2007 Big Cat Rescue is International in its Scope of Services
Big Cat Rescue’s vision is a world where the animals we share it with are treated with respect and caring and where habitat is preserved to insure the indefinite future survival of these wonderful gifts of nature. In creating such a world, we hope the same principles of respect and caring will carry over to the way humans treat each other.
Care of our cats. The narrow mission of Big Cat Rescue is to provide the best permanent home we can for the cats in our care. We do this by building enclosures in a very natural habitat with foliage and shelter on our 45 acre site, by providing the best nutritional and medical care possible, and by having active operant conditioning and enrichment programs to provide for their physical and psychological well being.
Education. The broader mission of the sanctuary is to reduce the number of cats that suffer the fate of abandonment and/or abuse and to encourage preservation of habitat and wildlife. We urge people to behave in a way that will support these goals by teaching people about the plight of the cats, both in the wild and in captivity. We accomplish this through educational guided tours, educational programs for young people, and by maintaining a website that we believe is the world’s largest and best resource for information about exotic cats.
In order to reach these goals we provide a number of services. We provide a permanent retirement home to over 100 exotic cats who were unwanted, abandoned or abused. This facility is known, world wide, as Big Cat Rescue and located in Tampa, Florida. The animals who live here were rescued from fur farms, circus and night club acts, pet owners, zoos and research laboratories. Unlike any other big cat sanctuary our residents all live in spacious enclosures that typically exceed 1200 square feet and which include trees, bushes and lots of things for a busy cat to enjoy.
Volunteers: We have 120 volunteers, but it only takes one, like Daphne Butters, who lives in England and has been coming to Big Cat Rescue annually since 2001, to make a big impact internationally. Whilst here, she works on site, but more importantly, she takes her experiences and knowledge gained at Big Cat Rescue and uses it in various educational environments in Great Britain.
She started by writing articles about her experiences for publication in cat magazines, including The Maine Coon Cat Club Newsletter, Norwegian Forest Cat Club Newsletter, Seal & Blue Birman Cat Club Magazine and most recently, Our Cats Magazine. As well as being entertaining, these articles were written to educate cat lovers about the plight of unwanted exotic cats in the USA. This was particularly alien to British readers, since the laws in the UK are much stricter and individuals cannot own an exotic cat without a specific license , making it impossible for most people to own a big cat. Articles have appeared in the following Maine Coon Cat Club Newsletters: Spring 2002, Winter 2003, Winter 2004, Spring 2005, Winter 2006 and Spring 2007. According to feedback, these articles have been very informative in terms of the difficulties of keeping big cats. The first issue of a series of her Big Cat Rescue articles appeared in Our Cats magazine, issue 1102, 3rd November 2006, catering for a wide audience in England who are interested in domestic cats.
Daphne works at Fir Vale School, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, a school catering to children aged 11 to 16 years. Many of her students come from poor areas, some are refugees and a considerable number have English as a second or alternative language (ESOL). This means that engagement in the classroom is often difficult since the children do not understand the English language well. Most have no pets and have never touched a domestic cat. They care little about the environment or the effect of poaching, climate change or deforestation on the planet. Solomon’s Cat, a play by David Holman which follows the adventures of a young Tanzanian boy as he tries to save a leopardess from poachers and fur traders, is widely used in her school as a teaching book. After finishing the book, Daphne is invited into the class to talk to students about Big Cat Rescue (aided by photographs and video that she has taken at the sanctuary, since visual aids are vitally important to ESOL students). She then discusses extinction and conservation, finishing off by asking students to visit the Big Cat Rescue website, choose a cat and prepare a PowerPoint Presentation on the animal to include diet, size, habitat and vulnerability in the wild. This encourages students to carry out independent learning, improves their English language and their IT skills. Students become passionate about their chosen cat when they deliver their presentations to the rest of the class during the following lesson. In some students, this instigates an interest in animals, which the school supports by running a zoology club, under Daphne’s supervision.
Continuously from 2002-2007, Daphne taught a course on animal care to a group of low ability students, who were incapable of following a standard curriculum timetable, either because of language difficulties or behavioral problems. This included a module on animal welfare including wild animals in captivity and conservation in the wild and much of the module was based on information from Big Cat Rescue, including cage construction and enrichment. As part of this, the students had to design an enrichment toy for a cat. This was done after watching video taken at Big Cat Rescue, showing cats being given various forms of enrichment including pumpkins, balls, and scent impregnated paper bags. The students all successfully gained an OCN Level 1 qualification in Improve Own Learning and also an ASDAN Bronze Award qualification ( UK recognized qualifications). For most, this was the only qualification they left school with, and it helped to build up their esteem and encourage them to apply to go on to further education as well as develop an interest in animal care.
