Irish Council Against Bloodsports slam €200,000 grants to Donegal fur farms

first_imgThe Irish Council Against Bloodsports has expressed its “disgust” at large grants to fur farms in Co Donegal.Two Irish fur farms have received over €200,000 in state funding.Tazetta fur farm near Glenties has received at least six annual grants over the past decade from state body Údarás na Gaeltachta. The grants were provided under employment and capital grant schemes.The funding began in 2009 when the company received a €10,400 grant. The following year, Údarás na Gaeltachta allocated over €26,000 to the fur farm.This was followed by €28,261 in 2014, €58,149 in 2015, €7,090 in 2016 and €3,560 in 2017. Figures for 2018 are not available.In its lists of “enterprises which received grants”, Údarás outlines that the grants to Tazetta relate to “saothrú fionnaidh” (“cultivation of fur”). Tazetta is one of Ireland’s three remaining fur farms where tens of thousands of mink are permanently caged and gassed to death with Carbon Monoxide at six months of age.Another fur farm, Roxy Ltd – which is now closed down – received €82,123 from the taxpayer-funded Údarás na Gaeltachta as “grant assistance” for “feirmeoireacht mhinceanna” (mink farming).The funding was approved by Udaras in 1984 (the year the fur farm was first licensed) and over the following two decades tens of thousands of pounds/euros were handed over to the fur farm, located in Killybegs.A spokesperson for ICABS said “Shame on Údarás na Gaeltachta for disregarding the cruelty of fur farming and channelling funds into it.“We are calling for an end to these grants and renewing our appeal to the government to respect the wishes of the vast majority and ban fur farming.” ICABS say the majority in Ireland want fur farming ended, with a recent Red C opinion poll showing that 80 per cent of Irish adults are in favour of a ban.Veterinary Ireland has joined the calls for a ban, condemning fur farming as cruel.Irish Council Against Bloodsports slam €200,000 grants to Donegal fur farms was last modified: April 27th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalgrantsICABSÚdarás na Gaeltachtalast_img read more

Fish Species in African Lake Diversified Rapidly

first_imgTwo related articles in the Public Library of Science (PLoS) show that a large number of species can branch out of a small population in a short time.  Hobbyists familiar with tropical fish appreciate how wide is the variety found within Cichlids.  In the first article,1 the author alleged that in the last 15,000 years, the number of cichlid species living in the lake grew from a handful to hundreds.  Nearby Lake Malawi, which is supposedly much older, boasts no better variety of cichlids.    Just as dog breeders select for a desired trait, the environment that each group of fish finds itself in selects for genes that cause the fish to survive well in that environment.  Isolation of the new “breed” of fish causes the combination of genes to be preserved.  The surprise to scientists was the speed at which this happened, compared to their expectations:Though Lake Victoria cichlids appear millions of years younger than their counterparts in nearby Lake Malawi, both groups display an enormous range of physical and behavioral traits.  This staggering diversity in such young species provides compelling evidence for adaptive radiation, which occurs when divergent selection operates on ecological traits that favor different gene variants, or alleles, in different environments.  When divergent selection on an ecological trait also affects mate choice—promoting reproductive isolation of diverging populations—ecological diversity and speciation may proceed in tandem and quickly generate numerous new species.Another surprise was to find that natural selection had succeeded in eliminating gene variety in some groups, “fixing” the gene: offspring contained only one type gene, recessive or dominant, and variety has been eliminated:Despite substantial theoretical and some experimental support for such “by-product speciation,” few studies have shown that selection has “fixed” alleles (that is, driven its frequency in a population to 100%) with different effects on an adaptive trait in closely related populations.  But now, Yohey Terai, Norihiro Okada, and their colleagues have bridged that gap by demonstrating divergent selection on a visual system gene that influences both ecological adaptation and mate choice in cichlids.In another paper in PLoS Biology,2 the author demonstrates that it really was the environment that produced the variety of characteristics within the Cichlid population:Divergent natural selection acting on ecological traits, which also affect mate choice, is a key element of ecological speciation theory, but has not previously been demonstrated at the molecular gene level to our knowledge.  Here we demonstrate parallel evolution in two cichlid genera under strong divergent selection in a gene that affects both.  Strong divergent natural selection fixed opsin proteins with different predicted light absorbance properties at opposite ends of an environmental gradient.  By expressing them and measuring absorbance, we show that the reciprocal fixation adapts populations to divergent light environments.  The divergent evolution of the visual system coincides with divergence in male breeding coloration, consistent with incipient ecological by-product speciation.1Gross L (2006), “Demonstrating the Theory of Ecological Speciation in Cichlids,” PLoS Biology 4(12): e449 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0040449.2Terai Y, Seehausen O, Sasaki T, Takahashi K, Mizoiri S, et al. (2006), “Divergent selection on opsins drives incipient speciation in Lake Victoria cichlids,” PLoS Biology 4(12): e433.DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0040433.This is exactly what creationists have been saying all along: it doesn’t take long for genetic variation and the environment to produce the variety of species we see.  All species of canines could have descended from one pair on an Ark a few thousand years ago.  From wolves to Chihuahuas, all dogs are of the “dog” kind, and it didn’t take millions of years for their “adaptive radiation.”  In fact, it could have taken only hundreds of years in some cases.  The environment they found themselves in selected for the traits best suited to that environment.  For an evolutionist accustomed to speaking in millions of years, a mere fifteen thousand years for Lake Victoria to get its variety of cichlids is just a blink of time.  Yet they acknowledge that all these species appeared in this amazingly brief period.  Human skin color could have been selected in a similar short time: light skinned people who could make Vitamin D with less sunlight were selected for in northern latitudes, while dark skinned people who resisted the effects of intense sun were selected for in equatorial regions.    Notice the sleight of mind with terminology in the last quote: “Divergent natural selection”, “parallel evolution”, “divergent selection”, “divergent natural selection”, and “divergent evolution” are used interchangeably to mean the same thing.  We are regularly being conditioned to confuse natural selection with evolution, or, to put it in other terms: micro-evolution with macro-evolution.  Evolution requires new information to be created.  There is no creation of new information here, as the articles admit.  In fact, one of the points the author makes is that the natural selection of the environmental factors often drove the frequency of a particular gene in a fish population to 100%.  All other genes affecting the characteristic had been eliminated.  This is loss of information, not gain – the opposite of what macro-evolution requires.  Surely, the scientists who wrote these papers must know this.  Once again, commitment to evolution is faith in spite of the evidence.—DK(Visited 14 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Nitish’s new team in the saddle in Bihar

