Frogs – small animals

Frogs are usually small animals that have smooth, moist skin, bulging eyes, and external eardrums behind the eyes; the adults lack a tail. Frogs have long hind legs, and most species can take long leaps. Many species also have webbed feet, making them excellent swimmers. Most frogs, especially males, are quite vocal. As the frog forces air through the voice box, or larynx, the vocal cords vibrate to make calls distinctive of its species.

A much louder sound is produced by the males of species that possess vocal sacs, which swell enormously when the frog calls to attract a mate. The frog’s tongue is attached at the front of the mouth instead of at the rear, and it is covered with a sticky substance, making it an efficient trap. Like most amphibians, most frogs pass through a free-living fishlike larval stage before undergoing true metamorphosis into adult frogs.

Many of these frogs lay their eggs in water, although some lay their eggs on vegetation above the water, in wet places on land, or even on the back of one of the parents. The breeding season varies according to species and geographic region but often coincides with heavy spring or summer rains. Tadpoles have gills and a tail, and most feed on algae and other vegetation, although a few are carnivorous and may even feed on their siblings. As tadpoles mature, the tail is absorbed, lungs develop, the gills disappear, legs appear, and the adult frog form is established.

Some frogs, especially in the tropics, do not go through a larval phase; these frogs lay eggs, usually in damp places out of water, that hatch directly into froglets. Behavior Frogs live in a variety of habitats, but most prefer moist regions. Although they are air breathers, frogs can stay underwater for long periods, and they can breathe through the skin. Tree frogs are adapted for tree living; other frogs are permanently aquatic; still others spend most of their lives in underground burrows, coming up only to feed or breed.

Like all amphibians, a frog’s body temperature depends on its surroundings, and in colder regions frogs burrow in mud to hibernate. Some kinds, such as certain Australian frogs, estivate-that is, lie in a state of torpor during intense heat-after burying themselves in sand and clay. Frogs subsist principally on insects, worms, spiders, and centipedes. Aquatic frogs sometimes eat other frogs, tadpoles, and small fish. Larger frogs eat objects as large as mice or small snakes.

Bottlenose dolphins

Bottlenose dolphins are among the most vocal of the nonhuman animals and exhibit remarkable development of the sound production and auditory mechanisms. This can be seen in audition, which is shown in the animal’s highly refined echolocation ability, and in tightly organized schools in which they live that are made up by sound communication. In testing the communication skills of dolphins, extensive studies have been done on vocal mimicry, in which the animal imitates computer-generated sounds in order to test motor control in terms of cognitive ability.

Language comprehension on the other hand has been tested through labeling of objects, which has proven to be successful regarding the association of sound and object stimulus. The biggest question in dolphin communication, is whether or not the species is capable of intentional communicative acts. Though results from studies have been debatable, the key to understanding the extent to this “language” is to determine whether they have a repertoire of grammatical rules that generate organized sequences.

In determining this, the greatest accomplishment for both the scientist and all of humanity, would be to accomplish interspecies communication, creating a bridge between humans and animals which could open up a new understanding of the unknown world of wildlife. Most importantly, it is necessary to understand the incredible aptitude of dolphin communicative skills, and the impressive intelligence the animal possesses which allows for a great deal of intraspecies and interspecies communication (Schusterman, Thomas, & Wood, 1986).

The acoustical reception and processing abilities of the bottlenosed dolphins have generally been shown to be among the most sophisticated of any animal so far examined (Popper, 1980 as cited by Schusterman et al. 1986). In order to understand the complexity of these highly mechanized acoustic systems, it is necessary to learn the process for which the dolphin hears. In most water-adapted cetaceans, tissue conduction is the primary route of sound conduction to the middle ear. The isolation of the bullae shows an adaptation for tissue conducted sound. The lower jaw contains fat that is closely associated with the impedance of seawater.

The lower jawbone of most odontocetes becomes broadened and quite thin posteriorly, and the fat forms an oval shape that closely corresponds to the area of minimum thickness of the jaw. This fat body leads directly to the bulla, producing a sound path to the ear structures located deep within the head. Paired and single air sacs are scattered throughout the skull, which serve to channel these tissue-conducted sounds (Popov & Supin, 1991). Other than this description, there are still more studies needed to determine the function of the middle ear and the type of bone conduction that occurs within the bulla.

Due to detailed audiograms, dolphins have been shown to have the ability to detect high-frequency sounds. In an experiment by Johnson (1966) as cited in Schusterman et al. (1986), sine-wave sounds ranging in frequency from 75 Hz to 150 Hz were presented to a bottle-nosed dolphin. The animal was trained to swim in a stationary area within a stall and to watch for a light to come on. Following the light presentation a sound was sometimes presented. If the dolphin heard the sound, its task was to leave the area and push a lever.

Sound intensity levels were varied by a staircase method of 1, 2, or 3 dB steps. The resulting audiogram, compared to the human aerial audiogram, showed that at regions of best sensitivity for each, thresholds for human and dolphin are quite similar, but separated by about 50 kHz in frequency, showing that the animal’s inner ear function is very similar to a human. The experiments done on dolphin auditory functions have generally shown a finely adapted sound reception system. This would be expected due to the highly adapted echolocation ability of the bottlenosed dolphin and other cetaceans.

Results of work on absolute thresholds, critical bandwidths, frequency discrimination, and sound localization all indicate that the dolphin auditory system is at least as good or better than the human system. This is in spite of the fact that sound travels five times as fast under water as it does in air (Popov et al. 1991). The bottlenosed dolphin in captivity produces two categories of vocalizations: (a) narrow-band, frequency-varying, continuous tonal sounds referred to as “whistles” and (b) broad-band pulsed sounds expressed as trains of very short duration clicks of varying rates (Evans, 1967, as cited in Schusterman et al. 986).

The pulsed sounds are used for both communication and echolocation, and the whistles are found to be used primarily for communication (Herman & Tavolga, 1980, as cited in Schusterman et al. 1986). Descriptions in literature emphasizing either the whistles or the pulsed sounds have led to contradictory hypotheses concerning the communication system of the dolphin. It has been reported that individually specific whistles often make up over 90% of the whistle repertoire of captive bottlenosed dolphins (Popov et al. 1991).

A number of observations of apparent vocal mimicry have been made, though with no systematic investigation of the degree of vocal flexibility. The observed variability in the whistles, combined with the difficulty of identifying individual vocalizing dolphins in a group, has led to speculation that the whistles might be a complex, shared system, in which specific meanings could be assigned to specific whistles. Consideration of vocal mimicry has been taken to understand its relation to cognitive complexity, and to the potential use of vocal response for communication in an artificial language.

In one study done by McCowan, Hanser, & Doyle, (1999), the dolphin was able to learn to mimic a number of computer-generated model sounds with high fidelity and reliability. The dolphin using its whistle mode of vocalization imitated all of the sounds, and all were distinct from the unreinforced whistles produced prior to training. The large majority of each dolphin’s whistle vocalizations were individually specific acoustic patterns, described as a “signature whistle”; the rest of the whistles were short chirps. The results of the mimicry training have shown that dolphins can mimic tonal sounds with frequencies between 4 and 20 Hz.

Due to this research, scientists can now learn from these mimicry skills how to understand and develop natural communication based on a stronger emphasis on the animal’s cognitive abilities (Brecht, 1993). In object labeling, the dolphins seemed to understand the task of associating model sounds with displayed objects. Progress was most rapid when the model sound was always presented at full intensity, but the probability of its being presented on any given trial was systematically decreased over successive trials.

There wasn’t any confusion of the objects themselves, but only a tendency to drift in the quality of the rendition of the labels. This demonstration of symbolic use of vocalizations could lead to the investigation of the potential of animals to form referential concepts, thus creating a new understanding of dolphin communication and its uses in the wild. The main purpose of study in dolphin language, is the interest in whether the animal’s speech is intentional communication like our own human speech.

The fact that awareness as applied to the phenomena of human communication also implies something we would not attribute to animals-and this is the awareness that communicative acts are behaviors about behaviors (Crook, 1983, as cited in Schusterman et al. 1986). Language, as we know it, could not exist without the capacity for intentional communication, as all linguistic communications are, by definition, intentional. Dolphins have been observed to have some of these intentional communication characteristics, as their behaviors have shown in captivity.

For example, dolphins have been observed to squirt or splash water at strangers who come near their tank. After squirting the water the dolphin will raise itself out of the water to curiously observe what effect their behavior had on the stranger. Although this behavior is not communitive, nonetheless, it seems to suggest that the dolphin is aware of the effect of its behavior on others, showing that it has the cognitive ability for intentional communication (Erickson, 1993).

Communication between humans and dolphins occurs mostly through a gestural language that borrows some words from American Sign Language. The trainers make the gestures with big arm movements, asking the animal to follow commands such as “person left Frisbee fetch,” which means “bring the Frisbee on the left to the person in the pool”. In one study, two bottlenosed dolphins were tested in proficiency in interpreting gestural language signs and compared against humans who viewed the same videos of veridical and degraded gestures.

The dolphins were found to recognize gestures as accurately as fluent humans, and the results suggested that the dolphins had constructed an interconnected network of semantic and gestural representations in their memory (Herman, Morrel-Samuels, & Pack, 1990). Such requests probe the dolphins understanding of word order and test the animal’s grammatical competence. It has also been determined that dolphins can form a generalized concept about an object: they respond correctly to commands involving a hoop, no matter whether the hoop is round, octagonal, or square.

The animals seem to have a conceptual grasp of the words they learn, showing an understanding of the core attributes of human language, those being semantics and syntax (Erickson, 1993). Though this information seems compelling for dolphin language abilities, to determine whether or not they are capable of complex intentional communications, researchers must continue to investigate their receptive capacities, and to attempt to provide them with a communication system that would tap their productive capacities. Is interspecies communication possible?

Could we someday be having philosophical discussions with a bottlenosed dolphin? Though these questions seem ridiculous, there was much debate over these questions when a medical doctor named John Lilly came out with hopeful findings of dolphin intelligence in the 1960s (Shane, 1991). In the first true research of dolphin communication and intelligence, Lilly set out to show that through the correlation of brain size and IQ, the bottlenose dolphin was perhaps smarter than humans and began a growing interest in dolphins and their language through whistles.

Though dolphins are exceedingly intelligent creatures, no real scientific evidence has yet been found to totally support the many conceptions about the animal’s intelligence. Lilly (1966) states, “A dolphin . . . naturally uses other sounds to convey and receive ‘meaning’: creaking for night-time and murky-water finding and recognition, putt-putting and whistles for exchanges with other dolphins, and even air wailing to excite human responses in the way of fish or applause.

If a dolphin is copying our speech, he’ll copy that part of what he hears which in his ‘language’ conveys meanings. Although this excerpt shows an incredible capability for dolphins to produce intelligent communication, it is findings such as these, which lack scientific support and have lost credibility among other dolphin researchers in the past few decades. Though his findings lack support, Lilly was important in bringing forth interest among people and therefore funds towards more scientifically based research and experiments that have helped us learn more about communication skills and intelligence of dolphins (Tyack et al. 1989).

In order to clearly understand if dolphins are creating intentional, intelligent communicative sounds and meanings, it is necessary to break down the vocal signals into repertoires and analyze those individually. The breaking down of dolphin signaling into component units has just now begun and the task will be to discover if, when, and to what extent they structure formalized sequences of signal units. To determine whether they have a repertoire of grammatical rules that generates organized sequences will be difficult, and it will be necessary to obtain extended and continuous recordings.

Patterns must be found and compared to other dolphin recordings in order to obtain the most accurate and universal findings for language among bottlenose dolphins (Herman, Kuczjac II, & Holder, 1993). Through many more years of careful study of these sounds, it is hopeful that our scientists can determine capacities and meanings behind dolphin language. Though interspecies communication seems unlikely at this point in time, through new studies being conducted our conception of dolphins as communicative animals seems more possible.

Intentional communication through gestural understanding is the best finding so far in the study of these intelligent animals, and leads many to believe there is a lot more to dolphin’s communication skills than has yet been uncovered. In tests done in mimicry and labeling of objects, it seems that the capacity the bottlenose dolphin has for learning and understanding is large enough to make taught communication a realistic goal in the future of dolphin training.

The highly specialized auditory and vocal mechanisms of the animal have helped lead the way to a better understanding of cetacean ear anatomy and sound production mechanisms, and these functions can now be seen as complex structures unlike any found above water. Though more research needs to be done before any true conclusions can be made about dolphin language, from what we do know the bottlenose dolphin is among the most vocal of nonhuman animals and exhibits remarkable development of sound production and auditory mechanisms (Schusterman et al. 1986).

Should Animal Organs Be Transported Into Humans

Should humans be able to have a choice if they would like an experimentally procedure? I feel that yes- humans can use animals’ organs transported into them for medical research! We have come along ways on our research of organs transplants between animals; but of course the monkey is similar to humans but it is not exactly like it. I feel its great they are trying it to see if their laboratory tests were really accurate or not.

All the scientists are finally being able to test their results and really think how neat it is to been able to finally found a way to prolong life. The only negative thing is that humans will then start living longer, and we will have to devour a plan so overpopulation does not happen throughout the world. Animal organ transplants into humans is a human medical breakthrough! Who should be eligible to be a medical case study for animal organ transports? I feel that anyone who wants to be a case study individual should be able to do so.

Some of the people that really needed for individual case studies are AIDS victims, diabetic people, and various other illnesses. For example, Jeff Getty, who has AIDS, had to battle to have a chance to try an experiment with baboons bone-marrow transplant for many years. Getty finally had the procedure done in December 1995, after a very long waited time, but no one had a choice to try it yet. Getty is so far has had no complications due to the baboons bone-marrow transplant procedures. Animal organ transplants should be openly available to everyone.

The Blue whale

The Blue whale is the largest creature of the sea, in fact, it is the largest creature known to man. Contrary to what most people think, even though Blue whales live in the sea, they are mammals. They breathe air, have their babies born alive and can live anywhere from 30 to 70 years. The Blue whale is a baleen whale, and instead of having teeth, Blue whales have around 300-400 baleen plates in their mouths. They fall under the category of the rorquals, which are the largest of the baleen family. The scientific name of the Blue whale is, Balsenoptera musculus.

Key Words: Balaenoptera musculus, Suborder Mysticeti, balaenoptera intermedia, balaenoptera brevicauds, baleen whale, rorqual, calf, sulfur bottom, Sibbalds Rorqual, Great Northern Rorqual, gulpers, blowholes, blubber, oil, keratin, krill, copepods, plankton, orcas, endangered Introduction Whales are separated into two groups, the baleen and the toothed whales. The blue whale is the largest baleen whale and the largest animal that ever lived on Earth, including the largest dinosaurs. Baleen are rows of coarse, bristle-like fibers used to strain plankton from the water. Baleen is made of keratin, the same material as our fingernails.

They live in pods, the have two blowholes. The blue whale has a 2-14 inch (5-30cm) thick layer of blubber. Blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus) are baleen whales (Suborder Mysticeti). They are one of 76 species and are marine mammals. Background The Blue whale is called a rorqual, a Norwegian word for furrow referring to the pleated grooves running from its chin to its naval. The pleated throat grooves allow the Blue whales throat to expand during the huge intake of water during filter feeding; they can old 1,000 tons or more of food and water when fully expanded (Small 1971).

Blue whales have 50-70 throat grooves. Blue whales grow up to about 80 feet (25m) long on average, weighing about 120 tons. The females are generally larger than the males, this is the case for all baleen whales. The largest specimen found was a female 94 feet (29m) long weighing more than 174 tons (Satchell 1998). The head of the Blue whale forms up to a quarter of the total body length. Compared with other rorquals, the head is very broad. The blue whale heart is the size of a small car and can pump almost 10 tons of blood throughout he body.

They have a very small, falcate (sickle-shaped) dorsal fin that is located near the fluke, or tail. Blue whales have long, thin flippers 8 feet (2. 4m) long and flukes that are 25feet (7. 6m) wide. The blue whales skin is usually blue-gray with white-gray spots. The underbelly has brown, yellow, or gray specks. During the winter, in cold waters, diatoms stick to the underbelly, giving it a yellow to silver- to sulfur-colored sheen; giving the blue whale its nick-name of sulfur bottoms. Other names include Sibbalds Rorqual and Great Northern Rorqual.

Blue whales (like all baleen whales) are seasonal feeders and carnivores that filter feed tiny crustaceans (krill, copepods, etc), plankton, and small fish from the water. Krill, or shrimp-like euphasiids are no longer than 3 inches. It is amazing that the worlds largest animals feed on the smallest marine life. Blue whales are gulpers, filter feeders that alternatively swim then gulp a mouthful of plankton or fish. An average-sized blue whale will eat 2,000-9,000 pounds (900-4100kg) of plankton each day during the summer feeding season in cold, arctic waters (120 days) (Hasley 1984).

The blue whale has twin blowholes with exceptionally large fleshy splashguards to the front and sides. It has about 320 pairs of black baleen plates with dark gray bristles in the blue whales jaws. These plates can be 35-39 inches (90cm-1m) long, 21 inches (53cm) wide, and weigh 200 pounds (90kg). This is the largest of all the rorquals, but not the largest of all the whales. The tongue weighs 4 tons. Blue whales live individually or in very small pods (groups). They frequently swim in pairs. When the whale comes to the surface of the water, he takes a large breath of air.

Then he dives back into the water, going to a depth of 350 feet (105m). Diving is also the way in which whales catch most of their food. Whales can stay under water for up to two hours without coming to the surface for more air. Blue whales breath air at the surface of the water through 2 blowholes located near the top of the head. They breathe about 1-4 times per minute at rest, and 5-12 times per minute after a deep dive (Hasley 1984). Their blow is a single stream that rises 40-50 feet (12-15m) above the surface of the water.

Blue whales are very fast swimmers; they normally swim -20 mph, but can go up to 24-30mph in bursts when in danger. Feeding speeds are slower, usually about 1-4mph. Blue whales emit very loud, highly structured, repetitive low-frequency sounds that can travel form many miles underwater. They are probably the loudest animals alive, louder than a jet engine. These songs may be used for locating large masses of krill (tiny crustaceans taht they eat) and for communicating with other blue whales. Blue whales typically are found in the open ocean and live at the surface.

They are found in all the oceans of the world. The majority of Blue whales live in the Southern Hemisphere. The subspecies found in the Southern Hemisphere are the balaenoptera musculus. The smaller populations inhabit the North Atlantic and North Pacific. These Northern Hemisphere Blue whales are the balaenoptera brevicauda. They migrate long distances between low latitude winter mating grounds and high latitude summer feeding grounds. They are often seen in parts of California, Gulf of California (Sea of Cortez), Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canada and the northern Indian Ocean.

Blue whale breeding occurs mostly in the winter to early spring while near the surface and in warm waters. The gestation period is about 11-12 months and the calf is born tail first (this is normal for cetaceans) and near the surface in warm, shallow waters (Hasley 1984). The newborn instinctively swims to the surface within 10 seconds for its first breath; it is helped by its mother, using her flippers. Within 30 minutes of its birth the baby whale can swim. The newborn calf is about 25 feet (7. 6m) long and weighs 6-8 tons. Twins are extremely rare (about 1% of births); there is almost always one calf.

The baby is nurtured with its mothers fat-laden milk (it is about 40-50% fat) and is eaned in about 7-8 months. A calf may drink 50 gallons of mothers milk and gain up to 9 pounds an hour or 200 pounds a day. The mother and calf may stay together for a year or longer, when the calf is about 45 feet (13m) long. Blue whales reach maturity at 10-15 years. Blue whales have a life expectancy of 35-40 years. However, there are many factors that limit the life span of the Blue whale. Packs of killer whales (orcas) have been known to attack and kill young blue whales or calves. Man also hunted blue whales until the International

Whaling Commission declared them to be a protected species in 1966 because of a huge decrease in their population. The Blue whale was too swift and powerful for the 19th century whalers to hunt, but with the arrival of harpoon canons, they became a much sought after species for their large amounts of blubber. They were also hunted years ago for their baleen, which was used to make brushes and corsets. But it was their size and high yield of oil that made them the target of choice for modern commercial whalers. Before mans intervention there were 228,000 Blue whales swimming the oceans of the world.

Between 1904 and 1978, whalers scoured the seas for this huge cetacean, most were taken in the Southern Hemisphere, many illegally (Satchell 1998). As the population figure suggests, it was relentlessly slaughtered for every reason imaginable, almost to the point of extinction. Another reason why Blue whales are almost extinct is pollution. Mosst of their illnesses are contracted by pollution. It is estimated that there are about 10,000-14,000 blue whales world-wide. Blue whales are an endangered species. They have been protected worldwide by international law, since 1967.

The blue whale was listed as endangered throughout its range on June 2, 1970 under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Conservation Act of 1969. They are not to be hunted by anyone for any reason at all. Suggestions are that some populations may never recover. Conclusion Although Blue whales are now protected, we still must not hunt or kill them in their delicate balance of life. Some people believe that whales and dolphins are animal of mystery and beauty, and that a dead whale is an omen, good or bad. Most people say that all humans must protect all whales. We need to save these great water giants.

The topic of animal cruelty

The topic of animal cruelty is one of great importance to the wold today. Why we humans have the right reserved to treat animals as lesser individuals is beyond me. Animals are fulfilling their part in the ecosystems and communities of the earth, and to the best extent that they are able. For example, a spider is being the best possible spider that it can be, spinning webs and working diligently at what it knows best, not bothering any creatures of the earth besides the ones which it needs to capture for food.

We, as humans, decided that we are a much advanced life form and can basically treat anything else in this orld in ways which we cannot imagine being treated. As a result the threads holding our earth together tightly in the balance are being slowly unraveled to lead into ultimate self-destruction. In 1988, 16, 989 animals died in laboratories in the United Kingdom. This was due to such tests as acute and chronic toxicity experiments, where the animals are forced to consume substances such as perfume, make-up and other beauty products and are often literally poisoned, their systems literally overloaded by the substance in question.

Another testing method is the Lethal Dose 50 percent est or LD50. In this procedure at least half of the animals must die in order for the government to figure out how much a human can ingest without dying. In one such test some animals were fed 4. lb. of lipstick and one ended up dying of intestinal obstruction. In another, 7 pints of melted eye shadow was fed to rats. In yet another, mice were wrapped in tin foil and grilled in ultraviolet light to test a sun block cream for a total of 96 hours. The results of the test were that the longer the mice stayed in the rays, the more sunburnt they got.

But that is not all. A wax product used in many cosmetics was dosed into animals by a stomach tube. The amount that they used is equivalent to feeding 1 lb of the stuff to humans. The animals involved soon began salivating, bleeding from the nose and mouth, and had extreme diarrhoea. As the test progressed some more, the animals became emaciated and unkempt, had congestion in the lungs and kidneys and solid wax in the stomach. The infamous Draize eye test cannot be forgotten either. Chemicals are instilled into the eyes of rabbits in stocks, often for up to seven days.

And ecause their eyes are physiologically different from ours, they cannot produce enough tears to wash the substance away and it remains there for long periods of time. Unfortunately for them, rabbits are cheap and simple to maintain, and they also have large eyes. In the acute inhalation test the animals are subjected to intense amounts of a certain substance or toxin in a small caged environment for four days to test the effects of chemical inhalants used in aerosol spray cans and other gaseous materials. The animals which actually survive the test are then killed to be xamined. This is also done with tobacco products and alcohol.

Another instance included the removal of infant rhesus monkeys from their mothers at birth and isolated or given cheap substitutes to study the need for a maternal figure early on in life. After 4 months some of the babies were able to integrate back into a normal monkey society, the ones isolated for a year or more had definite social problems. To attempt to find more out about our sexuality we of course turn to cats. After some nerve surgery, the cats involved became disoriented and lost interest n sexual activity. There was also the dastardly one in which some silly scientist removed a cat’s brain to see if it could still walk afterwards.

Vivisection is of course the live dissection of animals for scientific research, and is quite widespread in use today. Most of these are performed without the use of anaesthetics. The ironic thing regarding this entire situation is the fact that animals, for the most part, have a very different body chemistry than us, and, as a whole, are very different than us. So basically none of these tests has any relevancy for us today. As well, there is a widespread range of natural products already available to us which most scientists and doctors refuse to acknowledge because there is more money in animal research.

This is sadistic and wrong. Some governments are pushing for mandatory animal testing on all products, even completely safe products like honey. This is quite unnecessary for the survival of humans. Not to mention the countless numbers of animals which have been injected with infectious diseases so that they can be researched. There have been some breakthroughs in the use of human tissue culture in arious experiments, but of course it is not as good as the real thing. The destruction of so many animals with such harmful products is not exactly healthy for our earth either.

There is really no safe to dispose of a noxious dead body. How unsafe and unreal. As well there are more frightening prospects. All a company has to do to sell a “cruelty- free” product is to not have tested it within the past 5 years. This means that in reality products could be tested now and be on the market in 5 years. How frightening! Once again, this is unusual and unnecessary with all of what the earth has lready provided for us, the healing plants, most of which we are destroying with the clear cut and pollution problems experienced within the past century or so.

What a huge power trip these scientists must be on to have thousands of animals lives hanging in the balance at their command every day. What a complete act of superiority. With so many other options, don’t you think that the situation would lessen or differ somewhat? No, of course not. Humans are always looking for the easy way out of situations, and if that means torturing innocent and helpless animals, then so be it. I am personally against this mode of action.

Endangered Species

Endangered species are living things whose population is so reduced that they are threatened with extinction. Thousands of species are included in this category. The International Union for the Conservation of nature and Natural Resources publishes a list of threatened mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and (many people dont consider them) plants. Millions of years before humans, extinction of living things was linked to geological and climate, the effects of which were translated into major alternation of the environment.

Environmental change is still the primary cause of the extinction of animals, but now the changes are greatly accelerated by humans activity. Clearing land for farms and towns, lumbering, mining, building dams, and draining wetlands all alter the environments so extensively that ecosystems may be completely destroyed. With a burgeoning human population requiring food, shelter, and clothing and constantly demanding more energy-using devices, the temperation to exploit land for human use without regard for consequences is great.

Frequently, several forms of environmental change are responsible for the disappearance of species. For example, as tropical forests are cut down, primates have progressively smaller feeding and living spaces. They also become more accessible to hunters, who kill monkeys for food and trap many primates for sale as pets, research animals, and zoo specimens. Some animal species may move into human communities when their own are destroyed.

Extermination of marauding monkeys, roaming tigers, or foraging deer is easy to justify by people whose livelihood is threatened. Pollution is another form of environments change. Forty species of birds in the United States, including peregrine hawk, bald eagle, pelicans, and roseate terns, lay thin-shelled as a result of ingesting degradation products of and some other chlorination hydrocarbon insecticides that make their way into the food chain.

Species of salamanders in New England are dying out because the ponds in which they breed and the moist soil in which they must live are watered by acid rain (water that combines with pollutants in the air to form acid, sulfuric acid, and other corrosive compounds. Industrial waste dumped in the Mediterranean have so depleted the oxygen supply that some species of bacteria that decompose sewage have been wiped out and the nutrient cycles disturbed. Even the ocean environment has been altered by dumping.

Many species have been exterminated or endangered as a result of humans killing the individuals for food. The Hawaiian state bird, the none (a type of goose), is almost as easy to catch a the legendary do do and nearly met the same fate. The 22 finds of clams and 30 kinds of fish imperiled in the United States are probably all endangered by varying combinations of naturally changing environments, pollution, and over-harvesting. Whale species are on the endangered list.

Whaling is often justified as supplying a source of protein for protein-poor populations. Actually, whales supply only 1% of the protein needs of any countries, such as Japan, that is actively engaged in whaling. In the soviet Union, whaling meat is used to feed animals that are raised for their pelts, such as sable and mink. Thus, the wearer of a ranch-raised Russian sable coat may have indirectly contributed to the ultimate disappearance of the great whales.

Many species have been hunted to the point of extinction for their fur, hides or feathers. These include the big cats, alligators, kimonos, quetzel birds, eastern gray kangaroos, egrets, and bids of paradise. Many people and groups have taken measure to stop the killing of endangered species. Whether the species were killed deliberately, or if by accident (in a oil pill) these groups are trying to stop the killing. In conclusion I just want every one to know that endagered species can be as big as a blue whale or as small as a tiny little ant.

The History Of Dog

The dog has been around for many years they are careing loving animals but they also have a darkside. Dogs have been considered mans best friend for many many years; but do they really fit in the category as mans friend. DOgs have been known to turn on there owners and cause chaos throughout homes even neighborhoods. should they really be let in our homes and if so haow close can we really get to the vicious creatures? Domestic Dog, mammal generally considered to be the first domesticated animal.

This trusted work partner and beloved pet learned to live with humans more than 14,000 years ago. A direct descendant of the wolves that once roamed Europe, Asia, and North America, the domestic dog belongs to the dog family, which includes wolves, coyotes, foxes, and jackals. Dog ancestry has been traced to small, civet-like mammals, called miacis, which had short legs and a long body and lived approximately 40 million years ago. The evolving relationship between the domestic dog and humans has been documented in fossil evidence, artifacts, and records left by earlier civilizations.

Prehistoric dog skeletal remains, excavated from sites in Denmark, England, Germany, Japan, and China, indicate the early coexistence of dogs with people. An ancient Persian cemetery, dating to the 5th century BC, contained thousands of dog skeletons. Their formal burial and the positioning of the dog remains reveal the esteem in which the ancient Persians held their dogs. The relationship shared by dogs and humans also is evident in cave drawings, early pottery, and Asian ivory carvings that depict dogs.

A statue of Anubis, the half dog, half jackal Egyptian god, was discovered inside King Tutankhamen’s tomb, constructed in about 1400 BC. Literary references to the dog include those found in the Bible and in the Greek classic the Odyssey by Homer. In 1576 an English physician and dog fancier, John Caius, wrote a detailed text on dog breeds, Of English Dogges. Dogs are featured in tapestries that were created in the Middle Ages (5th century to 15th century), and in the work of many artists, including 17th- and 18th-century European painters Peter Paul Rubens and Thomas Gainsborough.

Although it is not known how humans and dogs first learned to coexist, people soon discovered the many ways dogs could enrich their lives. Dogs have been used to hunt for food, herd animals, guard livestock and property, destroy rats and other vermin, pull carts and sleds, perform rescues, and apprehend lawbreakers. They have been used during wartime as sentinels and message carriers. Today trained dogs are used to alert deaf people to common household sounds, such as the ringing telephone or doorbell; guide the blind; or retrieve objects for quadriplegics.

Perhaps the most common of the many roles served by the domestic dog, however, is that of companion. As animals with strong social tendencies, dogs typically crave close contact with their owners. And people tend to form loving bonds with dogs. This companionship often helps to ease the pain and isolation of the elderly or people whose physical or mental health requires long-term convalescence or institutionalization.

Killer Whales Essay

Order & Genus. The scientific order of all types of whales is Cetacea. This large order is broken down into three further groups as well: the toothed whales or Odontoceti, which includes killer whales, dolphins, porpoises, beluga whales, and sperm whales, the baleen whales or Mysticeti, which include blue whales, humpback whales, gray whales, and right whales, and the Archaeoceti order, which are all now extinct. The genus of these species is Orcinus orca. Family. The killer whale is the largest in its family of delphinid.

Bottlenose dolphins, common dolphins, and Pacific white-sided dolphins are included in this group as well. The scientific name for this family is Delphinidae. Fossil Record. Modern forms of both odontocetes and mysticetes can be seen in the fossil record of five to seven million years ago. Scientists believe that early whales arose about fifty-five to sixty-five million years ago from, now extinct, ancient land mammals that happened to venture back into the sea. Habitat And Distribution: Distribution. Killer whales can be found in all oceans of the world.

They are the most numerous in the Arctic Ocean and the Antarctic. However, their distribution is limited by seasonal pack ice. Habitat. The main living environment for killer whales is open oceans but they can also be found in coastal waters as well. Migration. Killer whales are very important in the oceans because they cause much of the migration of many fish and other prey. The movements of the killer whale to and from certain areas cause the other prey to move as well. Population. The worldwide population of killer whales is unknown, however they are not endangered whatsoever.

Specific populations in a few areas have been estimated in recent years and some areas of the Antarctic alone have about 180,000 killer whales. The population can be distinguished because killer whales travel in pods, or groups. The resident pods can vary from as few as five to as many as fifty whales. The transient pod size varies from one and seven individuals. Physical Characteristics: Size. Male killer whales average about twenty-two to twenty-seven feet and usually weigh between 8,000 and 12,000 pounds. The largest male ever recorded was thirty-two feet and weighed about 21,000 pounds.

As a male approaches adulthood, it acquires the typical male characteristics: it gains weight, and its pectoral flippers, dorsal fin, and flukes grow larger than those of females. Female killer whales average about seventeen to twenty-four feet and usually weigh between 3,000 and 8,000 pounds. The largest female recorded was twenty-eight feet and weight about 15,000 pounds. Body Shape. The killer whale has a sleek, streamlined body. Its physical characteristics are adapted for life in an aquatic environment. Coloration. Killer whales are easily recognized by their distinct coloration.

The dorsal surface and pectoral flippers are black, except for the area below and behind the dorsal fin. The ventral surface, lower jaw, and undersides of the tail flukes are mostly white and the undersides of the tail fluke are lined with black. A white eyespot is located just above and slightly behind each eye and a gray saddle is located behind the dorsal fin. The distinctive coloration of killer whales is a type of disruptive coloration, a camouflage in which the color pattern of an animal contradicts the animal’s body shape.

By the flickering, filtered sunlight of the sea, other animals may not recognize a killer whale as a potential predator. Thus, making it easy for the killer whale to get to its prey. Body Parts. A killer whale has distinct pectoral flippers, or forelimbs. They have the major skeletal elements of the forelimb’s of land mammals, but they are foreshortened and modified. They are rounded and paddle-like and are used mainly to steer and, with the help of the flukes, to stop. The flukes are the lobe of the tail on a killer whale. They are flattened pads of tough, dense, fibrous connective tissue, completely without bone.

A large male killer whale may have tail flukes measuring up to nine feet from tip to tip. All traces of hind limbs have disappeared except for two reduced, rod- shaped pelvic bones, which are buried deep in the body muscle. These reduced hind limbs are not connected to the vertebral column however. The dorsal fin, like the flukes, is made of dense, fibrous connective tissue with no bones. It acts as a keel, stabilizing a killer whale as it swims. The arteries in this fin help to maintain body temperature. In males, the dorsal fin is tall and triangular and in females it may by slightly curved back.

It both males and females, the dorsal fin may lean to the right or left, being classified as irregularly shaped. A killer whale has a distinct snout-like projection. The teeth are conical and interlocking and are designed for grasping and tearing, rather than chewing. An individual may have between ten and fourteen teeth on each side of the jaw. (About 40 to 58 teeth total. ) They are about three inches long and one inch in diameter. The eyes of a killer whale are similar to the eyes of a cow: big, on each side of the head, and just behind and above the mouth.

The ears are located just behind the eyes and are small with inconspicious openings, with no external ear flaps. A single blowhole is located on the dorsal surface of the head and is covered by a muscular flap. This flap provides a water-tight seal. This is the only way a killer whale can breath, through the blowhole. It is usually in a closed, relax position and can be opened when the killer whale contracts the muscular flap. Senses: Hearing. Killer whales have developed acute senses of hearing over the years. They have responded to tones within the frequency range of about 0. 5 to 100 kHz. (The average range for humans is about 0. to 17 kHz. )

Most sound reception, or hearing, probably takes places through the lower jaw. A killer whale may also receive sound through soft tissue and bone surrounding the ear. Eyesight. Killer whales also have acute eyesight both in and out of the water. Glands at the inner corners of the eye sockets secrete and oily, jellylike mucus that lubricates the eyes, washes away foreign particles, and helps streamline the eyes as the whale swims. This tearlike film also protects the eyes from infective organisms. Touch. Features of the brain indicate that a killer whales sense of touch is well-developed.

Their skin is also sensitive to the touch as scientists have discovered. Taste. There is very little information about the sense of taste in a killer whale. It has been found that they do have taste buds, but they haven’t been well studied. Smell. Olfactory lobes of the brain and olfactory nerves are absent in all toothed whales which indicates that they have no sense of smell at all. They rely fully on hearing and their eyesight to seek prey. Adaptations For The Environment: Swimming. Swimming speed and duration are closely tied: high-speed swimming may last only seconds while low-speed swimming may last indefinitely.

Killer whales are among the fastest swimming marine mammals and can swim speeds of up to 30 mph, but they usually cruise at much slower speeds, between two and six mph. Diving. Killer whales generally dive to depths of about 100 to 200 feet. The deepest dive under experimental conditions is to about 900 feet. When diving, killer whales usually surface about every four to five minutes. At the surface they take two to five breaths at five to ten second intervals before another dive. Respiration. A killer whale breaths through a single blowhole on the dorsal surface of its head.

The whale holds its breath while below water and at the surface contracts its blowhole to breath. Behavior: Social Structure. Killer whales live in groups called pods. They are long-term social units that usually consists of males, females, and calves of varying ages. Several smaller pods may join occasionally to form larger groups of 50 or more individuals called hers or aggregations. There is only an occasional exchange of members between pods, especially during breeding season. Social Behavior. Living in a pod creates a strong social bond between the individuals.

Behavioral studies show that certain animals like associating with one another than they do with others. Individual Behavior. Killer whale behavior includes spyhopping, hanging vertically in the water with its head partially above water, breaching, jumping clear of the water and landing on the back or side, lobtailing, slapping the tail flukes on the surface of the water, and pec-slapping, slapping a pectoral flipper on the surface of the water. Diet And Eating Habits: Food Preferences And Resources. Killer whales are the top predators in the ocean and are the most active predators as well.

In all regions, their diet differs but in the Antarctic, killer whales eat about 67% fishes, 27% marine mammals, and 6% squids. And in the Bering Sea, near Alaska, they eat about 65% fishes, 20% squids, and 15% marine mammals. They also eat other marine mammals and seabirds. Killer whales prey on both mysticete and Odontocete whales, seals, sea lions, walruses, and occasionally sea otters and penguins. Food intake. Adult killer whales eat approximately 3% to 4% of their body weight in food per day and fully weaned calves can eat up to 10% of their body weight per day. Methods Of Collecting Food.

Killer whales often hunt in pods for their food. They work together to encircle and herd prey into small areas before attacking. They may slide out onto sand bars or ice floes to pursue their prey, as well. They surface under ice floes to know prey into the water, too. Reproduction: Sexual Maturity. Studies of killer whales in marine zoological parks suggest that females become sexually mature when they reach about fifteen to sixteen feet, at about six to ten years. Males become sexually mature when they reach about eighteen to twenty feet, at about ten to thirteen years.

Mating Activity. Females become estrus several times during the year. Breeding may occur in any season, but is most common in the summertime. In the North Atlantic, mating seems to peak in October and November, but in the western North Pacific, mating seems to peak between May and July. Communication: Why Is It Important? Killer whales probably rely on sound production and reception to navigate, communicate, and hunt in dark or murky waters. Under these conditions, sight is of little use and communication becomes much more important. Sound Production.

Killer whales produce clicks and sounds that resemble moans, trills, grunts, squeak, and creaking doors. They also produce whistles. They make these sounds at any time and at all depths. The sounds vary in volume, wavelength, frequency, and pattern. Each individual sound that a killer whale makes is termed a call. Calls that sound the same way time after time are stereotyped calls. All the stereotyped calls in a killer whale’s repertoire make up a vocalization system called a dialect. Pods that associate with one another share certain calls.

Wonderful Lives Of Dolphins

Dolphins are one of the most beautiful animals in the word. Dolphins are mammals and are part of the Delphinidae family. This family contains various highly intelligent aquatic mammals. The name dolphin refers to the species that a have a beak like snout and a slender streamline body which helps them to swim at high speeds. Some species can swim up to speeds of 35 mph. Dolphins have a rubbery feeling skin that is hairless; this helps them swim through the water with little resistance. Their skin is very sensitive and has no protection from bumps or bruises. This is because the outer layer is made up entirely live cells.

Since the outer layer is made up out of live cells it is shed every two hours to keep the cells fresh. Dolphins use their flukes to swim through the water by beating the flukes up and down. Men have studied dolphins flukes on a dolphin to improve the effectiveness of submarine and boat propellers. The feeding habits of a dolphin vary; it depends on what is available at the time. A simple meal contains of small fish or squid. Many have to go where the food is and look to find their food. Dolphins use their teeth to catch the food, yet they do not use their teeth to eat the food because they swallow it hole.

Dolphins do not have the best eyesight. They rely on echolocation to help them get where they are going. Echolocation is the use of using sounds to see what is going on up ahead. They make a clicking noise, which is used to find if objects are up ahead. This is because if the noise bounce back they know that there is an object up ahead. They also use this for communicating with other dolphins. Dolphins are found in many different parts of the world in various oceans and even in some freshwater rivers in Asia, Africa, and South America.

The river dolphins are in danger of extinction because of pollution and dams. The main place to see dolphins is in the warm waters of the pacific area. The main dolphins seen are the White-bellied dolphins and the Bottle-nosed dolphins. The most common dolphin can be found in all temperatures and tropical sees. This dolphin is dark above, white below, and has bands of gray white and yellow on the sides. Dolphins sleep in a semi-alert. This is because they have to protect themselves for the dangers of people and other animals they do this by resting one side of their brain at a time.

Dolphins usually stay in-groups of twenty when they are in the coastal areas. When they are out in the sea they are usually in bigger groups. This is because dolphins help each other. They communicate with one another and when one dolphin is sick or injured they help out that dolphin as much as they can. They also work as teams if danger is near by. Dolphins are very intelligent and can be taught to do many different tricks. Maybe one of the most dangers a dolphin has is a human. This is because of the ways of tuna fishing. Fishermen were aware of the fact that schools of dolphins and tuna move together.

Tuna seem to follow dolphins very closely. Fisherman used to put down nets to catch the tuna, but they would also catch the dolphins. They would bring up the tuna and the dolphins in the nets. They then would separate the tuna from the dolphins and through back the dolphins no matter if they were injured or dead. This was not very good for the dolphins so the government has now stepped in and the dolphins are now safe. Dolphins may be neat to look at when you are out in the water and they are swimming freely but they shouldnt be bothered.

These dolphins should be left alone; many people are feeding the dolphins junk food and swimming with them, which puts the dolphins in danger. The dolphins are eating food that they are not used to and when they have their babies the babies are dying. Many studies have proven that they are dying because of malnutrition the food that they are getting is not healthy for them to grow. Dolphins are loved all over the world. Hopefully they will be here for along time. People should stop hurting dolphins and let them do what they want freely.

Hawaiian Goose Essay

The Branta sandvicensis, or Hawaiian goose looks similar to the Canada Goose except only the face, cap, and hindneck are black; and Nene have buff- colored cheeks. The males and female have the same plumage. The feet of this goose are not completely webbed like the other geese. Lots of calls have been described but the most common call is very similar to that of the Canada Goose, a resonate “honk. ” The goose has very strong toes; long legs, decreased webbing. They are good swimmers but are not found much near water.

The birds nest on the ground and the young can fly at 1012 weeks. The adult Goose cannot fly while in molt for 46 weeks. Wild Nene populations can be seen in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Mauna Loa, and Pu’u Wa’awa’a on the island of Hawaii; in Haleakala National Park on Maui; and at the Kilauea National Wildlife Refuge, along the Na Pali coast and outside Lihue on Kauai. Captive Nene can be seen at he Honolulu Zoo. Designated Hawaii’s State Bird on May 7, 1957, the Nene has endured a long struggle against extinction.

During the 1940s this species was almost wiped out by laws which allowed the birds to be hunted during their winter breeding seasons when the birds were most vulnerable. By 1957, when the Nene was named the State Bird, rescue efforts were underway. Conservationists began breeding the birds in captivity in hopes of preserving a remnant of the declining population and, someday, successfully re-establishing them in their native habitat. Other programs for returning captive birds to the wild life was difficult, but more efforts have been successful.

Some other efforts used to help this bird have been to get donations for the bird and have schools help out by donating money to organizations. There are now small populations of Nene on the islands of Hawaii, Maui, and Kauai. There are about 1000 Nene outside of Hawaii’s zoos, and private collections. The Nene is currently on the Federal List of Endangered Species, threatened by mongooses and dogs and cats which prey on the Nene’s eggs and young. They are also endangered by human intrusion of the environment.

Animal Rights is Not Good

Frank Balun, a then 69-year-old retired clothing designer from Hillside, New Jersey had a hobby. His hobby was keeping a vegetable garden. Frank was faced with a small problem. Some squirmy little critter was having a feast off of his tomato plants. Frank smelled a rat. He set a live-trap and on July 27th 1998, the rat was caught. The rat tried to squirm out of the trap; Frank panicked and killed the rodent with a broom handle. Executive Director of the Humane Society, Lee Bernstein had a surprise for Frank, they issued him with a summons. Frank was facing 6 months in jail.

