Friday, August 31, 2012


Akbar, white Bengal tiger, after his arrival at IEAS!
Supporters like you made his life here possible,
and you can continue to help animals just like him! 
If you receive our monthly newsletter, you may have already read about the Chase Community Program and the opportunity it has given to IEAS this month. If not, then you should know that through this program, the Sanctuary has a chance to win $250,000! This prize is unbelievable and we are so excited to be a part of it! $250,000 covers almost HALF of our annual expenses - how amazing would it be if we won!?

So, what do we want from you? A vote! That's right. Just a vote! You don't have to vote every day, you don't have spend any money... you just need to CLICK. It couldn't be any easier, and you'll be a part of doing something amazing for the animals that call IEAS home. Remember, every vote counts, so please don't overlook this opportunity to help!

Each of you has the potential to vote for IEAS 3 times. Here’s how:

Voting Method Chase customers can vote 2 times from here (for 2 different charities – one of them IEAS!)

Voting Method Go to the Chase Community Giving App to get 2 votes (for 2 different charities – one for IEAS!) Once you get to the page, click the "Chase Community Giving" box (with the hand logo) to go to the VOTING page! 

Bonus Votes: By voting on Facebook, you can get a BONUS vote for any charity (even one you’ve already voted for). You can get this bonus vote by allowing “access” and sharing any content from the Chase Community Giving App on your own Facebook page. You can also get a bonus vote if one of your friends links back to the Chase Community Giving App from your shared link!

Voting begins September 6 and ends September 19! We will send out reminders on our Facebook, but get ready to VOTE! Tell your family, tell your friends! One click can make a HUGE difference!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Internship Highlights!

The summer intern session is winding down. With about a week left, the summer interns are getting ready to head out and continue on their way to a career working with animals. Jessica, Cassie, Cassandra, Emily, Heidi, and Johnny will all be leaving IEAS at the end of the month, and we're sorry to see them go. Their internship has been packed with resume boosting skills and new experiences that will make them even better candidates for future positions.

One of the highlights of their internship was learning to work with mortar and cement to repair and remodel pools! They took part in the reconstruction of six different pools, giving them tons of experience working with the materials used in the projects. They've even been able to see the implementation of a pump system to create a running waterfall in the pools, and they have had the opportunity to learn how the pumps run and how to fix potential problems in them.

Another exciting portion of their internship was taking part in the three classes that IEAS has for them. These classes include Laws & Regulations, Grant & Proposal Writing, and Firearms Safety Training. In the Laws & Regulations class, the interns were able to learn and discuss the varying state and federal laws regarding the owning, housing, and caring for exotic animals. They researched their own home states to find out what the regulations are where they come from. It is a great start to their complete knowledge and understanding of the field.

The Grant & Proposal Writing class taught the interns about a big part of being a non-profit organization - asking for donations. They were able to take part in helping the Sanctuary obtain donated products from companies nationwide, and they were very successful! This particular group of interns helped IEAS get donations of fire ant killer, grinding wheels, bleach sprayers, insect spray, hot wire materials, gift cards, and a hose. This is a wonderful set of goods for the Sanctuary to receive and we are grateful for both the interns' hard work AND the companies who were generous enough to donate to the Sanctuary!

The Firearms Safety Training class was a lesson in the important of gun safety and knowledge when working with potentially deadly animals. After first learning the ins and outs of the gun, the necessary safety protocols, and the proper use of them, the interns were able to practice their shot. The knowledge and practical skills they picked up in this class are necessary additions to any facility where dangerous animals are present.

The interns were also able to take part in the Sanctuary's revolutionary Emotional Enrichment Program, instituted by Animal Behaviorist Louis Dorfman. In taking part in this program, the interns were able to contribute to the emotional well-being of the animals living at IEAS. This has proven to be one of the most rewarding facets of their time at the Sanctuary for both the interns and the animals. 

