Posts Tagged With: zebra

Saving rhinos with Art

True colors by Angela Casey

Want to save rhinos?

When Rhinos Fly by Julie Keeney

Need a gift idea?

 

Majestic Ele by David Small

Or just want to treat yourself?

Affordable, unique artwork can be yours.

When: Aug 28 through Sept 4

Where: Online through Bidding Owl

How: Each piece will have a minimum start price, simply choose the piece that catches your eye, and place your bid. At the end of the final day (Sunday, Sept 4) the winning bids will be contacted. You will have 24 hrs to respond. If you do not, the second highest bid will be contacted.

*ALL proceeds will benefit our projects at Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya and Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center in South Africa.

 

 

 

Categories: Making a Difference, Poetry & Art, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Welcome to Kruger, home of the Rhinos

Kruger National Park is home to the majority of the Earth’s remaining rhino populations. So what else do we know about the rhinos’ home?

*Kruger National Park is the largest game reserve in Africa. It spans across 19,633 square kilometres, basically the same size of Israel or New Jersey.

crocodile bridge south entrance

*There are 9 gates accessing the park, adding to the difficulty to monitor and patrol human activity in the park.

*It is also home to 336 tree, 49 fish, 34 amphibian, 114 reptile, 507 bird and 147 mammal species.

*In 1869 (before the park was officially even founded), a gold rush exploded in the region, which resulted in the side effect of a significant decrease in game due to hunting and trading of animal horns and skins.

paul kruger and james stevenson hamilton

(L) Founder,Paul Kruger (R) James Stevenson Hamilton, the first game warden

*The park  itself didn’t come into existence until 1898, when it was founded  by Paul Kruger.

*The first game warden was appointed in 1902.

*The first motorist officially entered the park in 1927. Today Kruger has over a million visitors a year.

rhino crossing at kruger by marla sink druzgal

Rhino crossing at Kruger by Marla Sink Druzgal

*There are important archaeological ruins in Kruger, providing ample evidence that prehistoric man roamed the area between 500,000 and 100,000 years ago.

south african national defence force

The South African Defence Force has been added to enhance the anti-poaching strategies in Kruger.

Of course the biggest current threat to Kruger is poaching. The parks anti-poaching efforts consist of:

  • employing 650 rangers
  • receiving additional assistance from the police and National Defence Force
  • drones
  • a canine unit

Kruger holds a rich history, and it’s role to the future of the world’s rhinos, makes it a critical area of protection and preservation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Perspective

Mark middleton perspective

Mark Middleton’s “Perspective”

Perspective 1 artprize

Perspective 2 artprize

About the art: The rhino in the zebra’s eye demonstrates the beauty and need to preserve this highly threatened species due to poaching. The stripes of the zebra represent the black and white rhino species.  The rusted corrugated tin represents poverty in Africa, which drives the madness of poaching. My hope is that people observe the piece and are intrigued and feel compelled to explore the meaning behind “Perspective.”

This stunningly detailed work of art was created in acrylic by South African born Mark Middleton. It placed in the top 5 ArtPrize competition of 2014.

Categories: Poetry & Art | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Paving Paradise: the Road to Disaster

The Serengeti is a National Heritage Site, home to one of the most highly diverse groups of animals and habitats on the planet. The majestic serengeti mapecosystem stretches from Tanzania to Kenya, and 80% of it is currently protected by both governments.

The Serengeti is an infamous tourist destination, giving ample opportunities to view the Big Five, and of course the Great Migration. The Migration is an annual phenomenon, during which time hundreds of thousands of wildebeests, zebra and antelope move in herds from one grazing area to the next, spanning approximately 1800 miles.

Tourism is a significant part of Kenya’s economy, and it has emerged as the top foreign exchange earner in Tanzania last year as well.  According to Africa Travel and Tourism, basing on its great potential, the sector has much to be confident about in 2014.

Paving Paradise

construction in serengetiIn 2010, the Tanzania government announced a plan to construct a paved commercial highway across the Serengeti.  They believe this will more easily facilitate trade and travel, linking the country’s coast to Lake Victoria and countries to the west, including Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The group Serengeti Watch conducted a survey of over 300 scientists from varying countries who all concluded this would have adverse effects on the Migration. The annual routes of millions of animals would be disrupted, the area would become fragmented, and obviously the human-wildlife conflict would become an urgent concern. (Not to mention, making life “easier” for the poachers and game hunters.)

wildebeests migration

This photo taken during the Migration, in nearly the exact place where the proposed Serengeti highway would bisect this part of Serengeti and Loliondo. Not far from this spot there are survey ribbons hanging on trees.

Since then, there has been international public outcry, as obviously this disturbs one of the most precious ecosystems in the world. Serengeti Watch has brought attention to this devastating  proposal and last year a legal case was filed by Africa Network for Animal Welfare (ANAW). In addition, on Tanzania’s behalf, Serengeti Watch contacted dozens of organizations and more than three hundred experts in an attempt to find expert witnesses. Sadly, no one came forward, out of fear of serious repercussions in their ability to enter, work or remain in Tanzania in the future.

yes to the southern routeAlternative Plan: the Southern Route

In addition to the Serengeti Watch, the Frankfurt Zoological Society, African Wildlife Foundation and many other conservation groups and NGO’s are pushing for a route AROUND the Southern end of the park. This will accomplish the goal of connecting Arusha with the Lake Victoria region which is one of the “purposes” of the highway.

It would help five times as many people and would cost less. The Frankfurt Zoological Society estimates that it would only take 1 HOUR longer to drive!

Although this seems a feasible compromise, protecting both the wildlife and the opportunity for further development, it is still not decided.

The Way It Stands

Currently there will be paved roads on both sides of the Serengeti, connecting Arusha with the Lake Victoria region, things are in the final stages of planning. Contractors have been selected and the government of Tanzania has funds in its  2013-2014 Budget.

The roads will not be built within the Serengeti National Park itself, but they will border it and cross areas where large numbers of wildebeest and zebras migrate. Wildlife will be forced to cross tarmac roads with commercial traffic, including the Wildlife Management Area in Loliondo.

For updates,  join Serengeti Watch on facebook: STOP THE SERENGETI HIGHWAY

Please sign and share the petition to:  Protect Tanzania’s wildlife.

mandela save environment

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

America: Land of the Free, Home of the Arrogant

rhino with US flag

Saving the rhino in Africa, from China and Vietnam is a familiar scenario. But another disturbing piece of the equation lies within the US. American hunters have long been drawn to the thrill of “big game”, hunting down rhino, elephant and lion in Africa.

Recently the US Fish and Wildlife Services set a new precedent, giving permission to a hunter to bring back his rhino kill from Africa. This has not been allowed for 30 years. Opening the door to wealthy Americans to slaughter endangered species in the wild for trophies is a dangerous trend to start.

Of course it takes two to tango. Shame on the Namibian government for allowing the hunt, and shame on US Fish and Wildlife for encouraging  the hunter with incentive to keep the trophy.

According to Fish and Wildlife, “The Service cannot and will not allow the importation of sport-hunted trophies of species protected under the Endangered Species Act unless a comprehensive review determines that those trophies are taken as part of a well-managed conservation program that enhances the long-term survival of the species.”

What is well-managed? It seems if any of us had well-managed a species, they wouldn’t be endangered. And what  is the point of cartoon trophy huntrecognizing and labeling a species as threatened, vulnerable or endangered if we’re going to allow them to be hunted down? Is it because if they seem more rare, the price tag on their heads rises, and in the end both governments make more money?

Pro-hunting groups will have you believe by paying to hunt a species, the funds go toward saving them, therefore making conservation sense. However, in this particular case Namibia made $175,000 for their “conservation fund” which in reality is a general fund used for multiple purposes, including rural development; hardly a benefit to the rhino.

However to satiate American hunters’ needs to “bag the big one”, they can also kill endangered species closer to home.  In Texas alone, there are 500 ranches that in recent years have switched from raising cattle to the multi-million dollar industry of “exotic hunting”. There are species here thriving in Texas, that are almost extinct in Africa (i.e three species of endangered antelope and Grevy’s Zebra). Yet they survive only to be killed.

Not only is it illogical and seemingly unethical to breed endangered species simply to exterminate them, but the other part of the issue is the method of the hunt. Many of these hunts are canned hunts, which some within the hunting community even see as unethical.  (See previous post: Shooting Fish in a Barrel)

Endangered animals need protection. Not just from the country they’re in, not in a ‘save by killing’ method, there are no exceptions. They need to be encouraged to breed, given space to do it in, and given the every chance to survive.

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

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