Here we are again, another two months have flown by and we’re at the half-way mark of 2017. How has this year been treating you?
Just like March/April and January/February before that, here’s a rundown of some wildlife stories I’d like to share with you from the recent weeks.
France bans the breeding of dolphins and orcas in captivity and the keeping of all whales, dolphins and porpoises that aren’t already in captivity. Not only that, but the legislation also bans all physical contact with the animals and requires that pools be significantly increased in size.
Rhinos return to Rwanda after ten years. In early May, up to 20 eastern black rhinos were relocated from South Africa to Akagera National Park, 10 years after the last of the species was seen in the area. The relocation has been managed by African Parks, an organisation that manages protected areas in various countries around Africa.
The first US offshore wind farm shut down a diesel plant on a small island on the east coast. While it may be tiny in comparison to the rest of the country, the fact that 1 million gallons less of diesel are being consumed a year is worthy of note.
The UK Conservative government quietly removed their pledge to ban the ivory trade in Britain in their 2017 manifesto, with some claiming the Prime Minister Theresa May is bowing to pressure from the antiques industry.
The Doomsday Seed Vault, located in Svalbard in the far north of Norway, experienced some flooding due to melting permafrost. The vault is meant to be a last hope in the case of environmental disaster, but an abnormally warm Arctic summer shows that the region is experiencing climate change faster than the rest of the planet.
A Namibian game farm is apparently selling several baby elephants to a zoo in Dubai, even though such a sale would go against international law in the form of CITES., showing that the illegal wildlife trade is still alive and kicking.
Two lionesses were killed near in South Africa after they kill a cow, despite warnings to the farmer to keep his cattle in a protective boma at night and the presence of five community-based lion management groups, undermining conservation efforts in the area.
A rhino conservationist I had gotten to know during my time in Malawi last year was killed by a rhino in Rwanda during the very relocation I mentioned above. Kris took me out tracking one day and showed me my very first wild rhino – an experience I will never forget. He was a passionate, engaging man who loved wildlife and his family, and he will be sincerely missed by the conservation community.
Most tourists visiting the Cayman Turtle Centre in the Cayman Islands don’t realise that those turtles they are holding, swimming and taking selfies with are also being raised for the meat industry. The centre is also a turtle farm for the traditional food of the islands, and is often criticised for its treatment of the endangered sea turtles it has in captivity.
I'm a traveller and zoologist who is passionate about seeing the world and the incredible creatures who inhabit it. I love planning new adventures, working with wildlife around the world and promoting ethical animal encounters and volunteer opportunities.
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