Monday, March 26, 2012

ACTION ALERT: NWF and Scotts Team Up

Why would an environmental group form a partnership with Scotts/Monsanto, the maker of pesticides and weed killers? Both are huge killers of bird life. We are talking here about the National Wildlife Federation. This non-profit organization is supposed to be protecting our wildlife and promoting a healthy lifestyle. Though, studies show that people who use these products have dogs who have higher rates of cancer.

The company makes Miracle-Gro and Ortho, while their Roundup brand is marketed by Scotts and owned by Monsanto. NWF finally ended this relationship because of the bad press that Scotts knowingly added pesticides to their bird seed, killing the very birds they were supposed to be helping. We urge you to sign this petition to NWF to let them know that we won't support them while they partner with pesticide companies. NWF claims that they "work to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for our children's future."

Roundup has shown to have negative environmental impacts. And pet dogs exposed to the weed killer 2,4-D are dying of cancer at twice the normal rates, according to a study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Dog owners who spray or dust their lawns with weed killers are exposing their dogs, birds and wildlife to poisonous chemicals.
Scotts Weed and Feed uses a combination of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) and 2-(2-Methyl-4-chlorophenoxy) propionic acid (mecoprop) for weed control. They claim that 2,4-D breaks down relatively quickly in  seven to 10 days, the slower-acting mecoprop may remain active for two months or more and is water soluble, making it a groundwater contamination risk, according to the Extension Toxicology Network.  

In 2011 The News York Times reported: Pesticides kill 72 million birds directly, but an unknown and probably larger number ingest the poisons and die later unseen. Of course they leave behind orphaned chicks who will die as well.
It is unbelievable that an environmental group, supposed to be saving wildlife and our bird life, would even consider a partnership with such a company. It only legitimizes their nefarious work allowing them to continue to sell poisonous chemicals and also to distribute millions of pounds of birdseed containing chemicals dangerous to birds.

U.S. bird populations are in decline largely due to habitat loss as forests and fields are taken over by urban sprawl and agriculture. Cats, who are predators and do kill birds, are scapegoated and vilified by groups like NWF. In the meantime, other offenders go free, and misinformation and half truths are spread cat predation.

Court documents show that even though the company’s staff chemist and staff ornithologist warned about the toxicity danger, Scotts continued to sell the chemical-laden birdseed. They pled guilty in federal court to selling contaminated birdseed (during the years 2005 to 2008 Scotts distributed 73 million packets of poisoned birdseed.) They paid a $4.5 million fine. The seed had been coated with Storcide II to keep insects from eating it. The EPA lists Storcide II as “toxic to birds” and warns that “exposed treated seed may be hazardous to birds.”

The attempted whitewashing by chemical companies is rampant. But for an environmental group to put aside morals and ethics and accept this reprehensible relationship?

Safe Lawns report that in the past year America’s 57 poison control centers fielded approximately four million calls, treating 2.4 million human poison exposures. Pesticides — weed and insect killers and fungicides — cause a significant number of the worst cases. More than half of pesticide exposures involved children age 5 or younger.
To reduce this exposure to the most vulnerable population, avoid using synthetic pesticides and fertilizers on lawns and gardens. Numerous safer, natural alternatives exist that work well and are more cost competitive than ever before.

Even though NWF eventually called off the relationship, we are urging you to sign this petition, so that we can show NWF that animal lovers everywhere are outraged that they could even think of forming an alliance with such a company.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Remove Feral Cat Killer as head of PIAA

Photo: Herald Sun. PIAA president pictured holding a dead cat 

Animal advocates are demanding the resignation of Australia's president of the Pet Industry Association after he posed smiling in a photograph holding a dead cat.

According to Australian newspaper, the HeraldSun, Pet Industry Association of Australia president Steve Austin is pictured smiling with two friends as he holds a dead feral cat dangling by its neck off a piece of white rope.

PIAA chief executive officer Roger Perkins defended Mr. Austin, saying he was "having a bit of fun'' after a day of hunting feral cats in the Kimberleys.

Mr. Austin defended himself saying, "This judgment does not reflect my feeling toward companion animals and as PIAA president I respect people's passion for their pets and am committed to ensuring our pets welfare.''

Austin went on to say that feral cats were not like ordinary house pets. "Feral cats, like the one pictured, are not like our friendly pet moggy but are a devastating problem that decimate and kill our Australian wildlife in the millions,'' he said.

Animal advocates across Australia are demanding Austin step down as president.

Debra Tranter, founder of animal advocacy group Oscar's Law, was quoted as saying, "This is the president of PIAA, which represents thousands of pet owners, was quite happy to pose for a disgusting photo with a cat dangling off a rope. It just shows complete disregard and lack of respect...Animals should be treated humanely and with respect even if they are dead,'' she said.

Alley Cat Rescue is urging our supporters to sign our petition to ask PIAA to remove Austin as president.