Is it the Mara Triangle or an orphanage for three cheetah cubs?

Three cheetah cubs are the center of controversy brewing in Kenya’s Mara Triangle, which is managed by the Mara Conservancy. The link I have provided describes the circumstances surrounding the three orphans.

Their precarious state represents the quandary officials face when tasked to protect a species. 

Please click on CHEETAH to read the article

 

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Wildlife and plastic bags

Plastic bags – a convenience for our society with a plethora of uses, but not so for wildlife.

Increasingly, these bags or plastic containers are shown in news footage enshrouding the head of an inquisitive animal, or much worse smothering the animal to death after attempts to eat it.

Now these plastic products of doom have made their way into parks, reserves and conservancies in Kenya.  I’m not even getting into how they have been introduced into those areas – that’s a given, but there is something we can do to stop this.

A link is attached to sign a petition on change.org to support the ban on polythene bags in Kenya.  Please sign – Kenya’s wildlife will be forever grateful!

To sign the petition click on:     plastic bags

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Game drive guidelines are here!

Since I wrote stories on wildlife harassment and game drive guidelines, readers have been requesting copies.  Therefore, I have created a tab “game drive guidelines” on this site where you can click and download your PDF copy of those guidelines to take with you on safari or to pass on to someone who is!

Almost off on game drive Salt Lick Lodge

 

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May 2012 be a better year for the world’s wildlife

Happy New Year to all and many blessings for 2012!

I pray that 2012 will bring solutions to the many issues that plague the world’s wildlife: poaching, human/wildlife conflict, wildlife harassment, vanishing habitat, trophy hunting and the bushmeat trade.

As this last day of 2011 comes to a close, it is very sad to hear that three lions have been killed in Nairobi National Park – a result of human/wildlife conflict.  So I pray that news such as this will be few and far between in 2012.

I’ve decided that I will make a conscious effort to write more articles about wildlife that are upbeat and positive.  Perhaps about that conservation group making a difference or that the Maasai actually decided not to kill a lion in retribution.

If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them!

Happy New Years!

 

 

 

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Humans are the predators…

Each year 600 lion hunting permits are sold in Africa with 556 of those going to Americans.

Photo taken by Mary Purvis

Filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert, who live in Botswana and document the lives of lions mentioned this on Nightline last night. Their documentary “The Last Lions” will air during National Geographic’s Big Cat Week.

With Africa’s big cat population declining rapidly for a variety of reasons, lions are having a hard enough time without hunters butting in.

How do we stop these hunters before they butcher lions into extinction?  They have all sorts of excuses why it is ok to hunt these majestic creatures. Do they think there is a bottomless pit of wildlife to kill for their enjoyment, and that they are here just for them to hunt? 

Somehow the selling of these hunting licenses must be stopped, and awareness is the first step.

If this is not stopped along with other atrocities against big cats, then there is a good chance that our great-grandchildren will never see a big cat in the wild, and that infuriates me no-end.

National Geographic channel’s Big Cat Week commences Sunday, December 11th with the airing of “The Last Lions” on Friday, December 16th. 

The link for the Nightline segment is below:

http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/jouberts-film-worlds-lions-expose-peril-big-cats/story?id=15117528

National Geographic’s web-site has further information:  www.causeanuproar.org

Please pass the links along – it’s so important!

 

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Wildlife harassment

I’ve just finished posting the first three parts of my series on wildlife harassment in Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve.

I was unable to attach the video to part three due to a software glitch, so here it is:

Thank you Margaret for filming this! It brings to the world a vital issue that needs to be resolved and soon!     Please click below to view:

Leopard harassment in Maasai Mara  documented by Margaret Lamont

 

 

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The debacle of wildlife harassment

Anyone who has ever been on safari has seen the scenario of a multitude of vehicles loaded with tourists up way too close and personal with wildlife, usually carnivores.

tourist crowding in front of a leopard

Years ago during my first trip to Kenya, I was one of those participants.  The driver tore after a cheetah that was going for a kill.  When the dust settled we all had amazing photos.