I will now play a little tape that shows the outcome of Frank the Rat Killer’s legal problems Luckily, Frank got off, but things like this happen all too often. The reason is because of tough laws pushed by animal rights organizations like People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and the Humane Society of the United States. The reason for these animal rights groups fervor in backing legislation that is so radical is based on their conception that animals should have rights the same as people do. This can be summed up from Michael W. Fox, the Vice President of the Humane Society of the United States book The Inhumane Society.

In it, he said “The life of an ant and that of my child should be granted equal consideration. ” Can you imagine someone saying that their child and an ant are of equal value? That is what animal rights ideology stands for. What about when Ingrid Newkirk, the President of PETA told the Washington Post in it’s November 13, 1983 edition that “Six million Jews died in Concentration Camps, but six billion broiler chickens will die this year in slaughter houses. ” ? How can someone compare the barbecuing of a chicken to the genocide of six million people? It’s beyond me.

What greater threat to human rights could there be than people that put using animals for culinary purposes on the same field as murder? I believe that these people are a threat. If animals and people are no different, and they advocate euthanasia, or the killing of unwanted animals, what’s to keep society from killing unwanted people, for instance the elderly, if society takes a step in their direction. Alex Pacheco, Director of PETA told the New York Times in the January 14, 1989 edition that “We feel that animals have the same rights as retarded children.

This statement points back to the father of animal rights Peter Singer, a man that does advocates the killing of unwanted elderly people and also thinks the mother and father of a baby should be able to decide whether the baby gets to live after the child is born. Singer wrote in his book, Animal Liberation that “Surely there will be some nonhuman animals whose lives, by any standards, are more valuable than the lives of some humans. ” Not only are they against eating meat, milk, eggs, and honey as well as wearing silk, wool or leather they are also against you and I owning a pet, dog or cat is enslavement.

Ingrid Newkirk the President of PETA told Animal magazine’s May/June 1993 issue that “people don’t have the right to breed dogs and catsif they want companionship they should seek it with their own kind. ” I got some junk mail from PETA recently requesting my financial donation. I wrote on paper that I was already a member of People Eating Tender Animals and used the postage paid envelope to get it back to them. I suggest you all do the same, save your money. You can help animals by being a responsible pet owner, don’t give your money to the same people that would put Frank Balun in jail.

Animals In Psychological Research

An increasing number of researchers, scientists and practitioners are questioning the use of animals in research on ethical, moral, socio-political and scientific grounds. Use of animal research data to affect change in their patients is rarely used by clinical psychologists. This is certainly a public interest issue as it involves an enormous amount of brutality. Animal research is a very lucrative business, since billions of tax dollars are invested in it annually. An enormous amount of this money going towards researchers salaries, overhead costs, animal husbandry expansion and building maintenance.

These billions of dollars can be redirected to prevention, public health programs, treatment and clinical research. There are too many missed opportunities for advancement in psychology due to money spent on theoretical, repetitive and exploitative animal research. In our society we have come to see that animal research is an easy way to stay alive in the publish or perish world of academia. Nearly anything can be proven using animals as test subjects which is evident in the way that the tobacco industry still claims that their research proves that cigarettes do not cause cancer.

In spite of the fact that animal experimentation can be traced back as far as Galen (ca. 100 AD), its significance in consumer safety and medical research and is a relatively recent phenomenon. In 1865, Claude Bernard published his introduction to the study of experimental medicine, which marked the beginning of animal experimentation as a scientific method of research. (Menache, 1998). The industry has always been quick to exploit the less than conclusive results of animal tests, especially in fields such as onconlogy.

Consequently, the drug saccharin remains on sale to the public because it appears to cause bladder cancer only in male rats. The ingestible contraceptive drug Depo-Provera was banned in the United States over twenty years ago on the basis that is caused cancer in baboons and dogs. However, The Food and Drug Administration and The American Health Regulatory Authority recently reinstated the drug because twenty years of human experience in those countries, which did not prohibit its use, had convinced the Food and Drug Administration that Depo-Provera did not cause cancer in humans.

Another example that is even more bizarre is the drug Tamoxifin, which is used to treat human breast cancer. Even though Tamoxifin reduces the incidence of mammary cancer in rodents, it actually increases the presence of liver cancer in rodents, and appears to be also toxic to the kidney (Menache, 1998). Due to the unavoidable biological differences between human beings and animals, the results of animal tests cant be applied to human beings with any degree of confidence. At the 1989 scientific workshop held at the Ciba Foundation past scientific director of Huntington Research Center (U. K. tated that the best guess for the correlation of extreme reactions in man and animal toxicity data is somewhere between 5% and 25%.

The information translates into unacceptable risk levels for the general consumer public. To illustrate this point, the General Accounting office in the United Stated reported that between the years 1976-1985, out of two hundred medications introduced over that period of time, 51% were either withdrawn from the market completely or else re-labeled, because of severe side effects not previously noticed. The Food and Drug Administration has been faulted on animal drug data.

In a report to Congress in 1992, the General Accounting Office found that the Food and Drug Administration in many instances did not carry out inspections to verify the accuracy of data given by private laboratories. Due to FDAs incompetent management the agency was unable to fulfill its task to protect the safety and health of animals and people (Menache, 1998). Professional groups of medical doctors, like the Medical Research Modernization Committee, are now at the cutting edge on the scientific movement advocating that animal tests be replaced with the new methodologies.

In addition to the priceless contributions to medical science of clinical observation, epidemiology, autopsy studies, non-invasive scanning, we are now entering a new world of technologies involving tissue and organ cultures. Furthermore, what is more important is the increasing availability of tissues of human origin, which will reduce the margin of error even further, while compared with extrapolating results from animal tests to humans (Menache, 1998). Ever since the Gulf War, an estimated twenty thousand returning U. S. soldiers have been experiencing a series of mysterious illnesses.

Symptoms included chronic fatigue, joint pain, rashes, hair loss, memory loss, lack of bowel control and even brain damage. Disturbing repots of miscarriages, stillbirths, birth defects and death among the babies conceived by the returning soldiers have also emerged. There is mounting evidence that the Desert Storm Syndrome may be contagious. It has been learned that the American soldiers were exposed to experimental vaccines, drugs and pesticides. On a daily basis the soldiers were required to take an experimental, anti-nerve drug called Pyridostigmine Bromine.

The drug was supposed to be a precautionary measure that would protect the soldiers in case Saddam Hussein engaged in biological, chemical warfare. Additionally, the soldiers were given a powerful insect repellent called DEET and the uniforms were also treated with another pesticide called Permethrin (Supress, 1998). It is obvious that the soldiers were exposed to countless chemicals such as nerve drugs, pesticides, depleted uranium and possible other chemicals that we are not aware of. In addition they were also exposed to experimental vaccines, drugs and pesticides.

We already know why these problems have occurred, and that these chemicals are responsible for these extremely serious health problems. All of the chemicals mentioned above had been tested on different animals prior to their use on the soldiers. Nevertheless, the animal tests were evidently not able to prevent the Gulf War veterans and their children from becoming the real guinea pigs. It is a known fact that the military uses unknown numbers of animals to test all kinds of weapons, including atomic bombs and its chemical and biological weapon arsenal.

But it would be a terrible mistake to assume that the military used only animals, and not humans, as guinea pigs. Over the last decades it has been repeatedly revealed that our military has been caught red-handed conducting experiments not only on thousands of unsuspected and no consenting United Stated soldiers but also on American civilians. During the NBC program Now, entomologist James Moss, PH. D formerly with the United States department of agriculture stated that he wanted to conduct a serious of experiments on rats for the Department of Defense.

The intend and purpose of this experiment was to expose the rats to the drugs, chemicals and pesticides that the American soldiers were exposed to in order to see if the rats live or die. Why bother with animal experiments when we already know what happened to human beings? The fact remains that, even if we didnt know what happens to humans, animal experiments will never be able to tell us anything about human conditions. Each species of animal is a different biochemical entity and the results of such studies and experiments cant be extrapolated from one species to another.

Supress, 1998). Stroke is a dominant cause of sickness and death. However as Dr. Robert Sharpe reports, its human studies that hold the key to success, not animal studies. Human epidemiological studies have the power to save millions of lives, showing that major advances can be achieved without animal experiments. Moreover, animal tests have a dubious record in predicting useful drugs to combat the effects of a stroke. Animal researchers indicate that barbiturates could protect against the effects on the stroke, experiments on dogs, rabbits, and monkeys.

In human stroke victims, however, barbiturates had little or no protective effect. By comparison, the drug nimodipine can help people with a specific form of a stroke such as sub-arachnoids hemorrhage, but the animal data is conflicting and inconsistent. In application with cats and baboons, for instance, nimodipine produced no overall beneficial effect. Furthermore, as Dr. Sharpe states: the leading cause of deaths in patients suffering form sub arachnoid hemorrhage is cerebral vasospasm, a condition in which the blood vessels in the brain constrict.

Human cerebra blood vessels, obtained within twenty-hours of death, have been used to study the problem since little is known about the underlying processes. (Supress, 1998, p. 3). Researchers at the University of Gottingen stress the importance of human tissue since there are considerable advantage is the possible use of pathologically damaged vessels, for example, from atherosceletoric lesions, which are more difficult to obtain from animals. The researchers conclude that much needed improvements in treatment can be expected from human tissue studies. (Supress, 1998 p. 3).

The Medical Research Modernization Committee (MRMC) has reviewed scores of so-called animals models of human diseases and found that they have little or no relevance to human health. Dr. Kaufman explains further that what they found with the study of non-human diseases in non-human animals that it is a fundamentally unsound methodology. (Kaufman, 1998). Despite animal researchers routinely take credit for virtually every medical advance; a growing number of medical historians are revealing that medical progress has rested on human clinical investigation, not animal research.

The most valuable medical research tools are clinical tools, such as autopsies, thorough observation of patients conditions, tissue biopsies and epidemiology. (Kaufman, 1998) The use of animals for research and testing is only one of many investigative techniques available. Dr. Barnard believes that although animal experiments are sometimes intellectually attractive, they are poorly suited to addressing the urgent health problems of our era, such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, birth defects and AIDS. In addition, animal experiments can mislead researchers or contribute to illness or deaths by failing to predict the toxic effects of drugs.

The U. S. General Accounting Office reviewed 198 of the 209 new drugs marketed between years of 1976 and 1985 and found that 52% had serious postapproval risks not predicted by animal tests or limited human trials. These risks were defined as adverse side effects that could lead to disability, hospitalization or death. Consequently, these drugs had to be relabeled with new warnings or withdrawn from the market. (Barnard, 1998). Human population studies of HIV infection elucidated how the virus was transmitted and helped guide intervention programs.

Using human cells and serum in vitro studies allowed researchers to identify the AIDS virus and establish how it causes disease. Many animals have been used in AIDS research, but without much in the way of concrete results. For example, the extensively reported monkey studies using the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIIV) under unnatural conditions suggested that oral sex presented a transmission risk. However, this study did not help extrapolate whether oral sex transmitted HIV in humans or not. (Barnard, 1998). Experimenters have been infecting chimps with the HIV virus since 1984.

In spite of being infected with several different strains of the virus, none have become clinically ill. Experimenters designed treatments to specifically destroy the cells, which are thought to be most active in protecting the body from HIV infections. In addition to being co infected with other viruses, which were presumed to help HIV gain a foothold. There are many physiologic and anatomic differences between humans and chimpanzees. These differences make them a poor model for humans. The differences in the chimpanzee and the human immune system are dramatic and emphasize the impracticality of using these animals as a model for human AIDS.

To predict human causes for birth defects has relied heavily on animal experiment. Although, these have typically proved to be embarrassingly poor predictors of what can happen to humans. In nearly all-animal birth defects test, scientists are left scratching their heads as to whether humans are more similar the animals that develop birth defects or like those who do not. The rates for most birth defects are needed to trace possible genetic and environmental factors associated with birth defects, just as population studies linked heart disease to cholesterol and lung cancer to smoking.

The issue of what role, if any, animal experimentation played in past discoveries in not relevant to what is necessary now for research and safety testing. Prior to scientist developed the cell and tissue cultured common today, animals were routinely used to harbor infectious organisms. But there are few diseased for which this is the case-modern method for vaccine productions are safer and more efficient. Animal toxicity tests to determine the potency of drugs such as digitalis and insulin have largely been replaced with sophisticated laboratory tests that do not involve animals.

The results of animal tests cant be applied to human beings due to biological, physiological and anatomical differences. In my opinion, we cant rely on misleading and faulty information obtained from animal experiments. Animal experiments put human health in risk and danger. Animal experiments showed to be useless in the past, so why should we exploit the animals? Why should we make them suffer and cause unnecessary pain? Good science and scientist is an alternative to animal research.

Animals And Their Rights

When it comes to animals and their rights, there is a definite line between our needs and our taking advantage of those species that we consider inferior. As long as man has existed he has been carnivorous, and the same holds true for many other species of animals. Animals are a necessity to humans for survival, whether it be for food, clothing, etc. However, the unnecessary torture of animals through testing is not a necessity for human survival. When it comes to the needless torture of animals that we claim to benefit, the animals lives need to be taken into consideration.

S. F. Sapontzis gives his theory as to why animals should not be used in testing. To start with, animals are not capable of giving their consent to be used as subjects in an experiment. Secondly, “experiments can only be performed on an individual who is willing, morally speaking. Therefore it is immoral to use animals in experiments” (Sapontzis 209). It would be great if this world where our lives were actually governed by morals. The sad truth is that we do not. Until we do, someone is going to have to stand up for the silent majority that is incapable of voicing its opinion.

When there is torture and unjust treatment towards humans, people then realize that it is wrong. These people realize that it’s wrong when it comes to animals as well. Henry Spira said of the animals used in experiments: “the victims are unable to organize in defense of their own interests” (Spira 194). When it comes to needlessly conducting experiments on animals, no one ever says anything. Humans need to stop thinking about themselves as a superior species to other animals. They have to start thinking about how we can stop the cruelty that they inflict upon animals day after day in experiment after experiment.

Tom Regan, a well-known animal rights activist, wrote, “the fundamental wrong is the system that allows us to view animals as our resources, here for us- to be eaten, or surgically manipulated, or exploited for sport or money” (Regan 14). Nothing could be more true than this fact; man considers itself such a superior species that all others were put on earth for his convenience. It is this type of thinking that has gotten humans to the place where we are today. What humanity needs to do is get off its high-horse and realize that they are not the king of the jungle and we really are no better than any other animal that roams the earth.

It has been suggested that we are a higher form of life than animals. Following this line of thought, according to Sapontzis, experiments should be performed on animals in order to preserve the life of man. Therefore “experiments should be performed on animals in order to protect our species and enhance our lives” (Sapontzis 209). If this is true, then humans should have the right to do whatever it takes to better our situation, including taking advantage of other life forms that we consider lower than themselves.

In Animal Revolution, Richard Ryder writes, “Scientist frequently justify experiments upon non-humans in terms of the benefit they may bring to others” (Ryder 241). This line of thinking illustrates the idea that the sacrificing of one living thing is made in the name of science if it leads to saving of other living things. The problem with this is that animals- such as rats, mice, rabbits, even dogs- are being used to find ways to save the lives of humans. Once again, humans are placed above all other animals when it comes to superiority in life.

Ryder also writes, “Experimenting on humans might well produce far more valid results than do tests on rats” (Ryder 241). If this is true, the fact that humans continue to do research on rodents is absurd. Researchers claim that tests on such animals are needed in order to protect humans in some cases, yet this makes no sense if the data has gotten from these experiments has no relevancy to humans at all. What this amounts to is the unnecessary use and torture of innocent animals that brings about no real contribution to the scientific world or mankind either.

While laboratory rats and mice do greatly differ from humans in genetic make-up, primates do not. It has been found that there are many similarities between chimps and mankind. This is why researchers consider them to make such ideal test subjects. Many primates have been used in experiments that have had overwhelming outcomes where the testing could actually be considered beneficial because of its effect on the human race. This brings us back to the theory that it is morally just if one suffers for the benefit of many. No researcher alive would ever consider using a human test subject to perform such tests that are used on the primates.

This of course is because humans consider themselves superior to all others, but also because of the pain factor. No scientists or researcher would be able to stand using a six-month-old baby or a four-year-old child to test such things as deadly viruses due to the fact that the test would suffer. Primates, on the hand, most researchers feel comfortable using because “they do not feel pain. ” Certainly this is not true, for it has been found by scientists that primates are closely related in genetic in genetic make-up to humans and can therefore experience the same levels of pain as we do.

In her essay entitled The Monkey Wars, Deborah Blum describes the horrible living conditions and tremendous suffering of one group of primates used in an experiment to test the rehabilitation of limbs when surgically crippled: No one bothered to bandage the monkeys injuries properly (on the few occasions when bandages where used at all), and antibiotics were administered only once; no lacerations or self-amputation injuries were ever cleaned. Whenever a bandage was applied, it was never changed, no matter how filthy or soiled it became. They were left on until they deteriorated to the point where they fell off the injured limb.

Old, rotted fragments of bandage were stuck to the cage floors where they collected urine and feces. The monkeys also suffered from a variety of wounds that were self-inflicted or inflicted by monkeys grabbing at them from adjoining cages. I saw discolored, exposed muscle tissue on their arms. Two monkeys had bones protruding through their flesh. Several had bitten off their own fingers and had festered stubs, which they extended towards me as I discreetly took fruit from my pockets. With these pitiful limbs they searched through the foul mess of their waste pans for something to eat (Blum 137).

Deborah Blum also makes reference to the Silver Spring Monkeys when she describes the condition of one primate after he was rescued from the facility in 1981: Paul was a crab-eating macaque with a dragging left arm. The nerves from the spinal cord to the arm- the relay system from the brain- had been severed in an experiment, a study of the bodys response to major nerve loss. Paul has been a chunky monkey once, weighing almost 20 pounds. But when he died, in 1989, he was down to a little over 7 pounds. This is how he died: First, he began to chew apart his nerve- dead arm. Isolated macaques do mutilate themselves and Paul lived alone.

He was too crippled, too defenseless, to be housed with another animal. The chewing could go on and on. On February 16, 1989 he attacked the arm as if it was a snake, suddenly coming to coil around him. His teeth cracked the bones in his hand. “His arm looked like it had been though a meat-grinder,” says Marion Ratterree, a veterinarian at the Tulane Regional Primate Research Center, where Paul was housed. The vets decided to amputate at mid-arm, severing near the elbow. They were reluctant to take off the whole arm, which required breaking apart the shoulder socket. After surgery, Paul went back to his cage.

He refused to eat. His caretakers tried to comfort his, scratching his back. They tried to tempt him with peanut butter, rice cakes, sliced banana. He just turned away. He developed a wasting, draining diarrhea that responded to no drugs. Gangrene appeared in spreading black streaks. On July 4, Ratterree took off the rest of the arm, cracking apart the rest of the shoulder anyway. Paul kept losing weight. They tried force-feeding him with tubes into the stomach, but he continued to wither. He lost the strength to stand. He died, down on the floor of his cage, head tucked against the remaining arm, on August 26 (Blum 105- 106).

There is no reason for treating a primate like Paul in those kinds of conditions. Of course, not all primates in captivity that are used in experimentation are forced to live in such deplorable conditions, but that does not mean that they do not suffer. Regardless of how they are treated, all animals used in experiments suffer to some degree, including not only primates, but rats, mice, rabbits, cats, and dogs as well. Though it would not appear that the animals used in the Draize Test suffer the same amount or to the same degree, they suffer greatly none-the-less.

In his essay “Fighting to Win,” Henry Spira describes this test: “You start with six albino rabbits. You take each animal and check that the eyes are in good condition. Then, holding the animal firmly, you pull the lower lid away from one eyeball so that it forms a small cup. Into this cup you drop 100 milligrams of whatever it is you want to test. You hold the rabbits eye closed for one second and then let it go. A day later you come back and see if the lids are swollen, the iris inflamed, the cornea ulcerated, the rabbit blinded in that eye. That is the Draize Test, named after John H.

Draize, a former official of the Food and Drug Administration of the United States. It is the standard test applied to every substance, from cosmetics for the suffering and death of hundreds of thousands of rabbits each year” (Spira 194). Researchers continue to claim that their experiments are benefiting humanity, but the sad truth is that most experiments really have no significant impact on the scientific world or human life other than that they interest the scientists. Other experiments that are conducted on animals that are destroyed afterwards could easily be conducted on human volunteers.

It has been estimated that between 100 million and 200 million animals die in laboratories around the world each year” (Ryder 77-78). Although it has been proven that a lot of good has come out of animal research and animal testing, this does not make up for all the pain and suffering that these animals go though without being able to consent. The truth still remains that, despite the benefits (when there are benefits), perhaps we need to contemplate the effects that our actions are having on these animals.

Pets For Pleasure And Companionship

Many people today have pets for pleasure and companionship. Nearly any animal can be a pet, such as hamsters, rabbits, birds, fish, frogs, horses, and even cats and dogs. Besides being a loving companion, pets serve many other purposes as in protecting homes, destroying vermin, and providing a means of transportation. The elderly and the childless couples can rely on a pet as an emotional outlet. In addition, pets can be kept for their beauty, rarity, or for the beautiful sounds that birds can make. Today pets are usually purchased from breeders, pet shops, or animal shelters rather then individually captured and tamed.

All pets were made domestic, including cats. Cats are the second most popular pets in the world at this time. Of the two most popular pets, cats are the easiest to maintain and do not need to be taken out for exercise. Being small means cats are not big eaters and only have to eat one or two times a day. Cats can play with string, balls, and anything that may fascinate them. On the other hand, cats can be your companion while you sleep, read a book, or watch television. The life of a cat can be very interesting if you are willing to spend time with them and learn their personality. Every cat has its own personality.

Cats can live to be 15 years old, and in that time a cat owner can find that a cat is a man’s best friend. The origins of a cat can be very interesting, considering that the cat first began its life with the early Egyptians and other cultures. The domestic cat, the most popular cat of the cat family, is a very laid back cat, sleeping most of the day. Other types of cats like the tiger, lion, and the cheetah are some of the fiercest animals in the wild. Looking back in history, and comparing the earlier cats to modern day cats, we discover that today’s cats do not eat to live, but live to eat.

Where did cats come from? Cats were not around when dinosaurs existed, after they disappeared, hoofed animals evolved and led to saber-toothed cats (Rutherford 8). There are many additional subdivisions of cats in the world today. Pseudaulurus, the first true catlike animal, lived about 20 million years ago and roamed the forests of Europe and North America hunting for small mammals and birds (Brown 1147). Eventually, more cats began revealing themselves to the world and began living a dominant life. Two animals become similar when they are exposed to the same food sources and environment conditions (Rutherford 10).

Many cats have approximately the same traits as each other, but the cheetah and the saber-tooths are completely opposite. The cheetah is the cat furthest from the saber-tooth’s in having small canines to allow for the larger nasal opening that enables it to increase its air intake during a high speed chase (Tabor 10). There is not much evidence that shows how far cats date back that we know about. The earliest known remains of a leopard were found in Siwalik Mountains of India and date from about 1. 5 million years ago (Brown 1148). Saber-toothed cats were one of the longest existing cats on earth.

Some saber-toothed cats were still around only 13,000 years ago, so they survived as a subfamily for nearly 34 million years (Tabor 10). Panthers, Lynxes, leopards and other wild cats existed over 10,000 year ago (Rutherford 11). The transition of cats took place over a period of 50 million years; longer than any human has been around. Cats are truly one of the oldest animals still on this earth. The Egyptians were the first to realize the importance of cats. Cats began teaming with people about 2,000 BC in Egypt (Cats 1). There is evidence that points to small wild feline species having been tamed up to 8,000 years ago.

Egyptian Pharaohs were the first to tame cheetahs, and from 1500 BC onwards, cheetahs and dogs were their hunting animals (Rutherford 15). Early Egyptian art verifies that cats were honored as female deity (Cats 1). Much of the Egyptian art appears to us as paintings on the inside of tombs, or wooden carvings of figures of cats. Eventually the Egyptians began linking animals with human traits (Rutherford 27). A lion-headed woman, Bastet or Bast, was one such icon. At Beni Hasan, an Egyptian archeological site, more than 300,000 mummified Bast cats were unearthed (Luke 20).

There was no loss more painful then the death of a cat. At a cat’s death, every member of the family shaved off their eyebrows in mourning (Rutherford 30). The booming of each and every great culture from the pharaohs to the British Empire is the claim of cats (Dempsey 1). A cat was one of the most respected animals in the Egyptian culture. Other cultures’ opinions on cats varied from rodent vacuums to the rain makers. In China cats were believed to have the power to drive away all evil spirits and were kept in houses for that purpose (Henderson 67).

Many superstitions still exist regarding cats. Black cats seem to cause bad luck, while white cats give off good luck (Levin 1). Despite those civilizations, cats never again arise as far as the Egyptian right of individuality (Steve 1). People still believe that cats can heal a person’s soul. Japanese sailors sailed with tortoiseshell cats to protect them from ghosts and to give them warning of storms (Henderson 68). Christians despised the cat for depicting the image of Satan, such as a witch’s black cat.

Cats and Christianity came to Europe at the same time, from just about the same part of the world (Hofmann 13). All cats faced persecution from the early Church for their paganistic connection to cults (Luke 20). The Egyptians were not the only culture to reflect the cat in their art. Ancient Greek, Roman, and Indian art also depicted cats on vases, marble relics, coins, and sculptures (Cats 1). All cultures have different beliefs about cats, but many cultures apply the cat to everyday living. Domestic cats can be found in almost every home of a cat owner.

Most cats are domestic unless bred otherwise. The domesticated cat appeared first in the Middle East more then 3500 years ago, though there is some evidence of a jawbone discovered on Cyprus in 1983 – that such cats existed in 6000 BC (Rutherford 11). On ships, cats were the mice catchers and other rodent eliminators. Cats even traveled to North America with the Pilgrims on the Mayflower (Coll 2). During the 1700’s, explorers, colonists, and traders from Europe brought the domestic cat to the Americas (Cat 219). The transformation from wild to domestic came over a long period of time.

Despite domestic living, our pet cats have retained many features of their wild ancestry (Tabor 8). Although cats have angelic faces, it was one of the last animals to be domesticated. After domesticating horses for transportation, cattle and swine for food, and dogs and leopards for hunting, man began a cautious relationship with the equally cautious domestic cat (Rutherford 11). From that time on cats began their growth in homes. As man thrived, so did the domestic cat, as a result of the massive increase in food supply for both house and feral animals (Tabor 9).

Domestic cats are more popular in the home than any other specially bred cats, considering that creating special breeds did not catch hold until the mid-nineteenth century (Taylor 9). Domesticated cats have an astonishing popularity compared to any other cat in the wild or bred for cat shows. All types of cats come from the same, basic evolution. Cats are meat-eating, or carnivores, and great hunters; they have sharp, pointed teeth called canines and claws that can be retracted into their paws (Brown 1147). Cats have very keen senses, which allow them to stalk their prey.

All cats have well-developed sight and very sharp hearing, which allows them to make successful hunting forays at dawn and dusk (Rutherford 14). Cats must be able to merge in with their environment, to flee the pursuer and pursue their target (Rutherford 18). Some characteristics of the cat outweigh others without competition. Cats have a strong sense of smell, which is used more for detecting and communicating with other animals than for hunting (Rutherford 14). All cats are linked to one another through their traits and characteristics, but no cat can beat the cheetah.

The cheetah is the undisputed champion of sprinters in the animal kingdom; no other creature can surpass it for it’s bursts of speed (Brown 341). Cats occupy all continental landmasses apart from Antarctica and Australia (Cats 1). Due to the cold in Antarctica no animal that is warm-blooded can survive on its own. Cats are found in more places over the world than any other animal. Most cats today live better lives then some American people. Today, the cat maintains its position as a respected, but rarely feared, member of the animal community (Currah 17). Other cultures respect and treat the cat with utmost dignity.

In India today, the Hindu religion urges followers to provide food and shelter for at least one cat (Coll 1). Egyptians still pay their dues to the cat in Egypt. Almost everyone in Egypt owns a cat. Those who don’t, still participate in the culture by leaving out table scraps for the roaming felines that happen to pass by (Reilly 43). Some Americans treat their cats as family members. Most cats are fed twice a day, and have dry food and water out the rest of the day to snack on. A stimulating video game can help entertain your indoor cat, giving their instincts a jump-start (Vanderheidn 18).

The simplest things in everyday life can amaze a cat. By playing, the cat learns to put its abilities to full use, improve its intellect, and burns up excess energy (Mondadori 205). Breeding an animal was a way of getting the animal to its fullest ethnic group. Keeping and breeding pedigree cats has long since ceased to be the privilege of the wealthy (Verhoef 43). Most pet cats today do not die a natural death; their lives are ended by veterinarians who will put an end to a painful illness or a very old cat with many problems, and their owners are with them up to the end (Moyes 1,2).

Superstition says that cats have nine lives because of all the mischief they can get into and how close they come to their demise. Cats are the easiest animals to live with, they are not messy eaters, keep themselves clean, and are easy to clean up after. Cats comfort you when you’re down, and can amuse you with their many talents, like playing with a ball of string. Cats are truly mans best friend. Cats are not the latest trend, but have been around for millions of years. Egyptians worshiped them as goddesses. Many other cultures had luck and fortune superstitions regarding cats.

World cultures took cats on boats or would have them in their homes just because of a superstition. The domestic cat is well known for its preciousness, and angelic faces. The domestic cat is the only cat that people consider having in and around their homes. Considering the size of wild cats’, people would not want them as a pet or a security blanket. The modern day domesticated cat is one of the smallest cats, but can run and climb much faster and higher then we can. The modern day cat is used mostly for the purpose of a companion.

Without a companion we humans have no one to tell our deepest desires, and most profound secrets, and cats can surely keep a secret. We have learned that the evolution of a cat did not just begin yesterday, but has been around for over millions of years. Cats did not just show up on someone’s doorstep; we humans have developed a well-tuned, meat-eating beast. As a cat owner, I have been educated by this project as far back as 35 million years ago. Since cats are tied into the dinosaur era, not only did I learn about cats, but about dinosaurs too. As for the future, cats will still maintain the title as the second most popular pet.

Possibly one day the cat will surpass the dog and become known as man’s best friend. I believe that as cats gain popularity in today’s society, they will eventually need to be walked on leashes; therefore, eliminating their freedom to roam outdoors. The possibility may come for cats to be licensed in the same way that dogs are. If you are planing on getting a cat, I suggest that you get it from the A. S. P. C. A. or from a nearby shelter. Many unwanted cats go to shelters and see their doom in eight days; that’s unless someone comes by and adopts one.

It would be a good idea to get your cat spayed or neutered, so that the pet population would be better controlled. This was an interesting project that not only took a tremendous amount of time and research, but also gave me a better understanding of the cat world. I enjoyed doing the research, typing, and a whole lot of brainstorming. It has definitely taught me organizational skills and file making. This project has given me a jump-start for college and will make researching a paper a little less of a challenge. I look forward to doing more research papers in college with the knowledge I have gained through this experience.

Honeybees As A Resource

Honeybees are very useful to humans. As their name suggests, they make the sweet, delicious treat known as honey that we enjoy. They also make beeswax from which we make many useful items. But the most important thing bees do for us is to pollinate the plants. The honeybee visits flowers which secrete a sweet liquid called nectar. This water-like nectar is sipped from the blossoms by the bee and carried to the beehive. The raw nectar goes into the cells in almost the same condition as it was when the bee sipped it from the flowers.

It is inside the hive that house bees evaporate the nectar down to the thick consistency which is what we know as commercial honey. We usually think of the main use of honey as a spread on bread, pancakes or biscuits. However, honey has a large use in cooking; such as pastries, canned foods, milk drinks, desserts, frostings, syrups, and salad dressings. Honey contains simple sugars and does not require digestion like regular sugar, so it is useful for quick energy pick up and even for diabetic people.

Most honey is sold as extracted honey but it is also sold on the honeycomb which is the wax chambers the bees make in the hive in which to store the honey. The wax comes from a worker bee’s belly when she is fourteen to twenty-one days old. The wax chambers are just big enough for a bee to crawl inside. Sometimes people like to eat honeycomb. It can be eaten on toast or as is; then the wax becomes like a chewing gum, but like chewing gum it should not be swallowed. In recent years a new process called the Dyce process has made it possible to make a very nice granulated honey called creamed honey which is gaining in popularity.

However, granulated honey is not used much commercially because it is still an almost unknown honey product. Beeswax is the second most important product produced by the honeybees. Beeswax, the earliest of waxes, has been used in the form of candles for lighting. This is today the second largest use of beeswax. The Roman Catholic Church used to require that pure beeswax candles be used in church but as the numbers of churches grew there wasn’t enough beeswax available so that now the Catholic Church requires that candles are at least 51 percent beeswax.

The reason the church requires beeswax candles is because the candles do not smoke. Probably the largest user of beeswax today is the cosmetic industry. Beeswax is used as the emulsifying agent in face creams, lipsticks, lotions and rouges. It is also used in shoe polish, sporting goods and military hardware. The beekeeper himself is the third largest user of beeswax which he gives to the bees as the base of their new comb. There are 70 or more commercial uses of beeswax today.

Each year in the United States some 200 million pounds of honey and four to six million pounds of beeswax are produced. Honeybees are not the only insect that pollinates plants, but they are the best. A lot of our food, such as corn, tomatoes, peas, squash, strawberries, apples, pears, and watermelon would not continue without this pollination. During the last three weeks of a worker bee’s life, they fly out of the hives as a forager. The bees take pollen and nectar to the hive and deposit it into cells. During a foraging trip each individual bee will collect pollen from just one kind of plant.

By doing this, each bee helps pollinate the blossoms. When the bee crawls around on the blossom, the pollen (containing male plant reproductive cells) clings to fine hairs located on the bee’s legs. The pollen is carried from one blossom to another blossom of the same kind of plant, where it sticks to the female part of the flower. Without pollination plants would not produce fruit or seeds. Without seeds now new plants could grow. Pollen is carried in small pollen baskets on the outer sides of the bees legs.

In order to fill the baskets with pollen, the bee uses her mouth parts and scrapes the pollen from the blossoms and hairs on her leg to secure it in the basket. The pollen is also known as bee bread. This is because the bee eats the pollen. When bees find a good supply of food they use sign language. They return to the hive and perform a dance to show other bees where to find food. There are two kinds of dances. The round dance tells the other bees that food is about 100 yards away or less. The wagging dance tells bees that food is at such an angle to the sun and how far away the food lies.

Tests have been made and even if the food is miles away, this dance is still extremely accurate. For some people bee venom is deadly, but for some people bee venom is good medicine. Some people who have arthritis (a swelling and pain in joints) pick up a bee by her head and hold her tail to the sore joint until the bee stings. The venom makes the joint swell up and this flushes out the arthritis. So as you can see, honeybees give us honey, wax, and comb. They also pollinate our flowers. Therefore they are a very important resource.

Animal Cruelty And Family Violence

For the past few years, I have been interested in learning about the problems society can face or do face; when it comes to animal cruelty and family violence. Even for a good amount of American families the family pet is loved and cared for. For others, it is a terrible thing to think about; but it happens. For many years, there has been a lot of issues families face when they witness animal cruelty. It is worse in children; whom witnessed the most animal cruelty and violence against one another in their homes. They learn from everything the parents do and may act upon it later on in life.

That is one of the main concerns that animal cruelty and family violence becomes a problem. Usually in this case, the results at the end never come out positive. I have learned so much after studying and researching over the internet, reading books from the library, or asking professionals. Professionals like, veterinarians, veterinarian technicians, animal behaviorist, and animal shelter workers. On a particular website, I found something on The Abuse of Animals and Domestic Violence. It was an article from A National Survey of shelters for women who are battered. Also, who witnessed animal cruelty in their homes before they were battered.

I read the article and found it quit interesting. Here is a part of what I found: A moment later Francine heard Nicky screaminNickys cry was so hard she couldnt talk. Id never heard a child cry like that. I held her in my arms until she calmed down enough to tell me what had happened. Mickey (Francines husband) had warned her that if he found the cat on the porch hed wring its neck. When he caught her with it the second time he took it out of her arms and just broke its neck in his two hands. (McNulty, 1989) You often hear, read, see, or often experience situations like this, to where omestic violence starts; with animal cruelty of some kind.

There are too many of these kinds of situations where people are very silent about. More people need to be more involved with the situations around them; including witnessing animal cruelty. Usually something that has to do with animal cruelty, means that a family or just a child who is in trouble. That may cause problems later on; if nothing is done about it. Not only because of animal welfare, but to the health of the human race; that usually means families or just society in general. Cruelty is a socially unacceptable behavior that intentionally causes nnecessary pain, suffering, or distress to a death of an animal.

The association of animal maltreatment with cases of child physical abuse, the sexual abuse of children, and partner battering or domestic violence. This usually starts off with maltreatment of animals, usually pets, may occur in homes where there is domestic violence. Domestic violence usually, most of the time starts with animals being abused by perpetrators for frighten their partners, as a threat of potential attacks, as a way to feel superior to others, who have no way of fighting back. From what I have researched, these kinds of situations are agreed that nterpersonal violence is the greatest single threat to human civilization.

A lot of problems are caused in family and in the rest of human civilization. This is because of animal cruelty. Whether it is a household pet or other animals roaming outside in neighborhood cities. Pets have been part of American families for years, where almost most of those families with school-age children, have at least one companion animal. These animals are often treated like members of the family. But, if the family is experiencing violence they become targets as well. Usually they are the firsts to experience violence efore the rest of the family.

The family pet is often an important source of comfort and stability to the victims of abuse, particularly children. But abusive family members may threaten, injure, or kill pets. Often, as a way of threatening or controlling others in the family. Many women and children, whom have been housed at shelters, have discussed incidents of pet abuse in the family. Children who have witnessed domestic violence or who have been the victims of physical or sexual abuse have witnessed an animal being murdered in front of them by the abuser. These are very important issues that society needs to be aware of.

It must be remembered that, when animals are being abused, people are at some kind of risk. It goes the other way around as well. So when animal cruelty is seen, it is important that it should be reported right away. For animal abuse is often one of the earliest signs of an individual or a family in trouble. Animal abuse is a serious concern for human health and safety. Most of the time it is women and children who are in trouble. There have been reports on battered women in shelters, who have discussed their boyfriend or husband had engaged in actual maltreatment and killing of an animal in their home.

They sually stay and go through this kind of treatment because these women are scared for their beloved pets. That is what the abuser wants to happen; so none in the outside world knows what is going on in the home. Maybe if more shelters would open up and allowed pets as well; they are victims of these situations. Then, women would get out of these terrible situations a lot sooner than they do. That is up to society to get more involved in these situations. People should report when things happen would be a start. It has to be remembered that animal cruelty is not a harmless venting of emotion in a healthy ndividual, this is a warning sign.

People abuse animals for the same reasons they abuse people. Abusing an animal is a way for a human to find power, joy, and fulfillment through the torture of a victim; they know cannot defend its self. The same thing goes for child abuse, spouse abuse, and rape. This is all done by someone who starts out abusing an animal. They should all be watched out for and pay attention to. There are reasons why people abuse animals are simply; to control the animal or a person. Adults who hurt animals will hurt people. It is sad to see families go for help in bad situations like this.

The reason they dont, is because they are aware that their pet will be hurt if they seek help for themselves. An abuser may make this clear by threatening to injure or kill an animal. When a parent makes an animal yelp and tells his child he will break her pets neck if she tells anyone what has happened. Because of this, the child may either act upon it or keep quiet. Children learn what parents do; to them they will thing wrong is right by living in those situations. This is a heartbreaking outcome for the child, and for society. The adults may feel helpless as the child does.

If they are not already being hurt; they fear they will be seen. They want to be safe, but dont want to leave a pet behind in a dangerous situation. Too often, they risk their own lives and stay in a dangerous situation for the pets sake. Animal abuse is frequently embedded in families scared by domestic violence. Animal cruelty must be taken seriously. Its not only a crime but also a warning of other violence; past, present, or future. It is usually done by a person who feels powerless, unnoticed and under the control of others. This is done to shock, threaten, intimidate, or offend.

Animal cruelty is done the most during child abuse. It is also rarely seen at uch an early stage. Children learn everything that the parent does. We can teach empathy, or we can encourage cruelty. In this case, a child witnessed to animal cruelty as well as abuse to them, is encouraged to cruelty rather than empathy. The classic triad is what children are at when they practice animal cruelty. A loving, supportive environment takes the child right out of the triad. The abuse of animals, especially chronic, is a gateway indication. No matter where it is committed the child learns from it.

Most caseworkers could tell you about cases in which a child abuser also hurt, or killed the victims pet. Children will learn to abuse animals; either as a sign that they are getting hurt by someone else or a cry for help. If nothing is done, the child will eventually hurt people. That would be because they werent taught from right and wrong. If children are taught to abuse animals, that is what they will do. Like for instance, a recent incident of road rage in California involving a Bichon Frise; which is a small dog, was thrown into traffic by an irate motorist.

Another, a thirteen-year old Saskatoon girl charged in connection with a series of cat mutilations attracted attention throughout North America. There are many factors that lead to incidents like this. Many children, who witnessed animal cruelty in their families, will mimic what they see and act out what they see. For example, thirty-two percent of the twenty- two women with children talk about children hurting or killing animals. The prevalence of pet abuse by children in these families was also disturbingly common.

Disturbed children kill animals to rehearse their own suicide, or to pre-empt an abusive parent from killing the pet. When perpetrated by children, animal abuse can represent a dangerous inability for a child to empathize with others. Sometimes or most of the time, when witnessed by children, animal maltreatment may be part of a pattern that sets a violent course which may be life long. For example, a writer, Margaret Mead, has written, One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a child is to kill or torture an animal and to get away with it.

This is true because children who are capable of animal cruelty, meaning; killing an animal, is capable of committing bigger crimes. That would be because they werent taught from the beginning or punished for the first crime they did. Witnessing parent and pet abuse may compromise childrens sychological adjustments, increase their propensity for interpersonal violence, and make childrens cruelty to animals more likely to emerge as a symptom of their distress. As a result some abused children may grow up to become abusive adults; if they dont get help in time.

Children who have witnessed domestic violence or who have been the victims of physical or sexual abuse, may also become animal abusers themselves; imitating the violence they have seen or experienced. Because of issues like this are not stopped from the beginning, worse things can happen. When a child mistreats an animal, will grow up o be insensitive towards other human beings; not just animals. For example, back in 1999, we remembered the horrific case of school violence, when Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold of Littleton, Colorado killed fourteen of their classmates and one teacher at Columbine High School.

In a recent report, both of the boys had mentioned they had mutilated animals and expressed interest in occult rituals. The report had also said that nineteen ninety-eight had also been a year for notorious crimes committed by young people with prior histories of animal abuse. The names of those children were; Kip Kinkel, who decapitated cats, issected live squirrels and blew up cows. Andrew Golden, shot dogs before he turned his guns on his classmates. Luke Woodham, beat and burned his own dog, Sparkle. Describing his dogs painful and tortured death as a thing of pure beauty. Michael Corneal, threw a cat into a bonfire.

All of these children were animal abusers and werent punished at that point. Only until they started to kill people; then society saw that they needed help. When the truth is they needed help when these children might have been brought up in messed up households. Consisting of domestic violence, but with a start of nimal abuse. They were to have empathy towards all living things; including animals and other citizens around them. As a result, they have caused bigger crimes; because bigger criminals or bigger murderers. Animal abusers take place in a complex net of disturbed family relations.

For example, animal abuse is found in families where there is child abuse and battered women as well. Children in these disturbed families, who witnessed the abuse of family companion pets, are more likely to abuse animals. Also children who commit animal cruelty is more likely to engage in criminal behavior as adults. Although, it isnt just youthful offenders who move from animal abuse to violence toward humans. For example, in a research, Russell Western Jr. , the man who was awaiting trial for shooting two police officers; shot his fathers cats before his assault.

There are more criminal adults who have started off murdering animals. Another example is a compelling array of serial killers and mass murderers; who had committed acts of animal abuse in their childhoods that often were noticed by neighbors. Names of some of these serial killers are: Mass-murdered and cannibal, Jeffrey Dahmer, killed neighbors pets and impaled a dogs head on a stick. Patrick Sherril, who murdered fourteen co-workers and then killed himself, stole pets then tied them up and allowed his own dog to mutilate them. David Berkowitz, the so-called Son-of-Sam, shot his neighbors Labrador retriever.

