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Animals  (tags: animals, AnimalWelfare, cruelty, environment, protection, suffering )

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Through our Travellers' Animal Alert initiative, the Born Free Foundation has received thousands of reports about captive wild animal exploitation from compassionate travellers returning from their holidays.

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Cher C. (1462)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 9:51 am

Through our Travellers’ Animal Alert initiative, the Born Free Foundation has received thousands of reports about captive wild animal exploitation from compassionate travellers returning from their holidays.

One issue that continues to rear its ugly head is the use of wild animals being used as props for souvenir photographs in order to make money from tourists. Born Free has received hundreds of reports involving animals at resorts and hotels in Mexico in particular. This activity appears to take place in many Mexican tourist resorts, notably in Playa del Carmen, Cancun, Cabo San Lucas, Ensenada and Costa Maya.

Tourists are offered the opportunity to have their photographs taken with various animals, predominantly the cubs of big cats, such as lions, tigers and jaguars, but also monkeys, lizards, parrots and toucans.

Reports have described tiny cubs, looking drowsy and weak, being passed from tourist to tourist, who pay around $20 for each picture. Despite claims by the organisers of these "photo shoots" – that the animals are orphaned, that any ‘donations’ received will help feed them, and that they are provided good living conditions – the reality is often very different. In the case of big cat cubs, most will have been separated from their mothers at birth, in many cases their claws and teeth may have been removed, or the animals drugged, to lessen the risk of possible human injury. In addition, many of these animals live in terrible conditions and when they get older, some may be killed, and others homed in roadside zoos or circuses. Read more about the issues surrounding animal photo props here.

Zoo Check, Born Free’s core campaign dealing with captive issues, has raised concern about animal exploitation in tourist resorts with the Mexican authorities on numerous occasions. From our correspondence on this issue of wild animal photo props, it appears that this practice is currently deemed as legal under Mexican law. Although there have reportedly been efforts made by the Mexican authorities to ‘check-up’ on these people and ensure that they have the legally required permits to operate, there currently seems little interest in addressing the clear welfare concerns and the dubious fund-raising claims.

Born Free is continuing to express our concerns about the use of wild animals as photographic props with the Mexican authorities and also the travel industry, raising awareness and calling for action to address the clear welfare concerns and bring this activity to an end.

Born Free has joined forces with NGOs FAADA* and Care for the Wild to raise greater awareness about the plight of wild animals used as photographic props in Mexico.

Please sign our petition here....

You can also raise your concerns about the continued use of wild animals as photographic props by writing a polite letter or email to the Mexican embassy. For those in the UK, Ambassador details below:

His Excellency Mr Eduardo Medina-Mora

Embassy of Mexico

16 St. George Street





Natasha Salgado (672)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 10:35 am
Poor babies..signed+email sent. Thx!

Constance F. (429)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:05 am
Left message with LA embassy at 213 -351- 6800

Signed and shared petition on their link. Signed
with 499 supporters

Constance F. (429)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:06 am
Here is the petition if you can't find it in article. Maybe someone can hyperlink

Lisa Neste (752)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:31 am
Thank you for signing the petition "Stop the Abuse of Animals Used for Tourist Photos" Thanks for posting Cher. And thanks to Constance for the added info!

Lisa Neste (752)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:33 am
You cannot currently send a star to Constance because you have done so within the last day.

naomi cohen (44)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:40 am
signed. thank you, cher.

naomi cohen (44)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:42 am
thank you, constance. your link worked. :)

Pat B. (356)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:47 am
TY,Cher for this.

Kit B. (276)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:48 am

Petition signed and email sent.

Julie E. (372)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 12:12 pm
Please sign this petition-

Julie E. (372)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 12:20 pm
Noted, signed, shared and in the process of sending e-mails. I get so upset when I see any wildlife being treated this way. Leave them where they belong! In the wild with their mothers or an accredited sanctuary. Grrrr!

. (0)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 12:27 pm
Noted & Petition signed. Thanks Cher

Past Member (0)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 1:06 pm
NS&S. Thanks for signing. Had to sign x3 and comments to Washington Embassy and New York Mission to the UN. Just NOT acceptable!

Mary T. (339)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 1:19 pm
Signed the petition. thank you Cher

Thomas P. (452)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 2:26 pm
Noted and signed...thanks Cher

. (0)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 2:46 pm
Thank you for this.

Ilona V. (0)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 2:49 pm
Thanks. Signed & noted.

Lisa sick Windsor (149)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 3:44 pm
Signed and noted, thanks Cher!

Past Member (0)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 4:18 pm
with 987 supporters

AniMae C. (480)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 4:22 pm
with 991 supporters

Shana M. (56)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 7:02 pm
Signed #1,031. Noted.

Marie W. (67)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 9:53 pm

Bryna Pizzo (139)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 10:39 pm
Thank you! (s, n, p, t)

Leslene Dunn (79)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:11 pm
Noted and signed. These poor babies need to be in the wild with their mothers. What the hell is wrong with humans.

Ruth M. (252)
Wednesday June 12, 2013, 11:45 pm
Will send letter

Sherri SicktilNovtwenthfour (128)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 2:14 am
Thank you Cher (s,n,p,t)

Danuta Watola (1260)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 2:50 am

Giana Peranio-Paz (406)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 3:09 am

Carol Bischoff (420)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 3:21 am

Ljiljana Milic (108)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 4:39 am
with 1,255 supporters
245 NEEDED !!!

Ruth C. (266)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 8:35 am

Sara P. (69)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 9:05 am
Thanks Cher for sharing and thanks to Constance and Julie for give us the address petition.

Carol H. (229)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 7:45 pm
signed and noted

Lisa Zarafonetis (168)
Thursday June 13, 2013, 10:49 pm
Shared on FB.

Past Member (0)
Friday June 14, 2013, 2:22 am
with 1,449 supporters
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