All state run schools in the UK follow the National Curriculum. At Key Stage 3 (11-14 years) an area of study is ‘Living Things in Their Environment and Feeding relationships’. Within the science department at Fir Vale, Daphne teaches students about this subject using examples of animals at Big Cat Rescue, such as why wild cats are living closer to civilization because their natural habitat is being destroyed (e.g. Faith the bobcat’s story). Using true stories and actual video from Big Cat Rescue helps the children to understand the impact of human civilization development and has proved to be much more effective than using the textbooks alone. They particularly like Faith’s story since it has a positive ending when she is released back into the wild. It has been noted that exam results in this area have improved since this teaching method was included.
Daphne says that thanks to the knowledge and experiences gained at Big Cat Rescue, hundreds of students have benefited educationally over the last six years and are now much more aware of conservation issues worldwide, including ethical and financial problems, such as the plight of snow leopards and humans in the Himalayas. She has organized debates between groups of students relating to this subject, and in particular, students at Fir Vale have a special interest in this area of the world since many are of Pakistani background.
Other schools in the Sheffield area are now becoming interested in the work that Daphne does at Fir Vale and she has been invited to visit other educational establishments to give talks about the zoology club and conservation, again giving presentations on the work of Big Cat Rescue. After discussion with the school’s senior management, it was felt this educational area would be of interest to many schools and Daphne is currently in negotiations with other schools in Sheffield, enabling her to give talks to younger pupils (5-11 years) to help them to understand and develop an interest in conservation and correct animal care, from an early age.
Something which started as a visit to an exotic cat sanctuary back in 2001 has now impacted on children in the UK, as well as adults though articles they have read. Daphne hopes to continue to expand her use of Big Cat Rescue resources to engage people, especially children which are our future generations, in developing a much greater interest in conservation worldwide. The most important thing to note here is that Daphne is just one volunteer who has taken that passion out to other countries to share it with her kinsmen.
Big Cat Rescue Interns
Interns: Big Cat Rescue hosts up to a dozen interns from around the globe for three month sessions. There is no charge to the intern and housing, transportation and one night a week of social integration into the world outside our gates is provided. An on site volunteer serves as a “den mother” to be sure that they eat, clean their rooms, do their laundry and have a great time.
During their time here, interns not only learn the best practices in animal care, they learn compassion for the animals as sentient beings and they learn how to get along with each other. They learn each others customs and how to appreciate the value that each brings to the situation. Before their time is up, they will have learned responsibility, gentleness, teamwork, self reliance, proper feeding and handling methods of wild carnivores and operant conditioning. Interns are encouraged to stay current on conservation issues, and are taken out weekly to learn how to track animals in the wild and learn the names and uses of the plant species they encounter. Interns will be capable of leading tours, public speaking, gift shop sales duties, customer services and a host of other skills that will enable them to earn a living that will enable them to give back to the animals and nature. It is the best way that we can seed the planet with people who have respect and consideration for all life.
The following is a list of interns from around the globe in 2006-2007 who were selected by Big Cat Rescue as the best candidates to come spend 3 months on site. Service dates are listed as date arrived-date departed.
Victoria Mathieson Cheshire, England 6/3/06 – 9/3/06
Sean Ramsdell Ashburnham, MA 9/2/06 – 12/2/06
Laura Witheyman W. Sussex, England 9/16/06 – 12/16/06
Chris Poole Nottingham, United Kingdom 9/16/06 – 12/16/06
Heidi Rowley Valley Center, CA 11/4/06 – 12/4/06
Shana Snowchowski Boulder, CO 11/11/06 – 5/11/07
Sydney Cheong Singapore, Singapore 1/28/07 – 2/28/07
Kelli Crockett Marrieta, GA 1/20/07 – 3/20/07
Raju Naik Gaithersberg, MD 1/6/07 – 4/6/07
Claire Fellman Starkville, MS 1/6/07 – 4/6/07
Claudia Perryman Sussex, England 2/18/06 – 5/18/06
Margi Shah Ontario, Canada 9/16/06 – 12/16/06
Beth Wlaz Annapolis, MD 3/31/07 – 6/30/07
Mike Ingrassia Macomb, IL 5/18/07 – 8/18/07
Alex Irairte Gainesville, FL 5/11/07 – 8/11/07
Nate Carr Plains, PA 5/11/07 – 8/11/07
Daria Flushing, NY 5/18/07 – 8/18/07
Siobhan Simmonds St. Cloud, FL 6/2/07 – 9/2/07
Robyn Kirkwood Menlow Park, CA 8/11/07 – 11/11/07
Amanda Capobianco E. Northport, NY 8/18/17 – 11/18/07
Nicole Perkins Woodbridge, CT 8/18/17 – 11/18/07
S.A.F.E. in the Wild
Saving Animals From Extinction in the Wild is a program whereby Big Cat Rescue supports conservation efforts around the world. Our web site addresses local and global concerns about environment and has over 12,000 pages of information, movie clips, sounds, safe interactive online games with a conservation theme and photos. The web site gets more than 32,000 unique visitors per day and in any given week the visitors will be roughly 34% from countries outside of the U.S. as you can see from this breakdown from a random week in 2006:
United States 25,620, United Kingdom 3,861, Canada 2,708, Australia 1,993, India 435, New Zealand 341, Germany 253, South Africa 225, Netherlands 131 and France124. The information provided has helped wildlife rehabilitators identify animals and obtain proper care instruction, helped officials in smuggling cases to identify rare species of exotic cats being illegally traded and those are just a few of the ways that we know the site has had an impact this year.