Albert DeSalvo, the Boston Strangler, shot arrows into boxes of trapped cats and dogs. Brenda Spencer, who fired fourty shots into a crowd of children, murdering 2, wounding 9 had a history of setting the tails of neighborhood cats and dogs. Carol Edmund Cole, who murdered thirty-five people, admitted his first violent act was strangling a puppy. Richard Allen Davis, kidnapper and murderer, doused cats with asoline and set them on fire. Those were examples of infamous serial killers who had started off killing animals; as children and then into bigger murderers.

That was because when they were young, they werent stopped right away. Neighbors nearby saw everything but never said anything. They could have been children who were abused or raped as young children and they never knew how to care. They acted out what they thought was the right thing to do; or out of anger. Taking out on an animal is easy at first because they thought that they could get away with it; and they did. At the end, they ended up killing people in society. These are all reasons why animal abuse is a problem in society. I think a major one.

The cons of all this, is that a lot of this is ignored in society. Also, too many people are killed by these incidents; animals as well. Animals are a part of society in almost everything humans do. Children respond better to animals which is probably a reason why, when they are taught wrong, they abuse animals. Animals wont always fight back. If more people would report what they see, what they think they might see. They should also get involve in helping more shelters; whether it is a human or animal shelter. Then you have the shelters who hold individuals from abused homes.

But most of them dont allow the families in need to bring their pets along. The pet should be allowed to go with the abused individuals; they are victims as well. Especially the children who need to get out of bad homes and have a pet that is in trouble; should be taken out together. That way the child and the pet are in a better environment; but also so that the child learns that what was happening to the animal was wrong too. As far as pros go, I can think of any pros of all of this. Only can hope for a better future and that their will be more involvement from society.

Predator/Prey Relationships

The relationship between predators and their prey is an intricate and complicated relationship; covering a great area of scientific knowledge. This paper will examine the different relationships between predator and prey; focusing on the symbiotic relations between organisms, the wide range of defense mechanisms that are utilized by various examples of prey, and the influence between predators and prey concerning evolution and population structure. Symbiosis is the interaction between organisms forming a long term relationship with each other.

Many organisms become dependent on others and they need one another or one needs the other to survive. Symbiotic interactions include forms of parasitism, mutualism, and commensalism. The first topic of discussion in symbiosis is parasitism. Parasitism is when the relationship between two animal populations becomes intimate and the individuals of one population use the other population as a source of food and can be located in or on the host animal or animal of the other populations (Boughey 1973). No known organism escapes being a victim of parasitism(Brum 1989).

Parasitism is similar to preditation in the sense that the parasite derives nourishment from the host on which it feeds and the predator derives nourishment from the prey on which it feeds(Nitecki 1983). Parasitism is different from most normal predator prey situations because many different parasites can feed off of just one host but very few predators can feed on the same prey(1973). In parasite-host relationships most commonly the parasite is smaller than the host. This would explain why many parasites can feed off of one single host.

Another difference in parasite-host relationships is that normally the parasite or group of parasites do not kill the host from feeding, whereas a predator will kill its prey(1983). Efficient parasites will not kill their host at least until their own life cycle has been completed(1973). The ideal situation for a parasite is one in which the host animal can live for a long enough time for the parasite to reproduce several times(Arms 1987). Parasites fall under two different categories according to where on the host they live. Endoparasites are usually the smaller parasites and tend to live inside of the host(1973).

These internal parasites have certain physiological and anatomical adaptations to make their life easier(1987). An example of this is the roundworm, which has protective coating around its body to ensure that it will not be digested. Many internal parasites must have more than one host in order to carry out reproduction(1989). A parasite may lay eggs inside the host it is living in, and the eggs are excreted with the hosts feces. Another animal may pick up the eggs of the parasite through eating something that has come into contact with the feces. The larger parasites tend to live on the outside of the host and are called ectoparasites(1973).

The ectoparasites usually attach to the host with special organs or appendages, clinging to areas with the least amount of contact or friction(1973). Both endo and ectoparasites have the capability of carrying and passing diseases from themselves to hosts and then possibly to predators of the host(1973). One example of this is the deer tick which can carry lyme disease and pass it on to humans or wildlife animals. The worst outbreaks of disease from parasites usually occur when a certain parasite first comes into contact with a specific population of hosts(1975).

An example of these ramifications would be the onset of the plague. Many parasites are unsuccessful and have a difficult time finding food because appropriate hosts for certain parasites may be hard to find(1987). To compensate for low survival rates due to difficulty in finding a host, many parasites will lay thousands or millions of eggs to ensure that at least some of them can find a host and keep the species alive(1987). The majority of young parasites do not find a host and tend to starve to death. Parasites are also unsuccessful if they cause too much damage to their host animal(1987).

Parasites are what is called host specific, this means that their anatomy, metabolism, and life-style is adapted to that of their host(1973). Some parasites react to the behavior of their hosts, an interaction called social parasitism(1989). More simply put a parasite might take advantage of the tendencies of a particular species for the benefit of its own. An example of this is the European Cuckoo. In this case the grown cuckoo destroys one of the host birds eggs and replaces it with one of its own(1991).

The host bird then raises the cuckoo nestling even when the cuckoo is almost too large for the nest and much bigger than the host bird(1991). This is a case where the parasite uses the host to perform a function and making life and reproduction easier on itself. Parasite and host relationships hold an important part of homeostasis in nature. (1975). Parasitism is an intricate component in the regulation of population of different species in nature. Mutualism is another topic at hand in discussing predator-prey relationships. Mutualism is a symbiotic relationship in which both members of the association benefit(1989).

Mutualistic interaction is essential to the survival or reproduction of both participants involved(1989). The best way to describe the relationships of mutualism is through examples. We will give examples of mutualism from different environments. Bacteria that lives inside mammals and in their intestinal tract receive food but also provide the mammals with vitamins that can be synthesized(1975). Likewise termites whose primary source of food is the wood that they devour, would not be able to digest the food if it was not for the protozoans that are present in their intestinal tract(Mader 1993).

The protozoans digest the cellulose that the termites cannot handle. Mycorrhizae which are fungal roots have a mutualistic symbiotic relationship with the roots of plants(1989). The mycorrhizae protect the plants roots and improve the uptake of nutrients for the plant, in exchange the mycorrhizae receives carbohydrates from the plant. Mutualistic partners have obtained many adaptations through coevolution. Coevolution has led to a synchronized life cycle between many organisms and through mutualism many organisms have been able to coincide together as a working unit rather than individuals.

Commensalism is a relationship in which one species benefits from another species that is unaffected(1975). For instance several small organisms may live in the burrows of other larger organisms at no risk or harm to the larger organisms. The smaller organisms receive shelter and eat from the larger organisms excess food supply. An example of commensalism is a barnacles relationship with a whale. The barnacles attach themselves to the whale and they are provided with both a home and transportation. Another example are the Remoras which are fish that attach themselves to the bellies of sharks by a suction cup dorsal fin.

The Remora fish gets a free ride and can eat the remains of a sharks meals. Clownfish are protected from predators by seeking refuge in the tentacles of sea anemones. Most other fish stay away because the anemones have poison that does not affect the clownfish, therefore the clownfish is safe. Commensalism consists of dominant predators and opportunistic organisms that feed off of the good fortune of the larger predators. Another topic concerning predator prey relationships is the defense mechanisms that are necessary for prey to outwit their predators.

In order for an animal to sustain life, it must be able to survive among the fittest of organisms. An animals anti-predatory behavior determines how long it can survive in an environment without becoming some other animals prey. Some key antipredator adaptations will be described and examined . Perhaps the most common survival strategy is hiding from ones enemies(Alcock,1975). Predators are extremely sensitive to movement and locate their prey by visual cues. By getting rid of these key signals, enemies(predators) are forced to invest more time and energy looking for them. This may increase the time a prey has to live and reproduce(1975).

Hiding is generally achieved through cryptic coloration and behavior(1975). How effective an organisms camouflage is depends on how long an organism can remain immobile for a long amount of time. Animals can resemble a blade of grass, a piece of bark, a leaf, a clump of dirt, and sand or gravel. In less than 8 seconds, a tropical flounder can transform its markings to match unusual patterns on the bottom of their tanks in the laboratory(Adler,1996). When swimming over sand, the flounder looks like sand, and if the tank has polka dots, the flounder develops a coat of dots(1996).

Without any serious changes, the flounder can blend surprisingly well with a wide variety of backgrounds (Ramachandran, 1996). Behavioral aspects of camouflage in organisms include more than just remaining motionless. An organism will blend into its background only if it chooses the right one. When the right one is chosen, the organism will position itself so that its camouflage will match or line-up with the background. Despite the fact that an organism may be beautifully concealed, it may still be discovered at some point by a potential consumer(Alcock,1975).

Detecting a predator is another antipredator adaptation that is very useful. Some prey species have an advantage over other prey species by being able to detect a predator before it spots them or before it gets to close to them. In order to detect enemies in good time to take appropriate action, prey species are usually alert and vigilant whenever they are at all vulnerable(Alcock,1975). A test was conducted in the early 1960s at Tufts University dealing with ultrasonic sound wave that bats give off, and the way moths can detect these soundwaves(May,1991).

In most cases bats are blind, so they rely only on their sense of hearing to help them maneuver and hunt while flying in the dark. Also flying in the dark/nighttime, are insects, moths in this case. In a laboratory, bats and moths were observed, and every time a moth would come close to a bat giving off an ultrasonic signal, the moth would turn and go the opposite way(1991). When the moth would become too close to the bat, it would perform a number of acrobatic maneuvers such as rapid turns, power dives, looping dives, and spirals(1991).

Detection by groups of animals will usually benefit the whole group formation. By foraging together several animals may increase the chance that some individual in the herd, flock, or covey will detect a predator before it is too late(Alcock,1975). Each individual benefits from the predator detection and alarm behavior of the others, which will increase the probability that it will be able to get away. There is always a chance that prey will be chased by a predator. Evading predators is sometimes necessary for an organism to employ, to make sure they will not be captured when being pursued.

Outrunning an enemy is the most obvious evasion tactic(Alcock,1975). When a deer or antelope is being chased, they dont just run in one direction to flee, they alter their flight path. The prey will demonstrate erratic and unpredictable movements(1975). The deer or antelope may zig and zag across a savanna to make it more difficult for the predator to capture them. Repelling predators is a strategy that can either be last chance tactic or the primary line of defense for an organism. This attack on the predator is used drive it away from the prey.

These adaptations can be classified as (1)mechanical repellents, (2)chemical repellents, (3)and group defenses(Alcock,1975). An example of a mechanical repellent is sharp spines or hairs that make organisms undesirable. Some chemical repellents involve substances that impair the predators ability to move or cause a predator to retreat due to undesirable odor, bad taste, or poisonous properties. Groups of organisms can also repel predators. Truly social insects utilize many ingenious group defenses(1975). For example, soldier ants posses an acidic spray and a sticky glue to douse their enemies with(1975).

They can also chop and stab their enemies with their sharp jaws. One of the last types of antipredator behaviors/adaptations is mimicry. An organism that is edible but looks like it is a bad tasting organism is known as a Batesian mimic. A good example of this mimicry works is how birds at first were more likely to go after the more conspicuous looking items rather than those that didnt stand out(Adler,1996). If too many mimics exist, more predators will consume them, and soon they will become a primary food source. Organisms that share the same style of coloration take part in Mullerian mimicry.

An example of this is the yellow and black stripes on bees and wasps. The symbiont states that this single look helps bird-brained predators to learn which organisms to avoid. This warning coloration in turn saves the organisms life as well as helps the predator to avoid a distasteful, maybe even toxic meal. Defense mechanisms vary drastically, and change according to different circumstances. The ability of an organism to survive depends solely on how well it can use its defense mechanisms to prolong its life. The next topic of discussion is the relationship between predators and their prey.

Predators and prey effect each other from day to day interactions to the evolution of each other. Predator and prey populations move in cycles, the number of predators will influence the number of prey and the number of prey available will influence the population of predators. Predators and their prey also influence the evolution of each other. Michael Brooke(1991) points out that natural selection should favor traits that help a species survive. A general example would be the increase in speed of potential prey. These evolutionary traits are usually followed with an evolution in the predator.

Using the increase of maximum speed as an example, evolution will favor predators that are fast enough to continue to catch the prey. This will lead to the evolution of a faster predator. Brooke (1991)compares the evolutionary process to an arms race, for both sides have to keep advancing in order to stay alive. While predator/prey populations fluctuate, it is important to note that they operate within a cycle. In an ideal cycle, the predators and prey will establish stable populations. Predators play a crucial role in the population of the prey. The importance of predators can be seen in the Kaibab Plateau in Arizona(Boughey, 1968).

At the beginning of this century, 4,000 deer inhabited 727, 000 acres of land. Over the next 40 years, 814 mountain lion were removed from the area. At the same time, over 7,000 coyote were removed. When the predators were removed, the population jumped up to 100,000 deer by 1924 (Boughey, 1968). This population crashed in the next two years by 60% due to overpopulation and disease. Without predators, the prey could not establish a stable population and the land supported a much smaller number than the estimated carrying capacity of 30,000 (Boughey, 1968).

The example can work in reverse; an increased number of predators feeding on a limited number of prey can lead to the extinction of the predators. This is the case with the ancient trilobites, these marine anthropods died 200 million years ago in the Permian age(Carr, 1971). According to Carr, (1971)over 60 families of this animal have been found in fossil records. This highly successful creature became extinct due to changes in the prey population. During the Permian period, glaciation took place that changed the availability of the trilobites food source, algae.

One may conclude that the prey population dwindled and the trilobites could no longer support themselves. Parasite/prey relations fit under the topic of predator/prey relationships. Parasites feed off of their prey just as predators do(Ricklefs, 1993), but it is in the interest of the parasite to keep its host alive. In some cases, the parasite will act so efficiently that it will lead to the death of its host, but most parasites can achieve a balance with their hosts. Even though parasites might not lead directly to the death of its host, it can effect the host in a variety of other ways.

A host could become weaker and not be able to compete for food or reproduce, or the parasite could make its host less desirable to mate with, as is the case with Drosophila nigrospiracula(the Sanoran desert fruit fly). Michal Polak et al. (1995) conducted a study examining the effects of Macrocheles subbadius (a Ectoparasitic mite) on the sexual selection of the fruit flies. The mites feed off of animal dung and rotting plant tissue (Polak et al. , 1995) and relies on the fruit flies for transportation between feeding sites as well as a food source.

Polak et al. found that male flies infested with the mites had less of a chance of mating compared to males that had never been infested. But Polak et al. (1995) also found that once the mites were removed from the flies and the male was allowed to recover from any damage done by the mite, the fruit fly had the same chance of mating than a male which was never infested. This suggests that females are selective when choosing their mates. With females choosing not to mate with males that are infected with the mites, the evolution of the species is being affected.

Males that exhibit resistance to mites are favored, so these characteristics will be passed onto the offspring, leading to the development of mite resistant Drosophila nigrospiracula. There are several theories on what basis the mites affect the males. Based on the research compiled by Polak et al. (1995), males could be overlooked because infested males might not survive to help raise the offspring, or males do not mate because they are weakened by the parasites and do not perform well in contests for mates. Whatever the case, parasites have an effect on their prey.

In a similar scenario, the parasitic relationship between cuckoos and other birds, the development of resistance to a parasite leads to the evolution of the parasite. This polymorphism is known as coevolution. Nitecki uses grass as a simple example of this phenomenon(1983). Grass evolves a resistance to a strain of rust by making a single gene substitution, and the rust counters this step with its own single gene substitution(Nitecki, 1983). He adds that many parasites are host specific, so they are keyed into their host and can adjust to the appropriate changes when necessary.

This is why parasites are a continual problem, not just an irritant that is rendered extinct by one simply change in the hosts evolution. This helps explain why the cuckoo continues to successfully lay its eggs in the nests of Meadow Pipits, Reed Warblers, Pied Wagtails, and Dunnocks(Brooke, 1991). According to Brooke(1991), the host birds usually are deceived by the cuckoos egg and then raise the cuckoo chick instead of their own. By examining the cuckoo, it is easy to see how evolution has perfected the parasitic process.

According to Brooke (1991), the cuckoo will watch its prey as it builds its nest, wait until both parents are away from the nest, then enter the nest to remove one of the original eggs and lay its own. Each species of cuckoo has evolved to specifically target one of the four possible birds. According to Brooke, (1991) the Great Reed Warbler-Cuckoo will lay an egg that is similar in size and color to the hosts, and the cuckoo has perfected the intrusion to a science, spending about 10 seconds in the nest of its host. The next step of parasitism comes once the cuckoo has hatched.

The process that the chick goes through is described by Brooke (1991); the chick hatches before the rest of the clutch due to its shorter incubation period and then pushes the other eggs out of the nest. The host family will not abandon the chick, while the exact reason is not known, there are several theories. According to Brooke (1991), the parents have nothing to compare the chick with or do not decide that it is too late to raise a new clutch and will raise their adopted chick. Brooke describes some of the tests carried out in his research (1991) concerning the factors that influence the rejection rate of cuckoo eggs.

Most birds will not reject eggs that are similar too their eggs, but larger eggs are have a higher rate of rejection. But if the host birds see the cuckoo in the nest, then the rate of rejection is much increased(Brooke, 1991), which explains why cuckoos have evolved such a fast predatory process. Brooke shows an example of the evolutionary process at work when he examines the Dunnocks relationship with the cuckoo(1991). The Dunnock-Cuckoo has not developed an egg that mimics the Dunnock egg because Dunnocks accept eggs of any size and color.

Brooke (1991) believes that the Dunnock is a new species of bird under parasitism, for only 2% of the Dunnocks are preyed upon in England. Therefore, Dunnocks have not yet developed any defenses against the cuckoo, so the cuckoo has no need to develop any traits to aid in parasitism. Brooke (1991) showed other examples of evolution by testing isolated species of hosts. These birds were not as discriminating, implying that they lacked the evolutionary advancements of detecting and rejecting parasitic eggs. The cuckoo and their hosts are clear examples of how both the predators and they prey affect the evolution of each other.

In some cases, predator/prey relations take place between members of the same species. Many animals exhibit group behavior; worker bees serve the queen bee and wolves follow an established ranking system. But when members of the same species endanger each other for individual protection, the member of the species that faces death is being used as prey by the member of the species surviving. Robert Heisohn describes this relationship in lions when territorial disputes occur. The leader lion will be 50-200 meters ahead of the laggards when approaching an invading lion(Heinsohn, 1995).

The leader will face severe injury and even death while the laggards reduce their risk by staying behind(Heinsohn, 1995). Similar behavior has been observed in many species of birds. The hatchlings commit siblicide in order to maximize their own chances of survival as described by Hugh Drommond et al. (1990). Drommond et al. observed cases of siblicide in black eagles; one of the chicks is hatched usually 3 days before the other and therefore is significantly larger than its sibling (1990). Drommond et al. observed the older eaglet deal 1569 pecks to its younger sibling in 3 days, eventually killing the younger chick.

This phenomena supports several key concepts in evolution. The older sibling is competing with others for resources(food and nesting space), so killing the weaker member promotes the survival of the older bird (Drommond et al. , 1990). If resources are limited and both siblings cannot survive, the species will continue to survive due to the death of the younger sibling. However, Drommond et al. (1990) point out that there are several evolutionary losses that occur when a sibling dies; reproductive potential is lost as well as a degree of insurance(in case one of the offspring does not survive to maturity).

Excuse the pun, but putting all of the eggs in one basket is a large risk. Predators and their prey are part of a cycle; both are necessary components and they depend on each other for their existence. Any change made in one area will affect the other. Overall, predator prey relations are very complex. By breaking the topic into the three topics of; symbiotic relationships, defense mechanisms, and the influence relationship between predators and prey. It is important to see how all three of these subjects tie in together.

Parasitism is an example of a symbiotic relationship, parasites are predators living off of their prey, and parasites also effect the evolution of their hosts. Natural selection favors species that are resistant to parasites, so these organisms evolve. The organisms have a range of defense mechanisms available in order to protect themselves from predators. So, predators now face tougher prey, so they undergo evolution in order to stay successful. This completes the cycle and leads to a diverse and interesting world.

The Puma, or Felis concolor

The Puma, or Felis concolor as it is known by scientists, is found in the Western Uniter States, generally west of the Rocky Mountains and in Southwestern Canada. Other names for the Puma are the Mountain Lion, and Panther. This species of cat has many subspecies throughout the United States, and Central Ameica, however it is endangered in Florida. Generally Pumas have a life-span of about 10 to 15 years and have litters ranging from 2-3 cubs. The Pumas’ fur varies depending on the region it is in, and usually they have longer fur in the mountain regions.

The Puma can be found in many habitats such as moutains, swamps, grasslands, and mountain forests. As the seasons change it generally follows migrating prey to different habitats. The Puma usually romes in places where it can stalk its prey, alone, such as cattle and horses. These factors may have causes the bad reputation that pumas are given. When hunting, Pumas use their powerful legs and have been able to achieve running jumps of 40 feet when it comes to hunting. Since the Pumas are about 35-85 kilograms, and 1100-2000 millimeters in length, it is relative to the size of the Cheetah, which makes it able to hunt so well.

The species eats small and large mammals, and it is a carnivore, so it needs meat to survive. The Puma is one of the top levels in the food chain, and without them, there would be a surplus in things like deer, and cattle. The current population of the Puma in Florida is 50 as of 1999. Because of hostility toward the animal due to its reputation, highways being built through out the state, unsuccessful breeding, road-kills and contimination of their food and land. It is thought that in the next 30 years, the species will die out completely without people stepping in.

The amount of money being spent to save the species was not disclosed. A few breeding facilities have been set up in Florida to preserve the species, unfortunately, to the government saving the cougar is of very low status to them. Thankfully, the LIOC ( Endangered Species Conservation Federation) and the American Association of Zoo Keepers, and the Exotic Feline Educational Society have been trying to take steps to increase awareness about the endangerment of the Puma. There are also organizations that allow people to Adopt-A-Puma.

To purchase an exotic cat, it can run a person up to four thousand dollars. I undoubtfully think that the Puma is worth being saved. Not only it is beautiful, but it keeps a balance in our enviornment. I find it quite sad that due to the negligence of people, a species is almost wiped out. Without the Puma, it could lead to overpopulation of herbivores, and then lead to overgrazing. Like all animals, the Puma has an important place in the ecosystem, and people should be aware of its vital benifits to our world.

Animals In Psychological Research

An increasing number of researchers, scientists and practitioners are questioning the use of animals in research on ethical, moral, socio-political and scientific grounds. Use of animal research data to affect change in their patients is rarely used by clinical psychologists. This is certainly a public interest issue as it involves an enormous amount of brutality. Animal research is a very lucrative business, since billions of tax dollars are invested in it annually. An enormous amount of this money going towards researcher’s salaries, overhead costs, animal husbandry expansion and building maintenance.

These billions of dollars can be redirected to prevention, public health programs, treatment and clinical research. There are too many missed opportunities for advancement in psychology due to money spent on theoretical, repetitive and exploitative animal research. In our society we have come to see that animal research is an easy way to stay alive in the “publish or perish” world of academia. Nearly anything can be proven using animals as test subjects which is evident in the way that the tobacco industry still claims that their research proves that cigarettes do not cause cancer.

Linder, 1998). In spite of the fact that animal experimentation can be traced back as far as Galen (ca. 100 AD), its significance in consumer safety and medical research and is a relatively recent phenomenon. In 1865, Claude Bernard published his “introduction to the study of experimental medicine”, which marked the beginning of animal experimentation as a scientific method of research. (Menache, 1998). The industry has always been quick to exploit the less than conclusive results of animal tests, especially in fields such as onconlogy.

Consequently, the drug saccharin remains on sale to the public because it appears to cause bladder cancer only in male rats. The ingestible contraceptive drug Depo-Provera was banned in the United States over twenty years ago on the basis that is caused cancer in baboons and dogs. However, The Food and Drug Administration and The American Health Regulatory Authority recently reinstated the drug because twenty years of human experience in those countries, which did not prohibit its use, had convinced the Food and Drug Administration that Depo-Provera did not cause cancer in humans.

Another example that is even more bizarre is the drug Tamoxifin, which is used to treat human breast cancer. Even though Tamoxifin reduces the incidence of mammary cancer in rodents, it actually increases the presence of liver cancer in rodents, and appears to be also toxic to the kidney (Menache, 1998). Due to the unavoidable biological differences between human beings and animals, the results of animal tests can’t be applied to human beings with any degree of confidence.

At the 1989 scientific workshop held at the Ciba Foundation past scientific director of Huntington Research Center (U. K. tated that the best guess for the correlation of extreme reactions in man and animal toxicity data is somewhere between 5% and 25%. The information translates into unacceptable risk levels for the general consumer public. To illustrate this point, the General Accounting office in the United Stated reported that between the years 1976-1985, out of two hundred medications introduced over that period of time, 51% were either withdrawn from the market completely or else re-labeled, because of severe side effects not previously noticed. The Food and Drug Administration has been faulted on animal drug data.

In a report to Congress in 1992, the General Accounting Office found that the Food and Drug Administration in many instances did not carry out inspections to verify the accuracy of data given by private laboratories. Due to FDA’s incompetent management the agency was unable to fulfill its task to protect the safety and health of animals and people (Menache, 1998). Professional groups of medical doctors, like the Medical Research Modernization Committee, are now at the cutting edge on the scientific movement advocating that animal tests be replaced with the new methodologies.

In addition to the priceless contributions to medical science of clinical observation, epidemiology, autopsy studies, non-invasive scanning, we are now entering a new world of technologies involving tissue and organ cultures. Furthermore, what is more important is the increasing availability of tissues of human origin, which will reduce the margin of error even further, while compared with extrapolating results from animal tests to humans (Menache, 1998). Ever since the Gulf War, an estimated twenty thousand returning U. S. soldiers have been experiencing a series of mysterious illnesses.

Symptoms included chronic fatigue, joint pain, rashes, hair loss, memory loss, lack of bowel control and even brain damage. Disturbing repots of miscarriages, stillbirths, birth defects and death among the babies conceived by the returning soldiers have also emerged. There is mounting evidence that the Desert Storm Syndrome may be contagious. It has been learned that the American soldiers were exposed to experimental vaccines, drugs and pesticides. On a daily basis the soldiers were required to take an experimental, anti-nerve drug called Pyridostigmine Bromine.

The drug was supposed to be a precautionary measure that would protect the soldiers in case Saddam Hussein engaged in biological, chemical warfare. Additionally, the soldiers were given a powerful insect repellent called DEET and the uniforms were also treated with another pesticide called Permethrin (Supress, 1998). It is obvious that the soldiers were exposed to countless chemicals such as nerve drugs, pesticides, depleted uranium and possible other chemicals that we are not aware of. In addition they were also exposed to experimental vaccines, drugs and pesticides.

We already know why these problems have occurred, and that these chemicals are responsible for these extremely serious health problems. All of the chemicals mentioned above had been tested on different animals prior to their use on the soldiers. Nevertheless, the animal tests were evidently not able to prevent the Gulf War veterans and their children from becoming the real guinea pigs. It is a known fact that the military uses unknown numbers of animals to test all kinds of weapons, including atomic bombs and its chemical and biological weapon arsenal.

But it would be a terrible mistake to assume that the military used only animals, and not humans, as guinea pigs. Over the last decades it has been repeatedly revealed that our military has been caught red-handed conducting experiments not only on thousands of unsuspected and no consenting United Stated soldiers but also on American civilians. During the NBC program Now, entomologist James Moss, PH. D formerly with the United States department of agriculture stated that he wanted to conduct a serious of experiments on rats for the Department of Defense.

The intend and purpose of this experiment was to expose the rats to the drugs, chemicals and pesticides that the American soldiers were exposed to in order to see if the rats live or die. Why bother with animal experiments when we already know what happened to human beings? The fact remains that, even if we didn’t know what happens to humans, animal experiments will never be able to tell us anything about human conditions. Each species of animal is a different biochemical entity and the results of such studies and experiments can’t be extrapolated from one species to another.

Supress, 1998). Stroke is a dominant cause of sickness and death. However as Dr. Robert Sharpe reports, it’s human studies that hold the key to success, not animal studies. Human epidemiological studies have the power to save millions of lives, showing that major advances can be achieved without animal experiments. Moreover, animal tests have a dubious record in predicting useful drugs to combat the effects of a stroke. Animal researchers indicate that barbiturates could protect against the effects on the stroke, experiments on dogs, rabbits, and monkeys.

In human stroke victims, however, barbiturates had little or no protective effect. By comparison, the drug nimodipine can help people with a specific form of a stroke such as sub-arachnoids hemorrhage, but the animal data is conflicting and inconsistent. In application with cats and baboons, for instance, nimodipine produced no overall beneficial effect. Furthermore, as Dr. Sharpe states: “the leading cause of deaths in patients suffering form sub arachnoid hemorrhage is cerebral vasospasm, a condition in which the blood vessels in the brain constrict.

Human cerebra blood vessels, obtained within twenty-hours of death, have been used to study the problem since little is known about the underlying processes. ” (Supress, 1998, p. 3). Researchers at the University of Gottingen stress the importance of human tissue since “there are considerable advantage is the possible use of pathologically damaged vessels, for example, from atherosceletoric lesions, which are more difficult to obtain from animals. ” The researchers conclude that much needed improvements in treatment can be expected from human tissue studies. (Supress, 1998 p. 3).

The Medical Research Modernization Committee (MRMC) has reviewed scores of so-called animals “models” of human diseases and found that they have little or no relevance to human health. Dr. Kaufman explains further that what they found with the study of non-human diseases in non-human animals that it is a fundamentally unsound methodology. (Kaufman, 1998). Despite animal researchers routinely take credit for virtually every medical advance; a growing number of medical historians are revealing that medical progress has rested on human clinical investigation, not animal research.

The most valuable medical research tools are clinical tools, such as autopsies, thorough observation of patient’s conditions, tissue biopsies and epidemiology. (Kaufman, 1998) The use of animals for research and testing is only one of many investigative techniques available. Dr. Barnard believes that although animal experiments are sometimes intellectually attractive, they are poorly suited to addressing the urgent health problems of our era, such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, birth defects and AIDS.

In addition, animal experiments can mislead researchers or contribute to illness or deaths by failing to predict the toxic effects of drugs. The U. S. General Accounting Office reviewed 198 of the 209 new drugs marketed between years of 1976 and 1985 and found that 52% had “serious postapproval risks” not predicted by animal tests or limited human trials. These risks were defined as adverse side effects that could lead to disability, hospitalization or death. Consequently, these drugs had to be relabeled with new warnings or withdrawn from the market.

Barnard, 1998). Human population studies of HIV infection elucidated how the virus was transmitted and helped guide intervention programs. Using human cells and serum in vitro studies allowed researchers to identify the AIDS virus and establish how it causes disease. Many animals have been used in AIDS research, but without much in the way of concrete results. For example, the extensively reported monkey studies using the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIIV) under unnatural conditions suggested that oral sex presented a transmission risk.

However, this study did not help extrapolate whether oral sex transmitted HIV in humans or not. (Barnard, 1998). Experimenters have been infecting chimps with the HIV virus since 1984. In spite of being infected with several different strains of the virus, none have become clinically ill. Experimenters designed treatments to specifically destroy the cells, which are thought to be most active in protecting the body from HIV infections. In addition to being co -infected with other viruses, which were presumed to help HIV gain a foothold.

There are many physiologic and anatomic differences between humans and chimpanzees. These differences make them a poor “model” for humans. The differences in the chimpanzee and the human immune system are dramatic and emphasize the impracticality of using these animals as a model for human AIDS. ( Tracher, 1998). To predict human causes for birth defects has relied heavily on animal experiment. Although, these have typically proved to be embarrassingly poor predictors of what can happen to humans.

In nearly all-animal birth defects test, scientists are left scratching their heads as to whether humans are more similar the animals that develop birth defects or like those who do not. The rates for most birth defects are needed to trace possible genetic and environmental factors associated with birth defects, just as population studies linked heart disease to cholesterol and lung cancer to smoking. (Barnard, 1998). The issue of what role, if any, animal experimentation played in past discoveries in not relevant to what is necessary now for research and safety testing.

Prior to scientist developed the cell and tissue cultured common today, animals were routinely used to harbor infectious organisms. But there are few diseased for which this is the case-modern method for vaccine productions are safer and more efficient. Animal toxicity tests to determine the potency of drugs such as digitalis and insulin have largely been replaced with sophisticated laboratory tests that do not involve animals. (Barnard, 1998).

The results of animal tests can’t be applied to human beings due to biological, physiological and anatomical differences. In my opinion, we can’t rely on misleading and faulty information obtained from animal experiments. Animal experiments put human health in risk and danger. Animal experiments showed to be useless in the past, so why should ” we” exploit the animals? Why should we make them suffer and cause unnecessary pain? Good science and scientist is an alternative to animal research.

The Deer Essay

The deer has been around as long as man can remember. It has always been in North and South America, and not that long ago was brought to Europe. The deer has been hunted for centuries by Stone Age man, American Indians, and now modern day hunters. The weapons used to hunt deer have changed as time goes on. They were hunted with rocks by Stone Age man, with spears and hand crafted bow and arrows by the Indians, with guns and still today the bow and arrow by modern day hunters.

The purpose of my paper is to discuss the types of deer in the world today, what habitat they ive in, their instincts or habits, the over population of the whitetail deer in the United States, and the large sport of hunting deer. Their are three major types of deer in the world today. There is the whitetail deer, mule deer, and blacktail deer. The whitetail is the most popular of the three. The whitetail deer is broken up into many different species. The northwestern whitetail, Texas whitetail, northeastern whitetail, southeastern whitetail, Coues whitetail, Mexican whitetail, and the Key whitetail are all the species in the Americas today. he mule deer s only broken into two different species.

The Rocky Mountain mule deer and the desert mule deer are the two species. The blacktail deer is broken into two species also. There is the Sitka blacktail and the Columbia blacktail (Lawrence 60-62). Deer can live and flourish in just about any habitat. They are the only large animal that lives every where in North America. Deer live in most of Central America and in many parts of South America. The whitetail deer inhabits Central America, Mexico, all the U. S. except Alaska and Hawaii, southern Canada, and South America.

Recently ave been brought to Europe, the West Indies, and New Zealand. The mule deer lives in southwestern Canada, twenty two U. S. states, northwestern Coahuila, northern Chihuahua, northern Sonora, Texas, Arizona, northern Mexico, and southern California. The blacktail deer mainly inhabits the Pacific Coast. It lives between southwestern Alaska and southern California. In the north the blacktail lives in Vancouver, British Colombia, islands of Queen Charlotte, and have been brought to the islands in Prince William Sound.

Towards the south the blacktail lives in California and t the turn of the century were brought to Hawaii (Lawrence 60-62). Deer like all animals have instincts or habits. Most deer, no matter where they live have the same instincts. For example all deer in the northern hemisphere breed in November. This breeding period is called the rut. During the rut the only thing deer are thinking about is breeding. They pay no attention to cars on the road and that is why at this time more than fifty percent of deer that get hit in a year get hit during the rut.

While the rut is going on in November all the bucks are checking out all the doe to see if they eet their standards. Bucks are also showing of to the does by flaunting his rack and fighting and defeating other bucks to show their superiority (www. ohiowildlife. com). Most all bucks are dominate and aggressive animals. There are a few older ones who do not have any desire to fight. Instead of fighting they hide all day. Between August and October is when deer shed their velvet. During this time bucks hang around with each other. They spar for fun with each other. hey stay friendly with each other till the rut (Ingram 49-51).

Just about all deer have the same eating habits. Deer eat mainly etween sundown and sunrise. Almost never will you see a deer go and eat in a field in brood daylight. They eat in the fields at night but never during the day. During the day, when they occasionally theyll eat close and around the fields where they can feel safe and still get good crops. When the sun starts to come up they head back to their bedding areas. On their way back to their bedding areas, or whatever movement they do during the day they follow tree, fence, and creek lines.

Deer that live adjacent big farms with fields get to know farm machines, but split as soon as they see different vehicles. Deer usually sleep during the day and do as much as possible at night when they feel safer(Murray 44). When it snows deer move around without worry because snow makes the woods or fields quiet, so its easier to hear things. Even though their hearing gets better in snow their smelling gets worse. They dont lose any ability to smell, the scents in the woods are covered and not allowed to spread. Deer turn gray in winter to be blend in to there surroundings. They have a tough time walking in deep snow.

In awful storms deer go under or into thick cover and can and will stay there for days. A big snow storm will also mess up dear eating habits. They are forced into eating twigs and buds of small trees. In winter, when there is no snow, they normally eat crop remains, acorns, broad leaves, weeds, and grass (Almy 104-107). The overpopulation of deer is becoming a big problem in most of the U. S. today. Many states are encouraging people to hunt to lower the number of deer in an area. In some places their are so many that the deer are getting very skinny and sick because of lack of food.

In the U. S. today their is an estimated average of thirteen million deer, ompared to the turn of the century when there was only five hundred thousand. Over two million are killed each year by hunters and cars. Even though that two million a year are killed, range and population are going up (Lawrence 60-62). Most states have opened up state owned property for the use of the public to hunt. There are so many doe, female deer, in the U. S. today that most that most of them do not get to breed, because there are not enough bucks. Many towns in the U. S. re trying to get hunters to hunt more doe in hope that it brings down their population.

They are encouraging hunters by lowering tag costs (www. ohiowildlife. com). Deer hunting has become a very large sport in the world today. It is enjoyed by males and females of all ages. Hunters use a wide variety of weapons when hunting deer. The most commonly used are the rifle, shotgun, and bow and arrow. The rifle is more popular than the shotgun and bow. The bow and arrow were never really used until the late seventies, but now has become very popular. The bow is the safest and quietest weapon used to hunt deer.

For example in the state of Ohio, since 1943 there as only been one death from a bow hunting accident. Crossbows are sometimes used to hunt deer also. In some states, for example Massachusetts, crossbows are outlawed. The deer that is hunted the most is the whitetail deer. Deer hunting has become such a popular sport that last year in Ohio it contributed two hundred million dollars to Ohios economy. The deer hunter is said to spend an average of about four hundred dollars a year on hunting. That doesnt include cost of a deer hunting licenses and permits.

Illegal deer poaching does happen a lot believe it or not. States are making a big effort to try and stop it by setting up hotlines for people to call if they witness any illegal poaching (www. ohiowildlife. com). Deer hunting has become one of Prince William of England most favorite things to do. At 14 he shot his first deer. Prince Harry, Williams younger brother, only twelve, is very interested in hunting too. Even Princes Diana has hunted and shot a deer. She was only thirteen when she shot it and is said to have been bored by hunting (Prince William bags a stag, getting blooded and prompting an outcry 62).

What you should have learned in this paper is the types of deer that live in the world today, what habitat deer live in, their habits, the over population of the whitetail deer in the United States, and the large sport of hunting deer. I just got into bow hunting last year, that is why I decided to do the deer for my term paper. I was introduced to bow hunting by my cousins in New Jersey. I went down there to visit last year and my cousins are the best bow hunters in the state of New Jersey. In the I. B. O tournaments the last three years one of them has come in first and the other in second every year.

They were so happy that I wanted to start bow hunting they set me up and gave me all the goods. They brought me out hunting and in twenty minutes one of them had a doe. Since then I have been buying all the equipment I need and practicing every week. I think deer are wonderful animals and I hope to bag one this year. If you are never not sure about getting into the sport, do it, its the best thing I ever did. Even if you are against the killing of deer go out some day and just sit in the woods and watch them they are gracious animals.

Animal Rights Essay

Ever since The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in England in 1824 was formed there has been long running debates on the topic of animal rights. The first societies were formed to protect and maintain human treatment of work animals, such as cattle, horses and house hold pets. Towards the end of the 19th century more organizations were formed, this time to protest the use of animals in scientific experimentation. In todays society groups such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) have continued these traditional fights as well as adding new agendas.

These new agendas include hunting and fishing, and dissection of animals in science classes. This paper will discuss the pros and cons of animal experimentation and research, animals in the classroom, animal organizations and hunting. Along with these topics my personal opinion will be stated, before and after researching the topic. The rights of animals have always been important to me during my life. This is due to the fact that I have had a dog for a pet for as long as I remember. On this topic I feel as though having domesticated animals in the home is fine as long as proper care is taken of them.

As for more controversial issue like animal research and experimentation my views vary. A few years ago I felt that any research or experimentation on animals was inhumane and unjust. However after maturing and becoming more aware of the world, I now feel as though there are definite goods that come from animal research that can not come from doing tests on humans. This view is by no means one sided. I also feel that there are some things being done to animals that just should not happen, such as the testing of cosmetics.

In other areas of animal rights like dissection in the lassroom I think that as long as the animals died naturally it is fine to use them to further a students education along with human cadavers. Of course, I hope that animal dissection can become a thing of the past with the advent of new technologies. On the topic of hunting I have had a first hand experience. The deer population where I live grew out of control a few years ago and as a last resort the town decided to have a hunt.

It was very controlled safe and had a limit as to how many deer were killed. This sort of animal control is extreme and in my opinion should be avoided at all costs. However, the overpopulation of eer was causing health risks to the town, like a spread of lymes disease, which made hunting a necessity. The rights of animals are watched out for by organizations dating back to the early 1800s. This, I feel is an important step in protecting animals as long as they protest within there legal rights.

In order to sum my opinion up animals do have certain rights but if experiments, research, hunting and dissection provide positive increases in knowledge that furthers the existence of the world it is a necessary thing that must be done. Perhaps the biggest and most debated subject dealing with the rights of nimals is the use of them in research and experimentation. “Very few people would object to the use of animals if human lives were saved as a consequence. ” (Minkoff, 26) However the extremists who do object would do so on a few key points.

Firstly, animals which are used are subjected to in humane treatment. This consists of tests such as the LD50, which entails giving an animal a lethal dose of a chemical or drug until 50% of them die. Also, experimenters are subjecting them to wound experiments, radiation experiments and studies on the effects of chemical warfare. (PETA, 2) Organizations such as PETA are also pposed to cosmetic testing on animals due to experimenters spraying, injecting, and feeding cosmetics to animals which cause labored breathing, blindness and death in some cases.

These organizations argue that cosmetics have already been tested on animals in the past why continue doing the same tests. Due to the protests of The Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing in 1981, Avon and Revlon have stopped using animals in their research. (Comptons, CD) Experiments and research on animals such as the LD50 test and cosmetic tests are, according to animal rights organizations cruel and inhumane towards animals. They believe that animals have rights and they are just as important to society as humans are, therefore if humans are not used for these experiments then animals shouldnt either.

Despite these objections for experimenting on animals there are positive results that come from it. Research on animals is important in understanding diseases and developing ways to prevent them. The polio vaccine, kidney transplants, and heart surgery techniques have all been developed with the help of animal research. Through increased efforts by the scientific community, effective treatments for diabetes, iphtheria, and other diseases have been developed with animal testing. (Bioethics, 148) There are many reasons given for it to be necessary to work with animals in research.

First scientists must be able to test medical treatments for effectiveness and drugs for their toxicity before being tested on humans. Also new surgical techniques before being used on humans must be tested on living things with circulatory and pulmonary systems like ours. No “computer models, cell cultures, nor artificial substances can simulate flesh, muscle blood, bones and organs. “(Ampef, 2) If considered carefully there is no lternative to animal research. It is impossible to explain or predict the course of many diseases without observing the effects of it on the entire living system.

In the classroom, it is argued, dissections must go on in order to further our knowledge. But, what about computer programs like the virtual frog? The answer to this is simply that even with todays technologies these kind of computer programs are not sophisticated enough to reproduce a living organism. In researching the topic of animal rights my eyes have been opened to various different reasons to support and not to support animal rights. After erious consideration of both sides of the argument, my opinion is that animals should be used in research and experiments, excluding cosmetic experiments.

In my opinion this type of animal use is fine as long as it results in positively advancing the human race. Despite this point of view I also believe this research must produce these results in a humane manner. Animals do have rights and should not be used for unnecessary things such as hunting which is purely taking advantage of animals because they can not defend themselves and no good comes from this sport. The only exception to this was stated earlier in which unting was used as a last resort to curb a possible health threat.

Finally my hope for the use of animals in the classroom is that someday there will be enough technological advances for computer programs that will enable them to simulate a real animal. This actually goes for all animal testing, if we could simulate an animal or human, on a computer we would not have to subject anyone to testing. Animals do have the right not to treated inhumanely whether it be in the home, laboratory, classroom or field, yet as long as animals are being used to help benefit the world, animals in my opinion can be used in some respects.

The Ring-Tail Lemur

The ring-tailed lemur is an amazing mammal. They are very interesting creatures that God put on this earth. One of my favorite characteristics about this animal is there big bushy cute tail. The ring-tailed lemurs scientific family is Lemuridae. The ring-tailed lemur gets its name from the neat ringed pattern on the fur on the tail. They have gray or rosy brown backs with lighter gray or brown hind legs and have white stomachs. The ring-tailed lemur’s length is 37-43 inches. Their weight is 5-8lbs. Their offspring is one.