We were happy to have had these eight interns here at IEAS this session. They did a great job, and we can't wait to see where they end up! Alex and Jay will be staying on in the fall for another three month session, so soon enough, we will welcome six new face to IEAS!

Monday, August 20, 2012

After the Rain!

A few days full of rain means we've got things to do here at IEAS! We have quite a few hills on our 50+ acres and flowing rainwater means we've had some wash outs. For the next week or so, Richard and Roy will be using our tractors and equipment to fix the holes and valleys. This is a time consuming project that will use considerable amount of diesel to complete. Because of your support, we'll be able to get it done!

But we're not complaining about the rain! It was definitely much needed. It helped water the grounds, cooled us down, and, a particularly exciting result, it filled the bear ponds in Bear Orphanage! The black bears have been loving having these ponds full. They have become the "hang out" spot during the day, and we've found bears there sitting by the edge, splashing around, or sleeping in the brush nearby. Several of the tours this week have been lucky enough to see Scooter, Scamp, and Greta splashing around in the water, and it truly is a treat to see them so happy thanks to the rainy weather!

Can you spot all three bears?

Sunday, August 19, 2012

The "Stink" Face!

Have you ever seen one of the IEAS felines making this face...

or this one...

Well, as funny as this face is (we call it the "stink face"), it actually has a purpose!

This is called the Flehmen response. Felines (and some other animals including horses) do this to draw an intriguing scent to their vomeronasal organ, called the Jacobson's organ. While it looks like they are being silly, this pressing back of their lips is a way for the cats to increase the potency of a particular smell. Essentially, they are smelling it more strongly and getting a better idea of what it is, whether it is the scent of another feline, the scent of prey, or just an unfamiliar smell! 

But don't worry! Even though you now know how important this behavior is, it's still okay to laugh! It is, after all, a very funny face! 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Did it really rain?!

We couldn't believe it either, but it actually rained here last night! We had quite the storm, full of thunder and lightning, and our favorite part - precipitation! It wasn't a lot, but it was enough to wet the place and cool us down for a while.

Danvir and Sajani enjoying the cool weather after the rain. 
The animals here at the Sanctuary were LOVING it. Many of them were out in the rain cooling off, and those that weren't came out of their dry houses as soon as it slowed down to enjoy the drop in temperature. Danvir and Sajani were in the group that stayed outside through the storm. They lounged on their perch for part of the rainstorm, and even spent a few minutes in their pool! Saphy preferred to be inside her cave while it rained, but once it was over, she was particularly active and playful. She came over to the fence when we came by, so we sat down for a visit!

Sapphire coming to the fence for a visit with her keepers!

Friday, August 10, 2012

One Year Ago...

Almost exactly one year ago, we welcomed Danvir and Sajani to their new home at IEAS, and we truly can't believe how time as flown. These two lovable tigers won their way into our hearts in a matter of hours, and our love and care for them has only grown in the past year!

For those of you who don't know, Danvir and Sajani were rescued from the Wild Animal Orphanage in San Antonio with the help of the USDA, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, and the State Attorney General's office. Upon the termination of the Wild Animal Orphanage, the sanctuary housed almost 200 animals suddenly in need of a new home. At IEAS, we knew that we had to do our part and more than happily welcome two Bengal tigers to our family.

Danvir and Sajani instantly took to their new home, and fully embraced everything it has to offer. On their first day here, both of these two tigers spent tons of time in their pools, enjoying the cool place to splash around. Not much has changed since then. We still see both Danvir and Sajani lounging in their pools all day long. It is without a doubt their favorite place to hang out!

We know that many of you have come to love Danvir and Sajani as much as we do, and we hope that you know just how much your support makes their new life possible!

To continue to support Danvir and Sajani's new life, click here. It means the world to them.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Why YOU should tour IEAS!

From the road, it's difficult to imagine just how much lies behind the IEAS signs. The entrance gates of IEAS span a length of some 100 yards of highway. However, once you’ve parked and your tour begins, you step into more than 40 acres of amazing experiences. Even without the animals, the walk along the tour route would be serene and relaxing, surrounded by trees and nature. The addition of passing by such a large number of truly breathtaking exotic animals makes the trek almost surreal.

