Complaint 6/2/13

June 2, 2013 in Admin

Dear Cause Members,

The FWC Legal Staff and a State Attorney Office’s prosecutor have provided the opinion that the use of rabbits as live prey items does not violate Florida Statutes regarding animal cruelty. Therefore, no follow- up investigation into the matter of rabbits being used as prey items by wildlife rehabilitators is warranted at this time.  (see previous complaint response)

Please copy and paste the following complaint and add your own words at the bottom to personalize when signing. Complaints and requests should always be respectable and factual, we do not honor otherwise.

(Authority references listed below letter) Please ask for an email confirmation and case number for follow ups.
Email your complaints to:
Mike.Troelstrup@MyFWC.com, Amy.Schmidt@MyFWC.com, !homepage@sao13th.com,  rick.scott@eog.myflorida.com, millerl@hillsboroughcounty.org, MDeeson@wtsp.com

Complaint:

Subject:   Big Cat Rescue Complaint / Live Feeding Complaint

Amy Schmidt/ Inspector General: Mike Troelstrup,
CC: Governor Rick Scott, Mark A. Ober, Commissioner Les Miller, Mike Deeson

Attention Major Amy Schmidt/ Inspector General: Mike Troelstrup,

Thank you for the response, however, it is not understood why the Facts and Professional Letters provided continue to be ignored by the FWC and the FWC Inspector General.

Regarding Complaint #1: 
Jamie Veronica Murdock” was issued a warning on March 17, 2011,
for a violation of Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.) 68A-9.006.
Posting videos of wild animals in rehabilitation status.

The same Exact videos Jamie Veronica Murdock was issued a warning for on March 17, 2011 referenced by FWC being under the control of BCR on their YouTube Account – were also posted on various BCR internet accounts on the date of March 17, 2011 and still remain on the same BCR accounts today June 2, 2-13.   The duplicate links are provided for your convenience as they have not been taken down.  The bobcats in the videos were In Fact under rehab status, BCR was given a warning,  yet FWC continues to dismiss these complaints and ignore the facts provided since Oct 3, 2011 when the first complaint was filed.  This video of live predation is also currently posted on the BCR YouTube Account: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb2dwl7z2PA

FWC QUOTE:
“ Investigator Manson’s and Amerson’s advised that the links reviewed in the inspection were not under the control of BCR,  were not displaying native wildlife, were not public, or were not displaying an animal undergoing rehabilitation. Three out of the fourteen links were not reviewed by the Investigators during the September 6, 2012, inspection. On March 11 and 12, 2013, FWC, DLE Captive Wildlife Office staff reviewed the other three links. These three links were also determined to be displaying non-native bobcats and were images of some of the same non-native bobcats displayed in some of the other links mentioned. No violations were found at that time”.

a.  Please advise how the Various Big Cat Rescue Internet Accounts are not under the control of Big Cat Rescue?

b. Please Clarify where the referenced rule states that is is permitted to exhibit non-native bobcats undergoing wildlife rehabilitation:
3. “Wildlife undergoing rehabilitation or medical treatment shall not be exhibited. Permittees may keep wildlife with permanent physical impairments for educational display under permit in accordance with Section 379.3761, F.S., and Chapter 68A-6, F.A.C.”

c. Please clarify if FWC is stating that since the 3 Alabama bobcats are Deceased these videos of wildlife in rehabilitation status are permitted to remain on the internet, videos of wild bobcats torturing and killing innocent domestic tame rabbits.  Can FWC please provide the location of the rule in the Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.) 68A-9.006 that states it is permitted to exhibit deceased wildlife in rehabilitation status.

d. FWC was sent the following email copy that clearly shows BCR stating they are in control of their videos and photos on the internet, please advise why this email was ignored?

On Fri, Mar 22, 2013 at 3:26 PM

Dear Howard,

Can you please advise if the BCR videos of bobcats in rehab status killing domestic rabbits found on various websites are copyrighted; as I am requesting permission to post them on my website?

Linda Sue

From: Howard Baskin
To: “bunnyflo”
Date: Sunday, March 24, 2013, 6:57 PM

We own the copyright to our videos and photos of rehab bobcats. You do not have permission to use them.

