFC (National Interagency Fire Center) Boise, Idaho
National Fire Plan Doctrine
$483M in Federal assistance channeled into California post fire
FEMA report into DHS

Initial Findings:

Either every agency from the federal level to local municipalities failed to coordinate and communicate effective response mechanisms, and demonstrated massive incompetence and indifference

or

These fires were deliberately allowed to grow.

Personal Thought from December 7, 2010

Once again “wildlife management” (the greatest oxymoron in U.S. lingo) has allowed a situation to grow to a ‘perceived’ level of urgency.   The trauma of this type of event in wildlife is devastating … for the animals (all animals) and humans that are totally opposed.

I wish you – and others – would become familiar with The American Hunting Myth by Ron Baker.   Rick – wildlife management of the park clearly wasn’t doing the right thing… for years… otherwise we wouldn’t have this conflict NOW.  To use the homeless as an excuse to have a hunt “aawww… let’s be nice and kill deer that we have allowed to grow in numbers… and use the homeless as a justification…” is one of the ROUTINE justifications.  The public also has a right to have witnesses to this hunt.

Once again — our government who is totally indebted to us for their existence – is telling US – the American People .. no you can’t stop this and no you can’t watch us either.  We’re the ones in control.  These agencies (local and federal) are funded by our hard-earned tax dollars.  The USF&W, EPA, DOA etc., are not friends of animals, Rick.  Please do not become fooled by their speak.  The so-called park management has allowed this to happen — and now the deer are the ones to be killed.   Realize something — many of us who were former conservatives have a jaundice about the federal government. I don’t believe them and I do not trust their word … especially when it comes to so-called “wildlife management”.  To them — this is a SPORT!!!!

IMHO

With all due respect — what is going on here?  Every day, I see this government more and more out of control.  The DOI and its daughter agencies are, in my opinion, an enemy of the people.

When the US Congress unanimously passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act in 1971, America’s wild horses roamed on 53,518,146 acres of Western rangeland.

Today, the Bureau of Land Management (the primary agency charged with managing and protecting our wild horses and burros) manages wild horses and burros on 34,340,678 acres – a decrease of more than 35%. This stunning land loss is the direct result of erroneous management and decision making by the BLM.

Despite the BLM’s claim regarding the number of wild horses, there is no accurate count of wild horses on public lands. In 2008, the BLM’s best guess put the number at 29,644 wild horses and 3,461 wild burros, totaling 33,105 wild horses and burros.

The BLM complains that wild horses are competing with livestock and damaging the environment, but there are an estimated 8 million livestock grazing on approximately 235 million acres of federal public lands in 11 western states. The vast majority of all BLM administered lands (92%) is leased for livestock grazing.

Over 10 years ago the BLM established long-term holding facilities to provide care for these animals until they could be adopted or lifetime care for those animals deemed “unadoptable” instead of operating a responsible management strategy to protect wild horses and burros on the range.

The idea was to guarantee the welfare of these animals, but the program has become so unbalanced that the BLM now spends more than half of its annual budget simply warehousing horses unnecessarily. Strapped for cash and insisting that more horses need to be removed from the range, the BLM is now proposing mass euthanasia of warehoused wild horses.

Not only will the BLM have wasted over 100 million taxpayer dollars spent on animal care, but also the agency will be killing the very horses the Americans have given them the budget – our taxpayer dollars – to PROTECT and CARE FOR.