31 January 2014
Johannesburg (AFP) – Several hundred reptiles and amphibians were found dead at Johannesburg airport when a routine inspection uncovered some 1,600 of the creatures crammed into two crates destined for the United States.
The shipment, from Madagascar, was left unattended in the cargo area of OR Tambo International Airport after bad weather delayed flights to the US, South Africa’s National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) said on Friday.
“The bad smell coming from the sealed animal crates indicated that many of the reptiles were dead or dying and in need of urgent assistance,” the NSPCA said in a statement.
The surviving animals, which include geckos, frogs, chameleons, lizards and toads, are being treated at Johannesburg Zoo.
The NSPCA said the animals had been kept in small muslin bags or plastic tubes for about five days before they were found on January 29.
“Many animals could not move or turn around in their containers. None had been provided with water,” it said.
More than 360 of the creatures died of dehydration, kidney failure, cannibalism and infections, Johannesburg Zoo managing director Bulumko Nelana told Sapa news agency.
The shipment was legal and the animals were destined for the pet trade, according to the NSPCA.
“People who have exotic animals as pets must realise that they are causing this cruelty. Without the demand for these animals as pets, there would be no market and these animals would not be stolen from the wild,” said Ainsley Hay, the manager of the NSPCA’s Wildlife Protection Unit.
About Mike Neuman
Identical twin; Long-time advocate of protection of our environment; Married; Father to three sons; Grandfather to one granddaughter; Born and raised in Wisconsin; Graduate of University of Wisconsin; post graduate degrees in agricultural economics and Water Resources Management fro UWMadison; Former School Crossing Guard for City of Madison; Bike to Work for 31 years with Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Retired from DNR in 2007; Biked to school crossing guard site 2 X daily for 7 years retiring in 2019; in addition to being an advocate of safeguarding our environment, I am also an advocate for humane treatment of animal, children, and people in need of financial resource for humane living. I am presently a Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, Madison, Wisconsin.
I oppose all long (>500 miles) distance travel (via fossil fuel burning) for nonessential purposes and all ownership of more than one home.
I am opposed to militarism in any form particularly for the purpose of monetary gain.
I am a Strong believer in people everywhere having the right to speak their minds openly, without any fear of reprisal, regarding any concerns; especially against those in authority who are not acting for the public good?in a timely fashion and in all countries of the world not just the U S..
My identical twin, Pat, died in June 2009.
He was fired from his job with the National Weather Service despite having a long and successful career as a flood forecaster with the Kansas City National Weather Service. He took a new position in the Midwest Regional Office in Minneapolis.
Unfortunately, Pat’s work for the NWS went sour after he began to see the evidence for concern about rising global temperatures shortly after relocating to Minneapolis, and how they appeared to effect of flooding on the Red River that flows out of Canada before entering the U.S. in North Dakota.
. Pat and I conversed on a regular basis with other scientists on the Yahoo Group named “Climate Concern “ and by personal email. The NWS denied his recommendation to give his public presentation o n his research at the “Minneapolis Mall of America” in February 2000, which deeply affected h,im. I will h He strongly believed the information ought be shared with the public to which I concurred. That was the beginning of the vendetta against my brother, Patrick J. Neuman, for speaking strongly of the obligations the federal government was responsible for accurately informing the citizenry.
A way great similar response to my raising the issue of too many greenhouse gases being emitted by drivers of vehicles on Wisconsin highway system, my immediate supervisors directed: “that neither global warming, climate change nor the long term impacts upon the natural resources of Wisconsin from expansion of the state highway system were to be any part of my job requirements, and that I must not communicate, nor in a memorandum to all the bureau, shall any person who works in the same bureau I do communicate with me, neither verbally on the phone, by email.