Image courtesy ©Cee4life
Please share, please educate and please help us continue to fight for there beautiful creatures and to help keep Melani going.If you can donate it is incredibly appreciated. Please go to Wildlife Calling Charity – www.wildlifecalling.org.uk and clearly mark the donation as “Surabaya” or “Melani” or “Cee4life” and it will get to us.
Dear Tiger Lovers,
We came across a terrible news yesterday when a tourist photographed the 2 yr old Sultan chewing on a plastic bag, totally unaware of it’s consequences. Research has shown that ingestion of plastic debris results in clogging of intestines leading to death due to choking or starving.
The environmental impacts resulting from the accumulation of plastic waste are huge and increasing. Plastic debris affects wildlife, human health, and the environment. The millions of tons of plastic bottles, bags, and garbage in the world’s oceans are breaking down and leaching toxins posing a threat to marine life and human. Plastic materials in landfills sink in harmful chemicals into groundwater. Chemicals added to plastics are dangerously absorbed by humans like altering hormones. The current mass packaging and other short-lived applications of plastic is simply not sustainable and acceptable. There are solutions, including material reduction, design for end-of-life re-cyclability, increased recycling capacity, development of bio-based feedstocks, strategies to reduce littering, and the change of consumer behavior. Consumers are a major actor and can minimize or eliminate the use of short-lived applications of plastic (e.g., water bottle, plastic bags). There needs to be some urgency, as the quantity of plastics produced in the first 10 years of this century is likely to approach the quantity produced in the entire last century!
The guides & drivers of Tiger Trackers have been trained to pull over while on a safari, collect plastic debris and dispose them off at designated places outside the park. But there is only so much we can do. The process of educating tourists to refrain from littering our jungles is a never ending one & all of us need to make a collective effort to stop this irresponsible & disgusting behavior !
We thank our good friend Dhirendra Godha, the editor-in-chief of the Daily newspaper, Samachar Jagat for letting us share this shocking image.
Even as I scroll down this page, the amount of Articles about this species has no comparison to that of others. NOT because they are LESS IMPORTANT, it is simply because they do not make the Headlines. Are their lives less important??? I think NOT. Do they have less Voices????? Sadly YES…..Babette De Jonge of “Wild Cats World” is dedicated to the Conservation of This Species as well as All Endangered Wild Cats. Please take an hour out of your time and Listen to what she has to say about this Incredible Species. Please help others Understand that the Leopards of this World should not carry the bad rep. that sadly they have been given because of Life in A world that has taken over their habitats.
A Very Important and informative Interview once again by Thomas Janak of Wildtimeradio.
Please check it out. The World’s Leopards Need you to xohttp://www.mixcloud.com/WILDTIMERADIO/leopards-need-your-help-in-conversation-with-babette-dejonge/
It’s Not Over Yet , So We Can’t Stop Roaring for This Boy.
The Last Remaining Petition for Tony is Still Active and Needs to Keep Circulating. Please Even if you have *Signed , please Continue to Share it with Everyone and Everywhere.
To Keep Updated on What is going on With Tony please Visit the ALDF’s website for Tony here : http://aldf.org/tony
Theresia Sufa, The Jakarta Post, Bogor | Jakarta | Mon, November 04 2013, 10:00 AM
To ensure Sumatran tigers are not being infected with the deadly canine distemper virus (CDV) that has already afflicted Siberian tigers in Russia, veterinarians at the Taman Safari Indonesia (TSI) zoo in Bogor, West Java, are planning to begin monitoring the health of tigers living in the Sumatran jungles.
Head of the TSI’s veterinary team Retno Sudarwati said that TSI veterinarians were now gathering data to perform a thorough medical examination of Sumatran tigers.
“We cannot yet determine when we will start the monitoring program, but it will begin as soon as everything is ready,” she said.
Retno added that the monitoring was extremely important because scientists had recently discovered that Siberian tigers in Russia were facing extinction not because of illegal poaching but from CDV infection.
She explained that the virus, which was first detected in dogs, could cause fatal pneumonia and encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). Tigers can contract the virus when they eat infected dogs or cats.
“We haven’t found any CDV-infected tigers in Indonesia, but it is possible that we will, especially if we don’t take action,” she said.
