While we all drift in the streams of this beautiful world, there is an uneasy magic as we paddle against these turbulent realms of the unknown. Because I am passionate about elephants, and want nothing more than everyone else to feel the same way, I realise that I am and always have been a ‘dreamer’. However these attacks on our elephants, rhinos, lions and all other endangered species does concern all of us: it is our children’s childrens heritage at stake.
“Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed; if we permit the last virgin forests to be turned into comic books and plastic cigarette cases; if we drive the few remaining members of the wild species into zoos or to extinction; if we pollute the last clear air and dirty the last clean streams and push our paved roads through the last of the silence. .”
Wallace Stegner, The Sound of Mountain Water
Last week I wrote about our Presidential Herd of Zimbabwe and the fact that Sharon Pincott had been stunk out. The above link is an update from five days ago. There has been a frenzied focus on the current poaching trends sweeping the southern African countries, and sadly these trends appear to be obscured in political murk.
However, the good thing is that images or video clips are taken, posted and set free in this wonderful world of ‘cyber space’, taking only minutes to circumnavigate the world. There is nothing more distressing than watching a rhino whose horn has been ripped from it’s face staggering aimlessly around the game reserve. This clip reached millions of people in all corners of the world before the rangers had even had a chance to find the animal and put it out of it’s misery. This clip made for stressful viewing and I know I felt a deep gut wrenching sadness at man’s cruelty. Once the photo or clip is posted, it is out there: an ugly reality of what our wildlife is suffering because of man’s unquenchable greed. Sadly, harmony in the bush appears to be lost in the storms of political currents.
While I write up my blog, which sometimes feels like crumbling pages of inadequate words, there are many brave people on the ground. So let us celebrate the human spirit by helping these wonderful men and woman on the front line by spreading the word and helping their causes.
Chengeta Wildlife…Rory Young is a wildlife tracker and activist who has been fighting against the dark and hungry greed of poaching all his life. He is at one with the bush reading all the signs and stories left by different animals and humans. Rory, with the help of Chengeta is implementing a full time, comprehensive training program which will also enable him to provide the rangers with the resources to carry out their important work.
What happens to the orphans of these horrific and grisly attacks on the wildlife. Care for Wild represents the courageous efforts of a lady Petronel Nieuwoudt who operates in the scenic area of Barberton – just outside Nelspruit in Mpumalanga. Please take a look at the link.
‘Care in hand rearing, management and capture of infant, injured and/or orphaned animals are the passions that drive CARE forWILD AFRICA. Petronel is also one of a few who has specialized in the care of orphaned and injured rhino’s! The centre has a designated area that is especially built to cater for these magnificent species (Night pen, Day camp, Scale, etc).’
Let each and every one of us walk with purpose on our chosen paths, remembering that the majority of us two legged creatures want to stand tall and be counted. I have met and feel that I know many of my contacts through this wonderful world of technology. Like me, each and every one of them are full of weighty concerns regarding our wildlife and can no longer be silent witnesses to the carnage taking place in the bush.
My computer is one commodity I would keep in a paradise devoid of all other modern trappings. The social networks are a powerful tool to force a state of profound change.
Our African bush, the womb of the universe used to be full of vibrant scents, rich earth and animals. It was survival of the fittest. Let us not allow our wildlife to become pages of smudged photographs and memories.
As much as we feel repulsed and saddened by ugly clips and pictures, I beg each and every one of you. DO NOT LOOK AWAY. Where there are animals there is HOPE. (My poem)
We need to stand up against this corruption and greed, spread the word and help the men and women on the ground to protect the wildlife during these dark times.
Only by listening can we hear their cries
Only by looking can we see their pain.
Our elephants, rhinos and other wildlife need us. Let us celebrate their existence.