AboutZoos, Since 2008


Unset­tling video released of the African con­ti­nent with­out animals

pub­lished 23 Decem­ber 2013 | mod­i­fied 03 Novem­ber 2014

Green­peace recently released an ani­ma­tion video high­light­ing the global bio­di­ver­sity cri­sis. The hack into Disney’s clas­sic The Lion King, where all ani­mals are removed from the movie’s title sequence, leaves us with the beau­ti­ful yet oppres­sive back­grounds of the African savanna.

African lion tree UgandaHope­fully, Africa’s ani­mals will not van­ish as sug­gested. Nev­er­the­less, it is exactly what’s hap­pen­ing in parts of the con­ti­nent due to poach­ing, unsus­tain­able bush­meat trade, habi­tat loss and habi­tat frag­men­ta­tion, mas­sive devel­op­ment projects that are often poorly planned, and a boom­ing human pop­u­la­tion. Despite many con­ser­va­tion efforts, Africa’s big mam­mal pop­u­la­tions declined by 59 per­cent in just 40 years [study report by Craigie and oth­ers]. Poach­ing led to the death of 22,000 African ele­phants last year, a poach­ing rate of 7,4% that exceeds the nat­ural African ele­phant pop­u­la­tion increase of 5% [press release], and we have seen record lev­els of rhino poach­ing in Africa this year [sta­tis­tics]. More­over, the African lion pop­u­la­tion plum­meted, due to habi­tat loss, by around 70 per­cent from nearly 100,000 to about 32,000 since 1960 [Lion pop­u­la­tion 2012].

There’s still hope for wildlife on the African con­ti­nent, of course. As a mat­ter of fact the unset­tling sit­u­a­tion should be the incen­tive to increase con­ser­va­tion efforts, reduce bio­di­ver­sity loss and to fos­ter the wildlife we still have got left in var­i­ous part of the world. In addi­tion, rein­tro­duc­tion in the wild of captive-​bred indi­vid­u­als of threat­ened species could be enhanced, while at the same time con­serv­ing, improv­ing or expand­ing their orig­i­nal habi­tat. If we want to pre­vent the video to come true, that is.

This video was made by Stu­dio Smack in coop­er­a­tion with Green­peace NL and is cur­rently part of the online mag­a­zine GPM appear­ing four times a year.

(Source: Green­peace mag­a­zine NL, Decem­ber 2013; Mongabay, 20.12.2013)

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Tiger range countries map

Tiger map” (CC BY 2.5) by Sander­son et al., 2006.

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