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ZAA

Newsletter & Journal SUMMER 2009 - VOLUME 3 - ISSUE 2

LEGISLATIVE TASK FORCE UPDATE Legislative and Regulatory Action VOLUNTEER WITH THE SAVANNAH CHEETAH FOUNDATION THE ELUSIVE WHITE ANIMAL Mutations vs. albinos ZAA CONFERENCE INFORMATION


Chairman’s Message Editor’s Notes

Jim Fouts Chairman ZAA

For those of you who may not have heard, let me bring you up to speed on the state of ZAA. Since my last column in the spring issue of the Newsletter, we have continued to make changes to the organization to ensure our survival. First and foremost, we have closed the office in Tampa in order to put less money into administration and more into accomplishing our goals as laid out in our mission statement. Obviously, this means that Heather Dimmer is no longer with ZAA. Heather believed very much in ZAA and put all she had into making the organization a success. Please join me in wishing her well in her next endeavor and thanking for all of her hard work on our behalf. To fill Heather’s shoes, Kristi de Spain has agreed to field calls and answer mail via the same Tampa phone number for the next few months, and she has graciously accepted the position of Membership Chairman. Joe Maynard has agreed to assist with the production of the Newsletter along with the current Editorial Committee, in order to save costs. John Wortman has agreed to handle the mail and aid with finance so we may keep our registered office in Florida. Speaking of finance, ZAA unfortunately has experienced some financial difficulties as a result of several issues over the past year as well as to the overall state of the economy. I am happy to report a number of members have stepped up and have contributed to ensure our survival. We are now back on track and making progress. You see, ZAA is really no different than AAZPA (now AZA) was when they decided to break away from the Parks and Recreation Association back in 1969. They were labeled as we have been, renegades and malcontents, but in fact, we are neither. We have a lot to offer through our wide ranging membership base. We have financial resources, space to contribute for holding large numbers of species and individuals for structured breeding programs, the animals themselves, and in some cases, many more and better genetics than currently in AZA programs. But most of all, we have members with open minds who bring a wide range of ideas to the table to help solve the animal management issues and conservation challenges we face today. In the coming months you will see the development of species management plans for a number of species. To do this we need your participation, ideas, and contributions. I would encourage you to contact your Board Members and/or Conservation Committee Members with your ideas and suggestions, and to join us by contributing financially to ZAA if possible to move our organization to the next level.

At the present we have some vacancies on the board. This issue will be addressed before the annual meeting. It may come as a shock to some of you that not everyone wants to be on the board. It pays nothing, is a thankless job, and can consume up to 30% of a person’s time if done properly. Some of our most capable and gifted people with the proper intelligence and integrity are simply too busy to participate. At the other extreme are trouble-making obstructionists who would love to take this organization to chaos city. It is my understanding that all organizations have this element. However, the bird and animal groups appear to have a larger cargo than the rest. I have sought an answer to this enigma from the most learned amongst us. It is their opinion that these people gravitate toward animals because of their inability to get along with their own species.

Mike Jones Advertising/ Editorial Chairman and Board Member of ZAA

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ZAA Board of Directors Name Jim Fouts Ingrid Schmidt-Buchanan Pat Quinn Joe Maynard Mike Jones Dan Miller Jim Fowler John Wortman Vacant Vacant Vacant

Board Position Chairman Vice-Chair Treasurer Secretary Board Member Board Member Board Member Board Member Board Member Board Member Board Member

Term Expires Annual meeting of 2011 Annual meeting of 2012 Annual meeting of 2009 Annual meeting of 2011 Annual meeting of 2013 Annual meeting of 2013 Annual meeting of 2010 Annual meeting of 2010 Annual meeting of 2012 Annual meeting of 2009 Annual meeting of 2009

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NOTE - New Mailing address: Please note ZAA’s new mailing address effectively immediately!! ZAA P.O. Box 511275 Punta Gorda, FL 33951-1275

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on this planet, we have two very strange and disturbed specimens.

Film Review by Pat Quinn

I saw the film “Earth” this past May; what an anthropomorphic piece of work! The flick could have been an educational tool portraying nature as it truly is. The photography was wonderful, but the weepy dialog lacked any semblance to the natural world and animal behavior. One of the quotes was, “Although the father bear is dead, the spirit of the father bear will live on in the hearts of the children (cubs) forever.” Is this guesswork or an assumption on someone’s part? Terminology like ‘mother bear’ and ‘children’ do not do justice to the polar bear. I always thought male bears were boars; females were sows and young were cubs.