The lifespan of the ring-tailed lemur is 20 years. They have a pointed muzzle, which is typical among the various species of lemurs. Their faces are white and have triangular black noses. Ring-tailed lemurs also have a cute bushy tail. The ring-tailed lemur’s habitat is in the Gallery forest and Euphorbia bush but they also live in other types of forests in Madagascar. Lemurs can only be found living in Madagascar. Ring-tailed lemurs can live in tropical deciduous forests to semi-desert areas. This lemur inhabits three different forests in southern Madagascar.

Ring-tailed lemurs are vegetarians but sometimes eat insects. Only two types of lemurs are strictly vegetarian. Ring-tailed lemurs eat leaves, fruit, sap, plants, bark, and flowers. They like many different species of plants and trees but really love the Kily tree. The ring-tailed lemur’s predators are humans! Humans cut down the trees where lemurs live. We are destroying their habitat. Madagascar was a good home for lemurs until now. Ring-tailed lemurs are being protected now but it is difficult to enforce.

Ring-tailed lemurs shelter in tropical forests to semi-desert. They like to shelter on ground or climbing in trees. Most lemurs only like climbing in trees. The ring-tailed lemur prefers to be on the ground. Scientists classify lemurs along with humans, apes, and monkeys, as being primates. Ring-tailed lemurs really resemble monkeys, except lemurs have a pointy nose. The ring-tailed lemurs scientific name is Lemur catta. Here is the classification system of the ring-tailed lemur: Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Order: Primates

Family: Lemuridae Genus: Lemur Species: Lemur catta Lemurs arrived in Madagascar fifty thousand years ago, when the island was closer to Africa. The first humans arrived 2000 to 1500 years ago. They hunted at least 18 of the larger species of lemurs to extinction! Ring-tailed lemurs are threatened in Madagascar because of habitat loss due to fires, overgrazing by livestock, and tree cutting for charcoal production growth. Ring-tailed lemurs bring in lots of money from tourists for Madagascar. They are a popular sight for tourists because they are interesting.

The effort to save the lemur habitat is difficult. People want to farm where the lemurs live and produce charcoal. Ring-tailed lemurs are wonderful creatures, as you can see. It is odd that they like to be on ground rather than then climbing in the treetops like other lemurs. Lemurs resemble primates especially, monkeys. Ring-tailed lemurs are found protected in reserves such as Isalo National Park, The Andohahela, Andringita, and Tsimanampetsotsa Nature Reserves, The Beza Mahafaly Special Reserve, and The Berenty Private Reserve.

Animal Cruelty leads to Human Violence

Animal cruelty encompasses a range of different behaviors harmful to animals, from neglect to malicious, brutal killings. Studies show that animal cruelty may lead to more serious forms of crime, like heavy drug use, violent outbursts, and most common, cold blooded murder. Many studies in psychology, sociology, and criminology during the last twenty-five years have demonstrated that violent offenders frequently have childhood and adolescent histories of serious and repeated animal cruelty.

A web page that goes by the name Animal Alliance says most cruelty investigated by humane officers, is nintentional neglect, and can be resolved through education. (3) I was slightly shocked when I saw this comment. Anyone who puts an animals life in their hands, has a responsibility to it. You dont just forget to feed him/her, or forget to show them love unless it is intentional, it get so much worse, though.

These people arent just forgetting to feed their pets, or give them attention, theyre kicking and beating them, poisoning and butchering these poor creatures, and what makes me sick to my stomach, is that some of these people do it for fun!! I recently ran across a link to a web page that contained a online petition to put a cats killers to justice with maximum sentence. This is the article I found on this brutal torture of an innocent creature. ***WARNING*** (graphic details) On October 10, 1999, a beautiful female cat came willingly to the four boys who stopped on the side of the road and called to her.

Her trust was rewarded by unthinkable terror and cruelty – being used as a tug-of-war toy until the boys heard something “pop”, having her legs broken, being jumped up and down on like a trampoline. Even when her itiful battered body was mercifully dead, her suffering was not at an end. The boys then placed her ravaged body under the wheel of their car, braking over her, as they drove off to find other amusement. Once the Chesapeake Animal Control conducted their investigation and performed a necropsy, criminal charges were filed against 3 of the 4 boys involved.

If these charges are found to be accurate, these boys are not only in violation of the laws of the State of Virginia, but are also in need of immediate psychiatric intervention. (1)*** Another horrific article I ran across was even worse. It was about a dog who to was also a victim of rancid brutality. Here is that story. ***WARNING*** (graphic details) Jose, Marcus, Richard and Lance are accused of obtaining a video camera, pressing the ‘record’ button, luring Scruffy from his home, and then torturing and killing him in an unspeakably monstrous act of cruelty.

In the videotape that the police and media have in their possession, four men are shown torturing and killing Scruffy in lurid detail. The quality of the tape is very good, and the police have been able to obtain photographs of the men in the tape. In this tape, one of the four men is shown to elevate Scruffy off the ground by the neck, and then begin this horrific abuse by choking him. This 6 pound little dog did not have a fighting chance against these men. Scruffy, still alive, was then placed in a trash bag.

The four men shown in the tape then doused the trash bag with what appeared in the video to be lamp oil, took a cigarette lighter, and set Scruffy on fire. Scruffy, at this point in the video, began to run wildly in pain and agony around the trees while the four men watched and laughed. When the flames finally went out, Scruffy was still alive, but his torture was not over. Next, the men decided to try to decapitate Scruffy with a shovel. After slamming the shovel into Scruffy’s neck and not being able to attain their goal, they realized that Scruffy was more of a fighter than they had expected.

The men then opened Scruffy’s mouth and began to pull his jaws apart, as if trying to rip his face in two. Using the shovel in place of a club, the men then beat Scruffy until his tiny body gave out, and he died. Throughout the videotape the four men are all shown aughing and having a good time as they are carrying out these unspeakable tortures. (1) *** After I read these stories I was disgusted, revolted, down right sickened by the realization that these men needed to be institutionalized or locked down.

Its scares me to think of what they would and are capable of doing to a human being. The FBI uses reports of animal cruelty in analyzing the threat potential of suspected and known violent criminals. Dr. Randall Lockwood, vice president of Training Initiatives for The Humane Society of the United States, states that Researchers, as well as the FBI and other law enforcement agencies nationwide, have linked animal cruelty to domestic violence, child abuse, serial killings, and to the recent rash of killings by school-age children. 2) I found yet another web page listing some reports from police case files. I was astonished! These are a few excerpts from that page.

“Russell Weston Jr. , tortured and killed 12 cats, by burning, cutting their tails, paws, ears off, put toxic chemicals in their eyes, blinding them, forcing them to eat poison, hanging hem from trees; the noose loose enough to create a slow and painful death, as the cat/kitten struggles to free itself as the noose gets tighter with each attempt.

Later killed 2 officers at our Nation’s Capitol. ” “Jeffery Dahmer loved to dissect animals (he learned this in school). Later he dissected boys, and kept their body parts in the refrigerator. Murdered 17 men. ” “On May 21, 1998 in Springfield, Oregon; 15-year-old Kip Kinkel set a live cat on fire and dragged the innocent creature through the main street of town. He walked into his high school cafeteria and opened fire on his classmates. Two classmates were killed and 22 others injured, four critically.

Later that day, police found his parents shot to death in their home. ” “Prior to committing multiple murders, Luke Woodham, age 16, wrote in his personal journal that he and an accomplice beat, burned and tortured his dog, Sparkle, to death. Woodham said it was “true beauty. ” He poured liquid fuel down his dog’s throat and set fire to her neck, both inside and outside. On 10/1/1977, Woodham stabbed his mother to death and then went to his high school where he shot and killed two classmates — two irls aged 16 and 17, and injured seven others.

In June 1998, Woodham was found guilty of three murders and seven counts of aggravated assault. He was sentenced to three life sentences and an additional 20 years for each assault. ” “The Kobe Killer, an as yet unnamed 15-year-old boy in Japan, beheaded a cat and strangled several pigeons. Decapitated 11-year-old Jun Hase, and battered to death a 10-year-old girl with a hammer, and assaulted three other children in separate attacks. ” “At 9 years old, Eric Smith strangled a neighbor’s cat. At 13 years old, he bludgeoned our-year-old Derrick Robie to death.

Smith lured the little boy into the woods, choked him, sodomized him with a stick, then beat him to death with a rock. ” “Arthur Shawcross repeatedly threw a kitten into a lake until the kitten drowned from exhaustion. Killed a young girl. Then, after serving 15-1/2 years in prison, he killed 11 more women. ” (4) *** Dr. Randall Lockwood stated, Violence directed at animals by young people is a sign that something is terribly wrong, and often acts as a warning of future violence, even killings directed against humans. 2) In the in the past 18 months, we have seen seven school shootings.

In each one, it was learned that the perpetrators had abuse, tortured, and killed animals before moving on to their human victims and our nation is wondering what happened. One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a child is to kill or torture an animal and get away with it. Our child must be taught young that it wrong to poke at puppys eyes. We cant afford to ignore what we think of as childish exploration. Our children learn the most important aspects of life young and if theyre not aware of what is ight and wrong, it could possibly lead to more dangerous attempts.

As a society, we can not tolerate cruelty towards animals. People inclined to inflict pain and torture upon animals have a predisposition to violence against both animals and humans. A 1997 study by the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) reports that youngsters convicted of animal abuse are five times more likely to commit violence against other humans than are their peers, four times more likely to be involved in acts against property, and three times more likely to be drug offenders.

Animal Liberation Essay

Why is it that we as a society condemn the actions of a man against a man but very rarely a man against an animal? I think this question must be understood if we are ever to change the rights animals have. As of yet I don’t believe animals have any actual rights. Rather humans have rights that involve animals. If we are to truly allow animals to have rights the same or similar to humans then we must first define what it is that makes us feel as if they are entitled to rights. Peter Singer addresses the ordeal of animal rights better than I have ever seen anyone address it.

His analysis laid out in A Utilitarian Defense of Animal Liberation is remarkably stated. He pushes the viewer to see animals as equals to us. But in order for him to do this he must first redefine equality. I think that the over use of the word equality has been an enormous set back in the movement for animal rights. Obviously a dog is not physically equal to a human and it would be outlandish to state that a dog has equal mental ability to that of the average human. However, there are humans that have fewer mental capabilities than that of the average dog.

We would not subject this human to product testing and research but we feel it is all right to place animals in this position. A general defense to this is that the human life matters more than that of an animal, but what allows us to make that judgment. Singer addresses this defense by comparing the inequality placed on species to that of the inequality placed on races and sexes, hence his term “speciesism”. For the majority of my life, since I remember having a specific viewpoint one way or another, I have considered my-self a person in favor of animal rights.

It wasn’t until I read A Utilitarian Defense of Animal Liberation that I realized my idea of animal rights was greatly understated. It also brought back a memory that I had long since forgotten. I was raised by my father to respect life, even if it was the life of an insect or rodent. My father insisted on having “humane” mouse traps and instead of squashing a bug he would take it out side and let it go. When I was about eight my father caught me shooting a robin with my pellet gun and grounded me. I threw a fit and screamed, “What’s the big deal? Its only a stupid bird! ” and ran inside.

That evening my dad called me into his room and sat me down for a talk. He tried to explain to me that everything had a right to live and we had no business taking that right away with out a reason. I didn’t quite under stand what he meant by that and still insisted that it was only a bird. Nevertheless, I finally agreed to stop shooting them. This was only to get out of the room and I took no stock in what I had agreed to do. Later that week I was at it again, shooting at birds while my father was at work. As I took aim at a large robin my father’s words lingered in the back of my head.

I pushed them aside in my mind but the hesitation was just enough for my aim to be affected. The pellet hit the robin and sent it to the ground but this time it didn’t kill it immediately. It lay on the ground squawking and flapping its wings. I stood there and watched the robin die and at that moment my father’s words took effect and as I witnessed the life slowly leave this creature I felt tears welling up inside of me. It wasn’t until then that I fully realized the effect my actions had. After that I only raised my gun at another animal if I intended to bring it home and harvest the meat.

Reading the article by Peter Singer, I realize that while I have considered myself to be strongly for animal rights and against animal testing and cruelty to animals, I have really only looked at the issues from my point of view. I’m strongly against those things that don’t directly affect me. I eat meat and hunt and have never really had a problem with it. I’m appalled at the thought of testing our products on animals but have no problem going out and shooting a deer. This brings up an argument that can at first be seen to agree with animal rights but at closer inspection violates the idea behind it.

Hunting has always been a part of human existence, especially here in Montana. I have always thought I was being a good animal rights supporter by hunting. This feeling came from the knowledge of what goes on in places that raise animals in order to mass-produce hamburger and store sold meats. I have always felt I was being fair to the animal by giving it a life outside of captivity and cruel conditions. Yet in order for there to be total animal rights we would have to abolish hunting. Each and every animal has the right to live and we have no right to decide when that life is to end.

Doing so only implies that they are inferior to us. But aren’t there a great many people that are inferior to others. Does that mean we have the right to hunt them for pleasure, sport and food? Almost all of society would say definitely not! But what is it that makes the animal life so much less valuable than that of a human. One of the largest and most frequently used arguments against animal rights is the rationality argument. It simply states that a human being is of greater value than an animal because it has the ability to perform rational thought.

This argument fails to recognize the fact that there are many humans that lack the ability for rational thought while there are numerous animals that have shown signs of this very ability. If we allow ourselves to use these animals in tests and research then what is to stop us from using mental retards, infants, and people in vegetative states in these same procedures? I am not against hunting even though it is taking the life of another species. I feel that if you eat the meat then it is justified. I believe the only reason I don’t eat and hunt humans is that it is illegal.

Of course if it were legal there would be utter chaos and we would return to the survival of the fittest. Perhaps that is what we need, a return to the times when you took only when you needed and the life you took was in order to sustain your own. Or perhaps we need to turn to vegetarianism. After all it is much healthier and humane. In the long run I think the argument for animal rights can be broken down into two sentences. Every creature has the right to life. We do not have the right to take that from them, no more than we have the right to kill a mentally retarded human being.

The American Crocodile (Crocodylus acutus)

Crocodylus acutus, or more commonly referred to as the American crocodile, Kis the second most widely distributed of the New World crocodiles, ranging from the southern tip of Florida, both the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts of Southern Mexico, as well as the Caribbean islands of Cuba, Jamaica, and Hispaniola (1 Species). These areas provide the perfect climate for these endangered species that have roamed the earth for over 200 million years. Florida is known for its large population of American alligators, which are often confused for the rare American crocodile.

However, there are vast differences between the two species. Hunted for their hides and the changing of their habitat to beach front property is slowly pushing the American crocodile out of Florida, the only place it is found in the United States. For 190 million years before the first humans evolved, huge populations of crocodilians, in more or less their present form, inhabited the waters and shorelines of rivers, lakes, swamps, and estuaries of tropical and subtropical lands.

Today they represent the last true survivors of the huge reptiles that once dominated the seas and landmasses of Earth for over 200 million years (6 Levy). However, KIt is inappropriate to treat crocodilians as living fossils whose inferiority forced them into a marginal ecological role as amphibious predators in a world now dominated by mammals. In fact, they are highly specialized for their particular mode of life and have undergone considerable changes during their long evolutionary historyK (14 Ross). Among living vertebrates, crocodilians are most closely related to birds rather than to lizards (14).

Even though these two groups are now adapted to different modes of life, they both have an elongate outer ear canal, a muscular gizzard, and complete separation of the ventricles of the heart. Crocodilians are the most advanced of all reptiles. They are elongated, armored, and lizard-like, with a muscular, laterally shaped tail used in swimming. The snout is also elongated, with the nostrils set to the end to allow breathing while most of the body remains submerged under water (42). The success of the Crocodile is evidenced by the relatively few changes that have occurred since crocodilians first appeared about 200 million years ago (42).

The Crocodile belongs to the family Crocodylinae, which consists of those organisms sharing common crocodilian traits. This Family is further divided into three subfamilies: Alligatorinae (alligators), Gavialinae (gharial), and Crocodylinae (crocodiles). Very often the American alligator (Alligatorinae mississippiensis) is confused for an American crocodile, even though these two species are of the same family they are different in many ways. The alligator has a much broader snout and the crocodile a much narrower snout- Knarrower snouts usually indicating fish eating-species (42).

Another characteristic seen in the American crocodile and not the alligator is the front two teeth that penetrate the upper jaw from below as they grow (2 List). These teeth are one of the major differences between crocodiles and alligators. A not so recognizable difference between the American crocodile and alligator is the crocodiles ability to regulate saltwater balance in their body. Crocodiles maintain salt concentrations in their body fluid at the typical level of other vertebrates, which is about one-third that of seawater (52).

The osmoregulatory problems posed by life in fresh or saline waters are related to the amounts of water and salts exchanged across various body surfaces. Loss of salts and water occurs in feces and urine, through respiration, excretion from salt glands in the tongue, and through the skin. The ability of the American crocodile to tolerate salt water is related to their low rate of water loss, low rate of sodium uptake, the ability to excrete excess sodium, and their ability to osmoregulate regularly behaviorally by not drinking saline water or by seeking fresh water after feeding in saline areas (54).

The American crocodiles will not drink seawater even when they are dehydrated and the American alligator will. However, the alligator does not have the ability to excrete excess sodium] (55). While the American Crocodile is able to regulate its salinity it is not able to maintain a constant body temperature. Crocodiles, like all reptiles, are cold blooded or pokilothermic. Crocodiles utilize a complex series of physiological and behavioral mechanisms to maintain an even body temperature.

When their body temperature drops, they use solar radiation to heat their bodies as they emerge from the water to bask in shallow waters or on the shoreline. As their temperature rises they hold their mouths agape to allow some evaporative cooling. The membranes of the mouth cavity play a major role in regulating temperature (24 Levy). Sometimes crocodiles will partially bask in the sun with their tail or head in the water, this allows them to optimally adjust their temperatures. Body temperature can also be adjusted by shunting blood towards or away from their surface.

As crocodiles cool the superficial blood vessels constrict, thereby limiting the amount of heat loss at the animals surface and maintaining a steady core temperature (25). [Another temperature-regulating strategy is mud bathing, which provides another layer of insulation against extremes in environmental temperatures] (51 Ross). The American crocodile is found in subtropical to tropical area, were it is optimal for body temperature regulation. It is considered an estuarine species that is capable of migrating through salt water.

It is quite the sea going species ranging from Equador along the Pacific Coast to western Mexico, and from eastern Mexico to Guatemala, the coastal areas of Colombia and Venezuela, and north through the Caribbean to the southernmost tip of Florida (40 Guggisberg). This species is the common resident of coastal habitats, large rivers, and lakes within its range (65 Ross). Populations are known from freshwater areas located well inland, including a number of reservoirs (1 Species). In Florida, C. acutus can be found in mangrove swamps and saltwater marshes with sandy, undisturbed high spots (10B Sun-sentinel).

South Florida is the northern end of [C. acutuss] range. Historically, crocodiles have lived in Florida from Cape Sable to Lake Worth in Palm Beach County, and fewer numbers, up to Sanibel on the west coast. The largest population in Florida has always lived in the extreme southern end of the peninsula. Because of destruction of habitat, the crocodiles range is now limited to the undeveloped areas from Cape Sable to North Key Largo and Turkey Point (6H Weinlaub).

The American crocodile was placed on the endangered species list in 1975. [C. utus} produces a commercially valuable hide and the principal reason for past declines in population size can be attributed to the extensive commercial overexploitation that occurred from the 1930s into the 1960s (1 Species). In most populations C. acutus is extensively hunted with only one or two populations being adequately protected in national parks in Costa Rica, Venezuela, and the United States (226 Ross). Once crocodilian skin was a source of high-quality, pliable, decorative leather that takes on a bright sheen when processed, trafficking in skins became big business with huge returns.

Crocodilian skins are processed into a large variety of very expensive leather products. In the early 1900s US tanneries alone were processing between 250,000 and 500,000 skins per year. As supplies dwindled (crocodiles), prices rose and so did the profitability of hunting. Even after protective laws were enacted, the profit incentive encouraged large-scale poaching and smuggling of illegal skins by middlemen servicing the tanneries and leather markets. By the middle of the 1960s crocodile hunting had left many species critically threatened, including the American crocodile near to extinction.

Today the world market for crocodilian skins is about 2 million hides per year. Some of these come from licensed, controlled hunting and some are harvested from the captive populations on farms and ranches. These skins are considered to be illegal, but at least a million of the hides taken annually are obtained from poachers. (102 Levy). Also, Habitat destruction is responsible for reduction, and in inhabited area motor vehicles are a major killer of crocodiles. [The American crocodile almost disappeared from its only habitat in the United States, by the 1970s.

But now, A well-protected population of crocodiles exists at the southernmost tip of Florida. The transformed natural landscape that limited their range now supports about 500 animals. Habitats have been protected by both state and federal agencies as well as by the nuclear power industry. The major nuclear power plant of South Florida at Turkey Point has found increasing numbers of the endangered crocodiles in residence and even successfully breeding in the 168 mile network of mangrove-lined cooling canals] (120 Levy).

At first environmentalists challenged the nuclear power plant at Turkey Point, because the heated water, that is a byproduct of the plant, seemed sure to kill seagrasses in Biscayne Bay. The Power companys solution: an extensive network of cooling canals where the water would be cooled before it was returned to Biscayne Bay. As the canals were dug, the extra sand was piled alongside, fashioning a perfect place for a crocodile to nest (1A McClure).

The Florida Power and Light Company has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in crocodile research efforts and has abandoned plans for expansion of the power plant, leaving the crocodile habitat safe for the foreseeable future] (120 Levy). Once chased by development into a 20-square mile patch of southern Dade County and the northern Florida Keys, crocodiles now are reproducing enough that they are spreading out again. The generally secretive reptiles are showing up along much of South Floridas coast, from Sanibel Island to the Bonnet House in Ft. Lauderdale (1A McClure).

It is the explosion of suitable nesting sites that is driving the crocodiles recovery, which saw an estimated 20 nests in 1974 climb to at least 42 in 1995] (1A). Nesting is the most reliable way to tell if crocodiles are re-colonizing an area, so a clutch of eggs discovered on Sanibel Island [in 1995] was particularly encouraging for researchers, even though none of the eggs were hatched (1A). In [1993] there was a record year at Turkey Point, with 12 nests and 155 hatchlings found. And, in [1994] nine nests and 153 hatchlings were recorded a month into hatching time (1E Miller).

The crocodiles lay their eggs on land in exposed sites, usually within 30 feet of the waterK Mound nests are composed of sand and earth combined with a great deal of plant material (grasses, water reeds, and leaves), the decay of which releases heat to help insulate the eggs (72 Levy). The hole is excavated with the hind feet, and the excavated soil is subfrequently used to cover the eggs. Mostly as a mound-nesting species the crocodile will first gather a collection of leaves, grasses, reeds and other plant litter at the selected nesting site and then create a mound using this plant material combined with earth or sand.

Then the mother compacts all the material into a firm, solid mound. Finally, she excavates a cavity up to two feet deep, lays her eggs and covers them up (73). In crocodilians, the temperature experienced by the embryo in its egg is a major determination of hatchling sex, this is referred to as temperature-dependent sex determination or TSD. TSD has been proven in five species of crocodiles and is probably true for all species, because crocodilians lack sex chromosomes. Exclusively females are produced at low incubation temperatures, males are produced at intermediate temperatures, and high temperatures produce mostly or only females.

Where the female builds her nest and when she lays her eggs both have major effects on the sex ratio for her offspring. Thermal cues probably play a major role in nest-site selection and construction. It is not surprising that, in many crocodilian nests, all of the siblings are of the same sex. The crucial period of thermal sensitivity begins early in development and extends throughout the first half of incubation (120 Ross). Without knowing it FPL created ideal nesting sites for crocodiles (1E Miller).

Along with the cooling canals of Turkey Point, Everglades National Park, and Key Largo are the key breeding areas for C. acutus. As American crocodiles produce commercially valuable hide, sustainable utilization programs based on ranching and farming are feasible, However, the development of management programs based on sustainable utilization must be approached on a country-by-country basis and be directly linked to the health of wild populations. A majority of countries [8 of the 17] that the crocodile inhibits have management programs based on complete protection, but only a few have enforced legislation.

El Salvador and Haiti have no management programs whatsoever. In five countries, farming of the American crocodile has begun (3 Species). In the early 1960s, the wild crocodilian resource necessary for the skin trade had dwindled and the first conservation laws were enacted, resulting in a simultaneous rise in prices and in the demand for skins. It was at this time that farsighted conservationists and skin producers started to investigate the feasibility of farming and ranching crocodilians on a sustained, commercial basis.

Conservation and educational farms aim at breeding endangered species, such as the American crocodile, in captivity for possible release back into protected areas in the wild. Commercial development and international trade in endangered species such as crocodiles must satisfy the criteria of the convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES). Commercial farms must be able to demonstrate, for a defined geographic area, that the impact of harvesting is not detrimental to the survival of the species (203 Ross).

Alternatives to Animal Experimentation

The search for alternative methods to animal testing is underway in many laboratories across the entire world. While success has been made, the research is far from over. These alternatives have been developed using the concept of the three Rs. In 1959, William Russell and Rex Burch defined the principle of the three Rs in the book Principles of Humane Experimental Technique. The three Rs are reduction, refinement, and finally replacement (5). The first concept, reduction alternatives, covers any strategy that will result in fewer animals being used to obtain the same amount of information.

Also, reduction refers to maximizing the information obtained per animal so as to limit or avoid the use of more animals. There are several approaches that can help to reduce the use of animals. Some laboratories alert all of the researchers when animals are going to be killed in an experiment. For example, one researcher may be doing a study on livers, and so other researchers may be able to use the kidneys, heart, or brain tissue for other experiments.

In some cases it might also be possible to use in vitro methods, which are studies done with cells or tissues cultured in a petri dish, in place of in vivo methods, which are studies done in the living animal (3). The second principle, refinement, represents the modification of any procedure from the time the laboratory animal is born until its death, to minimize the pain and distress experienced by the animal. Paying attention to issues of animal welfare is not only important in light of ethics, but also in the matter of good science.

The experience of pain and other stress is likely to have an effect on the variability of experimental results. In fact, it is in the best interest of the researcher to ensure that conditions in animal facilities are the best possible. It does not require excessive funding to enrich the environment in which the animals live in. For example, toilet paper rolls, egg cartons, and PVC tubing can provide rodents with places to hide. Bales of straw and rubber tires can be used to create an area for rabbits to interact with other members of their species.

Dogs can be given numerous toys to play with, and be provided with a raised platform so they are not forced to stand in their own waste. It is also important for the staff of the facility to be well trained in handling the animals that are being used, and that they have the correct attitude when working with the animals. Anesthesia should be used whenever possible, and at the end of the experiment, the most humane method of euthanasia should be chosen. The final concept of the three Rs is replacement.

Any experimental system that does not use whole, living animals is considered to be a replacement alternative. Some of these techniques still involve the humane killing of an animal for the purpose of obtaining cells, tissues, or organs for in vitro studies. Other techniques involve no use of any biological material from a fully developed vertebrate, non-human animal. In some cases, replacement methods can be used for the total replacement of animals in a study, in others they will complement animal experiments and reduce the total number of animals used in the whole project.

Replacement alternatives can be divided into six categories: information; computer-based systems; physico-chemical techniques; the use of lower organisms and embryo stages; human studies; and cell, tissue, and organ cultures (5). Access to information can prevent the unnecessary duplication of animal work that has already been done. Also, the in vivo data that has already been found to be reliable can be used to validate alternative methods without having to do any new animal studies.

Developments in computer modeling and expert systems that can predict biological activity and toxicity have already revolutionized the process of drug development by eliminating the need to use animals for pre-screening of potential drug candidates. For example, TOPKAT is a mathematical computer model based on physical and chemical structures and properties of a substance (10). This replacement procedure is used to determine the oral toxicity and possible skin and eye irritancy of a substance.

The TOPKAT test is currently 75 to 100% accurate, and is regularly used by the Food and Drug Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the United States Army. Computer simulations and multi-media presentations are often used to replace the use of animals for education purposes. Even though these simulations are available, it is very difficult, and in many cases still not possible, to simulate a hands-on experimental situation. In order to improve upon these programs, a huge amount of data from mostly in vivo studies has to be collected and applied to the programs.

Physicochemical data, pH for example, are used in combination with structure-activity relationships to predict the biological effects of chemicals. One product, the Irritection Ocular Assay System, formerly known as Eytex or Skintex, uses a solution that is made up of proteins, glycoproteins, lipids, and low molecular weight components that self-associate to form a complex molecular matrix. The test works by mimicking the reaction of the cornea and human skin when exposed to a foreign substance. If a chemical has a potential to irritate the eye, then it will cause the solution to coagulate.

At the present time, the test can determine the toxicity of over 5000 different materials (8). Many cosmetic companies, such as Avon, use this system to screen potential irritants without testing them on animals. Sometimes it is possible to conduct studies in lower organisms, such as invertebrates, plants and microorganisms, or in vertebrates at early stages of development. Some examples of this type of alternative are the Ames test and the LAL test. The Ames test uses salmonella bacteria to detect any carcinogenicity (the ability to cause or promote cancer) (8).

This test has been validated and accepted for screening purposes in toxicology. The LAL test for endotoxins has also been validated for certain purposes. This test detects the presence of fever-inducing endotoxins in intravenous products. This is made possible from blood samples gathered in the wild from horseshoe crabs. The researcher extracts amoebocyte lysate from the samples and mixes it with the endotoxin to see if a reaction occurs (8). Also, hydra can be used to screen for teratogenicity, which is the production of malformations in the embryo.

Yeast cells and tobacco plant pollen tubes have also been suggested for toxicity testing. Advances in genetic engineering are opening up even more possibilities to replace the use of higher animals. Genetically engineered roundworms, because they carry human disease genes, have already been used to identify new drugs. Many studies on the development and growth can be carried on animal embryos in vitro rather than in the pregnant mother. Rodents are usually used in these procedures. Fertilized chicken eggs are also used in a test called the HETCAM, which predicts eye irritancy.

The researcher can observe the effects a chemical has on the chorioallantoic membrane of the egg (5). If sufficient consideration is given to ethical and safety issues, studies on humans can replace the use of animals in some cases. Clinical studies in humans have always been required to register drugs, and human volunteers are being used more and more for the skin testing of cosmetics. Non-invasive methods can be used in healthy subjects to investigate disease processes. Some of these methods are nuclear magnetic resonance, electron spin resonance, and positron emission tomography.

The great advantage to human studies is that they deal with human beings in their normal environments. Finally, the use of cell, tissue, and organ cultures are used usually only as relative replacements, because they require freshly obtained animal cells and tissue. However, the animals are used more economically in this way, because one animal can provide tissue for a number of cultures. Human tissue can sometimes be used, but it is difficult to obtain, store, and distribute. Some human tissue is available after surgeries. Human placenta has been suggested as a source of tissue for various types of research.

Because it contains mast cells that share certain structures with nerve cells, it can be used in some neurological studies. One drawback is that when human tissue is used, there is a greater risk that it will contain dangerous viruses, and so greater precautions must be taken. One idea is to establish tissue banks, much like blood banks, where the tissue can be screened and then be used to supply researchers. Because in vitro procedures isolate the system under study from the rest of the organism, they are ideal when trying to avoid the effects of influences such as hormones.

This can also be a disadvantage because these external factors may have a crucial effect on the question being studied. There are several different kinds of in vitro systems, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. The first method is to use subcellular fractions of one cell component. An example of this type of in vitro would be to study the role of liver microsomes and their importance to drug metabolism. One drawback to this type is the fact that this system will not provide information about the influence of factors in the cell, let alone in the organ or the entire organism (5).

Primary cell cultures are produced from fresh tissue that has been disrupted to obtain individual cells. These cultures are fairly easy to set up, and the advantage is that they contain normal cells with all the characteristics that determine their specialized functions in the tissue they came from. The disadvantage, however, is that they can only be maintained for a few days, or sometimes weeks, and they tend to lose ability to function with time. This means that fresh tissue is constantly required, and the cultures cannot be used for long-term studies.

Another drawback is the fact that these cultures will not permit cell/cell interactions. Another in vitro system is cell line cultures. These consist of cells that can grow indefinitely. They are often taken from human or animal tumors and some have been kept for decades. They have undergone a process called transformation that makes them able to ignore the control mechanisms that limit the number of times normal cells can divide before dying. Cell line cultures can be kept frozen in liquid nitrogen. They are used a lot because they are so easy to maintain and do not require fresh tissue.

The disadvantage of this system is that it has not been possible to produce cell lines of every tissue. A further drawback is that the cells are abnormal in many ways. In some cases, the cells dont even resemble the normal cells from the tissue they came from. One advancement that has been made is the development of embryonic stem cell lines. These cells remain unaffected until the researcher manipulates them. This type of cell line culture could be used to test teratogenicity, which is the ability of a chemical to cause malformations in the fetus of an animal or human.

Researchers are also interested in using embryonic stem cell lines for gene knock out studies to identify the roles of specific genes. Cell lines can be genetically engineered in many ways. For example, human genes can be inserted into an animal cell line to give it the same enzyme capabilities as human tissues (5). Tissue culture is a system that is unique in that cell/cell interactions are still possible through fragments or slices of tissue that maintains the tissues original architecture.

For example, very thin slices of liver and kidney can be used to study possible effects of drugs on these organs. This type can also be very economical because human tissue obtained after surgery can be used in tissue culture. However, these cultures have a limited lifespan and a high level of technical skill is needed to set up and maintain them. The latest breakthrough has come with the development of three-dimensional tissue equivalents, which essentially mimic the real tissue. These equivalents are made by culturing tissues on an artificial support matrix.

A lot of human skin equivalents have been developed and work is in progress on tissue equivalents for other organs. One alternative, Testskin, is actual human skin grown in a sterile plastic bag. This test is used to measure irritancy, and is being used by Avon, Amway, and Estee Lauder. Epipack, which also uses cloned human tissue, is designed to work much like the Testskin. Finally, the Neutral Red Bioassay test, which is a test performed on cultured human cells, is used to compute the absorption of water-soluble dyes.

This can help determine the relative toxicity of the dye (9). Organ cultures have an advantage in that they allow all of the interactions that take place in the organ. These in vitro procedures are used in a lot of pharmacology studies. The disadvantage, once again, is that they are hard to maintain and are short-lived. Organ cultures also involve killing an animal for an organ, and only one organ can be taken from each of the animals, with the exception of the kidneys. One in vitro procedure, Corrositex, was developed as an alternative to the rabbit skin test.

The test assesses chemical corrosivity using a protein membrane designed to function like the skin. When exposed to a potentially corrosive substance, the biomembrane becomes colored. Results to a Corrositex test are available in as little as three minutes and no longer than four hours. The in vivo rabbit skin method takes two to four weeks to complete (6). There are many more alternative procedures that are being developed and improved up on every day, and so the hope for replacement of animals in the laboratory continues to grow stronger.

Establishments such as the John Hopkins Center for the Alternatives to Animal Testing, the International Foundation for Ethical Research, the Cosmetic, Toiletry, and Fragrance Association, and the Soap and Detergent Association have all started their own programs to validate alternatives. Although some critics are doubtful that replacement methods will ever be able to take the place of hands-on animal experimentation, the struggle continues for avid animal rights supporters to find alternative testing procedures.

The question of whether animals have the right to be protected from such research experiments is a hard one to answer, and has been disputed for many years. The question may be easier to answer when it is asked about testing for such things as cosmetics, but when it comes to cancer studies and the like, the lines arent quite as clear cut. It is up each individual to decide whether the life of an animal is just as important, or more important, than research that benefits mankind. In his autobiography, The Story Of My Experiments, Mohandas K. Gandhi states his opinion on animal experimentation:

To my mind the life of the lamb is no less precious than that of a human being. I should be unwilling to take the life of the lamb for the sake of the human body. I hold that, the more helpless the creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man. (9) Although companies are continuously searching for alternatives to animal research, the number of animals used in experiments actually continues to increase. The old test, the in vivo method, must be done along with the new test, the in vitro method, to ensure that the new test will have results that are consistent with the old test.

It is believed that even if the number is increasing at this time, the number of animals that will ultimately be saved after in vitro methods are improved will greatly outweigh the number of those used during the research to perfect such methods. Until alternative methods can be proven to be just as, if not more, effective than in vivo methods, the question of the rights of animals and experimental research will continue to be debated and questioned. Advancements are being made every day, and, hopefully, one day animals will not have to be used in experiments.

The African Elephant

The common name is the African Elephant, the scientific name is Loxodonta Africana, the phylum is Vertebrata, the class is Mammalia, the order is Proboscidea, and the family is Elephantidae. The Closest Relatives to the African Elephant are: the Asian Elephant, mammoths, primitive proboscidean (mastodons), sea cows, and hyraxes. Scientists believe that the African Elephant evolved from one of its closest relatives, the Sea Cow. The geographical location and range of the African elephant covers all of central and southern Africa. In Ethiopia there are isolated populations that exist round Lake Chad in Mali and Mauritania.

Also in Kenya, Rhodesia, Tanzania, Zambia, Uganda, Zaire, and in National parks located in South Africa, as well as several other countries. African Elephants, originally, were found in all of the Sub-Saharan African habitats except desert steppes. Elephants still occupy diverse habitats such as: temperate grassland, tropical savanna and grass lands, temperate forest and rainforest, tropical rainforest, tropical scrub forest, and tropical deciduous forest despite their drastic decline in numbers. However, their migratory patterns and abitat use have changed, due to the fact that they are restricted to protected areas.

The elephant can exist in many types of environments but it prefers places that have many trees and bushes, which the elephant needs both for food and shade. They also like warm areas that have plenty of rainfall. This ensures plenty of food, shade, and water. The elephant prefers a habitat of mixed woodland and grassland which gives them an opportunity to eat a variety of vegetation. African Elephants are considered herbivores, they are both browsers and razers; they will eat rough sticks, stems and leaves of plants as well as grasses, sedges, and fruit.

Their favorites are mangoes, berries and coconuts. An elephant eats up to 500 pounds of vegetation every day and drinks up to 50 gallons of water daily. Elephants must consume these giant quantities of food, due to their poor digestive system. The small intestine is 82 feet long, the large intestine 21 feet long, and the rectum adds a further 13 feet. The problem with the digestive tract lies in their gut; elephants have too few symbiotic bacteria. These are the organisms which help break own the cellulose of plant cell walls by producing enzymes called cellulases.

The most remarkable feature of the elephants digestive system is its 5 feet long appendix, bigger than the stomach. Proteins, starches, and sugars are digested in the appendix. The elephant will excrete almost 200 pounds a day of semi-digested food. Elephants live together in strong family units which might have as few as two or as many as twenty members. When the group gets too big, it splits up; but the groups stay in close contact. Elephant life revolves around this unit which is usually headed y the oldest female. The family offers protection, aid, comfort, and teaching to all of its members.

Within the units are cows, calves, and bulls. The male bulls are very solitary and most of the time travel only with other males, except during mating season when the bulls travel with the pack looking for a mate. The males remain with the family unit until they are about fourteen and then leave the family to join the other males. The African elephant usually gives birth to one calf every four years. The gestation period is approximately twenty to twenty two years. The newborn calf, hich weighs 200-300 pounds and stands about three feet high, is cared for by all of the females in the pack, not just by the mother.

The calf may nurse as long as eight years, or until its tusks are too long for the mother. It takes about 14 to 15 years for an elephant to fully mature. They grow to about 10-13 feet tall and 7. 5 meters in length and weigh as much as 7 tons. The family will remain together throughout their lives. The elephants body has many special features which it has adapted throughout the centuries to help it survive in its environment. The most important part of the lephants body is its trunk. An elephant uses its trunk for many things.

With it, the elephant can pick up objects that weigh as much as 600 lbs. This powerful trunk is also used to beat off attacking animals and sometimes mother elephants use their trunks to swat their babies. The trunk, which is very flexible, can curl over the elephants head so that the elephant can give itself showers and dust baths. The trunk also curls towards the elephants mouth so it can eat and drink. At the end of the trunk the elephant has finger-like projections similar to the human thumb and forefinger. With this the elephant can pick up small objects.

Baby elephants often suck their trunks just like human babies suck their thumbs. The nostrils at the tip of the trunk are highly sensitive, an elephant can detect a water source from as far as 12 miles away, and detect the reproductive status of another elephant from some distance. The elephant also has tusks which can dig up roots and help the elephant dig at dried up river beds for water. They also help the elephant fight off attackers. The tusks are made of ivory and this is why the elephants are being poached. Poachers can earn $5,000 for just 40 pounds of ivory tusks.

Another unusual part of the elephants body is its huge ears which can be four feet wide in the male African elephant. With their huge ears the elephant can swat bugs, look fierce, and keep itself cool. Although the ears are so big the elephant has poor hearing and rely on their sense of smell. Since the elephant cannot sweat to release heat, they must have another means of releasing their body heat. The elephant will repeatedly beat its ears along the side of its head. When they do this the blood in ts ears cools and the cool blood is then circulated to the rest of the body.

The wrinkles in their skin help to increase the surface area of the elephant, which helps in cooling, and mud and water are also trapped under the wrinkles, further helping the elephant to keep cool. The elephant has four molars on each side of its mouth. The molars of adult elephants are the size of bricks. There They get six new sets of molars in a lifetime. They get their last set when they are about 45 years old, and after those fall out the elephant will starve to death. Elephants are highly intelligent animals. They have very large and well-developed brains and excellent memories.

Elephants have strange habits and ways of communication. One means of communication is trumpeting. They have different tones of trumpeting which indicate different moods, such as playfulness and excitement. Trumpeting is also used to frighten off attackers. Their most important way to communicate is what is called stomach rumbles although the sound actually comes from its throat. Scientists have found fifteen types of rumbles indicating different things. One rumble means for the herd to move on, loud rumbles are used to reet family members and other rumbles help them locate each other.

Scientists even think that elephants communicate long-distance with these rumbles, which are infrasound, low frequency waves which travel many miles. Elephants can hear and produce low notes in the region of 14-16 Hz, well below the range of the human ear. Elephants often communicate a lot when they are grieving over the death of a family member. Because the family is so important, young elephants are very upset when others die. Elephants have been known to bury their dead with twigs and leaves and stay by the graves for many hours.

In 1930 there were five to ten million elephants in Africa but because of poaching and some natural disasters (fires, droughts) their numbers were reduced to about 1. 3 million by 1976 and to about 600,000 now. The African elephant was really threatened by hunters and poachers during the years 1978-1989 and was declared an endangered species in 1989. CITES currently lists the African elephant on appendix I, meaning all trade regarding this animal is prohibited. However, since 1989 it has been making a strong comeback because of the efforts of many people and countries to protect them.

In some African countries they are now so over-populated in the lands left available to them that scientists are trying to invent a form of birth-control for elephants. Hunting of the elephant is banned but poaching for ivory is still widespread. In 1989 a stack of 3,000 confiscated tusks are worth about $3 million dollars was burned by Kenyas president. Kenya is one of the many countries taking steps to save the elephants. In Tsavo East National Park in Kenya a group called the Anti-poaching Rangers patrol the park. Their job is to follow the shoot-to-kill order issues by the president.

Dinosaurs and Birds

Are birds really dinosaurs or are they simply related? That is a question that has gained new life in recent years due to the overwhelming facts the are pouring in from newly found fossils and studies from fossils that have been found in the past. Two groups have formed in the study of this question: those who believe birds are a direct result of dinosaurs and those who feel dinosaurs and birds must have had a common ancestor. Determining which view is correct is a matter of opinion based on fact.

The main problem involves the use of cladistics or phylogenetic systematics to group organisms according to characteristics they share. When one looks at dinosaur fossils, he or she may feel that certain characteristics are used for something entirely different than someone else who has looked at the same fossil. One cannot talk about dinosaur and bird lineage without mentioning Archaeopteryx. Most paleontologists agree that Archaeopteryx was the first bird. Archaeopteryx thus represents what paleontologists would call a transitional form between two major groups of animals, the reptiles (dinosaurs) and birds.

The main difference between the theropods and Archaeopteryx were the long arms of the Archaeopteryx, adapted as wings, the feathers, and the presence of a wishbone that the theropods did not have. All of these features tie it to birds and its other characteristics tie it to theropods. One might say it was the missing link between the two. Opponents of this idea say that the similarities between Archaeopteryx and theropods were due to convergence, with the birdlike dinosaurs appearing in the Cretaceous some 75 million years after Archaeopteryx.

