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Ralph Greenland - WSPA Digital Content Editor
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Our disaster response team is on its way to Vanuatu, to assess the impact of Tropical Cyclone Lusi and plan how best to help animals and communities affected. Since it struck, Cyclone Lusi has travelled the length of Vanuatu, impacting all six provinces of the country. More than 100,000 people have been affected, which is over a third of Vanuatu’s whole population. Several deaths and missing people have been reported. Animals in Vanuatu are especially at risk during storms like this one. Cattle in Vanuatu generally graze freely around coconut palm plantations, rather than being kept in pens. This means... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2014 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Last week, a barge containing bunker oil spilled 200,000 gallons on the waters and shore of Estancia, covering four communities or "barangays". The fumes were and still are dangerous enough to have forced the evacuation of over 100,000 people, now living in a dozen small "tent cities". These facilities are nothing but tents in muddy lots, with no possibility for the holding of animals, now left behind in the exclusion zone. Access to this exclusion zone is restricted to short periods wearing masks. However, we’ve identified farm and domestic animals left behind and in need of assistance. Check out Director... Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
A dog sniffing among the rubble of a house in Guiuan, Eastern Samar. In early November 2013 Typhoon Haiyan (also known as Typhoon Yolanda) hit the Philippines causing mass devastation. I told you a few days ago that thousands of animals could need our help in Cebu Province. The good news is the immediate part of the work we need to do is smaller than that. However, there are still up to 4,000 animals in remote areas (including livestock and companion animals) in need. We have 25 vets on the ground fanning out across the north end of Cebu Island... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Sunday, October 13, is the International Day for Disaster Reduction, and we’ll be celebrating. With nearly 50 years’ experience of safeguarding animal welfare in disasters, we know that responsibility for animal management in disasters lies first with local and national governments. In order to achieve the greatest impact for millions of animals and protect the livelihoods of communities in which they live, we will continue to convince governments worldwide to integrate animals into their emergency plans. Our vision is to ensure animals and the people who depend on them are protected from disasters. In order to best protect, we must... Continue reading
Posted Oct 11, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Disaster Management Veterinary Officer, Sergio Vasquez, looks over alpacas which have no shelter to protect them from the cold weather in Bolivia's Andean region. An intense drought that began in 2012 has been declared a disaster and national emergency by the Bolivian Government. Our Disaster Animal Response Team has travelled to Pelechuco district in La Paz province to support the most badly affected communities. It’s here, high in the Andean mountains, where animals such as camelid, alpaca, vicuna and sheep, fundamental for livelihoods and wool production, are most at risk. Rainfall and melting ice help maintain pastures in the mountains... Continue reading
Posted Oct 8, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
A disaster response volunteer greets Demzy Hodgson, a leader in the Miskito community. Communications Manager, Marco Calvo, has been chatting with our team in Nicaragua, and NGOS Fundación A.Mar.Te and Accion Medica Christiana. Together, we are training leaders of Miskito indigenous communities in veterinary care and preparedness measures, designed to reduce suffering in the event of future disasters. Last month, our disaster response teams began working with communities in the North Atlantic Autonomous region (RAAN) of Nicaragua, following a series of tropical storms. Serious flooding has affected thousands of animals used for used for trade and consumption, many having died... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
In June this year, severe flooding and landslides hit Northern India. This was the country's worst natural disaster since the 2004 tsunami. Our disaster response team is now on the ground and responding to the animal welfare need. After days of heavy rainfall, the state of Uttarakhand experienced a combination of devastating floods and sudden landslides. Many other regions also experienced severe weather, but it was Uttarakhand that was worst hit with 95% of casualties in the area. We now know that communities in the region experienced tragic losses. In total, 580 people have lost their lives, over 4,000 have... Continue reading
Posted Aug 15, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Last month saw the biennial WSPA Disaster Management Training Event take place in Naivasha, Kenya. Below, Kate Biddlecombe, Disaster Operations Officer for WSPA International, discusses the event’s success and why high quality training like this matters to animals. Jambo from Kenya! After some long tiring flights and finally landing into Nairobi, the WSPA disaster response team were taken to Naivasha to begin the biennial disaster management training event. The event’s aim was to ensure all team members gained high quality understanding of up to date health, safety and security knowledge, for implementation across all operational activities. Upon arrival into Naivasha,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
In June this year, our Asia Pacific Disaster Response team, carried out an emergency assessment in the Changthang Region of Northern India. As a result, we are now coordinating an intervention to benefit 50,000 animals in the region and up to 360,000 animals indirectly, in Leh District. Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Recent heavy rains in Ecuador have meant over 3,000 rural families affected in the Santa Ana District after the main river in the zone burst its banks. Crops were absolutely destroyed by the flooding and many animals are currently suffering skin infections, pneumonias and diarrhoeas. After the declaration of the state of emergency, a DART team from neighbour country Colombia -where our South American office is based in- flew to Ecuador to evaluate the animal welfare need. While the weather again played havoc with the itineraries and they had to spend many hours being detoured to different airports, our WSPA... Continue reading
Posted May 9, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Die WSPA leistet Katastrophenhilfe bei der Dürre in Indien. Menschen haben sich zusammen mit ihren Tieren in provisorischen Lagern eingerichtet. Dort werden die Tiere mit Futter und medizinischer Hilfe versorgt. Einige Menschen zeigen dem Team der WSPA ihre Tiere. Continue reading
The plume of ash and smoke stretches miles into the atmosphere The eruption of the San Cristobal volcano on Wednesday December 26th, 2012 caused the Nicaraguan authorities to order the evacuation of several hundred people living near it –most of them famers. Officials declared an amber alert for five sq. km (two sq. miles) around the volcano, which began spewing ash and gas two and a half miles into the sky. The plume affected the eastern communities located within the 10 miles from the crater. Most of these communities suffered ash rain fall affecting not only the animal fodder availability,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2013 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Für uns ist es immer tragisch, vom Leid tausender Tiere im Falle einer Naturkatastrophe zu hören. Umso schockierender ist es, wenn Tiere mutmaßlich brutal und unnötig durch Menschen gewaltsam attackiert werden. Dies war der Fall innerhalb einer Auseinandersetzung zwischen ansässiger Gemeinden im Gebiet um den Tana Delta Fluss in Kenia im letzten Monat. Während dieses gewaltsamen Übergriffes wurden Menschen und Tiere mit Macheten und Speeren attackiert. 48 Menschen und mehr als 600 Nutztiere starben dabei. Dieser Konflikt beruht auf einer langandauernden Auseinandersetzung zwischen der Viehhalter-Gemeinde der ‚Orma‘ und der Landwirtschafts-Gemeinde ‚Pokomo‘ über die Regelung des Grasens der Rinder. Die WSPA... Continue reading
Die WSPA half fast 8,300 Tieren und deren Familien auf Haiti. Unser Katastrophenhilfe-Team ist auf der karibischen Insel im Einsatz nachdem Tropensturm ‘Isaac’ schwere Fluten und Überschwemmungen mit sich brachte. Continue reading
Reported from the field: Carlos Quesada Close to 8,300 animals in Haiti, and the families who depend on them, were helped by WSPA in this vulnerable Caribbean country, hit by the Isaac Tropical Storm last week. One-by-one farmers from Bonga and Grand Fond, the two areas most affected by Isaac, came to the WSPA disaster response team with their cows, pigs, horses and sheep, to receive medical treatment and advice for their animals. “Almost all international non-governmental organizations in Haiti help people, but it’s hard to find one which helps animals. By helping us on the field, WSPA has shown... Continue reading
Posted Sep 10, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Yesterday, at 8.42 local time, a powerful earthquake hit Guanacaste, a popular tourist destination in Costa Rica, known for its pristine beaches and nature and marine reserves. A tsunami alert was instantly declared bringing fears of widespread catastrophe, but early reports confirm there was very little damage. Marco Calvo, our Communications Manager in Costa Rica describes how he felt when the quake hit. “I was listening to the morning news on the radio when I heard the announcement that an earthquake was about to hit, not far from where I live. Seconds later I felt the earth begin to move... Continue reading
Posted Sep 6, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Das WSPA Katastrophenhilfe-Team hilft den Tieren auf den Philipinen. Die Straßen in Angono, einem kleinen Dorf des Stadtstaates Manila, sind mit provisorischen Holzblanken bebaut, damit man sich in dem überfluteten Gebiet fortbewegen kann. Die Blanken schützen die Menschen und Tiere zumindest teilweise vor dem stinkenden Abwasser, was nun in den Straßen steht und gegen die Häuserwände drückt. Moskito-Larven und Barsche schwimmen durch das Wasser, wo vorher Gehwege waren. Die Menschen und ihre Tiere balancieren vorsichtig auf den wackeligen Brettern, um nicht in das verschmutzte Wasser zu fallen. Ein junges Mädchen balanciert mit ihren Tieren auf den provisorischen Brettern über den... Continue reading
We walked through Angono village today on elevated, makeshift bridges the community built to cope with flood waters. They stand about five feet above the ground, over stagnant, brackish water that pushes up against people’s homes. Mosquito larvae and tilapia fish occasionally break the murky surface as they swim through what were once lanes and walkways. Overhead, the people and their animals balance carefully on temporary platforms, with one eye always on the reeking water that surrounds their homes. A young girl in Angono village balances on a makeshift bridge along with her animals. Angono villagers receive food for their... Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
There has been extensive flooding in Haiti after Tropical Storm ‘Isaac’ passed over the southern part of the country at the weekend. Our colleagues have travelled to Haiti to assess the situation of almost 28,000 animals are believed to be at risk. We will be delivering some essential veterinary care for animals. This includes teaching owners how to use medicines in order to alleviate stress in their animals and reduce outbreaks of disease which commonly spread following natural disasters such as this. Our team will also assess what further help the animals might need and provide support to people on... Continue reading
Posted Aug 30, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Already weak, emaciated pigs and other livestock will struggle to survive the winter without proper food or outside help. Since our last update, our response team in Thailand have been given the green light to provide emergency feed and assistance to thousands of animals affected by the on-going drought in North West Vietnam. Over 60,000 animals in the Yen Thuy District are continuing to suffer from a lack of food after 70% of the spring harvest crops were destroyed by the arid weather conditions. This is having a significant impact on the health and well-being of local communities. In addition... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Our response team based in India has been busy working in Assam, alongside the Department of Animal Husbandry and community leaders to help farmers and animal owners in the flood hit areas. So far we have set up six of the seven planned veterinary health camps which have already benefited nearly 1,000 animal owners and nearly 24,000 animals. We have also distributed surgical kits and 875 bags of rice bran (animal feed)in the flood affected areas directly benefiting 1,203 households, and nearly 10,000 cattle and pigs. We expect to distribute a further 1,520 bags of rice bran this week. The... Continue reading
Posted Aug 6, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Following an assessment of some of the most flood affected districts in Assam, India, WSPA has responded with immediate veterinary care and feed supply to protect the farm animals (mainly pigs, goats and cows) affected in the Dhemaji district. Approximately 1,322 animals have already died from the unprecedented floods and a further 1.7 million animals have been affected across more than 3,000 villages in Assam. According to local reports, the floods are the worst in three decades and more than 2.2 million people have been forced to leave their homes. WSPA’s assistance will help to save nearly 34,000 animals, as... Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
Vietnam An estimated 65,000 people in the Yên Thủy district in Vietnam are being affected by drought. These communities rely almost entirely on agriculture (crops and livestock) for their livelihoods. The damage to crops and less grass or hay means that the cattle, buffalo and pigs living in the affected area are potentially at risk. Yên Thủy is a rural district of Hoa Binh Province in the north western region of Vietnam. Drought has been on-going since May 2012. Located in a mountainous area with little rainfall, the region’s topography makes it prone to droughts every year. However this year’s... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
As part of its commitment to supporting the community and lifestock in Chihuahua, WSPA is investing in water management for the drought-stricken area of Chihuahua, in the north of Mexico, where livestock continues to struggle for survival. Following our recent reports it’s now been over two years since rains have fallen in the area and there is no guarantee that the wet season will come about this year. The government is planning to distribute 2.800 tons of maize which will benefit 400 small producers. WSPA is funding the development of two new dams in the area which were given the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 25, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog
While our work continues assisting farmers and their livestock in drought-stricken regions of northern Mexico, we have also been monitoring an area of the country that is under threat of a possible volcanic eruption. The Popocatépetl volcano, located approximately 45 miles (72 km) southeast of Mexico City, has been particularly active over the past two weeks. It is currently rated as a yellow alert, and we are closely monitoring any increase in activity or escalation of the alert level. A remote assessment was recently conducted by our disaster response staff in the Costa Rica office, and we are moving forward... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2012 at WSPA - Animals in Disasters Blog