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Sharon Guynup: The United States Has A Tiger Problem

Elizabeth Novogratz 16 January 2020 1


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There is a tiger problem in the USA. 

There are more tigers in captivity in the US then exist in the wild. The number of American tigers lies somewhere between five and ten thousand. We don’t know the actual number because they mostly go unregulated. Sadly, most of these tigers live in cages in private homes, backyards, garages, or in cages in roadside zoos. Many of them are inbred, malnourished, and sick. There is absolutely no reason that this should be the fates of one of the most majestic creatures on the planet. 

What have we done? 

And, why are we still allowing it? 

Journalist and author, Sharon Guynup and photographer, Steve Winter spent two years investigating these questions for a story called, The Tiger Next Door, for December’s issue of National Geographic. If you haven’t read it, read it. Sharon’s story is astounding. It involves the criminal underworld, wildlife trafficking, murder, and thousands of captive tigers living sad pathetic lives all over the USA. America has a serious problem with captive wildlife, and what we’ve done to tigers is cruel, dangerous, and absolutely unnecessary. 

Sharon is a hero for tigers. She has been reporting on them for years, mostly tigers in the wild, until 2016, when her investigation into the famed Thai Tiger Temple for National Geographic published strong allegations of illegal wildlife trade, causing Thai officials to confiscate the 147 tigers living at the temple and shut the operation down. 

Sharon and I met in New York in December to talk about her story. The two-year investigation that she and Steve Winter did is mind blowing and absolutely devastating for anyone who cares about wild animals. 

There are ways to combat this crisis right now. The first is to not participate in any wildlife tourism that includes selfies with wildlife or any type of handling of wild animals, and the second is to get behind and support The Big Cat Safety Act. 

Species Unite is a podcast focused on those who fight the good fight on behalf of animals around the globe. It's a collection of the stories of the people who are healing the world one creature at a time.

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Peter Knights: The Next Pandemic Is On It’s Way, Unless We Shut Down Wildlife Markets

Elizabeth Novogratz 21 April 2020

There’s not much that we can be certain about in such uncertain times but there are a few things. One is that unless we change the way that that we treat animals, the next pandemic is most definitely coming. Only next …continue

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Proudly brought to you by: Elizabeth Novogratz 21 April 2020