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An Analysis of Dr. Susan Cork & Dr. David Abraham’s report entitled “Review of tuberculosis control measures used at the Performing Animal Welfare Society.

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Presentation on theme: "An Analysis of Dr. Susan Cork & Dr. David Abraham’s report entitled “Review of tuberculosis control measures used at the Performing Animal Welfare Society."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Analysis of Dr. Susan Cork & Dr. David Abraham’s report entitled “Review of tuberculosis control measures used at the Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) Sanctuary, San Andreas, California”

2 Please feel free to follow along: Links to Dr. Cork and Dr. Abraham Report (submitted to Toronto City Council by Councillor Michelle Berardinetti on November 27, 2012): Part 1: c/comm/communicationfile-33606.pdf c/comm/communicationfile-33606.pdf Part 2: c/comm/communicationfile-33635.pdf c/comm/communicationfile-33635.pdf

3 Letter From University of Calgary This letter is dated November 27, 2012. The day of the Council Meeting. No time for the councillors to read the report The report was commissioned by Zoocheck Canada There should be a cover letter to Zoocheck included. Where is it?

4 Executive Summary – Page 3 Dr. Cork and Dr. Abraham were allowed to visit the PAWS facility and EVEN view the quarantined elephants. The staff from the Toronto Zoo were denied access to 3 of the 5 barns and denied a second visit. The current vet keeps comprehensive records. Why haven’t they been shared with the Toronto Zoo?

5 Toronto Zoo Staff visit report

6 From a Toronto Star article by Donovan Vincent (May 27, 2012) “California elephant sanctuary official says no to second planned site visit by Toronto Zoo officials”

7 Executive Summary – Page 3 The report says that the PAWS vet has made every “effort” to follow the guidelines. The report states that some additional biosecurity measures could be considered. It says quite clearly that it is hard to quantify the tuberculosis transmission risk or to predict the consequences of exposure. This is exactly what the report from the Toronto Zoo vet says.

8 From Attachment 3 of the “Supplementary report from the Chief Executive Officer, Toronto Zoo on the Elephant Transfer Due Diligence Review” Excerpt from the Letter Written by Michelle Miller, DVM, PhD (AZA Elephant Taxon Advisory Group Veterinarian Advisor) to Dr. Graham Crawshaw from August 11, 2012.

9 Background – Page 3-4 Goats are periodically brought onto the property to clear vegetation. Do they have contact with the elephants? Could they be exposed to the Asian elephants, then the African elephants? Goats are also carriers of tuberculosis. Studies have been done which indicate TB can be transmitted and contracted via shared Grazing areas.

10 Background – Page 4 This report says that elephants undergo a quarantine period of 30 days. Emails show Toronto Zoo elephants are to be put in the same barn as the current elephants right away. NO QUARANTINE. Ruby was only quarantined for ten days during which time she was able to access the other resident elephants. Photographic evidence shows that the elephants at PAWS are frequently handled with free contact and that handlers walk freely in their enclosures.

11 Introduction – Page 5 Tuberculosis can be potentially spread via fomites such as bedding, food or water sources or feces

12 Introduction – Page 5

13 Section 4 - Page 6 It is a myth that AZA facilities do not adhere to USDA standards

14 Section 4 – Page 7 Four out of eight elephants (50%) are currently in quarantine for tuberculosis. The closest point between the African and Asian elephants is 40 ft. The risk of transmission by fomites and the oro- fecal route has not been considered significant, even though it is a possibility. One of the Asian females is trunk-wash TB positive, one is Stat-Pak and MAPIA reactive and one is NEGATIVE ON ALL TESTS and yet is housed with the TB-positive one.

15 Table 1 – Page 8 Wanda does not react to the Stat-Pak and yet she is housed with the TB-positive Annie. Annie has been at PAWS since 1995 and was found to be TB- positive in 2012. Either she caught TB there or it was allowed to “flare up”. Both cases are negligent. Annie currently has the same stand of TB that was present in Rebecca at necropsy. Rebecca and Sabu had tuberculosis, confirmed at necropsy. The report says that seven elephants were necropsied even though eight elephants have died. The list of dead elephants includes a mysterious “African Male”... Would Dr. Cork make the error of referring to Ruby as an African Male?

16 Page 8 One of the two elephants who had evidence of TB at necropsy was housed with the current female Asian elephants. The elephant AsFX1 (Rebecca) died in January 2011. Why was her necropsy performed in November 2011?

17 Page 9 Sabu was trunk wash negative in 2010 but reactive to the Stat-Pak and MAPIA tests in 2011. The NVSL report suggests that “further infection may have also occurred during contact at the facility”

18 Page 10 Positive blood test = presumptive positive TB case. The Toronto Zoo elephants are not reactive to either the Stat- Pak or the MAPIA.


20 Page 12

21 Table 2 – Page 12 How can this elephant be considered group 1?! She is housed with a TB-positive elephant....

22 Page 13 The attending vet at PAWS is present only two days a week. Elephants are brought into the barn during the evening and inclement weather. It is a myth that elephants at PAWS are in their pasture 24/7.

23 Page 13 Annie is “undergoing training to facilitate treatment” and “the best option WILL be selected by the PAWS veterinarian”. This implies that although Annie has been trunk-wash TB positive for approximately eight months, PAWS is not treating her.

24 Page 14 Although it is possible for TB to be spread by fomites such as food dishes and clothing, PAWS is not using designated coveralls for quarantine areas of the facility. WHY?

25 Page 15 The flooring in the Asian barns is difficult to disinfect.

26 Page 16 The hazard of tuberculosis is present in at least one of the quarantined group of female elephants and this could serve as a source of infection for OTHER ELEPHANTS, HUMANS AND THE ENVIRONMENT.

27 Page 16-17 Every effort should be made to mitigate any risks – such as NOT SENDING HEALTHY ELEPHANTS THERE There is potential for exposure of other elephants to the TB hazard

28 Page 17 Additional biosecurity measures are recommended by Cork and Abraham that are not currently used by PAWS If wildlife that dies on PAWS property is necropsied, why was is so “unreasonable” for the Toronto Zoo to request this information?

29 PAWS does necropsy reports on all animals that die on their property. Why does Councillor Berardinetti claim is it “something they ‘CAN’T’ do”? Sounds like something they ‘WON’T’ do. Article from Toronto Star by Linda Diebel (May 3, 2012)

30 Page 18 The risk of current and new elephants being exposed to tuberculosis is NOT NEGLIGIBLE. The residual risk remaining after mitigation measures have been put in place depends on what will happen in the future. Who can predict that? Why take the risk at all? The likelihood of exposure to TB is not negligible at PAWS and the consequences are hard to predict. This is the same conclusion made by the Toronto Zoo vet

31 Page 18 The last inspection of PAWS by the USDA was in April 2012. This implies that an inspection of the facility has not be completed since one of the elephants had a positive trunk-wash. Maybe another inspection is in order?

32 Appendix 2A Large areas of this table are “blacked out”. Where is this information? Why is the table cut off at the side? Information is missing. Why are some trunk- wash results from April 2012 still “pending”? Annie was trunk wash positive in APRIL 2012

33 Appendix 2A, 2B, 3A Large areas of this table are “blacked out”. Where is this information? Why is the table cut off at the side? Information is missing. Why were tests “not done” on Annie in May 2010? Gyspy was not reactive to the MAPIA test in May 2010 but was reactive in June 2011

34 Appendix 3B & 4 Both elephants who were reactive to the Stat-Pak and MAPIA were tuberculosis positive at necropsy Why is the table cut off at the side? Information is missing.

35 Please do your own research!! Link to Dr Cork Report and Info from Zoo CEO and zoo vet: m=2012.EX24.30 Link to Toronto Star article – May 27, 2012 california-elephant-sanctuary-official-nixes-second- planned-site-visit-by-toronto-zoo-officials Link to Toronto Star article – May 3, 2012 demand-to-sanctuary-could-be-an-elephant-sized-deal- breaker

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