extremely rare Dodo skeleton that usually resides at Durrell Wildlife Park will
take centre stage in de Gruchy’s shop window from Tuesday 27th March, to
highlight the launch of the store’s £10,000 2012 charity challenge.
skeleton, one of only a handful left in the world, will be carefully lifted
into place, to kick-start a year’s programme of fundraising, staff and customer
engagement by the store to the benefit of Durrell. The Dodo will remain on
display until 16th April. It is 350 years since the last recorded sighting of
the Dodo; so securing this rare, original skeleton (believed to be one of only
four left in the world) is extremely exciting.
de Gruchy sets a challenge to raise £10,000 funds to support a local charity
and for 2012, Durrell has been selected by our staff,” explains Store Manager
John Marquis. “However, we are planning a lot more than just fundraising to
benefit this exceptional organisation. We have already started a programme of
staff talks and engagement, communication about the work of Durrell to our
loyal customers and have put in place plans to help raise awareness through our
shop floor. From Friday 30th March, we will be launching a dedicated area of
the store to sell Durrell merchandise, entry tickets and adoption packs, in a
bid to raise awareness of the Trust to the thousands of customers that visit de
Gruchy each week.”
coming months, de Gruchy will also be working with the Durrell team, passing on
commercial and retail expertise and advice in order for the Trust to maximise
its retail capabilities at the Trinity site.
we won’t compromise on our conservation projects, which put us under continued
financial pressure. It is with the support of organisations like de Gruchy and
the broader community that we continue to undertake our fieldwork and maintain
our wildlife park and training centre in Trinity. Giving our charity prime
position on the high street, using the Dodo to represent the challenges we face
daily, is a huge boost to Durrell. We can’t thank de Gruchy enough for this
opportunity,” says Durrell’s Honorary Director, Dr Lee Durrell.
Image and text from the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust
This Saturday at 8:30 p.m., millions of people around the world will flick off the lights and live in darkness for one hour, all in an effort to raise awareness of global warming. The annual Earth Hour event started in Sydney, Australia back in 2007. Since then, more than 120 countries have participated.
The cash-poor McGuinty government plans to downgrade individual at-risk species protection, according to its austerity budget unveiled Tuesday.
The proposal would mandate the Ministry of Natural Resources to place a “stronger focus on ecosystems than on individual species,” while shrinking the number of smaller field offices – and staff – across the province.
With the province reeling under a massive deficit projected to hit $16 billion this year, the Ministry cuts would save $11.2 million over the next three years, including $7.5 million in 2014-2015. The Ministry as a whole would see its expenses dwindle from $713 million to $687 million.
The Liberals call the cuts “consistent” with improvements in science and technology. Through a series of tweaks to environmental legislation, the Ministry would “shift away from a species-by-species approach” to conservation. The Liberals would amend the Endangered Species Act to take a “risk-based approach” to assessing imperiled species.
While the criteria that defines at-risk species would not change, and nothing stands to be delisted, it remains unclear which species, exactly, will be affected. Wildlife monitoring programs, for example, might be scaled back and the Ministry is prepared to tolerate the possibility of losing up-to-date data.
The plan falls in line with wider proposed cuts inside the Ministry. The province would take a big-picture approach to resources management, cutting away species- and site-specific conservation measures and “deliver its service on larger geographic scales.”
Tibetans belonging to locally founded environmental group, Tawu Environmental
Protection Association, were arrested by the Chinese officials last month. The
group organized protests against rampant mining, deforestation, and smuggling
of wildlife products in the region and in other cases, fined Chinese fishermen
for fishing in sacred rivers. 17 March http://www.chinamedia.com/news/2012/03/17/four-environmental-activists-arrested-in-tibet/
winter, Gyatso community in Gansu's Tibetan areas will have access to liquefied
petroleum gas (LPG) the third category of clean energy to be prevalent after
methane and solar energy. Earlier, methane gas was made available to nearly
30,000 households between 2006 and 2010 whereas in 2008, solar energy stoves
were made available for families and schools. 20 March http://eng.tibet.cn/2010home/news/201203/t20120321_1728280.html
Seventeen timber smugglers were apprehended in Morang District, east
Nepal, by the District Forest Office. In news, two people were arrested for
killing elephants using electricity in Bardia District, west Nepal and two musk
traders were nabbed by the security personal for
possessing 14 grams of musk pods. 16, 17, 21 March The Himalayan Times, Ujyalo 90 Network
Over the past few weeks, I have been fortunate enough to volunteer at the World Bird Sanctuary. This is a truly unique experience and gives me a greater appreciation for those who work with animals every day. As a junior volunteer, my duties involve mostly cleaning and food preparation, as well as interacting with the public. I have learned a great deal about the birds and other animals that call the sanctuary home. I can't wait to go back again. If you live near St. Louis, Missouri I strongly encourage you to give the Sanctuary a visit. By educating the public about birds and other animals and facilitating a breeding program, the World Bird Sanctuary does a world of good for biodiversity.