ZAA Merchandise

In a certain clip (after an exhausting chase) the viewers were not allowed to witness the reward of the cheetah having its meal - a gazelle (cheetah Big Mac). The lions in Chobe National Park are known to hunt and take elephants as prey. The camera again panned away as the pride of lions was making the kill (chicken nuggets).

The 10-day trip will include stops to the Ngorongoro Crater, Olduvai Gorge and Serengeti National Park beginning on October 15 and concluding on October 25, 2009.

However, when schools of (children) fish were consumed by large fish, the camera caught the action. You see, (baby) fish are not warm and fuzzy. White sharks were then filmed biting sea lions in stop-frame motion. That is the way nature works. It is interesting to note that our children (cubs) are exposed to trash and violence in much of the media, not to mention e-mails with violent action and porn; bloodletting in the movies; and video games that are gruesome beyond belief. It is interesting to note that visitors in many zoos are not allowed to watch a snake eat a rat, chicken or rabbit; watch cheetah take down live prey or lions being fed a recognizable part of a horse or cow in public displays; go figure! When we watch a hunting program on TV there is a warning to cover your eyes as it could be disturbing to some.

5th Annual ZAA Conference

Please visit the ZAA website for more information on ZAA merchandise for sale. You may also contact the administration office at (813) 449-4356 or info@zaa.org.

Tanzania Safari Adventure Seekers has prepared another African safari adventure for ZAA members to bid on and enjoy. The starting bid including two passengers is $5,000. The amount for each additional passenger starts at $5,500.

Bidding information is posted on the ZAA website at www.zaa.org.

October 14 to 17 mark the dates of the 5th Annual ZAA Conference to be held in Wichita, Kansas, at Tanganyika Wildlife Park. Please be sure to plan accordingly in order to attend the conference. The Conference Committee is hard at work securing speakers, workshops and presentations. If you would like to make a presentation during this event, or if you have suggestions for a speaker, please send an email to: conference@zaa.org.

On the other side of the coin, the Animal Planet channel often sensationalizes the natural world which is just as disturbing, especially to a zoologist like myself. Animals are portrayed as “the most deadly,” “the ugliest,” or “the scariest!” This approach can be just as detrimental to wildlife. What about the real world and how interesting nature really is? Whatever happened to just reporting the scientific facts and educating our children with the correct terminology? What are we afraid of? The Earth we live on and the other animals who share this planet are wonderment in themselves. We do not need to anthropomorphize or sensationalize the action of their life on planet Earth. I firmly believe when human beings try to humanize or sensationalize other animals

Committee Corner Legislative Task Force, by Joe Hune

Legislative and Regulatory Action There is a tremendous amount of legislative action happening across our country that will have an impact on responsible animal ownership. ZAA will try its

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consistent, and inform them of the potential impact the pending policy change will have on your interests. A United States Elected Official often has a ridiculously tight schedule, so do not expect to get your phone call immediately put through to him. Leave your information with the staff and don’t be afraid to ask that staffer how the information will be relayed to their bosses. This will give you an We are asking that you contact us for assistance if laws indication of how well they are representing your interests. are being written in your community that will impact animal ownership. We will do our best to provide you with advice and support with the limited resources that Here is a copy of a sample letter that the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council has written on H.R. 669. we have at our disposal, but it is imperative that you Please fit your letter accordingly to the specific get involved. legislative matters affecting you. So what can you do? best to keep track of legislation, ordinances, and rules as they progress; however, our resources are certainly limited. Our organization does not have the resources or ability to track every piece of legislation or bureaucratic rule across the country. Therefore, it is incumbent upon our membership to get engaged in their particular communities.

