“Has the World Reached Peak Chicken?” Chickens`Planet?


Has the World Reached Peak Chicken?

You won’t believe how many chickens live on this planet.

—By , , and

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/08/peak-chicken

| Mon Sep. 2, 2013 3:00 AM PDT

A chicken and a chart

On Wednesday, the Northern California animal sanctuary Animal Place will airlift—yes, you read that right: airlift—1,150 elderly laying hens from Hayward, California, to Elmira, New York, in an Embraer 120 turbo-prop.

The price? $50,000.

Right. So obviously, this isn’t the most efficient way to spend your chicken-helping money. It didn’t take me very long to think of some alternatives: For example, you could couple all 1,150 hens off and buy each pair its own home. You could feed 367 chickens fancy organic food for an entire year.* You could feed 157 people the very fanciest, most coddled, free-rangest, organic-est eggs ever for a year. You could buy flocks of chicks for 2,500 farmers in the developing world through the charity Heifer International.

Don’t get me wrong—it’s not that I think that these soon-to-be-airborn hens don’t deserve a better life. They come from an undisclosed California battery cage egg operation, and as most people know by now, that is no picnic. Animal Place’s Marji Beach explained to me that once laying hens reach the age of about 18 months, their egg production slows, and it’s no longer economically feasible for egg operations to keep them around. The result is that each plant has to get rid of thousands of “spent” hens every year. What happens to those hens? In most cases, they don’t end up in your chicken soup broth, or even in your cat or dog’s food. That’s because most slaughterhouses don’t accept them—they have too little meat on their bones to turn a profit. Instead, egg producers often kill spent hens with highly concentrated carbon dioxide gas. (That probably costs far less than flying the hens across the country, but it doesn’t appeal to Animal Place, whose website urges visitors over and over again to go vegan.)

When a few other Mother Jones staffers and I heard about the spent-hens problem, it got us wondering: Has the world reached peak chicken? Considering the fact that Americans eat 79 billion eggs a year, that’s an awful lot of laying hens. And that’s to say nothing of the so-called broiler operations that make chickens for supermarket shelves and fast-food sandwiches and nuggets.

According to UC Davis professor and poultry expert Dr. Rodrigo Gallardo, there are a few reasons why the world is eating more chicken and eggs than ever these days. “If you think about several years ago, most people ate beef or pork because there was more availability and because it was cheaper,” Gallardo says. But chickens have become more attractive as options over time: they’re lean, they’ve been bred over time to produce more meat, and raising them takes up much less land than raising cows or pigs.

“If you think about eggs, eggs are cheap, they are easy to consume, they are fun—people can cook them in different ways,” Gallardo explains. “Kids always like them, and they are the cheapest protein you can get from an animal source.”

Exactly how many chickens does the world have? we wondered. The answer, we found, is a whole lot—and it’s increasing. Here are a few charts that will give you a sense of the scale of the chicken explosion:

Correction: An earlier version of this article miscalculated the price of organic chicken feed. The sentence has since been fixed.

Pesticides From California´s Central Valley Drift And


Poster for Lassen Volcanic National Park, Cali...

Poster for Lassen Volcanic National Park, California, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

image61[1]

Pesticides From California’s Central Valley Drift And Contaminate Remote Regions Of National Parks

Posted: 26 Jul 2013 06:00 PM PDT

The pesticides that are used in large quantities in California’s Central Valley — one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world — have now been found miles and miles away from their place of use, in the bodies of frogs living in the remote mountains of several national parks. This research is the first to demonstrate just how far the pesticides used in the region can drift — contaminating regions that are located great distances from the place of use.

Image Credit: Pacific Tree Frog via Flickr CC
Image Credit: Pacific Tree Frog via Flickr CC

Roughly 8% of total US agricultural production occurs in the Central Valley — making it one of the most intensely farmed regions in the whole of North America, and the world. Pesticides are widely used in the region, and in enormous quantities — completely eclipsing pesticide use in other US states.

“Our results show that current-use pesticides, particularly fungicides, are accumulating in the bodies of Pacific chorus frogs in the Sierra Nevada,” stated Kelly Smalling a research hydrologist from the US Geological Survey. “This is the first time we’ve detected many of these compounds, including fungicides, in these remote locations.”