This South American bird is called the Andean Condor. It has the longest wingspan of any land bird. This species is primarily a scavenger, feeding on carrion. It prefers deer and cattle. One of the world's longest living birds, it has a lifespan of up to 100 years old in captivity. Classified as near threatened. Image of condor from the Denver Zoo by Mike Leveille
The Leading Girls Building Community Award was presented to Jessica Walsh Moreau by Ottawa Centre Member of the Provincial Parliament Yasir Naqvi. She has been involved in the Macoun Marsh Biodiversity Project since its beginning. Jessica was also a leader in the 2009 International Youth Symposium for Biodiversity and the formation of the International Youth Accord for Biodiversity that she co-presented in Nagoya, Japan for COP10.
Campaigns Director Julian Newman catches up with Ali Jambi – aka Tham Hai Lee, Jambi Lee, Jenggo, Hap Ali – who went from Indonesian timber smuggler to wealthy Singaporean businessman.
Let’s call him Ali Jambi, as that was his nom de guerre when EIA first came across his trail over a decade ago.
He was born in Jambi, Indonesia, in 1969. In 2000, EIA was investigating rampant illegal logging of valuable ramin timber in Indonesia. Ramin is found in peat swamp areas, and the hotspots for illegal logging were Central Kalimantan and Riau Province, Sumatra.
We began hearing rumours that one man – Ali Jambi – controlled the ramin smuggling trade, making a fortune by ferrying the stolen wood across the Melaka Straits to Malaysia and Singapore. Later in 2000, his name appeared on a list issued by the country’s Ministry of Forestry of the top 12 illegal bosses in Indonesia.
Presently the Toronto Zoo is promoting their beautiful Polar Bears. This Zoo is actually recognized as an Arctic Ambassador by Polar Bears International and they have a "Polar Bear Team" at the Zoo that consists of keepers and educators.
They just recently had a baby born and are about to wrap up their naming contest. Here are some interesting links:
The Toronto Greenbelt is a
broad band of permanently protected land which:
Protects against the loss
and fragmentation of the agricultural land base and supports agriculture
as the predominant land use;
Gives permanent protection
to the natural heritage and water resource systems that sustain ecological
and human health and that form the environmental framework around which
major urbanization in south-central Ontario will be organized; and
Provides for a diverse range
of economic and social activities associated with rural communities,
agriculture, tourism, recreation and resource uses.
This is one of the largest green belts of its kind.
like to inform you of a youth environmental challenge to engage young people in
helping to protect our planet’s natural heritage. The “Green Space Challenge”
encourages schools and community clubs to adopt local habitats and/or species
to promote community conservation. This is not a competition- it is a global
model known as the Macoun Marsh Biodiversity Project began in 2004 with several
Canadian schools working together to preserve an urban wetland. The
international success of this program has launched this challenge initiative.
We hope to develop many partnerships along the way!
networking program will be continually featured on our international blog at biodiversitymatters.org.
Walsh Moreau Biodiversity
Jessica Walsh Moreau presently attends
Grade12 at St-Francis Xavier Catholic High School in Ottawa, Canada. Winner of
the 2006 Volvo Adventure Award (Macoun Marsh Project) and the 2011 "Leading Girls Building Communities
Award". She was the Youth Coordinator for the 2009 Youth Symposium for
Biodiversity and attended COP10, in Nagoya Japan, presenting the 2010
International Youth Accord for Biodiversity.
Spring tree plantation began at Azakhel Botanical
Garden University of Peshawar and it will continue till the end of March.
Around 10,000 plants will be planted by students, faculty and support staff at
the garden. The garden is the biggest botanical garden in Pakistan which offers
recreation, research and conservation facility for endangered plant species at
The hill state of Himanchal Pradesh received 150
million tourists in 2011 although the growth rate declined for the second
successive year. Of the total, 146 millions were domestic tourists. In 2010,
132 million tourists visited the state. The growth rate in 2011 was 13.74
percent compared to 15.98 percent in 2010.
local administration in Gorkha District, Central Nepal has banned import of
poultry with the suspicion of bird flu as preliminary test was positive for the
virus. Similarly, Government has declared fourvillages
in Sunsari and Jhapa districts in Eastern Nepal as bird flu affected area and
decided to send immediaterelief to the affected villages and take
measures to curb its spread in the neighboring districts.
