TSUNAMIS COULD WIPE OUT THE REMAINING 62 JAVAN RHINOS

Javan rhinos used to roam widely throughout southeastern Asia, but poaching and habitat loss has reduced their numbers and range immensely. Today, they are only found in Ujung Kulon National Park, on the Indonesian island of Java. New research suggests they may be even more vulnerable to extinction than thought.

In the largest survey to date, researchers placed motion-activated cameras at nearly 200 locations throughout the park. After analyzing the large amount of video collected, they determined that only 62 Javan rhinos remain in the wild. These few live in low-lying areas that could be inundated by a tsunami, researchers write in a study describing their findings, published in the journal Conservation Letters .

By virtue of their location, such an event is likely in the not-too-distant future; The rhinos happen to live in a tectonically and volcanically active neighborhood. Just to the south of Java, the Australian plate slides beneath the southeastern corner of the Eurasian plate, creating a deep trough called the Javan (or Sunda) trench. This area is prone to earthquakes, like the one that created the devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Researchers calculate that if the same size wave hit western Java, which could’ve happened if the tsunami occurred slightly to the southeast, it would “have put most, if not all, rhinos at risk from drowning,” write the authors.

And a tsunami of this size—reaching a maximum “run-up” of 48 meters (155 feet) above sea level—would not be necessary to cause serious damage. The researchers conclude that a tsunami that made it to 10 meters, or 33 feet, above sea level would threaten 80 percent of the rhinos’ territory. Such a tsunami will probably occur in the next 100 years, says corresponding author Brian Gerber, a postdoctoral researcher at Colorado State University.

The park also happens to sit about 50 miles from one of the world’s most fearsome volcanoes: Anak Krakatoa. It is the “offspring” of the Krakatoa volcano which erupted in 1883, the most cataclysmic in modern history, the reverberations of which were felt around the world. Anak Kratoa, which means “childs of Krakatoa,” has been growing from the destroyed remnants of this volcanic island ever since. If it erupts before 2040 scientists estimate it could create tsunamis that reach up to nearly 70 feet above sea level. If it erupts after then, the waves could rise to heights of almost 100 feet.

For this reason, a second population of Javan rhinos needs to be established to increase the likelihood of their survival, Gerber says. It also underscores the importance of protecting the animals from being poached for their horns, which are incorrectly thought to have medicinal value. The rhino horn trade is responsible for the depletion of rhinos around the world, including the mainland subspecies of the Javan rhino, the last of which was poached in Vietnam in 2009.

The “study provides good momentum for our efforts to save the Javan rhino, considering that we are racing against time,” says Arnold Sitompul, conservation director of World Wildlife Fund-Indonesia, who wasn’t involved in the paper, in a statement. “We need the social and political will to move things forward and establish additional populations.”

first all-female anti-poaching unit risking their lives to protect big cats, rhinos and elephants from men with guns

The REAL lionesses of Africa: Stunning ‘Black Mambas’ are first all-female anti-poaching unit risking their lives to protect big cats, rhinos and elephants from men with guns

  • WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
  • Black Mambas is all female, anti-poaching group working in Balule reserve
  • They free animals from snares and radio in poachers’ locations to rangers
  • Women’s lives are constantly at risk from poachers, animals they protect
  • Poaching in Balule reduced by 75 per cent since Mambas formed in 2013 

They are in fact the Black Mambas, an all female anti-poaching unit risking their own lives to protect the endangered animals being hunted for their horns, fur and meat. 

On their daily patrols around the Balule reserve, near Kruger National Park, they face the very real prospect of being gunned down by poachers or mauled to death by the animals they swore to protect.

Despite the dangers, and against the odds, the Mambas are winning the battle against poaching. Their presence alone has reduced poaching in Balule by 75 per cent and their methods could now be rolled out across the country.

Protectors: The all-female Black Mambas risk their lives to protect the endangered animals being targetted by poachers in the South African bush

Protectors: The all-female Black Mambas risk their lives to protect the endangered animals being targetted by poachers in the South African bush

 Winning: The Mambas (pictured), many of whom are mothers and wives, have reduced poaching in the Balule reserve, near Kruger National Park, by 75 per cent

 Winning: The Mambas (pictured), many of whom are mothers and wives, have reduced poaching in the Balule reserve, near Kruger National Park, by 75 per cent

Endangered: The Mambas' most important job is to protect the rhinos being targetted by poachers for their horns, which sell for more than cocaine on the black market (pictured, Black Mamba helping victims of rhino poaching at the Rhino Revolution Rehabilitation Centre)

Endangered: The Mambas’ most important job is to protect the rhinos being targetted by poachers for their horns, which sell for more than cocaine on the black market (pictured, Black Mamba helping victims of rhino poaching at the Rhino Revolution Rehabilitation Centre)

When Siphiwe Sithole told her parents she wanted to be a Black Mamba, they feared she would be eaten by a lion.