The Pacific chorus frog — Pseudacris Regilla — is a relatively common species throughout much of the California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range. Just as with most other amphibians — pesticides, fungicides, and other agrochemicals, cause significant problems for chorus frogs, in particular greatly weakening their immune system.

For the new work — the researchers collected frogs, water samples, and sediment samples, from a number of different ponds, ranging “from Lassen Volcanic National Park at the northern most point of Central Valley, to the Giant Sequoia National Monument in the valley’s southern extent. All sites were downwind of agricultural areas.”

“The samples were tested for 98 types of pesticides, traces of which were found in frog tissues from all sites,” stated Smalling. “We found that even frogs living in the most remote mountain locations were contaminated by agricultural pesticides, transported long distances in dust and by rain.”

The USGS has more:

Two fungicides, commonly used in agriculture, pyraclostrobin and tebuconazole, and one herbicide, simazine, were the most frequently detected compounds, and this is the first time these compounds have ever been reported in wild frog tissue. Another commonly detected pesticide was DDE (Dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene) a breakdown product of DDT which was banned in the United States in 1972. The continued presence of a DDT byproduct reveals how long this banned chemical can impact biodiversity.

A comparison of the frog tissue with water and sediment collected from the same sites shows that the frogs were the more reliable indicator of chemical exposure. This is partly due to the physical-chemical properties of the l compounds and biological influences such as such as organism specific metabolism and life history. Documenting the occurrence of these compounds is an important first step in figuring out the health consequence associated with the exposures.

“Very few studies have considered the environmental occurrence of pesticides, particularly fungicides which can be transported beyond farmland,” stated Smalling. “Our evidence raises new challenges for resource managers; demonstrating the need to keep track of continual changes in pesticides use and to determine potential routes of exposure in the wild.”

The new research was just published in the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

Pesticides From California’s Central Valley Drift And Contaminate Remote Regions Of National Parks was originally posted on: PlanetSave.

Where´s Waldo? New commensal species, Waldo arthuri, discovered off California


North and South Atlantic Ocean

North and South Atlantic Ocean (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A new alien-like species discovered off California by Staff Writers London, UK (SPX) Jul 17, 2013


The following tentacles and foot of Waldo arthuri give it an alien appearance. Credit: Diarmaid O’Foighil.

After nearly 25 years of searching, three scientists have finally found Waldo. No, not the loveable bespectacled character in children’s picture books, but rather an unusual clam discovered off the coast of California and British Columbia.

Paul Valentich-Scott from the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, and Diarmaid O Foighil from the University of Michigan, Museum of Zoology first began discussing this unusual clam back in 1989.

Valentich-Scott discovered his strange specimens off the coast of Santa Barbara and Morro Bay, California, while O Foighil uncovered his while trawling for invertebrates off Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

At a scientific conference Valentich-Scott and O Foighil were chatting about clams during a break in the proceedings. As they were discussing new discoveries, the light went off. They had discovered the same new species, at the same time, but over 1,000 miles apart.

Neither scientist could identify the animal, and both were amazed by its thin, translucent shell and long willowy tentacles. O Foighil was able to collect and observe living specimens of the new species.

“We were looking closely at sea urchins and noticed something crawling on the fine spines covering the urchin body”, declared O Foighil. “We were amazed to see that there were minute clams crawling all over the sea urchin.”

Thus two decades of research began, trying to understand and formally describe this new animal. “We never anticipated this would be such a long project”, Valentich-Scott exclaimed. ‘But every time we started in one direction we hit a wall and needed to begin again.”

Rescue finally came from doctoral student Jingchun Li at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Li is a specialist in clam DNA. She was able to amplify the DNA of the new species and compare it to other similar species. “We were pleased to see the new species was very distinct genetically”, said Li.

“However we were surprised to find that its closest relative was from the South Atlantic Ocean off Argentina.” Valentich-Scott and O Foighil invited Li to collaborate on the final publication.

Valentich-Scott stated, “This is a very peculiar animal, they only seems to live on the spines of one type of sea urchin in a commensal relationship. We found it ironic that the new species was in the genus Waldo and just couldn’t help but ask, “Where’s Waldo?“.