Bina Sunaha (18) from Kanchanpur
district, Western Nepal has become first female mahout (elephant handler) in
Nepal through free competition with other male aspirants for the job. Now she
has theresponsibility to take care of seven
elephants including four female and two male and one baby elephant.
Lack of local government support and apathy notwithstanding,
the farmers in Sankhuwasabha district, Eastern Nepal have started to earn good money
from selling of Broom Grass (Thysanolaena maxima, locallyknown as Amriso) after making it their main
crop. Currently, more than 50 local family of Mamling VDC earn up to NPR. 50,000
annually. Besides selling, farmers barter broom grass with rice in 1:2 ratio in
weight. Now, more than 10 VDC in this region have adapted broom grass
cultivation. Similarly, production of Junar fruit (sweet orange or Citrus sinensis) contributes 190 -290 million Rupees annually to
farmers of Sindhuli district, Central Nepal. Favourable weather has increased
Junar production by 25% this year. In Sindhuli, there are four pocket VDCs for
the production of ‘Junar’ and 40 VDCs are involved partially. In Morang
district, Eastern Nepal, Community Forest User Groups are promoting commercial
beekeeping to the farmers. This year, local people extracted 2,850 Kg of honey
from 45 hives. Market value of honey is NPR 450 per kg.
until 00.01 GMT on FRIDAY, MARCH 23, 2012
Governments urged to take responsibility for failure
of ‘legal’ trade LONDON: Legal ivory auctions must be stopped and China
stripped of its Approved Buyer status if the rising tide of elephant poaching
is to be curbed.
In a new briefing, Blood
Ivory: Exposing the myth of a regulated market, released today, the
London-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) is also calling on the UK
and other governments that supported the sale of stockpiled ivory to China and
Japan to accept responsibility for their decision and take proactive steps to
reverse the harm it has done to global elephant populations.
Director Mary Rice made the case for the UK and its EU partners to press for an immediate
independent review of China’s domestic ivory trade control, regulation and
implementation when she gave evidence yesterday (March 22) to
the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee’s hearing on Wildlife Crime.
trade in ivory was banned in 1989 but, following a brief respite, poaching and
ivory smuggling have steadily risen to the point that 2011 was declared the
worst year for elephants since the ban was put in place
EIA contends that a
major factor in this rise has been the introduction of one-off auctions of
stockpiled ivory to approved buyers, sanctioned by the Convention on the
International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
To date, two
auctions have taken place, in 1999 and 2008, with both Japan and, subsequently,
China granted Approved Buyer status by CITES; both countries have flourishing
domestic ivory markets which EIA argues are the key driving force behind the
global illegal ivory trade and the poaching that facilitates it.
When China was granted the status in July 2008–
purchasing 60 tonnes of stockpiled ivory the following November –it made broad
commitments to stamp out black market ivory via ‘rigorous’control systems and mechanisms.
Yet EIA’s most
recent undercover investigations in mainland China demonstrate that China is
blatantly failing to keep its promises; the evidence shows the trade in the
country is out of control, with up to 90 per cent of ivory available on the
‘legal’ market derived from illegal sources.
There is also
evidence that the Chinese Government has directly profiteered on the ivory it
bought at action – after paying an average of US$157 per kilo, the same ivory
was allegedly sold on to accredited traders for as much as US$1,500 per kilo.
“The decision to
allow CITES-sanctioned ivory auctions and a limited ‘legal’ trade has been an
unmitigated disaster for vulnerable elephant populations,” said Rice.
“The vast majority
of seizures of smuggled ivory are destined for China, the black market there is
flourishing, and the Government’s profiteering has allowed highly organised
criminal syndicates to cash in by supplying poached ivory to undercut the
artificially inflated prices of the ‘legal’ supply, which further provides the
perfect cover under which to launder illegal ivory.
“The slaughter of
hundreds of elephants in Cameroon this year is only the most recent indicator
of the real cost of this failed policy.