In addition to providing information about conservation efforts around the world, Big Cat Rescue has actually funded some and provided services in others. In 2006 5% of the proceeds from our annual gala, The Fur Ball, were donated to these conservation projects and the same is being done in 2007. It is our intent to do so every year.
Africa: In 2005 through 2007 Big Cat Rescue has provided both funds and volunteers to the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya . Lewa relocates problematic wildlife to protected areas and provides education to children in the area who would not otherwise be able to read or write. In addition to the funds that Big Cat Rescue donates, we also provide a U.S. market for Kenya ‘s craftsmen and send clothing with our volunteers to distribute when they visit. Our volunteers, just like Daphne Butters above, take their skills and attitudes of compassion for all life into these barren regions and share a message of hope.
China, India, Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia and Pakistan: Every year since 1997 Big Cat Rescue has donated to the countries that are home to the Himalayan mountain range where the elusive snow leopard is found. One whole corner of the gift shop explains how the sale of items made by the villagers helps save the snow leopard in the wild. In 2006, Dr. Tom McCarthy, the Conservation Director for the Snow Leopard Trust, came to Big Cat Rescue to explain just how crucial each sale was to protect of these exquisite cats. On September 27, 2006 the Executive Director of the Snow Leopard Trust, Brad Rutherford, came to Big Cat Rescue to tell us more about the work that is being done to save the snow leopard from the aspect of building relationships.
The snow leopard lives in regions where the average person makes the equivalent of $1.00 per day. Most of the people who share the same highlands with the snow leopard are herders and to them, the loss of one sheep or goat can mean the difference in their survival. Most of the snow leopards that are killed are retribution killings; meaning that the cat has been blamed for killing one of the herd and the herdsman has killed the next snow leopard he saw. The herdsman can eat the cat and sell the hide for 25.00 which for them is a month’s wage. There are many other middle men along the way who are anxious to get their hands on a snow leopard pelt or penis for the Asian medicinal trade or for the black market. The pelt dramatically becomes more valuable as it goes down the line and can cost $5,000.00 or more to the final buyer. Brad pointed out, that it is a good thing that the dead animal is worth so little to the people who are most responsible for killing them however as that makes this practice far more financially feasible to stop.
The Snow Leopard Trust members in China, India, Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia and Pakistan work closely with the local people to find out what they need. In some cases, they can create handicrafts like those we sell and make five times what they can make from herding. Over the years, the Snow Leopard Trust has brought in marketing people and craftsmen to show the local people how to create items that are marketable.
The programs are structured with reducing reliance on Snow Leopard Trust funds for each consecutive year and to remain in the program the community must ensure that no snow leopards are killed. If anyone in the community kills a snow leopard, the entire community risks losing their right to participate in the program for a year and that is enough to keep everyone watching out for the snow leopard. Their claims of protection must verified by the game wardens and governmental agencies who actually have incentives to discover poaching because they are often paid a portion of the confiscation if they can catch a poacher.
Brad told us that next to his organizations’ founders’ zoo in Seattle, Big Cat Rescue is the largest retailer for Snow Leopard Enterprises.
In 2007 we collected fecal samples from our captive snow leopards for the Snow Leopard Trust to use in training dogs to be able to tell one wild snow leopard from another just by sniffing the scat left behind. This will greatly enhance conservation efforts and is a cost effective method as well. The video we produced is being aired on our sites, and also being used as a marketing tool for the new program and the Snow Leopard Trust.
Guyana, South America: In 2005 Big Cat Rescue President, Jamie Veronica, Marc Johnson, of Foster Parrots and paying eco tourism guests returned to Guyana to continue talks with the Amerindian people about the need for a wildlife protection and addressing this issue through the further development of an eco-tourism project. They met with Guyana Member of Parliament Shirley Melville. An Arawak Amerindian and a strong advocate for Amerindian rights, M.P. Shirley Melville had also been highly active in conservation and environmental protection issues. Embracing the project with tremendous enthusiasm, Nappi Village has dedicated 250 square miles of tribal territory asprotected conservation land and was chosen as the site for the first eco-tour lodge complex.
The country of Guyana, famously rich in bio-diversity, is one of the least populated tropical countries in the world with a population of only 850,000 inhabitants. With only three percent of its 80,000 square miles inhabited it is, unfortunately, one of only two countries in South America that still legally exports parrots and other wildlife for the pet trade. In fact, Guyana has been one of the top exporters of wild parrots in the world and remains active in trapping parrots, wild cats, primates, reptiles, sea turtles and various other land and sea animals.
Trapping and exportation of native species has been, for generations, one of Guyana ‘s only means of generating income for the indigenous people. However, closer examination of the trade in wildlife reveals grim realities of the animal export trade; decimation of native wildlife species and habitat is leading to irreversible elimination of the very source of income. The native people, who are essential in the harvesting of these resources, earn an abysmal fraction of the value of the exported animals. In a country where the average annual income is little more than $1,000.00, the income derived through the capture of wildlife and habitat destruction remains attractive.
The native Amerindian tribes of Guyana, now becoming aware of the need to protect their forests and wildlife, are expressing the desire to take control of the ecological destiny of their country rather than bow down to the exploitation of animal trades, miners and loggers currently at liberty to devastate Guyana ‘s natural heritage.
Project Guyana enables us to take the first steps towards protecting and preserving Guyana ‘s native wildlife by offering a more financially attractive and culturally desirable alternative to poaching. Through the development of this viable eco-tourism project entire Amerindian communities can benefit from the income derived from hosting visitors, who are often sympathetic to their needs. Eco-tourism will create sustainable employment opportunities for the indigenous people of Guyana who can bring their acute knowledge of their natural resources and their many skills and crafts to a new and exciting international market. It will not only lend economic strength to participating communities, but will provide a canopy of protection for the native species whose values as wild animals far exceeds the cost of a destructive and self-serving exotic pet trade.
Eco-Tour Attractions: Visitors to Guyana will have a choice of tour itineraries ranging from an ambitious 3 and 4-day Kanuku Mountains hike that will bring them to the realm of the Harpy Eagle, to more leisurely tours that will encompass sightings of Red Bellied, Scarlet, Red and Green, Blue and Yellow Macaws, Giant Anteaters and a wide variety of primates. Horseback and canoe excursions will let tour groups experience the wilds of Guyana at an intimate level. Visitors can also travel to Kaeiteur Falls to witness one of the world’s tallest single-drop waterfalls of 741 feet. Construction on the first of two planned lodge complexes, located in Nappi Village, has been completed by the local tribes with funds from Foster Parrots and Big Cat Rescue.
Successful eco-tours were led from the US to Guyana in 2005, 2006 and 2007. Funds have been earmarked again for this project and BCR President, Jamie Veronica will deliver them when she returns in the winter for the second 2007 tour. On her visits she set camera traps to learn the migratory routes of the native cats and taught the villagers how to change the film and send it to her via an Internet café 7 hours away. Meanwhile native handicrafts are being sold in our gift shop just like we are doing for Africa and the Snow Leopard Trust. Big Cat Rescue will continue to assist Project Guyana by arranging eco tourism adventures where all of the proceeds go to the Amerindians to enable them to protect their native wildlife and their heritage.
Brazil: In November 2005 Big Cat Rescue donated funds to Dr. Jim Sanderson, Ph.D, a world renown field biologist to assist him in his study of the Pampas Cat in Brazil. The funding helped purchase the camera traps, telemetry collars, microchips and other equipment necessary to study the Pampas Cat in the wild, helped pay the local people that will be trained to monitor the equipment, helped in processing of samples and development of film, helped to supplement the diets and medical needs of the Pampas Cats in the program who are producing viable offspring.
The purpose of our involvement is to make people aware of the beautiful Pampas Cat and cause them to care about its survival, to learn about the needs of the Pampas Cat for survival in the wild so that the people of Brazil can incorporate those needs into their reforestation plans, and to ultimately see the Pampas Cat, and all of his wild cat cousins, living “Safe In the Wild.”
Big Cat Rescue Makes National News
Big Cat Rescue has been in the press 379 times, in 18 states including GA, CO, IO, IL, MN, MO, DC, NC, NY, OH, MT, OK, NJ, MA, WA, SC, CA & FL and 25 programs of national or international coverage or in countries other than the U.S.Only the largest national and international stories are listed below:
The following are just the non Florida news stories about Big Cat Rescue.
379 8/20/07 See us on Current TV today! Our Sand Cat Species Spotlight will also be playing on Tuesday 8/21/07 at approximately 8:19A, 12:31P, 9:19P, and 5:32a Eastern Time.
377 7/31/07 Jeff Golimowski, Senior Staff Writer for Washington’s CNS News covered the annual Taking Action for Animals Conference. He quoted Carole Baskin in saying that extremists are making it more difficult for those wanting to help animals to work within the system. “It is a challenge because when you have one bad person, you tend to all get painted with the same brush,” she said. “That’s like saying every Christian is a member of the KKK.” This article ran in several media outlets.
376 7/17/07 Lisa Lerer, reporter for the D.C. paper called The Politico did an article called Lobbyist Feels Good by Doing Good about the pro bono work Paul Miller is doing for Big Cat Rescue on Haley’s Act.
374 7/1/07 Parenting Magazine featured Tampabay Buccaneer Quarterback, Chris Simms’ visit to Big Cat Rescue with the orphans from the Children’s Home on the cover of their magazine and gave us a huge two page spread with photos.
369 6/9/07 Judith Worley of USA Travel Magazine did a wonderful feature on visiting Big Cat Rescue.
368 6/9/07 Carole Baskin was quoted by National Geographic on the plight of leopards in India.
364 6/1/07 Southeastern Group Tour Magazine did a two page article on things to to in the Tampabay area called The Perfect Mix and, of course, Big Cat Rescue was included.
363 5/25/07 Katherine Fletcher, reporter for Capital PARENT Magazine, did two stories about Big Cat Rescue. In one she listed it with San Diego’s Wild Animal Park and Canada’s Montreal Biodome as best places to visit. She went on to differential between zoos and sanctuaries and between real sanctuaries, like Big Cat Rescue that do not breed, sell or exploit animals and pseudo sanctuaries that are merely a cover for back yard menageries and road side zoos.
359 4/14/07 Big Cat Rescue was featured on the Ms. Adventure Show called Communication.
354 3/20/07 ABC news interviewed Scott Lope, Operations Manager for Big Cat Rescue about why so many Florida bobcats are being hit by cars.
353 3/9/07 Stephen Guilfoyle, Editor of the News & Reporter OnlineChester.com reported that opponents of Tiger World watched a presentation that included a video clip from Big Cat Rescue. He went on to say, “The spokesman on the video says some of the things that zoology experts have told The News & Reporter about private ownership groups. Jaunakais originally talked about breeding her cats, but the experts said that is a sure test to determine that a group is not into saving or conserving the species. There are actually too many big cats in private ownership, and there is no need to breed more, the spokesman on the video showed (Brian Czarnik, BOD of Big Cat Rescue). Breeding is a sign that a private owner has other motives than conservation. Others are allowing people to view the animals as well as taking the animals off-site for exhibitions.”
352 3/7/07 Scott Lope was interviewed on the Bill O’Reilly Show on Fox 13 which aired coast to coast on the issue of public feeding of carnivores.
351 2/18/07 Carole Baskin’s letter to the editor about exotic pet incidents was posted in the Baltimore Times-Herald.
350 2/12/07 Austin, TX the PR Web hosted an article by Suzann Kale favoring faux fur fashions and quoted “Nice Girls Fake It” and “Go Cool vs. Cruel this Year” say the Big Cat Rescue people.
345 1/16/07 The San Francisco Chronicle wrote “One proponent of public feeding is Carole Baskin, chief executive officer of Big Cat Rescue, a sanctuary with more than 100 felines in Tampa, Fla. “We do public feedings to show people that the cats they may have seen elsewhere on leashes, doing tricks or posing for photos, become entirely different animals in the presence of food,” Baskin said. “When a person sees a tiger crunch through a cow femur like it was a potato chip, they can visualize what some part of their body would look like in the cat’s mouth.”She is hoping that such visceral displays will end the demand for big cats as props or pets and put breeders out of business.”
344 1/14/07 Carole Baskin was posted in the Indy Star in response to an article about a cougar that escaped from Joe Taft’s Exotic Feline Rescue.