Retno added that there was already cause for concern, as some Indonesian tigers had displayed behavioral abnormalities similar to those displayed by CDV-infected Siberian tigers.
For example, instead of being alert and ferocious, the infected Russian cats are said to be fearful, docile and disoriented in their behavior. Retno said that she had found the same symptoms in some Sumatran tigers.
Some tigers in Bengkulu, for example, were not afraid of humans and sometimes meandered into housing complexes. In Jambi, some tigers wandered onto roads near people’s residences, she said.
Retno also said that tigers in Indonesia could be at risk because they often consumed dogs and cats.
A leopard rescued by the TSI veterinary team on Oct. 12 in a forest close to a housing complex in Sukabumi, West Java, had previously eaten local residents’ dogs and cattle, she said.
“Just like a time-bomb, this virus could spread and become an epidemic. Of course, we don’t want this to happen in Indonesia because it may cause our Sumatran tigers to go extinct,” Retno said.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) lists Sumatran tigers as a critically endangered species. The organization estimates that there are only around 400 Sumatran tigers living in the wild.
The endangered Snow leopard is a semi-large cat living in the snowy mountains of Central Asia. It has been included in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species since 1972, and has been placed in Appendix I in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. The total mature breeding population is less than 2,500.
Bones from the endangered Snow leopard is used in traditional Chinese medicine. When bones from the like ways endangered Tiger grew harder to obtain, bones from the Snow leopard became popular as a substitute which placed an even harder strain on the already diminished Snow leopard population. The endangered Snow leopard is hunted to provide
bones for the regional markets as well as for international trade.
Millionaire banker Sir David Scholey…doing this for the poor of Africa and conservation. I am sure that it has nothing to do with his limp “___”. Lying SOB and selfish, greedy, killer…that is all I see!
From his own nasty mouth, “The 72-year-old said:
“I have been hunting all over the world for many, many years and I have always hunted within the legal arrangements of the country concerned.
I regard that as an entirely personal matter,All the animals I hunt are wild beasts and even I have felt threatened by them at times”
Not threatened enough Sir David D’bag!
Our new weekly theme is kicking off today! Share your own predator and prey moments with us – wildlife, birds, insects, reptiles, as long as it took place in Africa!
PHOTOGRAPHER: Seyms Brugger
We had followed a Male Leopard for about 1 hour, when eventually we were fortunate enough to witness the kill from start to finish.
As it was dark, I decided to use only the flashlight from the game vehicle to capture the mood of the scene at hand – the approaching Leopard who was now carrying the Steenbok in its mouth.
Why this is important
The White Lion is a critically endangered animal, originating from South Africa’s Greater Timbavati region in the heart of the UNESCO Kruger-2-Canyons Biosphere Reserve region. White Lions hold significant conservation and cultural value for the indigenous Tsonga and Sepedi communities of the region and for many cultures across Africa and the world. Carrying a unique genetic marker, the White Lions are a rare phenotype with profound cultural and conservation significance. Today, there are fewer than 12 White Lions in the wilds of their endemic habitat. Despite ongoing forced removals from the K2C biosphere, this genetic rarity continues to occur and is an important part of the biodiversity of this region.
White Lions lack national and international legislative protection and are victims of habitat encroachment, poaching, and human-wildlife conflict. In particular, they are hunted as trophies in captivity through the legal ‘canned’ hunting industry. White Lions are forcibly removed from their natural habitat, sent to zoos and circuses around the globe, dismembered to provide unproven medical benefits, speed-bred in commercial captive breeding operations, and transferred from cub-petting to captive slaughter farms to be shot as tame adults.
Without increased protection, the White Lions of Greater Timbavati face extinction in the near future. We urge CITES, the IUCN and the South African Government to list the White Lion (Panthera leo tsau) as a critically endangered sub-population and increase protection measures of this rare and culturally revered animal.
Lions are considered a keystone species, a natural indicator of the health of an ecosystem; the threatened status of the White Lions and African lions in South Africa reflect a dire conservation and socio-economic situation in the Greater Timbavati region. The following statistics highlight the trophy hunting threats that White Lions and African lions face: there are over 5,000 South African lions in captivity, compared to the remaining 2,000 South African lions in the wild; there are over 160 lion-breeding farms in South Africa; lion trophy exports from South Africa increased 326% over the past 10 years; and the trophy price for a captive African lion ranges between $5,000- 25,000 USD; the trophy price for wild male White Lion is over $120,000 USD.