“The UK Government,
and all other governments which supported China’s bid to become an Approved
Buyer, must shoulder the responsibility for that misguided decision and
introduce clear polices to firmly oppose all future proposed stockpile auctions
and to push for China’s Approved Buyer status to be immediately revoked,
followed by a thorough review of those holding the status.”
meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to CITES will be held in
Thailand in March 2013, when the ivory trade will once more be on the agenda.
there are over seven billion people to feed on our planet. Great advances in
have been achieved over the past three decades to feed the world’s population.
the global famine widely predicted in the 1960s and 1970s was successfully
avoided due to the
so-called “green revolution”, this progress came at significant environmental
costs. Losses of natural
areas, pollution of waterways, and the depletion of freshwater resources have
impacts on ecosystems and biodiversity.
there remain far too many people without sufficient food or even access to food
of the necessary
nutritional value. Most estimates suggest that a 70 per cent increase in food
be required in order to feed what is expected to be a global population of nine
billion people by
2050. This is a significant challenge: limited opportunities exist for
expanding the area of land under
cultivation without compromising other land uses, and agriculture is currently
on external inputs and over-reliant on fossil fuels. But most importantly,
is now regarded as the key constraint to further gains in agricultural output.
While we require
only about two to four litres of water a day to drink, it takes between 2,000 and
of water to produce one person’s daily food.
already accounts for 70 per cent of water use and there is increasing
competition with other
uses, particularly for industry and the rapidly expanding urban populations.
conclude that globally we are already reaching the limit of sustainable water
use and that
this limit has already been exceeded in many areas, as witnessed by widespread
depletion of river
flows, continuing loss of wetlands, desertification and groundwater depletion
on continental scales.
Food security for future generations will now depend on building a successful
the sustainable management of water.
previous “green revolution” cannot be repeated in order to meet the challenge
of achieving future
food security. However, success is achievable by shifting the focus from simply intensification
to sustainable intensification. Central to this will be water security
to underpin food
security. Biodiversity plays the central role in this. Genetic diversity held
within existing farming
systems and in nature is a key resource required to enable us to find the
improved crop and
livestock varieties needed in order to improve water-use efficiency.
is also important through its role in supporting ecosystem functions, and the
benefits they deliver. With regard to water, these are significant: the
quantity of water available
at any time and place, and its quality, is greatly influenced by ecosystems.
Rainfall is influenced
by plant transpiration on regional scales. Forest vegetation maintains soil
regulating erosion. Soil biodiversity plays the key role in enabling water to
penetrate soil and
be stored there, facilitating groundwater recharge, as well as nutrient
cycling, to support sustainable
crop production. Conservation agriculture is an approach that harnesses these
biodiversity by reducing soil disturbance and chemical application, which
maintains land cover and
reduces water use, while delivering significant yet sustainable increases in
production and farm
profitability. The International Initiative on Soil Biodiversity under the
Convention on Biological
Diversity is playing a key role in further supporting such approaches. Farming
is already a risky business, particularly regarding water. Climate change is
risks and will impact ecosystems, and therefore farming, largely through
availability. We therefore need to respond by managing our ecosystems better so
that they can
support improved water security for food production in the face of increasing
scarcity of water
and extremes in its availability. Our policies will need to recognize the
important role of natural
storage of water provided by healthy ecosystems. Water balances in soils,
wetlands and groundwater,
and their inter-relationships with surface water flows provided by wetlands and land
cover such as forests are critical components of the water cycle. Better use of
widely regarded as having a significant role to play in increasing production
essentially involves better use of soil biodiversity to sustain water
availability for crops.
Ecosystems provide “natural water infrastructure” which needs to be considered
and as complementary to, physical water infrastructure such as dams and other impoundments
and irrigation approaches.
approaches lie at the heart of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020,
and it’s Aichi Biodiversity
Targets, adopted at the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention
on Biological Diversity, held in Nagoya, Japan, in October 2010. We have
the dialogue of “trade-offs” between biodiversity, water and food production to
that there are mutually supporting objectives at play, with significant win-win opportunities.
Biodiversity is increasingly being viewed as a solution to problems. With full recognition
of this, and with enhanced implementation of the Strategic Plan, backed by
will, we can realize the goal of achieving a food- and water-secure world by
these actions, we can make our second farming revolution truly green.
The International Training Centre is situated at Durrell wildlife park
(formerly known as Jersey Zoo) in Jersey, headquarters to Durrell
Wildlife Conservation. Durrell wildlife park is a world renowned
conservation park containing over 130 species including some of the most
threatened birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles in the world.