Where’s Waldo? A new commensal species, Waldo arthuri (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Galeommatidae), from the Northeastern Pacific Ocean. ZooKeys 316: 67-80, doi: 10.3897/zookeys.316.4256

What a Wonderful World we live in! A Musical Sponge, World´s Smallest Vertebrate, Paleolithic Fungus & more! Top Ten New Species Of 2013


Top Ten New Species Of 2013 — A ‘Musical’ Sponge, World’s Smallest Vertebrate, A ‘Paleolithic’ Fungus, A ‘Trifecta’ Find, & More!

Posted: 23 May 2013 10:54 AM PDT PlanetSave

Lightning raoch - Lucihormetica luckaeLightning Roach Lucihormetica luckae (image credit: Vrsansky et al)

The list is here!… Yes, the annual list of ‘Top Ten’ New Species has been announced.

Organized annually by the Institute for International Species Exploration (IISE) at the University of Arizona, an international committee of experts reviewed animal, vegetable and microbial species culled from 140 top nominations out of a total candidate pool of 18,000 species — all discovered (and properly named according to taxonomic rules) in the previous calendar year (2012).

Top Species selections hail from five continents…. Alas, no Australian picks this year. However, one (tiny vertebrate) comes from Papua New Guinea — part of Micronesia — which is pretty darn close to the land down under!

Members of the committee could use any criteria they wished to select the final ten under the overarching purpose of highlighting biodiversity (and the many scientists and research institutes engaged in exploration of new species) while paying special attention to “taxonomic, geographic, and natural history diversity.”

While are the selections are fascinating, there is one that achieves the “trifecta” in new species discovery (read on to see why).

To view the species distribution map, visit the map page here.

All of the following species descriptions and photos come directly from the top 10 species website (http://www.top10species.org). The original reference (source of the discovery) and photo is cited following each listing.

Well then, enough preliminaries, here (in no ranking order) are the Top Ten New Species of 2013:

1] Lilliputian Violet Viola lilliputana

Lilliputian Violet Not only is the Lilliputian violet among the smallest violets in the world, it is also one of the most diminutive terrestrial dicots. Known only from a single locality in an intermontane plateau of the high Andes of Peru, Viola lilliputana lives in the dry puna grassland ecoregion. Specimens were first collected in the 1960s, but the species was not described as a new until 2012. The entire above ground portion of the plant is barely 1 cm tall. Named, obviously, for the race of little people on the island of Lilliput in Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.

Country: Peru

Reference: Ballard, H. E. and H. H. Iltis. 2012. Viola lilliputana sp. Nov. (Viola sect. Andinium, Violaceae), one of the world’s smallest violets, from the Andes of Peru. Brittonia 64(4), 353-358.

2] Lyre Sponge Chondrocladia lyra

LyreSponge

A spectacular, large, harp- or lyre-shaped carnivorous sponge discovered in deep water (ave. 3399 m) from the northeast Pacific Ocean off the coast of California. The harp-shaped structures or vanes number from two to six and each has more than 20 parallel vertical branches, often capped by an expanded, balloon-like, terminal ball. This unusual form maximizes the surface area of the sponge for contact and capture of planktonic prey items.

Country: NE Pacific Ocean; USA: California

Reference: Lee, W. L., Reiswig, H. M., Austin, W.C., and L. Lundsten. 2012. An extraordinary new carnivorous sponge, Chdondrocladia lyra, in the new subgenus Symmetrocladia (Demospongiae, Cladorhizidae), from off of northern California, USA. Invertebrate Biology xx, 1-26.

(Ladies and gentlemen: The “trifecta” of new species: it’s new, it’s a mammal, and, it’s a primate!)

3] Lesula Monkey Cercopithecus lomamiensis

Lesula monkey Discovered in the Lomami Basin of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the lesula is an Old World monkey well known to locals but newly known to science. This is only the second species of monkey discovered in Africa in the past 28 years, and was first seen by scientists as a captive juvenile in 2007. Scientists describe the lesula as shy having human like eyes. It is more easily heard than seen by the booming dawn chorus it performs. Adult males have a large bare patch of skin on the buttocks, testicles, and perineum that is brilliant blue in color. Although the area where it occurs is remote, the species is hunted for bushmeat and thus its status vulnerable

Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Reference: Hart, J.A., Detwiler, K.M., Gilbert, C.C., Burrell, A.S., Fuller, J.L., Emetshu, M., Hart, T.C., Vosper, A., Sargis, E.J., and A. J. Tosi. 2012. Lesula: a new species of Cercopithecus monkey endemic to the Democratic Republic of Congo and implications for conservation of Congo’s central basin. PLoS ONE, 7, e44271.

