GRAPHIC MEDIA: Auction of Black Rhino by Dallas Safari Club

Comments Off on GRAPHIC MEDIA: Auction of Black Rhino by Dallas Safari Club

By Omemee  |  Posted January 4, 2014  |  Omemee CNN PRODUCER NOTE     CNN is currently investigating this iReport. It has not been verified.  – Jareen, CNN iReport producer

The Dallas Safari Club has seen its organization in the cross-hairs of a worldwide debate since first announcing its plans for the execution of a highly endangered rhinoceros.

THIS IS NOT CONSERVATION IT IS JUST BLOODY MURDER

On January 11, 2014 at the Dallas Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, they will be auctioning the rights to kill an endangered Black Rhinoceros and are declaring this hunt a “heroic conservation” effort, the Dallas Safari Club and its supporters are attempting to deceive a gullible public into believing this hunt isn’t simply the slaughter of a rare species of rhino.

The club’s actions and rhetoric dares to make palatable what most would deem unjustifiable—killing an animal facing extinction. Some ‘lucky’ hunter-with a fist full of cash, gets to kill an endangered Black Rhino.

“Black rhinos tend to have a fairly high mortality rate,” Executive Director of DSC Ben Carter says. “Generally speaking, out of a population of 2,000, harvesting three rhinos over a couple or three years has no impact on the health of the rhino herd at all.”

“It’s going to generate a sum of money large enough to be enormously meaningful in Namibia’s fight to ensure the future of its Black Rhino populations,” Carter says.

ENDANGERED SPECIES

IMAGE FROM:-http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2477873/Texas-Save-rhino-fundraiser-auctions-chance-shoot-endangered-black-rhino-dead.html

The money, in reality, may go to an already corrupt government, one that is willing to turn a blind eye to the destruction of its own resources for money. At the time of this writing, there is no clear indication who will get the money and for what conservation purposes.  Government corruption In Southern Africa is a well-known issue and regularly documented by various media sources. 

 In a second interview Ben Carter states “Namibia has an annual quota to kill five black rhinos and has ‘selected’ the club to auction one of them.” He then continues, “That said, if someone wants to cough up almost seven figures and use the permit to go shoot the rhinos with a camera, they are more than welcome to do so.” These statements are a direct contradiction of what they are claiming as “advanced, state-of-the-art wildlife conservation and management techniques”

“Conservation,” is the organization’s only argument to garner support, even within its own community. This is simply a selfish attempt to ensure its members can continue hunting rhinoceros and other species years from now.

This auction to hunt a Black Rhino is NOT conservation of a species. There is nothing ethical or heroic about it. It is a deliberate attempt to mislead the general public and disguise the true motives of the Dallas Safari Club and its members.

Exposing a Rhino Hunt By HSUS

According to Louisiana conservation attorney John J. Jackson, who said he’s been working on the auction project with federal wildlife officials, the hunt will involve one of five black rhinos selected by a committee and approved by the Namibian government. The five are to be older males, incapable of reproducing and likely “troublemakers … bad guys that are killing other rhinos,” he said.

These animals are farm-raised around humans and cared for by humans only to be killed by rich hunters in what has been coined as “canned hunts.” This is simply a method that allows them to farm more for harvesting later.

This auction is nothing more than abuse of Africa’s natural resources to the highest bidder. No ethical or moral motive drives the hunt club’s actions. What DSC touts as conservation, we label destruction of a nation.

Rhino poaching: After the killing: Farmers Rhino poached (Viewer Discretion)

Published on 30 May 2013

Three rhinos were poached during our recent visit to a rhino farm. Is trading their horns the only way to save them? WARNING: contains graphic images.

The DSC lawyer’s statements are shockingly arrogant and factually incorrect. “This is advanced, state-of-the-art wildlife conservation and management techniques,” Jackson, a Metairie, La.-based international wildlife attorney, said Wednesday. “It’s not something the layman understands, but they should. This is the most sophisticated management strategy devised,” he said. “The conservation hunt is a hero in the hunting community.”

Yes he is correct–the hunt may be a hero in the hunting community. But it has no conservation value other than the additional killing of rhinoceros and other species by rich Americans. This guise of “conservation” is not new but seems to be the only justification the group has.

The individuals who participate in these hunts are rich Americans and Germans-typically millionaires who could very simply donate towards the care and keeping of endangered species rather than killing them. If this club wants to be seen as ‘heroes,’ and it has such a concern for conservation, it could easily petition its rich members to save these animals by donating money, to be used towards conserving the species.