Howard Baskin
Advisory Board Chairman
Big Cat Rescue
813-889-7244 Direct
813-505-5565 Cell
Howard.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org

The following videos of bobcats in rehabilitation status are currently posted on BCR Internet Accounts and are in violation of Florida rule, please advise why these videos have not been addressed by FWC:
68A-9.006

The Big Cat Rescue Website:
!!!WARNING!!! This video shows scenes of live animal predation.
http://bigcatrescue.org/2010/bobcat-kittens-the-outside-world

Big Cat TV: BCR Vimeo Account: Warning this video shows scenes of live animal predation
http://vimeo.com/channels/bigcatrescue/14805317

BCR DailyMotion Account: Warning this video shows scenes of live animal predation   http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xeqtoe_bobcat-kittens-the-outside-world_animals

BCR DailyMotion Account: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xe32wo_bobcat-kittens-vs-rats-chicks-mice_animals  (Bobcats in rehab)

Carole Baskin also has videos under another Youtube Account that is called the: Secret law of Attraction.
Here you will see live rats being tortured and killed by the bobcats in rehabilitation. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-Fo2BYd1NI&feature=plcp

Big Cat Rescue Myspace Account:
Bobcat Predation Photos: http://www.myspace.com/1bigcatrescue/photos/albums/album/2782648
BCR Photos of Bobcats during rehab: http://www.myspace.com/1bigcatrescue/photos/albums/album/2759997

BCR Openfilm.com Account:
WARNING!!! This video shows scenes of live animal predation.
http://www.openfilm.com/videos/bobcat-kittens-the-outside-world/

BCR Stupidvideos.com Post:
!!!WARNING!!! THIS VIDEO CONTAINS SCENES OF LIVE ANIMAL PREDATION-!! The Big Cat Rescue- Bobcat Rehabilitation Program. We currently have three individual bobcats that we are rehabilitating.
http://www.stupidvideos.com/video/animals/Bobcat_Kittens__2011_Rehab_UPDATE/#334552

BCR WordPress Account:
!!!WARNING!!! This video shows scenes of live animal predation. The three bobcat kittens are released into their outside rehab enclosure!
http://bigcatrescue.wordpress.com/2010/09/08/bobcat-kittens-the-outside-world/#more-5822

BCR Article.wn.com Account: Bobcats in rehabilitation status:www.bigcatrescue.org The three bobcat kittens are released into their outside rehab enclosure! published: 08 Sep 2010, author: SecretLawAttraction
http://article.wn.com/view/2012/07/03/Fla_inmate_released_to_nursing_home_p/

BCR blogspot.com Account:
!!!WARNING!!! This video shows scenes of live animal predation. The three bobcat kittens are released into their outside rehab enclosure! http://bigcatrescuer.blogspot.com/2010_09_01_archive.html

Christopher Poole – Staff of Big Cat Rescue: Viddler.com Account
Several videos of Bobcat kittens in rehabilitation status, eating status, playing status and killing live animals -predatory status.http://www.viddler.com/profile/bigcatrescue

BCR YouTube Account: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb2dwl7z2PA
2.  In Review of FWC’S references, not One reference provided condones using SPECIFICALLY TAME DOMESTIC RABBITS as live food.  In fact; below is a letter from the President of NWRA regarding the use of DOMESTIC RABBITS in wildlife rehab. 

Response from NWRA: Bobcat Feeding Protocols
Friday, February 3, 2012 7:45 AM
From: “nwra@nwrawildlife.org”

Dear Linda,

This email is in response to your inquiry dated January 17, 2012, regarding the feeding of domestic rabbits to bobcats during rehabilitation.

You asked, “Can you please clarify – the NWRA condones feeding specifically live tame domestic rabbits to rehabbing bobcats or wild big cats in rehab?”

NWRA neither condones nor condemns the feeding of live domestic rabbits to bobcats undergoing rehabilitation for release into the wild.

Sandy Woltman
President, NWRA

Complaints and Referenced Facts:

Does FWC believe that contact with a tame domestic rabbit would in any way prepare a bobcat or panther for pursuit of a speedy wild rabbit?  If so, the FWC Biologist may not have credible knowledge of the biology or natural history of the wildlife they purport to “rehabilitate.”  Domestic rabbits do not mimic the behavior of wild prey by any stretch of the imagination, and this fact could be more detrimental to the cat as far as survival, not to mention this practice is teaching wild predators to hunt down domestic rabbits in the back yards of families and farms.

To further this argument and fact:
Domestic rabbits are not a part of the wildlife nutrition.  Wild rabbits have holes to hide in, not to mention familiar with their born territory.  Tame Pet Domestic rabbits are taken from a safe cage, put into a false environment, one designed to keep big cats enclosed, they are already terrified because of the unfamiliarity of the environment, they have no wild instincts to protect themselves or any means of fighting which makes them an easy kill from their fear and helplessness.

a.  We would like to ask FWC Biologist to please elaborate how providing tame domestic rabbits to wild predators is logical hunting training?

