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In the last five years, the vast majority of the estimated 1,375 endangered species permits granted by the Fish & Wildlife Service involved financial pledges to charity, according to agency documents reviewed by Reuters.For a $2,000 pledge, the Fish & Wildlife Service permitted two threatened leopard cubs to be sent from a roadside zoo to a small animal park. After a $5,000 pledge, the agency approved the transfer of 10 endangered South African penguins to a Florida theme park.The agency usually does not try to independently confirm that donations are actually made or that the charities, often located overseas, are worthy, an agency document says.Last year, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sued the Fish & Wildlife Service over a 2014 endangered species permit issued to Tarzan Zerbini Circus of Webb City, Missouri. Hoover, the agency official, said PETA and the animal exhibitors are wrong.The permit is still pending, but records show that Fish & Wildlife officials directed that Antle confirm a pledge of $10,000 to charity and a promise that the movie will have a conservation theme. He has agreed to do so, and said he thinks the agency's process is good because it helps endangered animals.
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