So we continue to ask–how is handing over a sum of money for the rights to kill an animal that is nearly extinct the most sophisticated management strategy, when most South African countries are banning Trophy Hunting?

These countries have found that it just does not work. There is a comprehensive list of researched and confirmed reasons that clearly explain why trophy hunting is not a good conservation method, even if cash is generated in the process. And, in fact, the numbers of threatened species have rapidly declined since the Hunting Lobby groups won the fight to continue “their conservation efforts”.

The real motive for this auction and hunt is not for the survival of the rhino species, and protection of the species’ inherent majesty and ecological importance, but rather for the expensive blood-lust thrill of killing. This opportunity is available only to an elite group of power hungry wealthy people to “conserve” a commodity for the continued planned, organized, and highly profitable execution of wildlife for fun!

News Link:-http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1072625

This has been done before, Facebook page of Hunter:-https://www.facebook.com/JohanCalitzSafaris

Jose Belismelis and Louis Pansegrouw did it again. Jose bought an auction elephant in NG35 and took this beauty. Heaviest tusk measured 19.5″x48″ and weighed 84lbs. The smaller one measured 19.25″x46″ and weighed an equally impressive 80lbs — in Botswana. Image of hunted Elephant:

MURDERER

Just a few of many petitions against this auction:-

Earlier News Item:

The rhino hunt is reportedly going to take place at Mangetti National Park, which is located in northern Namibia.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) has granted Namibia an annual export quota of up to five hunter-taken black rhinos, South Africa Tourism Update reported. The Namibia government approved the permit in accordance with CITES provisions to generate funding for rhino conservation initiatives, including anti-poaching efforts.  BY NELSON ALCANTARA, ETN EDITOR-IN-CHIEF | NOV 02, 2013

Quotes from the above website!

“Jeff Flocken, North American director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare, believes that this auction sends the wrong message, implying that the black rhino is worth more dead than it’s worth alive. “Killing animals to save them is not only counterintuitive but ludicrous,” Flocken told National Geographic. “We’re talking a highly endangered species, and generating a furor to kill them in the name of conservation is not going to do anything to help them in the long run.”

“Every single rhino is under the threat of poaching at the moment,” said Director of the World Wildlife Fund’s Species Conservation Program, Barney Long, to Antara News. However, the WWF also sent a letter to the FWS in 2009, advocating for the removal of non-breeding males.

British conservation charity Save the Rhino has advocated for proactive hunting while still acknowledging the minor details in play. Save the Rhino has also argued positively for the auction being held in America rather than remaining within Namibian boundaries.

“Couldn’t they get $750,000 without having to suffer an animal being shot? Well, yes,” Save the Rhino said in a statement on the official website, savetherhino.org. “It would be nice if donors gave enough money to cover the spiralling costs of protecting rhinos from poachers. Or if enough photographic tourists visited parks and reserves to cover all the costs of community outreach and education programmes. But that just doesn’t happen.”

Quotes from above website

Facebook page:-https://www.facebook.com/pages/STOP-Trophy-Hunting-NOW/136918922995288

Save The Rhino:-http://www.savetherhino.org/latest_news/news/filter/trophy+hunting

WARNING VERY GRAPHIC – Rhino Wars- The Silent Slaughter

Published on 1 Nov 2012 – Gavrielle Kirk-Cohen

Rhino Wars- The Silent Slaughter is a short documentary about rhino poaching in South Africa, which has become a pandemic. If rhino poaching continues at its current rate, all rhinos will soon be extinct. It is imperative that more awareness needs to be created about rhino poaching, so that governments will act with greater resolve and political will to combat poaching. This documentary was filmed in South Africa in June 2012 in partial fulfilment of my Masters dissertation and is dedicated to Lawrence Anthony for his wonderful work in conservation and for doing everything in his power and beyond to save the rhinos.

Advertisements

Video: China Ivory Crackdown Welcomed

Comments Off on Video: China Ivory Crackdown Welcomed

CHINA has destroyed more than six tonnes of illegal ivory, in a move welcomed as an important signal the country backs action to stop elephant poaching.

China has destroyed six tonnes of illegal ivory in a move to stop elephant poaching. Source: AAP

The ivory, which is sought-after in China for making ornaments, was seized from the illegal trade and has been crushed into powder by the Chinese government.

Conservationists say China is the world’s largest consumer of trafficked ivory, most of which comes from elephants killed in Africa, and the move sends a signal of the government’s commitment to tackling the problem.

Destruction of the ivory, from more than 600 dead elephants, comes just weeks after eight Chinese citizens were convicted and sentenced to between three and 15 years imprisonment for smuggling some 3.2 tonnes of ivory.