4] No to the Mine! Snake Sibon noalamina

'No to the mine' Snake

A beautiful new species of snail-eating snake has been discovered from highland rainforests of western Panama. The snake is nocturnal and a predator of soft bodied prey including earthworms and amphibian eggs in addition to snails and slugs. This harmless snake defends itself by mimicking the alternating dark and light rings of venomous coral snakes. Mining of ore deposits in the Serrania de Tabasara mountain range where the species is found is degrading and diminishing its habitat. The species name is derived from the Spanish phrase “No a la mina,” or No to the Mine.

Country: Panama

Reference: Lotzkat, S., Hertz, A., and G. Kohler. 2012. A new species of Sibon (Squamata: Colubroidea: Dipsadidae) from the Cordillera Central of western Panama, with comments on other species of the genus in the area. Zootaxa 3485: 26-40.

5] A Smudge on Paleolithic Art Ochroconis anomala

black fungus on Paleolithic art In 2001, black stains began to appear on the walls of Lascaux Cave in France. These stains were so prevalent by 2007 that they became one of the major concerns for the conservation of the precious rock art at the site that dates from the Upper Palaeolithic. A white fungus, Fusarium solani, outbreak had been successfully treated when, a few months later, black staining fungi appeared. The genus primarily includes fungi occurring in the soil and associated with the decomposition of plant matter. While this, one of two new species of the genus from Lascaux, is as far as known harmless, at least one species of the group, O. gallopava, causes diseases in immunocompromised humans.

Country: France

Reference: Martin-Sanchez, P. M., Novakova, A., Bastian, F., Alabouvette, C., and C. Saiz-Jimenez. 2012. Two new species of the genus Ochroconis, O. lascauxensis and O. anomala isolated from black stains in Lascaux Cave, France. Fungal Biology 116, 574-589.

Image: Lascaux Cave, France. Source: Prof. Saxx. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lascaux_painting.jpg

6] World’s Smallest Vertebrate Paedophryne amanuensis

smallest vertebrate (Madagascar frog) Living vertebrate animals range in size more than 3,000 fold, from this tiny new species of frog as small as 7 mm to the blue whale measuring in at 25.8 m. The new frog was discovered near Amau village in Papua, New Guinea. It claims the title of smallest living vertebrate from a tiny Southeast Asian cyprinid fish that captured the record in 2006. The adult frog size, averaging length of both males and females, is only 7.7mm. With few exceptions, this and other ultra-small frogs have been found in association with moist leaf litter in tropical wet forests suggesting a unique ecological guild that could not exist under drier circumstances.

Country: New Guinea

Reference: Rittmeyer, E. N., Allison, A., Grundler, M. C., Thompson, D. K., and C. C. Austin. 2012. Ecological guild evolution and the discovery of the world’s smallest vertebrate. PLoS ONE 7, e29797.

7] Endangered Forest Eugenia petrikensis

Eugenia evergreen Eugenia is a large, worldwide genus of woody evergreen trees and shrubs of the myrtle family that is particularly diverse in South America, New Caledonia and Madagascar. The new species E. petrikensis is a shrub growing to two meters with emerald green, slightly glossy, foliage and beautiful dense clusters of small magenta flowers. It is one of seven new species described from the littoral forest of eastern Madagascar and is considered to be an endangered species. It is only the latest evidence of the unique and numerous species found in this specialized humid forest that grows on sandy substrate within kilometers of the shoreline. Once forming a continuous band 1,600 km long, the littoral forest has been reduced to isolated, vestigial fragments under pressure from human populations.

Country: New Madagascar

Reference: Snow, N., Rabenantoandro, J., Randriatafika, F., Rabehevitra, D., Razafimamonjy, N. D., and S. Cable. 2012. Studies of Malagasy Eugenia (Myrtaceae) — III: Seven new species of high conservation concern from the eastern littoral forests. Phytotaxa 48, 39-60.