first_imgBihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Saturday inducted his new 27-member Cabinet. The team has 14 Ministers from the Janata Dal(U), 12 from the BJP and one from the Lok Jan Shakti Party.Most of the former JD(U) Ministers, including one from the minority community and a woman, are in the new team. The two new faces from the party are Dinesh Chandra Yadav and Ramesh Rishideo. Khurshid, aka Firoz Ahmad, who was Sugar Cane Industry Minister in the previous government, is the lone representative of the minority community, while Manju Verma, former Social Welfare Minister, is the lone woman in the new Cabinet.Among the 12 BJP Ministers sworn in are senior party leaders who had been members of the erstwhile NDA government before Mr. Kumar broke away in 2013.The new BJP faces are Rana Randhir Singh, Braj Kishore Bind, Krishna Kumar Rishi, Vinod Narayan Jha, Binod Singh, Vijay Kumar Sinha and Suresh Kumar Sharma. Mangal Pandey could not take oath as he was away in Himachal Pradesh, having recently been appointed BJP State in-charge.From the LJP, Pashupati Kumar Paras, younger brother of party chief and Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, found a place in the Cabinet. However, Mr. Paras is not a member of either House of the legislature.The Union Minister and his family were present in the swearing-in ceremony. “It is the discretion of the Chief Minister to include anyone in the Cabinet … earlier, my name was decided by the party to become the Minister,” he said.The Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular), led by the former Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, and the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party, led by Union Minister Upendra Kushwaha, did not find representation in the Cabinet.The name of RLSP leader Sudhanshu Shekhar was deleted from the list of Ministers at the eleventh hour “for reasons not known”.Critic sidelinedHowever, party sources told The Hindu that Mr. Kumar was not in favour of including anyone from the RLSP as Mr. Kushwaha, a friend-turned-foe of his, has been bitterly attacking him on every issue. Someone from the HAM(S) could be included later, said a BJP leader.“From the NDA, 16 Ministers will be in the Cabinet … with Sushil Kumar Modi as Deputy Chief Minister. We can still accommodate two more,” senior State BJP leader Nand Kishore Yadav told presspersons.Between the BJP and JD(U) members, the Cabinet has a fair representation across castes and regions, though there is a pr edominance of leaders from Mithilanchal and Champaran.last_img read more