Archive for the ‘Animals’ Category

Telling visitors about the resident cheetahs during feeding time

I let this blog slide in favor of another one I set up for foreign adventures, most recently, a volunteer stint at Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia. My employer, the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation, generously sponsored me.

It was an amazing month caring for orphaned cheetahs that raise awareness for their wild counterparts, who struggle with drought, habitat encroachment and human-wildlife conflict. When I wasn’t up to my elbows in dirty work, I also served as a copywriter and editor.

You can read about my experience at On the Road with Susan.

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Thanks to their farmer, Milena and Rahel still have their horns. (Susan Misicka, swissinfo.ch)

Thanks to their farmer, Milena and Rahel still have their horns. (Susan Misicka, swissinfo.ch)

Can one man persuade 100,000 fellow citizens to care whether cows have horns or not? If the man is as bull-headed as Swiss farmer Armin Capaul, the answer is yes.

With his rosy cheeks, reddish-blond moustache and white beard, farmer Armin Capaul is a colourful character. A winter’s day finds him in layers of patterned knitwear and a red neckerchief. His bright blue car blasts country-rock music.

“Haven’t you heard of J.J. Cale? He’s a soulmate of mine,” says Capaul, referring to the late American singer-songwriter. I admit that I haven’t, and worry it’s a bad start to our visit. But he just laughs, and laughs some more when he sees my eyes widen at the sight of the narrow and twisted road leading to his 17-hectare farm perched high in the Bernese Jura. It’s home to cows and a bull, as well as goats, sheep, donkeys, dogs, cats and chickens.


Read the whole story here on SWI swissinfo.ch.

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Fur trim and coats are trendy, but are consumers aware of the grim conditions for most of the animals involved? A Swiss label law aims to inform, but many say that an outright import ban is needed.

It’s cold and everyone walking around Bern is dressed warmly, except for one woman. Clad in her underwear plus a scarf and boots, she’s also wearing a sign that says, “I’d rather go (almost) naked than wear fur”. She’s been collecting signatures for a petition to ban the import of fur products made with animal-torturing methods.

“It’s going really well – people have been very supportive. I’ve got so many signatures that I’ll have to get more forms,” Daniela tells swissinfo.ch. A moment later, a woman with a fur coat and bag walks past, giving her a dirty look.

Click here for the full story.

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Pets or meat?

Hercules the kitty liked visiting these rabbits, who were being raised for meat.

Hercules the kitty liked visiting these rabbits, who were being raised for meat.

Europeans are uneasy in the aftermath of a scandal involving horse meat found in hamburgers and lasagna. A few weeks ago I wrote a piece about how people are comfortable eating some animals and not others.

Click here to read “Animal lovers question morality of eating pets“.

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In this week’s swissinfo.ch podcast, I focused on:

– a noisy Lenten tradition

– happy laying hens

– and a man who found a way to outsmart ovulation.

Click here to listen.

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My cat Buddy — adopted at an animal shelter

I dedicated a recent swissinfo.ch podcast to the animal kingdom; click here to listen to it.


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Spotted this little bunny hopping in somebody's front yard

Just in time for Easter: a video made by Raffaella Rossello, a colleague of mine at swissinfo.ch. She asked me to be the narrator for this piece on rabbits that jump hurdles.


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