It wasn’t until later I realized what the driver had done, and what the ramifications were.  I had no idea it was wrong, since safari code and conduct had never been discussed.

Because of my experiences I have written a nine part series about wildlife harassment.  In the process I realized I dug up more questions than answers and only touched the surface – but it’s a start.

So here’s the link to part one:

wildlife harassment taints Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve

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The tragedy of poaching

This video may have been filmed in 2002, but it’s timeless and continues to drive home the tragedy of poaching.  Please click on the link for the video.

Wanted Dead or Alive

Please check out African Environmental Film Foundation’s site for additional information

 

 

 

 

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The world’s wildlife need our support

There’s a reason why animals that are not traditional pets or farm animals are called wildlife. They are meant to stay wild. Not hoarded. Not bought for someone’s pleasure. Not stuffed in cages or paraded around in a circus. Not cooped up in zoos that are unable to provide for creatures needing immense acreage. Not dominated like inferior beings.

Leopard circa 1983 by Mary Purvis

Ohio’s scandalous shooting of way too many exotic animals gave us pause. It takes a tragedy such as this for state officials to realize that laws need to be in place in order to have dominion over humans who insist on acting out the wrong definition of dominion over wildlife.

Enactment of new laws will prevail, but it doesn’t solve the world’s wildlife crisis.

Africa’s poaching epidemic is now a catastrophe. Habitats around the world are disappearing for one reason or another.  Human/wildlife conflicts are becoming common. The bushmeat trade is on the rise.

A group that has said enough to these issues and is gaining momentum is “Kenyans for Wildlife.” Originating in Nairobi, members are comprised of Kenyans and individuals from around the globe who care about Kenya’s wildlife heritage and are concerned about its precarious state.

Now that we’ve seen the occupation of Wall Street go global, perhaps it’s about time to start our own occupation – An international wildlife occupation.   

The seed has been planted for an international wildlife movement. If we wait it’s too late.

There’s a reason why humans are collectively called mankind. We have an inherent kindness and capacity to care for the creatures we share this earth with, not eliminate them. They are counting on us.

To join Kenyans for Wildlife please go to their Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/kenyansforwildlife

 

 

 

 

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Did the translocation of elephants into Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve backfire?

Translocation of elephants from Narok North into Maasai Mara was on the Kenya Wildlife Service’s (KWS) agenda during September. According to the KWS, as of a few days ago phase one is complete and a huge success. 

But how does one define success when two of those elephants are now dead?

Near Mara Serena Lodge circa 1983

 

Increased human/wildlife conflict, which is an ongoing issue in Kenya, prompted the move.  Information obtained from the KWS stated that 200 elephants had been cut off from the greater Mara ecosystem and were creating havoc in Narok North.

Over a ten year period a total of 9,299 human/wildlife conflict cases occurred in the area with 5,052 of those, or 54 percent, inflicted by elephants. So after continued monitoring by KWS researchers, the first 62 elephants were told to pack their bags.

The KWS loves to relocate wildlife – hippos from a Nairobi sewer treatment plant, hundreds of zebra and rhino into Meru National Park, a virtual revolving door of wildlife from one area to the next. Most of the time movements go as planned.

This time, over a two week period, a team of veterinarians, KWS officials and scientists tranquilized, then plucked the pachyderms by cranes placing them into moving vans.

Scientists are now monitoring the new transplants for any residual effects. Once they have decided the elephants are settling into their new home and the rains gone, phase two will begin.

But apparently, two elephants escaped the monitoring process, paid an unwelcome visit to their new neighbors in Kisii, west of Mara, and were promptly killed.

Is there no safe place for these creatures?

These days questions and controversy how to solve the poaching and human/wildlife conflicts are growing just as fast as the crises themselves. Solutions are few.

Backed by solid research, the KWS intentions are good, but are they just slapping a band aid on a multi-faceted problem that will never go away until stricter enforcement is in place on both sides?

I present these questions as this is a crisis. I would like to hear from you, what you think and feel about the state of wildlife in Kenya.

I have had to disable my comments box – too much spam – but you can find my contact information on the contact page as well as commenting on facebook.

This article was also posted on examiner.com

 

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