8] Lightning Roaches Lucihormetica luckae

Lightnign cockroach Luminescence among terrestrial animals is rather rare and best known among certain groups of beetles — fireflies and certain click beetles in particular — and cave-inhabiting fungus gnats. Since the first discovery of a luminescent cockroach in 1999, more than a dozen species have, pardon the pun, come to light. All are rare and, interestingly, so far only found in remote areas far from light pollution. The latest addition to this growing list is L. luckae that may be endangered or possibly already extinct. It is known from a single specimen collected 70 years ago from an area recently heavily impacted by the eruption of the Tungurahua volcano. The species may be most remarkable because the size and placement of its lamps suggest that it is using light to mimic toxic luminescent click beetles.

Country: Ecuador

Reference: Vrsansky, P., Chorvat, D., Fritzsche, I., Hain, M., and R,. Sevcik. 2012. Light-mimicking cockroaches indicate Tertiarty origin of recent terrestrial luminescence. Naturwissenschaften. 99, 739-749.

9]  No Social Butterfly Semachrysa jade

lacewing butterfly In a trend setting collision of science and social media, Hock Ping Guek photographed a beautiful green lacewing with dark markings at the base of its wings in a park near Kuala Lumpur and shared his photo on Flickr. Dr. Shaun Winterton, an entomologist with the California Department of Food and Agriculture, serendipitously saw the image and recognized the insect as unusual. When Guek was able to collect a specimen, it was sent to Dr. Stephen J. Brooks at London’s Natural History Museum who confirmed its new species status. The three joined forces preparing a description using Google Docs. In this triumph for citizen science, talents from around the globe collaborated by new media in making the discovery. It is named, by the way, for Winterton’s daughter, Jade, not its color.

Country: Malaysia

Reference: Winterton, S. L., Guek, H. P., and S. J. Brooks. 2012. A charismatic new species of green lacewing discovered in Malaysia (Neuroptera, Chrysopidae): the confluence of citizen scientist, online image database and cybertaxonomy. ZooKeys 214, 1-11.

10] Hanging Around in the Jurassic Juracimbrophlebia ginkgofolia

Hangingfly Living species of hangingflies can be found, as the name suggests, hanging beneath foliage where they capture other insects as food. They are a lineage of scorpionflies charactersized by their skinny bodies, two pairs of narrow wings, and long threadlike legs. A new fossil species, Juracimbrophlebia ginkgofolia, has been found along with preserved leaves of a gingko-like tree, Yimaia capituliformis, in Middle Jurassic deposits in the Jiulongshan Formation in China’s Inner Mongolia. The two look so similar that they are easily confused in the field and represent a rare example of an insect mimicking a gymnosperm, 165 million years ago, before the explosive radiation of flowering plants.

Country: China

Reference: Wang, Y., Labandeira, C.C., Shih, C., Ding, Q., Wang, C., Zhao, Y., and D. Ren. 2012. Jurassic mimicry between a hangingfly and a ginkgo from China. PNAS 109, 20515-19.

About the Top Ten New Species List (source: top10species website):

The list is announced each year on or about Carolus Linnaeus’ birthday on May 23rd. Linnaeus is the “Father of Taxonomy” and his work in the mid 18th century was the beginning point for “modern” naming and classification of plants and animals.

A Note About IISE:

The International Institute for Species Exploration is dedicated to the exploration, inventory, and classification of earth’s species, public awareness of the biodiversity crisis, advocacy for the important roles played by taxonomy and natural history museums, and in advancing cybertaxonomy, the application of cyber and digital tools to accelerate and improved comparative morphology, descriptive taxonomy, and phylogenetic classification.

Over 1,000 sick or starving sea lion pups have washed up on shores in Southern California


 

Many Sick Sea Lions Found In California

Posted: 11 Apr 2013 08:29 AM PDT

 

Over 1,000 sick or starving sea lion pups have washed up on shores in Southern California since January. This trend has been reported about for months, according to the Marine Mammal Care Center.

Image Credit: Quadell. Wiki Commons

Image Credit: Quadell. Wiki Commons

Some of the pups washing up on shores now are the same ones that were rescued previously. One female pup that was rescued in San Pedro was found in Sausalito in April. It was first rescued earlier in the year. This particular pup had lost half her body weight and was emaciated when she was found in April.

It had been speculated it was radiation that was harming them, but now it appears it is more likely a lack of food sources. Their normal prey (fish and squid) apparently has changed locations and the sea lion pups are physically unable to travel to the new areas to access them. NOAA has declared the situation an Unusual Mortality Event and is investigating.

