Actions for Animals

 
"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.  

    Fauna and Flora International (FFI) have an urgent appeal right now to help elephants in Vietnam.

    They are urging us all to help by 20 December 2022, and they need to raise £99,819.00 for elephants.

    What's the problem?

    Vietnam’s elephants have been plagued by years of sprawling development, the expansion of agriculture, and the impact of war.  These things have destroyed their habitat.  Poachers have moved in on the animals who did survive.

    Vietnam’s rhino have died, and Fauna and Flora suspect the tigers there have died too. 

    Official numbers estimate that just 91 elephants are left.  That’s 91 elephants.  Are they beyond saving?

    There's hope for the 91 elephants left

    There is hope for the elephants, thanks to new camera-trap research by FFI.   They received a grant to determine whether any elephants had indeed survived in the Pu Mat National Park.  The park is a key area which was thought to be one of their four strongholds.  It lines the coast. And the research shows without doubt that the elephants are alive and probably breeding.

    There is a chance – one chance – to save Vietnam’s elephants.

    The plan to save Vietnam's elephants

    Time is of the essence.  The elephants keep drifting off into human communities, outside of the forest.  And they can easily destroy fields full of crops and fences.  Two people have been killed.   The elephants need to be removed.

    FFI have a plan to avert the most imminent threats and to raise the awareness of locals of how important these animals are.

    Visit Fauna and Flora International to find out more
    Image © Fauna and Flora International


    The plan has three parts:

    1. To build an emergency warning system,

      The elephants’ whereabouts are unknown – they could be heading to local communities or towards deadly roads, railroads or power-lines.  FFI has secured state of the art elephant collars from a project in Myanmar that no longer needed them.  They need to create a vet team to find the elephants, tranquilise them and fit the collars.  Then they can create a warning system when the elephants are moving to areas that would be dangerous to them.  It costs £245 to tranquilise and collar an elepha
      nt. 

    2. To equip local protection teams.  

      Once FFI have received an alert, protection teams can head to the area on motorbike to keep local people and elephants safe.  Equipment to make a noise such as speakers and fireworks will make sure the elephants give a wide berth to the area and that they head back to the forest.  This takes fuel, equipment and wages for those people doing this work.  £95 could fund one emergency response whilst £45 could buy the noise making equipment. 

    3. To build natural barriers.  

      Fences are easily destroyed by the elephants.  They could get trapped in ditches, so FFI are looking and more innovative barriers which have been successful in other parts in the world in keeping people and elephants apart.   One possibility includes planting chillies along the fields which border the forests – these will irritate the elephants’ trunks so they will look for different food sources.  And the farmers will benefit from selling the chillies.  £23 could provide a sack of chilli seeds.

    FFI is also looking at buying drones (£980 a drone) to track and monitor the elephants at a safe distance.  This could give a huge advantage to FFI in getting the animals away from crisis situations.

    Strategies like this have worked well elsewhere in the world, so FFI are looking for funding fast to see if these can work in Vietnam before things get worse for the elephants. 

    Visit Fauna and Flora International to find out more and donate

  2. The Archers Green Appeal in Hertfordshire needs our help!

    The Hertfordshire and Middlesex Wildlife Trust are trying to raise £500,000 to buy land which has vulnerable habitats.  The 20 acre site is near Welwyn Garden City and it has wildlife such as the water vole, harebell and skylark.  Water voles are the UK’s fastest declining mammals.

    The funds are needed to pay back a philanthropic loan which was used to take the site off the market.  At the time, the Trust had to act very fast to save the site and stop it falling into “unsympathetic” hands.

    It is vital to protect more land for wildlife and Archers Green flanks a river which is one of only 240 chalk streams in the world – the River Mimram.  The Trust says rivers like this are the UK’s equivalent to tropical rainforest.  It also has grasslands, critical habitat for wildlife. So action had to be taken really fast.

    If the funds aren’t raised, it maybe that the site has to go back on the open market.


    Find out more about the Appeal; please donate if you can!

    You can donate to this appeal with the 
    Big Give Christmas Challenge 
    which runs from 29 November to midday 6 December 2022
    when donations are doubled
    One donation, twice the impact!
    Donate here

    The other key thing about Archers Green is that it sits between the Tewinbury Nature Reserve and Panshager Park.   Wildlife need connected landscapes because these areas enable them to move around and to breed.  So if the funds can be raised, it means that the Trust can ensure the safety of the land for wildlife.

    The Trust points out that the areas has already lost crucial wildlife homes and corridors.  76 species went with that loss, leaving 1,446 under the threat of extinction.

    What will the funds be used for?

