The reports keep coming. I’m having to start at 4am now just to keep up. We have to go into the jungle to do some work at the Leopard Refuge Station soon and in the hot weather energy gets sapped, especially as protein is getting hard to find. You can’t just pop down the shops and get what you want, people are now pretty much on what can be grown. So pacing oneself during the day is important.
I mentioned about ten days ago that as the humanitarian crisis worsens so does the level of poaching. Understanding the dynamics of this is vital. There’s no doubt many snare traps are being set simply to target food but equally there is a degree of opportunism by poachers in their perception they can operate more easily, which in many situations is proving to be true.
The leopard in the image was still alive as of last night, it’s another case in Rajasthan. I’ll know more soon but as I say, it’s really important to follow up to try and find out who was involved and why, given the reasons I’ve mentioned above.
It’s become a real battle. There’s so many incidents I can’t mention and there simply isn’t time to write about them all anyway. There was always going to be a huge cost to wildlife once the pandemic started and many people really are desperate, the migrant worker situation is sad and disturbing. The poachers who are simply taking advantage of the situation, I mean the ones who are not food insecure, are people who operate anyway, that’s the raw reality of this. Action now is simply about saving every wild animal possible but many are dying and more will. We have to do our best. More soon re #AntiSnare.
Appended on World Environment Day 05 June 2020:
Appended 08 June 2020, some passionate words from Valmik Thapar linking our treatment of wildlife and the current pandemic. If you don’t use Facebook the video is also on YouTube further down the page.
From Facebook 08 June 2020: I WISH EVERYONE HAD VALMIK’S PASSION… It’s going to be another busy day, some jungle work this morning and then continued follow up including the case in Assam yesterday mentioned in the previous posts. This video, with the passionate and dedicated Valmik Thapar pretty much nails issues re our treatment of wildlife linking problems such as the current pandemic. It came via Debbie Banks, and Debbie along with the equally redoubtable Belinda Wright are mentioned for their tireless work. There are good battling hard for wildlife in these times of disturbing biodiversity loss but there are also those who are exploiting wild animals, this takes many forms. Let’s not pretend these people don’t know what they are doing, it is naive to believe negative human traits can be fixed just through awareness, there are people who just don’t care and the dishonesty and cruelty is what confronts those on the ground battling for wildlife, ultimately killing the animals themselves. Conservation models have to fall more in line that dynamic, it’s the unfortunate truth of humanity that there are always those who will try and prosper at the expense of others. Wildlife crime is at the expense of all. Our systems to combat this need overhauling, there are people working on that right now, more soon.
Appended later pm 08 June 2020