Benay New York

Poaching: a Serious Issue

In the year 2012, 668 rhinos were poached in South Africa, and in January 2013, that number increased to 946. No one is really paying attention to these issues because they believe that it doesn’t affect us as humans or our environment, but it does.

Dear next President,

The illegal action of poaching is a huge problem that many animals face everyday. Poaching is an illegal crime of hunting animals for the use of their skin, teeth, bones or anything that could be used in a useful way towards human kind. This crime happens all around the world, the killing of these animals endangered or not is slowly killing them off making their past and future legacies extinct. Poachers/hunters usually hunt elephants; for example the African Elephant is being poached for their ivory in their trunks. Tigers are being killed for their skins just to be walked on as a rug. While some other animals are just being killed to be placed on a person’s wall and to be called art. The wildlife and plant trade is estimated to be worth: $70-213 billion a year. Some organizations have taken it upon themselves to try and save these animals from poachers meaning to harm them. The International Anti-Poaching Foundation (IAPF) is a non-profit organization that takes time to come up with effective ways to stop poaching. The group was founded in 2009; it also engages with the community and does research to develop more technology to help animal biodiversity.

Another organization is the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) that was founded in 1961 this organization was made in order to finding solutions to ending wildlife crimes. The world wildlife fund works to try and influence government policies also to encourage and educate people to try and make decisions that would not only affect wildlife but also help them. One unknown fact that many people need to know is that after China, the United States is the second largest importer of illegal wildlife.

95% of rhino poaching takes place in South Africa and Zimbabwe many people believe that rhino horns can be used as a medicine but not many believe that. Since the year 2008 rhino poaching has increased rapidly; in 2011 a number of 448 rhinos were killed. In the year of 2012, 668 rhinos were poached in South Africa, and in January 2013, that number increased to 946. No one is really paying attention to these issues because they believe that it doesn’t affect us as humans or our environment when it does. The hunting of animals will lead them to become endangered then they would become extinct which would in time throw off the balance of the food chain. No one notices how also killing these animals will disrupt the hibernation and migration. Many people do this because of the “chase”, the kill for fun, and sometimes for the adrenaline. Those type of people can kill an animal without feeling a bit of remorse towards their kill because to them that animal is just one step closer to the money they would gain.

The poaching of animals can have a terrible impact on human health. On the date November 16,2002 there was an outbreak known as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). This outbreak began in Guangdong province of China, which borders Hong Kong.There was 806 infections and also 34 deaths reported; all other reportings before that were claimed to be false.This sickness was traced back to human consumption and contact of the poached meat that was available on the black wildlife market. People became sick eating those poached animals. Animals shouldn’t be treated as targets for easy money or a next meal, humans aren’t being hunted so why should animals be?

On July 1, 2015 Cecil the Lion, who was a major attraction in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, was killed. He was wounded with an arrow by a recreational big-game hunter Walter Palmer. 40 hours after being wounded he was then shot. He died at the age of 13. Due to the killing of this animal Zimbabwe suffered a major loss, just like many people who love animals will. This is an example of how even if a certain animal is put on a high level that they can still be hunted no matter what. That level on which they are put upon can also place a more bigger target on their backs because of how important they are and how much money they would get for that kill.

Also in Zimbabwe poachers killed a total of 80 elephants by poisoning them with cyanide a very toxic industrial chemical. There were multiple killings happening in many of Zimbabwe national parks which had to do with cyanide. Elephant poaching in Zimbabwe has began to grow more rapidly and cyanide is being most commonly used because it’s cheap and quiet; it is being put in watering holes and laced onto salt licks. Zimbabwe was said to have 83,000 elephants but now according to a report in 2014 had said that there numbers have dropped from 19,000 in 2001 to 13,000, a 40 percent drop.Some of the poachings token place in Zimbabwe’s national parks were said to be inside jobs done by members who worked there.

The poaching issues isn’t something that should be taken lightly it’s a major problem that needs to be stopped right away. Not only for the sake of animals health but ours as people too.



Works Cited:

Troy High School

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