About seven times the normal number of sea lion pups have been washed up on shores from January 1 to March 31. It has been estimated about 45% of the pups born last June have perished during this very difficult time. Hopefully, the investigators will find out soon what has caused the problem and be able to generate some solutions.

According to the Marine Mammal Center, there are well over 200,000 wild California sea lions. The center treated over 1,400 in 2009. Marine mammal centers around the country rescue many marine species  each year, even though recently they have experienced a loss of government funding and may need extra donations to deal with this current seal pup situation.

Many Sick Sea Lions Found In California was originally posted on: PlanetSave.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch Awareness Video


https://secure3.convio.net/engage/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserActi

please, look around there; there are some more videos about this theme! We have no time for dreaming our dreams – we have to put hands in hands and ACT! Don´t use plastic bottles, don´t buy plastic toys etc.

 

 

 

 

 

Let´s get out from consumers´glitzi, glanzi-world.

Let´s think with our own “head”.

We are responsible for our earth …

 

New Case of Mad Cow Found in California (poor cows)


Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), H&E

Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), H&E (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

New Case of Mad Cow Found in California AprNew Case of Mad Cow Found in California April 24, 2012. ”

They’re here!” –

Heather O’Rourke, Poltergeist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9aENGodu5A

Let’s assume for the moment that this was not a California Happy Cow. Happy Cows, as you know, are disease-free, or so we are told by USDA. We are also being told that meat and milk are safe to eat, so that sure must be a relief to American consumers. Before being sent to the rendering facility where her body would have been ground into pet food for companion cats and companion dogs, how much milk over how many years did yesterday’s Mad Cow provide for California boys and girls? A cow filters through her udder 10,000 liters of pus, proteins, & dead white blood cells each day. See: http://www.notmilk.com/m.html One cannot donate blood if he or she has spent more than two weeks in England, home of the original Mad Cow Disease outbreak. If one cannot donate blood because the infectious mad cow disease protein (Prion) can be passed in the blood; AND; If Mad Cow Disease sometimes has a 40 year incubation period; AND; Since Mad Cows are clearly in our milking herd before their lethal diseases are detected; THEN; Do you still lack the wisdom and continue to drink milk or eat concentrated dairy cheeses, butter, and ice cream from animals you know to be diseased? BUT; The good news is twofold. First, dairy is delicious. Second, once infected with the human form of Mad Cow Disease, death comes rapidly. The bad news? There is no bad news. Mad Cow Disease can save our Social Security and pension funds and give America a financially strong future. Robert Cohen http://www.notmilk.com il 24, 2012. “They’re here!” – Heather O’Rourke, Poltergeist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9aENGodu5A Let’s assume for the moment that this was not a California Happy Cow. Happy Cows, as you know, are disease-free, or so we are told by USDA. We are also being told that meat and milk are safe to eat, so that sure must be a relief to American consumers. Before being sent to the rendering facility where her body would have been ground into pet food for companion cats and companion dogs, how much milk over how many years did yesterday’s Mad Cow provide for California boys and girls? A cow filters through her udder 10,000 liters of pus, proteins, & dead white blood cells each day. See: http://www.notmilk.com/m.html One cannot donate blood if he or she has spent more than two weeks in England, home of the original Mad Cow Disease outbreak. If one cannot donate blood because the infectious mad cow disease protein (Prion) can be passed in the blood; AND; If Mad Cow Disease sometimes has a 40 year incubation period; AND; Since Mad Cows are clearly in our milking herd before their lethal diseases are detected; THEN; Do you still lack the wisdom and continue to drink milk or eat concentrated dairy cheeses, butter, and ice cream from animals you know to be diseased? BUT; The good news is twofold. First, dairy is delicious. Second, once infected with the human form of Mad Cow Disease, death comes rapidly. The bad news? There is no bad news. Mad Cow Disease can save our Social Security and pension funds and give America a financially strong future. Robert Cohen http://www.notmilk.com

Are “DIY Slaughter Hobbyists” Destroying Your City?


Are “DIY Slaughter Hobbyists” Destroying Your City?

A small but vocal group in Oakland, California thinks so. I beg to differ.

