The heat is on the power brokers of the world to step up and start taking some serious measures to bring an end to the horrific trade in wild animals and poaching. It's about time tough measures were put in place to protect the animals in Africa from the relentless exploitation threatening to send them to the brink of extinction. In the wake of the awful death of Cecil many new measures are being put in place to do more to save elephants, rhino and lions. Poaching wildlife is in my opinion one of the biggest issues facing humanity and must be brought under control before some of these threatened species numbers are so decimated the populations aren't viable. To consider that an elephant is poached for it's ivory every 15 minutes is a truly horrifying statistic and explains why their numbers have plummeted from hundreds of thousands to perhaps a mere 30,000 - 40,000 animals. It is criminal that this situation has been allowed to flourish for so long, that this trade in ivory funds terrorism which in turn affects all of us threatening our very survival. I don't believe that we can afford to look at it any other way.
Trophy hunters who defend the killing of any species as an aid to conservation, are simply using that as an excuse to continue what they have always enjoyed doing. They don't want to have to give up their pleasure at shooting animals they can mount on their walls, which is a display of appalling horror. It is an archaic past time for the rich and callous and it comes as no surprise that most of the trophy hunters are Americans. Wildlife in Africa will continue to draw thousands of tourists from all over the globe generating income that surely will go on indefinitely if animals are protected. What will tourists look at if all the animals are gone ? No one will be paying big dollars to look at the empty bush. The precious landscape of Africa teeming with wildlife is what we all imagine and want to see not a barren wasteland empty of life, a monument to greed avarice and disregard.
After the outrage about Cecil Jane Goodall expresses her views on what trophy hunting means to her. I don't think it matters at all whether it's a lion, a buffalo or a wart hog. All creatures have the right to be here and none deserve to be hunted down for pleasure. The days of the hunter should have been over decades ago. For them to still be out there paying huge money for the 'rights' to kill endangered animals, in fact any animal, is nothing short of archaic. There is no place in the world for this outrage on the natural world. It can not be overlooked that human population is exploding, creating relentless pressure on wildlife to survive, so to further compound that pressure with poaching and hunting is just plain callous in the extreme.
What is new in the fight to save lions ? It's truly gratifying that Cecil didn't die in vain, that his death has sparked such debate about what is being done to protect lions. Shining a much needed light on some of the awful practices concerning lions we now know their numbers have decreased to around 20,00 which is a frightening statistic. Huge efforts are underway after Cecil to boost lion numbers and protect them from the rampant money grabbing exploitation that has characterised their struggle. The news that Angola has been identified as a country with the largest lion population in Africa which also bans trophy hunting signifies a safe location to boost their numbers. At last a constructive step forward for the future of lions.
There are so many ways dogs work for us. Since 2008 dogs have been trained to sniff out poaching activity, becoming another weapon in the war on this hideous crime against animals. Never before has the illegal trade and exploitation of animals been greater so dogs with their intelligence and unique capacity to sniff out just about anything are making a difference. Let's hear it for dogs ! In a huge effort to curb the shocking trade in tiger parts authorities have trained up an army of sniffer dogs in India to help fight this horrible trade.
There can be no doubt about what trophy hunting is, a vile and bloodthirsty recreation for those rich enough to be able to do it and boast about it. It is without a doubt a crime against nature and allowing it to continue validates those callous individuals indulging their sadistic needs. Cecil and every animal killed in this horrible fashion can not be allowed to die in vain. It's not just lions that are targeted by trophy hunters it's leopards even elephants rhino and the list goes on and I'm only talking about Africa. The big horned sheep and goats of Nepal Afghanistan Pakistan and Mongolia are also popular animals to hunt down and kill for trophies. I wonder what is wrong with these people. Of course it can't be overlooked that these rich American trophy hunters bring desperately needed money into a country where local people are very poor and resources are few.
Mans best friend is proving yet again how invaluable he is in the war on poaching. In so many ways dogs make an incredible contribution to our lives and now he's training to sniff out and track down the worthless people who predate Africa's rhino and elephants. This dog is known as 'Killer' and helps his handlers track down armed and dangerous poachers in Kenya who wouldn't hesitate to kill anyone getting in their way. Let's hear it for these brave hard working dogs and their courageous handlers.
Nature takes my breath away and this beautiful film shows why it's so worth protecting.
Pictures speak a thousand words. These wonderful photos, a tribute to the lion from world renowned photographers speak volumes about the wild power of these iconic African big cats. There are so many reasons to protect and value them and not one reason to hunt them as trophies.
Sign this petition to stop the slaughter.
President Obama has put the might of America behind a commitment to phase out the trade of ivory in his country. America is the second largest market in the world behind China so this announcement is a significant move in the battle to end the relentless slaughter of elephants. China has also made important commitments to phase out the bloody trade in ivory which must happen or there will be no elephants left to save at the current rates of poaching estimated be 20,000 - 30,000 animals a year.