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"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world;
indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." 
Margaret Mead, American anthropologist, 1901-1978

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  1. So yesterday I was having a canter around the BBC website and having a browse and I came across a video made by the Wild Horses of Alberta Society.

    The Society is "committed to the preservation of these magnificent animals in their natural environment" and they have a number of videos on their You Tube page which I must say I did enjoy.  

    As well as informing the public about the history of these wonderful horses, the Society  is also working with the government to establish reasonable and achievable wild horse population management solutions, and also another objective I particularly like is their work to promote the welfare of wild horses by rescuing, gentling and rehoming of wild horses providing veterinary care.

    They also have a wild horse adoption programme.

    Of course, being a horse lover I had to have a look, and the video was just wonderful!   The wilds of Alberta, the care the people took of these wild horses and the spirit of the horses was just - for me - really moving.  

    Here's one of their videos, A Year with the Wild Horses - do take a look!


    The organisation entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the province of Alberta back in November 2014 - a 5 year agreement.  It means WHOAS can run 2 programmes in a large area of the Sundre Equine Zone - 

    1. Firstly, a contraception program for wild horse mares - this should help manage horse populations
    2. Secondly, an adoption program so that WHOAS can rescue wild horses in trouble on private land or that are found abandoned or injured.

    It's always interesting to see how people are working to help animals and I do wish the Society well in its work.

    Click here to visit the Wild Horses of Alberta Society's website



  2. The 31st July is a special day in the calendar for wildlife protection.   World Ranger Day  commemorates Rangers killed or injured in the line of duty.  And it celebrates the amazing work Rangers do around the world to protect the natural world. 

    The event is organised by the International Ranger Federation which works to raise awareness of and support the critical work rangers do. Its membership comprises of 63 ranger associations from 46 countries on 6 continents.  It seeks "to empower rangers by supporting their national or state ranger organizations, or assisting in the establishment of local ranger associations in countries where they do not currently exist".  You can find out more about it here

    World Rangers Day gives us all a chance to show our support and appreciation for the amazing men and women who defend wildlife on the front line of conservation.

    For over 30 years, the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation has been standing with the world’s rangers every day.  This morning, I received an email to remind me of the way in which rangers work to protect wildlife and how the charity supports them.  I hope they will forgive me for relaying their email to you;  but it does sum up well the different types of work rangers are involved with.   

    Types of wildlife ranger include the following:

    Wildlife Rangers watch over wildlife.  They may care for young orphaned elephants until these wonderful majestic animals can re-join a release herd.  Some keep wildlife safe, often risking their own lives against the poachers.  

    Community Rangers raise awareness amongst local communities to make sure they understand how protecting wildlife can be beneficial; and also helping them live alongside them.  Some rangers have created women’s groups, making and selling crafts, so that locals have an alternative income.

    Intelligence and Investigation Rangers disrupt illegal wildlife trade routes and eliminate poaching hotspots.  They work day and night against the poachers. They are intelligence-led enforcement units, who are putting their lives on the line every day to protect wildlife.

    Veterinary Rangers help advise how best to look after vulnerable animals and give them a second chance at life


    DSWF has been busy enabling rangers to remove traps and snares..

    About 90% of wildlife caught in snares are simply left to rot.  Snares are just pieces of wire, shaped in a loop and anchored down.   They are cheap and easy to make - and virtually impossible for animals to escape from. As animals struggle to escape, the result is that the wire grows tighter.  Wounds get deeper.  The animal suffers a long, agonising death.

    The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation funds ranger patrols in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Uganda.  Every day, these rangers remove thousands of traps and snares.  Rangers report that as a result, they are now finding just one or two snares and traps whereas before, they would have removed hundreds.   This makes the area much safer for wildlife. 

    The equipment used to make snares and traps are turned to good use for other purposes and crucially the money earned from them is put to fight poachers and make life safer for wildlife. 