“The destruction of seized ivory makes an important public statement that, in conjunction with other government-led efforts to reduce demand, has the potential to have a significant impact on the illegal market for ivory,” said Tom Milliken, from Wildlife trade monitoring network Traffic.

Image comment: China will destroy ivory stockpile on January 6, 2014 Image credits: The Telegraph

“China’s actions, more than those of any other country, have the potential to reverse the rising trends of elephant poaching and illegal ivory trafficking.”

China has a legal ivory market based on stocks that pre-date a global ban on ivory trade imposed in 1989, and on stocks which were part of a legal “one-off” sale from four African countries in 2008, but the seized ivory cannot be be used for commercial purposes under international rules.

Gabon, the Philippines and the United States have all recently destroyed stockpiles of ivory 

Video & News Link:-http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/world/china-ivory-crackdown-welcomed/story-fnjbnxol-1226796201437

Ivory Trade Video: Suspected Poachers in Kenya Kill Two Wildlife Rangers

Comments Off on Ivory Trade Video: Suspected Poachers in Kenya Kill Two Wildlife Rangers

July 19th –NAIROBI, KENYA — The Kenya Wildlife Service says two wildlife rangers were killed Thursday responding to dozens of suspected poachers in the Kipini Conservatory game reserve on Kenya’s coast. 

one-elephant-200x160

Officials say the suspected poachers were armed with AK-47 rifles and opened fire on several rangers who were responding to a poaching incident inside the reserve.

Kenyan Wildlife Service spokesman Paul Mbugua says the rangers were actually attacked twice and one of the two men killed was a commander. One poacher was also killed.

“Then after that particular incident the rangers made a tactical withdrawal and then later they moved in to collect the body of the fallen ranger, and as they moved in to collect the body, the poachers were lying in wait,” he said. “They actually set up an ambush, and the rangers together with the police they were fired at, and during that second incident, which occurred at five in the evening, one of our officers who was actually the officer commanding the team actually went down.”

Mbugua said poachers are getting bold and patient. He said that after the first shooting incident, poachers had to lie low for up to five hours, waiting for the rangers to come back, knowing eventually they will come to collect the body of their fallen ranger.

“They are extremely brave and this is what we have been communicating, and you can see they are very sophisticated. One particular poacher had 208 rounds on him, he had three magazines for his firearm and he had other rounds of ammunitions of course in his possession,” he said. “And that tells you that these guys are willing to go to any length to ensure that they get their way.”

According to a recent United Nations Environment Program study, the number of elephants illegally killed in Africa has doubled over the last decade, reaching 25,000 killed in 2012, while the ivory trade has tripled in size.

Experts say the poaching of African elephants is at an all-time high, raising the possibility that the species could become extinct this century.

Trade in ivory was made illegal in 1989. Demand for ivory remains high in Asia, however, where it is used for ornaments and traditional medicine.

News Link:http://www.voanews.com/content/suspected-poachers-in-kenya-kill-two-wildlife-rangers/1705521.html

Petitions to sign please, also in above menu:-

Petition to Save Africas Elephants Ban Thai Ivory Trade

Published on 13 Jan 2013

Every day in the savannas and forests of Africa, elephants are being gunned down for their ivory tusks. Across the continent, tens of thousands of these majestic animals are being slaughtered each year. In many places the species has already been poached to extinction. If we don’t act now there may be no wild elephants left.
Elephant poaching is being driven by demand for ivory carvings and trinkets in Asia where many consumers think “elephant teeth” simply fall out and re-grow without hurting the animal. The truth is that ivory comes from dead elephants.
In Thailand, elephants are revered as sacred. There is a saying that there would be no Thailand without the elephant. But Thailand is also the biggest unregulated market for ivory in the world. Although it is against the law to sell ivory from African elephants in Thailand, ivory from domestic Thai elephants can be sold legally. As a result, massive quantities of illegal African ivory are being laundered through Thai shops. 
To save Africa’s elephants it is essential that Thailand closes this legal loophole.

Join us in asking Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to ban all ivory trade in Thailand.
Representatives from 176 governments will be meeting in Bangkok March 3-14 to discuss global wildlife trade issues, including the elephant poaching crisis. While the eyes of the world are turned to Thailand, we want to present 1 million signatures to Mrs Sinawatra.

Sign the petition and tell the Thai Prime Minister to ban ivory trade and save Africa’s elephants!