    • To pay back the philanthropic loans – this will mean that the site can be taken off the market.
    • To cover initial establishment costs such as fencing installation, tree safety, ash die back mitigation, monitoring activities and livestock grazing.  And to cover the management of the site on a daily basis for up to 20 years.

    If the funds can’t be raised, it may be that the remaining costs can be met from the financial reserves but this would mean taking key funds away from other nature reserves which also need managing and improving.

    We need to save land for wildlife.
    Wildlife need us to help them.


    As I write, the Trust says they are 26% of the way there and they only have 85 days left to raise the funds (that's on 7 November 2022 at 11:10am).  Please support it if you can.  Every single bit helps.

    Visit the Hertfordshire and Middlesex Wildlife Trust's website

    View the Trust's You Tube videos

     

  3.  

    It's Giving Tuesday on 29th November, and there are a number of charities taking part including (and these are by no means all there are!):

    The Snow Leopard Trust  - donations up to $100,000 will be doubled up to and including the 29th November 2022.  (This has been extended by a day, looking at their website)

    Vital Ground:  Several generous Vital Ground supporters have launched their end-of-the-year $100,000 matching challenge, so donations on 29th November 2022 will be matched dollar for dollar, helping protect crucial habitat in the Northern Rockies for grizzly bears, wolves, deer and elk, native trout and much more

    Rainforest Foundation US is raising $50,000 to expand our forest protection programs in the Brazilian Amazon, which, in recent years, has been slammed with record levels of deforestation and land degradation. 

    Wildlands Network is looking to raise $7,500 to ensure the future of North America's biodiversity.  Invest in continental-scale conservation of wildife habitat and migration corridors.  Contributions will support connected landscapes, enableing plants and wildlife to thrive. On Giving Tuesday, generous anonymous donors are matching your tax-deductible donation dollar-for-dollar, up to $7,500. Help them meet our goal!

    Sloth Conservation - they are turning 20 hectares of primary forest in the South Carribean into a sloth reserve and scientific station. A donation of just $5 will contribute one square meter to this crucial project.  You could also Sponsor a Sloth Crossing to help connect the habitat and help sloths (and other animals) cross roads safely or plant sloth-friendly trees to provide homes and food to sloths and other wildlife.  This will also restore  habitat in urbanized area

    Space for Giants - they want to raise funds to help protect Africa's landscapes from climate change.  It wants to create space by protectingi the vital landscapes that are vital for a healthy planet.  $50 will protect 25 acres (10 hectares) of indigenous wildlife habitats;  $100 will secure the future of 50 acres (20 hectares).   Donate here

    Help captive bears - International Animal Rescue need to build a new, state-of-the-art rescue centre so that they can save every single suffering bear and give them the love and care they need!   They have run out of room and need to build for bears.   Find out more and donate here - donations are doubled until the end of December.

    Tigers4ever urgently need to provide 850 warm winter jackets for the brave men and women who risk their lives every day to keep wild tigers safe.  Donate here

    Red Panda Network wants to double the area of red panda habitat they are restoring — to over 100 hectares! — and plant another 100,000 trees in red panda habitat in 2022. Their goal is to plant 200,000 trees  in Nepal and restore at least 100 hectares of degraded red panda habitat in 2023!  They also plan to purchase 25 of these hectares. Every dollar donated in November and December will be matched x2 by First Panda Challengers to protect red pandas and restore their habitat!  Find out more

    Seacology focuses exclusively on protecting island ecosystems and supporting the communities that depend on them.   Please find out more here

    Sea turtles need help to survive on the coasts of Central America.  Paso Pacífico rangers are ready to help.  Please help turtles survive and also help the communities who are best positioned to protect them.  Find out more from Paso Pacifico

    Please keep checking back for more information on Giving Tuesday!

  4.   

    In Victoria, Australia, the Koala Leaders Unite rally was held on 18 November at the state Premier’s Office.  

    It was held a week before the state election there, and it took place at the then Premier Dan Andrew's office.  It was attended by almost 50 people and the Koala Clancy Foundation  and Ballarat Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation are co-hosted the event in the hope that voters will consider koalas when they vote, and that the public rally will make the next government sit up and take action.

    The Koala Leaders Unite rally was held just before the election in Victoria, Australia

    The Koala Leaders Unite rally was held just before
    the election in Victoria, Australia outside the Premier's office.
    Image © Danielle Judd

    Koala Leaders gave 6 speeches stories about koala deaths and declines in the region – all driven by state government policies of neglect and contempt.and they included:

    The Koala Leaders Unite rally sent a strong message - koala habitat needs urgent protection
    The Koala Leaders Unite rally sent a strong message
    - koala habitat needs urgent protection
    Image © Danielle Judd

    Koala Commandments for the next state Premier

    Advocates for koalas have compiled urgent demands to save Victorian koalas.  They will be delivered to the next state Premier. 