—By Kiera Butler MotherJones.com

| Thu Feb. 2, 2012 3:00 AM PST
 few weeks ago, my friend was handed a flier (PDF) at a farmers market in Oakland, California. It’s from a local group called Neighbors Opposed to Backyard Slaughter that wants the City of Oakland to forbid people to raise livestock on their property. Around here, urban farming is a pretty hot issue; a nonprofit called City Slicker Farms has been promoting DIY food production for several years, and author and farmer (and Mother Jones contributor) Novella Carpenter brought the practice into the limelight with her 2009 book Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer, about her experiences at her Oakland farm……
 

Zwischen Streichelzoo und Schlachthof – Ein neues Buch von Hanna Rheinz


leisure park Tripsdrill near Cleebronn in sout...

Image via Wikipedia

Rheinz, Hanna:

Zwischen Streichelzoo und Schlachthof

Über das ambivalente Verhaeltnis zwischen Mensch und Tier

Mensch und Tier – eine Beziehung voller Widersprueche!

Wir lieben und verhaetscheln unsere Heimtiere und lassen “Nutztiere” in Fleischfabriken wie gefühllose Automaten vegetieren.

Hanna Rheinz beleuchtet die ganze Bandbreite dieser überraschend tiefgruendigen Beziehung und zeigt mit der noetigen Prise Humor, wie das Tier in all seinen Facetten zum Spiegelbild des Menschen wird.

Koesel Verlag 2011 ca. 19 Euro

Dairy Ignoramus


This micrograph of brain tissue reveals the cy...

Image via Wikipedia

Ask the Dairy Expert (Dairy Ignoramus)

“It isn’t pollution that’s harming the environment. It’s the impurities in our air and water that are doing it.” –

 Dan Quayle A new strategy of the dairy industry is to create YouTube videos in which farmers are asked and then answer questions for school kids. In this video, a dairy ex-spurt was asked: How much water does a cow drink each day and how much milk is produced?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYZL0U54Ouo

 This video was probably used as an example of how not-to-do arithmetic by second graders. Clearly, the video was directed at children as the target audience. During the moment that the farmer demonstrates that the cow has a four-chambered stomach (at the 35 second mark of the video) which ferments and digests fiber, the illustration refers to those digestive organs as ‘tummies’. Is that the word you use while conversing with adults? My own tummy aches from watching this video.

The dairy expert responds that a cow eats 50 pounds of food each day and drinks 17 gallons of water. A seventeen gallon bucket of water weighs 150 pounds. At the 1:08 point of the video, the expert explains that each cow produces 9-10 gallons of milk each day. At the 1:20 mark of the video, he explains that the cow is milked twice each day and produces 4-5 gallons of milk at each milking. Oops! Today, the average cow produces 24 quarts per day, not 9-10 gallons. That’s 53 pounds of milk per day for the average cow, or 6 gallons. (Note to dairymen: There are four quarts in a gallon.) What then happens to the 12 gallons of water that does not end up in milk containers? That extra 12 gallons of water weighs 106 pounds and ends up as urine. Multiply that times 1,000 cows on a typical factory dairy farm and 9.2 million cows in America.

That information might piss off nearby neighbors who get their drinking water from wells. Cow urine produces ammonia. Cow feces from 50 pounds per day of feed produces methane. Wastes pollute air breathed by anybody in the vicinity of a dairy farm operation. It’s the reason that you must keep your windows closed while driving through Tulare county, California. Some expert! Actually, the “dairy farmer: is quite the expert, and I recognized his name. Bill Wavrin’s dairy farm was the home to the first case of Mad Cow disease identified in America. Couldn’t the dairy industry have found anybody else to do this ridiculous video? If you look closely, you will notice that Farmer Wavrin is wearing a Darigold shirt.

Darigold is one of the largest milk co-ops in America, representing over 700 dairy farms. In June of 2011, Darigold was fined many thousands of dollars for the criminal act of intentionally dumping ammonia into a clean stream and killing salmon and other wildlife. Darigold was also sentenced to “community service” which they satisfied by paying a negotiated fee of $10,000 to the community in which the damaged stream runs through.

If somebody pitched today’s column to a Hollywood producer for a future movie, the details of the plot would be rejected as being udderly unbelievable. “Facts sometimes have a strange and bizarre power that makes their inherent truth seem unbelievable.” – Werner Herzog

Robert Cohen http://www.notmilk.com