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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Thanks FedEx Express for Polar Bear Rescue Mission


August 12, 2003

Sally Davenport, FedEx, 901/434-7765 or 901/508-2075
Tom MacKenzie, FWS, 678/296-6400



Kevin Adams, Chief, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Law
Stephen Liberto, Vice-President of Global Trade Services, FedEx


Award Presentation for Polar Bear Rescue Mission

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will honor FedEx Express for its assistance last fall in transporting six seized polar bears from Puerto Rico to three mainland zoos. The Service's law enforcement chief will present awards to several of the FedEx Express team members for their significant and much-appreciated contributions to this complex animal rescue mission.


Wednesday, August 13, 2003, 1:30 P.M.


3650 Hacks Cross Rd.
Bldg E-3
Memphis, TN 38125


Media must notify FedEx contact in advance of their attendance and bring credentials and photo identification to the FedEx facility for security clearance.


On November 5, 2002, special agents of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seized six polar bears from the Hermanos Suarez Circus in Yabuccoa, Puerto Rico, in connection with alleged violations of federal wildlife laws and regulations. The animals, which were in poor health, were seized under a federal court order to ensure their safety and well being. On November 19, 2002, FedEx Express transported the bears at company expense from Puerto Rico to Memphis and then on to three facilities approved by the American Zoological Association, where they have received professional veterinary care and any necessary medical treatment. All but one of the bears survived the move. The animals have thrived at their new homes at the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro, North Carolina; the Detroit Zoo in Detroit, Michigan; and the Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma, Washington. About 40 people in Puerto Rico helped transport the bears -- averaging about 1,000 lbs each -- to their travel cages, after they had been tranquilized by veterinarians from several zoos and bear conservation organizations.

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