They were right to worry. Since joining in 2014, she has had two very close encounters with the King of the Jungle.

Siphiwe, 31, said: ‘The first time was when I first started working as a Mamba. I ran from it [the lion], which was wrong. You should never run from a lion!

‘I was put on a special course which taught me how to deal with wild animals, should I ever meet them. I then met some lions for a second time and this time I knew how to behave.’

The women’s backgrounds vary, but for some who come from poor families and villages, joining the Mambas is their only chance at a well paying job. Some even become the bread winners in the family.

Day-to-day duties of the 26 strong Mamba team include freeing animals trapped by barb wire snares, and patrolling the 400 square km Balule reserve looking for the slain carcasses of endangered rhinos.

Poachers killed at least 1,215 rhinos in 2014 – up from just 13 in 2007. It was this alarming trend that inspired Siphiwe to take action.  

Responsibility: Every morning at 5am, the Mambas (pictured) begin their 12 mile long patrol of the Balule reserve to look for poachers and help the animals trapped in their snaresResponsibility: Every morning at 5am, the Mambas (pictured) begin their 12 mile long patrol of the Balule reserve to look for poachers and help the animals trapped in their snares

Patrol: On their daily treks in Balule reserve, they risk being gunned down by poachers or mauled by the animals they swore to protect

Opportunity: For many women from poor families and villages, joining the Black Mambas is their only chance at getting a well paying job

Opportunity: For many women from poor families and villages, joining the Black Mambas is their only chance at getting a well paying job

Opportunity: For many women from poor families and villages, joining the Black Mambas is their only chance at getting a well paying job

Unarmed: The Mambas, swathed in green military fatigues, look more like soldiers than they do conservationists but they do not carry guns

Unarmed: The Mambas, swathed in green military fatigues, look more like soldiers than they do conservationists but they do not carry guns

Progress: After joining the Mambas, some women even become the bread winners in their family and have to support their husbands 

Harrowing: Their patrols in the Balule reserve, near Kruger National Park, deter poachers who hunt rhinos (pictured) for their horns, which sell for more than cocaine on the black market

Harrowing: Their patrols in the Balule reserve, near Kruger National Park, deter poachers who hunt rhinos (pictured) for their horns, which sell for more than cocaine on the black market

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3458085/The-REAL-lionesses-Africa-Stunning-Black-Mambas-female-anti-poaching-unit-risking-lives-protect-big-cats-rhinos-elephants-men-guns.html#ixzz41UrC6uON
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What would it be like for humans to be treated like animals?

http://news360.com/article/291521649/#

What would it be like for humans to be treated like animals?

These sketches say it all. From an alligator walking the runway with a human bag, to a man-drawn carriage pulling horses — prepare to question your own choices.

To believe that one race holds supremacy over all other living beings is to live in an illusion, to be infatuated with a lie and promise of power, and to contribute to a destructive and cruel cycle which exploits and harms other sentient, innocent creatures every day.

Yet this is exactly what is happening all around the world. Not only are women treated as less than equals in every profession (making up 40% of the workforce, yet hold only 1% of the world’s profits), but animals in every country and region are considered to be less intelligent, and in effect, less worthy of having rights.

Just because animals do not communicate in the same way human beings do does not make them any less important – or essential – to the ecosystem and workings of the world.

To shed light on the way animals are treated and cause viewers to contemplate their own actions, these creative – and somewhat disturbing – cartoons have been compiled into a collection for YOU to ponder what it would be like if animals treated humans the same way they are presently being treated.

AnimalTreatment

AnimalTreatment2

AnimalTreatment

What are your thoughts? Comment below. And if you support the general message being conveyed through the cartoons, please share with others so they, too, may benefit from the thought-provoking sketches as well.

Words by Amanda Froelich
This post originally appeared on TrueActivist.com.
Source: Higher Perspective

Also see: Will you see a South African rhino on your next trip to South Africa?