Noyers was purchased in 1979 with the express intention of developing a
residential programme of endangered species recovery training. Since
that time we have trained more than 2800 conservationists from 128
countries in how to save species from extinction.
our courses spend time in the conservation park learning first hand from
Durrell staff about the husbandry techniques, veterinary care and
welfare of our exotic collection. Most importantly you will learn how
ex-situ management of endangered species can support their recovery in
We run 45 projects in 14 countries worldwide. Many of
the staff involved in our overseas conservation projects are based at
the our wildlife park. Consequently participants on ITC courses will be
exposed to the realities of endangered species and habitat recovery
projects through lectures, seminars, problem solving activities and
skills training direct from our field staff.
Images from the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust
“Empower Rural Women – End Hunger
and Poverty” 8 March 2012
This International Women’s Day is one of inspiration and
celebration. This day serves to connect women from all walks of life in all
parts of the world.
However, according to some estimates, women represent 70 per
cent of the world’s poor. These women are particularly dependent on
biodiversity for their livelihoods, and in some cases, their survival. This
year’s theme “Empower Rural Women – End Hunger and Poverty” is particularly relevant
to the first and third Millennium Development Goals which call for the
eradication of extreme hunger and poverty as well as the promotion of gender
equality and empowerment. This cannot be done without special attention to the
world`s biodiversity without which we would all be economically, socially and
The current rate of biodiversity loss is severe. So sever in
fact that we are exacerbating the detrimental impacts of climate change and
risk initiating further conflicts over limited natural resources and
accelerating widespread poverty. The Convention is strongly committed to recognizing
and promoting the integral yet distinct roles that women and men play in
conserving, sustainably using, and sharing biodiversity. For example, the
Convention has recognized the vital role of women in its preamble, and the
Conference of the Parties has adopted the a Gender Action Plan, included women’s
needs into the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, emphasized the importance of mainstreaming
gender into all the programmes of work under the Convention, and called for the
full support of women in the implementation of the Strategic Plan for
Additionally, the Conference of the Parties has promoted
national-level biodiversity management by requesting that gender be
mainstreamed into Parties’ national biodiversity strategies and action plans.
In December 2011, the first Expert Meeting on Biodiversity
for Poverty Eradication and Development was held in Dehradun, India. This Expert Group
produced recommendations on the integration, valuation, capacity development,
and monitoring of how to mainstream biodiversity and ecosystem services into
poverty eradication and development processes. One of the conclusions of the
Expert Group was that the Convention process needs to ensure that women, indigenous
and local communities, and the poor and vulnerable are able to understand as
well as benefit from initiatives for conserving, using and valuing
As the world celebrates this year’s International Women’s
Day, we at the Convention Secretariat are proud to be doing our part in
ensuring that this goal will be met and that all citizens of the planet,
without exception, can benefit from biodiversity and contribute to a
I wish all women of the world a memorable and meaningful
celebration of this International Women’s Day.
LONDON, UK / WASHINGTON, DC: Internet giant Amazon.com has now officially banned the sale of all whale and dolphin products from its wholly owned Japanese website, following global outrage that these products were offered for sale.
Amazon confirmed the prohibition on its main website by adding language under the Food and Beverage section that prohibits "Products containing shark, whale, or dolphin" and Amazon’s Japanese website contains a similar ban on selling whale dolphin products.
The Environmental Investigation Agency and Humane Society International revealed last month that Amazon Japan not only sold products from endangered and protected whale species, but also products containing dangerous levels of mercury.
In response, Amazon withdrew all whale products from Amazon Japan within 24 hours but declined to make any formal policy commitment regarding a permanent ban.
However, as of March 7, both the Amazon.com website and its Japanese version contain an explicit prohibition on the sale of products from whales and dolphins.
“Amazon.com has taken the right decision to enact a company-wide ban on the sale of all products derived from whales and dolphins,” said Clare Perry, senior campaigner for the Environmental Investigation Agency. ”Internet sales are a major threat to endangered and threatened wildlife and we strongly urge all other internet companies selling such products to follow Amazon’s lead.”
“Amazon heard the public loud and clear,” said Kitty Block, vice president of Humane Society International. “Amazon should be congratulated for being responsive to its consumers’ pleas that whales and dolphins should be protected and not sold for profit.”
After many years of pioneering work for Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, Lee collected her well-deserved award from no less than the Prince of Wales. After she was honoured on Thursday in the investiture ceremony, she thanked all the conservationists, members and volunteers for their dedication.
Of her award Lee said: ‘I am very honoured, but I feel it is more for my colleagues and friends at Durrell, past and present, who work tirelessly on our mission of saving species from extinction.’
Lee has been recognized for her major role in protecting endangered species and in particular her outstanding work as co-ordinator in many Madagascar projects. Not to mention her work as a celebrated author, television presenter and pilot.
Image from the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust