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As we reported yesterday, biodiversity is declining at a precipitous rate, according to a new report by scientists from across the globe produced for the United Nations. In an effort to save one of the most iconic species on the planet — the African giraffe — the Fish and Wildlife Service at the Department of Interior is considering listing them on the nation’s endangered species list, which would mean restrictions on their importation into the United States and would also make available small amounts of federal funding for giraffe conservation efforts. As a case study of the greater problem, the giraffe’s plight is telling. Numerous U.S. environmental groups, including The Center for Biological Diversity, Natural Resources Defense Council, Humane Society of the United States/Humane Society International and International Fund for Animal Welfare, petitioned the Trump Administration for the listing, and it has taken two years for the Administration to near a decision, meanwhile giraffes grow closer to extinction.
How much could the US endangered species listing help? A good deal. According to the groups’ petition, U.S. trade in giraffes is significant — between 2006 and 2015, 39,516 giraffe specimens, including dead and live animals, as well as their parts or derivatives, were imported into the United States, including 21,402 bone carvings, 3,008 skin pieces, and 3,744 hunting trophies.
Why This Matters: Human activity is causing a biodiversity loss crisis of massive proportions — and we need to turn the tide because our very existence depends on it. The plight of the giraffe is tragic, but as a symbol of the overall problem, it can play an important role in raising public awareness. Not to mention, that we here in the U.S. are a big part of the problem by fueling trade in this beautiful animal. So listing the giraffe as an endangered species in the U.S. is both a significant symbolic gesture to educate the public and important to demonstrate the U.S. as being a responsible steward of the planet.
This tiny owl is one lucky fella! He was plucked from the branches of the Christmas tree in NYC’s Rockefeller Plaza by one of the workers putting it up. Dubbed Rockefeller, he is now being nursed back to health at the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center, and his caretakers are hoping to release him back into the […]
Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Commission and its Southwest Water Management Division caught a record 2,000 Burmese pythons in Florida’s Everglades in just the first eight months of 2020. The good news is those snakes are gone. The bad news is there are that many Burmese pythons in the Everglades. Check out the cool photos of […]
Normalcy will return to the White House in January — the First Family will again have pets! The Bidens have two dogs, Champ and Major, and now an Instagram account with 60,000 followers, and even their own hashtag #DOTUS. The Obamas had two dogs, Sunny and Bo, and the Bushes had two cats and a […]
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