It’s too easy to be overwhelmed with negativity.
Many will have read yesterday’s post about the slaughter of elephants by ivory poachers and felt, as I did, a feeling of despair in the pit of one’s soul. We seem to be living in such challenging times with so much madness about us. It’s incredibly easy to feel as if this is some sort of ‘end of times’ period.
Today’s post tells us that there is always hope.
Let’s remind ourselves that elephants are very intelligent animals. As I wrote last November in a post with the title of Smart Animals:
There was a fascinating article on the BBC news website a few weeks ago that went on to explain:
10 October 2013
Elephants ‘understand human gesture’
By Victoria GillScience reporter, BBC News
African elephants have demonstrated what appears to be an instinctive understanding of human gestures, according to UK scientists. In a series of tests, researcher Ann Smet, of the University of St Andrews, offered the animals a choice between two identical buckets, then pointed at the one containing a hidden treat.
From the first trial, the elephants chose the correct bucket.
The results are published in the journal Current Biology.
(The two video clips on the BBC website are really worth watching.)
A story published in the Daily Mail just a few days ago underlines the intelligence of elephants.
This adorable baby elephant had to be rescued by its mother’s huge trunk after it got stuck in the mud while taking a bath.
The youngster was enjoying a quiet dip in the water but became stranded when it struggled to pull itself out of the lake.
He had to be lifted to safety by its mother and her trusty trunk, which acted as a crane as she carried the three-month-old calf out of the water.
The rest of the story may be read here.
Also what needs to be highlighted are the organisations that are actively working on behalf of the elephants.
The Independent Newspaper have their own elephant campaign.
In 2011, more African elephants were killed than any other year in history. The figures for 2012 and 2013 are not yet known, but are likely to be even higher. At current rates, in twelve years, there will be none left.
It is a familiar cause, but it has never been more urgent. Poaching has turned industrial. Armed militia fly in helicopters over jungle clearings, machine gunning down entire herds. Their tusks are then sold to fund war and terrorism throughout the continent and the wider world. Ivory is still illegal, but as China booms, it is more popular than ever.
This campaign will raise money to support rangers on the ground to protect Kenya’s elephants from armed poachers, together with Space for Giants’ longer term work to create new wildlife sanctuaries where elephants will be safe, forever. More can be found about the charity at Space for Giants
The article above includes two videos. A shorter one that can be viewed on the paper’s campaign website. Then there is a longer, five-minute, video also on YouTube and included below.
Offering a donation to help is only a click away.
Then there is the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust helping animals in Africa. And, finally, the campaign over at Bloody Ivory where one can sign a petition and donate towards stopping elephant poaching.
Thus, like so many aspects of life, never give up trying to help those less fortunate.
Without hope there is nothing.