Also, support is gaining that Archaeopteryx was not in fact the first bird, but instead a descendent of an earlier bird ancestor that had developed along a different pathway and actually represents an evolutionary dead end. Two opponents of the birds are dinosaurs theory are Alan Feduccia of the University of North Carolina and Larry Martin of the University of Kansas. They believe that birds evolved from some unknown reptile from a time before dinosaurs came to be.

One point they make is that flight must have begun from tree climbing or an arboreal ancestor but that all the proposed dinosaurian ancestors were ground dwellers or cursorial On the other side, supporters for the birds are dinosaurs theory feel there is an unknown dinosaur bird that was arboreal, or simply that birds evolved flight from the ground by chasing after insects. In recent years other fossil finds have stirred the argument even more. One of these is the fossil named Sinosauroptyrex found in China.

It appears to be an important link between birds and dinosaurs. Sinosauropteryx appears to be a feathered dinosaur having a mane of feathers along its neck, back, and taila feature until then seen only in birds. Sinosauroptyrex appears before Archaeopteryx and gives a substantial link between the theropods and birds. One opponent of this find is Martin who feels the structures that are considered to be feathers are simply frayed collagenous fibers beneath the skinhaving nothing to do with birds. Another find involves a fossil that was found in Madagascar in 1995.

The fossil was identified as a bird because its arm bones contained knobs where feathers would have been attached. It also has a reversed first toe, a characteristic of birds unknown in any other type of theropod dinosaur, according to Catherine Foster of the State University of New York at Stony Brook and discoverer of the fossil. The real link between the Madagascan bird and dinosaurs is the retractable claw on its second toe, which does not appear on any other birds. This is, according to some, direct proof showing a link between birds and theropods.

Opponents like Martin feel the creature is actually a dinosaur and not a bird at all. One of the main problems in deciding this argument is the time scale in which the fossils are found. Feduccia feels that one of the biggest problems is the time paradox, meaning that the so-called birdlike dinosaurs came too late to address avian evolution. Supporters of the theory feel they will eventually find the fossils they need to prove the birds are dinosaurs theory but it takes time to fill the gaps in the geologic fossil record and discover the missing links.

Jurassic Park Report

A stormy night, off the coast of Costa Rica, a young man is admitted into a hospital with a wound caused by a small, reptilian animal. He is diagnosed with severe nausea and some sort of blood poisoning. The man dies leaving the doctors with a problem of deciphering the origin of the disease and what it is. On the same island, approximately 20 miles north, a family is taking a vacation from their normal life in the city. Among these people, is a young girl with a knack for drawing and curiosity for animal life.

This young girl believes that her family will spot a sloth, which is the only mammal left on her list of animals to see. As she wanders off she stumbles upon a small lizard that shes never seen before and begins sketching the creature. The small animal seems to feel threatened so it attacks the girl in defense. The girl gets taken to a hospital for many of the same symptoms the young man was facing. Allen Grant, a paleontologist, with his girlfriend Elly Sadler, is on the verge of discovering the most intact fossil of his favorite dinosaur, the velociraptor.

When the two decide to start celebrating, they are visited by a very intelligent scientist, John Hammond. Hammond brings long a proposal that the two come with him to his special new park for an evaluation period. Of course, the two accept and board his helicopter, where there are two others waiting: Ian Malcolm, a scientist of chaos theory, and one of Hammonds lawyers. The helicopter escorts the crew to the small island, privately owned by Hammond, and upon landing Sadler discovers a plant species that has been extinct for millions of years.

Their amazement is doubled when the jeep they are driving in is greeted by a friendly brachiosaurus: a dinosaur. Welcome to Jurassic Park, Hammond proposes as everyone faints from their astonishment. Upon their rrival to the interpretive center, Hammond is greeted by his grandchildren, Tim and Lex- sent because of parental problems. To make the dinosaurs, Hammond has a crew of scientist excavate fossilized amber with remains of prehistoric mosquitoes that have dino blood and use that blood to get the building blocks of life, dino DNA.

With the mixture of the dino DNA and the DNA from frogs in Africa, the dinosaurs are made. Grant and crew take two little tour vans through the park, discovering the many dinosaurs that the park has to exhibit, including the dreaded T-Rex and velociraptors. Because the entire park is automated, except the xhibits, there are people to keep up with the running of all the electrical fences and vehicles-one of these people is Dennis Nedry. Nedry is hired to obtain several dinosaur embryos for a large corporation who would like these little gold mines. In order to maintain this goal he has to shut down all of the parks power.

In the mean time, because of the lack of dinosaurs in the exhibits, Elly travels out of the vans and ventures down a path where lies a sick triceratops. Elly stays behind with the vet and everyone else gets back into the vans. Back near the T-Rex exhibit, the power is shut off and Nedry breaks for the cold storage, eaving the tourists stranded near a highly dangerous animal who breaks from his enclosure and kills the lawyer, injurs Malcolm and strands Grant with Tim and Lex: in another area of the park, Nedry takes his embryos to his jeep and heads for the docks, but looses control and gets killed by a dilophosaurus.

Grant and kids make their way back to the interpretive center, and discover that the dinosaurs are breeding. Malcolm gets taken back with Sadler to Hammond where they turn the power back on and reunite with Grant, Tim and Lex. The group escapes the island and plan to destroy it.

The Fire Ant

The Fire Ant is one of the most feared migratory arthropods in North America. The first non-native species was introduced into the Port of Mobile, Alabama, starting in 1919, through soil ballast, from South American ships, being dumped ashore. The black fire ant (Solenopsis richteri Forel) arrived sometime in 1919, and the red fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) sometime in the late 1930s; both much more aggressive and harsh than their two sister species of fire ants, the Tropical fire ant (Solenopsis xyloni McCook) and the Southern fire ant (Solenopsis geminata Fabricius), which are considered native to North America.

The presence of imported fire ants within United States boarders was first reported in 1929. Currently, the IFA (imported fire ant) is found in eleven states (over 300 million acres) , with sporadic, isolated showings as far west as California and as far north as Kansas and Maryland. The surge in fire ant migration came right after world war two, with the housing boom. The migration of fire ants was mostly associated with the mass movement of grass sod and decorative plants for landscaping purposes.

However, In 1958, the Federal Fire Ant Quarantine was implemented [to] try to limit the spread of fire ants from the quarantined areas. Hay, sod, plants and used soil moving equipment must me inspected and/or treated before being moved out of the quarantine area. The IFA migration methods include seasonal relocations, migration in nursery stock, natural flights, and after floods rafting on water. Ants can be blown by the wind 12 miles during mating flights. They can hitchhike on birds [or other animals] or mass together to form a floating ball to ride out a flood.

It is estimated that a fire ant colony can expand 20-30 miles per year based on mating flights alone. The IFA migration fear is due to damage to people, but also damage to crops and property. Currently, the IFA is known as damaging 57 different species of cultivated plants including wheat, cotton, corn, sorghum seed, soybean, blueberry, peanut, sunflower, watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumber, pecan, eggplant, okra, strawberry, and potato in addition to property, fire ants have been associated with may outdoor electrical equipment, due to their strong attraction to electrical and magnetic fields and impulses.

The effected items where fire ants have been known to nest and be found include: gasoline pumps, traffic lights, electrical and telephone transformers/boxes, air conditions (many, many cases) heat pumps, TVs, computers, walls and plumbing insulation, water meters, insulation of electrical wiring causing electrical disruptions, and beside and beneath roadways. There have been reported cases of roadways collapsing because of fire ants removing massive amounts of soil beneath the road.

Because of their mounds and nesting habits, fire ants have caused many closing of athletic fields, school playgrounds, and campgrounds (much of this closing is due to the fear and stigma behind the fire ant. This fear and stigma will be discussed later. ) More than its damage-causing tendency, the fire ant is feared because of its fierce sting. The fire ant sting is characteristic, with its fiery burning sensation, giving the ant its (common) name. Areas where there is a large colony can, and should be, considered dangerous. In infested areas, fire ant stings occur more frequently than bee, wasp, hornet, and yellowjacket stings.

Stepping on a fire and mound is almost unavoidable, especially when walking in heavily infested areas. Furthermore, many mounds are not easily seen, with many lateral tunnels extending several feet away from the mound just beneath the soil surface. Ants defend these tunnels as part of their mound. The ant grabs onto the skin with barbed mandibles, then doubles over its abdomen and stings with it stinger (an ovipositor, considering the only fire ants that sting are the workers, who are sterile females. ) The fire ant will sting even after its venom sack is depleted of its venom.

It is known that once a fire ant nest is disturbed, or one ant releases an alarm pheromone, ants will swarm the nest and the area around it, in defense, for over 8 minutes. In the U. S, they will storm anything that threatens their mound or looks like food, whether it be old people, crawling babies, injured waterfowl, newborn rabbits and fawns, bedridden hospital patients, or you just walking along. A person who stops to stand on a mound or on one of its tunnels, or who leans against a fence post included in the defended area, can have hundreds of ants rush out to attack.

Usually, the ants will be swarming a person (or animal) for 10 seconds before attacking and stinging the victim; this allows more ants to swarm because the victim does not know they are being attacked. Although a single fire ant sting hurts less than a bee or was sting, the effect of multiple stings is impressive. Multiple stings are common, not only because hundreds of ants may have attacked, but also because individual ants can administer several stings. Each sting usually results in the formation of a pustule within 6-24 hours.

The majority of stings are uncomplicated, but secondary infections may occur if the pustule is broken, and scars may last for several months. Severe infections requiring skin grafting or amputation have been known to occur from [infected] fire ant stings. It is estimated that fire ants sting more than 5 million Americans every year. More than 25,000 people seek medical attention each year for painful fire ant bites. It is said that about a dozen Americans die of their fire ant wounds (or complications thereof) each year. With such high numbers, it is no wonder that there is such a fear of these pesky little creatures.

An important indirect effect of the presence of fire ants is just the fear of being stung. Fear and anxiety about fire ants may limit the use of sites where fire ants are present. In some parks, playgrounds, athletic fields, and campsites are not used simply because of the fear of the ants in the area. The fire ant, like any other living organism, has to eat. The fire ant eats mainly liquids, however, when only solid food is available, the fire ant will cut the food into manageable pieces and carry it back to the colony, to share with the others.

The first to be fed the protein-based material gathered is the queen. The rest of the colony will eat what is left over. The fire ant gathers liquids by sucking up the substance, and regurgitating it back at the colony, to share. When a food is of solid substance, the ants releases enzymes upon the food to liquefy it, where then it can be sucked back up and fed to the queen and then other workers and winged fire ants. In addition to the above-mentioned crops, fire ants are widely known to eat saplings, wildflowers, fruits and grasses, honeydew, sugars, oils, seeds, and insects.

Of all the resources available to the fire ant to eat, the fire ant looks for items with the most protein in it. Fire ants are known to attack wild animals, including snakes, mice, and turtles. But above and beyond all, the fire ant enjoys insects most of all. If left alone, the fire ant is an effective control of fleas, flies, boll weevils, sugarcane borers, ticks, and cockroaches. Above and beyond all, the fire ant is an invasive ant that can become quite dangerous, if you are not protected.

Upon heavy rains, whole colonies will invade homes and take refuge in walls and in the comfort of carpeting. This leaves potentially defenseless people, such as bedridden people and infants at a high risk. It is almost enough to know that massive control is needed when there is a countrywide fear of these little ants. Since the 1950s, the fire ant has been the subject of huge governmental control attempts. The federal government has used everything from quarantine to massive chemical sprays (and laying in terms of solid chemical pellets.

With all these attempts, very few have proven successful, for one reason or the other. Either the chemical kills too many kinds of insects, or the fire ant does not feed upon it. Many chemicals and pellets have caused drastic decreases in mouse and snake populations, in addition to affecting domestic livestock, and therefore have been banned. Currently, the US government is taking it upon individual landowners to control their own fire ant problems. (The landowners, mostly farmers have many reasons to do so. For one, fire ant mounds often damage cultivating and mowing equipment.

For another, more important reason, hand-picked crops, like blueberries, are being left to rot because nobody will go into the fire ant infested fields to pick the crop. ) The landowners are now using individual mound baits. These are protein based, poisoned sponges or pellets. The idea is that when the workers get the food, which is high in protein, they will immediately feed it to the queen, causing her to die, and therefore the colony to fallout. These methods are effective, however, on a slow, mound-to-mound basis.

People have to learn to deal with fire ants over the long term. The days of massive chemical treatments, I think, are pretty much over We are working on introducing a number of organisms from South America to provide biological control for fire ants, maybe some diseases of the ant, some parasites, and probably even some predators. But none of those are going to be the golden bullet. On a personal and final note. My grandfather, who lives in Florida, near Tampa, has a small blueberry farm, where he, of course, grows blueberries.

Upon one visit, a long while back, I was maybe 12; my brother and I were wrestling (funny, how I let an 8 year old kick my butt. but never mind. ) In this area, walking (or rolling) into a fire ant mound is unavoidable, and so I did. Well, not to mention, I got the crap bit out of me, and I was covered in blisters, and no matter what I did, I could not stop itching. But Ill tell you, when they sting, the hurt. It is a burning sensation inside your skin that you cant get rid of. OK, OK, there is more to the story. 4 days later, we went to Disneyland, where we stayed in a cabin in some sort of forest, owned by Disney.

I distinctly remember one day, as we were out at a small snack bar, an adult (older male, but at that time registered as adult) asked me if I had been bitten by a lot of mosquitoes (as my legs were pot marked). I replied no, that they were ant bites, and upon this, I got a stern lecture, in front of my grandpa on how dangerous fire ants were and how stupid it was to mess with them. And the adult was right. But I must say, I have not learned. Still, whenever I go the Florida, I drive golf balls on my grandfathers farm, using fire ant mounds as tees. Its always fun to have the ants swarm the ball before you drive it.

Aggression, a critical part of animal existence

Aggression is a critical part of animal existence, which is an inherent driving force to humans, as we, too, are animals. The source of aggression within humans is a long summative list, but before trying to understand its source one must apply a working definition of aggression. Aggressive behavior is defined by Encyclopedia Britannica as any action of an animal that serves to injure an opponent or prey animal or to cause an opponent to retreat. (7) David G. Myers states that aggression is any physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt or destroy. )

There are many types of aggressive behaviors, which can be differentiated from the factual act to the hidden motives. For example, an aggressive behavior can be negative or positive, accidental or intended, and physical or mental. Aggression can take numerous forms, the act of hitting a wall to release aggression has some of the same roots as playing football and enjoying hitting the quarterback. A child yelling at his parents could be equated, in its aggressiveness, with hitting ones horn when one is cut off on 495.

Aggression is also a relative construct. What might seem like a terribly aggressive act to one person, most often the victim, might seem like an induced response to the perpetrator. (3) Psychologist Arlene Stillwell performed an experiment where she assigned ordinary college students at random to play the role of a victim or a perpetrator in a small incident. Then she asked the students to describe the situation that had just transpired. What she found was that both victims and perpetrators deformed the truth equally to present their sides in a better light.

Victims would dwell on their lasting traumas from the incident while the perpetrator might make the act seem like a one-time action provoked by insurmountable circumstances. The resulting implication is that aggression is in the eye of the beholder. (3) Due to its relative nature aggression is extremely hard to isolate and study. Some acts are very easy to categorize as aggressive, a first degree murder or first degree rape, but is negligent manslaughter aggressive?

The mere act of not shoveling ones sidewalk might have the same effect as a cold-blooded murder but is it an aggressive act? For the purposes of this paper aggression will be related to the four conditions presented by Gerda Siann.

They are as follows; 1. The person carrying out that behavior, the aggressor, does so with intention. 2. The behavior is taking place within an interpersonal situation which is characterized by an accumulated distress or a opposition. 3. The aggressor intends by the behavior in question to gain a greater advantage than the person on the other side of the aggression. 4. The aggressor carrying out the behavior has either provoked the situation or moved the conflict unto a higher degree of strength. (11)

Aggression has numerous reasons and consequences both must be analyzed in order to see from whence it arises. An explicit example of the strength of both nature and nurture concerning aggression is the life of Kody Scott, a young gang member of California. He was already a gang member in middle school, and would not have been had the gang not already been in place when he graduated from elementary school thus environments role in aggressive behavior, but one fateful day when he stole a car to get to the hospital for the birth of his first child, he intentionally detoured through the neighborhood of a rival gang and killed a rival gang member. The detour he deliberately took was a conscious decision and not provoked by the environment hence natures toll on his aggressive act. (3)

Aggression is usually associated with negative aspects of the world. (3) This is not necessarily true, though. Negativity is but half of the nature of aggression. Aggression can have very positive results. For example, a non-aggressive hockey player gets thrown around and will therefore not perform very well in an bellicose sport. On the other hand an aggressive player will not allow himself to be thrown around like the aforementioned player and will most likely win the small battles just based on the mentality of the player. )

Another example of positive aspects of aggression might be a persons sexual aggressiveness might allow them to obtain a date to prom without any problem, whereas anyone much less aggressive person would be passive and wait for the person to approach them. One good aspects of aggressiveness might be ambitiousness or assertiveness, an aggressive person is more likely to get what they need done as opposed to the inactive person. Outgoing, a socially positive trait is nothing more than aggressiveness personified.

A female high school senior might be more successful and be rewarded (by being voted for Best Personality in the MOCK awards) for being socially aggressive outgoing. Aggression can also be characterized by mentality. Where one hurts someone out of rage or whether one thinks of numerous ways of hurting someone, aggression still is present in both situations. The thoughts of a people, for example the Germans in World War Two can be just as aggressive as the act as the systematic murder of the Jewish community. (8) Aggression in this case was an extreme example of a spiraling staircase.

The Nazi party did not begin a process of systematic murder at the beginning of their rule, first they instituted a hate as scapegoats toward the Jews, they then removed some luxuries that the Jews had, then they removed citizenship, followed by imprisonment, then to slave labor, and lastly the “Final Solution” was implemented. The thoughts of hatred at the beginning of the platform was just as dangerous and aggressive as the gas chambers of late WWII. These aggressive feelings allowed the Germans to desensitize each other to a point of genocide. 1)

By solely disliking someone they looked the other way when the book burning began, then it was just a small step to the first pogrom, then they just accepted the de-humanization of Jews, and this was followed by an escalating progress which led eventually to the inhumane murder of close to six million human lives. Along with these pure feelings of anger and hatred aggressionthe Germans also tried to scapegoat and thereby provide catharsis for themselves by blaming the downfall of their troubles on the Jewish community.

This displacement somehow released pent up rage that had been present for numerous years of misery for the Germans. (3, Handler) Thus thoughts also cause aggression or are manifestations of the pure aggression. The most obvious example of aggression is killing, for that reason the example for this paper will be the untimely death of people as caused by others. From very young ages death permeates into all of our lives. From having a loved grandparents passing away to the learning how to read the newspaper and reading about terrible deaths daily, if not more often.

One strong argument supports that people have built-in aggression. Much like the theories of Freud, that people have instinctual aggression, whether sexual or violent, a multitude of scientists and psychologists believe that biology is crucial in the development of aggression. (9) For example aggression has been correlated numerous times in a significant way with testosterone. (1) One psychologist, Jack Hokanson, has tracked catharsis theories for a number of years.

One experiment performed by this man seemed to point that in order to reduce violence or aggression men would react angrily, whereas women would react in a friendly manner when presented with aggressive behaviors. (2) The variable that was tested here were the differences in the genders which proved to be quite polar, for the men were belligerent and the women were almost uniformly kind. (12) Differences in physical strength also have provided for differences in aggression levels between the two sexes.

Since men are physically built stronger than women they are more likely to become aggressive than are women who are not, in general, as physically strong. Neurotransmitters seem to play a very important part in the aggressive nature of mammals. As tested in monkeys, who have matching 99 percent of their genes with humans, it has been found that hyper-aggressive or antisocial monkeys have a deficit of the neurotransmitter serotonin. As an interesting side note the leaders, who have a different type of aggression assertionhave higher levels of this same chemical. )

In this same study the monkeys seemed to have very predictable heredity patterns, In which the monkeys were found to easily exhibit the same behavior as the father. This was also found to be true “in men who have been discharged from the Marines for excessive violence, as well as in criminals in Finland who committed acts of wanton violence. “(8) Seratonin has also found to be an inhibiting factor concerning aggression. A situation or condition that reduces seratonin levels is among drugs, hypoglycemia.

Hypoglycemia is a condition of lowered blood sugar, certain diets can cause or inhibit the onset of this condition, thus directly affecting genetically the aggressive behavior of a person. (12) On the topic of diets an correlation has been found with the corn (a food that decreases the levels of seratonin in the brain) intake of a country and the homicide rates, an obviously aggressive marker. (10) Another chemical in the human machine that causes or has been related to has been the “anger hormone” adrenaline and its counterpart noradrenaline.

This is inherent in the flight or fight reflex, in which fighting is usually prepared by a flush of adrenaline into the system, and anger/aggression are integral parts of it. (12) Stanley Hall found that anger has numerous different effects on the human body, depending on the person. Aggression can cause either an increase or a decrease in heart rate depending on the anger causing stimulus. (12) For example, a psychologist named Albert F. Ax found that his test subjects were experiencing the slowing of their hearts because they were concentrating too hard on the event supposed to turn them aggressive, in the case of his experiment a mugger. 2)

Another study done by a man named Eron in 1987, showed that most children, who when described by their peers as having high levels of aggression, are three times as likely to have a criminal conviction by the age of 30 than those children who were rated as having high levels of pro-social behavior. (10) That study shows the apparent stability, or lack of change, in the behavior of people thereby fueling the genetic, or nature, side of the nature versus nurture war that is currently being fought. Epilepsy has also been affiliated with aggressive behavior or at least with outbursts of it.

A very strong correlation has been made between the focus of epileptic discharges being in the temporal lobe of the brain and discharges of violent and aggressive behavior. (1) That condition can be helped by psychosurgery but is not used as common as possible because the biological age group who most is affected by this circumstance are juveniles or violent offenders who are not capable of giving unbiased, informed consent to irreversible procedures. Furthermore, evidence liking antisocial conductaggressionwith abnormal electrical activity in the temporal lobes.

Using a electroencephalogram (EEG) to study these waves of electricity in the temporal lobe of sufferers of a sociopath complex, psychologists have surmised that the aggressive personality disorders are related to a delay of maturation in these areas of the brain, this could be cause by a innumerable amount of factors like fetal infection, brain trauma, or lack of proper nutrients in diet. (1) In 1969 a psychologist by the name of Williams used an EEG on 333 men convicted of crimes and found that out of the 206 men who had a history of crimes has a disruption, or dysrhythmias, in the temporal lobes.

Following the genetic track of aggression is the undeniable fact that aggressive behavior also declines sharply with age. (10) Another physiological factor that might affect the aggressiveness and even violence level of a person is that of cerebral trauma, especially diseases. These people who exhibit an “impairment of the control systems of the brain” also have been known to occasionally suffer from persistent brain immaturity, brain damage, or toxic impairment of the brain. There has also been presented the single-gene notion about psychopath or sociopath behavior.

Researchers have found that significant number of prisoners have an extra sex chromosomes, for example an “XXY” or “XYY”. (12) Their being in jail does not seem to be the root of their problem but rather it seems to stem from “their low level of intelligence,” which is inherently a genetically influence aspect, according to Robert A. Baron. (10) In post-war studies, studies of the most aggressive of all activities, there have been similarities found with soldier. For example several senior U. S.

Air Force officers have stated that when the Air Force tried to pre-select fighter pilots after world war two the only common denominator between their WWII aces was that they had all been involved in numerous altercations as children. Not as bullies but rather as fighters, the type of person who would not back down once attacked or hurt. This seemed like a strange connection between the type of job and a similarity in childhood activities, because significantly less than a third of school populations engage in fights on a regular basis. This seems to point at a genetic capacity for violence and aggression.

More informally, Gwynne Dyer has felt, through his experiences as a soldier, his genes at work as he says; Aggression is certainly part of our genetic makeup, and necessarily so, but the normal human beings quota of aggression will not cause him to kill acquaintances, let alone wage war against strangers from a different country. The overwhelming majority of those who have killedhave done so as soldiers in war, and we recognize that that has practically nothing to do with the kind of personal aggression that would endanger us as their fellow citizens. )

Here a regular serving soldier spoke with experience of seeing the numerous soldiers that “[derived] their greatest satisfaction from male companionship, from excitement, and from the conquering of physical obstacles. ” Those men were most likely part of the 2 percent of combat soldiers (as noted by Swank and Marchands WWII study) are predisposed to be “aggressive psychopaths. “(8) Men can be compared to animals concerning this apparent predisposition to aggression.

For example, in most species it is the best hunter, the best fighter, the most aggressive male who ends up passing on his genetic data unto a female and thereby an offspring. An offshoot of this aggressive psychopath, is another genetic predisposition, the presence or apathy of empathy for others. Life magazine printed in their latest magazine that, “the heritability of most personality traits is about 50 percent. “(4) Thus showing the strong predisposition to certain behaviors, namely aggression. Furthermore, “aggression[is a trait] with high heritability. 4)

As a result of this there has been recent debate in some states, like Minnesota, who have been trying to obtain a sort of genetic cleansing by not allowing the “riff-raff” of society to breed. This ethical question shoots back to days of 19th century anthropologist Francis Galton who also recommended breeding quotas to weed out the “unfit. “(4) It also sounds much like the callings of another well-known historical figure from the 1940s, the leader of the Third Reich, Adolph Hitler. (Handler) Nurturing also presents a strong argument for the development of violence and or aggression.

Going back to the situation with Kody Scott, how could he have killed his rival gang member had he not been there, the environment and the years of spending in a violent gang helped him make the choice to cold-bloodedly execute the young man. (3) One of the most heated debates going on today is the conditioning value of movies and the rest of the media. Do movies really affect us in aggressive ways? The United States Navy seems to think so, for one of their psychiatrists developed a “formula” to psychologically enable certain soldiers to become assassins and this process consists of using violent movies.

They do perform this process in order to desensitize the government paid assassin to murders, executions, and unfeeling deaths. There appear to be three major types of conditioning occurring with the media concerning violence. First, there is a classical conditioning when people sit at home and see detailed, horrible suffering of people and they are associating this killing and suffering with their enjoyment, with a big container of pop-corn, with their favorite soft-drink, and with their friends and company, all things that the person sees as positive.

B. F. Skinners operant conditioning comes into play through interactive video games where there is a reward for killing or destroying numerous things with no concern for their well-being. Lastly, social learning as described by Bandura seems to take in mind the numerous role models who people see nowadays in the movies. (8) For example, in the movie Pulp Fiction, the hero Butch (Bruce Willis) ends up killing two people and he is glorified at the end of the movie. He makes up with the person who was chasing him, makes a large amount of money, survives the two homosexual rapists, and goes off to a paradise with his girlfriend.

There is not much more of a perfect example of someone who could potentially be seen as a good guy who actually smokes, cheats, kills, lies, and steals. Children also develop attachments to the type of behavior exhibited by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or Robert Deniro from either Goodfellas or Heat. (9) Both of these turn into obvious role models for children and adolescents. Media such as cartoons presents the evil villain as someone who always has a sadistic desire for destruction of ransom impersonal someone. More often than not, thought, they are not like “you.

For example, in the movie Die Hard III Bruce Wilis is the protagonist and Jeremy Irons is the antagonist. Bruce Wilis, being the good guy, is an all-American type of guy, who speaks almost perfect New York English. On the other hand the villain, Jeremy Irons has an accent which sounds as if it were from Germanic Europe (Germany is a very good stereotypical evil because of its activities in the early 20th century). This promotes aggression between people of differing descents because the media presents a view that blatantly states foreign people are enemies. )

Movies also tend to give the feeling that the victim will be dehumanized, much like how in Vietnam soldiers referred to “the enemy” as VC or Charlie, thus removing any individualistic characteristics from the enemy, it turned to be just one single, foreign foe. (3,8) This social phenomenon especially holds true since most criminals and aggressors generally have a below-average intelligence, thus are more mentally malleable. Leonard Berkowitz found that; There is a remarkable consistency to these findings.

The studies reviewed here agree in noting that punitive parental disciplinary methods (such as physical punishment and depriving children of privileges) ten to be associated with a high level of aggression and other forms of antisocial behavior by the children. Love-oriented disciplinary methods on the other hand, evidently facilitate the development of conscience and internalized restraints against socially disapproved behavior. (12) This is very important in the development of children for most sexual offenders, whether rapists or child abusers, were often time abused themselves as a child or adolescent.

Punishment inherently increases resentment and hostility, thus creating an environment where the child does not care for the parents and all of the associations that can be made with the parent, like their morals, rules, and respects. Isolation also tends to have a very strong effect on the mentality of aggression. Usually with a lack of interpersonal relationships people cannot fully appreciate the human existence and most often do not learn how to handle destructive urges because they do not care about society, which innately is an interpersonal relationship. )

The aforementioned monkeys with the lower seratonin levels also, when normal, became hyper-aggressive social misfits when reared by a mechanized surrogate mother, who did not give the monkeys affection. This brings up Freuds theory of repressed memories, in which the person puts traumatic experiences from their past into their subconscious. (1) Freud believed that these repressed memories will surface in the form of disorders and problems, mostly exhibited through either sexual dysfunction or violence. ) Therefore our early surroundings affect us for most of our lives, at least according to Sigmund Freud.

Environment and exposure compounds any genetic factors, for instance, the inner parts of Washington D. C. have considerably higher aggressive crime rates (murder, rape, aggravated assault) than a Maryland suburb like the Derwood/Olney/Flower Hill area does. Reasons for such rates are that the city houses more people closer to the poverty line. (3) These people have constant stresses that people do not need to deal with in the suburbs. Drugs and alcohol are also a considerably stronger force in the city.

Those two intoxicants allow people to perform acts that they would regularly not have the mind to do. For example, alcohol is consumed, a person looses their inhibitory brain functions and are more likely to “forget” the consequences of an aggravated assault or a murder. (3,9) For that reason it is likely that there was a rash of psychopathic killers in the Russo-Asiatic area in the past decades. In cities, because of the higher level drug business there is a greater need for guns and weapons. Due to the higher level of guns intrinsically there will be more murder and violence.

The environment thus fuels the violent nature of the city-dwellers. Immediate environment also tends to influence aggression. For example, a person could be inadvertently aggressive toward another in the following way; One person sits down at the only open stool in a bar, he orders a bowl of pretzels and a cold beer. The bartender brings him his beer, and he begins to read his newspaper. Suddenly the person next to him eats a pretzel, without saying a word. At this the person is shocked, and thinks, “how can this cruel person be eating my pretzels?

Out of fear for starting an argument he says nothing but eats one of the pretzels and both men take turns eating pretzels from the bowl until they are gone. The other man then puts money for his beer down and walks away. The first man then thinks, “Wow! I am glad that evil person is gone, who would steal a complete strangers pretzels, Honestly? ” The bartender then arrives and says, “here is your pretzel bowl enjoy. “(3, Adams Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy) The victim immediately turned into the aggressor by taking the other mans pretzels.

Thus inadvertently being extremely aggressive towards another human. Immediate distance also generally affects the aggressiveness level of a person, especially when killing is involved. The tendency is as follows; the further away one is from the intended victim the least resistance there will be towards committing the act of aggression. The bomber pilots who firebombed the city of Dresden, Hamburg, or Tokyo caused the deaths of about 400,000 people but not once did they hear the screaming or see the faces of the untold number of children, women, and elderly that they killed.

On the other hand, a person within knife range of person will have a more traumatic repercussions of killing someone. Whereas the artillery sergeant will never see the face of his victims, the infantry man will see the terrible contortions of their victims faces and hear their pitiful screams as a bullet rips through the inner lining of their stomach and all intestinal acid seeps onto the rest of their organs. (8) It is a much more traumatic experience and will thereby lower the aggressive level and might even make the aggressor penitent.

For example one WWII soldiers, William Manchester, states how; There was a door which meant there was another room and the sniper was in that and I just broke that down. I was just absolutely gropped by the fear that this man would expect me and would shoot me. But as it turned out he was in a sniper harness and he couldnt turn around fast enough. He was entangled in the harness so I shot him with a . 45 and I felt remorse and shame.

I just remember whispering foolishly, “Im sorry” and then just throwing up. (8) This point of view contrasts sharply with the prerogative of J. Douglas Harvey a World War II bomber pilot who upon visiting rebuilt Berlin said, “I could not visualize the horrible deaths my bombshad caused here. I had no feeling of guilt. “(8) Another important factor involving the aggression of people are other people. Very few times does an aggressive act stand alone, there is almost always mutual fault and/or shared blame.

David Luckenbill found, in one of his studies, that the major part of criminal homicide revolved around some sort of reciprocal provocations in which collective hostility escalated until one person murdered the other. (3) Murray Straus found the same circumstance appeared in marital violence. In half of the reported cases of domestic violence it was found that both spouses were violent, it just tended to be that one person was considerably stronger than the other. (3) Aggressive behavior has been a huge part of humankind since people first starting walking somewhat erect.

From our predecessor the “killer ape” to the intricacies of nuclear warfare. Whether it is a “caveman” clubbing his enemy for stealing his food, or a highly paid sniper sitting atop a roof waiting for a South American dictator to walk out of his house, aggression follows us wherever we might go. Aggression is a force that is hard to imagine and even harder to harness. Should people ever learn to control and thereby use their aggression towards greater good, the walls we now know would crumble easily under the forcing of such a force.

Animals and Their Rights

When it comes to animals and their rights, there is a definite line between our needs and our taking advantage of those species that we consider inferior. As long as man has existed he has been carnivorous, and the same holds true for many other species of animals. Animals are a necessity to humans for survival, whether it be for food, clothing, etc. However, the unnecessary torture of animals through testing is not a necessity for human survival. When it comes to the needless torture of animals that we claim to benefit, the animals lives need to be taken into consideration.

S. F. Sapontzis gives his theory as to why animals should not be used in testing. To start with, animals are not capable of giving their consent to be used as subjects in an experiment. Secondly, “experiments can only be performed on an individual who is willing, morally speaking. Therefore it is immoral to use animals in experiments” (Sapontzis 209). It would be great if this world where our lives were actually governed by morals. The sad truth is that we do not. Until we do, someone is going to have to stand up for the silent majority that is incapable of voicing its opinion.

When there is torture and unjust treatment towards humans, people then realize that it is wrong. These people realize that it’s wrong when it comes to animals as well. Henry Spira said of the animals used in experiments: “the victims are unable to organize in defense of their own interests” (Spira 194). When it comes to needlessly conducting experiments on animals, no one ever says anything. Humans need to stop thinking about themselves as a superior species to other animals. They have to start thinking about how we can stop the cruelty that they inflict upon animals day after day in experiment after experiment.

Tom Regan, a well-known animal rights activist, wrote, “the fundamental wrong is the system that allows us to view animals as our resources, here for us- to be eaten, or surgically manipulated, or exploited for sport or money” (Regan 14). Nothing could be more true than this fact; man considers itself such a superior species that all others were put on earth for his convenience. It is this type of thinking that has gotten humans to the place where we are today. What humanity needs to do is get off its high-horse and realize that they are not the king of the jungle and we really are no better than any other animal that roams the earth.

It has been suggested that we are a higher form of life than animals. Following this line of thought, according to Sapontzis, experiments should be performed on animals in order to preserve the life of man. Therefore “experiments should be performed on animals in order to protect our species and enhance our lives” (Sapontzis 209). If this is true, then humans should have the right to do whatever it takes to better our situation, including taking advantage of other life forms that we consider lower than themselves.

In Animal Revolution, Richard Ryder writes, “Scientist frequently justify experiments upon non-humans in terms of the benefit they may bring to others” (Ryder 241). This line of thinking illustrates the idea that the sacrificing of one living thing is made in the name of science if it leads to saving of other living things. The problem with this is that animals- such as rats, mice, rabbits, even dogs- are being used to find ways to save the lives of humans. Once again, humans are placed above all other animals when it comes to superiority in life.

Ryder also writes, “Experimenting on humans might well produce far more valid results than do tests on rats” (Ryder 241). If this is true, the fact that humans continue to do research on rodents is absurd. Researchers claim that tests on such animals are needed in order to protect humans in some cases, yet this makes no sense if the data has gotten from these experiments has no relevancy to humans at all. What this amounts to is the unnecessary use and torture of innocent animals that brings about no real contribution to the scientific world or mankind either.

While laboratory rats and mice do greatly differ from humans in genetic make-up, primates do not. It has been found that there are many similarities between chimps and mankind. This is why researchers consider them to make such ideal test subjects. Many primates have been used in experiments that have had overwhelming outcomes where the testing could actually be considered beneficial because of its effect on the human race. This brings us back to the theory that it is morally just if one suffers for the benefit of many. No researcher alive would ever consider using a human test subject to perform such tests that are used on the primates.

This of course is because humans consider themselves superior to all others, but also because of the pain factor. No scientists or researcher would be able to stand using a six-month-old baby or a four-year-old child to test such things as deadly viruses due to the fact that the test would suffer. Primates, on the hand, most researchers feel comfortable using because “they do not feel pain. ” Certainly this is not true, for it has been found by scientists that primates are closely related in genetic in genetic make-up to humans and can therefore experience the same levels of pain as we do.

In her essay entitled The Monkey Wars, Deborah Blum describes the horrible living conditions and tremendous suffering of one group of primates used in an experiment to test the rehabilitation of limbs when surgically crippled: No one bothered to bandage the monkeys’ injuries properly (on the few occasions when bandages where used at all), and antibiotics were administered only once; no lacerations or self-amputation injuries were ever cleaned. Whenever a bandage was applied, it was never changed, no matter how filthy or soiled it became. They were left on until they deteriorated to the point where they fell off the injured limb.

Old, rotted fragments of bandage were stuck to the cage floors where they collected urine and feces. The monkeys also suffered from a variety of wounds that were self-inflicted or inflicted by monkeys grabbing at them from adjoining cages. I saw discolored, exposed muscle tissue on their arms. Two monkeys had bones protruding through their flesh. Several had bitten off their own fingers and had festered stubs, which they extended towards me as I discreetly took fruit from my pockets. With these pitiful limbs they searched through the foul mess of their waste pans for something to eat (Blum 137).

Deborah Blum also makes reference to the Silver Spring Monkeys when she describes the condition of one primate after he was rescued from the facility in 1981: Paul was a crab-eating macaque with a dragging left arm. The nerves from the spinal cord to the arm- the relay system from the brain- had been severed in an experiment, a study of the body’s response to major nerve loss. Paul has been a chunky monkey once, weighing almost 20 pounds. But when he died, in 1989, he was down to a little over 7 pounds. This is how he died: First, he began to chew apart his nerve- dead arm. Isolated macaques do mutilate themselves and Paul lived alone.

He was too crippled, too defenseless, to be housed with another animal. The chewing could go on and on. On February 16, 1989 he attacked the arm as if it was a snake, suddenly coming to coil around him. His teeth cracked the bones in his hand. “His arm looked like it had been though a meat-grinder,” says Marion Ratterree, a veterinarian at the Tulane Regional Primate Research Center, where Paul was housed. The vets decided to amputate at mid-arm, severing near the elbow. They were reluctant to take off the whole arm, which required breaking apart the shoulder socket. After surgery, Paul went back to his cage.

He refused to eat. His caretakers tried to comfort his, scratching his back. They tried to tempt him with peanut butter, rice cakes, sliced banana. He just turned away. He developed a wasting, draining diarrhea that responded to no drugs. Gangrene appeared in spreading black streaks. On July 4, Ratterree took off the rest of the arm, cracking apart the rest of the shoulder anyway. Paul kept losing weight. They tried force-feeding him with tubes into the stomach, but he continued to wither. He lost the strength to stand. He died, down on the floor of his cage, head tucked against the remaining arm, on August 26 (Blum 105- 106).

There is no reason for treating a primate like Paul in those kinds of conditions. Of course, not all primates in captivity that are used in experimentation are forced to live in such deplorable conditions, but that does not mean that they do not suffer. Regardless of how they are treated, all animals used in experiments suffer to some degree, including not only primates, but rats, mice, rabbits, cats, and dogs as well. Though it would not appear that the animals used in the Draize Test suffer the same amount or to the same degree, they suffer greatly none-the-less.

In his essay “Fighting to Win,” Henry Spira describes this test: “You start with six albino rabbits. You take each animal and check that the eyes are in good condition. Then, holding the animal firmly, you pull the lower lid away from one eyeball so that it forms a small cup. Into this cup you drop 100 milligrams of whatever it is you want to test. You hold the rabbit’s eye closed for one second and then let it go. A day later you come back and see if the lids are swollen, the iris inflamed, the cornea ulcerated, the rabbit blinded in that eye.

That is the Draize Test, named after John H. Draize, a former official of the Food and Drug Administration of the United States. It is the standard test applied to every substance, from cosmetics for the suffering and death of hundreds of thousands of rabbits each year” (Spira 194). Researchers continue to claim that their experiments are benefiting humanity, but the sad truth is that most experiments really have no significant impact on the scientific world or human life other than that they interest the scientists. Other experiments that are conducted on animals that are destroyed afterwards could easily be conducted on human volunteers.

It has been estimated that between 100 million and 200 million animals die in laboratories around the world each year” (Ryder 77-78). Although it has been proven that a lot of good has come out of animal research and animal testing, this does not make up for all the pain and suffering that these animals go though without being able to consent. The truth still remains that, despite the benefits (when there are benefits), perhaps we need to contemplate the effects that our actions are having on these animals.

Animal Rights – Do We Really Love Our Animals

Do you consider yourself a pet lover? Do you love animals in general? Can you imagine yourself as a little boy in a trailer far away from the depths of socialization? Once upon a time there was this boy, and this boy had a friend. No matter how hard times got he had Bo. The boy was incredibly happy because he had always dreamed of having a dog like that, a companion. Then your friend dies and you are left standing. Can you imagine the pain? Nobody likes to lose a good friend or a pet, and the majority of the population loves animals.

However, evidence points that people dont like animals as much as they claim to because the majority of the population tends to over look the genocide that exists this very instance. Gandhi once wrote, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the ways its animals are treated”(Why Vegan? 1) Gandhi brings up a good point because the issue of Animal Rights is in fact an issue of ones moral code. To define the morality and ethics, this paper will refer to Ayn Rands definition taken from the book, The Virtue of Selfishness.

Rand describes itthis way, “It is a code of values to guide a mans choices and actions that determine the purpose of his life” (Rand 13). Can the common animal lover really love animals that much and is it in their moral code to protect the living? Maybe they would if they were presented with the facts about vivisection and the meat industry. The truth of the matter is, people dont love animals as much as they claim to, because they allow mistreatment, support companies that practice Vivisection, and the majority of the population still eats meat.

The first form of oppression comes from probably one of the most grotesquely cruel practices of all. Did you know that from buying your toothpaste to buying your cosmetics, you open yourself up for the opportunity to participate in the funding of Vivisection? PETA, an international non profit organization designed to protect the rights of animals has defined the term as, “Vivisection is the practice of experimenting on live animals” (PETA 1). Lets start with the large amount of animals Vivisection effects.

The American Anti-Vivisection Society reports that, “Between 25 and 50 million animals are killed in American Laboratories each Year”(www. aavs. org/Doc). Animals such as mice, rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets, cats, dogs, primates, sheep, cows, and pigs are subjected to the effects of Vivisection. The tests are conducted by government agencies, corporations, hospitals, the military, and chemical companies. The single largest financier and advocate of vivisection would have to be The National Institutes of Health(NIH). The saddest part about this is that we as taxpayers are paying for the inhumane and cruel treatment of animals.

Every time we pay our taxes we are supporting Vivisection. The American Anti-vivisection Society states that, “These animals can be subjected to a mydraid of painful procedures. They are burned, starved, irradiated, shocked, mutilated, kept in isolation, poisoned, drugged, electrocuted, and the list goes on and on”(www. aavs. org/Docs/). The tests range from a monkeys eyes being sewn shut for long periods of times, to a dogs eyes getting burned by radiation, and even so far as to subject fully conscience cats and dogs to surgery with no anesthetic.

When they are done, if they survive they are then reused for more tests. Often times, animals such as dogs and cats are silenced through a grotesque procedure. This process which consists of cutting the animals vocal chords to silence the specimen. The most common type of test used by corporations is the Draize test. The Draize test is used for testing the safety of the corporations product. Sidney Gidens put it best in his essay entitled “The Use of Animals in Science”, where Gidens says “Named after its inventor, John Draize, who developed the method in 1944.

The test consists of placing rabbits in stocks that immobilize their heads and then dropping the substance to be tested into one eye, using the other eye as a controller”(Regan 199). These tests are often conducted over elongated periods of time, and usually the fate of the animal is blindness, sometimes death, and always pain. Rabbits are the most commonly used animal involved in Draize testing because their tear ducts are too inefficient to dilute the harmful substances being drained into their eyes.