Also see: Is dehorning South African rhinos really the solution?

Black Rhino Officially Extinct

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http://www.11alive.com/news/article/312002/40/Western-black-rhino-officially-declared-extinct

LONDON (CNN) — Africa’s western black rhino is now officially extinct according the latest review of animals and plants by the world’s largest conservation network.

The subspecies of the black rhino — which is classified as “critically endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species — was last seen in western Africa in 2006.

The IUCN warns that other rhinos could follow saying Africa’s northern white rhino is “teetering on the brink of extinction” while Asia’s Javan rhino is “making its last stand” due to continued poaching and lack of conservation.

“In the case of the western black rhino and the northern white rhino the situation could have had very different results if the suggested conservation measures had been implemented,” Simon Stuart, chair of the IUCN species survival commission said in a statement.

“These measures must be strengthened now, specifically managing habitats in order to improve performance, preventing other rhinos from fading into extinction,” Stuart added.

The IUCN points to conservation efforts which have paid off for the southern white rhino subspecies which have seen populations rise from less than 100 at the end of the 19th century to an estimated wild population of 20,000 today.

Another success can be seen with the Przewalski’s Horse which was listed as “extinct in the wild” in 1996 but now, thanks to a captive breeding program, has an estimated population of 300.

The latest update to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species reviews more than 60,000 species, concluding that 25% of mammals on the list are at risk of extinction.

Many plants are also under threat, say the IUCN.

Populations of Chinese fir, a conifer which was once widespread throughout China and Vietnam, is being threatened by the expansion of intensive agriculture according to the IUCN.

A type of yew tree (taxus contorta) found in Asia which is used to produce Taxol (a chemotherapy drug) has been reclassified from “vulnerable” to “endangered” on the IUCN Red List, as has the Coco de Mer — a palm tree found in the Seychelles islands — which is at risk from fires and illegal harvesting of its kernels.

Recent studies of 79 tropical plants in the Indian Ocean archipelago revealed that more than three quarters of them were at risk of extinction.

In the oceans, the IUCN reports that five out of eight tuna species are now “threatened” or “near threatened,” while 26 recently-discovered amphibians have been added to the Red List including the “blessed poison frog” (classified as vulnerable) while the “summers’ poison frog” is endangered.

“This update offers both good and bad news on the status of many species around the world,” Jane Smart, director of IUCN’s global species program said in a statement.

“We have the knowledge that conservation works if executed in a timely manner, yet, without strong political will in combination with targeted efforts and resources, the wonders of nature and the services it provides can be lost forever.”

US Government Approves Dallas Safari Club’s Rhino Import Permit for Trophy Hunter Corey Knowlton — Petition

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US Government approves Dallas club’s rhino import permit

DALLAS (AP) — The US government will allow a Texas man to import the trophy of an endangered black rhinoceros should he kill one in Africa as part of a conservation fundraiser.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service said Thursday that importing a carcass from Namibia meets criteria under the Endangered Species Act of benefiting conservation.

Corey Knowlton bid $350,000 last year in a Dallas Safari Club auction billed as a fundraising effort to save the black rhino.

In a letter to the agency in December, the club’s executive director, Ben Carter, said the money raised from such auctions is “critical to supporting the Namibian government in their efforts to stem the tide of commercial killing of these animals.”

Since publishing the initial request in November, the US Fish and Wildlife Service received more than 15,000 comments, as well as petitions with about 152,000 signatures demanding that it be denied. PETA said Thursday that it will file a lawsuit.

The hunt was postponed and Knowlton’s money kept in escrow while the agency deliberated over the permit application.

Dallas Safari Club spokeswoman Jay Ann Cox could not immediately confirm Thursday whether a date has been set for the hunt.

The agency also is allowing Michael Luzich, a Las Vegas investment manager, to import his black rhino trophy. Namibia directly sold him a hunting permit.

Luzich has received far less scrutiny than Knowlton, who said last year he hired full-time security because he’d received death threats once his name became public knowledge.

Full story at http://fwbusinesspress.com/fwbp/article/1/9432/Breaking-News/US-government-approves-Dallas-clubs-rhino-import-permit-.aspx

                           ________________________________

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/804/950/521/?cid=FB_TAF

The federal government in the US has confirmed that permission has been granted to Trophy hunter Corey Knowlton

Once again we are shown proof that money is power in the United States of America, with permission being granted to Trophy hunter Corey Knowlton to import the trophy of critically endangered black Rhino from Namibia for which he paid 350,000 dollars. This must be stopped before precedent is made and all wealthy people become entitled to be above international law.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/804/950/521/?cid=FB_TAF

I Swear Because I Care so Much

Cut the crap about a harmless little F-word, there’s animals fucking dying out there.