    You can help support these brave rangers by giving to the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation’s ongoing Appeal.  Your help will enable the charity to train and equip more rangers to patrol these areas and you'll also help destroy the traps and snares found so that wildlife can't get trapped in them. 

    Donate by 12th September 2017, and a kind supporter will match the first £10,000 in donations.  They will do this until the September date or until the £10,000 is reached, whichever happens first.  You can use GiftAid in the UK to your unmatched donation.

    Donate here to the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation's Appeal

  3.     Click here to waddle away to Falklands Conservation
    © Falklands Conservation

    Last year, I adopted a King Penguin from a scheme run by Falklands Conservation.

    One of the great things about doing this is knowing that your penguin adoption is making a difference.  And today, I received my Penguin Adopter's Newsletter.  

    The newsletter mentioned that they are using drones to count breeding pairs of penguins.   Falklands Conservation think the drones have big potential for improving and enhancing their monitoring of penguins in the Falklands - the drones will give a permanent record of the colonies which can be referred to and re-analysed in the future.

    Back in November 2016, they tested drones over the penguin colonies to see how they reacted to a drone over them.  The penguins didn't react if the drone was launched at a afe distance away from them, and kept to a safe distance above them, so Falklands Conservation hope to develop guidelines for the safe use of drones with wildlife in the Falkland Islands.  It's important that the drones are used correctly and safely and that they don't disturb wildlife so these guidelines should be very useful for tourists and any other drone users.

    Visit Falklands Conservation here

  4. The IUCN  says that over 111,000 elephants have been poached in the 10 years before 2016.  

    So it's good news to hear that Namibia’s Environment Ministry will get help worth US$1.8 million from the U.S. Embassy to fight wildlife trafficking.  Anything that can be done to help combat this terrible crime will help many animals.

    The grant will be implemented in partnership with Namibian NGOs such as Intelligence Support Against Poaching, Legal Assistance Centre, Namibia Nature Foundation NNF, Natural Resources Working Group and Save the Rhino Trust.


    Source:  Newsghana.com.gh

    More useful information on global wildlife trafficking:   Visit TRAFFIC




    Great news from Vietnam for bears!

    The Vietnamese government has now agreed a plan to end bear bile farming in the country with Animals Asia.

    The Memorandum of Understanding outlines an agreement between Animals Asia nad the Vietnam Adminsistration of Forestry to work together to rescue the bears who are still caged on farms across Vietnam.  It is estimated that there are about 1,000 of them.  The Memo was signed and announced on Wednesday 19 July at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

    Essentially, the Memo commits the Vietnamese government to making sure that no bears are allowed to be kept by private households.  (It’s here that illegal bile extraction could take place.)    And the 1,000 bears currently held captive will be moved to sanctuaries. 

    Vietnam Director of Animals Asia, Tuan Bendixsen, said “This historic document ties NGOs and the government of Vietnam to a common goal – the end of bear bile farming in Vietnam.” 

    Bear bile farming was harming wild bears, whose population was dwindling, so hopefully the agreement will help show that the country is serious about the country’s remaining wild bears and protecting the heritage of future generations. 

    Key issues moving forward will be:

    1. How to fund and manage the sanctuaries
    2. How to proceed with the transfer of privately owned bears to rescue centres

    It is expected that new sanctuaries will need to be built, and help sought from existing sanctuaries run by animal conservation and welfare charities. 

    Animals Asia’s Founder and CEO, Jill Robinson MBE said:  “This agreement has been a long time coming with discussions beginning around 2014, so to see it finalised is a major step forward. This, of course, doesn’t end the work. Quite the opposite, but it now means we work together with a common goal – to end this cruelty. We’ve essentially sat down with the government and made a list of what needs to be completed to end bear bile farming and agreed to work through these issues together.

    The agreement will need the support and participation of many groups, NGO’s, government departments and animal lovers to make it happen, but Jill Robinson says, “pivotally we are all in agreement about what has to be done and now we can get on with seeing it through.”

    Click here to go to Animals Asia