“Dear Prime Minister Sinawatra, we are greatly concerned about the record levels of elephant poaching in Africa. Demand for illegal ivory products could drive the species to extinction in Africa, and Thailand’s elephants could be next. You can save them. We urge you to ban all ivory trade in Thailand to give elephants their best chance of survival.”
For more information:
http://www.wwf.or.th/killthetrade
http://www.panda.org/ban

Score One For Pachyderms: Elephant Tramples Poacher To Death

Comments Off on Score One For Pachyderms: Elephant Tramples Poacher To Death

According to a report by Zimbabwe’s Sunday Mail, a poacher was trampled to death by the very elephant he was attempting to kill.“Now that’s what you call Karma; shame it doesn’t happen more often!”

The report said Magunje police found the remains of Solomon Manjoro fourteen days ago in Charara National Park, Gatshe-Gatshe, Kariba after a friend of his was arrested on allegations of possessing firearms illegally.

Manjoro was reportedly trampled by an elephant after he failed to shoot it during a hunting expedition. He, along with his 29-year-old friend Noluck Tafuruka, allegedly visited Charara National Park for the sole purpose of poaching between April 19 and 29.

Poachers kill elephants to collect ivory, which is sold on the black market and often smuggled into Asian countries to be used in ornaments and jewellery. Ivory sales were banned back in 1989 when poaching for the valuable substance halved the remaining number of African elephants in the 1980s.

Just recently, 26 elephants were massacred in the Dzanga Bai World Heritage Site in the Central African Republic. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) said 17 individuals armed with Kalashnikov rifles entered an area locally known as the “village of elephants” with the intention to kill the large animals. This area reportedly hosts between 50 and 200 elephants each day. The WWF said that since the poachers arrived, no elephants have been seen in the area.

“The brutal violence we are witnessing in Dzanga Bai threatens to destroy one of the world´s great natural treasures, and to jeopardize the future of the people who live there,” said Jim Leape, WWF International Director General. “The Central African Republic must act immediately to secure this unique World Heritage site.”

He said the international community needs to step up to help assist the Central African Republic to restore peace in the area and safeguard the elephant population.

“WWF also asks Cameroon and the Republic of Congo to assist the Central African Republic in preserving this World Heritage Site, which not only encompasses the Bai, but also includes large neighbouring areas of these two countries,” Leape said. “The events in Dzanga Bai are a vivid reminder of the existential threat faced by forest elephants in Central Africa. Populations of this species have plummeted 62 per cent over the past ten years.”

report by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) found that the elephant population in DRC has dropped by 37 percent in the last five years due to ivory poaching. The survey found that 75 percent of the reserve’s elephant population has been killed in the last 15 years.

News Link:http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1112844919/elephant-tramples-poacher-to-death-zimbabwe-051313/

CITES Partner Spotlight: INTERPOL’s Project WEB combats online wildlife crime

Comments Off on CITES Partner Spotlight: INTERPOL’s Project WEB combats online wildlife crime

“As the CITIES conference comes to the end of its first week, I thought I would just add the video in along with this post. Born Free’s CEO Will Travis, talks about some of the issues raised. Although I can’t believe the bid to halt the polar bear trade, was just swept under the table…WTF… Russia, Canada & the US…really have left the polar bears out in the cold…literally! I’m disgusted with their decision; same goes for the poor manatee!! I can’t wait to see what rubbish they come up with next week, for protecting species round the world; who are just about hanging on with their teeth!! Do the delegates from their respective country, actually know the danger some species are in?? I have my doubts given the first weeks bungles, honestly some of them are about as much use as a chocolate fire guard. Take about 30 of us animal advocates from face book, stick us round a table; & I’m sure we could come up with plans to help those in need!!”

Today saw the launch of the first ever internationally coordinated enforcement investigation into the online ivory trade.

Following the International Fund for Animal Welfare’s (IFAW’s) recommendation and with our support INTERPOL undertook Project WEB, an investigation into the online ivory trade within the EU.

Summing up week one at the CITES meeting in Bangkok

Published on 8 Mar 2013

Will Travers, CEO of Born Free, sums up week one at CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) meeting, covering secret ballots, elephants, rhino, polar bears, manatees and turtles.

The report revealed that there were hundreds of ivory items conservatively valued at approximately EUR 1,450,000 for sale during a two-week period on Internet auction sites in nine European countries.

During this survey of sites by enforcers, more than 660 advertisements for ivory on 61 different auction sites were analysed and as a result of the surveillance, six national and three international investigations were launched in cases where ivory was described as new or where ivory was being traded from abroad.

