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When We Kill Animals, We Kill Ourselves


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The world’s biodiversity is declining at an alarming rate. Population sizes of vertebrate species, as measured by the Living Planet Index (LPI), have more than halved in little more than 40 years.

According to data from the World Wildlife Fund, if current trends continue, the decline in populations could reach two-thirds by 2020, not sure how many species by then will disappear all together. The freshwater system is on an 81 percent decline, terrestrial animals by 38 percent, and salt water marine life has fallen 36 percent. And all these numbers continue to fall! 

The range of the African Wild Dog is a spec compared to what it was a decade ago

The range of the African Wild Dog is a spec compared to what it was a decade ago

Why this matters:

  • It’s been proven over and over again that all species impact other species (an we’re naive to believe that doesn’t include our own species).
  • Many of our pharmaceuticals are derived from plants of the rain forest and elsewhere. As animal species are diminished, the places where they live won’t be the same, and plant species will die out as well – that’s not to mention deforestization, which is a primary reason many animals will be gone in the first place. A cure for MS or a type of cancer could easily go undiscovered.
  • Your children, grand children or great grandchildren will never be able to see such species as chimpanzees or black rhinoceros in the wild, and some species won’t exists in zoos either. They will be gone, except records of them in history books.

    The micronesian kingfisher is one of an increasing number of species only found in zoos

    The micronesian kingfisher is one of an increasing number of species only found in zoos

What could possibly the benefit of hunting big game be? Some argue, ‘this is a natural cycle,’ and that is not the case. We (humans) are responsible for much of the decline. One example is through needless poaching, needless because such activity benefits know one except individual human ego or the mistaken notion of value to human health. One example is the benefit of a rhinoceros horn in China. By the way, a rhino is composed of keratin, just as our finger nails are. Cut your nails, keep the clippings, and sell them to China.

Pollution affects wildlife, but impacts us as well. For example, people still die as a result of tainted water in many places around the globe, and air pollution causes and contributes to various medical issues for people in China, for example.

Pollution is killing the Amazon's pink river dolphin

Pollution and habitat loss is killing the Amazon’s pink river dolphin, and other fresh water dolphin species

If you don’t believe that climate change is real, visit Australia or New Zealand, where the affects have been seen for well over a decade in the human population. Or ask polar bears – now starving to death – because even in the dead of winter their ice flows, which they once hunted on, no longer exists. Polar bears now commonly die early of starvation.

Ged Caddick of Ecotours.com is helping to save wildlife

Ged Caddick of Ecotours.com is helping to save wildlife

I spoke with Ged Caddick of Ecotours.com about exotic trips you can take to see rare and endangered animals, and a part of the cost of the trip supports saving local wildlife in places like Rwanda, Borneo and in the Amazon.

If we kill too many animals, we will kill our planet. We have no where else to go do we?

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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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