343 1/13/07 In the summer of 2006 Dan Mazur and his team rescued Lincoln Hall 800 ft. from the summit of Mt. Everest! His story and true heroism made world news! Today he came to share his story with a group of about 60 at Big Cat Rescue. Channel 10 interviewed him and Howard Baskin about why he had traveled from CA to FL to share his story with us.
341 12/29/06 Shannon and Chuck Reinighaus, Editors of The Grande Life magazine did almost a full page story on Big Cat Rescue and why there are so many abandoned big cats.
340 12/25/06 Nancy Grace hosted Jack Hanna on CNN and ran a clip of Scott Lope talking about the booming exotic pet trade as he stood in front of Nikita the lioness at Big Cat Rescue. When you read the transcript you can’t help but notice that as long as there were animals in front of the host, Jack Hanna could barely get a word in edgewise about why we need bans on these exotic animals as pets (even though he tried repeatedly) because all the host wanted to talk about was if she could pet and hold the animals. When animals are being presented like pets, people just aren’t hearing the message that they don’t make good pets.
338 12/22/06 Carole Baskin’s letter to the editor about a man parading a tiger around at a fair was published in the Kamloops News and the authorities in British Columbia are seeking penalties against Kim Carlton of Siberian Magic.
337 12/21/06 In the UK, thanks to Daphne Butters, an AdvoCat, Our Cats Magazine has published articles about Big Cat Rescue and has included one in their 2006 Annual book.
336 12/15/06 Big Cat Rescue was featured in the book called Adventure Vacations for Animal Lovers by Stephanie Ocko as a great place to visit.
331 12/4/06 Der Spiegel, the Germany equivalent of our Time Magazine, did a story on the big cat crisis in America that is fostered by our lack of laws and enforcement. Reporter Philip Bethge wrote about the deaths of Haley Hildebrand, Vince Lowe, Joy Holiday and reported on the mauling of Roy Horn and others. His report included the sad truth about what often happens to the cats when they escape, when they are killed for doing what comes naturally and how they end up in road side zoos in the care of people who pride themselves on being big game hunters. He used Gloria Johnson as an example of people who support the white tiger trade so that they can use the animals as props. Most of the cases cited were in Florida where he spoke with FWCC officials, viewed photos of the people who had been killed, and learned that the state has done little to control the problem. An English translation is available HERE
329 11/26/06 Susan Heeger included Big Cat Rescue in her article in O, The Oprah Magazine called “Where the Wild Things Go” as one of five accredited rescue facilities that provide a permanent home to big cats.
321 11/5/06 Anthony Flint, Correspondent for the Boston Globe published today that if you visit Tampa-St.Petersburg you have to see Big Cat Rescue.
320 11/1/06 UK Cat magazine ‘OUR CATS’ started a series of articles written by Daphne Butters, based on her experiences on her annual visits from England to Big Cat Rescue, 2001- 2006. This series will run in the magazine, published every two weeks, for the next 10 issues, ending in spring 2007.
319 10/27/06 Although not mentioned in the reports, Big Cat Rescue assisted ABC News in these undercover investigations: ABC did an undercover investigation that you can watch online. Be sure to watch all of the clips listed there. They start out the same but are very different. What they do share in common is the grim truth that some people are using animals in ways that put the public in deadly contact with dangerous animals.
299 9/17/06 Tim Chitwood at the Ledger-Enquirer.com reported on the Shriners Circus using tigers in GA and linked to Big Cat Rescue to let readers know more about tigers in circus acts. He quoted volunteer Elizabeth Jordan of Big Cat Rescue telling of her observance of abuse and discovered that no back ground checks appear to be performed on the clowns despite the fact that one named Spanky had a long list of child molestation charges.
295 9/1/06 Atlanta Magazine did a piece called Undiscovered Florida by Carolyn Deariso who concluded her article with a half page and photo of Shere Khan at Big Cat Rescue suggesting that everyone visit us.
286 8/8/06 The Denver Post’s Joey Bunch quoted Carole Baskin in reference to the potential closure of Prairie Wind.
285 8/6/06 Carole Baskin was quoted on the Sioux City Journal’s web site on Congress ending a tax scam that unfairly compensated hunters.
274 7/3/06 The CBS sponsored NFL home site ran the same story below giving us national coverage of Chris Simms visit to Big Cat Rescue. Chris has already called to schedule more time here thanks to his good relationship with our Operations Manager Scott Lope and he hopes to bring his friends and family soon.