    Here are the Koala Commandments

    The Commandments have been signed by a conservation groups

    The Koala Commandments have been signed by 16 groups including: 

    Koala Clancy Foundation

    Ballarat Wildlife Rehabilitation & Conservation

    Friends of Alberton West Forest / Mel & the Menagerie

    International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)

    Wombat Forestcare

    Blessings of the Bush Koala Shelter

    Australian Forests & Climate Alliance (AFCA)

    Mornington Peninsula Koala Conservation

    Fair Go For Wildlife Shelter

    Reach Out Wildlife Australia

    Victorian Forest Alliance

    Animalia Wildlife Shelter

    Wombat Action Group

    Environment East Gippsland 

    Southern Koala SKAT Project 

     

    Koalas need habitat to survive and thrive - too many have lost their habitats because of bushfires, logging and development
    Koalas need habitat to survive and thrive -
    too many have lost their habitats
    because of bushfires, logging and development
    Images ©  Koala Clancy Foundation

    For like any species, koalas need habitat to survive and thrive, and nearly 50,000 koalas are about to die in Blue Gum plantations.  State owned logging operations are causing the death of the rare, genetically distinct Strzelecki koalas in the area of South Gippsland.  People are telling the Koala Clancy Foundation that koalas have disappeared.

    Coming up to the election...

    Despite the deaths of thousands of koalas in bush fires fuelled by climate change, the Dan Andrews government was pushing ahead with plans to drill for gas near the Twelve Apostles.  If this happens, unless koala lovers speak up, the Victorian koalas will soon be endangered.

    Koalas need us to stretch out and give our support
    Koalas need us to stretch out and give our support
    Images ©  Koala Clancy Foundation

    The state government hasn’t even updated its Koala Management Strategy since the last one was written in 2004.  The state government says that nearly 50,000 koalas are living in the Blue Gum plantations in south west Victoria – these plantations are all due to be logged.

    Where will those koalas go?

    What will they eat?

    Doesn’t the state government even care?

    And if it does say it cares, why is it destroying koala habitat, when it says there are about 50,000 koalas in the area it is going to log?

    What will this koala do for somewhere to live now?  What will the koala eat?

    Please visit the websites above and see if there is anything you can do to get involved, wherever you are.  Wildlife need us and the more people who join in to help in whatever way they can, the better.

    Wildlife need habitat to survive and thrive.



  5. Change.org has a petition called Bug the new PM:  Save nature in your first 100 days of government.

    The  Organic Trade Board began the petition which now has over 48,000 signatures.

    Nature is falling silent

    Nature used to buzz loudly but her voices are being silenced.  We need to shout loud and clear for nature, for the earthworms, ladybirds and bees.  They have no voice, and no choice in the pesticides and fertilisers that are being sprayed on crops which lead to their decline.

    Please sign the petition here
    Please sign the petition
    Bug the Prime Minister here

    Nature is vital

    Insects are vital to a balanced ecosystem.  They are food for other animals.  And one in three mouthfuls of foods depends on our pollinators – we’d be in trouble without them.

    And organic farming can help

    Organic farming works with nature and encourages our pollinators  such as lady birds, bees and butterflies.  So plant, insect and bird life is 50% more abundant on organic farms – wild bees are 7 times more on organic grain fields.

    Substitute pesticides for farming practices which are more sustainable and this could slow or even reverse the decline in insects.

    About the petition: Bug the Prime Minister

    On behalf of the UK organic industry and nature, the Organic Trade Board (OTB), its partners and 150 members are using the petition on Change.org to give nature a voice.

    It is asking that, in their first 100 days of government, the new Prime Minister commits to PROTECTING nature in policies. And represents the UK at COP15, the UN Biodiversity Conference, in December.

    Even step helps keep to the keyworkers of nature thriving, so please take this step and sign the petition.

    Please sign the petition here

     

    The illustration by Kate Pankhurst, a children’s author and illustrator.  Kate is also a relation of Emmeline Pankhurst, who was a Suffragette

    More information to take a look at

    Go Organic - the website for Organic UK, the Organic Trade Board

    Buglife  is dedicated to conservation, education and policy change to protect insects, bugs and invertebrates. Find out more about insects, bugs and invertebrates and how you can help

    Garden Organic – the charity points out there are 15 million gardens in the UK.  If they were all cared for organically, it would create far better environment for people, plants and wildlife!  Do check out their Peat Free pages – there’s lots of help and advice

    The Wildlife Trusts have an Action for Insects campaign with ways in which individuals, councils and schools can help