i just don't know the source

  • Shiro: Whoa, whoa, whoa. Boyfriend? I don't want to be Keith's boyfriend.
  • Matt: Um. Then what do you want?
  • Shiro: I don't know. I just want to be with him. All the time. I want to hear about his day and tell him about mine. I want to hold his hand and make him smile.
  • Matt:
  • Shiro: But I don't want to be his boyfriend.
  • Alya: Good morning!
  • Rose: Good morning everyone!
  • Juleka: ...Good morning.
  • Marinette: Good morning!
  • Mrs. Bustier: Good morning, students!
  • Chloe: You all sound like robots! "Good morning, good morning"
  • Spice it up!
  • Nino: HEY MOTHERFUCKERS

anonymous asked:

I'm pretty new here, and I don't actually know much about dinosaurs (just followed this blog because it seemed really cool and interesting) so could you explain what shrink-wrapped means?

Of course! See, modern animals have a lot of muscles, fat, fluff, etc, and end up looking very little like their actual skeleton. For example, look at how much fluff owls have:

(Source)

However, lots of palaeoartists completely ignore this! They basically stretch skin over the bones and call it a day. One especially bad example that was featured on @palaeofail is this poor pterosaur:

It barely has room for its digestive system. It’s definitely missing the air sac system that allows it to breathe. It’s got virtually no muscles on the arms - how does it fly?? - on the head (no wonder its mouth is open. It has no jaw muscles to close it!), on the torso (it needs to flap), or on the legs (walking) It doesn’t have any fat at all, so it’s definitely starving (maybe because it can’t fly or close its moth?). The skin is much too thin; you can see all of the bones and its wing membranes should be much, much thicker. And it’s missing the hair-like pycnofibres that should be covering its body!

Many palaeoartists have started to strike back at this by drawing modern animals like we might draw them if we found their bones:

(Source)

[House cat]

(Source)

2

Sehun blowing you kisses to wish you a good day ahead  (´。• ω •。`) ♡

  • Akaashi: Who broke the coffee pot? I’m not mad, I just want to know.
  • Hinata: ... I did. I broke it.
  • Akaashi: No. No, you didn’t. Kuroo?
  • Kuroo: Don’t look at me, look at Tsukishima.
  • Tsukishima: What?! I didn’t break it!
  • Kuroo: Huh, that’s weird. How’d you even know it was broken?
  • Tsukishima: Because it’s sitting right in front of us and it’s broken!
  • Kuroo: Suspicious.
  • Tsukishima: No, it’s not!
  • Lev: Psst... If it matters, probably not...Bokuto was the last one to use it.
  • Bokuto: Liar! I don’t even drink that crap!
  • Lev: Oh, really? Then what were you doing by the coffee cart earlier?
  • Bokuto: I use the wooden stirrers to push back my cuticles. Everyone knows that!
  • Hinata: Please, let’s not fight. I broke it. Let me pay for it.
  • Akaashi: No! Who broke it?!
  • Kuroo: *whispering* Well, Kenma’s been awfully quiet this whole time.
  • Kenma: REALLY?!
  • *Yelling ensues*
  • *Camera pans to Akaashi*
  • Akaashi: I broke it. It burned my hand, so I punched it. I predict that ten minutes from now they’ll be at each other’s throats with war paint on their faces and a pig head on a stick
  • Akaashi: Well, good. It was getting awfully chummy in here.
how to spot the signs

**check moon, venus, and rising sign too though bc y’know

aries // it’s probably fairly easy to spot that aries. they’re the one that screams aggressively when their pottery project crumbles in their hands. the one that always wants to try ziplining or bungee jumping or skydiving. 

in private - aries in private are one of those signs that are very similar to the way they are in general or in public. they don’t feel the need to have to cover up their emotions or their thoughts. if you’re with an aries in private, you will probably notice that they’re more chill than you thought they were, though. and not as angry as they seem. 

flirting - the ones that subtly flirt but still seem to get their message across. flirts a lot too, though. anytime they can get close to their crush, they’re flirting.  

features - they probably have like one really striking feature. like the most beautiful hair you’ve ever seen or really great natural eyebrows. 

taurus // a taurus may be a little harder to spot. they probably have a plant/nature aesthetic. they’re the ones who can be outgoing and shy at the same time. they’re quite calm and collected. thinks through their decisions before making them. suggests hiking and camping a lot. 

in private - taurus in private are probably sweeter than they are in public, especially if you’re close to them. many of them may also be a little more emotional than you’d think. sometimes they’ll talk for hours, sometimes they’ll barely say a single word. 

flirting - you probably won’t even notice a taurus flirting. they’re quite subtle about it, because it makes them feel awkward. this doesn’t mean they’re bad at flirting though, usually they’re able to become good friends with their crush, and things may go from there. 

features - soft features that all fit together really nicely. soft, rounded nose. cute eyes. not too strongly defined eyebrows. 

gemini // ah, the gemini. it’s probably one of the popular girls in your class, or the guy who’s the class clown. they’re fun, energetic, and definitely quite talkative. they have a lot of nice things to say about people. 

in private - at first, gemini seems just like they are in public. talkative, got a lot of stories up their sleeve, smiles a bunch. but pay attention to their words. they’re different. in private, they’re more comfortable with sharing a lot of gossip. they’re probably also a lot smarter than you thought they were. may react differently to the same thing than if they were in public. 

flirting - a gemini is a pretty solid flirter. they’re good at never making their crush bored. they rarely tell the same story twice, even if in reality it’s the same story with a few tweaks here and there. 

features - a gemini is just cute, man. beautiful smile. bright and alert eyes. 

cancer // a cancer may be a little bit hard to spot. they’re either super shy and reserved, or pretty talkative and outgoing, but not much of an in-between. probably the ones that get a little offended by a joke, and can take criticism pretty personally and to the heart. 

in private - a cancer is one of those people you want to know privately. like someone you want to spend one-on-one time with. they’re cuddly, cute, sweet, ad comforting. if you’re close, you’ll probably be able to notice the transition from being awkward in public to smooth af in private. 

flirting - a cancer may not be the best flirter of all time. but, they may get their way. they probably clam up and sweat when being close to their crush. but hey, they’re cute and lovable so maybe it won’t be hard for their crush to notice them.

features - a cancer has soft features. they look really kind. the type of person that if you’re in a crowd and you have to ask someone for the time, you’d ask them because they seem like they won’t be too bothered by you and will be nice about it. 

leo // not hard to spot a leo. usually loud and confident, but not usually in the cocky way. they’re always with a group of people, and probably the one that’s talking. super fun and adventurous. the kind of person to bring ten bags of marshmallows to the campfire. 

in private - a leo in private may surprise you from the way they seem in public. probably one of the most different from in private to in public compared to all the other signs. they have insecurities hidden. they’re not always super happy. may get stressed out a lot. needs to know you’ll always be there for them.

flirting - leo is one of the best flirters hands down. their crush probably is already attracted to them anyways. good storytellers, pretty hilarious. can make their crush feel like them flirting is almost addictive. they’re also obvious with their flirting. 

features - a leo is beautiful. could rock the catwalk or the red carpet. they may enjoy wearing a lot of makeup (not necessarily to ‘cover up’ but more so bc they just like to) but are just as glamorous without. 

virgo // a virgo looks at the small details rather than the big picture. probably the perfectionist in the class, who has perfect handwriting and good grades. the one that makes good, smart decisions. knows what’s going on in the world. 

in private - a virgo is more willing to try new things and will say things that surprise you when you first have one-on-one time with a virgo. even though they’re fairly entertainig themselves, they’ll always beg you to entertain them or tell them some good jokes. 

flirting - a virgo is also a pretty subtle flirter, and seems like just a friend, which is okay because they may say some creepy things that would be super embarrassing if their crush knew they were flirting with them. you know like or “i love the neighborhood you live in”. don’t like leading people on.

features - a virgo likes to focus on their appearance. good fashion sense, perfect makeup, astounding hair. 

libra // a libra is probably the one you automatically feel like is kind of “fake” as a first impression. they’re probably not “fake”, they just try too hard to cover up their real emotions and show different ones instead so they don’t seem detached. pretty intelligent and a good talker. 

in private - a libra is another sign you want to know personally. you just always want to know what they have to say and their opinion on things. they can be either mature or childish depending on their mood. very peaceful. doesn’t like fighting with the ones they love. 

flirting - a libra is pretty good at flirting. they can be the touchy type, so they’re probably not as subtle. they have such a natural charm to them and are so intriguing. easy to get along with.

features - a libra probably has gorgeous eyes. you can tell they’re thinking about something important all the time. probably very light (not in color, in terms of feeling ig). 

scorpio // a scorpio is intense. they’re highly opinionated and good at arguing, and have clear emotions. they can be either loud or quiet. everyone is probably either aesthetically attracted to a scorpio, or attracted to their personality. they’re just cool. 

in private - a scorpio in private is intense. they want to know a lot about you. they also want you to know a lot about them. they’re very real and honest people. don’t say “no offense but…” to them. straightforward (but not rude) people work well with them.

flirting - a scorpio is definitely a touchy flirty, but they’re so good at flirting they can control whether their touching seems more friendly or more physical. it’s their presence that intrigues their crush more than their words. like a scorpio doesn’t have to say anything and their crush probably won’t even be bored. 

features - a scorpio is sexy, fierce, and mysteriously beautiful. they’ve got that perfect smirk, pout, smile, etc. down. 

sagittarius //  a sagittarius could be a little hard to spot. they can be fairly stubborn, though many other signs can be too. they also usually feel like they’re right, and pretend to listen to your side. pretty outgoing, a little weird but in a way that makes you crave it. 

in private - when it comes to humor- sags are underrated. they’re pretty damn funny. they’re also very opinionated. if you mean something to them though, they’ll protect you well and put your before themselves. 

flirting - a sag is neither good nor bad at flirting. sometimes they try, sometimes they don’t. they believe that if it’s meant to happen, it’ll happen. with this in mind, they probably don’t flirt too much with strangers. 

features - bold features all around. irresistible smile and eyes. strong nose. 

capricorn // a capricorn always gets their work done- even if some of them procrastinate until the last minute. they’re only talkative around the people they’re comfortable with. is into more old-fashioned things. very nice, but stubborn and opinionated. 

in private - sarcastic, witty, and enjoyable. they’re the kinds of people you take for granted but once they’re gone (they don’t like giving more than second chances), you’ll realize how much you miss and need them. good at giving direction, but not at giving advice. very realistic and often pessimistic. good friends. loyal friends.

flirting - they don’t even flirt. they probably flirt with their eyes and admire from afar. depending on their crush (the kind of person they are) the aura they have may be really intriguing and attractive, or they may not even be noticed. 

features - gorgeous hair. they’re so pretty but so underrated.

aquarius // idealistic. talks about the future and ignores the past. probably one of the smartest people you’ll talk to- not just academically but socially as well. may be a little weird but people love it. people just know them, they’re well known. they also know that they’re funny, but they don’t like taking the role of class clown. know that when receiving a compliment from them, it’s genuine and will make your day. 

in private - an aquarius in private is someone you almost feel like you need to know personally. if they let you in, consider yourself lucky- but don’t think you’ve broken down their walls. they’ve got secrets. they’re so interesting that you never get bored, even if you’re talking about yourself, the way they look at you is heart-warming. can be both dreamy and realistic.

flirting - an aquarius may or may not be a good flirter. they tend to get better with practice. however, other people may not notice them flirting. they treat their crush like a friend and signals may be a bit messed up. 

features - aquarians may have wonderful features that you miss if you don’t pay attention close enough. sweet smile and knowing eyes.

pisces // a pisces is that daydreamer. the one who speaks with “if” instead of “when”. very calm and sweet. a good person to befriend if you want someone loyal and adorable. 

in private - a pisces in private is pretty much the same as when they’re in public. they love to listen to you and offer emotional support rather than giving advice. they tend to be pretty gullible. very loving and easy to love back.

flirting - a pisces is a touchy flirter, but an awkward touchy flirter. they’ll go to touch your shoulder but quickly retract as soon as their fingertips brush. it may be obvious when they’re flirting. they tend to ramble and maybe even stutter. 

features - a pisces is just a big ol’ ball of cuteness. no specifics. just awesome. 

anonymous asked:

Hello!! This may be a weird question but I too am heavily interested in birds but unlike you, I cannot draw them as well. :,^( If it's not too much work (if it is just ignore this, i don't mind), do you know of any good references or sources to learn more about birds from facts to anatomy? I know this is a pretty wide range so again, I totally understand if you can't! I just thought it was worth an ask. Thank you so much!!

i don’t really have any specific reference places but here’s some things i do. 

 drawing birds is arguably one of the hardest animals because of their feathers. unlike fat and fur that folds to the body in a way that’s usually readable to whats underneath, feathers sort of create a ‘bubble’ around the body which makes a lot of body parts indistinguishable to where one ends and another begins. so its important to always think in terms of skeletal anatomy:

birds are dinosaurs and therefore reptiles. looking at birds this way, it’s a lot easier to see their evolution.

with that in mind, say we wanna draw this dude. owls are pretty tough because their outward appearances are so deceiving.

we’ve got a neutral pose, feathers are generously surrounding most of the body so its no sweat, we don’t really know whats going on. but we can hide it. but now we want to make him move and look cool. without really knowing whats going on we might get stuck on something like this:

its always kind of stiff and frustratingly unrealistic. mostly this is because we just don’t have enough knowledge of the skeletal structure to work with. eyeballing anatomy on our first drawing might get something like the left, more than anything people aren’t generous enough with leginess of birds:

 owls do indeed have regular proportioned necks with the rest of their bodies. and their skulls are like that of any other stereotypical raptor under their mask of feathers (minus their freaky eye sockets and ears)) they can open their mouths wide just like a hawk or eagle can. it’s important to remember that birds with large wingspans do not magically lose their length when hidden. they are just conveniently folded in against their bodies.

knowing this we can try again. suddenly things seem to click in place more and have a believable-ness to them.

the rule of thumb for most birds is they have less body mass and more leg/neck than one thinks. they are lanky dinosaurs.

when we are looking at this:

we are seeing this:

with that rule, drawing birds becomes a lot less confusing. with practice you might just eyeball their feathered appearances but if not, going back to skeletal/muscle structure gives the base you need to draw convincing birds.

when it comes to specific body parts, the most challenging part for me personally have always been feet. birds with super twiggy feet are easier because one line per toe is easy to get away with. but when you get to birds with meatier feet, especially raptors, it gets difficult. my way of getting around this is to think of the actual ‘feet’ last. drawing each separate toe first gets confusing because you just find yourself trying to get them to each fit evenly together at the base of the foot. one always seems kind of skinnier or fatter than the others in my experiences, and by the time you correct it the gesture gets muddled and lost.

so i just skip that part until later, i draw talon first.

perhaps this is very unorthodox, but just like artists might square in the hands first on a human before working out the arms, i square in the talons to know where i want them before worrying how they go on exactly.

that way we have a clear gesture captured, and in my experience it is much more readable.

thats’ really all i can think of now in terms of my techniques, i hope this helps :V

wolpasaurus  asked:

I was wondering if you knew anything about the situation with Billy the Asian Elephant at the LA Zoo? I just received an email from the Zoo that a city council motion was filed to remove Billy from the zoo, and they're still trying to fight to keep him. A lot of people claim he appears stressed which is why there's been a big fight to get him moved. I don't really know a lot about elephants so I don't really know what side is best to take or what sources to take seriously (other than the Zoo).

I’ve been following the story of Billy pretty closely. I’m glad you asked - it’s the sort of thing I think is really important to talk about, because people need to understand what’s going on behind the nicely framed stories about animal activism you hear in the media, but I’m never sure how much of that sort of animal industry politics followers are interested in reading. 

The reason this specific instance is so important is because it’s a hell of a lot more complicated than ‘sanctuary vs zoo, which is better for the animals’. The decision to go after Billy - and only Billy, and only right now - looks to me like a really strategic political decision from the animal rights movement, and it falls in line with what I’ve been researching the history, evolution, and MO of the animal rights movement. As I’ve been learning more and more about how animal rights organizations and their partnered sanctuaries conquer and divide to achieve the change they want to see, a very specific pattern of action has started cropping up and this situation exemplifies how they’ve learned to use legislation, the legal system, and the good intentions of the general public to remove animals from zoos. This explanation is going to seem a little bit like jumping at shadows, but this method of petitioning cities to seize zoo animals as assets - and the really conveniently timed fallout that would result from their success - is textbook animal rights organization planning. 

So here’s what you need to know - if Billy is sent to a sanctuary, the LA Zoo would lose their AZA accreditation. They’d likely then be subject to the new wild animal performance law that’s got major support in LA right now, because only AZA institutions would likely have an automatic exemption. The combination of loss of accreditation, potential inability to do public education and outreach, and the ability of the AR groups to spin the situation as ‘AZA kicked them out for being abusive to their elephants’ would massively damage the viability of the zoo as an institution for the foreseeable future… at which point AR groups could easily petition the city to seize more animals from the collection and send them off to sanctuaries, because it’s now “well known” what a horrible institution the LA Zoo is. That would normalize the idea that animal rights organizations and city officials with no professional animal experience know more about animal welfare than the best zoological institutions in the country, and would set a scary precedent regarding what sorts of institutions the public will accept the animal rights organizations condemning and removing animals from. With that sort of potential fallout - and all of the pieces of the puzzle having been successful, individually, within the last decade or so in regards to other animal rights campaigns - this really is not about a single elephant at all. 


AZA has this one really important rule in their accreditation standards, and it boils down to: any zoo they accredit must be considered the experts and have final say over the care of their animals. If anyone external to a AZA accredited zoo overrules that zoo’s choice of care for their animals in any way, that zoo loses their AZA accreditation because they are no longer viewed as having ultimate control over the welfare of their charges. This is really important when it comes to elephants, as the Toronto Zoo lost their AZA accreditation over exactly this situation: animal rights activists caught wind of TZ’s plan to transfer their elephants to a facility in Florida where they’d live in a bigger herd, and petitioned the city council to send the elephants a the Performing Animals Welfare Sanctuary (the same one they want Billy to go to, which has a known history of uncontrolled tuberculosis infections on the property to this day). The Toronto Zoo is a municipal zoo - which means its animals were city property - and the city council chose to claim the elephants as assets, ignore the evidence of animals with active TB already living at the chosen facility, and then overruled the Toronto Zoo staff’s due diligence about what choice would provide the best welfare for their elephants and sent them away to PAWS. Having been overruled by the city council and having lost control of animals in their collection, the Toronto Zoo lost their AZA accreditation. (They later reapplied and were re-accredited). 

So, if the animal rights activists can convince the city council to claim Billy as an asset and remove him to PAWS, it would really damage the LA Zoo as an institution. Their credibility in the eyes of the public would be destroyed, they’d lose exemptions from federal legislation due to losing their AZA status; they’d be forced to pull out of multiple major SSPs (because only AZA institutions are allowed to house animals in the Green level programs, of which LA zoo has number); they’d likely lose grant funding. What’s more, the zoo would then be subject to the recent law banning the use of any exotic animal in “entertainment”in LA, because if has the same structure as similar legislation we’ve seen in other states, only AZA facilities get an exemption. If true, that would mean the zoo would no longer be able to do education and outreach programs with their animals (and this law was backed by PAWS, the organization that runs sanctuary they’re trying to send Billy to). 

There’s a very specific reason that this whole campaign centers on Billy, not all three elephants, which is part of what makes it so clear this is a campaign with an end goal of damaging the LA Zoo’s AZA accreditation. Billy’s two elderly companions, Jewel and Tina, would be far better candidates to be sent to a sanctuary if welfare is really the concern driving the advocacy. They’re rescues from a private owner who were massively underweight and had chronic medical conditions, and it’s not as important for them to stay within AZA’s management as other elephants because they’re too old to contribute to the Asian Elephant SSP. The LA zoo has previously been willing to send older elephants to the PAWS sanctuary without needing intervention from the city council (that story is discussed below), so why is this newer campaign ignoring the elderly females and bypassing the zoo entirely by going to the city council when their welfare would likely be more improved by that sort of move? Jewel and Tina don’t belong to the LA Zoo - they’re officially part of the San Diego Zoo collection and on loan to LA - which means the city council can’t claim them as assets and forcibly remove them. The only elephant at the LA zoo that the LA city council has the ability to control is Billy, and so it’s pretty clear this is about getting the city council to overrule the zoo’s choices in caring for their collection and not about which elephants would benefit most from leaving the zoo environment. 

This is an attempt by the animal rights industry to undermine the LA Zoo as an organization - that much is clear. Billy is just a convenient figurehead and an animal that the public will empathize with while being completely unaware of the the ulterior motives behind the advocacy effort. It comes at a delicate time, too, as the LA Zoo is currently in the process of developing a new master plan for the future of the facility. That’s a future that would be massively impacted by a loss of accreditation and all the potential fallout that would go along with it. 


So that’s the context to the Billy situation, and why people are fighting so hard on both sides of the issue. But what the public really cares about here isn’t the politics, it’s the animal welfare, so here’s a look at history and the welfare of the elephant at the center of all this furor. 

Billy at the LA Zoo. (Photo Credit: San Diego Blogs)

Billy is one of three elephants at the LA Zoo - he’s the youngest, at 32, and the only male. Billy is kept separated from his two elderly female companions, Jewel and Tina, because he’s young enough to still want to reproduce and would injure the elderly ladies if he tried to mount them. However, while the elephants are always separated by a barrier, the exhibit was designed with heavy-duty wire fences that meant the elephants could always be able to see, hear, and touch each other through it. The LA Zoo Asian elephant exhibit is one of the biggest elephant habitats in the United States at 6.5 acres (with almost four acres of yard space), and was opened in 2010 - the construction of a state-of-the-art habitat was part of the resolution from the first time animal rights activists demanded the elephants move to a PAWS sanctuary. 

In 2006, an elderly Asian elephant named Gita died at the LA Zoo. It’s not clear what led to her ending up in position she did, but she was found laying on her back legs with her front legs stretched in front of her. Nothing they did could entice her to stand back up, and she eventually died as her body weight crushed her own tissue and the toxins released during that process overloaded her kidneys. (While this sounds brutal, it’s worth keeping in mind that this is likely how many elderly large animals die if they lay down for the last time in a position that puts their weight on their own body). Animal rights activists had already been agitating for the LA Zoo’s elephants to be sent to a sanctuary, and they used Gita’s death as momentum to push for Billy and the other female housed there at the time, an african elephat named Ruby, to be transported to a sanctuary where it was claimed her welfare would be much higher than at the zoo. The LA Zoo eventually caved to public pressure and chose to send Ruby to PAWS (keeping their AZA accreditation by doing so voluntarily) where she was immediately housed with other animals without a proper quarantine period, exposed to animals who were TB positive and were not diagnosed until after death, and eventually died herself in 2011 from an unknown disease that looked suspiciously like TB (PAWS declined to send out samples for testing, despite what appeared to be physical symptoms observed during the necropsy). 

Gita at the LA zoo in 1999 in the old exhibit. ( Photo Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Billy remained at the LA Zoo after Ruby left, and the organization undertook a 42-million-dollar elephant exhibit renovation with the intention of bringing in another breeding male and a number of females as part of the Asian Elephant SSP. In 2007, local activists sued to halt construction of the exhibit with the goal of removing elephants from the LA zoo permanently and forcing Billy into a sanctuary - after a case that was drawn out for a number of years and repeatedly stalled exhibit construction, the judge assigned instead that the LA Zoo was allowed to continue exhibiting elephants but was required to exercise them frequently, make regular exhibit improvements such as tilling the soil, and banned the use of tools such as bullhooks and guides at the facility. When the new elephant exhibit opened in 2010, the LA zoo decided to put breeding plans for Billy on hold in order to house a pair of bonded female Asian elephants - Jewel and Tina - who had recently been removed from a private owner who had neglected their medical care. 

The three elephants share access to the large, heated elephant barn and have 24/7 access to five unique outdoor yards. Each yard has a substrate of soft sand that is tilled regularly to keep it from becoming compacted and hard - the shifting motion of the sand helps keeps the elephants in shape as they walk over it - and each yard has unique features like puzzle feeders, bathing pools and waterfalls. 

Browse and treats are placed at unique locations around all the yards each day, encouraging the elephants to explore their environment anew each morning. In addition, a comprehensive environmental enrichment program makes sure the elephants always have novel objects and stimuli to interact with and a daily training session (which the public is able to watch as a demonstration most days a week) keeps them mentally engaged by practicing foot care, grooming, practice for any veterinary behaviors that might be needed, as well as strength- and balance-focused exercises.

The AZA accreditation standards - which cover general animal policy in 34 pages, and use another 12 to cover animal interactions with the public or use in education programs - have dedicated 32 pages specifically to the regulations regarding elephant husbandry, training, nutrition, body condition, enrichment, and welfare assessments. As a large AZA-accredited zoo that frequently falls under the celebrity-studded, critical eye of the local populace, it’s inconceivable that Billy’s care (and that of Tina and Jewel) is not in accordance with these highly detailed requirements. 

Photos of the new LA Zoo elephant exhibit. (Photo credits: The Portico Group).

The LA Zoo’s elephant exhibit, finished in 2010, was designed by The Portico Group, a design firm founded in Seattle, WA in 1990. The Portico Group’s exhibit designs consistently awards every year within the industry for their incorporation of the newest animal welfare science and management technologies as well as educational and interpretive options. Their design for the LA Zoo is on par with the quality of the rest of their designs, and features a similar amount of yard space for the elephants as the design they created for the widely-praised Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Africa expansion that opened in 2013. 

Billy in his habitat at the LA Zoo. (Photo Credit: AP Photo/Richard Vogel)


One of the biggest reasons people express a concern for Billy is a head-bobbing behavior he’s been known to perform his entire tenure at the LA Zoo. The public is aware that repetitive behaviors (called stereotypies) can be signs of low quality welfare, and often worry that means that Billy isn’t being well taken care of at the zoo. However, one thing that isn’t commonly known about sterotypical behaviors is that once developed, they rarely go away once the animal is in a better welfare situation - which leads guests to often misunderstand an animal’s behavior as it relates to their current care. 

The LA Zoo has studied Billy’s head bobbing behavior over the years, and concluded that it appears to be an anticipatory behavior rather than one brought on by stress, as it mainly occurs when the elephant is awaiting the arrival of food, expecting a keeper interaction, or getting ready for movement into another area of his habitat. They also found that Billy had been noted to be displaying the head bobbing behavior when he came to the zoo at age 4 and that it was not something not something he developed during his life at the facility. 

Just because the behavior doesn’t mean that Billy has low welfare in his situation at the LA Zoo doesn’t mean the staff just want to leave him to bob and sway: to help decrease the amount of head-bobbing Billy does and engage him in a range of other behaviors, the keeper staff change their husbandry routine slightly each day and provide enrichment at different times in order to keep him investigating his environment instead of standing and waiting for regular occurrences. 


At the end of the day, Billy’s welfare does not appear to be the impetus pushing this current furor around “rescuing him” - he’s a convenient figurehead for what appears to be a well-coordinated attempt to undercut the LA Zoo’s credibility and accreditation status. 

But even though the actual welfare of the elephant is irrelevant to the organizations pushing this agenda, the general public is now very invested in understanding Billy’s welfare in regards to the outcome of this situation. 

The sanctuary animal rights activists are recommending Billy be sent to has multiple issues with basic elephant husbandry and medical treatment. PAWS was unable to evacuate their elephants in when threatened by a massive wildfire in 2015, due to their policy against doing even the most basic husbandry training with their animals that would have allowed them to be walked into a trailer or crated for transport. Instead, the animals were sheltered on site as the fire came within a few miles of the facility, putting them through massive amounts of stress and resulting in probable smoke inhalation. PAWS frequently take in animals that are reported as healthy upon transport, only to report having to euthanize them within a few years due to crippling chronic conditions. Most concerning is that PAWS appears to be plagued by frequent tuberculosis outbreaks among their elephants, potentially with multiple strains of the disease, despite their stated adherence to biosafety protocols -and that they have had at least one animal die while sick with active, contagious TB infections that were only discovered post-mortem. 

