Yet another blow for wildlife with the news of the death of Tam the last male Sumatran rhino in Malaysia. Is this be a species that can be saved ? It seems a remote possibility with only 30 - 100 of the animals left in the wild. Deforestation, poaching, habitat loss and encounters with humans have decimated once healthy populations that roamed through much of South East Asia but are now confined to a shrinking habitat of fragmented forests. It's a stark reminder of how important habitat diversity is to healthy reproduction leading to proper populations of animals. As always these ancient animals have been hunted and predated for their horn and so called medicinal benefit to the absolute brink of extinction.
Climate change must be one of the most controversial topics of our age showing us that unless we as individuals start to make changes in the way we live the consequences for our future will be very worrying. But what can we do ? Many of us think that it's all about big manufacturers and their activities that pump out undesirable gases into the environment, that as individuals we actually don't have to do anything or that our changes won't make a difference. Wrong, we can make changes to our daily lives that lessen demand for goods and foods that contribute to climate change. Our consumption of meat and dairy foods contribute to the gases in the environment from the animals that create the food for us. Trying to limit food wastage is an important aspect of contributing as an individual. With a global population of 7.7 billion people who all have to be fed and housed and powered the demand and pressure on our planet is enormous so lessening demand will make a difference.
What is biodiversity ? it's a word we hear a lot but what does it mean ? A balanced natural environment of plants, water, insects, birds and animals all interacting with one another to form a wonderful wild place where all of nature is thriving. Human activities are impacting on the natural biodiversity of the planet that we in fact need to survive which is a loss of biodiversity that sadly will impact on all of us. In a modern age of technology rapid human population growth and huge demand on natural resources this biodiversity is at risk of collapsing which would have catastrophic implications for humankind.
It's no surprise that on a global scale 1 million animal and plant species are facing extinction due to the activities of humans according to a UN report carried out over 3 years. Our oceans are decimated from over fishing our rain forests are being burned to make room for cash crops and food and wild animals are being harvested for food and profit at unprecedented levels. All of this is catastrophic for the very survival of humans themselves so what can be done ? It seems plenty if we are willing to make sacrifices and different choices that lead to better outcomes for nature. Our whole world is driven by the need for economic growth which is a key factor in the exploitation of the natural world so perhaps we as individuals need to reassess and value a different way to live and support the policy makers willing to support that idea.