One of the most common arguments for Vivisection would have to be the scientific fable of the impression of helping mankind. This point is not valid, for the fact that computers and technology have revolutionized the field. Often times the researchers have no central data base to store information that is not even needed so the tests are continued over and over again. PETA states, “Computer modeling shows great promise for testing human responses to various stimuli, and many drug and cosmetics companies already use artificial skin to gauge the biological responses of human skin to their products”(PETA 2).

Since there are no efficient databases to hold information gathered from these tests, it therefore must be repeated, and this costs money as well as the lives of millions of innocent animals. They have the capability to feel just we humans do, and we as humans should strive to be humane. When you take a baby cow from its mother,that mother cow is going to morn and feel sad. Even worse, if you were to perform live surgery on that animal and drip poison into eyes all day ,well then that animal is going to feel pain. The truth is that Vivisection wastes money and lives that could otherwise be spared.

The average American consumes 120 pounds of beef each year. Our carnivorous needs must also be condoned. To meet this enormous demand, Western Civilization has developed the ultimate killing machine to feed the hungry masses. Its called the slaughter-house”(Faces of Death). I have seen a cows head placed inside a metal face cage. After the cage is locked the cows throat is then cut and the animal is left to bleed to death. This method is known as Koshering. It only makes up a small percent of the killing of animals because it is not in high demand.

The process requires that the animal bleeds to death as a cleansing process. “The cow chokes on his own blood. I could only feel pity” (Faces of Death). This institutionalized form of cruelty is also known as Factory Farming and is fueled by Americas fast food culture. Other supporters of the consumption of meat are religion, culture, and history. Animal agriculture is commonly being replaced by corporate farming. “More than 90% of farmed animals in the US are raised in these intensive confinement systems.

The intensive systems are promoted and defended as necessary for the production of low-cost meat”(Why Vegan? . To receive a greater total in net production, animals are often overcrowded to the point where the animals die. Take a look in the agriculture magazine NATIONAL HOG FARMER. In the November 93 edition there is an article entitled “Overcrowding Pigs Pay”. This title alone tells you how the economics involved in this form of death, obviously out weighs the compassion one might otherwise possess. Dr. Bernard Rollin states ….. that is, “more economically efficient to put a greater number of birds into each cage, accepting lower productivity per bird but greater productivity per cage… dividual animals produce, for example gain weight, in part because they are immobile, yet suffer because of the inability to move… Chickens are cheap, cages are expensive”(Why Vegan? 2)

Animals are usually locked up in buildings with no windows crowed with hundreds to tens of thousands of other animals. They are also subject to extreme weather conditions, such as extreme heat and extreme cold. Animals have been genetically mutated to become higher yielding products. These murders use methods like gene splicing, and selective breeding. There are also hormones administrated as well as unnatural feeding schedules.

It is truly repugnant to think of the effects of genetic mutation on animals. I have seen cows with breasts unnaturally huge to carry more milk. “Unnaturally large amounts of flesh cause the animal to suffer joint inflammation and pain that is aggravated by the concrete, slatted metal, or wire mesh floors”(Why Vegan? 2). If thats not enough animals are harmed a number of other ways in slaughterhouses. Like castration, which involves cutting the animals testicles off with a knife, with no anesthetic for economic purposes. Not to mention the number of times a cow is branded with third degree burns.

The methods of death are largely abundant, in fact so that one could write a book and call it the “101 Ways Animals Die in the Slaughterhouse”. If animals dont die from disease first, then they have to first be transported to a corporate farm. The transportation process is like the slave-ships from Africa, in the fact that for economical reasons the animals are overcrowded and left to live in each others excrement. There are diseases such as shipping fever that often take the lives of many animals involved in the transportation process. The weather can be a largely overlooked method of death for these innocent animals.

Because chickens lose feathers in rough living conditions, transport in freezing weather results in frozen body parts, causing severe pain”(Why Vegan? 5). Many animals are frozen in place by their own manure. The trauma inflicted from such joyrides to the slaughterhouse have produced “downers”. Downers are animals that are too weak and sick to function. Even when electrocuted and beaten, the animal refuses to go on. “Approximately 350,000 dairy cows are downers each year”(Why Vegan? 5) Animals that are downers are often beaten and dragged by chains still alive to the “deadpile”.

Another form of death comes from a practice called captive bolt head stunning. A device that resembles somewhat of a pistol is aimed at the animals head. A metal rod is shot into the brain, often times missing the point of unconsciousness and therefore must be repeated. Remember that shooting a struggling animal can be difficult and require a sufficient amount of practice. Next we come to Electric head stunning, when an electric stunner is used to give the animal a seizure. After the animal is shocked where it is often not unconsciousness and still susceptible to feeling pain, the animals throat is cut.

Animals can regain consciousness after a second. Some animals even undergo the skinning process still alive. Farming has become the number one threat to our nations animals. Some common arguments for the beef industry would be the all classic, meat is good for you. It is supposed to contain vitamins and minerals that are not otherwise found. However, this argument is not true, it is a fact that vegetarians and vegans have a far healthier diet than a meat eater. Michael Klaper, MD has stated that, “The human body has no more need for cows milk than it does for dogs milk, horses milk, or giraffes milk”(Why Vegan? .

In fact plant foods have been known to protect the body from cancer. Animal foods like meat, can raise the risk for cancer because of the compounds found in it. Vegetarians dont have to worry about heart disease associated with saturated fat from red meat. Another common argument is that it has been going on forever, since primitive man. Are we not intelligent and rational beings, arent we no longer primitive? What if the slaughter house had glass walls and was connected to your favorite restaurant. Would you want to pick the animal of your choice and then watch it be murdered?

Would that hamburger taste as good? “Slaughterhouses should be in restaurants and grocery stores. They should have a glass wall so that people must see the animal they choose. Look into that animals eyes and say , “OK, slit his throat” (Why Vegan? 5). Are these animals ours to enslave and murder, or are they Gods creatures? It all boils down to oppressive power structures and the way that they are designed. Oppressive power structures are institutions of thought created to oppress the weaker race, ethnicity, gender, and species.

The struggle for Animal Rights and the issues involved are no different than the struggle for womens rights. They are both used as biological machines, one confined to a life of reproduction and domesticity, and the other confined to life of torture and death. People, often times, argue that humans are smarter than animals so it doesnt matter. If we are so smart , than cant we realize that Vivisection and the Meat industry are wrong? If you enslave and mistreat your animal youre probably going to do the same thing to your child. It all comes back to morals.

Speciesism is the belief that our society is the only one worthy of ethical consideration. This promotes the idea that those who are weaker and indifferent are to be exploited because we can do so. “All arguments to prove mans superiority cannot shatter this hard fact: in suffering, the animals are our equals”(Why Vegan? 14). If we allow humans to live, then why not animals? There are a number of things one can do to help fight against the atrocities discussed in this paper. The first and most crucial thing that should be done is going Vegetarian.

Which is the process of not eating meat, for more information you can check out this veggie page, http://www. veg. org/veg/. Then there is the practice of Veganism which is the denial of all animal byproducts like milk, eggs, etc. For more information of Veganism one could consult the informative website located at, www. veganoutreach. org/. Another thing to do would be to check out PETA, by writing to them at People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals, P. O. Box 42516, Washington, DC 20015. You can also check out the American Anti-Vivisection Society web page at http://www. aavs. org.

For a list of animal safe products one can consult this informative website, www. allforanimals/cruelfree. html. Without participating in the movement for Animal Rights can we really call ourselves animal lovers? When you consume animal products with the information given in this text can you really say that you love your animals? This paper was written in loving memory of my dog BoBo, and is dedicated to the billions dead and to the progress of the Animal Rights movement as a whole. With the facts presented in this paper it can only be said that we as Americans obviously dont love animals as much as we claim too.

Animal Rights Paper

Every year an estimated 25-35 million animals are subjected to painful and cruel testing in laboratory experiments. These experiments are performed to better the health of human beings by means of research. Many of these non-human animals are put through tests that you would not wish on your worst enemy. Many wonder if the means justify the ends in these particular experiments. Controversy occurs when there is a perception that the animals being used in the experiments are subjected to cruel, unusual and inhumane treatment.

Proponents of animal testing cite the death and suffering of infants, children and adults due to diseases that still have no effective treatment or cure. If animal testing is morally justified, what are the circumstances that justify it. Should animals have rights? Some philosophers believe sentience is the key to determine the ethical status of animals. If non-human animals should have rights, then how do we determine what rights to give them. We have the right not to suffer.

Why dont animals have the same right? Do all sentient beings deserve rights in relation to their well-being? Dogs cannot realize the importance of voting; therefore, they have no interest in voting. This is why dogs do not have the right to vote. If non-humans suffer just as we do, should they have the same rights we do? From a utilitarian point of view, you might ask the question: is the suffering of these non-human animals out-weighed by the relief that it can bring humans? Many experiments that were performed on animals have been very beneficial for human health.

On the more common side, numbers show that non-human animals are tortured and put through cruel testing with little or no results. Should a non-human animals suffering ever outweigh a humans suffering? In 1792 Mary Wollstonecraft, an early feminist published A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. At the time of this publication, the general population considered her thoughts on womens rights ridiculous. Thomas Taylor, a highly regarded philosopher, rebutted her position by publishing A Vindication of the Rights of Brutes.

In this article, Taylor attempted to convince his readers that it was as absurd to give women equal rights, as it was to give these same rights to dogs, cats and horses. Singer initially defends womens rights by citing the similarities between men and women. He argues the case for equality between men and women. He states women have the right to vote, for instance, because they are just as capable of making rational decisions as men are He then admits that there are obviously some important differences between human and non-human animals, just as there are important differences between men and women.

By setting out that there are also many important differences between men and women such as pregnancy, it is meaningless to support the right of a man to have an abortion. Singer believes that it then follows that every group should be extended basic principles of equality. He does not believe, however that equality means human and non-human animals should have the same rights or be treated the same way. He proposes only that equal consideration be given to both groups. The author advances his idea of equality by comparing and contrasting both human and non-human capacities for suffering and enjoyment.

He believes both groups have a moral and ethical right to consideration. He defends his position by reminding the reader that we extend this consideration to even the most non-functioning and severely retarded individuals in the human species. He asserts that if non-humans have a greater capacity to feel or experience suffering than the most damaged of humans should not we then extend to these non-humans the same consideration given to least sentient of the human species. According to the Oxford Dictionary, racism is defined as the belief in superiority of a particular race.

Peter Singer defines speciesism as the belief in superiority of a particular species. He points out that since we do not separate individuals because of skin color, level of intellect or physical capability it follows that non-human animals that may have these same similarities or differences should be treated with equal consideration afforded human animals. The reasoning behind this is that each classification of species, just as classification of race, has been defined by the human race to more easily research and define different animals.

Although any competent human being should be able to discriminate between these two animals, no one can actually define a single discriminating feature that separates a dog from a cat. Since there is no one distinction between being a cat and being a dog, it can also be said that there is no distinction between being a human and being a dog. Singer concludes that using non-human animals vs. human animals of an equal or greater capacity for suffering is rarely justified. He contends such experiments would be justified if, and only if, a human animal of an equal or lesser capacity would be justifiable.

Just as using gender or race to determine a beings inherent value is not considered justifiable, neither is a beings species acceptable justification in determining its value. Before mammals, there were dinosaurs. Some dinosaurs were carnivores and others were herbivores. The tyrannosaurus for example ate flesh out of necessity. The animals physiology and sheer size dictated its eating habits. Throughout the evolution of life on earth, it is a well-known fact that every species, with the exception of recent man, kills only what is what is necessary for the survival of the species.

This take what you need behavior is pervasive throughout the entire living kingdom. Early man not only instinctively obeyed, but understood and respected this take what you need principle. The morality of animal rights has been demonstrated in even the most primitive and uncivilized cultures. Only since Christianity introduced the divine creation theory has man assumed a superior moral worth over non-human animals. From our earliest records of pre-historic man up to modern day tribal cultures mans reverence and respect for animals has been documented.

From the simplest and most primitive depictions of life found on the walls of caves and as artifacts we are led to believe that these early people understood, valued and respected the role of non-human animals. These cultures recognized these non-human animals for their contribution to the survival of the entire animal kingdom. The modern tribal cultures that still exist today have helped us better understand this philosophy of life. Some modern Native Americans still preserve this value and respect for the animals, with good reason, these animals are what have given them life for thousands of years.

It has been a necessity for man to use animals for food and clothing until the industrialization of man. The ancient Greeks were probably the first culture to consider themselves as morally superior beings. Not only did they believe that they could use non-human animals as they pleased but they also believed their superiority extended over any form of life, human and non-human. This perspective and belief in the intrinsic superiority of Western European culture gradually spread through the civilized world.

It has been widely accepted that this devaluation of some human life and all non-human life had its genesis in early Christianity. Divine Creation theory stated that man was created separate from and morally superior to animals. It was because of the introduction of this philosophy that the take what you need mentality gradually drifted into a take what you want mentality. As man began to take what he wanted, as opposed to only taking what he needed, he started to depend on these previously unnecessary items.

Since man depended on things such as transportation, electricity, indoor pluming and other conveniences they needed to be more plentiful. This period epitomized mans disregard and contempt towards both human and non-human life. As mans insatiable appetite for more grew, his moral respect for even human life eroded further. Slavery, child labor, the denegration of women and the expendability of human life in the factories and coalmines all contributed to this erosion of the value of life. A natural outcome of this devaluation was to further lessen and separate non-human life from man.

In 1776, Thomas Jefferson, wrote that all men are created into the American Declaration of independence. Although all Americans were supposed to have believed in and obeyed the extremely strong statement, few really did. Jefferson himself kept slaves after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. It was not until after the Civil War that slavery was abolished, and even then, people of other races and the female gender still were not given equal rights. It was only in the middle of the twentieth century that segregation ended and the principle of all men are created equal was legally recognized.

Now in the beginning of the twenty-first century, I move that we begin to look at the lifestyle of animals not differently, but as we did before this whole industrial revolution, because they have been able to survive millions of years longer than modern man without harming our earth. In the last one-hundred years man has begun to destroy the earth with his automobile transportation, coal powered power plants and over indulgence in almost everything that he desires. Non-human animals have always only taken what they needed. Now with our technological revolution, many great things have been invented and discovered.

With all of our technology and understanding of the human body, some of the things that we use today can be eliminated, because we do not need them anymore. One, the slaughter and consumption of millions of pounds of meat such as cows, pigs, chickens, etc. are not necessary anymore. Man, before and during the beginning of the industrialization of the planet, needed to take non-human animal life to survive. Man no longer needs to do this to survive. Humans have begun this advancement in medicine, which may or may not be best for the human species itself.

Charles Darwin originated the theory of natural selection. His theory basically states only the strong shall survive, man has began to toy with natural selection by finding cures for diseases such as cancer, malaria, polio, etc. By doing this man keeps the weak alive, it is not stated that all humans are valued by how much money they have to buy life, but that they are created equal and are entitled to the same treatment regardless of the cost in money. All sentient life is entitled to be treated equally just as it was before this revolution; man and animal used to be at one with each other.

Man knows that killing in excess is unnecessary and can only bring harm to life as a whole. Man created this idea of speciesism and only man can eliminate this idea. Animal testing should only be considered justifiable if the same test would be morally permissible if performed on a human of equal ability. As human animals and non-human animals both travel into the twenty-first century man seems to question increasingly the actual separation between the difference in moral worth of non-human animal and he himself should reinstate this take what you need principle, because animals do suffer just as we do.

Animal Rights Protests: Is Radical Chic Still In Style

Over the past fifteen years a powerfully charged drama has unfolded in New York’s Broadway venues and spread to the opera houses and ballet productions of major cities across the country. Its characters include angry college students, aging rock stars, flamboyant B-movie queens, society matrons, and sophisticated fashion designers. You can’t buy tickets for this production, but you might catch a glimpse of it while driving in Bethesda on particular Saturday afternoons. If you’re lucky, Compassion Over Killing (COK), an animal rights civil disobedience group, will be picketing Miller’s Furs, their enemy in the fight against ur.

These impassioned activists see the fur trade as nothing less than wholesale, commercialized murder, and will go to great lengths to get their point across. Such enthusiasm may do them in, as COK’s often divisive rhetoric and tacit endorsement of vandalism threaten to alienate the very people it needs to reach in order to be successful. The animal rights idealogy crystallized with the publication of philosophy professor’s exploration of the way humans use and abuse other animals.

Animal Liberation argued that animals have an intrinsic worth in themselves and deserve to exist on their own terms, not just as means o human ends. By 1985, ten years after Peter Singer’s watershed treatise was first published, dozens of animal rights groups had sprung up and were starting to savor their first successes. In 1994 Paul Shapiro, then a student at Georgetown Day School, didn’t feel these non-profits were agitating aggressively enough for the cause. He founded Compassion Over Killing to mobilize animal rights activists in the Washington metropolitan area and “throw animal exploiters out of business. Since then, COK has expanded to over 300 members with chapters across the country, including one at American University, which ormed in the fall of 1996.

COK organizes protests as a primary activity of the group, although some chapters may choose to expand into other areas if they wish. COK’s focus on direct-action protests and demonstrations is just one way that the animal rights movement has mobilized to end the fur trade. The larger animal rights organizations have conducted attention grabbing media blitzes with the help of stars like Paul McCartney, Melissa Etheridge, Rikki Lake, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington.

Lobbying efforts by animal advocacy groups have resulted in trapping restrictions in numerous states and an end to federal fur industry ubsidies. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has persuaded several fashion designers including Calvin Klein and Donna Karan to stop using fur in their clothing lines. In addition, anti-fur concerts, videos, compact discs, t-shirts, drag revues and award ceremonies have been used by animal rights groups to advance their cause. Each side of the conflict over fur coats has an entirely different way of conceptualizing and talking about the issue.

Animal rights groups bluntly describe fur as “dead… animal parts” and emphasize that animals are killed to produce a fur garment. Those involved in the ur industry consistently use agricultural metaphors and talk of a yearly “crop of fur” that must be “harvested. ” Manny Miller, the owner of Miller’s Furs, refused to describe his business in terms of the individual animals; “I don’t sell animals. I sell finished products. I sell fur coats. ” These linguistic differences extend to the manner in which both sides frame the debate over fur.

COK refers to the industry in criminal terms; fur is directly equated with murder and those involved in the industry are labeled killers. Industry groups like the Fur Information Council of America (FICA) always describes fur garments as bjects and clothing; it is “the ultimate cold weather fabric” that is “your fashion choice. ” On Saturday, April 12th, Compassion Over Killing demonstrated outside the White House, protesting the Clinton administration’s opposition to a European Community ban on the importation of fur coats made from animals caught in the wild.

In addition, the demonstration called for the release of several Animal Liberation Front (ALF) members imprisoned for vandalizing property and liberating animals from research labs and factory farms. Several dozen high school and college students turned out for the event, but the protest attracted a handful of hirtysomethings and an elderly woman as well. Most of the young people there seemed to dress in a similar style; baggy pants, piercings and t-shirts advertising obscure “hard-core” rock bands adorned most of the activists. The organizers of the protest provided more than enough signs for everyone to carry.

Each sign had a slogan stenciled on the cardboard in boxy black letters, including “Abolish the Fur Trade,” “Fur is Murder,” “Stop Promoting Vanity and Death,” and “Fur is Dead- Get It In Your Head. ” Some of the signs displayed graphic photographs of skinned animal carcasses. In contrast to the dramatic messages they carried, most of the activists were subdued as they slowly trudged in a circle. The inclement weather seemed to dampen their spirits a bit, as for most of the three hour protest it alternated between drizzle and half-hearted rain showers.

The few passersby seemed intent on getting through the rain, and quickly walked past while giving the protesters wide berth. In periods when the precipitation was less intense, the majority of people passed by with expressions of studied indifference or disgust and seemed to have a visceral reaction to the bloody, explicit posters. It is not necessarily bad to show people what you are against; no one in COK likes to look at those photographs. At the same time, it’s important to try to reach people at a level where your message can resonate.

Using words like “murder” may attract attention, but it has just as much potential to turn people off. The fur industry is trying its hardest to paint groups like COK as a radical fringe; one FICA press release said, “the more bizarre the activists look, the better we look — and what they had outside were freaks. ” COK’s choice of words might just be playing right into the other side’s hands. Environmentalists would appear to be natural allies of animal rights groups; after all, they both profess concern for the Earth’s varied inhabitants and passionately organize to protect other-than-human species.

But while animal advocates generally call themselves environmentalists, the reverse is not true. Jim Motavalli writes that “environmentalists tend to see the animal movement as hysterical, shrill and one note. ‘ They’re often embarrassed by the lab raids, the emotional picketing and the high-pitched hyperbole. ” If the rhetoric of groups like COK alienates groups with a natural affinity for animal ssues, how can it change the mind of a 55 year old wealthy white woman who’s always loved the look and feel of a fur coat?

Although the White House simply stood silently in response to COK’s sidewalk activities, the scene was quite different when Compassion Over Killing picketed Miller’s Furs in early April. Slightly less people turned out, but the makeup of the crowd was similar to the one at the Pennsylvania Avenue protest; many of the faces were the same at both events. However, a certain contrast was clear; this protest was targeting a finite business operation, while the White House emonstration seemed to address the entire United States legal system as well as foreign policy.

COK’s call for the release of ALF members convicted of various felonies had an air of futility about it, as the activists claimed the right to break all sorts of U. S. laws in the name of their cause. The Miller’s Fur protest was more of an even fight. This time the activists seemed more powerful, as if they were in reach of their goal to close down the Bethesda fur salon. Their signs had a few more incendiary phrases than those at the presidential protest; “Boycott Murder- Don’t Buy Fur” and “Stop the Killers Boycott Miller’s” appeared n addition to those used at the White House protest.

The activists excitedly talked about a recent ALF action; the underground group had recently spray painted animal right slogans over Miller’s windows and canopy. As they circled the group broke into chants directed by COK leaders, which seemed to add energy to the protester’s message. Passing cars beeped their horns as their drivers waved in support, in contrast to the tepid response from the pedestrian traffic at the protest downtown. However, with one or two exceptions those who passed by the fur protest on foot in Bethesda seemed to be just as hostile as those in D. C.

Some speculate that the entire concept of a fur salon picket is faulty, that COK just angers “people when [they] say, don’t buy fur! ‘and makes them want to go and do it. ” The women that dared to cross Miller’s threshold attracted every protester’s attention, as they shouted “Shame! Shame! Shame! ” in unison. As one customer left the store loud voices yelled out, “That’s Disgusting! “, “Shame! “, “How’d They Get The Blood Out Of Your Coat? ” and other slogans which were drowned out by others’ hissing and boos. The effect was very much like that of an angry mob; tension and vitriolic nergy filled the air.

This atmosphere may release pent up emotion, and discourage people from buying fur in the short term, although in the long term it runs the risk of damaging the animal rights cause. A recent survey revealed that an overwhelming majority of Americans strongly disapprove “of protesting fur coats in a harassing manner. ” Animal advocates certainly don’t need their tactics compared to radical pro-life groups that make abortion clinics warzones. As all the activity unfolded outside their door Miller’s Furs taped a small sign to their window that read “Medical Research Saves Lives.

This seemed off-topic at first glance, but after visiting the FICA web site and reading other pro-fur literature, it was apparent that the sign was part of a pattern. The fur industry initially ignored criticism from animal rights groups and relied on their product’s glamorous image to state their case. As the column inches devoted to the animal rights movement’s allegations of cruelty began to accumulate and sales began to drop; the industry’s strategy shifted. Fur companies began to try to draw attention away from themselves by pointing out the most controversial parts of the animal rights agenda to the mainstream ociety.

Arguably the animal rights issue with the least amount of public support is medical animal testing. Although this topic divides the animal rights community, many of the movement’s leaders favor total abolition of any testing on animals. The fur industry is only too happy to point this out to anyone who’ll listen. Compassion Over Killing and other animal rights groups are actively trying to change the social “rules” that prevail in this country. While in the short term they may not be advocating a ban on fur coats, COK’s protests are aimed at making it socially unacceptable to ear fur.

This effort has shown signs of succeeding, as fur sales have fallen almost 50% below their peak volume in 1987. However, they have begun to creep upwards again in recent quarters. As with every social movement, animal advocacy groups need to pause and reevaluate their public relations strategies. Perhaps it’s time for organizations like Compassion Over Killing to cut back on their use of emotionally charged phrases and tacit endorsement of felonious acts a la ALF. Without considering these issues, COK runs the risk of marginalizing the group and losing its battle against fur.

The Slaughter of America’s Horses

Any one who has wanted to travel to Europe or Asia, or go on a cross-country trip should follow along with one of many horses at local auctions. Thats right, the symbols of the Wild West get to travel where most Americans will never go in their lifetime. However, its recommended that traveling and housing accommodation be booked separated from the horses. One morning they get on a trailer, a week or two later they are on plates as delicacies in other countries.

For years the slaughter of horses has been a highly profitable, low guided practice and what takes place from the time killer-buyers get hold of them, to the time they become another dish, has been kept from the public. Horses are inhumanely transported and held, for no other reason than enjoyment of those in other countries. What can be done to end this violation of animal rights, and why has it been allowed until now? These are the questions racing through avid horse fans’ minds. Exposed to the eyes of the people is the slaughter of pregnant mares, foals, potential pets, and young but not-fast-enough racehorses.

The need for explanation and reformation is at hand. Information ripped from the grasps of the unbeknownst is the best tool in this war. It is mandatory, that the atrocious violation of the animals that helped make America what it is today become know to every person. These pets have been there to help get food, carry materials, and take humans to go where they need to go. Nevertheless, more than helpful objects they have become our friends, loyal companions, and the subject of fantasies and never forgotten stories.

A legend would have been lost had famous racehorses such as Eclipse, Flicka, Secretariat, Black Gold and many others been sent to slaughterhouses, all for the sake of taste. It is true that the demand for horsemeat in this country is virtually non-existent, because it has said to be “tough and tasteless. ” (McGraw, 1) However, horsemeat is highly coveted in countries such as Mexico, France, Italy, Belgium, and Holland. (1) The business is booming, and as it grows, so does the interest of the public as to how the horses are treated.

Its estimated by the USDA that 346,000 horse were killed here in 1990 for shipment overseas, and 70,000 more were sent to Canada to be slaughtered (USDA,1) Another startling revolution: from 1986 to 1995 2,500,000 of America’s horses were doomed to that ill fate. However, for the Humane Society and a large portion of the concerned population it is not so much the use of the horse as it is the treatment. (McGraw, 1) For example, the horses are led into auction rings, hair brushed, tails and manes combed, hooves shod and polished.

These are the pets the family has lost funding or interest in, so they are up for sale. The selling owner assumes that the horse is off to a new home where it can be better cared for or where it will get the time, they just did not have for him. In addition, these promising homes sit in the viewers at the auction, checking available money, picking and choosing, and bidding. Also in these crowds of family’s, horse-lovers, and prospectors are killer-buyers. Their lack of emotional attachment to the proud magnificent animals allows them to buy large quantities, barely out-bidding the families.

All so they can make a few hundred dollars profit and indulge the tastes of over charged well-to-do people in other countries. Once a killer-buyer purchases the horse, it is led out of the auction ring, unaware it has just been appointed to a miserable death. The horse waits, as the buyer’s stall is steadily filled with more and more horses, some young, some old, some in their prime of health, and some with fractures and breaks that inflict pain with every step. This is the start of the trouble. Mares, geldings, all types of horses wait in one stall, scared, and uncomfortable: fights start.

Sates Temple Grandin (noted animal behaviorist) “The number-two thing (largest problem) is horse fights. ” (Lehr,1) She was subject to view the many horses, of which had large cuts, knocked out eyes, bite marks, and kick wounds. Horses are then loaded onto a trailer, usually a stock trailer made for hauling animals with no-necks, because they enable the buyer to transport a greater quantity of animals that he will collect on the way to the slaughterhouse. Carolyn Stull, Ph. D. , found that 29. 2% of horses shipped in such trailers had abrasions and lacerations.

Fifty eight percent of these were on the head and face, due to a low second level, which even prevents some horses from standing. This is in contrast to 8% in straight-decked trailers: typical “horse” trailers. (Lehr,1) The cattle trailers allow room for forty to forty five horses, while the straight decked only allows room for thirty-five to forty. During the trailer ride, the bewildered horses go without food or water. These are horses that come from as far as Washington, New York, and Missouri which often are taken to Texas or Canada, the two places where slaughterhouses are most prominent.

They arrive at their “grave” usually early in the morning, before the vacant, looming buildings have even come to life, but the forbidding silence is enough to keep eyes darting, and ears rotating, as the worn and exhausted horses struggle to figure out what’s next. The buyers wait in their cold metallic trucks, catching up on sleep lost in order to get the horses delivered by the appointed date. When the workers of the factories finally arrive, the truck is directing to the cement loading ramps. Out of fear and longing for freedom, the horses stampede off the truck.

Young horses become knocked down and trampled, while others slip down the ramps that are slick with waste. They mill about trying to hide from what they sense is coming. They shake and whinny nervously; UN-fed and dehydrated they struggle to stand. One by one, they are ushered into a single file chute. This aisle leads inside, where they are shocked, and struck with cattle prods. Then the horses are isolated in a small pen, which allows them no room to turn or move. The are struck between they ears on the forehead with a bolt-gun, which drives a four inch bolt into their heads to stun them and render them unconscious.

The first blow does not always succeed in this. Though upon impact the skull shatters, driving bone fragments into the brain. Still alive and sometimes conscious, the once valued animals have their throats slit. The walls then open wider, and a chain pulls the horse up by a back leg, bleeding “clean” as they hang. Later skin is peeled away as the docile animal becomes nothing more than pieces of meat, to be shipped overseas. Hindquarters are cut as steaks and flown immediately to those counties that consume horsemeat.

The rest is generally minced, packaged and sent over by boat. “Are horses primarily recreational companions or ranch work beasts and an occasional meal? ” (McGraw,1) The USDA projects that in this coming year alone 89,000 horses will be subjected to the same treatments and slaughtered. Their predictions for last year were off by a negative four thousand. They also estimate that it will bring in fifty eight million dollars in private revenue. (USDA,1) That means, in this year, around 90,000 horses will suffer for the sake of money.

Remember that the horsemeat does not go to feed the poor who cannot afford food, in-fact it tends to sell for a higher price than filet mignon. Its no wonder the slaughter industry makes an effort to keep the truth tucked away. One of the major facts the companies try to hide is that the horses that go to the slaughter houses generally arent the old ones that don’t have any where to go any more. In honesty, the buyers look for fat and healthy horses, as those bring the most revenue when the pound pays profit. The prime target, ten to twelve year old, well developed quarter horses.

Economist,1) They are young and have double the meat of old and weak horses. Comparing that to the fact that most of the horses that show in the Olympics are around thirteen years old can make most people think twice about taking their horse to sell at the auction. Horses from children’ s summer camps, old riding ponies, and unworked with horses also end up in the slaughterhouses. Another outrage is in the discovery that a large percent of Thoroughbreds, who just are not fast enough for the racetrack, take the long and modern Trail of Tears.

Hollandsworth,1) The horses slaughterhouses buy fall into a lower price ranges. The contractors and killer-buyers want people to believe that the community as a whole makes more off the horses going to the slaughterhouses than it would for the horses to live. This however is false misguided information, the slaughterhouses are primarily foreign owned, they, and a few killer-buyers contractors, and truckers are the ones who benefit from this inhumane treatment. Furthermore, these lesser-cost horses are what “green” or beginner riders need.

They are the tamer, calm trail horses that people getting into the sport require. If these horses sell to good homes they would generate millions of dollars in revenue for state in many ways, feed, tack, veterinarian bills, trailers and vehicle sales. Not only, that, the sale of the less inexpensive non-competitive market to the killer-buyers, virtually wipes out the rest of the horse market. (McGraw,1) Because there are less riders due to less schooling horses means less competitive riders in the long run, and no need for the well bred and trained horses, and as the need drops so does the price.

When the price of these horses drops they to will end up at the slaughterhouse. If the slaughter business continues will also see a loss in horse for trail rides and summer camps, both of which generate money for the state through taxes. On the profit side there is also the fact that horses that are too old and weak and at the end of their line can generate money through the state. One of the common humane ways to put older horse out of their misery is euthanasia. When horses undergo euthanasia, it is true that they may not sell for horsemeat.

They would not make it past USDA inspection for human consumption. Nevertheless, this method of disposing of older horses can generate profit. They can be taken to rendering plants to be used to products such as glue, dog-food, and other such products. (McGraw,1) When these products sell the taxes on them go to the state. Therefore, from the covered points, it seems as though states themselves, should be against horses from their state lines to be sent to slaughter, and they are. A law recently by legislation and the voters of California makes it a crime for horses to sell for human consumption.

This is bringing to life similar ideas in other states. So the owners of slaughterhouses not only are starting to sweat laws on the transportation laws the are starting to see their extinction at hand. It is a public campaign to make sellers more aware of the situation. (Hollandsworth,2) The slaughterhouses went to high measures to deflect this outcome with no avail. They came up with plenty of excuses Which Cathleen Doyle, founder of Save the Horses, referred to as “prepared by those who work for slaughter companies. McGraw,1)

Apparently, thousand of Californians who showed up for the poles also felt the same. California also includes Hollywood, and it is a known fact that actors and actresses, such as Robert Redford have spent over one million dollars on campaigns to make the sale of horses for human consumption a felony. This was the law that passed, Their campaign showed the faces. It seems once the truth is out their, Americans stand by the protection of our symbols of western culture. The animals we have come to see as companion animals.

So if dogs and cats are not slaughtered for meals in other countries, why are horses. (Economist,1) All because the on going battle to have horses legally considered companion animals instead of live stock. The United State Department of Agriculture has been “stingy” (McGraw, 1) to give out any information on horse slaughter. (Economist,1) except to say “Horses are livestock, same as cows and pigs” (McGraw,1) Many people around the country beg to differ. It can probably be agreed by most that horses are owned for recreational purposes, generally not for work any longer.

However, it can be found in the far western states that horses still work dawn to dusk, the long hours of cowboys. Which brings about the point that horses are not raised as cattle, they are not raise in large numbers to be sent off to eat here in the United State. These horses going to slaughter have been raised in an environment with people, they have been trained and cared for and taught to trust people. They have been raised as companion animals not livestock. Therefore, they should not be killed, transported, and sold for consumption as live stock.

The fact that the animals we see as highly regarded symbols in this county are allowed to suffer and be inhumanely slaughtered every day is inconceivable. Horses helped to build our way of life, so is our return of the favor allowing them to fall victim to greed, the greed of a few people who profit off foreign owned slaughterhouses. If you have ever been that horse crazy kid, ever dreamed of riding off into the sunset, then you should know what it means to be a horse person. Being a horse person is not based on whether you own horses, it is in you.

It occurs when the thought of horses running free across an open plain triggers a sense of independence. Horses are a majestic sign of freedom, power, and strength, which is what we have built this country around. Gentles giant with the ability to over power us that have been seen tagging along behind kids at rodeos. The sights of powerful thoroughbreds thundering down the track, the roar in your ears, the breeze as they fly past you. From carriage rides to trail rides, horses are apart of the best pieces of our lives. A moment touched by a horse never becomes a faded memory.

The grace with which a horse prances is like no other, so how can we allow this creature of beauty to befall such a horrible death. This is not a call to run and set fire to the nearest slaughterhouse. All I am asking you to do is realize the problem, consider the solutions and inform others. Horses are not live stock, they are companion animals, that have carried us into war, taken us through the spring time meadows, and been there always in our hearts and imaginations. Horses have a direct place in our pasts and hopefully our futures. Look at all the facts and think about where you stand.

Abuse Of Innocent

Is it right to force a mouse to live it’s live in a laboratory cage to test anti-cancer drug? How would you like to be squeezed in a cage with many other animals, not being able to touch the grass, run around and play, smell the flowers, or go for a walk in the warmth of the sunshine? Animal cruelty is wrong because we are hurting the Innocent. Animals experience and feel pain, fear, anxiety, stress, depression, boredom, joy and happiness. Animals are very intelligent, some ever learn our own language. Most people experience their first bond with an animal.

Not only do they ring a companion and a friend into our lives, but also unconditional love and comfort. Pet shops and puppy mills mass produce, kennels are overcrowded and dirty, with very little nutrition. Cats/dogs are held in metal cages and lead miserable lives breeding continuously. Animals suffer and are neglected, some are sold to research laboratories. A large number of animals are raised for slaughter each year. A cow “has a natural life span of twenty- five to thirty years, but only survives for an average of five”.

An estimated “seventeen million raccoons, beavers, bobcats, lynx, oyotes, muskrats, nutria, and other animals are trapped each year in the United States for fur”. 2 They suffer from unbearable pain for several hours before their lives are ended by the trapper’s club. Is the price of live worth the price of fur? Psalm 104, 27-30. All creatures depend on you to feed them throughout the year: you provide the food they eat, with generous hands you satisfy their hunger. You turn your face away, they suffer. You stop their breath, they die and revert to dust.

You give breath, fresh life begins, you keep renewing the world. Disections have een practiced in biology classes for many years. Critics accuse some teachers of killing and argue that disection teaches nothing but cruelty. Nothing is learned by cutting up an animal that cannot be learned from photographs or drawings. Children do not learn about the human body by killing and disecting a person, they learn from diagrams and textbooks. Vivisection means “cutting alive”. It is a worldwide practice involving millions of animals. Scientists say that vivisections may not necessarily be painful.

Every living being with a brain, spinal column, and central ervous system feels pain. Animals were not created for entertainment. What do zoos really teach children? The animals are stolen from their natural habitats and are brutally transferred. They suffer from boredom and have natural needs such as running, climbing, flying, and natural mating. All of the magic and glitter of the circus hides the true animal cruelty. Several animals are confined to small cages, muzzled, and repeatedly whipped in training. They are declawed, have their teeth removed, and drugged to be obedient.

Military research on animals include onkeys, baboons, rats, guinea pigs, sheep, dogs, cats, rabbits, and mice. “… when I see my closest relative locked in a restraining box, his head filled with electrodes, and all he has got to reach out to you is with his eyes, then how can we respond to that if we close ours? “. 3 Weapons are tested on innocent animals, nerve gas, bullets, and bombs are all used. “One sad insight is gleaned from this statement, made by a Porton workman who lost his bearings: ‘I thought I was ill, I thought I was seeing things. It was a little monkey enclosed In a glass cage.

Its eyes seemed to be falling out and it couldn’t breathe. It was in dreadful, dreadful distress. I forgot everything and went near it and said something to it, and it buried its head in it’s arms and sobbed like a child. I never slept that night, and the next day managed to go back to the same room, but it was nearly finished by then. It had sunk to a little heap at the bottom of the glass cage. ‘. “4 Animal cruelty is wrong, we are hurting the innocent. Cruelty of animals can be stopped, not only do we have to open our eyes, but open our mouths as well.

The Importance of Animal Testing

Research on animals is important in understanding diseases and developing ways to prevent them. The polio vaccine, kidney transplants, and heart surgery techniques have all been developed with the help of animal research. Through increased efforts by the scientific community, effective treatments for diabetes, diphtheria, and other diseases have been developed with animal testing. Animal research has brought a dramatic progress into medicine. With the help of animal research, smallpox has been wiped out worldwide.

Micro-surgery to reattach hearts, lungs, and other transplants are all possible because of animal research. Since the turn of the century, animal research has helped increase our life-span by nearly 28 years. And now, animal research is leading to dramatic progress against AIDS and Alzheimer’s disease. Working with animals in research is necessary. Scientists need to test medical treatments for effectiveness and test new drugs for safety before beginning human testing. Small animals, usually rats, are used to determine the possible side effects of new drugs.

After animal tests have proven the safety of new drugs, patients asked to participate in further studies can be assured that they may fare better, and will not do worse than if they were given standard treatment or no treatment. New surgical techniques first must be carefully developed and tested in living, breathing, whole organ systems with pulmonary and circulatory systems much like ours. The doctors who perform today’s delicate cardiac, ear, eye, pulmonary and brain surgeries, as well as doctors in training, must develop the necessary skills before patients’ lives are entrusted to their care.

Neither computer models, cell cultures, nor artificial substances can simulate flesh, muscle, blood, and organs like the ones in live animals. There is no alternative to animal research. Living systems are complex. The nervous system, blood and brain chemistry, and gland secretions are all interrelated. It is impossible to explore, explain or predict the course of many diseases or the effects of many treatments without observing and testing the entire living system. Cell and tissue cultures, often suggested as “alternatives” to using animals, have been used in medical research for many years. But these are only isolated tests.

And isolated tests will yield only isolated results, which may bear little relation to a whole living system. Scientists do not yet know enough about living systems or diseases, nor does the technology exist, to replicate one on a computer. The information required to build a true computer model in the future will be based on data drawn from today’s animal studies. Primates represent only about 1/3 of 1 percent of animals in research. But during the last half century, research using primates has led to major medical breakthroughs, most notably in the treatment of polio and Rh disease.

Vaccines have reduced the cases of polio in the U. S. from 58,000 to one or two a year at present. Scientists are learning how the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) works by studying its non-human primate counterpart, the Simian Immunodeficiency Virus (SIV) in monkeys. The SIV model is useful in testing drugs for AIDS. In addition, the HIV virus survives in certain kinds of monkeys and although it does not kill the animals, it can be removed from them. This may prove useful in testing an AIDS vaccine. Researchers are studying rhesus macaque monkeys to explore ways to reduce multiple organ failure following hypotensive shock, a loss of blood pressure due to loss of blood.

Researchers have hypothesized that damage to the organs occur within the first few minutes after blood flow is reestablished, when a certain kind of white blood cell attaches to walls of blood vessels and releases toxic substances. The researchers reasoned that if, just before blood flow is reestablished, a substance that prevents the white blood cells from attaching to the vessel walls were injected into the blood stream, it might prevent the release of their toxic contents and avoid multiple organ damage. It is expected that this new technique will prove effective in human patients.

Researchers are studying obesity in monkeys in hopes of finding a way to control body weight. Scientist are also using monkeys to study Taurine deficiency, which causes vision problems, and zinc deficiency, which causes growth retardation among infants and fetuses. Researchers are currently studying to see whether reduced caloric intake can slow the rate of aging. This effect has already been observed in lower animals, and if it holds true in primates, it would be a strong indication that humans might be able to increase their life spans by eating less.

Primates have the same number and relative size of teeth as humans. Macaque monkeys have been studied by dental researchers to link a specific bacterium to the growth of periodontitis, which affects 75 percent of all adults and causes 70 percent of adult tooth loss. A non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drug, flurbiprofen, has been shown to be effective in halting the progression of periodontal disease. Since the 1920s, scientists have studied primates in order to understand their ability to communicate.

They have discovered that chimpanzees and other apes have the ability to learn and use language. Scientists already have applied their findings toward developing a special language for severely mentally retarded children, as well as young adults with little or no linguistic competence, who cannot learn language as normal children do. People should ensure that an end is not put to progress in animal research. Biomedical researchers know that an animal in distress is simply not a good research subject. Researchers are embarked on an effort to alleviate misery, not cause it.

And remember, if we want to defeat the killer diseases that still confront us, such as AIDS and Alzheimer’s, cancer, heart disease, and many others, the misguided fanatics of the animal-rights movement must be stopped. Think about it, it could some day be your life or your children’s. Animals Are Equal “All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others. ” This was the rule established by the pigs that ruled the farmyard in the book Animal Farm. It justified any cruel of unjust treatment the pigs performed on the other “inferior” animals.

This rule illustrates the ethnocentricity and superiority displayed by the pigs toward their fellow farmyard animals. This is the same position that humans take every day in the laboratory toward lower forms of animals. For many years, scientists have been using different animals in the laboratory research. According to one estimate, 65 million animals are used in the laboratory experiments annually in the United States. (Barton p. 30) I acknowledge that at this research has proven beneficial to the development and enhancement of the human race.

However, I do not believe it is fair for this advancement to occur at the cost of many innocent animals, often from unnecessary experimentation. I can not justify or excuse one “animal”, a human being, from torturing and killing another animal. These laboratory animals should have certain rights, and the absence from unnecessary suffering, malnutrition, torture, and abuse are some examples of them. The negative effects of using animals for laboratory research are evident on these tested animals, but the effects are also prevalent in the human race. The devaluation of life by the experimenters can have negative effects on society as a whole.

First, the effects of this unfair testing are most damaging to the animals being tested. One extreme example involved monkeys that were forced to inhale mass quantities of cigarette smoke to test its dangers. These poor monkeys were strapped to a table and were made to wear gas masks that forced this smoke down their throat. After this experiment, it was concluded that the monkeys exposed to the smoke and their respective death rates were positively correlated. This information about the dangers of smoking was already common knowledge to the entire human public. Therefore, why was this gruesome testing condoned?

