Last night I had the displeasure of watching Richard E. Grant and his The History of Safari programme on ABC. Well what does one say when the vitriol fills their mouth? I mean how can any thinking person who respects life enjoy seeing any animal killed for sport? Whether it is historical footage or not, seeing a black rhino, a highly endangered animal, downed in black and white film just fills me with rage.
I’m no vegetarian (except when my gall bladder demanded it) I eat meat, like any omnivorous animal, like a lion or leopard eats meat I understand that animals eating others is part of the way of life. Sure our overconsumption is another issue that we need to address as is our massive population. But the killing of magnificent animals like rhinos, leopards, lions, elephants and hippos for sport because they were vermin just sicken me.
Worse still there are psychopathic jerks who still want to go out, get a living animal in their sights and end its life, then admire their kill. I mean at what point does this count as sport: ride a bike, sure; hit a ball, fine ; shoot at a target, OK. But killing another living thing isn’t sport. Now don’t mention culling animals, that is a whole other argument; massive issues there too. But I can’t help thinking that going out killing animals for pleasure and the “thrill” of the hunt is just one step short of a person killing others for pleasure.
Some will say they are only animals, we are part of the animal world and that argument just plays into the outdated idea that the world is ours to use as we wish. That has got us into a whole lot of environmental issues and seen us wipe out some beautiful creatures, in the name of progress.
I f someone kills a person for pleasure we rightly say they are disturbed and wrong, they are rightly stopped and punished. But in some parts of the world the killing of animals for the joy of it is OK. All I can say if you think it is OK to go out and take another creatures life as a sporting thrill you need to take a long hard look at yourself. No one should deliberately go out to take life for a sport. You are the vermin if you do that.
This has indubitably been a bad year for rhinos, particularly if you are a rhino subspecies. As many would know the rarest rhino subspecies is the Northern White Rhino, with only 8 individuals. But a year ago we correctly should have said it was the Vietnamese subspecies of the Javan rhino. There are only around 50-60 Javan Rhinos, 3 of these were the Vietnamese Javan Rhino (Rhinoceros sondaicus annamiticus), in Cat Tien National Park in Vietnam. Sadly a month or so ago this subspecies was declared extinct. Sad on so many levels, but particularly when the rarest rhino species loses another bit of diversity. Now the Javan Rhino only exists in Ujung Kulon National Park in Java, a stable population that is well protected but highly prone to disease and unlikely to expand due to a lack of land. The Javan Rhino used to be the most widespread of all Asian rhinos, with three subspecies, sadly they now rank as one of the rarest animals in the world.
When I was a young boy the Black Rhino was the most plentiful of all rhinos, but sadly this year the West African Black Rhino (Diceros bicornis longipes) subspecies became extinct. This subspecies used to live in Cameroon but sadly no longer does. It is indeed sad that in this day and age we are seeing the continued killing of these large herbivores to fuel a moronic and unsubstantiated belief that rhino horn (made of Keratin – the same stuff as your fingernails) had medicinal value in Traditional Chinese medicine. Through this misguided value these beautiful creatures are hunted mercifully.
A sad indictment on our species if you ask me.
Right I will admit it, I used to think Elle Macpherson was great, she was a supermodel when I was at school, she was Australian and let’s be honest beautiful. She wasn’t dumb, and then when modelling wound up she went into business. But I am afraid to say she is a goose. In fact I use much stronger words in private. Why? Well in a recent interview with Times Online she admitted she uses Rhino horn. Yes “The Body” takes rhino horn. I will now not acknowledge any discussion about how bright she was because she is a prize fool in my eyes now. How a public figure can promote this is beyond me.
There are 8 Northern White rhinos left, yes 8. Their numbers were shockingly reduced in the last 10 years. Check out the desperate last bid to save them here. There are only 60 Javan rhinos left in Indonesia and the Vietnamese subspecies has about 3 left, with the assumption being they are all females, so that subspecies is gone. The Javan rhino is generally regarded as the rarest species of any large mammal. there are around 1000 Giant pandas and around 700 mountain gorillas left and both are in desperate danger, yet there are only 60 Javan Rhinos. The Sumatran rhino is also in real danger as while there are around 250 individuals left, and their numbers are also in decline while the Javan Rhino’s population is stable.
What is awful is that it is a bloody renewable resource, they re-grow, so if all these hokey herbalists are right, why not cultivate it instead of killing some huge beast to cut off the device that ironically nature gave it to protect itself? Well that is too hard, or maybe they are too dumb to think of it. Or maybe they love rhino horn costing more than gold on a black market. By the way rhino horn is keratin not bone. That means it is the same as fingernails. Chew your bloody fingernails then!
And yet this boofhead feels comfortable telling people she uses rhino horn. Well shame on you Elle, I would love to take you to a rhino carcass with the horn cut off and see what you think of rhino horn then. Maybe you just wouldn’t care, because maybe your choice to use rhino horn illustrates what you are really like.
Now for a long time there have only been 5 species of rhino, two in Africa (White and Black) and three in Asia (Indian, Javan and Sumatran). The Javan rhino has for a while been the most critically endangered with only 60 individuals across two locations. In fact the Vietnamese Javan Rhino subspecies miraculously survived the idiotic war there but now appears to be less than 5 individuals with speculation they are only females.
However the Javan rhino may now lose its mantle as the rarest rhino species. A recent report has suggested that the Northern White Rhino (Ceratotherium Simum Cottoni) is not a subspecies of the White Rhino but a district sixth species. This has profound results. No longer is there a chance of saving the Northern White Rhino by cross breeding with the plentiful Southern sub species. Moreover no longer is it merely a sub species that is in danger (many rhino subspecies have become extinct already), but an actual species that has less than 20 individuals remaining.
Another report located here explains how Northern White Rhinos have been shipped from a zoo to Kenya in a last ditch attempt to save them.
OK, I’ll admit it, since being a little kid I have loved rhinos. Why? Who knows it is just one of those things. Well I am terribly saddened when I discovered there are only 8 Northern White Rhinos left. Yes you read right: 8. Read about it here.
Now I understand that animals like the Panda are pretty and get all the endangered animals press but there are around 1,000 of them left not 8! The Northern White Rhino is extinct in the wild and the 8 remaining ones are in zoos. By the way if you didn’t know the Javan Rhino has only about 60 left. Gee we as a species have a lot to answer for.