Zoo and Aquarium Professional, Educator, Cosplayer, Writer and B.A. in Psychology whose got a lot to share when it comes to animals, zoos, aquariums, conservation, and more.
This is The Way: An Argument for Romani Representation in Live-Action StarWars Projects.
On May 1st, I posted a StarWars fan-cast idea on my Instagram page to see how some of my followers would react. The casting idea I had in my was for Sabine Wren, one of the main protagonists of the 2015 animated series StarWars: Rebels. The casting choice I had in mind for Sabine was a Spanish-Roma actress named Hiba Abouk. This resulted from a head canon that believed she was of Roma or Southwest Asian origin. In addition, Ms. Abouk herself coming very to resembling a live-action version of the animated character, and I even tagged both Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni’s Instagram pages hoping they could take Hiba into consideration.
Death at SeaWorld: The Series?
To whom it may concern, I’m writing on behalf of the zoo and aquarium community regarding an upcoming project that has been in development as a series for the last few years. They based the show in question on an anti-zoo book by David Kirby, and it’s an investigative piece that profits off the 2010 freak accident at SeaWorld Orlando. While the 10-part series is due for a 2022 release, there have been calls by both zoological professionals and patrons for streaming platforms to not distribute it for various reasons.
ORCA: A Racist Animal Rights Fraud
ORCA (Oceanic Rescue Center and Awareness), is an animal rights extremist group that claims to “create empathy, concern, and greater participation” of cetaceans and other marine wildlife issues through animal rights literature and signing of petitions and letters as forms of action. They also claim to have a rehabilitation center that is aimed at rehabilitating cetaceans. However, when I looked at their website in hopes to locate the supposed facility, I found what was actually at its given address. ORCA’s address was actually the address to two small businesses that are in San Francisco, California. One was a health consultant center, and the other was a software company. There was no sign of a wildlife rehabilitation facility being at that address.
Seaspiracy: An Open Letter
To Whom It May Concern, I would like to first start out by saying this regarding my intention behind this open letter: back in 2019, I volunteered for a New Hampshire-based marine wildlife organization that aimed to protect marine habitats, promote substantial seafood consumption, and reduce plastic waste across New England. My summer with them surprised me to see how most New Englanders aren’t aware how throwing out that Poland Springs bottle in a riverway could mean death to seagulls and other marine wildlife, or how purchasing tuna from a company that doesn’t practice substantial and humane methods can do more harm than good for both wildlife and local fishing communities. While the intentional goal was to make the New England public better marine stewards for our local marine ecosystem, we had no intention to encourage people to go “vegan” or attempt harm on local fishers who have earned a living off these waters for generations. So, when I heard about Ric O’Barry’s latest movie being used by extremists to target these little non-profits for not having the same animal-rights “values” as the film, I took it upon myself to share my thoughts on it.
Young Marine Wildlife Artist Reimagines Shamu Stadium
A few years back, SeaWorld announced it was planning to expand its existing killer whale habitats at the parks in San Diego and Orlando. The newly expanded habitat would have given the mammals additional space to thrive and breed in a habitat that simulated a natural habitat-like setting. However, after the parks announced it would “phase out” the orca program, the project would never become a reality. A controversial “ban” on keeping killer whales under the care of scientifically accredited zoos and aquariums in the state of California.
Jeff Lowe, the Other “Tiger King” Under Fire
On October 4th, 2020, Jeff Lowe, owner of the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park, lost his license to continue housing and raising exotic animals in the state of Oklahoma. This came because of a USDA inspection where he got charged for allegedly starving and burning animals under his care. As a result, they have removed several animals including 11 wolves and two bears from Lowe’s custody, and have they have sent them all to other facilities. Meanwhile, Lowe is currently opening a new facility dubbed “Tiger King Park” on the Oklahoma-Texas border but because of the Pandemic, will operate as a film set until it is safe again to open it to the public.
The Real Queens of Wakanda VIII: She’s Almost There
I can remember when I was doing my internships for college, I would often document some of my experiences working at the facilities on my old blog, and other social media pages that I had. However, out of respect for some policies that these facilities had regarding social media practices, I had to limit myself to posts approved by my supervisors such as interactions with the animals in our care, the animals themselves, or us just exploring the different animal habitats that the facility offers the public to experience. Whenever I posted something about my internship experiences, they all focused on what it was like to work with the animals that were under that facility’s care. I kept anything regarding meetings and other sensitive information out of it.
Animal Traning In The Time of COVID-19: Words of Wisdom By The Welfare and Husbandry Innovative Training
The COVID-19 Pandemic has not been kind to the zoo and aquarium community, for it has seen many facilities be forced to either furlough or layoff their staff members. Meanwhile, some facilities have begun to experience some serious financial problems to the point where they were forced to shut down for good. Those facilities are currently struggling to re home their animals at surviving facilities, who would otherwise be euthanized if such facilities were not found.
#WeLoveYouTrainers: A Personal Story
People across social media are standing up for zoo and aquarium professionals by sharing some of their very own personal stories of how we empowered them to know and love animals through our love for the animals we care for daily and how we educate them on the same species they love so dearly. There were even a few posts by the actual trainers themselves as they share how grateful they were for the love and support of their fellow patrons and how much it meant to them, especially during these times of uncertainty.
The Real Queens of Wakanda VII: Into the Unknown
In our latest Queens of Wakanda entry that is in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we get to know a marine mammal trainer who is currently based at the Miami Seaquarium in Key Biscayne, Florida. Lauren Beltran’s journey is truly one that involved her traveling “into the unknown”.
The Real Queens of Wakanda VI: An Odyssey
For many people who pay a visit to a zoo or an aquarium, there is no connection greater than one between people and animals. This is because whenever people get the chance to see a training session take place at a facility, they get to see more than just a typical animal “show”, they also get to see a true bond between animals and their caregivers. This is because these caregivers know what the animals under their care want and need to continue to thrive. For Californian Claudia Nathaly Erreguin, feeling an animal’s desire to connect with people is so pure, it makes people want to both care for them and protect them at the same time.
The Real Queens of Wakanda V: Birds of a Feather.
Our Hispanic Heritage Month edition of The Real Queens of Wakanda continues with the story of Ms.Nicolle Mierischi. She is an aviary keeper at Zoo Miami where her primary focus involves providing care for the resident kiwi and waterfowl that call the facility home. She first started as a volunteer before she eventually made her way to the top as a level 2 keeper this past July. Two months later, she opens up about her experience working at Zoo Miami and how she got to where she is today.