273 7/2/2006 The Chicago Star did a cover story on Big Cat Rescue with one full page photo of Natasha and Willow the fur farm rescues and a half page photo of Shere Khan and China doll. The story was written by Carole Schrock. The Hillsborough County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau sent a copy to us, thanking us for representing Tampa so well and saying that this sort of coverage was worth more than 18,000 in the advertising world.
264 6/3/06 The Associated Press’ reporter Andrea Fanta interviewed Carole Baskin and Gloria Johnson and did a nice job of illustrating why cuddling big cats and walking them on leashes makes people want to buy them as pets, thus perpetuating the problem that creates so many unwanted and abandoned exotic cats.
260 5/13/06 Shere Khan was featured on the cover of the USBorne Discovery Internet Linked book called Big Cats by Jonathan Sheikh-Miller and Stephanie Turnbull.
bigcatrescue.org: We maintain a web site that is considered THE source on exotic cat information that includes information on all 35 species of wild cats with photos and their sounds. Because we are home to the world’s largest and most diverse collection of exotic cats we provide photos that depict animals most people have never seen. Our photos are often downloaded by other animal related organizations who are doing their part to raise awareness. Our cats’ images have been included in documentaries, books, CD-ROMs, calendars, field guides, eBay guidelines to prevent the illegal fur trade, and even towels. All of this is encouraged to educate the public about the plight these animals face.
Our web site includes information that saves lives. We get calls and e mail from all around the world, at all hours of the night, from people facing a life or death situation with an exotic cat. From newborns to the geriatric, we have documented virtually every life threatening experience a cat can face, and all of the general questions about nutrition, vaccines, cage design, and animal husbandry that we can answer. With a mouse click we can direct the animal’s care giver to the solution they are looking for. Over and over again we are told that by having this information immediately available it has saved animals lives.
The web site uses all of the latest in cutting edge technology and incorporates many interactive games, puzzles and videos about exotic animals and the issues they face in captivity and in the wild.
Some of the pages are presented in Spanish and we devote a lot of our resources to telling the animal’s stories via photos, slideshows and videos that are capable of transcending language barriers. We have converted many of the key pages into audio to assist the blind, the illiterate and the very young.
Big Cat Rescue’s web site includes free teacher’s resources, including age appropriate study guides in reading, writing, math and science at bigcatrescue.org/teachersresource. These include study materials, tests, and activities to make learning fun and memorable.
In 2007 3,236 of our online supporters sent letters to the Chinese government urging them to ban the farming of captive tigers for their fur, bones and organs. They did this through our sub site at www.CatLaws.com This interactive portion of our web site has enjoyed continued growth and influence in legislative matters both in the U.S. and abroad.
Our On-Site Visitors Come From Around the Globe
Our visitors: People come from all around the world, just to see Big Cat Rescue. Below are just a 409 from Jan. 1, 2007 until August 21, 2007:
|States: 34 + FL|
|LAST NAME||FIRST NAME||CITY||STATE/COUNTRY|
|Chan||Albert & Leah||Grand Cayman, Cayman Island||CAYMAN ISLAND|
|Fortin||Claude & Bonnie||Tunder Bay, Ontario||CANADA|
|Houliha||Trisha||Cayman Brac, Cayman Island||CAYMAN ISLAND|