According to African elder and traditional healer, Credo Mutwa, African kings declared the Greater Timbavati region a sacred site long before the declaration of Kruger National Park. The name “Tsimba-vaati” is derived from the ancient XiTsonga language meaning “the place where star-lions came down”: the White Lions are the sacred heart of the Greater Timbavati region. Please help protect White Lions and the indigenous culture that reveres them: the future of the Greater Timbavati ecosystem and its people depend on our collective conservation efforts.
Global White Lion Protection Trust Overview: Founded in 2002 by author and conservationist Linda Tucker, the Global White Lion Protection Trust (WLT) is a non-profit organisation with a dual mission to protect the critically endangered White Lions and preserve the rich cultural heritage that celebrates these magnificent animals.
The WLT is headquartered in the Greater Timbavati region, the endemic habitat of the White Lion and part of the UNESCO Kruger-2-Canyons Biosphere Reserve region. The WLT collaborates with local and international communities to protect these rare iconic animals as global living heritage, of significant conservation and cultural value. The WLT ensures the survival of 3 different free roaming prides in their endemic heartlands. The recent discovery of the genetic marker after 7 years of genetic research reinforces WLT’s campaign to declare White Lions as a protected sub-species or critically endangered sub-population through international regulatory institutions. Visit www.whitelions.org for more information.
Gene studies say that the Sunderbans tiger population is identical to the tiger population of central India and has been isolated recently, may be 300-1000 years ago, from the latter.
A study by Wildlife Institute of India (WII) scientist SP Goyal and researchers Sujeet Kumar Singh and Sudhanshu Mishra claimed that historical events, change in the land-use patterns and human pressure have isolated the Sunderbans tiger population from that of central India.
“Our study has found that the gene pattern of the Sunderbans tiger is identical to the big cat population of the central India landscape, including states like Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and parts of Andhra Pradesh,” said Goyal.
An earlier study by US scientist Adam Barlow in 2009 had observed that the Sunderbans tiger is morphologically distinct in terms of skull and body size and therefore, the population can be evaluated further to determine if it’s an evolutionary significant unit.
But the WII report — Tigers of Sunderbans Tiger Reserve: Is This Population a Separate Evolutionary Significant Unit — has put to rest such possibilities for now. DNA haplotyping and fragment analysis methods were used during the study. Haplotypes are unique characters present in a genetic composition of a particular tiger population.
Goyal said Sunderbans tiger showed identical allelic or gene pattern as observed in the tigers of MP parks, including Bandhavgarh, Kanha, Pench, and reserves like Tadoba and Nagzira in Maharashtra.
Pulak Lahiri, former Nilratan Sarkar Professor of Zoology at Calcutta University, said: “Geologically, Sunderbans doesn’t have a history as old as central or northern India, so it’s possible that the mangroves’ tigers have isolated from central India landscape.”
Scientists believe while an animal isolated for a period of one million years can be classified as a different species, one that’s genetically isolated for 20,000-50,000 years can be termed as a different sub-species.
But, an earlier study by eminent scientists, John Seidensticker, Sandeep Sharma and Hemendra Panwar claimed that while tigers populated central India about 10, 000 years ago, their population subdivision began only about 1000 years ago and accelerated only 200 years ago owing to habitat fragmentation.
In historian Rajat Roy’s words, in 1756, when Siraj-Ud-Daulah recaptured the city of Kolkata (then Calcutta) from the British, today’s Salt Lake area used to be the main city then and the Lower South Circular Road that’s now known as Chowringhee used to be the city’s southern border. “Beyond that were the forests of Sunderbans and there are beliefs that tigers were often sighted in those forests which now house busy localities like Tollygunge and Behala,” said Roy, also the professor emeritus of Presidency University.
Though Goyal said only further analysis will throw light on the historical events that isolated a part of central Indian tiger population to Sunderbans, he believes that increase in urbanization and agricultural areas are the main triggers.