Was it necessary for innocent animals to suffer and die these horrible deaths for such irrelevant experiments? (Barton, p. 6) Another example of obvious animal suffering and abuse is illustrated in cosmetic safety testing on animals. These experiments have little or no implications for human life or human benefit, and thus should not be performed. One certain procedure, called the Draize test, uses the chemical found in shampoos and tests its irritability on the eyes of rabbits. Although the shampoos are basically harmless if exposed to the human eye, they cause blindness to the rabbits that are tested.

Therefore, not only is the Draize test extremely painful and harmful to the rabbits, but it is used on testing unnecessary substances. Considering this starting evidence, one must wonder why procedures like this remain legal. (Knopf p. 321) Not only is much of animal research harmful to the laboratory animals, but it also has harmful effects on the individuals who conduct the research. Sacrificing animals for scientific research can devalue the importance of life for the scientist conducting the research. This raises serious moral questions about the importance of life.

For example, some might argue that the effects of nuclear energy in the production of the atomic bomb were not adequately studied before dropping the bomb, thereby killing hundreds of thousands of people. It is morally unethical to take a life, whether it is a human being or an animal. As long as something is alive or has life, then it deserves moral consideration, and thus humans are obligated to protect and cherish life whenever it is found. I see no redeeming moral value in using animals for experimentation, many of which are unnecessary, and, in fact, such practice seems immortal.

Therefore, this devaluation of animal life form must be stopped before society totally disregards the value of life as an important moral principle. (Thiroux p. 400) Some individuals resist the fact that animals have inherent value. These people simply cannot defend the narrow position that only humans have such value and not lower animals. Therefore, should we say that only human beings have the requisite intelligence, reason, or autonomy to value their life? To the contrary, there are many humans who fail miserably to meet these standards, and yet they are viewed by society as possessing value beyond their usefulness to others.

In addition, is it true that only humans belong to the correct species, the Homo Sapiens? This view seems to be blatant speciesism and is no more acceptable than racism or sexism. It is sometimes argued that only humans have immortal souls and thus are superior to lower forms of animals. This argument is not only unprovable, but also has its basis on an even more controversial question of who or what has an immortal soul. It is rationally more productive to solve these moral issues without making more controversial assumptions than necessary.

In summary, what could possibly be the basis of humans having more inherent value than the animals they abuse? Could it be that the animals lack intelligence or reason? If so, we would have to make the same judgment concerning deficient humans as well. However, we do not think of a retarded child or a mentally insane person as having less inherent value than a normal individual. Therefore, we can not rationally base the assumption that because humans have intelligence and reasoning, they are justified or excused for killing thousands of animals each year.

We must accept the responsibility for what animal experimentation causes in devaluing the importance of life and all the consequences of it. (Mappes and Zembaty p. 456-57) “The tyranny of human over nonhuman animals has caused and today is still causing an amount of pain and suffering that can only be compared with tyranny by white humans over black humans. ” (Singer p. 17) The importance of conquering this tyranny is as important as any other social or moral issue discussed in recent years. The prejudice exhibited by the speciesist is just as evil as that exhibited by the racist.

If a being suffers, there is no moral justification for refusing to consider its suffering. Regardless of the animal, the principle of equality in a moral society requires that we attempt to reduce its suffering just as we would for a fellow human. If the trends of abusing, torturing, and killing of these animals in laboratory testing continues, its effects could prove detrimental to both the animal population as well as the human race. Society might eventually become totally apathetic to the value and preciousness of life at all levels.

If killing becomes an easy practice either to perform or to accept by the average citizen, then our society is in trouble. This devaluation of our mere existence may reduce our appreciation of being alive and may decrease the importance of not taking a human life. Consequently, the useless killing of animals in laboratory experiments must cease. If not, the effects of such needless slaughter could prove ultimately harmful to both the animal populations involved and the human population as well. The importance of life must be valued at all levels.

Animal Experimentation As playing with your adorable pet dog, named Bailey, a news commercial flashes across the screen about animal experimentation. After the commercial you ponder upon what happens to the thousands of animals that were used for experimental test. Experimental test may help in finding new discoveries, but the physiological problems, death, and deformation of the animals is not right. If it’s not right to do to humans, then it’s not right to do to animals. The physiological problems that occur in the animals that are tested on is not minor, but extreme.

It is true that the research is vital for medical advances which helped provide antibiotics and vaccines, insulin, and advances in the medical technology like blood transfusions, kidney dialysis, and heart lung machines, but what about the animals that are being tested on. The animals go from a stable to a unstable condition, or have a condition far more worse than which they started from. Lets say Mike, the lab mouse, was in good health and could function properly on his own. After a week of testing on his body, Mike could not walk, feed himself, or function properly due to the experimental test performed on his brain.

Mike would have never had to experience the change in his body if he would not have been tested on. Death is another extreme case in animal experimentation. This may determine a flaw in the experimentation which is good for humans, but it ends the life of a innocent animal. Over 3 million animals started out like Mike did, as a healthy mouse. The treatments and test that were performed on their bodies was too much for them to handle causing death, the only non-painful way out. From the time of being healthy, to the experimentation, to death, suffering happens a great deal to these lab animals.

How would you feel being poked at, injected with, or under close observation by a scientific researcher undergoing these unnecessary, painful and lethal animal test? The deformation that occurs in the animals can be helpful in growing ears or limbs to humans, but it doesn’t guarantee that there will be no complications with it. “Medical experiments on animals have caused enormous damage and killed thousands. In the past 20 years thousands of drugs and test, successfully tested on animals have been withdrawn because of dangerous side effects on humans”(Braim 2).

During the time where the animals are experimented on, they go through a lot of suffering. They start out normal and by the end of the testing, they have a new body part(s) attached, like a extra ear or limb. Lab animals have to go through cruel and antiquated testing methods. Are test that are designed to poison, blind, burn, mutate and kill thousands of defenseless animals absolutely necessary and humane? Animal experimentation is cruel to animals. What did they ever do to deserve this treatment?

The animals go through many physiological problems with suffering, then leading to death, or possible deformation. Is it so hard to have alternative test such as human cell culture test and computer models to replace live animals? More than 600 companies use these alternatives to manufacture safe and effective products, but that’s not enough. I feel that animals are equal to us and deserve to be treated fairly. In the future we should abide by the famous quote “Do unto others as you would have done to you. ”

Live Animal Exports Should Not Be Banned!

Good evening ladies and Gentlemen, adjudicator, chairman and fellow debaters. Firstly I would like to rebut the flaws in the opposition’s arguments. Our team strongly believes that the Cormo express has been extremely exaggerated. In fact, feedback from the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service-approved vet on board is that they were in excellent condition and have actually gained body weight since leaving Australia. I also wonder why the Affirmative failed to mention that out of 430 ships that left Australia [in 2003].

We didn’t hear anything about the other 429 and that in my elief is where the whole thing got distorted. Live animal exports are economically important to Australia and the world. Yet this does not mean that we forget the animal’s rights. Throughout this debate our team has stressed to you the need for animal exports and why we rely on it so much. Our first speaker Renee defined the topic and covered issues such as: *The excellent standards aboard transportation ships *Live exports eliminates animal substitution *And the expert care given to animals before they are loaded onto the ship and while they are on it.

Our second speaker Josh continued our case and argued equally important issues such as: *The financial gain *Cultural and industrial beliefs *Benefits of the live animal export industry As we informed you earlier live exports earn $1 billion simply in Australia. This figure means that live exports account for more than a ninth of the livestock sold in Australia each year. If we were to ban live exports in Australia this would jeopardise the lively hood of most of our farmers. As our second speaker Josh stated 20-30 % of a farmer’s income in

Victoria is from live exports, it is even greater interstate. It is obvious this would be the final blow to farmers after they had lost most of their livestock in the draught, now those surviving animals would not be able to be traded. Josh mentioned how most farmers only managed to keep going because they would be able to create income by exporting their livestock overseas. Another point that our team has been certain of is that there is no miss treatment of animals on board ships. Our first speaker Renee discussed procedure and actions taken if animals fall ill.

Renee stated I quote “If he death rate on board a transit vessel carrying sheep is above 2% a formal investigation is automatically conducted”. She also mentioned that each ship transporting live animals is required to have a vet on board. Their roles are to; check the animals’ health daily, draft the animals into pens, put down animals that aren’t coping, conduct post- mortems and ensure crew are tending to animals. As you can see every possible situation has been considered! It should be noted that our team respects the rights and beliefs of Muslim countries to process sheep in the way they believe is right.

Our team also has reminded the opposition that what happens to the sheep once they are delivered does not fall under our jurisdiction, although if there were fears that there was some such wrong doing, a formal inquiry would be launched. Since there is no precedential investigation we can assume that animals exported to the Middle East have been shown no cruelty. In conclusion to our argument, I must say that we rely on this industry greatly in Australia and would we be able to accept the backlash, loss of jobs and income if Live animal exports were band.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

Ever since The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in England in 1824 was formed there has been long running debates on the topic of animal rights. The first societies were formed to protect and maintain human treatment of work animals, such as cattle, horses and house hold pets. Towards the end of the 19th century more organizations were formed, this time to protest the use of animals in scientific experimentation. In today’s society groups such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) have continued these traditional fights as well as adding new agendas.

These new agendas include hunting and fishing, and dissection of animals in science classes. This paper will discuss the pros and cons of animal experimentation and research, animals in the classroom, animal organizations and hunting. Along with these topics my personal opinion will be stated, before and after researching the topic. The rights of animals have always been important to me during my life. This is due to the fact that I have had a dog for a pet for as long as I remember. On this topic I feel as though having domesticated animals in the home is fine as long as proper care is taken of them.

As for more controversial issue like animal research and experimentation my views vary. A few years ago I felt that any research or experimentation on animals was inhumane and unjust. However after maturing and becoming more aware of the world, I now feel as though there are definite goods’ that come from animal research that can not come from doing tests on humans. This view is by no means one sided. I also feel that there are some things being done to animals that just should not happen, such as the testing of cosmetics.

In other areas of animal rights like dissection in the lassroom I think that as long as the animals died naturally it is fine to use them to further a students education along with human cadavers. Of course, I hope that animal dissection can become a thing of the past with the advent of new technologies. On the topic of hunting I have had a first hand experience. The deer population where I live grew out of control a few years ago and as a last resort the town decided to have a hunt.

It was very controlled safe and had a limit as to how many deer were killed. This sort of animal control is extreme and in my opinion should be avoided at all costs. However, the overpopulation of eer was causing health risks to the town, like a spread of lymes disease, which made hunting a necessity. The rights of animals are watched out for by organizations dating back to the early 1800’s. This, I feel is an important step in protecting animals as long as they protest within there legal rights.

In order to sum my opinion up animals do have certain rights but if experiments, research, hunting and dissection provide positive increases in knowledge that furthers the existence of the world it is a necessary thing that must be done. Perhaps the biggest and most debated subject dealing with the rights of nimals is the use of them in research and experimentation. “Very few people would object to the use of animals if human lives were saved as a consequence. ” (Minkoff, 26) However the extremists who do object would do so on a few key points.

Firstly, animals which are used are subjected to in humane treatment. This consists of tests such as the LD50, which entails giving an animal a lethal dose of a chemical or drug until 50% of them die. Also, experimenters are subjecting them to wound experiments, radiation experiments and studies on the effects of chemical warfare. (PETA, 2) Organizations such as PETA are also pposed to cosmetic testing on animals due to experimenters spraying, injecting, and feeding cosmetics to animals which cause labored breathing, blindness and death in some cases.

These organizations argue that cosmetics have already been tested on animals in the past why continue doing the same tests. Due to the protests of The Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing in 1981, Avon and Revlon have stopped using animals in their research. (Comptons, CD) Experiments and research on animals such as the LD50 test and cosmetic tests are, according to animal rights organizations cruel and inhumane towards animals. They believe that animals have rights and they are just as important to society as humans are, therefore if humans are not used for these experiments then animals shouldn’t either.

Despite these objections for experimenting on animals there are positive results that come from it. Research on animals is important in understanding diseases and developing ways to prevent them. The polio vaccine, kidney transplants, and heart surgery techniques have all been developed with the help of animal research. Through increased efforts by the scientific community, effective treatments for diabetes, iphtheria, and other diseases have been developed with animal testing. (Bioethics, 148) There are many reasons given for it to be necessary to work with animals in research.

First scientists must be able to test medical treatments for effectiveness and drugs for their toxicity before being tested on humans. Also new surgical techniques before being used on humans must be tested on living things with circulatory and pulmonary systems like ours. No “computer models, cell cultures, nor artificial substances can simulate flesh, muscle blood, bones and organs. “(Ampef, 2) If considered carefully there is no lternative to animal research. It is impossible to explain or predict the course of many diseases without observing the effects of it on the entire living system.

In the classroom, it is argued, dissections must go on in order to further our knowledge. But, what about computer programs like the virtual frog? The answer to this is simply that even with today’s technologies these kind of computer programs are not sophisticated enough to reproduce a living organism. In researching the topic of animal rights my eyes have been opened to various different reasons to support and not to support animal rights. After erious consideration of both sides of the argument, my opinion is that animals should be used in research and experiments, excluding cosmetic experiments.

In my opinion this type of animal use is fine as long as it results in positively advancing the human race. Despite this point of view I also believe this research must produce these results in a humane manner. Animals do have rights and should not be used for unnecessary things such as hunting which is purely taking advantage of animals because they can not defend themselves and no good comes from this sport. The only exception to this was stated earlier in which unting was used as a last resort to curb a possible health threat.

Finally my hope for the use of animals in the classroom is that someday there will be enough technological advances for computer programs that will enable them to simulate a real animal. This actually goes for all animal testing, if we could simulate an animal or human, on a computer we would not have to subject anyone to testing. Animals do have the right not to treated inhumanely whether it be in the home, laboratory, classroom or field, yet as long as animals are being used to help benefit the world, animals in my opinion can be used in some respects.

Aggression, A Critical Part Of Animal Existence

Aggression is a critical part of animal existence, which is an inherent driving force to humans, as we, too, are animals. The source of aggression within humans is a long summative list, but before trying to understand its source one must apply a working definition of aggression. Aggressive behavior is defined by Encyclopedia Britannica as any action of an animal that serves to injure an opponent or prey animal or to cause an opponent to retreat. (7) David G. Myers states that aggression is any physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt or destroy.

There are many types of aggressive behaviors, which can be differentiated from the factual act to the hidden motives. For example, an aggressive behavior can be negative or positive, accidental or intended, and physical or mental. Aggression can take numerous forms, the act of hitting a wall to release aggression has some of the same roots as playing football and enjoying hitting the quarterback. A child yelling at his parents could be equated, in its aggressiveness, with hitting ones horn when one is cut off on 495.

Aggression is also a relative construct. What might seem like a terribly aggressive act to one person, most often the victim, might seem like an induced response to the perpetrator. (3) Psychologist Arlene Stillwell performed an experiment where she assigned ordinary college students at random to play the role of a victim or a perpetrator in a small incident. Then she asked the students to describe the situation that had just transpired. What she found was that both victims and perpetrators deformed the truth equally to present their sides in a better light.

Victims would dwell on their lasting traumas from the incident while the perpetrator might make the act seem like a one-time action provoked by insurmountable circumstances. The resulting implication is that aggression is in the eye of the beholder. (3) Due to its relative nature aggression is extremely hard to isolate and study. Some acts are very easy to categorize as aggressive, a first degree murder or first degree rape, but is negligent manslaughter aggressive?

The mere act of not shoveling ones sidewalk might have the same effect as a cold-blooded murder but is it an aggressive act? For the purposes of this paper aggression will be related to the four conditions presented by Gerda Siann.

They are as follows; 1. The person carrying out that behavior, the aggressor, does so with intention. 2. The behavior is taking place within an interpersonal situation which is characterized by an accumulated distress or a opposition. 3. The aggressor intends by the behavior in question to gain a greater advantage than the person on the other side of the aggression. 4. The aggressor carrying out the behavior has either provoked the situation or moved the conflict unto a higher degree of strength. (11)

Aggression has numerous reasons and consequences both must be analyzed in order to see from whence it arises. An explicit example of the strength of both nature and nurture concerning aggression is the life of Kody Scott, a young gang member of California.

He was already a gang member in middle school, and would not have been had the gang not already been in place when he graduated from elementary school thus environments role in aggressive behavior, but one fateful day when he stole a car to get to the hospital for the birth of his first child, he intentionally detoured through the neighborhood of a rival gang and killed a rival gang member. The detour he deliberately took was a conscious decision and not provoked by the environment hence natures toll on his aggressive act. (3)

Aggression is usually associated with negative aspects of the world. (3) This is not necessarily true, though. Negativity is but half of the nature of aggression. Aggression can have very positive results. For example, a non-aggressive hockey player gets thrown around and will therefore not perform very well in an bellicose sport. On the other hand an aggressive player will not allow himself to be thrown around like the aforementioned player and will most likely win the small battles just based on the mentality of the player.

Another example of positive aspects of aggression might be a persons sexual aggressiveness might allow them to obtain a date to prom without any problem, whereas anyone much less aggressive person would be passive and wait for the person to approach them. One good aspects of aggressiveness might be ambitiousness or assertiveness, an aggressive person is more likely to get what they need done as opposed to the inactive person. Outgoing, a socially positive trait is nothing more than aggressiveness personified.

A female high school senior might be more successful and be rewarded (by being voted for Best Personality in the MOCK awards) for being socially aggressive outgoing. Aggression can also be characterized by mentality. Where one hurts someone out of rage or whether one thinks of numerous ways of hurting someone, aggression still is present in both situations. The thoughts of a people, for example the Germans in World War Two can be just as aggressive as the act as the systematic murder of the Jewish community. (8) Aggression in this case was an extreme example of a spiraling staircase.

The Nazi party did not begin a process of systematic murder at the beginning of their rule, first they instituted a hate as scapegoats toward the Jews, they then removed some luxuries that the Jews had, then they removed citizenship, followed by imprisonment, then to slave labor, and lastly the “Final Solution” was implemented. The thoughts of hatred at the beginning of the platform was just as dangerous and aggressive as the gas chambers of late WWII.

These aggressive feelings allowed the Germans to desensitize each other to a point of genocide. 1) By solely disliking someone they looked the other way when the book burning began, then it was just a small step to the first pogrom, then they just accepted the de-humanization of Jews, and this was followed by an escalating progress which led eventually to the inhumane murder of close to six million human lives. Along with these pure feelings of anger and hatred aggressionthe Germans also tried to scapegoat and thereby provide catharsis for themselves by blaming the downfall of their troubles on the Jewish community.

This displacement somehow released pent up rage that had been present for numerous years of misery for the Germans. (3, Handler) Thus thoughts also cause aggression or are manifestations of the pure aggression. The most obvious example of aggression is killing, for that reason the example for this paper will be the untimely death of people as caused by others. From very young ages death permeates into all of our lives. From having a loved grandparents passing away to the learning how to read the newspaper and reading about terrible deaths daily, if not more often.

One strong argument supports that people have built-in aggression. Much like the theories of Freud, that people have instinctual aggression, whether sexual or violent, a multitude of scientists and psychologists believe that biology is crucial in the development of aggression. (9) For example aggression has been correlated numerous times in a significant way with testosterone. (1) One psychologist, Jack Hokanson, has tracked catharsis theories for a number of years.

One experiment performed by this man seemed to point that in order to reduce violence or aggression men would react angrily, whereas women would react in a friendly manner when presented with aggressive behaviors. (2) The variable that was tested here were the differences in the genders which proved to be quite polar, for the men were belligerent and the women were almost uniformly kind. (12) Differences in physical strength also have provided for differences in aggression levels between the two sexes.

Since men are physically built stronger than women they are more likely to become aggressive than are women who are not, in general, as physically strong. Neurotransmitters seem to play a very important part in the aggressive nature of mammals. As tested in monkeys, who have matching 99 percent of their genes with humans, it has been found that hyper-aggressive or antisocial monkeys have a deficit of the neurotransmitter serotonin.

As an interesting side note the leaders, who have a different type of aggression assertionhave higher levels of this same chemical. ) In this same study the monkeys seemed to have very predictable heredity patterns, In which the monkeys were found to easily exhibit the same behavior as the father. This was also found to be true “in men who have been discharged from the Marines for excessive violence, as well as in criminals in Finland who committed acts of wanton violence. “(8) Seratonin has also found to be an inhibiting factor concerning aggression. A situation or condition that reduces seratonin levels is among drugs, hypoglycemia.

Hypoglycemia is a condition of lowered blood sugar, certain diets can cause or inhibit the onset of this condition, thus directly affecting genetically the aggressive behavior of a person. (12) On the topic of diets an correlation has been found with the corn (a food that decreases the levels of seratonin in the brain) intake of a country and the homicide rates, an obviously aggressive marker. (10) Another chemical in the human machine that causes or has been related to has been the “anger hormone” adrenaline and its counterpart noradrenaline.

This is inherent in the flight or fight reflex, in which fighting is usually prepared by a flush of adrenaline into the system, and anger/aggression are integral parts of it. (12) Stanley Hall found that anger has numerous different effects on the human body, depending on the person. Aggression can cause either an increase or a decrease in heart rate depending on the anger causing stimulus. (12) For example, a psychologist named Albert F. Ax found that his test subjects were experiencing the slowing of their hearts because they were concentrating too hard on the event supposed to turn them aggressive, in the case of his experiment a mugger. 2)

Another study done by a man named Eron in 1987, showed that most children, who when described by their peers as having high levels of aggression, are three times as likely to have a criminal conviction by the age of 30 than those children who were rated as having high levels of pro-social behavior. (10) That study shows the apparent stability, or lack of change, in the behavior of people thereby fueling the genetic, or nature, side of the nature versus nurture war that is currently being fought. Epilepsy has also been affiliated with aggressive behavior or at least with outbursts of it.

A very strong correlation has been made between the focus of epileptic discharges being in the temporal lobe of the brain and discharges of violent and aggressive behavior. (1) That condition can be helped by psychosurgery but is not used as common as possible because the biological age group who most is affected by this circumstance are juveniles or violent offenders who are not capable of giving unbiased, informed consent to irreversible procedures. Furthermore, evidence liking antisocial conductaggressionwith abnormal electrical activity in the temporal lobes.

Using a electroencephalogram (EEG) to study these waves of electricity in the temporal lobe of sufferers of a sociopath complex, psychologists have surmised that the aggressive personality disorders are related to a delay of maturation in these areas of the brain, this could be cause by a innumerable amount of factors like fetal infection, brain trauma, or lack of proper nutrients in diet. (1) In 1969 a psychologist by the name of Williams used an EEG on 333 men convicted of crimes and found that out of the 206 men who had a history of crimes has a disruption, or dysrhythmias, in the temporal lobes.

Following the genetic track of aggression is the undeniable fact that aggressive behavior also declines sharply with age. (10) Another physiological factor that might affect the aggressiveness and even violence level of a person is that of cerebral trauma, especially diseases. These people who exhibit an “impairment of the control systems of the brain” also have been known to occasionally suffer from persistent brain immaturity, brain damage, or toxic impairment of the brain. There has also been presented the single-gene notion about psychopath or sociopath behavior.

Researchers have found that significant number of prisoners have an extra sex chromosomes, for example an “XXY” or “XYY”. (12) Their being in jail does not seem to be the root of their problem but rather it seems to stem from “their low level of intelligence,” which is inherently a genetically influence aspect, according to Robert A. Baron. (10) In post-war studies, studies of the most aggressive of all activities, there have been similarities found with soldier.

For example several senior U. S. Air Force officers have stated that when the Air Force tried to pre-select fighter pilots after world war two the only common denominator between their WWII aces was that they had all been involved in numerous altercations as children. Not as bullies but rather as fighters, the type of person who would not back down once attacked or hurt. This seemed like a strange connection between the type of job and a similarity in childhood activities, because significantly less than a third of school populations engage in fights on a regular basis. This seems to point at a genetic capacity for violence and aggression.

More informally, Gwynne Dyer has felt, through his experiences as a soldier, his genes at work as he says; Aggression is certainly part of our genetic makeup, and necessarily so, but the normal human beings quota of aggression will not cause him to kill acquaintances, let alone wage war against strangers from a different country. The overwhelming majority of those who have killedhave done so as soldiers in war, and we recognize that that has practically nothing to do with the kind of personal aggression that would endanger us as their fellow citizens.

Black Footed Ferret

In the past three decades very few endangered species have been restored to viable populations. The black footed ferret (Mustela nigripes) was believed to be the most endangered mammal in the united states. It is a small mink sized carnivore of the Great plains and intermountain basins The ferrets appear to be obligatory predators on the prairie dogs and once occupied a range essentially identical to that of the prairie dogs. They prey on them and also use their burrows for shelter and nesting.

The prairie dogs are considered agricultural pests and competitors with livestock since white settlement first began in the American west. Large scale rodent control programs were implemented by the state and federal governments. They drastically reduced the population of prairie dogs (and other species related to the prairie dog ecosystem) through trapping, gassing and poisoning. These poisoning programs were considered a major cause of the ferrets demise. But, the main cause was the loss of the ferrets prey base and appropriate habitat.

Their remaining habitat was fragmented thus leaving the ferret population vulnerable to extinction from various causes including inability to find mates, inbreeding depression, environmental events, and disease of ferrets and their prey. The ferrets were believed to be extinct in 1974, but in 1981 a ferret was discovered in Meeteetsee, Wyoming when a ranch dog killed an unusual animal eating from its food dish and the rancher took the carcass to a knowledgeable taxidermist. This was viewed as a rare chance to recover the species.

In 1985, a catastrophic disease struck the small ferret population, and most remaining animals were taken into captivity. Captive breeding was initiated, and reintroduction into the wild from the captive population began in 1991. The ferret is just one of more than 900 species listed under the Endangered Species act as either threatened or endangered. Over three thousand more species wait on a list of candidates for such status, but in the 1980s over thirty-four species went extinct while on the waiting list (Cohn, 1993). Is the ferret program representative of the national effort to recover species?

United States policy on endangered species, including the ferret and hundreds of other plants and animals, is codified in the 1973 Endangered Species act (ESA ,as amended, U. S. Congress 1983, Bean 1991) . This piece of legislation sets a national goal the prevention of any further extinction and the restoration of species currently threatened with extinction. The ESA is a highly popular piece of legislature because no one would advocate the killing of an entire species. But the simple goal of saving a species cloaks a complicated process.

The ferret case is a good illustration of how the ESA is actually outfitted, how and state officials and others tackle the complex work of restoring species, and how problems come about in nearly all recovery plans. In short, the ferret rescue is a measure of how the ESA really works. After finding the small population in Wyoming, in 1981, one might expect a well led and smoothly coordinated recovery effort to have been quickly organized to save a species that had been recognized as Americas most endangered mammal. Many universities, conservation organizations, state and federal agencies, and local people were willing to help.

Collectively they command substantial resources, not only in terms of money: national and international expertise on population genetics and small population management, experienced field researchers, tested breeding facilities, and support staffs from major zoos. All that was needed for the ferrets to be restored swiftly, professionally, and efficiently was a means to bring the talent together in a productive well organized program. Under the ESA, the task of organizing recovery efforts is the responsibility of the federal government acting through the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U. S. National Marine Fisheries Service.

Federal officials had numerous options open to them at the start of the ferret program, one of which was to function like administrators of a large hospital, pulling together a world-class professional team, supporting the necessary work with adequate funding, equipment and facilities, and relying on the teams judgment to bring about the patients recovery. But this model was not selected. The ferret program was organized and operated very differently.

Section 6 of the ESA requires that states be involved to the “maximum extent practicable. ” Early in 1982, the federal government turned the main responsibility for ferret restoration over to the state of Wyoming. Almost immediately, problems began to emerge. Through a formal resolution, the American Society of mammologists (1986:786) urged “the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Wyoming Fish and Game department, and other state wildlife departments, and numerous and numerous interested conservation groups to make broader recovery efforts” than those exhibited by the current program.

Miller, Reading, and Forest (Miller et al. 1996:208) identify the FWS as the national agent responsible for maintaining professional restoration programs. “It is our contention,” they write, “that Region 6, of the FWS, failed to make the ferret recovery a national program. It may have been easiest for Region 6 to acuiesence to Wyomings agenda in the short term, but the strategy has probably impaired the recovery in the long run. People, or agencies, in a position to improve conservation should not simply throw money at a problem, but invest in time and attention as well.

The Wyoming Game and Fish department was interested in doing whatever was necessary to insure that the ferrets be returned to the wild in Wyoming first, whether or not Wyoming was the best place to introduce them. There could have been sites in other states which were better suited for ferret reintroduction, but the jealousy of the Wyoming Game and Fish department prevents them from considering such an alternative. The Greater Yellowstone Coalition (1990) concluded that state-level concerns had taken precedence over national recovery issues.

The Wilderness Society concluded that of the 495 species listed in 1988, only about 16 (3. 2 percent) are recovering. Another 18 listed species (3. 6 percent) may have already been extinct. This is a record that fails to demonstrate the basic promises of the act. The General Accounting Office (1992) added that of sixteen species removed from the list, five were recovered, seven were extinct, and four were reclassified because of misinformation. Two federal audits of the ESA implementation have been conducted.

Reviews of the FWS endangered species program and found that the federal government did not maintain centralized information needed to determine how well the overall program was operating. Required recovery plans have not been developed and approved for many species. In 16 recovery plans that were investigated in depth, nearly half of the tasks listed had not been undertaken even though the plans had been approved, on average, more than four years earlier. Fws officials attributed this to shortage of funds, “the inspector general of the Interior department has lambasted his federal colleagues at the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, charging that they may be sending species to extinction” (Holden1990).

The destruction of other life forms because of the actions of people is a problem with profound biological, ecological, economic, and ethical dimensions. We must assume that a healthy biosphere is in the common interest of humanity. Appreciation of the fundamental importance and far-sightedness of the Endangered Species Act and other biodiversity protection policies has grown over the last two decades, but that has neither prevented nor appreciably slowed the extinction crisis.

Around the globe, the problem of extinction is extreme and growing, with perhaps scores of species disappearing everyday. The ESA is potentially a powerful tool to better the extinction crisis, and in many ways has served as a global model. But despite its value both substantively and symbolically, there are problems with it, as both the biological and political trends of the past years attest. Implementation has fallen short of promise. Protecting species under the ESA is a long , complex process.

Once species are recognized as deserving of protection and are listed, conservation programs must be designed, approved, and then implemented. Almost four thousand species in the United States now wait to be afforded the basic protections of the ESA; several hundred, many of them plants may already be extinct. Beyond the listing process, there are innumerable steps, activities and processes that make up the ESA implementation. The extinction problem in the U. S. and the world is apparently growing faster than practical policy responses can be generated to stop it.

The black footed ferret was a good example for showing how there are problems with the conservation process and limitations of conventional approaches. The ferret restoration program was fraught with problems, which has added to its notoriety in the public eye and the scientific and conservation communities. If we are to improve the policy-making process for conserving biodiversity, we must acknowledge the problem openly, honestly, and realistically. We must turn our knowledge of saving species and take turn it into more effective, more efficient conservation gains. In other words, we must reconstruct the endangered species recovery process.

The Using Animals For Testing

Considering the furor raised about using animals for testing, are there alternatives to using such testing? What are the main tests that use animals and alternatives that would achieve similar results? There is a lot of controversy about using animals to test cosmetics. Animal rights organizations feel that it is unnecessary and uncalled for. The Food and Drug Administration have no law that cosmetics have to be tested on animals. The main reason cosmetic companies continue to use animals to test their products instead of the alternatives is because they are afraid of getting laws suites.

The alternatives to animal testing have not yet been validated, therefore if they were taken to court they may not win the case if these alternatives were used. If companies would recognize the consistency and validity of these products then maybe animal testing will not be needed. Two of the main tests that companies use are the Draize Test and the Irritancy Test. These tests are not needed because there are other tests that don’t use animals and give the same if not better results. The Draize Test is used to measure the harmfulness of the ingredients that are in cosmetics and household products.

The test involves dripping the substance into a rabbit’s eye and recording the results. Scientists use rabbits because they have large eyes and no tear ducts to wash away the chemical. Reactions vary from slight irritation to ulceration and complete blindness. The rabbits are restrained to keep from clawing their eyes. All of the animals are usually killed at the end of the test, or “recycled” into toxicity tests. R. Sharpe writes in his book, The Cruel Deception: The Use of Animals in Medical Research, the Draize Test should not be used because there are a number of ifferences between the human eye and the rabbit eye.

Rabbits have a third eyelid, they have less tear fluid to wash away irritants, they have a more alkaline eye (humans have a pH of 7. 1-7. 3, rabbits have a pH of 8. 2), and rabbits have a thinner cornea. Overall the Draize Test overestimates how irritating a product is to the human eye because rabbits eyes are more sensitive than the human eye (Freeberg). This test is also invalid because of the differences in the way the damage is evaluated. In a study performed by Carnegie University of Pittsburgh twelve substances were sent to twenty-four different aboratories.

The results that came back for the same substances ranged from mild to severe reactions. Since the test itself is so unreliable companies should look into some alternatives. An alternative to using animals to test how harmful an ingredient is to the eye is a method called Eytex. Eytex uses a vegetable protein taken from jack beans. This clear protein gel turns clear when it comes in contact with irritating substances. This process is more accurate than the Draize Test is because the “damage” is measured by a spectrophotometer and not estimated by a person.

The Eytex Test agrees well with he Draize Test, although the results should be compared to human eye irritation. Until better methods come along this test could be used instead of animals. Here are some comparisons of the Eytex Test to the Draize Test: % Agreement %Irritants Substances 85% 89% 101 80% 100% 465 The second column shows how closely related Eytex results agreed with Draize Test results, the third column shows what percentage of irritants were identified by Eytex, and the last column shows the number of substances were tested. There is also close agreement between laboratories on the results.

One study showed 90% agreement between six different laboratories and ten substances (Kelly). Another study sent sixty substances to twelve different laboratories. In nine of thirteen categories of substances there was 100% agreement between the laboratories. There was 83%-93% agreement between the other four categories (Kelly). This shows that there is more agreement between laboratories in the Eytex Test than the Draize Test. Another type of test that is used to establish the irritancy of a product is the Skin Irritancy Test. This test measures how a substance irritates the skin.

Patches are shaved off the backs of rabbits and slightly abraded to make them more sensitive. The substance is placed on the bare skin and covered with gauze for four hours. Researchers look for signs of redness, inflammation, weeping or scabs (Animal Liberation). These tests have been shown to be invalid. In one study household products were tested on rabbits, guinea pigs and humans. Only four of the substances were non-irritating to all of the subjects. Twelve were more irritating in one or more of the species and three were less irritating in one or both of the animals than in humans (Nixon).

In another study twelve substances were tested on human and rabbit skin, the results were similar only for the two most irritating substances. The remaining ten were irritating to the rabbits but not the humans (Phillips). This shows that rabbits’ skin is also more sensitive than humans. There are a number of alternatives to this test. They include reconstructed human epidermis, the Microphisometer, and computer modeling. Reconstructed human epidermis is a multi-layered human skin grown in the laboratory and can be used to test skin irritancy. There are different ways o measure the damage an irritating substance causes.

Cells can be examined under a microscope, membrane damage can be assessed by leakage of enzymes, or inflammation can be determined by release of interleukins (Animal Liberation). Whichever method is used, the results can be measured accurately, unlike the skin irritancy tests done on animals where observers estimate the degree of swelling or redness. Results from this test have so far agreed well with animal studies, although ideally they should be compared to human information (Ponec). The microphysiometer is an instrument that detects small changes in the pH of he pH of the cell culture nutrient fluid (changes in lactate, CO2 production).

When the microphysiometer measured how munch of a product it took to depress the metabolic rate of human skin by 50% there was very good agreement with animal tests as shown in the table below (Parce). Chemical Animal Irritancy Microphysiometer 1 mild 0. 1 2 mild 0. 5 3 moderate-mild 0. 7 4 moderate-mild 0. 8 5 moderate-mild 0. 9 6 moderate 1. 7 7 severe-moderate 3. 9 8 severe 4. 1 The table shows that the Microphysiometer test rated the irritancy of the eight chemicals in the same order as the animal tests, with the same kind of increase. The final alternative to using animals for skin irritancy testing is computer modeling.

Expert computer systems are used to predict the irritancy of new substances based on what is already known about substances with a similar chemical structure. This approach is called Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship. (Animal Liberation). This system is very reliable. A New York company called Health Designs shows that computer modeling distinguished severe irritants from others in 91. 5% of the cases. It distinguished non-irritants from others in 93% of the cases (Sharpe). Animal testing has brought about many discoveries and ures for many diseases, but in the case of household products and cosmetics animals are not needed.

There are many alternatives that are being used, and should be used by all companies. Steps need to be taken to validate these alternatives so cosmetic companies will have no dought about using these alternative methods instead of using animals. Steps can be taken toward ending animal testing for cosmetics by refusing to buy anything that was tested on animals and writing to the companies insisting that they end the testing. No one person can do it alone, but together as a whole it can come to an end.

The Manatee Population

In 1493, when Columbus sailed to the Americas for his second journey, he and his sailors were the first Europeans to spot the present-day manatees. Because of their amazingly humanlike appearance these ancient sailors went home telling stories of mermaids. When the Spanish came over they hunted and ate these massive beasts. Since the early 1900’s the manatee population has dwindled severely. Finally countries and smaller organizations began taking interest in saving the manatees. Laws and regulations were set so that manatees might be saved from extinction.

This has been successful to a point, but still only very few manatees live and they must be nurtured in order to flourish. Manatees are also known as sea cows because they graze on pastures of sea grass. They are air breathing creatures and most kinds can grow up to thirteen feet long during the average life span of sixty years. Manatees can weigh up to 3500 pounds. An average adult weighs between 1000 and 2000 pounds. They range from gray to brown in color and are primarily a plant-eating mammal. Sometimes they may eat small crabs, snails, or any other small animal that clings to the water grass.

Manatees usually keep to themselves but when migration season arrives, they migrate in groups to warmer waters full of rich vegetation. During mating season they will also travel in groups. Mating season is not held at any particular time of the year. However when the females are ready to breed (about seven years old) they will rub certain parts of their bodies up against rocks or other things in the water where a matured male (three to four years old) will follow her. The female will then wait for her suitor or suitors to arrive. If there are more than one she will run from the group until she is ready to mate.

There are four different types of manatees. The most common type of manatee is the West Indian Manatee. They swim freely in fresh or salt water and use their tail to propel themselves and their flippers to steer. At the end of each flipper are three or four nails. Another type of manatee, the West African Manatee, has a similar appearance. There is not much known about this species of manatees but their population seems to be declining. The Amazonian Manatee is found in the Amazon River and swims only in fresh water. It is different from the other manatees because it has smooth skin and no nails at the end of its flippers.

A dugong is another type of manatee. It is found in the coastal waters of the Indian and Pacific Ocean. It swims only in salt water and has smooth skin and no nails like the Amazonian Manatee. One thing different about this type of manatee is that it has a notched tail like a dolphin. Manatees have always amazed since I first saw one in its natural habitat in Florida. Their humanlike features, gentle ways, and carefree attitude have always fascinated me. I think it is that very combination of great size and gentle spirit, which makes the manatee truly unique.

The Fire Ant

The “Fire Ant” is one of the most feared migratory arthropods in North America. The first non-native species was introduced into the Port of Mobile, Alabama, starting in 1919, through soil ballast, from South American ships, being dumped ashore. The black fire ant (Solenopsis richteri Forel) arrived sometime in 1919, and the red fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) sometime in the late 1930’s; both much more aggressive and harsh than their two sister species of fire ants, the Tropical fire ant (Solenopsis xyloni McCook) and the Southern fire ant (Solenopsis geminata Fabricius), which are considered native to North America.

The presence of imported fire ants within United States boarders was first reported in 1929. Currently, the IFA (imported fire ant) is found in eleven states (over 300 million acres) , with sporadic, isolated showings as far west as California and as far north as Kansas and Maryland. The surge in fire ant migration came right after world war two, with the housing boom. The migration of fire ants was mostly associated with the mass movement of grass sod and decorative plants for landscaping purposes.

However, “In 1958, the Federal Fire Ant Quarantine was implemented [to] try to limit the spread of fire ants from the quarantined areas. Hay, sod, plants and used soil moving equipment must me inspected and/or treated before being moved out of the quarantine area. ” The IFA migration methods include “seasonal relocations, migration in nursery stock, natural flights, and after floods rafting on water. Ants can be blown by the wind 12 miles during mating flights. They can “hitchhike” on birds [or other animals] or mass together to form a floating ball to ride out a flood.

It is estimated that a fire ant colony can expand 20-30 miles per year based on mating flights alone. The IFA migration fear is due to damage to people, but also damage to crops and property. Currently, the IFA is known “as damaging 57 different species of cultivated plants” including wheat, cotton, corn, sorghum seed, soybean, blueberry, peanut, sunflower, watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumber, pecan, eggplant, okra, strawberry, and potato in addition to property, fire ants have been associated with may outdoor electrical equipment, due to their strong attraction to electrical and magnetic fields and impulses.

The effected items where fire ants have been known to nest and be found include: gasoline pumps, traffic lights, electrical and telephone transformers/boxes, air conditions (many, many cases) heat pumps, TV’s, computers, walls and plumbing insulation, water meters, insulation of electrical wiring causing electrical disruptions, and beside and beneath roadways. There have been reported cases of roadways collapsing because of fire ants removing massive amounts of soil beneath the road.

Because of their mounds and nesting habits, fire ants have caused many closing of athletic fields, school playgrounds, and campgrounds (much of this closing is due to the fear and stigma behind the fire ant. This fear and stigma will be discussed later. ) More than its damage-causing tendency, the fire ant is feared because of its fierce sting. The fire ant sting is characteristic, with its “fiery” burning sensation, giving the ant its (common) name. Areas where there is a large colony can, and should be, considered dangerous. “In infested areas, fire ant stings occur more frequently than bee, wasp, hornet, and yellowjacket stings.

Stepping on a fire and mound is almost unavoidable, especially when walking in heavily infested areas. Furthermore, many mounds are not easily seen, with many lateral tunnels extending several feet away from the mound just beneath the soil surface. Ants defend these tunnels as part of their mound. ” The ant grabs onto the skin with barbed mandibles, then doubles over its abdomen and stings with it “stinger” (an ovipositor, considering the only fire ants that sting are the workers, who are sterile females. ) The fire ant will sting even after its venom sack is depleted of its venom.

It is known that once a fire ant nest is disturbed, or one ant releases an alarm pheromone, ants will swarm the nest and the area around it, in defense, for over 8 minutes. “In the U. S, they will storm anything that threatens their mound or looks like food, whether it be old people, crawling babies, injured waterfowl, newborn rabbits and fawns, bedridden hospital patients, or you just walking along. ” “A person who stops to stand on a mound or on one of its tunnels, or who leans against a fence post included in the defended area, can have hundreds of ants rush out to attack.

Usually, the ants will be swarming a person (or animal) for 10 seconds before attacking and stinging the victim; this allows more ants to swarm because the victim does not know they are being attacked. “Although a single fire ant sting hurts less than a bee or was sting, the effect of multiple stings is impressive. Multiple stings are common, not only because hundreds of ants may have attacked, but also because individual ants can administer several stings. Each sting usually results in the formation of a pustule within 6-24 hours.

The majority of stings are uncomplicated, but secondary infections may occur if the pustule is broken, and scars may last for several months. Severe infections requiring skin grafting or amputation have been known to occur from [infected] fire ant stings. ” It is estimated that fire ants sting more than 5 million Americans every year. “More than 25,000 people seek medical attention each year for painful fire ant bites. ” It is said that about a dozen Americans die of their fire ant wounds (or complications thereof) each year. With such high numbers, it is no wonder that there is such a fear of these pesky little creatures.

An important indirect effect of the presence of fire ants is just the fear of being stung. Fear and anxiety about fire ants may limit the use of sites where fire ants are present. In some parks, playgrounds, athletic fields, and campsites are not used simply because of the fear of the ants in the area. ” The fire ant, like any other living organism, has to eat. The fire ant eats mainly liquids, however, when only solid food is available, the fire ant will cut the food into manageable pieces and carry it back to the colony, to share with the others.

The first to be fed the protein-based material gathered is the queen. The rest of the colony will eat what is left over. The fire ant gathers liquids by sucking up the substance, and regurgitating it back at the colony, to share. When a food is of solid substance, the ants releases enzymes upon the food to liquefy it, where then it can be sucked back up and fed to the queen and then other workers and winged fire ants. In addition to the above-mentioned crops, fire ants are widely known to eat saplings, wildflowers, fruits and grasses, honeydew, sugars, oils, seeds, and insects.