Yesterday I posted a picture someone put together of multiple murderers and their “trophy” giraffe kills. I’d thought about titling the post, “Who the Hell Hunts10557040_1609109249312078_7951148989311848842_o Giraffes for Sport and How You Can Stop Them?” But the issue made me so angry that I went with my gut reaction and titled it, “Who the Fuck Hunts Giraffes for Sport and How You Can Stop Them?” But, for that I’ve been chastised across the social media by certain readers.

Apologies to anyone reading this that’s a young kid or in some other way sheltered enough to think a word is somehow more offensive than a photo of dozens of dead giraffes and the fuckers who shot them down. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t normally go around spewing obscenities, but when some asshole is out murdering animals as harmless and miraculous as a giraffe I start to get a bit pissed off. You could say my tact goes out the fuckin’ window.

Forgive me if I can’t stay civil when addressing some shithead serial-killer-sport-hunter who wants to add a lion, rhino or giraffe to his trophy collection.

Instead of being so sensitive to swear words, perhaps some of you should save your comments for the real criminals—the murdering mother-fuckers who kill sentient beings for sport.

___________________________________________________

Please sign and share these petitions.

Rhinoceros in SA need your help before their extinction
http://www.change.org/petitions/rhinoceros-in-south-africa-need-your-help-before-their-extinction#shar

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Safari Club–Center of Rhino Hunting Controversy–To Auction Off More Rare Animal Hunts

http://theirturn.net/rare-animal-hunt-auction/

The 6,000 member Dallas Safari Club will auction off rare animals hunts this weekend during the banquet at its annual convention, which is a “showcase of hunting, sporting and outdoor adventure,” according to the Club’s website. During the auction, “bidders of any age or gender” will have the chance to bid on “amazing items,” including “youth hunts in New Zealand and Texas, a challenging Mid-Asian ibex hunt in Russia, and a bongo hunt in Cameroon.”

One of dozens of animal hunts at Dallas Safari Club Auction

The 2014 convention made international headlines when one attendee, Corey Knowlton, paid $350,000 to shoot an endangered black rhino in Namibia. Mr. Knowlton, who has purportedly received death threats, tells critics that he is motivated by “conservation.” Specifically, he claims that his substantial contribution will be allocated to rhino conservation efforts and that killing the rhino in question would actually benefit other rhinos in the area who he has been attacking.

But, if conservation is really Mr. Knowlton’s motivation, then why doesn’t he allocate a small part of his winning bid to relocate him?  And, if he’s concerned that the menacing rhino is harming the others, then why hasn’t he  shot him down hasn’t he done it in the 12 months since he won the bid?  Could it be because the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has not yet issued a permit to import the rhino’s body and that Mr. Knowlton has no intention of returning from Africa without his “trophy.”

In an interview with Jane Velez-Mitchell on JaneUnchained.com, Christopher Gervais, the director of the Wildlife Conservation Film Festival & Biodiversity Conference, says that killing animals is not the way to preserve them: “You do not hunt a vulnerable species in the name of conservation. Other organizations are conserving without hunting and killing.” Conservation funds. he says, can be raised through photography safaris during which animals are shot with cameras instead of guns.

Shooting rhinos with cameras

Your Turn

Please sign the petition to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to deny a permit that would allow 2014 Dallas Safari Club auction winner Corey Knowlton to import a black rhinoceros trophy from Namibia.

More Poachers Shot Dead

Yet another Rhino bludgeoned for fake medicine.
One of two poachers shot dead. 

Poachers are asked to refrain breaching the parks borders and cease poaching now. International Animal Rescue Foundation India and Africa are actively supporting forest guards in the region. This support is not for public disclosure for security reasons. Why risk you're life for an animal part that doesn't hold any medicinal properties at all?

More poachers shot dead;

Two poachers were killed in an encounter with forest guards in the Bagori Range area of Assam’s Kaziranga National Park on Thursday.

