optig

Hope for Kenya Elephants

24 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/photography/proof/2017/05/reteti-orphan-elephants-vitale/

 

@@douglaswise please note that the elephants are not the destroyers of the environment they are in fact the engineers. It is also a myth that they destroy the ecosystem for other species of animals. An excess of elephants is nothing more than an excuse for culling and hunting, I also learned that the Samburu today greatly respect he elephants and say that if one poaches an elephant then his family will return to kill you. I personally believe that this is true because of complex behavior of elephant families and their incredible ability to pass on memories from generation to generation.

Edited by optig
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@optig: Sorry I'm so stupid. Clearly, you know best. An excess of elephants can never damage habitat and it is only blood lust that makes me claim they can. All relevant scientific evidence can clearly be dismissed now that you have spoken on the subject. It is surprising that your new-found wisdom comes from a newspaper article, particularly as you have currently been rubbishing another in a different Safaritalk post. Do they have to conform to your emotional prejudices before they can be deemed correct?

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@@optig I've moved this topic, please post in the correct subforum. General Africa Talk is not for wildlife/conservation matters.

 

Thanks, Matt

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Overpopulation of any herbivore leads to overgrazing and habitat damage and elephants are no exception.

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Overpopulation of any herbivore leads to overgrazing and habitat damage and elephants are no exception.

 

The only overpopulation that needs to be seriously concerned about is that of the pest species..The human race.

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@@RichB

 

It is true that our species has greater impacts (often negative) on ecosystems than any other. However, in conservation terms, the effects of elephants in Hwange are not dissimilar to those of pastoralists in Laikipia. One needs to be concerned about both.

 

I'm not sure what you were hoping to convey with your post. Are you advocating pest control? If so, whom would you like to start on? Perhaps you were merely indulging in totally unproductive virtue signalling.

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http://www.travelweek.ca/news/big-business-trophy-hunting-vs-income-from-tourists-who-flock-to-see-wildlife/

 

@@douglaswise as this article points out culling is nothing more than the indiscriminate killing of elephants.Please note the words of Prince Mupazviriho, permanent secretary in Zimbabwe's ministry environment water and climate said the hunting of a collared lion was an isolated accident.

Please consider Prince Mupazviriho words that it is not scientific.Furthermore more humane culling methods call for the destruction of the entire herd including the baby elephants.Since raw ivory tusks can no longer be sold according to CITES how could culling possibly benefit conservation?

 

I've heard many times before that when elephants pull down trees the trees are still alive because their roots and branches are still alive. Thus the environment is being reborn. Elephants also carry the seeds with them in their dung when they migrate.

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Who would know that this thread was meant to be about the Samburu establishing an elephant orphanage?

 

Instead @@optig you seem to be deliberately using it to invite and foster yet another thread revolving around culling hunting etc.

 

I haven't even bothered to read the latest link in #7

 

Will someone wake me up if this thread actually gets back to the Samburu and their orphanage?!

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Which trees? Different species respond differently to elephant damage (eg. acacia and mopane). Elephants are mixed feeders. Overgrazing tends to destroy perennial grasses, leaving less nutritious annuals. When the nutritional potential of grazing drops, elephants make greater use of browse and damage even the more tolerant species of trees. An overpopulation of elephants has adverse impacts not only on vegetation, but on other species of mammalian wildlife. Elephant populations will self-regulate, but only at levels that are unsustainable. Please read the scientific literature rather than relying on out-of-context quotes by the likes of Prince Mupazviriho.

 

The original aim of CITES - the establishment of sustainable trade in wildlife products - has been subverted by protectionist NGOs in the developed world (they can't vote, but they do have massive influence on decisions). The Botswana ban on hunting was, I believe, a decision made by the president in response to threats of potential boycotts by photo-tourists. The decision has apparently appalled most wildlife professionals and has directly led to an upsurge in poaching.

 

IMO, sustainable trade in ivory offers the best hope for African elephants, but only if (a big if) the proceeds go back into conservation efforts.

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@@douglaswise as I'm sure that you know the ivory trade has never been sustainable. Any legal sale of ivory will only cause more poaching. It has highly debatable that elephant overgrazing has a negative effect on other species. As I've seen in areas where elephant numbers return to solid numbers after poaching or overhunting has reducing them that leads to greater numbers of other herbivores and then more carnivorous wildlife.

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@optig:

 

How many savanna elephants would you like Africa to possess? There are currently approximately 400000. How would 800000 suit you? Since you don't accept that elephant density can be excessive, perhaps a doubling of current numbers wouldn't be enough for you. However, supposing it were and that your protectionist approach to conservation actually worked (for which there is scant evidence), you would need to cull 40000 a year to stabilise at this level - more than the number being currently poached. Thus, trade in ivory could be sustainable as it could make a very substantial contribution to the $350/sq km that I have read are necessary to protect wildlife areas from poaching. Certainly, in no other way are equivalent funds likely to be found for other than small areas of potential elephant habitat.

 

The real conservation tragedy is that some 60% of the extant elephant population is confined to territory that is being rapidly desertified while the residual percentage is scattered in suitable but insufficiently protected areas such that populations there are dwindling.

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Who would know that this thread was meant to be about the Samburu establishing an elephant orphanage?

 

Instead @@optig you seem to be deliberately using it to invite and foster yet another thread revolving around culling hunting etc.

 

I haven't even bothered to read the latest link in #7

 

Will someone wake me up if this thread actually gets back to the Samburu and their orphanage?!

 

 

I'd personally like to know more about this relatively new Elephant Orphanage. Perhaps another reason to visit the Samburu/Shaba area. This intent of this thread seems to be a bit of a grudge match and not at all about the merits of elephant orphanages or a serious discussion of the necessity of culling elephant populations to prevent (in my opinion), human/wildlife conflict that could result in human death/injury/crop damage and retaliation against elephants and other resident wildlife.

 

http://www.retetielephants.org/who-we-are/

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National Geographic seem to be so depressed about the tone of this thread that they killed hte page linked to. I am very interested in this as it is a bit unexpected. The supporters are like a "who's who" of northern kenya/ Kenyan elephant conservation though - everyone wanted their name on this one.

 

Reteti Elephant Orphanage has a blog - not very active but professionally done and it'll give you an idea of what they are up to and some pretty photos. It is not currently set up for visits I believe.

 

www.retetielephants.org/blog

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@@PT123 - Hooray and thanks for waking me up and getting things back on track.

 

There must have been a lot of work being quietly carried out in the background over a lengthy period with the Samburu communities and conservation bodies to get to the stage of setting up this elephant orphanage.

 

It will be interesting to follow its progress.

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@@douglaswise as you well know there are many areas where elephants have either been entirely eliminate or have been reduced to inconsequential numbers few to poaching, overhunting.and culling. So yes I do think that Africa could support double the number of elephants that it has now. Where do you propose selling the ivory from culled elephants

since it is currently banned by CITES?

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@@optig Are you really interested in the elephant orphanage that you have brought to our attention?

 

It is quite clear from some of the posts that others are so thank you for bringing it to the attention of ST members. But please desist from drifting way off topic and fighting a battle about culling, hunting, the ivory trade etc. There are plenty of other threads where this can be discussed.

 

 

@@Caracal @@pault @@PT123 is this group linked at all to Sheldrick or has it been independently set up but along similar lines?

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@@wilddog this elephant orphanage has absolutely nothing to do with Sheldrick. What they are trying to do, is unique is after the elephant has reached adulthood is to reintroduce it to the area where it was found so that it can be back with members of it's extended elephant family. When I was there in April there were only 12 orphans of whom only 2 were made orphaned due to poaching.

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@@optig I did not realise that you had been there in April. Thanks for the additional information.

 

Do you know where the other 10 elephants had come from?

 

Re introducing to their extended family will no doubt be a challenge..... I wish them well.

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To be honest, I had not appreciated that this thread was intended to be about yet another elephant orphanage. I had not read @@optig's link - only the text that he addressed to me which made no mention of a sanctuary and appeared to be a response to a comment I had made on the "Zimbabwe Presidential Elephant Herd" thread. I shall desist from further comment on the current thread despite my frustration with the constant repetition of @@optig's constantly repeated, non-evidence-based opinions.

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Thank you @@douglaswise I can appreciate how you made that assumption. :)

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National Geographic seem to be so depressed about the tone of this thread that they killed hte page linked to. I am very interested in this as it is a bit unexpected. The supporters are like a "who's who" of northern kenya/ Kenyan elephant conservation though - everyone wanted their name on this one.

 

Reteti Elephant Orphanage has a blog - not very active but professionally done and it'll give you an idea of what they are up to and some pretty photos. It is not currently set up for visits I believe.

 

www.retetielephants.org/blog

 

The National Geographic page is back. Well done @wildog ... and all :D

 

I read that Sheldrick trained the keepers so they do have some involvement, although it's not their idea or project I believe.

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I was really impressed by the attitude of not only the keepers,but also the office staff who came to visit. They were all quite enthusiastic. They are also building a mansion at Reteti for special donors copying the example of Sheldrick. A new lodge will also open shortly.

 

As i mentioned of the other twelve lost their mothers there, only two were orphaned due to poaching, the others were due to natural causes.

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elephants are a factor in dynamic vegetation change between grassland and woodland

 

their wallowing is key in creating waterholes

 

trees pushed over makes the leaves available for other animals

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@@COSMIC RHINO that is just my point it's not a black and white scenario in that elephants destroy their inhabitat and cause it to to turn into desert. I've heard that elephants are the most destructive animals of their environment,and that they ruin it for other species. I'm sorry but that isn't what I've seen for myself in Chobe, Hwange and Gonorezhou National Parks where they are increasingly high populations of elephants. I haven't seen the environment worsen fro other herbivores.

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