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Educational Series

Educational Series: Cruel Animal Circuses Need to Go

By Nick Engelfried In August 1994, a tanker ship that began its journey in California arrived in Honolulu, Hawaii with a massive prisoner in its hull. Tyke was an African elephant who was born in Mozambique, but was captured from the wild when she was a baby and spent most […]

Educational Series: The Illegal Bird Trade is a Wildlife Tragedy

By Nick Engelfried Birds are among nature’s most beautiful animals, and it’s no wonder countless people are drawn to the idea of having one in their home. The U.S. is believed to be home to more than 40 million pet parrots, alone, and birds are considered the country’s most popular […]

Educational Series: Massive Wildfires are Burning Wild Animals Alive

By Nick Engelfried From the Pacific Northwest, to New York, to New England, vast areas of the United States have already suffered this summer from smoky conditions caused by raging wildfires, largely located in Canada. In early June, the smoke blanketing New York City resulted in the metropolitan area temporarily […]

Educational Series: It’s Time to Stop Raising and Killing Animals for Fur

By Nick Engelfried Fur farms, where hundreds of animals spend their entire lives in cramped wire cages before being brutally killed for their skins, are among the fashion industry’s cruelest secrets. Approximately 100 million animals including mink, foxes, chinchillas, rabbits, and raccoon dogs are raised and slaughtered on fur farms […]

Educational Series: Save Giraffes From a Silent Extinction

By Nick Engelfried Towering above vast herds of wildlife on the African plains, giraffes are among the most distinctly recognizable animals on Earth. Their famously long necks can hardly help but make them stand out, and their immense size earns them a place on a select list of herbivore species […]

Educational Series: Stop Imprisoning Hens in Tiny, Torturous ‘Battery Cages’

By Nick Engelfried Imagine spending almost your entire life crammed in a space so small and crowded that you can barely turn around. It sounds like a nightmare–but this grim fate represents reality for millions of hens on industrial egg farms who are kept in the cruel devices known as […]

Educational Series: Critically Endangered Animals Need Our Help Before it’s Too Late

By Nick Engelfried The world is facing a biodiversity extinction crisis unlike anything that has happened for millions of years. From climate change caused by burning fossil fuels, to the destruction of habitat to make way for agriculture and development, human activities threaten almost every major ecosystem on Earth and […]

Educational Series: North America’s Rarest Cats Need Our Help

By Nick Engelfried Majestic, beautiful, and famously elusive, wild cats are among the most regal predators to roam the world’s forests, grasslands, and deserts. Lists of wild cat species native to North America commonly include three members: the cougar, bobcat, and lynx, all of which are found over large geographic […]

Educational Series: End the Horrors of Live Animal Exports

By Nick Engelfried Hundreds of terrified sheep are herded onto a ship chartered for a distant port. During the next few weeks, the animals will live in cramped, filthy conditions surrounded by their own feces while enduring massive temperature swings as the weather varies from suffocatingly hot to freezing cold. […]

Educational Series: It’s Time to Stop Killing and Persecuting Coyotes

By Nick Engelfried With the exception of the domestic dog, no member of the canine family is more closely associated with humans in North America than the coyote. Larger and more powerful than a fox, but smaller than a wolf, at about 25-35 pounds a typical coyote could be easily […]

Educational Series: Long Targeted for Extermination, Prairie Dogs Need Our Help

By Nick Engelfried Imagine a species that lives in towns of hundreds or thousands of individuals; that changes the surrounding landscape in profound ways; and in which individuals communicate with one another using a complex spoken language. This description may sound like it refers to human beings–but it also applies […]

Educational Series: Rodents Are Intelligent, Sensitive Animals, Not Fodder for Experiments

Animal research labs–where scientists perform experiments on living creatures to develop products or procedures for use on humans–have long been a major focus for animal welfare advocates. Images of monkeys and apes in tiny cages, dogs forced to undergo painful operations, or cats being injected with chemicals are almost certain […]

Educational Series: Incredible Kelp Forests With Countless Marine Animals are Facing Destruction

