So much can be learnt from wild animals and we learn about ourselves in the process. The story of Gertjie the baby rhino who at just under 3 months of age was found orphaned after his mother was killed by poachers is one of those amazing stories of survival against the odds. The Hoedrpruit Endangered Species Centre where Gertjie was taken and cared for are truly dedicated people who have ensured this baby rhino survived. It's a wonderful story of hope for a gravely endangered species and shines a light on what drives the insane beliefs that fuel the horror of poaching. That innocent animals are dying all the time for just no good reason other than profit or strange cultural beliefs.
Amur leopards on the rebound
From the wild inhospitable region of far east Russia comes the good news that the Amur leopard is making a comeback thanks to huge conservation efforts. My favourite big cat of all this magnificent animals has been persecuted and hunted until their number were as few as 30 to 40 in 2007. Now the population has doubled which proves that when real effort is made to save a species great things can happen. Who could gaze upon this amazing creature and not feel sorrow to see their kind disappear from the world forever.
Saving the mighty jaguar
The truly majestic power and strength of the mighty jaguar is one of the most awesome in the animal world. Yet even this magnificent animal is facing terrible pressure to survive. Already extinct in Uruguay and El Salvador efforts must be made to help preserve a healthy habitat for them to live and breed in. What a sad day it would be if we let this elusive animal disappear from the face of the earth.
It's spay neuter awareness month
Recently I found some really disturbing statistical info about the enormous numbers of feral cats predating the Australian environment. Estimated to be in excess of 23 million these feral cats have had a devastating impact on our native wildlife populations. So where did it start ? Ferals cats originated from pet cats dumped or abandoned which is bad enough but some of these cats were also capable of breeding because their owners didn't bother to desex them. The campaign to desex has only gathered steam in more recent years but 'the cat was already out of the bag' by then. There can be no good reason not to desex. Apart from the appalling numbers of cats and kittens euthanased so many are out on the streets starving and injured. It is every cat owners responsibility to desex their cat. Locally the Sunshine Coast Animal Refuge promotes the Desex in the City campaign.
Feral cats predating wildlife
Feral cats in Australia are considered one of the most serious threats to our native animals. When you consider that cat numbers could be around 23 million it's not hard to understand why so much of our vulnerable wildlife has disappeared or is seriously threatened. I love cats but know only too well what perfectly equipped predators they can be so mine live strictly indoors. Of course the whole reason cats are a problem is mostly down to people dumping cats or kittens in the bush, a totally irresponsible act that has lead to a major environmental problem that now seems almost impossible to contain. Has the cat has become top predator in Australia ? Sadly once the rabbits were all but exterminated from the continent cats then turned to the next best thing. Our native birds, small marsupials and lizards are all on the menu. While the feral population is exploding we as cat owners can at least act responsibly if we don't want our cat and hand it over to a refuge. Surely that can't be too hard to do.