A key tiger landscape in central India, Satpura-Maikal, has already lost 78% forest cover to farmlands and urbanization. In the last 300 years, there was 22-fold increase in agricultural area and 25-fold rise in urbanization in this landscape.
The WII study has also found highest population differentiation between Sunderbans tigers and north Indian tigers, compared to central Indian tigers, which, according to Goyal, only proves that Sunderbans tigers are genetically more close to central Indian big cat population.
Additional PCCF (wildlife) Pradeep Vyas said the tigers of Sunderbans have definitely come from somewhere. “And this study throws some light on it. If the British rulers didn’t declare the Sunderbans as reserve forest sometime around 1880, the tiger population would have isolated far beyond,” he said, adding that this should not be a conclusive study and further experimentation should be encouraged.
Support for an online campaign calling for an end to the trade in lion bones has surged to a new record.
In an incredible leap of faith that speaks volumes for worldwide concern over the future and fate of African lions, the global online Avaaz advocacy campaign that calls for South Africa to end the trade, announced this week that its campaign support had virtually surged overnight, mushrooming to a record new high of more than a million signatures.
And now Avaaz, which has the backing of more than 27 million members globally, is asking for another tidal wave of support to reach 1.25 million voices.
This firmly puts the heat on the South African government to end the much reviled canned lion hunting industry and clarify its national position on conservation which currently allows the export of lion bones and carcasses to Asia where they are ground into powder as a cake mix.
The surge in momentum comes after the Johannesburg High Court ruled in Avaaz’s favour recently on controversial campaign posters.
The court ruling injected new life into the campaign, which collected more than 250 000 additional signatures in less than a week.
In August last year, Airports Company SA, worried about a political backlash that would turn into a public relations nightmare, demanded that the advertising arm of media giant Primedia pull down the Avaaz posters at OR Tambo Airport within 24 hours.
The posters show a lioness looking down the barrel of a gun with an image of a thoughtful President Jacob Zuma superimposed in the background.
The caption reads, “President Zuma Can Save Her Life”.
Underneath the poster the campaign sponsor’s name is printed with the message: “Our lions are being slaughtered to make bogus sex potions for Asia. Will President Zuma save them? Urge him to stop the deadly trade now.”
“Ripping down these ads smacks of censorship and silences the voices of 700 000 people who care deeply about saving South Africa’s lions.
“Instead of worrying about bad PR at the baggage carousel, government authorities should be acting to stop the brutal trade in lion bones,” Patel said.
Avaaz filed a legal challenge arguing that Acsa violated the constitution’s guarantee of freedom of expression when it censored the ads, as well as the constitution’s guarantee of fair administrative process.
Judge Frank Bashall ruled that Acsa had violated the public’s constitutional right to freedom of expression, and prejudiced Avaaz by denying them fair administrative procedure.
Ian Bassin campaign director for Avaaz, welcomed the decision.
“Acsa has kept these posters down long enough, while the fate of South Africa’s lions is hanging in the balance.
“They tried to exercise the kind of censorship that has no place in democracies, and it backfired, as it always does when you attempt censorship.”
Acsa studied the court ruling for a week before taking the decision not to oppose the court’s order to reinstate the posters.
Spokeswoman Unathi Batyashe-Fillis said: “We certainly regret how the matter was handled in as far as not having had clear standards to guide not only our concessionaires, but more importantly our employees as well, when it came to evaluating potentially objectionable/offensive or factually incorrect advertising content without necessarily infringing upon rights to free speech.
“We will certainly ensure that the court order is adhered to and that the posters, as per the verdict, are reinstated.
“Acsa will abide by the decision of the court regarding the removal of the anti-lion trade campaign posters in August 2012 from its arrival terminal at OR Tambo International Airport.
“In line with the ruling, the company will allow Avaaz to place the anti-lion trade campaign posters for the remainder of the contract period,” she added.
The company says it is currently reviewing its advertising content approval processes and procedures to prevent such incidences from reoccurring.
Primedia did not oppose the Avaaz court action, and Acsa was ordered to pay legal costs.
The rhino poaching crisis, also orchestrated by Asian organised crime syndicates who sell the horns as a cure-all potion, mainly in China and Vietnam, has plunged South African wildlife conservation into the abyss with over 800 rhino slaughtered so far in 2013. – Sunday Independent