Dear Representative,

1) Keep track of rules or legislation going through the process. How can you do this? Your state usually has a website to track legislation and bureaucratic rules for its citizens. Take a look at these sites and get informed. Your local government may not necessarily have a website to track legislation, but a phone call, email, or letter asking your elected official to keep you in the loop if anything arises will often help. Another method is to take a look at what the opposition is pushing, which will usually be harmful to all of us. 2) Contact us! My email address is Joehune@hotmail.com and my cell number is (810) 599-2957. 3) Get involved! It is essential to contact your elected and appointed officials. There is usually an opportunity to voice your concerns about potential laws and make certain to do that. You must pick up a phone, send an email, or write a letter. All of the officials work for you in the end and that is important to remember. Make your voices heard. Elected officials are especially responsive to their voters. One thing to remember when conversing with your policymakers is to remain professional. Form a well written email, letter, or fax and address it to “The Honorable Congressman First and last Name.” Maintaining a level of professionalism is important, because poor behavior will reflect negatively on all of us as animal owners. Concisely address the issue at hand, and refer to the House Resolution Number or label that the proposal is given. Threats only serve to inflame negative opinions of the letter writers. In other words, do not threaten your elected official. When I served in the Michigan Legislature, I would not respond to political threats. So, do not threaten to vote against, or worse yet threaten to give their opponents political support. Remain professional at all times. These issues are emotional, but the best way for you to gain favor is through well thought out arguments and professionalism. Also, do not be afraid to pick up the phone and call your elected officials. This can be very helpful and remember to stay calm,

Please join me in opposing, H.R. 669, the Nonnative Wildlife Invasion Prevention Act. This Bill is being advanced by powerful special interest groups and creates an unworkable process which is designed to fail. The government simply does not have the resources to evaluate the thousands of nonnative species already in this country for years and meet the unrealistic listing criteria and timeframes in the law, and such a process is unnecessary for controlling truly invasive species. There is absolutely no evidence to suggest that banning the import, sale, and trade of the vast majority of these animals will have any positive effect on the economy, environment, or human or animal species’ health. In fact, if passed as drafted, H.R. 669 would destroy many families and businesses. It would have a decidedly negative impact on an already ailing economy by destroying a vital and growing industry at a time when our country is in need of jobs and growth. Pet lovers such as myself support a legislative solution that targets species which may actually be invasive, rather than every species not originally native to the U.S., including thousands of species that have been in this country for decades without adverse impact. This Bill is a disaster to American business owners as well as pet owners who care deeply about their pets and face having to dispose of them because of a flawed law. Please do not pass H.R. 669 without addressing these flaws. Sincerely, Mr. John/Jane Smith 1001 Main St Anytown, ST 12345-0000

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4) Be pro-active! Invite your elected and appointed policymakers to your place and get to know them or even stop in at their office hours. Good relationships are key in the policy making process.

it was really a challenge to discern the different calls of birds we didn’t yet know!

I hate to repeat myself over and over, but we must communicate with our decision-makers. Current status: We are providing a bit of assistance to many of you across the country. We wish that we could afford more to assist in battles in every part of the country, but that’s simply not in the cards. We have been in contact with members in many jurisdictions and would like you to feel free to contact us. Joe Hune ZAA Legislative Task Force Chairman Students walking

Birding in South Africa with Ecotraining (Part II) By Sheri Hanna

Continued from Volume 3, Issue 1 So now, come along on a typical day in the “Birding Boot Camp”…a term we used fondly but not lightly! Starting at 4:30 a.m…yes, that’s 4:30 in the morning, the drums sound and we dress quickly. Though still a bit dark, you can hear the birdsong all around you. We met at the study deck for coffee and rusks to get us going for the morning walk or drive. There were so many birds to see and hear around the camp; we started off at about 5 a.m. There were also several camp visitors to see us on our way. Both the Chacma baboons and Vervet monkeys were common around the camp, sleeping in the Nyala trees at night.

We made our way toward the Lala Palm windmill into an area of bushveld, a combination of woodland and savanna habitat. There was a watering trough nearby that brings in many birds: a great place to stop and observe. Here we saw Jameson’s Fire Finches, Red-Backed Shrikes, Grey-backed Camaropteras, Blue Waxbills, Lemon-breasted Canaries, Cinnamon-breasted buntings, and so many more. Several species of doves were typically about as well, including the Red-eye dove (“I am the red-eye dove”), Cape Turtle-dove and the Emerald-spotted Wood dove. We did see two species of parrots flying overhead, both the Brown-headed and the Grey-headed. As they landed in a far away tree, we learned that the

During the trip, a typical morning was overcast, the temperatures were mild and in the mid 70s. I understood that we were quite fortunate in this respect, as the usual temperatures were in the 90s and above, and when the sky was clear it was very hot! Because of the milder weather, the birds stayed out longer instead of seeking shelter from the heat of the day. It was early summertime while we were there, and prime breeding season. Not far into the walk we came across several birds, including white-browed scrub-robins and Orange Breasted Bush-Shrikes. In addition to sight identification, we were to learn the bird calls and the little tricks given were helpful to remember them. The Orange Breasted Bush-Shrike call sounded like “coffee-tea-or-me.” Should be easy enough, eh? Well…..maybe! As we walked, we were always surrounded by lush birdsong coming from the bushes;

Orange Breasted Bush-Shrike

Brown-headed had high-pitched squeaks, and the Grey-headed squawked. Learning the calls and behaviors were important tools to help identify the birds in the field. We watched as a Broad-billed roller flew overhead, chasing a Harrier hawk. He landed in a

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nearby tree, giving us a good look and a nice photo opportunity. Then, a wonderful sight….a pair of racket-tailed rollers displaying in flight, as if for our benefit! After a few minutes they flew off, and we followed their path for another look. We were excited to spot their nesting site - a real find! We were told that only about 1 percent of birders ever actually get to see them, let alone the mating display. Continuing along, we wanted to cross over to the Yellow Fever Tree forest, a spectacular place for birding and one of the three main places to visit in this area. The instructor spoke about the absolute need for

closely. Here we saw so many different tiny insects and worms, as well as the dung beetles….each one with its own important job. There are actually over 800 species of dung beetles! This was just another good reason not to step in poo. We finally made it to the Yellow Fever Tree forest, and the birdsong was amazing. Looking all around, we spotted Bennett’s, Bearded and Golden-tailed Woodpeckers tapping on trees; a White-backed Vulture overhead with a full crop from the recent breakfast. Perched in a dead tree nearby, two African Green Pigeons kept a close eye on us. Then we heard an unmistakable call and soon saw a Trumpeter hornbill landing in a tree high above. This is one bird I was quite familiar with! At that point, we headed back to camp to take one of the vehicles out on a drive. There were two vehicles used in the camp, allowing us to explore farther than the walks could take us. Along the drive, there were so many different species, including Violet Backed Starling, Helmeted Guinea Fowl, Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill and Green Wood Hoopoes. Stopping along the way allowed us to get out of the vehicle and travel into the bush, in hopes of getting a closer look at some of the more elusive birds.

We were instructed to always be aware of our surroundings; you never know what might be watching Red Crested Korhaan you. There were always animals on the fringes watching us from a safe distance. Impala were safety. Because this is a big game area, whenever we common here as well as Kudu, Nyala, Chacma walked on foot both guides were armed. baboons, and even a few lions. We were fortunate to sit and observe a pair of teenage lions resting in a However, in order to get over to the forest, we had to walk across the Mokwadsi Pan through the tall grasses. clearing, calling softly to others in the distance. The grasses were about five to six feet tall at this time. Driving farther down the road, we came upon a mother lion with her cub. They were confidently resting only And you never want to just walk out into the grass ten feet from the road. Our guide assured us she was without surveying first…you never know what you growling at her rambunctious cub, but we still didn’t will come across…such as the Cape Buffalo! linger too long. Cape buffalo are large animals, weighing 1,500 lbs; they are also unpredictable and extremely dangerous! This herd was heading for water, and we were in their pathway. We hoped they hadn’t noticed us yet, but they had. They had smelled us, though hadn’t yet seen us. We moved into the shadow of a large Nyala tree to stay out of sight, as well as give us protection in case they decided to stampede. We waited quietly for about ten minutes, and then slowly moved on to give them a wider berth, always staying in the shadows. Behind the herd, we made our way through the grass and continued our walk toward the forest. There is always something to learn here, and every step you take is an important one. In addition to safety, we were taught about sensitivity to the environment. Even a pile of dung is an entire eco-system of its own, and our instructor Bruce pointed to one and had us look

We reached a watering hole in the forest, and were thrilled to see Hammerkops mating and nest building. So many other species of birds were around, including Pied Kingfishers, Tropical Boubou, Chinspot Batis

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actually here in Africa! The emotion of this moment is one that will truly stay with me for a lifetime.

Mother lion and cub

(“three-blind-mice”), and….. in the distance, we heard the call of a Purple crested Turaco. For me personally, the Turaco family has been pivotal; the chance to see one in the wild would be a dream come true. As I was so excited at the prospect, the group kindly indulged me. The guides carry MP3 players with bird calls recorded on them, used to call in a specific bird or species. Here is where some birding ethics came into play and are carefully observed; the calls are used sparingly and only in certain instances. The call was played and the Turaco answered….but didn’t come near at first. We walked a bit farther into the forest, and heard the Turaco calling again. They played the call once more….

Too soon it was time to head back to camp for breakfast, with binoculars at the ready and field notebooks in hand to record what we saw on the way back. We felt like birds were literally everywhere. For example, take the Red-crested Korhaan. It was always displaying to the Land Rover, taking flight about 20 feet into the air before throwing its head and feet backwards and falling to just above the ground where it would right itself and land. We saw several species of cuckoo including the rare Thick-billed Cuckoo and the Didericks cuckoo (“De-de-diderick”). We also saw the Levaillant’s cuckoo which has black and white stripes on its throat, making it easy to distinguish from the Jacobin cuckoo. By now we were feeling pretty confident about our new birding talents. This confidence quickly faded when our guide asked us to identify a mostly black bird – a Melanistic Jacobin cuckoo! So many variations, these identification challenges could at times be overwhelming. The sheer variety of birds we saw and heard in just a few short hours was incredible!

It was now 9:30 a.m. and seeing our camp was a welcome sight. We could smell breakfast awaiting us and we were starving! The food is really good here; there is always plenty for everyone. The two women who cook and clean at the camp are actually part of the Makuleke tribe, and the concession this camp is in belongs to the tribe. After being forcibly removed in The Turaco (or Lourie as they are called here) bounced 1969 by the government, the Makuleke people were in the trees overhead for a few minutes, calling for the finally able to successfully reclaim their land in 1998, “other Turaco” in its territory. We got a long look and as part of an ongoing agreement, three before he flew off. It was then that the emotion of the concessionaires have camps situated here, including moment overtook me, and I must admit tears of joy Eco-Training. mixed with sadness rolling down my cheek. Just a few days before leaving on this trip, my very first Turaco Besides the bird identification sessions in the field, had passed away of old age. She was the beginning, there are daily lectures, and a training manual is and guided my path into true aviculture. She had been provided. After the morning walk or drive and wild-caught, so seeing this Turaco in the wild brought breakfast, the daily lecteck, typically when the heat of things full circle, and I knew that this would herald the day would be at its highest. another pivotal time in my life. (Part three will be printed in the Fall edition) Farther along the walk we visited the second of the three main places to visit in this part of Kruger – Crooks Corner. Crook’s Corner is so named because poachers, smugglers and blackbirders (men who smuggled illegal black laborers) took advantage of the spot where the borders of South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique meet.

One Zooman’s Perspective By Eric Mogensen, Virginia Safari Park

ZAA Surplus and Wanted Listings. It is important that we develop avenues…good avenues…for the placement of surplus, as well as have a way to locate needed specimens. ZAA posts an animal exchange online. If this membership benefit is available to you One of the so called “Big Six” in birds is the or your staff, please use it. Update your listings on a Saddle-Billed Stork, and we were fortunate to see a pair in the dry riverbed in Crooks Corner. We took the regular basis. This is a good way for all members to interact. ZAA is a compilation of large and small zoos, opportunity to rest and watch the storks as well as some other inhabitants such as hippos and crocodiles. as well as breeders and a very good, and expanding, It was here that the realization of where I was standing network of affiliated organizations. finally hit, and the incredible thrill of realizing I was ZAA Newsletter & Journal - page 6


The ability to post and receive this membership privilege must not be overlooked. It is a powerful tool in developing good contacts between the members.

won’t matter if they aren’t sure of your ability to properly care for their specimens. Most are held accountable to senior staff or a Board of Directors. If you tell them something, then stand by your word…which is good advice for everybody. If you are a zoo with dual memberships, please start listing a few specimens to break the ice. Get your staff to know members within the ZAA. The exchange of specimens will help insure a strong organization…but it all starts with the listings. Let’s begin!

The Elusive White Animal By Mike Jones

Years ago, when I was an animal supplier with another zoo association, the most important piece of mail I received each and every month was the Animal Exchange. When that monthly periodical was due, I would post myself right by the mailbox until the mail arrived, and did so on a daily basis until it did. And look out when it did arrive! I was not to be disturbed...phone lines had to remain open and clear! I would quickly open the booklet, scanning each page rapidly to see if anything caught my eye, such as a new listing, some new specimens, or new and reduced prices. Once I was done with the quick scan…because you had to be quick with the phone if you saw an exceptional deal…then it was time to relax and enjoy the listings. I would compare notes taken from the previous month’s listings (I never threw one away and still have them going back to the 1980s…and a few from the 1970s), or call the zoo and see about negotiating a better deal since, in many cases, they had the same animals listed for the past few months. It was a great pleasure to get this listing. It also served as a very important link to my business…opening up new avenues of communication. I would call a facility about one specimen and end up talking about three other species and various other topics. Just as it was then, the animal postings through ZAA are a vital link to the organization and in assisting members to communicate with each other. We can offer “sister” facilities many unique specimens and species and may serve as a reservoir for holding surplus specimens from other zoos. The private members need to understand the guidelines that many public zoos use. Don’t call them expecting to purchase primates to bottle-raise or male antelope to hunt; do expect to fill out a lot of paperwork. Be patient; you will be new to many facilities and it takes time to build trust and a working relationship. It will be worth it. For better or worse, the public zoos are usually not motivated by money, so offering top dollar

When a white mutation or an albino appears in a species, it is an occasion. American Indians considered white buffalo to be sacred objects and these animals are still highly revered by them today. A white mutation is not an albino. A mutation is a genetic change of DNA material. An albino results in an absence of hair, skin, and eye color from a glandular malfunction. Because both conditions tend to be rare, prices of animals with either condition are higher.

White mutations are more desirable to me, as I have always felt breeding albinos was encouraging a defect. Regardless of this, I do breed albinos because in macropods, it is the only “game in town”. At present there are albino Bennett’s Wallabies, albino Eastern Grey Kangaroos, and in Australia there are now albino Red Kangaroos. How long can you expect to wait for a white animal when the only white genes in your mob are recessive? The answer is between anytime and almost never. My Bennett’s Wallaby finally produced a white animal in the fifteenth year. The next one came five years later. Now I get them every year.

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People have told me that the white wallaby is calmer and tamer. My observation has been that the albino animal simply does not see as well in day time hours. I only keep two males with my female wallabies. More than two is simply too much attention when the female is in season. Three or more males causes stress. Stress is the main cause of death in macropods. When I ran a normal male and an albino male, only one in five babies were white. (As I mentioned, albinos have a vision handicap in day.) Now that I have two albino males with my mob, most of the babies are white. In a few years I plan to have a normal color mob and a separate white one too. It is my understanding that the very first pair of albino Bennett’s Wallabies were a gift to the Queen of England. All albinos today are supposedly linked to those two animals. cheetahs as well as Pieter & Estelle Kemp. Pieter & Estelle are expert in breeding and hand rearing with Volunteer with the Savannah Cheetah 100% success rate and are incredibly knowledgeable on the cheetah. We were briefed on the background of Foundation the cheetahs raised here as well as some of the duties By Sheri Hanna the volunteers have during their stay. At this point, we It is truly amazing, the opportunities for education and had the most incredible time sitting with the cheetahs, while learning more about their individual traits and experience that are available, and some of them not the work focus within the program. It is one thing to only benefit the individual person applying but can read about a species and what needs to be done for also have a major impact in a conservation program. their future; but when you take the opportunity to experience them in a personal way, there is a much At the 2008 ZAA conference in Omaha, I met the deeper appreciation, understanding and desire to founder of the Savannah Cheetah Foundation, Mr. Bobby Hartslief. He had given a project update to the contribute to their survival. The dedication you find ZAA board on the Reintroduction of Cheetah into the here at SCF is admirable, with their successes and Wild project at SCF. SCF is fully accredited by ZAA, goals even more so. Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) and more; and it now has 501c3 status. After learning of Lynn Hall’s desire to promote wildlife education by sponsoring students, he found that I was heading to South Africa to take a wildlife course myself. He generously extended an invitation to visit SCF and learn more, especially about the educational volunteer opportunities available. That was an invitation I couldn’t pass up! As promised, Bobby met my friend Shelly and me at the Johannesburg airport and drove us to the Savannah. It is a beautiful setting, situated in a 1,000 hectare reserve, based near Parys and bordering the Vaal River. In addition to a well-appointed lodge, there are several custom built tents, allowing a true “Out of Africa” experience. The birdlife we encountered included Crested Barbets and the Hadeda Ibis; there have been over 311 species of birds recorded here. In addition to the birdlife, we saw several Impala and even Rhino. We were introduced to Lizzie Duthie, the volunteer coordinator at the Savannah. Lizzie gave us the tour, starting with an opportunity to meet the ambassador

Lizzie took us down to the volunteer housing, not far from the lodge. There was an old farm house that had been beautifully restored, providing quite comfortable accommodations for the volunteers during their stay. Here we sat at the kitchen table, and Lizzie gave us a more in-depth look at the volunteer program. The assistance of the volunteers has been invaluable to the program, and the education they receive here equally so towards their own future endeavors. The volunteers

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are able to immerse themselves in a real conservation effort, while having an impact that few other programs offer. Along with hands on experience with daily care, maintenance & interaction with the cheetahs, there is also opportunity to work on their reintroduction project. This includes playing a vital role in raising and teaching the cheetahs to prepare to hunt for themselves, helping to realize the ground-breaking goal of seeing free-roaming cheetahs once again. Conservation goals of SCF extend beyond the cheetah project, including eradication of disease in buffalo, effects of pesticides on birdlife and more. Volunteers also get to experience first-hand the African bush, learn about wildlife on the reserve, as well as receive informal lectures on such topics as plant identification, tracking, and astronomy, to name a few.

Quest Recycling Quest is starting a “meat program” with Walmart/Sam’s Club in October. The idea is for Walmart/Sam’s to unload their meat that is beyond the sell-by date without sending it to a renderer.(According to Quest, the USDA expiration date is 2-3 weeks after the sell-by date.) For more info go to the web site below. http://www.questrecycling.com/solutions/doc/feedinga nimals.php

The aim of the volunteer program is to give one a deeper understanding of conservation and its importance in the 21st century, as well as on a daily basis. The training received, combined with incredible experience of interacting with the cheetahs and education from volunteering will undoubtedly be one of the most comprehensive and rewarding experiences of a lifetime; the potential impact in conservation…immeasurable.

Membership Announcements: The ZAA Board of Directors would like to welcome Dr. Cathy Cranmore, Don Osborne and Dr. Thomas Stelnicki as new Professional members.

Accreditation We would like to congratulate Animal Junction, Warminster, PA, on their successful completion of the ZAA Accreditation process as an Educational facility.

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Animal Finder’s Guide www.aniamlfindersguide.com P.O. Box 99 Prairie Creek, IN 7869

(812) 898-2678 animalfinder@thnet.com

American Lory Society www.lorysociety.com

American Federation of Aviculture

Macropod Information Exchange www.macropodinfo.com

www.afabirds.org P.O. Box 409302 Lawrenceville, GA 30049

For more information contact: Margrethe Warden birdbraib@mindspring.com

P.O. Box 91717 Austin, TX 78709-1717 (512)585-9800 afaoffice@earthlink.net

Rare Breeds Journal

Simian Society of America

Www.rarebreedsjournal.com

A humane and educational organization dedicated to the care and welfare of all captive nonhuman primates

For more information contact Valerie Holt (702) 277-3963

Carin Sousa. President 201 Sheline Drive

P.O. Box 66 Crawford, NE 69339 (308) 665-1431 rarebreed@bbc.net

Info@simiansociety.org www.simiansociety.org

ZAA AFFILIATES

Havana, FL 32333 carin6699@aol.com (850)539-5677

Long Island Ocelot Club

New Guinea Singing Dog International Dedicated to the education, preservation,

P.O. Box 511275 Punta Gorda, FL 33951-1275

rescue, documentation, responsible ownership, and search of new bloodlines for the New Guinea singing dog in new Guinea www.freewebs.com/singingdogs

ZAA Summer 2009 Newsletter  

Journal of the Zoological Association of America

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