Project WEB by the numbers:

Estimated €1.45 million worth of ivory

Found in 9 Countries

Across 61 auction websites

In 660 online advertisements

Containing 100s of items made from ivory

Over a 2 week period

Leading to 6 national investigations

And 3 international investigations

This week sees the 16th meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)

The 177 countries that are Party to CITES have already agreed, thanks in part to IFAW’s lobbying efforts, to investigate and prosecute wildlife criminals trading online as well as evaluate or develop their domestic measures to ensure they are sufficient to fight online wildlife crime.

While at least one country has strengthened their legislation to specifically target online wildlife crime and a small number of countries have started to develop strategies for tackling illegal wildlife sales on the internet, many more countries need to deliver on their promise and stamp out online wildlife crime.

Since 2004 IFAW has been highlighting the growing global threat posed by online wildlife crime to endangered wildlife.  A series of IFAW investigations have repeatedly shown that there are thousands of wild animals and wildlife ‘products’, such as ivory, available for sale on the internet all over the world.

Stop The Ivory trade

IFAW has found live primates, big cats, birds and reptiles advertised online while animal parts from rhino’s, elephants, sharks, Tibetan antelopes and sturgeon have also been available to purchase on the internet.

In January 2012, IFAW’s online monitoring found 17,847 ivory products listed on 13 Chinese websites, even though none of these products had the necessary Government approval.

Meanwhile, a four-week investigation in the United Arab Emirates and some neighbouring Arab countries in the same year found 796 adverts featuring live wildlife over 11 websites. None of the adverts had any documentary proof to demonstrate that the sales complied with the law.

In Europe an IFAW investigation in 2011 found a thriving trade in ivory items. The investigation tracked 43 sites in the UK, France, Portugal, Spain and Germany for a two-week period and found 669 advertisements for ivory.

The statistics are disturbing but can be hard to comprehend so let me give you one example that shows the horrors of this illegal trade.

In 2010 a British couple admitted 12 counts of illegally exporting, three of illegally importing, seven of illegally selling and two of illegally possessing specimens under the Customs and Excise Management Act.

The couple in question had been selling animal body parts from owls, a baboon, macaque monkeys, a python, an African penguin, an African lion cub and a Malaysian flying fox.

These items were kept in a store room full of skulls and other animal body parts which, when I saw the pictures, made me think it as a room of death for wildlife.

Highlighting the problem of this trade is an important first step but IFAW has been going one stage further and engaging website companies, law enforcers and Governments in our campaign to stamp out online wildlife crime.

After our 2008 Killing with Keystrokes investigation, where we found ivory was the number one wildlife product being traded online, we encouraged eBay to ban the sale of ivory on their websites and IFAW was very pleased to see them announce this ban in January 2009.

Meanwhile other websites have since followed suit including Alibaba (www.taobao.com) in China, the world’s largest business-to-business and outsource portal site for traders.

However, while banning the sale of wildlife products on websites does restrict unscrupulous traders’ ability to easily profit from these products, there is clearly a need for enforcers to ramp up their efforts.

We have seen traders time and again attempting to disguise their wildlife products to avoid detection by police, customs or website companies such as eBay.

In addition to working with INTERPOL IFAW is working with enforcement agencies across the world to catch online wildlife criminals by sharing the findings of our online investigations, facilitating international enforcement operations and by bringing together website companies and enforcement agencies in order that they can work in partnership in their fight against illegal wildlife sales on the internet.

–TM

Please sign petition:- Take action to help end the trafficking of wildlife online now, click here. 

News Link:-http://www.ifaw.org/united-kingdom/news/cites-partner-spotlight-interpol%E2%80%99s-project-web-combats-online-wildlife-crime

Inc.Very Graphic Picture: The Illegal Commercial Bushmeat Trade Inc. Videos

Comments Off on Inc.Very Graphic Picture: The Illegal Commercial Bushmeat Trade Inc. Videos

“I started off with the intentions of just posting the news below…but as always, I get side tracked. (please remember, anything I have to say in a post is in this blue writing) I’ve heard about this gorilla but not seen much, until I saw this. It’s most remarkable, a great ape, capable of killing a human, in an instant; but instead, Koko the Gorilla & Robin Williams preferred to have a chit-chat, through sign language, then a tickling session  I’m more than aware that humans share between 80% to 98.5% (The reason for the big gap in % is because not all agree) of DNA with chimps, gorillas & orangutans. This really does show the fact that humans & apes are so very much alike, when it comes to feelings & behaviour etc. So we can’t let these magnificent species be taken to the edge of extinction; due to the bushmeat trade!!.”

Koko the Gorilla with Robin Williams

“After watching the above , now, try to comprehend my other video & the article below; posted for & on behalf of Tony Zadel. This shouldn’t be happening, yet it continues & is a thriving business!” 

Bushmeat, popular in many parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America, is the meat of hunted wild animals; including shark fin. reptile & whale meat, birds & turtles eggs! So whilst on your travels please don’t ever buy; ANY TRINKETS MADE FROM ANIMALS, or EAT EXOTIC CUISINE…YOU MAY NOT BE AWARE IT IS FROM AN ENDANGERED SPECIES OR THAT EXTREME SUFFERING WAS INVOLVED IN ACQUIRING IT. The trade in bushmeat has become highly commercialized in recent years and is the most significant immediate threat to the great apes in Africa today.

“Don’t think for one minute, if a female chimpanzee is caught, her babies will be left alone…no way! There is just as much demand for babies as there is for the meat, perhaps more! Any nursing monkeys or apes could be targeted by the poachers, who without empathy, drag the babies from their mothers, still warm but breathless bodies! As if that wasn’t cruel enough, the callous barbarians, set about hacking the mothers into pieces; all, whilst in full view of the babies! I can’t begin to imagine how those poor babies must feel, or how long the nightmares will last.

 While most CITIES countries dilly dally, about this & that…you can be helping end the bushmeat trade by simply signing a petition or sending a pre-written letter by email; small things that will soon add up. We need to make it our goal, to educate & raise public awareness of this diabolical trade; that could eventually see some species become extinct! One voice can say a lot but may not be heard, but a chorus of voices, can demand attention! So if you want your grandchildren, to still be able to see these exotic species, please, just spend a couple of minutes signing petitions etc! I want my great-grandchildren to be able to see the fascinating creatures of the rain forests, roaming wild;where they belong!” 

Illegal Commercial Bushmeat Trade

Uploaded on 24 Jun 2009

At the heart of the declining chimpanzee population is the illegal poaching of chimps and other great apes for bushmeat. The Jane Goodall Institute is working with governments and local communities to end this horrible practice.

“Posted below, as is, for & on behalf of Tony Zadel – Please sign the petitions & take note of the links, inc. video, providing more information. Thank you!”

The Bushmeat Trade – Threat of Primate & Wildlife Extinction !!! 

The unsustainable commercial and illegal bush meat trade is threatening extinction of apes, chimpanzees, gorillas, and other primates and wildlife. Not only are the primates killed for food and body parts, orphaned primates are being sold on the exotic pet market, and they are also losing their habitat through logging and commercial development.

In Africa, forest is often referred to as ‘the bush’, thus wildlife and the meat derived from it is referred to as ‘bushmeat’ (in French – viande de brousse). This term applies to all wildlife species, including threatened and endangered, used for meat including: elephant; gorilla; chimpanzee and other primates; forest antelope (duikers); crocodile; porcupine; bush pig; cane rat; pangolin; monitor lizard; guinea fowl; etc.

Though habitat loss is often cited as the primary threat to wildlife, commercial hunting for the meat of wild animals has become the most significant immediate threat to the future of wildlife in Africa and around the world; it has already resulted in widespread local extinctions in Asia and West Africa. This threat to wildlife is a crisis because it is rapidly expanding to countries and species which were previously not at risk, largely due to an increase in commercial logging, with an infrastructure of roads and trucks that links forests and hunters to cities and consumers

The bushmeat crisis is a human tragedy as well: the loss of wildlife threatens the livelihoods and food security of indigenous and rural populations most depend on wildlife as a staple or supplement to their diet, and bushmeat consumption is increasingly linked to deadly diseases like HIV/AIDS, Ebola, and Foot and Mouth disease. You can also help with organization like the BCTF, CWAF, and much more..

Please take a moment to view my friend link about the Bushmeat Trade http://www.occupyforanimals.org/bushmeat.html

Illegal Bushmeat

The picture link i have posted above is from Central Africa Traffic of animals body parts, Gorillas,Primates, Crocodiles and many more..

READ MORE ONhttp://www.save-the-primates.org.au/facts-bushmeat-trade.htm

READ DETAILS ON BUSHMEAT & WILDLIFE TRADEhttp://www.bushmeat.org/bushmeat_and_wildlife_trade/regions_affected/central_africa?page=2

Read alsohttp://www.buzzle.com/articles/endangered-gorillas.html
PLEASE WATCH THIS VIDEO (NOT GRAPHIC) http://vimeo.com/4984959#at=0

Above posted for & on behalf of Tony Zadel; https://www.facebook.com/tony.zadel

Elephants really do grieve like us: They shed tears and even try to ‘bury’ their dead – a leading wildlife film-maker reveals how the animals are like us

Comments Off on Elephants really do grieve like us: They shed tears and even try to ‘bury’ their dead – a leading wildlife film-maker reveals how the animals are like us

The pictures of a baby elephant in Borneo, nudging and nuzzling the body of its dead mother in obvious distress and bewilderment, cannot fail to move us.

Allegations that up to ten pygmy elephants were poisoned, perhaps by local farmers, are upsetting — perhaps because elephant emotions seem so like our own, so heartbreakingly close to human sorrow and grief.

Any scientist knows how dangerous it is to project human feelings on to an animal, to force them into human moulds or ‘anthropomorphise’ them, but it’s equally dangerous to ignore a wealth of scientific data based on decades of observation in the wild.

Heart-rendering: An African elephant mother mourns her calf, a victim of the three consecutive years of drought in East Africa

We may never know exactly what goes on inside the mind of an elephant, but it would be arrogant of us to assume we are the only species capable of feeling loss and grief.

I have been filming animals in the wild for more than 20 years, and that has often meant being around elephants: they live across a huge range of habitats. But mass poaching has put them into terrible declinearound 40,000 elephants a year are killed by poachers and, according to some estimates, since the Sixties the population has been culled from 3.5 million to just 250,000.

I am certain that the behaviour I have witnessed so often stems from real emotion. Understanding it is the biggest challenge for a wildlife cameraman. We have to get inside the heads of the animals, see how they are reacting and predict what they will do next, or we won’t get the shots we need.

Perhaps the most dramatic and emotional sequence happened in our current BBC1 series, Africa, narrated by David Attenborough. We filmed an elephant mother’s desperate attempts to keep her calf alive during the worst drought in 50 years in Kenya.

These animals were not dying of thirst: they were starving. Some volcanic springs were still flowing, so the animals could get water; what they couldn’t get were nutrients.

By that time, the drought was well into its second year and mother and baby were trying to survive on dry twigs. There was no hay in Kenya, there was a sense of utter helplessness, and we felt the most important thing was to document what was happening.

Cameraman Mark Deeble had been following the family for days. He saw that the mother stayed with her baby and felt she was distressed, trying to lift up the dead body and move it with her feet, before standing over the prone calf for about an hour, seeming to come to terms with the situation.

Whether you were actually there or watching events unfold on the screen, it was impossible to keep your emotions separate from what you were seeing. The mother’s bereavement transmitted itself so strongly.

In a more benign environment, an elephant might mourn for longer. I have heard of animals staying beside the bodies of dead friends for three days and nights, refusing to move.

This mother didn’t do that, possibly because she had been exposed to a lot of death around her. Fifteen thousand head of game died in that reserve during the drought. More than 400 elephants perished, including 60 per cent of all the matriarchs — a herd’s female leader. It was a terrible time for that population, and I think death had become familiar to them. You could draw a parallel with humans in wartime. The mother had to move on for her own survival.

We couldn’t save her baby, but we felt it was essential to put its death in context: Africa is infamous for its droughts and famines, and yet we very rarely see how seriously that affects its wildlife.

Scientists have observed extraordinary displays of emotion from elephants. When one tame animal called Abu died at a safari outfit in Botswana, his keepers brought the other elephants to say ‘goodbye’. One female, Cathy, was seen crying from both eyes, tears streaming down her face.

That doesn’t mean elephants know what death is. They can’t anticipate death in the way we can or imagine it as an abstract concept. Their grief is different: it’s simply about loss.

Dr Kate Evans, of the Elephants For Africa research foundation, has told me that on several occasions she has watched grieving elephants exhibit almost a sense of puzzlement.

They pick up, hold and examine bones, balancing a jawbone on their tusks or putting it in their mouths, as if they are saying to their dead friend: ‘Is that you?’ Perhaps the discredited myth of the elephant’s graveyard, a secret place where the animals supposedly went to die, had its origins in the fact that elephants interact with their dead.

Dr Evans has observed mourning among wild elephants that she knew well. On one occasion, a young bull came across three skulls. He ignored the first two, but paid particular attention to the third skull, from an elephant he had been friendly with. In Kate’s words, he seemed to know who the skull belonged to

Another time, a matriarch collapsed and died in the bush. Over the next three weeks, several lone males visited her body and spent time by her side.

Back in the Forties, George Adamson (the naturalist who, with his wife Joy, was the inspiration for the film Born Free) recalled how he once had to shoot a bull elephant from a herd that kept breaking into the government gardens of northern Kenya.

Adamson gave the elephant’s meat to the local Turkana tribesmen and then dragged the rest of the carcass half a mile away. That night, other elephants found the body, took the shoulderblade and leg bone, and returned the bones to the exact spot where the elephant was killed.

According to Charlie Mayhew, of the Tusk Trust, elephants will ‘bury’ their dead, covering carcasses with branches and even taking the tusks to be placed at a different spot. We cannot guess the precise meaning of that, but it’s clear that elephants are large-brained and social animals that live in complex groups. They recognise each other and, of course, they have marvellous memories.

When one animal dies, they will each need to assess how their social group has changed and how to re-evaluate themselves within this new hierarchy. The whole dynamic changes, and they need to know where they fit in within the crowd.

Those are not the only emotions they display. If you look at an elephant calf, chasing cattle egrets through the long grass, it is playing — it exhibits joy. In another episode of the Africa series, we showed a young bull elephant in ‘must’ or on heat — he was throwing his weight around, clearly in a heightened emotional state. We called it a ‘sexual fury’.

Elephants in zoos have reportedly shown symptoms of depression. The first African elephant to be taken to London Zoo, in the 1860s, was called Jumbo, and he posed problems for his keepers, who tried to keep him happy and amused.

For humans, the most complex and important emotion is love, and we describe it in a multitude of ways. The powerful bond between a mother elephant and her calf is an easy one for us to understand. But unlike humans, elephants don’t seem to have any notion of romantic love. You don’t get courting elephants — when they mate, it can be a pretty brief encounter.

Their society is a very female-based hierarchy, and the loyalty that a herd shows to a matriarch is intensely strong. They will follow her wherever she goes: perhaps that is a manifestation of love of a different sort.

Emotion requires communication, and the vocalisations of elephants are incredibly sophisticated.

They operate on some sound frequencies we can hear — trumpeting and grumbling — and others that we can’t. Much of their long-distance communication occurs through vibrations that are inaudible to us.

Low-frequency (or infrasonic) sounds are transmitted constantly, a deep rumble somewhere between  15-30 Hertz. The normal human range of hearing is between 20Hz and 20,000Hz.

These low frequencies can be sensed through the elephants’ trunks and even their feet, like vibrations on the skin of a drum.

They can talk to other elephants 50 miles away through the ground, communicating in ways that we are only just beginning to understand. It is possible that each elephant can recognise up to 100 other individuals by their infrasonic ‘voice’.

When we’re working with elephants, we can never let down our guard. I have been with populations that were utterly relaxed around humans; they just looked at us as being another kind of primate. Once, in the Okavango Delta in Botswana, on foot, I was part of a three-man camera team when we were surrounded by a herd of elephants.

That felt pretty scary — we were miles from our camp and could do nothing but crouch low beside a termite mound and keep murmuring, making small movements to show the animals that we were still alive. These were elephants very much in their natural state; they had never been hunted, and they were simply curious. In turn, three mothers brought their babies to show us to them. It appeared to be for their education — as if the mums were saying: ‘Come here, kids, and look at this!’

The babies approached us to within about five or six metres, wiggling their trunks and looking in all directions, and then they would suddenly lock on to us. We could hear these rumblings between mother and calf, as if they were discussing us. This happened three times within about ten minutes, before the matriarch led the herd away. That really was a magical experience.

When we’re on foot, especially in the forests of western Africa, we often have to use their trails. The only pathways are those made by elephants, so there is always a chance of an encounter. If one is coming head on, our only option is to get off the path: we have to rely on our guides because they know much more about the habits of those particular elephants than we do. And they will probably hear them coming a lot sooner.

You might imagine you could see an elephant coming a mile off, but it’s amazing how easy it is for an elephant to disappear. Give them a few small bushes and they can vanish completely. They are incredibly stealthy for their size.

Sadly, the impact of poaching is changing their behaviour. Some populations are becoming more aggressive because of it. Though I can’t prove it, I would readily accept that the elephant who wanted to shake our cameraman out of a tree was an animal who might have been hunted. All the others in the herd seemed relaxed, but this one was grumpy.

Why was that? Who can say how an individual elephant will respond to the loss of a close family member to poachers? All this feels particularly poignant as we examine in the next and last episode of Africa the future of the continent’s wildlife, and ask what the next few years hold for elephants.

Apart from the poaching crisis, elephants are coming into increasing conflict with farmers and expanding human populations. The incident in Borneo highlights that it’s not just an African problem.  One thing is certain: there will be many more dead elephants to mourn in the coming months.

News Linkhttp://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2270977/Elephants-really-grieve-like-They-shed-tears-try-bury-dead–leading-wildlife-film-maker-reveals-animals-like-us.html#ixzz2JzKmOKP8
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: