Does China care?

Dear Friends

Born Free Founder and Chair of Trustees, Virginia McKenna, today commented on new information contained a report produced by Sky News, on zoos in China, “I have been to China on several occasions and have witnessed this cruel practice myself. With the Olympic Games just a year away, China has a short window of opportunity to tackle these issues and faces the very real possibility that many of the millions of sports enthusiasts travelling to the country in 2008 will return not with memories of the Olympic spectacle, nor of China’s undoubted ancient civilisation and culture, nor of the sparkling new China that has emerged in the last few years, but of the animal welfare horrors that still go on, cause such suffering, and offend us all.”

It is not the only reason China and animals are in the news at the moment. Certain ‘tiger farmers’ in China, together with some officials from the State Forestry Administration, are promoting the idea that there should be a reopening of tiger parts trade in China from their tiger farms. The results could be catastrophic for wild tigers and a coalition involving all the major players in tiger conservation, including Born Free, known as the Campaign Against Tiger Trafficking, are calling on the Chinese government to reject such proposals and confirm their commitment to the total ban.

It seems crazy to me that when Born Free and other groups are working so hard in the field to try and protect tigers, there could be those who want to make the commercial trade in their body parts widespread, convenient and acceptable.

I am travelling to The Hague for the CITES meeting on Monday 28th May and from then on I will be doing a daily blog from the Convention as decisions are taken which could affect the future of endangered species right around the world.

So, blogging off for now but much more soon.


See footage here,,30000-1266775,00.html

PS Offset your air travel carbon emissions with Born Free – I do! Go to

6 Responses to “Does China care?”

  1. Ursula Griffin Says:

    I was appalled to see the footage on Sky TV news last night,(22nd May), of live animals being fed to tigers at a chinese zoo. I forced myself to watch so that I could tell others of the sheer cruelty and barbarism involved. This resulted in a sleepness night for me, due to being haunted by the images of a poor, confused domesticated cow being inexpertly mauled and eaten alive by semi-tame animals, who did not know how to hunt or kill efficiently as their wild kind do. The screams of the live chickens being used as bait for the tigers was also truly horrific. This was done in the name of entertainment for the onlookers who held their children up to the windows of the buses in the enclosure to get a better view; another generation being brutalised to accept cruelty to animals as the norm. I shall be writing to the chinese ambassador to voice my disgust at this sort of treatment of living sentent creatures.

  2. G L Field Says:

    I don`t understand why some people think that the way to `entertain` us is to expose us to the totally unnecessary cruelty and suffering of another living animal……don`t we have enough exposure to unwanted human conflicts/wars in the world as it is!

    For a supposedly `civilised` race we act in a very barbaric and uneducated way sometimes and I`m disgusted to asociate myself with such people.

    As much as anything else animals have a very important part to play in the ecological balance of our planet and should be respected as such.

  3. Faye Says:

    I watched the clip on the internet with not having access to Sky. Here is the link to the clip for anyone who has not seen it.,,30000-1266775,00.html

    I am horried, disgusted, repulsed and very angry about what is going on in China – it must STOP, NOW.

  4. Nicola O'Donoghue Says:

    Like my fellow writers, I was completely traumatised by the footage shown on Sky News a couple of weeks ago. I have been replaying the images in my mind since and cannot fail to be upset, horrified and extremely angered by what I recall. The idea of this barbarity being a family spectator sport appalls me. I am only thankful that this issue has been highlighted; this is a perfect opportunity for the world to take action to put an end to such cruelty.

  5. Mrs Julie Sharpe Says:

    I was horrified to watch the sickining scenes of domestic animals being fed to semi wild tigers. Please is there anything we can do to bring this to the attention of the olympic committe they’re our best hope of stoping this.

    I’m also sickend when I watched a bear in a dress pulling a car in the heat just to amuse visitors. Please lets put a stop to the and same the cruel people who are doing it.

  6. Sue Nightingale Says:

    I agree with all the comments made here by others – as I too am truly numbed, sickened and disgusted – to say the least – by all the abuse and deliberate cruelty I have witnessed and read about over the last few years, particularly in China, and can only hope and pray that the day when all this stops is very near. These sick and wicked people have so much to answer for. The world would be a much better place without them. I will also be writing to the Chinese Ambassador and strongly encourage as many others to do so too.