There is no logical or practical reason to throw live domestic rabbits to any captive big cat, enrichment and even kill training for the captive cats can be provided in hundreds of different ways that do not involve the torture of sentient, intelligent creatures.
The fact that the FWC condones this barbaric practice as do the facilities they support only shows lack of value in the lives of anything but captive cats, but this does not make those other species less deserving of protection under the law and domestic rabbits that were bred to be food does not make them in any way related to the wild rabbit.

Factually wild predators are strongly instinctual, and don’t need the live prey stimulus to tap into their wildness or train them to be hunters.  Florida’s beach mice are  endangered due to feral tame domestic cat predation, yet FWC expects the public to believe fierce big cats need killing training.   The National Bobcat Rescue & Research Foundation intakes and rehabilitates more than 15 times the number of bobcats than any other facility in the nation and teaches Ethical with Alternatives to Live Feeding, as do many other wildlife centers including the Cheetah Rehab in S. Africa and many others which prove this practice is not necessary.  Has FWC contacted the National Bobcat Rescue & Research Foundation in its research into live feeding?

A Bob cat is a survivalist and in fact a down right scavenger that also eats dead carrion, there is no logical reason for any authority to state this fierce predator would starve if not given live food in rehab.  Bobcats are opportunistic and will prey upon a wide variety of animals, food sources include mice, voles, rabbits, gophers, mountain beaver, yellow bellied marmots, fawns; also insects, reptiles, birds, and carrion which is fed on for days.
http://wdfw.wa.gov/living/bobcats.html

FWC QUOTE:

“FWC carefully reviews complaints and has given your complaint much consideration. Making changes to rules and regulations requires scientific research, input from stakeholders and the public, and consistency with FWC’s mission of “Managing fish and wildlife resources for their long-term well-being and the benefit of people.”

The Cause Members would like FWC to make changes to the rules and regulations which condone and promote the unnecessary and barbaric practice of live feeding.

a. We would like to ask FWC please reference the scientific research into alternatives to live feeding, to please note if they have contacted the professional references given to them proving live feeding is not necessary, and to please note the responses given to FWC by these professionals.  http://causes.worldpeacemeet.com/stoplivefeeds/letters-facts/

b. We would like to ask why FWC continues to ignore valuable input from the public requesting an investigation into stopping this unnecessary barbaric animal cruelty?   When reviewing the facts and letters presented why does FWC ignore them and continue to support and condone the feeding of Tame Pet Domestic Rabbits (not a part of the wild cats diet) to wildlife in rehab, a practice that is not only cruel and inhumane but detrimental to the cats survival upon release?

c. We would like to once again ask FWC to please reference the authorities they continue to claim state it is an acceptable and advised practice to feed SPECIFICALLY TAME LIVE DOMESTIC RABBITS to wild predators in rehab.

d.   We would also like to ask FWC to provide the number of bobcats taken in to BCR since the year of 2003 and the number of successfully released bobcats since 2003.

Live feeding is outdated, barbaric and a serious animal cruelty issue and for this reason 5, 707 people have signed the following petition asking FWC to stop condoning the torture and killing of Tame Pet Domestic Rabbits, signatures are available upon request:
http://www.causes.com/actions/1673922-ask-fwcc-to-stop-condoning-the-live-feeding-domestic-rabbits-to-animals-in-wildlife-rehab

For The Rabbits,

Linda Sue
——————————————————————————————————————————————————-

 

 

 

Authority References:

FloridaFish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

FWC Inspector General
Mike Troelstrup, Inspector General
620 South Meridian Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1600
Phone: 850-488-6068
Fax: 850-488-6414
Email: Mike.Troelstrup@MyFWC.com

Major Amy Schmidt, Director of Investigations
(Certified Inspector General Investigator, Certified Accreditation Professional)
620 South Meridian Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1600
Phone: 850-488-6068
Email: Amy.Schmidt@MyFWC.com

 

Governor Rick Scott
rick.scott@eog.myflorida.com

 

Commissioner Lesley “Les” Miller, Jr. — District 3
millerl@hillsboroughcounty.org
Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners • PO Box 1110, District 3
Tampa, FL 33601-1110
Phone: 813-272-5720
Fax: 813-272-7048

Mark A. Ober
State Attorney – Thirteenth Judicial Circuit
Tampa Office
419 N. Pierce Street
Tampa, Florida 33602
(813) 272-5400
E-mail: !homepage@sao13th.com
http://www.sa18.state.fl.us/page/other-florida-state-attorneys.html
Office Hours:8:30 am – 5:00 pm

Mike Deeson is the Senior Investigative Reporter for 10 News,
http://www.wtsp.com/bios/article/117643/72/Mike-Deeson

 

 

 

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