By Nick Engelfried Submerged beneath the waves, just a short ways from the shore along many parts of North America’s Pacific Coast, forests 150 feet or more in height sway gently back and forth with the tides. As impressive in their way as the Douglas-fir and redwood trees growing on […]

Educational Series: Wildlife Killing Contests are a Senseless Celebration of Slaughter and Cruelty

By Nick Engelfried Every year, in more than 40 states, countless numbers of wild coyotes, foxes, bobcats, rabbits, prairie dogs, and other wildlife are hunted down and murdered like trophies as part of legalized “killing contests.” These cruel events, which are largely unregulated and unfold far from the public view, […]

Educational Series: It’s Time to Stop Treating Pigs as Walking Meat

By Nick Engelfried More than probably any other animal species, pigs are considered by countless people around the world to be practically synonymous with meat. In the U.S. alone, approximately 120 million pigs are slaughtered every year to make ham, sausage, and other meat products consumers love. Yet, what is […]

Educational Series: Cougars Need Our Help After Centuries of Persecution

By Nick Engelfried Cougars, the largest wild cat historically found throughout North America, are also one of the most elusive and misunderstood of the continent’s mammals. Sometimes known by the alternative names mountain lion, puma, or panther, these feline predators seldom want to have anything to do with people–but human […]

Educational Series: Orcas, Majestic Predators of the Oceans, Need Our Help to Survive

By Nick Engelfried Few animals possess the ability to call up as many, often conflicting emotions in human beings as the orca. Sometimes known as “killer whales,” these remarkable creatures have sometimes been portrayed as killing machines that are to be feared for their adeptness as predators. More recently, growing […]

Educational Series: Animals at Roadside Zoos Endure Lives of Misery

By Nick Engelfried Zoos can be a fraught topic for people in the animal welfare and conservation world. Some maintain that properly run zoos serve important functions breeding endangered species and providing homes for animals who are no longer able to survive in the wild. Other animal advocates would rather […]

Educational Series: Overfishing is a Crisis for Marine Life

By Nick Engelfried The oceans are one of Earth’s great strongholds of biodiversity, home to hundreds of thousands of animal and plant species. From microscopic plankton to giant blue whales–the largest animals that ever existed–life in the oceans takes on a dizzying array of shapes and forms. Marine ecosystems are […]

Educational Series: Old Growth Forests and Their Animal Inhabitants are Disappearing

By Nick Engelfried When European colonists first arrived in North America, much of the continent was covered in ancient trees hundreds or even thousands of years old. Since the end of the last ice age, forests extended over vast swaths of what are now the United States and Canada, providing […]

Educational Series: Shy, Elusive Wolverines Are Clinging to Survival

By Nick Engelfried Solitary, powerful, and mysterious, wolverines have captured the imaginations of animal lovers around the world like few other creatures. Because of their extremely low population densities and tendency to avoid humans, few people will ever have the chance to see a wild wolverine in its natural habitat. […]

Educational Series: Pet Rabbits Need Space and Compassion, Not Cages

By Nick Engelfried With their cute appearance and docile reputation, domestic rabbits are one of the most popular pets in the United States, second only to cats and dogs. There is much to love about rabbits–however, many people who bring one home do not realize how much care and attention […]

Educational Series: Tasmanian Devils: Long-Persecuted and in Need of Help

By Nick Engelfried Few animals are as widely misunderstood as the Tasmanian devil, a species made famous by Looney Tunes, but which bears little resemblance to its cartoon namesake. Found only on the remote island of Tasmania off the southern tip of Australia, Tasmanian devils are in fact shy and […]

Educational Series: Tar Sands are a Wildlife Catastrophe

By Nick Engelfried Not far north of the contiguous U.S. border lies one of the largest industrial projects in human history, situated on top of one of the planet’s biggest petroleum deposits: the Canadian tar sands. In the tar sands, massive pieces of machinery mine the earth for a low-quality […]

Educational Series: Sea Turtles, Ancient Survivors of the Oceans, Could Soon be Extinct

By Nick Engelfried With evolutionary origins stretching back to the age of the dinosaurs, sea turtles are one of the oldest groups of large animals alive today. They range throughout the world’s oceans, venturing onto land only to lay their eggs, and are among the most beautiful and majestic of […]

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