Of all the resources available to the fire ant to eat, the fire ant looks for items with the most protein in it. Fire ants are known to attack wild animals, including snakes, mice, and turtles. But above and beyond all, the fire ant enjoys insects most of all. If left alone, the fire ant is an effective control of fleas, flies, boll weevils, sugarcane borers, ticks, and cockroaches. Above and beyond all, the fire ant is an invasive ant that can become quite dangerous, if you are not protected.

Upon heavy rains, whole colonies will invade homes and take refuge in walls and in the comfort of carpeting. This leaves potentially defenseless people, such as bedridden people and infants at a high risk. It is almost enough to know that massive control is needed when there is a countrywide fear of these little ants. Since the 1950’s, the fire ant has been the subject of huge governmental control attempts. The federal government has used everything from quarantine to massive chemical sprays (and laying in terms of solid chemical pellets.

With all these attempts, very few have proven successful, for one reason or the other. Either the chemical kills too many kinds of insects, or the fire ant does not feed upon it. Many chemicals and pellets have caused drastic decreases in mouse and snake populations, in addition to affecting domestic livestock, and therefore have been banned. Currently, the US government is taking it upon individual landowners to control their own fire ant problems. (The landowners, mostly farmers have many reasons to do so. For one, fire ant mounds often damage cultivating and mowing equipment.

For another, more important reason, hand-picked crops, like blueberries, are being left to rot because nobody will go into the fire ant infested fields to pick the crop. ) The landowners are now using individual mound baits. These are protein based, poisoned sponges or pellets. The idea is that when the workers get the food, which is high in protein, they will immediately feed it to the queen, causing her to die, and therefore the colony to fallout. These methods are effective, however, on a slow, mound-to-mound basis.

People have to learn to deal with fire ants over the long term. The days of massive chemical treatments, I think, are pretty much over We are working on introducing a number of organisms from South America to provide biological control for fire ants, maybe some diseases of the ant, some parasites, and probably even some predators. But none of those are going to be the golden bullet. ” On a personal and final note. My grandfather, who lives in Florida, near Tampa, has a small blueberry farm, where he, of course, grows blueberries.

Upon one visit, a long while back, I was maybe 12; my brother and I were wrestling (funny, how I let an 8 year old kick my butt. but never mind. ) In this area, walking (or rolling) into a fire ant mound is unavoidable, and so I did. Well, not to mention, I got the crap bit out of me, and I was covered in blisters, and no matter what I did, I could not stop itching. But I’ll tell you, when they sting, the hurt. It is a burning sensation inside your skin that you can’t get rid of. OK, OK, there is more to the story. 4 days later, we went to Disneyland, where we stayed in a cabin in some sort of forest, owned by Disney.

I distinctly remember one day, as we were out at a small snack bar, an adult (older male, but at that time registered as adult) asked me if I had been bitten by a lot of mosquitoes (as my legs were pot marked). I replied no, that they were ant bites, and upon this, I got a stern lecture, in front of my grandpa on how dangerous fire ants were and how stupid it was to mess with them. And the adult was right. But I must say, I have not learned. Still, whenever I go the Florida, I drive golf balls on my grandfather’s farm, using fire ant mounds as tees. Its always fun to have the ants swarm the ball before you drive it.

Using Animals For Testing Is Wrong And Should Be Banned

Twenty-four hours a day humans are using defenseless animals for cruel and most often useless tests because these animals have no way of fighting back and they are very cheap. They have to stop doing all that because these animals have right to live just as we do , there should be new laws to protect them , and they have to be careful because there is a day will come when they find that almost 50% of these animals in the hole world will get distinct . These legislations also need to be enforced more regularly.

Although most labs are run by private companies, often experiments are conducted by public rganizations. The US government, Army and Air force in particular, has designed and carried out many animal experiments. The purposed experiments were engineered so that many animals would suffer and die without any certainty that this suffering and death would save a single life, or benefit humans in anyway at all; but the same can be said for tens of thousands of other experiments performed in the US each year.

Limiting it to just experiments done on beagles, the following might sock most people: For instance, at the Lovelace Foundation, Albuquerque and New Mexico, experimenters forced sixty-four beagles to inhale radioactive Strontium 90 as part of a Larger Fission Product Inhalation Program ,which began in 1961 and has been paid for by the US Atomic Energy Commission. In this experiment Twenty-five of the dogs eventually died. One of the deaths occurred during an epileptic seizure; another from a brain hemorrhage. Other dogs, before death, became feverish and anemic, lost their appetites, and had hemorrhages.

The experimenters in their published report, compared their results with that of other experiments onducted at the University of Utah and the Argonne National Laboratory in which beagles were injected with Strontium 90. They concluded that the dose needed to produce early death in fifty percent of the sample group differed from test to test because the dogs injected with Strontium 90 retains more of the radioactive substance than dogs forced to inhale it , Also at the University of Rochester School Of Medicine a group of experimenters put fifty beagles in wooden boxes and irradiated them with different levels of radiation by x-rays.

Twenty-one of the dogs died within the first two weeks. The experimenters determined the dose at which fifty percent of the animals will die with ninety-five percent confidence. The irritated dogs vomited, had diarrhea, and lost their appetites. Later, they hemorrhaged from the mouth, nose, and eyes. In their report, the experimenters compared their experiment to others of the same nature that each used around seven hundred dogs. The experimenters said that the injuries produced in their own experiment were Typical of those described for the dog (Singer 30).

Similarly, experimenters for the US Food and Drug Administration gave thirty beagles and thirty igs large amounts of Methoxychlor (a pesticide) in their food, seven days a week for six months in order to insure tissue damage . Within eight weeks, eleven dogs exhibited signs of abnormal behavior including nervousness, salivation, muscle spasms, and convolutions. Dogs in convultions breathed as rapidly as two hundred times a minute before they passed out from lack of oxygen.

Upon recovery from an episode of convulsions and collapse, the dogs were uncoordinated, apparently blind, and any stimulus such as dropping a feeding pan, squirting water, or touching the animals initiated another convulsion. After further experimentation on an additional twenty beagles, the experimenters concluded that massive daily doses of Methoxychlor produce different effects in dogs from those produced in pigs. These three examples should be enough to show that the Air force beagle experiments were in no way exceptional.

Note that all of these experiments, according to the experimenters own reports, obviously caused the animals to suffer considerably before dying. No steps were taken to prevent this suffering, even when it was clear that the radiation or poison had made the animals extremely sick. Also, these experiments are parts of series of similar experiments, repeated with only minor variations, that are being carried out all over the country. These experiments do not save human lives or improve them in any way.

It was already known that Strontium 90 is unhealthy before the beagles died , and the experimenters who poisoned dogs and pigs with Methoxychlor knew before , that the large amounts they were feeding the animals (amounts no human could ever consume) would cause damage. In any case, as the differing results they obtained on pigs and dogs make it clear, it is not possible to reach any firm conclusion about he effects of a substance on humans from tests on other species. The practice of experimenting on non-human animals as it exists today throughout the world reveals the brutal consequences of speciesism .

These experiments should stop because these animals have the right to live , but if the doctors dont want these animals to live , so they have to kill them without suffering and thats better , or dont kill them just let them live theirs life . In this country everyone is supposed to be equal, but apparently some people just dont have to obey the law. That is, in New York and some other states, licensed laboratories are immune from ordinary anticruelty laws, and these places are often owned by state universities, city hospitals, or even The United States Public Health Service.

It seems suspicious that some government run facilities could be immune from their own laws . In relation , no law requires that cosmetics or household products be tested on animals ; Nevertheless, by six oclock this evening , hundreds of animals will have their eyes, skin, or gastrointestinal systems unnecessarily burned or destroyed. Many animals will suffer and die this year to produce new versions of deodorant, hair spray, lipstick, nail polish, and lots of other products . Some of the largest cosmetics companies use animals to test their products. These are just a couple of the horrifying tests they use, namely, the Drazie Test.

The Drazie test is performed almost exclusively on albino rabbits. They are preferred because they are docile, cheap, and their eyes do not shed tears (so chemicals placed in them do not wash out). They are also the test subject of choice because their eyes are clear, making it easier to observe destruction of eye issue; their corneal membranes are extremely susceptible to injury. During each test the rabbits are immobilized (usually in a stock, with only their heads protruding) , and a solid or liquid is placed in the lower lid of one eye of each rabbit .

These substances can range from mascara , to aftershave , to oven cleaner. The rabbits eyes remain clipped open. Anesthesia is intervals of one, twenty-four, forty-eight, seventy-two, and one hundred an sixty-eight hours. Reactions, which may range from severe inflammation, to clouding of the cornea, to ulceration and rupture of the eyeball, are recorded by technicians. Some studies continue for a period of weeks. No other attempt is made to treat the rabbits or to seek any antidotes. The rabbit who survive the Drazie test may then be used as subjects for skin-inflammation tests .

Another widely used procedure is the LD-50. This is the abbreviation of the Lethal Dose 50 test. LD-50 is the lethal dose of something that will kill fifty percent of all animals in a group of forty to two hundred. Most commonly, animals are force-feed substances (which may be toothpaste, shaving cream, drain cleaner, pesticides, or anything else they want to test) through a stomach tube and bserved for two weeks or until death. Non-oral methods of administering the test include injection, forced inhalation, or application to animals skin.

Symptoms routinely include tremors, convultions, vomiting, diarrhea, paralysis, or bleeding from the eyes, nose, and mouth . Animals that survive are destroyed . Additionally, when one laboratorys research on animals establishes something significant, scores of other labs repeat the experiment, and more thousands of animals are needlessly tortured and killed . They have to be careful because someday they will find that lmost 50% of these animals in the hole world will be distinct if they are not now .

Every day of the year, hundreds of thousands of fully conscious animals are scalded, or beaten, or crushed to death, and more are subjected to exotic surgery and then allowed to die slowly and in agony. There is no reason for this suffering to continue . In conclusion, animal testing is inhumane and no animal should be forced to endure such torture. Waste in government is one thing; it seems to be an accepted liability of democracy. but wasting of lives is something else.

Transitions of Reptiles to Mammals

A long long time ago, in a galaxy not too far away, was a little blue planet called Earth, and on this world not a single mammal lived. However a lot of time has past since then and we now have lots of furry creatures that are collectively called mammals. How did they get their? Where did they come from? These are the kinds of questions that led me to my subject of choice. I will endeavor to provide examples, using specific transitional fossils, to show that mammals have evolved from a group of reptiles and were simply not placed here by unknown forces.

Before I begin, I would like to define some terms so that nobody gets eft in the dust. The term transitional fossil can be used in conjunction with the term general lineage, together they help explain the how one species became another. “General lineage”: This is a sequence of similar genera or families, linking an older to a very different younger group. Each step in the sequence consists of some fossils that represent certain genus or family, and the whole sequence often covers a span of tens of millions of years.

A lineage like this shows obvious intermediates for every major structural change, and the fossils occur roughly (but often not exactly) in the expected order. However, usually there are still gaps between each of the groups. Sometimes the individual specimens are not thought to be directly ancestral to the next-youngest fossils (e. g. they may be “cousins”” or “uncles” rather than “parents”). However they are assumed to be closely related to the actual ancestor, since the have similar intermediate characteristics.

Where Does It All Begin ? Mammals were derived during the Triassic Period ((from 245 to 208 million years ago) It began with relatively warm and wet conditions, but as it progressed conditions became increasingly hot and dry. ) from members of the eptilian order Therapsida. The therapsids, members of the subclass Synapsida (sometimes called the mammal-like reptiles),generally were unimpressive in relation to other reptiles of their time. Synapsids were present in the Carboniferous Period (about 280 to 345 million years ago) and are one of the earliest known reptilian groups.

Although therapsids were primarily predators by nature, some adaptations included a herbivorous species as well, they were generally small active carnivores. Primitive therapsids are present as fossils in certain Middle Permian deposits; later forms are known from every continent xcept Australia but are most common in the Late Permian and Early Triassic of South Africa. The several features that separate modern reptiles from modern mammals doubtlessly evolved at different rates.

Many attributes of mammals are correlated with their highly active lifestyle; for example, efficient double circulation of blood with a completely four-chambered heart, anucleate and biconcave erythrocytes (blood cells), the diaphragm, and the secondary palate (which separates passages of food and air and allows breathing during mastication (chewing) or suckling). Hair for insulation correlates with endothermy (being warm-blooded), the physiological maintenance of individual temperature independent of the environmental temperature, and endothermy allows high levels of sustained activity.

The unique characteristics of mammals thus would seem to have evolved as a complex interrelated system. Transitions to New Higher Taxa Transitions often result in a new “higher taxon” (a new genus, family, order, etc. ) from a species belonging to different, older taxon. There is nothing magical about this.

The first members of the new group are not bizzare, hey are simply a new, slightly different species, barely different from the parent species. Eventually they give rise to a more different species, which in turn gives rise to a still more different species, and so on, until the descendents are radically different from the original parent.

For example, the Order Perissodactyla (horses) and the Order Cetacea (whales) can both be traced back to early Eocene animals that looked only marginally different from each other, and didn’t look at all like horses or whales. (They looked more like small, dumb foxes with raccoon-like feet and simple teeth. ) But over the ollowing tens of millions of years, the descendents of those animals became more and more different, and now we call them two different orders.

Major Skeletal Differences (derived from the fossil record) The mammalian skeletal system shows a number of advances over that of reptiles. he mode of ossification (process of bone formation) of the long bones is one characteristic. In reptiles each long bone has a single centre of ossification, and replacement of cartilage by bone proceeds from the centre toward the ends. In mammals secondary centres of ossification develop at the ends of the bones. Mammalian skeletal growth is termed determinate, for once the actively growing zone of cartilage is used up, growth in length ceases. As in all bony vertebrates, of course, there is continual renewal of bone throughout life.

The advantage of secondary centres of ossification at the ends of bones lies in the fact that the bones have strong articular surfaces before the skeleton is mature. In general, the skeleton of the adult mammal has less structural cartilage than does that of a reptile. The skeletal system of mammals and other vertebrates is broadly divisible into axial and appendicular portions. The axial skeleton consists of the skull, the backbone and ribs, and serves primarily to protect the central nervous system. the limbs and their girdles make up the appendicular skeleton.

In addition, there are skeletal elements derived from gill arches of primitive vertebrates, collectively called the visceral skeleton. Visceral elements in the mammalian skeleton include jaws, the hyoid apparatus supporting the tongue, and the auditory ossicles of the middle ear. The postcranial axial skeleton in mammals general has remained the rather conservative during the course of evolution. The vast majority of mammals have seven cervical (neck) vertebrae, and do not have lumbar ribs, both characteristics are unlike reptiles.

The skull of mammals differs markedly from that of reptiles because of the great expansion of the brain. The sphenoid bones that form the reptilian braincase form only the floor of the braincase in mammals. In mammals a secondary palate, that is not present in reptiles, is formed by processes of the maxillary bones and the palatines. The secondary palate separates the nasal passages from the oral cavity and allows continuous breathing while chewing or uckling. The bones of the mammalian middle ear are a diagnostic of the class.

The three auditory ossicles form a series of levers that serve mechanically to increase the amplitude of sound waves reaching the tympanic membrane, or eardrum, produced as disturbances of the air. The innermost bone is the stapes, or “stirrup bone. ” It rests against the oval window of the inner ear. The stapes is homologous with the entire stapedial structure of reptiles, which in turn was derived from the hyomandibular arch of primitive vertebrates. The incus, or “anvil”, articulates with the stapes.

The incus was derived from the quadrate bone, which is involved in the jaw articulation in reptiles. The malleus, or “hammer”, rests against the tympanic membrane and articulates with the incus. The malleus is the homologue of the reptilian articular bone. The mechanical efficiency of the middle ear has thus been increased by the incorporation of two bones of the reptilian jaw assemblage. In mammals the lower jaw is a single bone, the dentary. The mammalian limbs and girdles have been greatly modified with locomotor adaptations.

The primitive mammal had well developed limbs and was five-toed. In each limb there two distal bones (radius and ulna in the forelimb; tibia and fibula in the hindlimb) and a single proximal bone (humerus; femur). The number of phalangeal bones in each digit, numbered from inside outward, is 2-3-3-3-3 in primitive mammals and 2-3-4-5-4 in primitive reptiles. Modifications in mammalian limbs have involved reduction, loss, or fusion of bones. Loss of the clavicle from the shoulder girdle, reduction in the number of toes.

The Transition This is a documented transition between vertabrate classes. Each group is clearly related to both the group that came before, and the group that came fter, and yet the sequence is so long that the fossils at the end are astoundingly different from those at the beginning. As Gingerich has stated (1977) “While living mammals are well seperated from other groups of animals today, the fossil record clearly shows their origin from reptilian stock and permits one to trace the orgin and radiation of mammals in considerable detail.

This list starts with pelycosaurs (early synapsid reptiles) and continues with therapsids and cynodonts up to the first unarguable “mammal”. Most of the changes in this transition involved elaborate repackaging of an expanding brain nd special sense organs, remodeling of the jaws and teeth for more efficient eating, and changes in the limbs and vertebrae related to active, legs-under- the-body locomotion.

Braincase floor shows first mammalian tendencies and first signs of stronger attachment to the rest of the skull. Lower jaw shows first changes in jaw structure. Body narrower, deeper, vertebral column more strongly constructed. Ilium further enlarged, lower-limb musculature starts to change. This animal was more mobile and active. Too late to be a true ancestor, must be a “cousin”. Haptodus (late Pennsylvanian) – One of the first known sphenacodonts, showing the initiation of sphenacodont features while retaining many primitive features of the ophiacodonts. Skull more strongly attached to the braincase.

Teeth become size differentiated, with the in the canine region and fewer teeth overall. Stronger jaw muscles. Vertebrae parts and joints more mammalian. Neural spines on vertebrae longer. Hip strengthened by fusing to three sacral vertebrae instead of just two. Limbs very well developed. – Dimetrodon, Sphenacodon (early Permian) – More advanced pelycosaurs, clearly losely related to the first therapsids. Dimetrodon is almost definitely a “cousin” and not a direct ancestor, but as it is known from very complete fossils, it’s a good model for sphenacodont anatomy.

Medium sized fenestra. Teeth further differentiated, with small incisors, two huge deep-rooted upper canines on each side, followed by smaller cheek teeth, all replaced continuously. Fully reptilian jaw hinge. Lower jaw made of multiple bones and first signs of a bony prong later involved in the eardrum, but there was eardrum yet, so these reptiles could only hear ground-borne vibrations (they did have a reptilian iddle ear). Vertebrae had still longer neural spines (especially so in Dimetrodon, which had a sail), and longer transverse spines for stronger locomotion muscles. Procynosuchus (late Permian) – The first known cynodont – A famous group of very mammal-like therapsid reptiles, sometimes considered to be the first mammals. Probably arose from the therocephalians, judging from the distinctive secondary palate and numerous other skull characters.

Enormous temporal fossae for very strong jaw muscles, formed by just one of the reptilian jaw muscles, which has now become the mammalian masseter (muscle). Secondary palate now omposed mainly of palatine bones, rather than vomers and maxilla as in older forms.

Lower incisor teeth were reduced to four per side, instead of the previous six. Dentary now is 3/4 of lower jaw; the other bones are now a small complex near the jaw hinge. Vertebral column starts to look mammalian: first two vertebrae modified for head movements, and lumbar vertebrae start to lose ribs. A diaphragm may have been present. -Thrinaxodon (early Triassic) – A more advanced cynodont. Further development of several of the cynodont features seen already. Temporal fenestra still larger, larger jaw muscle attachments.

Bony econdary palate almost complete. Functional division of teeth: incisors (four uppers and three lowers), canines, and then 7-9 cheek teeth with cusps for chewing. The cheek teeth were all alike (no premolars and molars). The whole locomotion was more agile. Number of toe bones is 2-3-4-4-3, intermediate between the reptile number (2-3-4-5-4) and the mammalian (2-3-3-3-3), and the “extra” toe bones were tiny. – Exaeretodon (late Triassic) – True bony secondary palate formed exactly as in mammals. Mammalian toe bones (2-3-3-3-3).

Lumbar ribs totally lost. – Sinoconodon (early Jurassic) – Proto-mammal. Eyesocket fully mammalian now closed medial wall). Hindbrain expanded. Permanent cheek teeth, like mammals, but the other teeth were still replaced several times. Mammalian jaw joint stronger, with large dentary condyle fitting into a distinct fossa on the squamosal. This final refinement of joint automatically makes this animal a true “mammal”. – Peramus (late Jurassic) – An advanced placental-type mammal. The closest known relative of the placentals and marsupials.

Has attained a fully mammalian three- boned middle ear with excellent high-frequency hearing. – Steropodon galmani (early Cretaceous) – The first known monotreme (egg laying ammals). – Pariadens kirklandi (late Cretaceous) – The first definite marsupial. – Kennalestes and Asioryctes (late Cretaceous) – Small, slender animals; eyesockets open behind; simple ring to support eardrum; primitive placental-type brain with large olfactory bulbs; basic primitive mammalian tooth pattern. Canine now double rooted.

Still just a trace of a non-dentary bone (the coronoid process), on the otherwise all-dentary jaw. “Could have given rise to nearly all subsequent placentals. ” says Carroll (1988) So, by the late Cretaceous the three groups of modern mammals were in lace: monotremes, marsupials, and placentals. Placentals appear to have arisen in East Asia and spread to the Americas by the end of the Cretaceous. In the late Cretaceous, placentals and marsupials had started to diversify a bit, and after the dinosaurs died out, in the Paleocene, this diversification accelerated.

For instance, in the mid-Paleocene the placental fossils include a very primitive primate-like animal (Purgatorius – known only from a tooth, though, and may actually be an early ungulate), a herbivore-like jaw with molars that have flatter tops for better grinding, and also an insectivore (Paranygenulus). Because the characteristics that separate reptiles and mammals evolved at different rates and in a response to a variety of interrelated conditions, at any point in the period of transition from reptiles to mammals there were forms that combined various characteristics of both groups.

Such a pattern of evolution is termed “mosaic” and is a common phenomenon in those transitions marking the origin of major new adaptive types. To simplify definitions and to allow the strict delimitation of the Mammalia, some authors have suggested basing the boundary on a single character, the articulation of the jaw between he dentary and squamosal bones and the attendent movement of accessory jaw bones to the middle ear as auditory ossicles.

The use of a single character allows the placement in a logical classification of numerous fossil species, other mammalian. characters of which, such as the degree of endothermy and nursing of young and the condition of the internal organs, probably never will be evaluated. It must be recognized, however, that if the advanced therapsids were alive today, taxonomists would be hard-put to decide which to place in the Reptilia and which in the Mammalia.

The Black Bear

The black bear is the smallest North American bear. The adults are usually less than six feet long and stand about two to three feet tall at shoulders. The weight of a black bear varies between 125-500 ponds. They have small eyes and rounded ears. Also their snout is very long. Each paw has five very strong claws, which is used for tearing, digging, and climbing. One single hit from the front paw is enough to kill an adult deer. A black bear is a true carnivore, but if not prevented the black bear could be a huge problem to humans.

A black bear loves to eat fresh leaves, berries, fruits, nuts, roots and also nsects and small mammals. When fall comes near, a black bear must eat large amounts of food in order to gain enough weight to keep them through winter hibernation. During hibernation when a little bit warmer weather comes near the black bear must awaken and take short excursions outdoors, so they can get a drink or some food. This is so the black bear will be able to go back to sleep easier. During hibernation a black bear will stay in a cave or some kind of stone formation.

Usually it will be near a creek or stream. The area around the cave will usually have a lot of vegetation. If the cave does not have any water or food around it the black bear will try to find another place to sleep through the winter. That place will have plenty of food and water. During the short excursions outdoors during hibernation the bear looks for replenishments, this is why the bear must be near food and water (Rieffberger 8). A black bears habitat usually depends on two factors. One is vegetation and the other is human activity.

A black bear usually is not picky about a place to stay if it has got food and is not too close to human activity. A black bears habitat is usually characterized by a dense forest understory, which includes brushy territory or a lot of downed trees which fell due to the weather. Once spring starts coming around, black bears start emerging from their hibernation. They move around the area a lot, because they are looking for a new place which has good cover to stay under and a lot of vegetation a round (Rieffenberger 8). Black bears are becoming more and more of a problem.

If people have garbage or food that they have thrown out, a black bear may come and get it. To keep a black bear out of the garbage, you need to get rid of the garbage properly. If you do have a bad bear problem, you should call the West Virginia Division on Natural Resources and they will either trap the black bear or chase it away with the use of trained hounds. If the officer traps the bear, the officer has to fill out a form to tell where it was captured, and what the problem was. Then the officer tags the bears ear and fills out information about the bear itself.

When the officer releases the black bear, he has to tell the date, county, and exact location. After this is done, the officer will be ble to if it is the same bear when another black bear is caught and has a tag. The very last resort in getting rid of a black bear is shooting it. If this is the case, a conservation officer will have to be the one to kill the black bear. If any damage is done the person should check and see if the damage is covered by the bear damage compensation. Not all damage is covered. Sometimes no damage at all is covered (Houchins 2). Most problems with black bears is caused by human error.

If a person gets rid of their trash and edible products properly, they will most likely not ave a problem with black bears (WV DNR). The mating season for a black bear differs from most animals. Most animals breed when they are in peak physical condition, but black bears when their body weight is at the lowest for the year and the food is scarce. This is usually in the spring. The birth of a cub usually takes place in the sows winter den. If it is the bears first litter, there will often be only one cub, but if it is not she may have two or three cubs. The cub(s) will have a coat of short hair, and their eyes are shut.

The cubs are very small in size, usually between six to twelve ounces. The cubs grow rapidly on the rich milk diet. Their eyes remain shut for the first six weeks (Rieffenberger 16). When cubs are three or four months old they take their first excursion from their mothers side. Under the eye of their mother, the cubs learn what to eat and what not to eat. The cubs are weaned in the late summer or early fall when food becomes very abundant. Usually in September the mother takes the cubs out and teaches them how to find sources of food like berries, fruits, and nuts.

Also sources of water and shelter. Around this time the cubs are eighing about 25-65 pounds (Wildlife Biologue). The cubs usually spend their first winter with their mother. Some cubs and their mothers move around all winter and go back to their den on stormy days (Rieffenberger 18). By June of the cubs second year, they are introduced to the world alone. When the cubs are turned loose their weight usually goes down because of the problem of not being able to find food, but with the help of a long summer and abundant amount of food the cubs will make it all right.

The cubs gain weight even more the third summer when they know how to find food better by themselves. When the mother turns the cubs loose in their second summer, it is time for her to mate again (Wildlife Biologue). To protect black bears from hunters, sanctuaries are established by the D. N. R. These sanctuaries protect the breeding bears. The cubs of these bears will be the ones turned loose to keep the population of black bears up so they wont go into extinction. Also in the sanctuaries scientists can study a bears behavior, diet, and way of life including birth and death.

The scientists can do tests on black bears and find cures for diseases that black bears may get in the future (WV DNR). Black bears have inhabited West Virginia for along time. There was a lot of black bears in the state when it was settled by the white men. In the3 1700s the black bears were killed in large numbers by hunters. The hunters wanted the meat and the furs so they could stay warm in the winter. In 1933 a letter was sent to T. M. Cheek, state conservation commission director. They told in the letter that the black bear was a beautiful problem and it receives no protection, but should.

In 1944 there was now a black bear hunting season. No black bears could be killed by the hunter unless it was hunting season. Then are only so many bears could be killed during one season by one hunter. This helped the black bear population a lot. The black bears were finally protected by a new law. After this the black bear population grows not to rapidly. The future will soon note an increase of black bears. With the hunting seasons and the help of the Department of Natural Resources the black bears will be seen all over the state. If you have seen one black bear in your county now, it will not be unlikely to see five or six in the future.

To summarize, black bears are one small, North American carnivore that tands about three feet tall to shoulders, and weighs about 125-500 pounds A black bears paws are suitable for tearing, digging, and climbing. One swipe from a black bears claws is enough to kill an adult deer. Although classified as a carnivore, they are actually a omnivore who likes to eat leaves, berries, roots, nuts, and some small animals. In the fall, black bears start eating large amounts of food in order to gain weight and survive winter hibernation. Where a black bear chooses to inhabit depends on the vegetation of an area and the amount of human activity.

Black bears are a very complicated animal. They are calm at most times and are only angered mostly by humans. Black bears usually breed in the spring and the young leave their mothers in the second summer of their life. Because of their endangered species status, the DNR have established sanctuaries to protect black bears. In 1944, a black bear season was established. Only during this time could black bears be killed by hunters. Due to this new protection law, the black bear population began to rise. In the future, it will be a common sight to see a few black bears in your county.

McTeague, or Animalism – Unpublished

The last decade of the twentieth century in America saw a rise in programs for human’s “self betterment. ” A popular form of betterment is that of the inner animal. Interest in Native American animal mysticism, vision quests, and totem animals have increased dramatically in the past few years. No forms of media have been spared; Calvin Klein’s supermodels come on during sitcom commercials to tell viewers they need to be a beast, or to get in touch with their animal within.

In the last decade of the nineteenth century, however, animalism was viewed not as a method of self-improvement but as the reprehensible side of humanity that lingered beneath the surface, waiting for an opportune time to come out and play. In Frank Norris’ novel McTeague, humans are no better than the beasts they claim to control. They cage and torment defenseless creatures, but cage and torment themselves far, far, worse.

McTeague, Trina, Zerkow, and Marcus are animals in thin human’s clothing, walking the forests of McTeague, waiting for the opportunity to shed their skin and tear each other apart, while the real animals of the world continue leading lives far superior to their human counterparts. McTeague, the title character of the work, is the king of beasts in San Francisco. A charlatan dentist who constantly mumbles and growls when speaking, he makes his living by causing great pain to his fellow human beings. The woman he falls in love with, Trina Sieppe, is a patient in his chair.

McTeague’s love is spawned from the agony of false orthodontics. Although etherized, Trina experiences the hurt of McTeague’s drills. As he works his macabre work on the beautiful girl, McTeague begins to see her as more and more attractive. The pain is a sexual catalyst for McTeague; like an animal on the hunt, he becomes aroused by the suffering he causes Trina. The instinct to take advantage of the defenseless girl becomes overpowering, and he eventually gives in to his raging, bestial nature and plants a dog-like smooch on her lips.

From this love forged in sex, the downfall of McTeague and Trina is cast. McTeague resembles the beast inside more and more as his marriage progresses. At first, sexually dominating Trina satiates him. Like a drug, however, a greater dosage is needed to sustain McTeague’s high. He begins to verbally abuse the girl, refusing her simple affections and pleasures. Then, as his financial life begins to slide downhill, McTeague begins the physical abuse. A slap here, a punch there, until the boxing of ears is a commonplace occurrence. McTeague acts like a grizzly bear keeping its mate from wandering to far.

Even this doesn’t please his sadistic nature. McTeague begins to drink, and his alcohol-sodden brain allows the beast to take full control. He begins biting Trina’s fingers. Although the skin is not usually broken by his chomps, her fingers are bruised to the point where she finds work difficult if not incapacitating. Eventually, McTeague does begin to break her flesh with his teeth, and the paint that she works with poisons her fingers, requiring amputation. Mutilated and finally crushed, Trina leaves McTeague, causing the beast to take full control of the fallen man.

McTeague’s pact with nature is sealed when he kills Trina in the coatroom of a school. When he flees, he relies on his animal instincts to keep him alive. Like a deer chased by a wolf, McTeague manages to elude his pursuers until they trap him in Death Valley. The hunting pack then closes in, and McTeague joins the hunters in a blood-soaked death. Trina is as much an animal as her husband. She is initially repelled by the dentist’s brutish nature, but as soon as he casts his dominating spell on him, her masochistic animal nature awakens.

She experiences sexual arousal from McTeague’s domination, and is hooked from the first time. Her love is a deadly addiction; the drug eats away at her until she “dies. ” She stays with McTeague through the beatings, the chewings, and the verbal abuse, always coming back for more because she likes it. Only when McTeague irrevocably mutilates her does she leave him. She is proud of her bruises, happily trading stories with Maria Macapa like teenage schoolgirls comparing their make-out sessions.

Trina’s sexual beast is never satisfied, always craving more and more abuse; abuse that McTeague is more than willing to give her. Trina’s “other” dark side involves her extramarital affair with her fortune. The sheer luck of the lottery winning changed the girl forever. The cash was never to be spent, only saved; a noble, if not intelligent, plan. However, Trina’s simple animal mind can not grasp even this simple concept. She begins pilfering whatever money there is around the house, keeping it in a sack in a box. Trina hoards everything, denying both her husband and her mother necessary living money.

She even sacrifices her own health, buying three-day-old meat instead of fresh cuts. When she is out on her own, the money becomes a surrogate drug; she no longer has access to the arousing abuse of McTeague, but she begins sleeping with the money covering her like a blanket. She makes love to her hoard nightly, but never contentedly. Like McTeague’s abuse, she needs more and more to achieve the same effect. She sacrifices everything for her money — her health, her facial hygiene, her hair, and eventually her life.

She is the stubborn dog that would not leave its master’s side, and she becomes as useless as her lover in the end. Zerkow is the perfect amalgamation of McTeague and Trina. Like the dentist he is a sadist, but prefers the implied pain of threats as opposed to the direct pain of the teeth. Zerkow chooses to hide behind his knife, reveling in the pain he causes Maria. He has been graced with Trina’s addiction for money as well. A two-dimensional stereotype of a Polish Jew, Zerkow is constantly obsessed with money. His only pleasure comes from Maria’s insane ravings about lost Spanish treasure.

Zerkow does not have far to progress to achieve an animalistic state; he is hanging on to civilization by a thin, weakening thread. When Maria is incapable of producing his favorite intoxicant, he kills her. His broken brain slips further into his bestial nature, and he begins wandering, eventually killing himself. Zerkow would have fared much better had he married Trina; he needed her material wealth as much as she did, and the couple could have experienced menage-a-trois’ with the horde on a regular basis, satisfying both little animals.

Marcus Schouler is the predator of the story. His motivations come from imagined and real slights by McTeague. Unlike the dentist, however, Marcus is not some simplistic brute of a herd animal; he is a cunning, strategic hunter. Marcus is smart enough to hide behind a friendly facade, always mumbling to himself but wearing a mask of happiness. He circles the McTeagues, waiting for an opportunity to strike a blow against them. The chance finally comes, and the wound is critical; because of Marcus’ stoolpigeoning, McTeague looses his license and primary means of income.

Marcus then withdraws, chasing the beasts until they tire. When he learns McTeague is on the run, Marcus is in close pursuit. Chasing the brute into a corner, the cunning cheetah proceeds to tear into him until McTeague is half-crazy, sick, and tired. Marcus then strikes his final, albeit imperfect, blow and kills his hated adversary. He dies in the process, but death is a small price to pay for the feeling of revenge Marcus needs. The final stab at humans is the way the animals in the story act.

The two dogs in the alley are constantly fighting each other with barks. They are confined to cages, so for a long time they never have the opportunity to come to blows. Cages can only hold a creature for a finite amount of time, however, and eventually an opportunity arises where the two animals finally meet. Instead of tearing each other to shreds, they sniff each other and seem quite satisfied with the other. The fact that the dogs can succeed where the humans failed goes a long way in explaining the other character’s actions.

The four principle characters of McTeague fall short where two “simple-minded” canines win. According to Norris, humans are less than animals; they are slow-witted beasts barely able to come to grips with their own nature. Instead of pretending they are so high and mighty, Norris forces people to realize that their humanity causes them to fall beneath the animals. The very things humans pride themselves on are their downfall, and the animals are laughing, laughing as humans hunt and kill themselves closer and closer to extinction.

He Who is Attaked by Animals

When I was in grade school, my family lived seven miles outside of Lincolnton, Georgia, about fifty miles north of Augusta. It wasn’t really a farm because technically farms produced something; all our farm produced was trouble. We owned probably some of the most vicious animals in Lincoln County. This tended to keep the flow of friends to our house down to a minimum. Many of our friends had been bitten, kicked, cut, and bruised at the very least. These attacks could cause physical and emotional trauma at worst, and the publicity surely didn’t encourage other friends to visit.

We had chickens, cows, horses, cats, dogs, turkeys, fish, and geese. As harmless as some of these animals may sound, I was severely injured by every one of them. From being kicked and bucked by the horses, to being bitten and mauled by the dogs, we knew it all firsthand. One day my mother, unknowingly, made our situation worse. She went to visit her best friend, Molly, who was a fellow animal lover and member of the Lincoln County Humane Society. Molly would occasionally invite our family over for dinner, and we always went, never suspecting her underlying scheme to rid herself of annoying and potentially dangerous pets.

She had collected these animals through the years from abusive families. Molly was quite a character. It was amazing how she could manipulate a conversation about her grandmother’s spaghetti recipe to how much my mother would enjoy having one of her smelly goats or pissed-off fighting cocks as a pet of her own. I didn’t understand how these conversations could persuade my mother, yet they worked every time. Once Molly decided to convince my mother that we undoubtedly had to have a six-month-old fighting cock that had been confiscated by the Sheriff’s Department.

It had formerly belonged to our third cousin, Billy Joe Paradise, who had traveled to Louisiana on the weekends to fight his batch of cocks and had told my brother and me, time and again, how much fun it was. Though we were not into animal cruelty, thanks to Molly we were blessed with his offspring anyway, and the rooster became ours. Knowing Billy Joe, the bird had probably been pumped with steroids and driven to the brink of insanity one too many times. When we arrived home, as soon as the rooster was released, it headed straight for my brother and me. We did not accept this as a good first impression.

My mother had a pet turkey that the rooster immediately teamed up with. The routine practice for the two was to run after their prey, animal or human, until it collapsed from exhaustion. Their attack strategies were similar to those of the Raptors on Jurassic Park. The turkey would let its presence be known to distract the attention of the prey, while the actual attack came from the rooster who was cleverly hidden to the side. The rooster would usually attack your leg, but in my case, since I was so small, the attack would occur most of the time at my mid and upper body.

The rooster’s preferred tactic was a side swipe with its leg, while the turkey would counter with wing beating and pecking. Even at the age of eight, I had concluded that these could prove to be permanently damaging to my health, so I tried to stay as far from these two animals as possible. The intelligence of the two surprised my brother and me. When we told our mother of the violent attacks, which occurred often, she cackled at the thought that these two innocent pets could inflict pain on another creature.

She thoroughly disagreed with our counterattacks of rock throwing, and she cursed us with the notion that we would be struck dead by God if we harmed her good-natured and helpless pets. My brother and I took this as cruel and unusual punishment. To aid in our escape, we tried to train our mother’s vicious dogs to protect us from her birds, to no avail. After a month of feeding them chicken, we gave up, realizing they were eating better than we were. We had no idea that the worst of the attacks were yet to come. It was late afternoon on a Saturday, and the sun had not completely gone down.

My family had just finished dinner and was relaxing in front of the television. A John Candy movie, The Great Outdoors, was rented, which turned out to be a very appropriate movie, considering the way things were going to unfold that evening. Lyle, my older, yet not necessarily wiser, brother, seemed a little fidgety. In the middle of the action scene, he stood up, tapped me on my shoulder, and signaled me to follow him to our bedroom. I was a bit annoyed and unwilling to go since I was just getting into the plot of the movie, but I decided that it must be pretty important.

I followed him back to our bedroom, and he immediately lifted his mattress to unveil a mountain of empty Marlboro cigarette cartons. I couldn’t believe that he would reveal to me such an immense stash since I was renowned for ratting on him. I used to tease him that he had more bad habits than Bill Cosby had Pudding Pops. I took this diversion as another one of his ploys to get me hooked on cigarettes. Lyle explained that he had another stash in the barn about 300 yards away from our house which meant crossing turkey and rooster territory in semi-darkness, a foolish thing to try.

Arriving at the rear door to our house, Lyle put me on his shoulders to see out of the window that was quite a bit above his head. I threatened him that he better not drop me or he was going to be in a world of hurt, even though I wasn’t strong enough to live up to the threat. Peering out, I told him that the tag team was nowhere in sight. I took a deep breath and had the privilege of stepping into the danger zone first, Lyle following close behind. We walked back to back, listening for the slightest sounds, though the only sound I could hear was the beating of my heart.

The sun had almost gone down, and it was getting harder to see. We arrived at the barbed wire fence and went through, Lyle catching his shirt in three different spots. At this point, I noticed the shirt he was wearing was one of my own. We ran through the field, hoping there were no animals around since it was pitch black. Trees canopied the barn, blocking any chance of the disappearing sunlight reaching it. I urged Lyle to hurry up and open the door. After catching his breath he ran his hand down the door, searching for the handle. He asked me to wait outside while he went in and retrieved the cigarette.

While I waited, I found a 2 x 4 on the ground and decided to use it if I came across any trouble. Suddenly, something brushed against my back. Slowly turning my head, I noticed it was just Lyle turning to shut the door. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a lighter, put the cigarette in his mouth, and lit it. At this moment, I felt a cold chill run down my spine. The soft glow from the cigarette revealed the turkey standing only feet from us. His feathers were all ruffled, a sign to us that he was extremely happy or extremely pissed. I didn’t think it was the former. Lyle attempted to sprint away and came to a sudden halt.

Just beyond him, I could see the rooster in the cigarette’s glow of light. As Lyle stared in terror, his mouth fell open and the cigarette fell to the ground and went out. I could hear his screams for help quite clearly, but I had my own problems to worry about. I could no longer see the turkey, though I could hear it ruffling its feathers. I gripped the 2 x 4 tightly in my hand as a claw stepped on my shoe and tore through the thick material. The turkey’s claw was razor sharp, and as it pierced my shoe, it also penetrated my skin. My body began trembling as I thought of the turkey’s gargantuan size.

Insanity overcame me, and I began swinging the 2 x 4 in all directions hoping to make contact, with no luck. This terrified me even more because I knew the turkey could be anywhere. Gathering my courage, I decided to run until I reached the house. As I took off, so did the bird, and the next thing I knew I was being smashed in the back of the head with its massive wings. I swung the 2 x 4 and this time made contact with the beast. A loud screech cut the night air. I resumed running for the house. The turkey continued to pursue only inches behind. I was afraid I would collide with something, so I stretched out my arms.

Then I heard the most terrifying sound of all, as if a herd of elephants were stampeding towards me. I knew they could only be Lyle’s size thirteen, hot pink, shredded, blown out, smelly Converse All Stars. It was too late to react; all I could do was brace for the impact that would inevitably come. The first pain I felt was his knee smashing my rib-cage, causing me to lose my breath. Then I felt an excruciating pain pierce through the side of my face as his fist struck my cheek bone. The only thing that saved me from further injury was the cushioning and consumption of my body by his bulging stomach, working as if it were an air bag.

My face was engulfed in what I thought were numerous fat rolls, what he referred to as his fuel tank for his love machine, a common fat-boy excuse. I flew through the air for thirty feet. Lyle later claimed he was throwing me from the path of danger. By then, there was not only the turkey on the scene, but also the rooster had joined in. Grabbing my hands, Lyle hoisted me over his shoulder. It was uncommon for Lyle to help me, but I figured that things were different in life or death situations. As Lyle hobbled frantically, the tag team continued to gain on us. Arriving at the fence, he dropped me on my back.

We attempted to lunge our bodies through the fence simultaneously. I made it through unscathed and was already on my way to the house when I noticed Lyle wasn’t around. Returning I found him entangled in the barbed wire. The relentless rooster and turkey attacks slowed his ability to untangle his clothes, or should I say, my clothes. I assumed that he was probably losing quite a bit of blood and something needed to be done immediately. Taking a moment to gather my senses, I searched for a weapon. The only things I could find were some quartz rocks and horse nuggets, so I proceeded to bombard the raging poultry.

This gave Lyle the opportunity he needed to escape. There was an outbreak of profanity when I accidentally hit him with a horse nugget. Freeing himself, he stumbled away. Because the fence stalled their attempts of attack, we had time to get to the house. Slamming the door, I exclaimed, “Now that it’s over, we can laugh about it. ” Lyle wasn’t amused with my comment. Our mother applied bandages and made several tourniquets from socks, while we explained our adventure trying to avoid the underlying reason for the journey.

We hinted that we had had a sudden urge to polish our horse’s saddles, this statement not believed by our parents for a second, but they never pushed the issue. That night my brother and I went to the hospital in Augusta to have our battle scars sewn up. Nobody was really sure what happened to that old rooster. He just disappeared one day, but I think that the lucky feather that Lyle has taped to the back of his Snapper has something to do with it. But peace was short. The next week Molly persuaded our mother that she needed some Venezuelan attack geese for perimeter security.