All it takes is a moment of locking eyes with Ron, a majestic male lion or a content and loving chuff from Simba III, a tiger, to make you realize how magnificent these animals are, and better yet, to show you how lucky you are to be sharing time and space with them. It is often surprising how quickly and easily you can make a connection with an animal resident. Walking through the Sanctuary and seeing these animals, all of whom were rescued by IEAS after being abused, abandoned, neglected, or confiscated from someone unwilling or unable to care for them, brings to light the realities of exotic animal ownership. The resident animals are incredible ambassadors for both their wild cousins and animals who are currently in situations that they once lived in.

The added satisfaction of knowing that your visit has helped to protect and care for the animals you see, ensuring their happiness and majesty, surely makes that decision to finally stop in and see what’s behind those gates worth it! For more information about tours, click here!

We hope to see you soon at IEAS!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

UPDATE: Sapphire!

Have you been wondering how the Sanctuary's newest resident, a cougar named Sapphire, is doing since her arrival at IEAS two months ago? Well, in short, she's doing wonderfully!  

After spending the majority of her life indoors, Saphy had some major adjusting to do when she moved into her new outdoor home. Complete with toys, perches, grass, trees, a cave, a hammock, a house, and more, the habitat is a natural, enriching space for her, but a big change nonetheless. She took less time to explore than many new arrivals. Within the first few days, we spotted her in her cave (her favorite spot, for sure), on her perches, and even rolling around in the grass in the evening time. She even has a favorite toy, her hanging buoy, which we have spotted her batting around as she lays on her back beneath it. Over the past few months, her curiosity has stayed strong. She loves to keep and eye on what's going on around her, particularly in the evenings. 

Some of the most incredible progress she has made since her arrival has been in the behavioral changes we've seen. Her wild instincts have been popping up here and there, and we couldn't be happier to see that a natural environment brings out the cougar in her! Her favorite day of the week is definitely Thursday, the IEAS Bone Day, where she receives a few turkey necks in lieu of her normal diet. When she sees the gator coming with her treats, instinctual mode kicks in and Saphy is ready to pounce on those turkey necks the second they are inside her habitat!  

Another "cougar" habit that Saphy has is burying her feces. This is a normal behavior for this species of cat, but Saphy has taken it to a whole new level recently. When we pick up her habitat, we are certain to find one big mountain of dirt and grass that she has built up since the last pick up day. We sift through and sanitize, but as soon as we are done, she is back out shuffling her pile back together! Such a funny girl!

So, all in all, Sapphire is doing great. She's got a good appetite, stays cool in her cave and under her misters, and even enjoys visits from her trusted human caregivers. We are so happy to have her as part of the IEAS family. 
To find out more about Sapphire, click here
To donate to support her new life at IEAS, click here

Thursday, August 2, 2012

New Ways to Tour IEAS!

With the school year on the horizon, it’s a great time to start thinking about field trips. The Sanctuary offers conservation education tours that allow students to become completely immersed in new information with the added excitement of seeing the subject material right in front of them! There are few better ways to learn about exotic animals and conservation than to be observing them first hand!

Is your school (or your child’s school) too far away to visit IEAS here in Boyd, TX? Are the students who want to come to IEAS too young to take a tour in person (less than seven years old)? Well, don’t you worry – IEAS has gone VIRTUAL! The Sanctuary now offers virtual tours for students via Skype! It’s a great way for students around the country to meet the Sanctuary animals and learn about their natural histories and conservation efforts. The classroom will follow its tour guide through the Sanctuary, meeting tigers, lions, jaguars, grizzly bears, black bears, coatis, and much more!

We are so happy to be taking advantage of the opportunities that technology is offering us. You should, too! Call 940-433-5091 or e-mail us at for more information!