Billy is currently housed in a modern elephant habitat that was created in accordance with best practices for elephant management by outstanding architects - a remodel that was done specifically in response to the original welfare concerns about LA Zoo’s elephants in the late 2000′s. He has access to state-of-the-art veterinary medicine and is cared for by a dedicated team keepers who practice medical treatment behaviors, like foot care, with him daily to ensure that he can quickly receive treatment in a stress-free setting if it becomes necessary in the future. LA Zoo’s elephant keepers work hard to keep Billy active, mentally stimulated, and make sure he has plenty of positive social interactions with both the human and elephant members of his herd. 

If the goal of the general public is Billy’s welfare, he is far better off in a habitat designed for him to inhabit with the staff he has known for a better part of two decades than being sent across the country to a facility with massive red flags in their elephant management program just to fulfill a political movement’s agenda of damaging the facility that holds him. 


Citations under the cut. 

Keep reading

fluffy-firefly  asked:

What is your stance on veganism outside of bees and elitism? I've been reading into it because some claim that it's bad for the environment not to be vegan or it's bad for your body and I don't know what sources to trust, but you've always been an accurate source of info, but I was just wondering your opinion?

You do you, man. If you feel better on a vegan diet, go for it. Just don’t try to get me to stop eating animal protein. Vegan diets don’t supply some B vitamins, but that can be supplemented.

But honestly, animal husbandry goes hand in hand with farming plant based foods. Chickens are going to lay eggs even without a rooster. Those eggs will just rot unless collected and eaten. And you want chickens, because they are A+++ natural pest control in gardens, and chicken dung is an excellent fertilizer to improve soil fertility for more plant food. And chickens die, eventually; why waste the meat? Even if you never slaughter a chicken, there is no good reason not to eat eggs and the chickens themselves once they get old and die. Save the feathers; those make good stuffing for pillows and mattresses.

Same for goats. Goats can live on marginal land where no crops can be grown, eat almost anything, and produce high quality milk, far more than a baby goat can drink. So, drink the milk, eat the goat when it dies. Compost the dung and use as fertilizer. Use the leather for whatever you need leather for.  

Pigs can live off kitchen scraps. During WW2 in England, it was common for people to form a “Pig Club” to fatten a pig on scraps and then butcher it and share the meat. It was a good way of turning waste into food. Tan the hide, use the leather.

Veganism isn’t better for the environment. Going VEGETARIAN to a large extent, where you still eat eggs and cheese, might be a good compromise, and would make sure you get the proteins and B vitamins a vegan diet lacks. But honestly, the idea that veganism is somehow better for the environment is a myth.

  • Shiro: Honey, where's my Paladin armour?
  • Allura: W-H-Y do you need to know?
  • Shiro: We need to form Voltron!
  • Allura: Uh-uh, don't you think about running off to do no daring-do, we've been planning this dinner for two months!
  • Shiro: The galaxy is in danger!
  • Allura: My evening is in danger!
  • Shiro: Tell me where my armour is, Princess! We are talking about the greater good!
  • Allura: Greater good? I am your WIFE. I'm the greatest good you're ever gonna get!
  • Prompto: You really don't have any fears?
  • Noctis: just one
  • Prompto: Oh??
  • Noctis: dying alone
  • Prompto: Noc-
  • Noctis: it's okay i know it won't happen
  • Noctis: ardyn will be there bleeding out next to me
  • Prompto:
  • Prompto: We need to get you help.
  • Gryffindor: YOU'RE DATING SLYTHERIN?!
  • Hufflepuff: ...yes...
  • Gryffindor: How?! You're so nice and sweet and Slytherin's so...Slytherin!
  • Slytherin: Dude, I'm standing right here.
  • Gryffindor: Oh, shut up, you know what I mean.
  • Slytherin: Yeah, you're right. I'm just as surprised that Hufflepuff likes me as you are.
  • Hufflepuff: Oh, shut up, both of you.
  • Gryffindor: Well? Why do you like someone so...so...Slytherin?
  • Hufflepuff: Sly's not that bad! You just don't know them like I do! They may seem all mean and tough but, on the inside, Slytherin's just a big ol' teddy bear.
  • Slytherin: *blushes*
  • Gryffindor: HOLY SHIT IT HAS EMOTIONS!
  • Slytherin: *blushes more* *glares at Gryffindor* Fuck off, asshole.