Life & Travels Afloat in our Moody


eliesConservation – Right or Wrong?

There were some very thought-provoking conversations with our ranger at the safari lodge. Most of us may have contributed to wildlife charities at some time. However the very sentimentality that forms the core of any of the usual appeals can lead to unintended consequences. Elephants are just such a case.
No-one likes to think of culling animals, especially intelligent and long-lived ones, and we will protest against such cull. However the issues may not be so straight forward. On the reserve we visited, the 73,000 hectares would normally support say 60 elephants in a naturally balanced environment. They live for about 65 years, we were told, and regularly breed. In truth, they are a very destructive force in the environment, trampling bushes and pushing down trees, hence the low density ratio for balance.
There are actually around 1,000 elephants on the reserve, causing a gradual but relentless degradation of the environment. This puts pressure on other species, and leads to an inevitable decline in numbers and species. The situation at other reserves is sometimes much worse.
So would you cull?

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