According to officials, five to six poachers had entered the park in order to carry out rhino poaching. Except the two who were killed, all others escaped during the encounter. On Wednesday, a female Rhino was killed by poachers at the park located in Assam’s Sonitpur district. An Assam Home Guard, part of the force that guards rhinos at National Parks, was also killed by the poachers.

Poachers have killed and de-horned nearly 200 rhinos in Assam over the past 13 years; in 2014, 20 rhinos were killed. A few years ago, the Assam government set up a special task force to guard rhinos. Last year, there was a proposal to use drones for surveillance at the Kaziranga National Park, but nothing has been done yet in this regard.

In 2014 , the Assam forest department killed 22 poachers in the state. Assam is home to the world’s largest population of one-horned rhinos, an endangered species.

Picture – One of two Rhino poachers this year captured by forest guards.

2014 Has Already Set A Record For Rhino Poaching

https://www.thedodo.com/rhino-poaching-south-africa-831606895.html

By Melissa Cronin

Texas hunting club may cancel endangered rhino hunt

“I’m a hunter,” Knowlton told WFAA. “I want to experience a black rhino. I want to be intimately involved with a black rhino.”

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/texas-hunting-club-may-cancel-endangered-rhino-hunt/

DALLAS – A Texas hunting club that auctioned off a permit to shoot an endangered black rhinoceros in Africa said it will cancel the hunt if a federal agency denies the winning bidder’s request to bring the dead animal back to the U.S. as a trophy.

Corey Knowlton bid $350,000 at a January auction that the Dallas Safari Club billed as a fundraising effort to save the endangered species. Last spring, he applied for a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that would enable him to import the rhino’s body following the hunt in Namibia. But he’s still waiting to hear back.

The agency is applying extra scrutiny to Knowlton’s request because of the rise in poaching, said spokesman Gavin Shire.

If the permit is denied, the safari club plans to refund Knowlton’s money that was pledged to a rhino conservation fund in the southwestern African country.

“Most people that have an animal mounted, it’s their memory of their experience,” said Ben Carter, the safari club’s executive director. “It’s not always, ‘Look at what I’ve shot.’ When they look at it, they remember everything. That’s what he bid the money on, that opportunity.”

The wildlife agency began taking public comment on the permit application this month and has already heard from many of the groups that fervently opposed the auction.

The safari club has defended the planned hunt, noting that auction proceeds would go to a trust fund administered by the Namibian government to help boost the black rhino population.

The wildlife service expects to make a decision after the public comment period ends Dec. 8, taking into account the state of the herd in Namibia, where 1,800 of the world’s 4,880 black rhinos live. The agency also is examining exactly how the auction funds would be administered.

Last year, the service granted a permit to import a sport-hunted black rhino taken in Namibia in 2009, but increased poaching since then may impact whether any more are approved, said Shire.

Each year, the Namibian government issues five black rhino hunting permits that fund efforts to protect the species. The program includes habitat improvement, hiring game scouts to monitor the rhinos, and removing the animals’ horns to reduce their appeal to poachers.

“The aim is to re-invest these financial resources back to conservation, protected area management and rural community development,” said Kenneth Uiseb, Namibia’s director of wildlife monitoring and research.

But opponents of the auction say the programs are not worthwhile if they entail the killing of any endangered animal.

“Kill it to save it is not only cruel, it’s not conservation,” said Jeff Flocken, the North American regional director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare. “If black rhinos and other dwindling species are to have a future, people must be encouraged to value animals for their inherent worth alive, not their price tag when they are dead.”

The safari club has said the hunt will involve one of five black rhinos selected by a committee and approved by the Namibian government. The five are to be older males that can’t reproduce.

Namibia sold another hunting permit for $200,000 directly to Michael Luzich, a Las Vegas investment manager who is also seeking a permit to bring the trophy into the U.S., according to Shire.

But Luzich has received far less scrutiny than Knowlton, who said in January he hired full-time security because he received death threats after his name was leaked on the Internet.

Knowlton lives in Royse City, about 30 miles from Dallas, and leads international hunting trips for a Virginia-based company, The Hunting Consortium. He has killed more than 120 species, including the so-called big five in Africa – a lion, a leopard, an elephant, a Cape buffalo and a rhinoceros, according to the company’s website.

He did not return messages left by The Associated Press for this story, but told Dallas television station WFAA in January that he believed the hunt would be managed well.

“I’m a hunter,” Knowlton told WFAA. “I want to experience a black rhino. I want to be intimately involved with a black rhino.”