I must begin this little piece of nonsense with an apology: to all who I have encountered in my role here at The Donkey Sanctuary Leeds; to all the lovely visitors; and to all who have endured me talking to them out in the community, extolling the virtues of our charity – to all of you, I am deeply sorry. But in my defence, and I can perhaps be easily forgiven because, even the Oxford English Dictionary has got it wrong on this occasion! But I digress, and perhaps I should begin at the beginning…
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With spring almost here, I thought you might like to know how Betty and her family (our resident colony of honey bees) have been doing since the autumn when they were fully stocked with around 40lb of honey stores. Most of this store was made up with thick sugar syrup made up with 2lb of white sugar to 1 pint water as the girls were a new colony and hadn’t grown in size to have a large enough workforce to gather as much as they needed for overwintering.
On the 30th anniversary of the story of a donkey who changed Fleet Street, we've been sent an eyewitness account of the day that the press went to war over who could claim the rescue of Blackie Star from a Spanish Festival.
Memories of a day when reporters and photographers mingled with heavy-duty bodyguards and the dockyard echoed to the tune of scuffles, broken ribs, cameras crashing onto the concrete and quite a bit of shouting!
This is a tribute to donkeys (of course!), Donkey Welfare Adviser, Mark Kerr, and a fabulous Donkey Guardian. I had the great pleasure of visiting a guardian home in Mark's area recently. Mandy gave a wonderful home to Eddie and Toffee who had been lovingly trained until they were ready to go out to a forever home by our grooms. And that could have been the end of the story.
It’s not been long since we published our report Under the Skin and the work to help donkeys and their communities has only just begun.
Alex Mayers, Programme Manager, visited Tanzania, where he and Dr Thomas Kahema, founder of The Tanzanian Animal Welfare Society (TAWESO), visited a donkey market believed to be serving the skin trade. During an emotional video, Alex described horrendous conditions for these donkeys as they waited to die.