|La Batte||Don & Sue||Thonorn, Ontario||CANADA|
|Moffat||Diane||Perthshire and Kinross||UNITED KINGDOM|
|Stronski||Ron & Linda||Smiths Falls, Ontario||CANADA|
|Appell||Eric & Jelena||Los Angeles||CA|
|Chalas||Jeffrey & Charline||Elk Grove||CA|
|Fernandez||Gic & Kim||Rio Vist||CA|
|Lapides||Larkin and Melvin||Los Altos||CA|
|San Luis Obispo||CA|
|Goldblatt||Pat & Steve||South Windsor||CT|
|Sundberg||Linda & Aaron||burlington||CT|
|Deedy||Linda & Justin||Marietta||GA|
|Pierce||Kathi & Tiffani||McDonough||GA|
|Taylor||Chris & Eugene||Snellville||GA|
|Yockers||Anthony & Paige||Kennesaw||GA|
|Gruening||Fred & Charlotte||Urbandale||IA|
|Halterman||Frank & Esther||Des Moines||IA|
|Callahan||K & J||Lake Bluff||IL|
|Garwood||Barbara & Joseph||Edwardsville||IL|
|Moore||Randall & Janice||Edwardsville||IL|
|Nation||Dolly & Gary||Downers Grove||IL|
|Van Vossa||Jacob||Tinley Park||IL|
|Ladenski||Chris & Janice||La Porte||IN|
|Roussel||Theresa & Janet||Spencerville||IN|
|Stewart||Carolyn & Carrie||Elwood||IN|
|Cates||James & Christina||Derby||KS|
|Pearce||Lew & Vickie||Hutchinson||KS|
|Peterson||Chester & Jeanette||Lindsborg||KS|
|Thetge||Victor & Joy||Harper||KS|
|Trinkle||Dorothy & Don||Preston||KS|
|White||Cindy & Bruce||Wichita||KS|
|Cheslock||Sandra & Gerald||Rockland||MA|
|DeAngelis||Charles & Elizabeth||Westwood||MA|
|O’Toole||Dibbie & Shawn||Charlton||MA|
|O’Toole||Robert & Barbara||Dudley||MA|
|Reynolds||David and Carole||Waltham||MA|
|Zenaro||Stephanie & John||Worchester||MA|
|Hahn||Jonette & George||Annapolis||MD|
|Bardelli||Jeff & Wendy||Dearborn Heights||MI|
|Bruce||Jenny & Cindy||East Pointe||MI|
|Cook||Denise & David||Holt||MI|
|Everets||Dawn and Lonnie||Grand Ledge||MI|
|Lang||Larry & Trina||Ortonville||MI|
|McPhalin||Art & Pat||Dearborn Heights||MI|
|Schwegman||Lorry & John||Troy||MI|
|Welch||Linda||St. Clair Shores||MI|
|Wolfe||Tanya & Eric||Chase||MI|
|Casella||Sam & Monica||Grantham||NH|
|Keiner||Deb & Dana||New Boston||NH|
|Stephenson||William & Shirley||Lyndeborough||NH|
|LeSchander||Lona & Susan||Flemington||NJ|
|O’Neill||Candice & Linda||Atco||NJ|
|Shapley||Ruth Ann||Toms River||NJ|
|Weingart||C & J||Hillsborough||NJ|
|Wright||Mark & Judy||Ocean View||NJ|
|Magness||Garry & Lisa||Las Vegas||NV|
|Auerbach||Amy & Michael||New York||NY|
|Daty||Roberta||Castleton On Hudson||NY|
|Fuller||Dorothy & David||Plattsburgh||NY|
|Gurbacki||Carol & John||Hamburg||NY|
|Lang||Lynn & Anna||Lindenhurst||NY|
|Lieberman||Sarah & Leon||Porter Corners||NY|
|Piotrowski||Carolyn||Port Jefferson Station||NY|
|Seigler||Nanette & William||Rome||NY|
|Vitiello||Linda & Joe||Nanuet||NY|
|Pierce||Lester & Anthony||Waverly||OH|
|Joe & Joyce||Gollipoles||OH|
|Adams||Clyde & Elese||Guymon||OK|
|Story||Lester & Helen||Oklahoma City||OK|
|Tyler||Ted & Jacquelynn||Shawnee||OK|
|Breslin||Anthony & Sean||Philadelphia||PA|
|Capone||Susan & Rocco||Philadelphia||PA|
|Chase||Gareth & Susan||Allentown||PA|
|Cullin||Sandy & Dale||Topton||PA|
|Danner||Gerald & Barbara||Wellsville||PA|
|Hildenbrand||Bob & Ann||Mount Carmel||PA|
|Hoot||Paul and Lois||Selinsgrove||PA|
|Kane||Jean and Dan||Philadelphia||PA|
|Miller||Larry & Nancy||Chambersburg||PA|
|Peters||Rod & Myra||West Decatur||PA|
|Rickard||Martin & Sandy||HONESDALE||PA|
|Warner||Sean & Mary Jo||York||PA|
|Wrye||Tina & Cacie Jo||West Decatur||PA|
|Milton||Bruce & Sharon||Brandt||SD|
|Bubar||Ed & Cindy||Johnson City||TN|
|Durk||Tim & Candace||Washington||UT|
|Hicks||Glen||Salt Lake City||UT|
|Anderson||Gene & Suzan||Roanoke||VA|
|Frame||Rod & Kay||Falls Church||VA|
|Mardula||Susan & Francis||Alexandria||VA|
|Lazar||Deb & Juliana||Putney||VT|
|Moher||Laura & Elaine||Waterbury||VT|
|Schener||Wade devlin & Jarn devlin||Sunderland||VT|
|Rylander||Karen & Mark||Kirkland||WA|
|Sullivan||C & Kimberly||Lake Stevens||WA|
|Zastrow||Adrienne & Louise||Milwaukee||WI|