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Friday, November 19, 2010

45 Attend Waikoloa Community Donkey Forum

Forty-five residents and neighbors attended a lively Donkey Forum at the Waikoloa Community Church November 17. There was lots of progress reported on humane management of the herds, to relieve the stress on donkeys, residents, and drivers.

First: see this video by Big Island Video News to catch the excitement!

Waimea Veterinarian Dr. Brady Bergin arrived straight from a full day of donkey duties, in his scrubs, to describe the current efforts to capture, castrate, and re-home donkeys. About 100 have been adopted to date. Dr. Bergin is working with a rancher above Waikoloa right now. Plans are to expand efforts in and around Waikoloa Village. Dr. Bergin and his amazing team are in the process of approving adoption applications in preparation for re-homing donekys.

Inga Gibson of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) had good news, as well. HSUS is providing financial support and soliciting donations for donkey. A search is under way for a secure rancing corral in our area to be used as a temporary holding site for the trapped donkeys. This would allow the gathering of a large number of donkeys so the HSUS Veterinary Medical Association can fly in a team to help Dr. Bergin castrate a larger numbers of males more efficiently. If you know of such a site, please call Aina Hou Animal Hospital at 989-6149.
People can donate via a restricted and dedicated account specifically at www.humanesociety.org/hawaiidonkeys.  Donors may also drop off a check at any Hawaii Island Humane Society (HIHS) shelters. (Kona, Waimea and Keaau.) Make checks payable HIHS, with a note on the check, “Waikoloa Donkeys”.

Click to download a donkey adoption application. We need adopters pre-approved, after large castration clinics, the donkeys can be quickly re-homed.

See the new "How to Help" page on this blog for many other needs.

HPD Community Policing Officer Paul Bugado asked attendees not to water donkeys in their yards, because it draws ever more donkeys into Waikoloa Village. Dr. Bergin and Inga confirmed the donkeys do have water sources available.

Anika Glass thanked HPD for its commitment to put up occasional electronic signage on Waikoloa Road. Mahalo also to Hawaii County Public Works for testing “Strieter-lites” near the 7 Mile Marker of Waikoloa Road. “Strieter-lites” may help mitigate the appearance of donkeys on Waikoloa Road. (See http://www.strieter-lite.com/)

Real progress is being made on humanely managing our Waikoloa donkeys and preventing any donkey crisis that might be in our future. Thank you for your continued patience and support.