Wildlife in Danger

Wildlife in Danger

When we talk about critical issues involving Mother Nature and environmental conservation, we only think of their effects on humans (especially climate change and global warming). However, we fail to include our non-human friends because as usual, we are too preoccupied with ourselves.

The wildlife is the first to suffer in the case of a natural/ man-made calamity or disaster. They are not as ingenious as us in getting ourselves out of trouble. So as the more superior species than that of our furry and flighty friends, it is but our responsibility to think of their welfare and well-being because obviously, they can’t think for themselves and these environmental issues are our fault in the first place.

Efforts to save some of England’s rarest species, including the shrill carder bee and the chequered skipper butterfly, from extinction are being backed by £4.6m in lottery funding.

Little-known and exotically named insects such as the bearded false darkling beetle and the royal splinter cranefly, as well as plants including the prostrate perennial knawel and interrupted brome are among the 20 endangered species being targeted for action.

A further 200 threatened species will also be helped by the funding from the National Lottery, including pine martens, large garden bumblebees, lesser butterfly orchids and hedgehogs.

The money will support the “Back from the Brink” initiative to bring together leading charities and conservation bodies in the first countrywide coordinated effort to safeguard species from extinction and deliver conservation measures across England.

The scheme aims to boost conservation efforts in 150 key habitats and landscapes, and recruit and teach more than 5,500 volunteers the skills they need to study, identify and look after threatened species.

(Via: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/mar/31/funding-boost-to-help-save-englands-rarest-species-from-extinction)

The threat of climate change hurts the wildlife more than it does to us. Droughts leave them thirsty and dying. Floods can kill them too. They have no urban jungle to shelter them from the elements or a supermarket to provide food when they are hungry. When the trees stop bearing fruits and the crops start growing, the animals will soon die too.

For long, Nigeria has rested on an erroneous notion that our wild animals were plentiful and not under any threat of extinction, however, following the recent publication of the IUCN red list of globally threatened species which revealed that 148 animal and 146 plant species found in Nigeria were threatened at various degrees including some species near extinction, we hope it is not too late to right the wrongs. Out of the very large landmass that Nigeria boasts of, we are not assured of the functionality of our seven National Parks, we are not sure they really are a refuge for what we have left of our wildlife population, we are yet to see wisdom in prioritising our wildlife heritage, we have chosen not to take a cue from smaller countries like Gabon with 13 well-managed national parks, Egypt with 25 national parks and Kenya with 23 national parks only aside game reserves, wildlife sanctuary and other forms of protected areas in countries like Botswana, South Africa, Tanzania and Madagascar are clear examples for Nigeria to follow.

“100 Cross River gorillas remain in Nigeria”, “There are approximately 450 savanna elephants in Nigeria”, “Fewer than 50 lion remain in Nigeria”,”Value of illegal wildlife trade is 50 – 150 billion USD per year”, “Over 56 billion farmed animals are killed by humans every year”, “Half of world’s wildlife was lost in last 40 years”, “100,000 African elephants were killed in last three years for their ivory”, “Less than 7,100 cheetahs remain in the wild”, “Population of birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish has declined by 52 per cent globally between 1970 – 2010” waking to read these and many more anti-wildlife true statistics tell that the time for urgent action is now.

(Via: http://allafrica.com/stories/201703300629.html)

It is high time we acknowledge the connection between environmental deterioration and wildlife extinction. Even though we may never see the extent of damage our abuse and neglect is causing to the wild, it does not mean that the problem is not real.

If we don’t act now, it may be too late for some of the endangered animals nearing extinction. We’ve seen it over the years. More and more animals disappear from the face of the planet forever. The most recent are the African Black Rhino. We somehow managed to wipe out every single one of them and it is a depressing thought as any. Let us get our act together and save the planet along with everyone else living in it.

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