Safari Africa dangerous Animal News

December 11, 2011. Dangerous animal attacks around the world
In USA, Asia, Africa, Australia  and many parts of the world you find that  animal attacks are not a thing of the past as they have been part of us day in and day out.. People all over are attacked by dogs bears, snakes foxes at any given place and time just going for an African Safari as any thing can happen, for all our mountain climbing fans who by sheer luck may stop and be attacked by a mountain lion or just a deer crossing the road.

For those who love nature and the wilderness, tracking and trailing in the woods can make you be a victim of a dangerous animal attack as many people have encountered unprovoked attacks depending on the time of day or the season when this animal came into contact with man.  While you are in Africa the big five mainly the African elephant and the lion or cat family are on the forefront in many natural attacks in many parts of Africa. In Asia, the endangered Siberia tiger family of the big cats is just one dangerous animal which has been raising terror in the Asian continent just like dangerous dog breeds in USA.

Animal attacks tend to take place everywhere many places such as animal zoos, animal shelters and animal sanctuaries are not spared. The people working with these animals end up to be victims of circumstances where as national parks are not spared with animal attacks in different parts of the world. Game rangers safari drivers and even animal doctors who sometimes take their time to come and treat these animals are also attacked with these animals which as of yet, people have not yet understood as to why animals attack even if they are not provoked.

People in Asia have amazing facts about animal attacks. Way back around 500 years ago, elephants were used to punish people who had made mistakes and people were either stepped on by elephants or trampled upon on the head. It was a practiced which was done by the ruling elite and later as a means of going to war against their enemy. Now days there are many animal attacks which are documented live on TV showing the Asian elephant attacking people during cultural and religious ceremonies. Just as the Asian elephant was easy to tame rather than the African elephant, the Asian elephant with its natural habitat lost despite being a respected religious animal these endangered dangerous species are animals that need to be respected in their natural habitat and while they are in captivity as well and we should be glad of the beauty and their joy they bring to us with all the nice pictures people take as well.

Is anything being done to stop animal attacks? Well a lot has been said and done  but with the ever increasing of animal and  lack of education and training on how to take care of these beautiful dangerous animals, many attacks areas till to come and we will keep on seeing many animal attacks so long s there is someone who is not responsible in taking care of animals and not being  aware of what to do while in the anima territory or breeding grounds. While the brown bears, Asian monkeys, and the Siberian tiger, the African elephant can cause both human and property destruction, snakes, spiders, jellyfish  are just as dangerous and will attack humans of all ages at any time and place  given the fact that many  American grizzly and black bears who are on their way for hibernation need not be startled  the same applies when they are foraging for food with their cubs as this will always provoke  the dangerous bears to attack  and the worst thing is that  an  unprovoked attack and without a bear paper spray playing dead face down might just save your life to live another day and mind you, this is just not one of the steed fast rules that you need to play dead as you might as well end up dead with these bear attack..

For centuries, man has tamed the wilderness venturing into the unknown and cutting across vast lands and diminishing the natural animal habitat. Man has kept on poaching and not many of them are spared with these dangerous animal attacks encounters. Those animal s which are killed for the sake of their fur, tusks teeth or toes are lucky to have gone back to nature but the young cubs and beautiful babies end up being reared in captivity. Now days not so many animals  reared in captivity are reintroducing in the wilderness due to the fear that the last endangered animals might as well be the last one just as the Javan rhino which was the last one of its kind in part of the Asian region, many pet owners who have abandoned their dangerous pets such as the baby Nile crocodiles and baby alligators just because they have overgrown their fish tanks or the harmless albino python, the dangerous tarantulas and the dirt frogs  have come back to haunt many campers and people enjoying the flora and fauna of their region.

Dangerous animal attacks have also been contributed by the changing weather conditions in many parts of USA, Australia and Europe coupled with wild fires and natural floods that have brought these dangerous animals closer to many of mans natural habitat and his natural daily environment. Many people during these changing weather conditions have woken wake up to find different dangerous endangered animals stranded at their door steps, gardens, burns even parking garages. Being exhausted with the prevailing weather conditions many attacks take place as these animals are just not aware on what to do and change to their attack or fright mechanism as they find themselves to have been washed away from their natural habitat and find themselves separated with their families while some get stuck in the mud and succumb to the natural harsh weather conditions.

Anima attacks are not going to end unless there is  communication being passed on to those people living within natural anima breeding grounds or animal habitat and for the many people who come in contact with animals while  in the wilderness its always wise to respect these animals at all cost. Playing with them will just make trouble for you wit these animals. Wanting to get a closer look for a good picture will just create panic to these animals and you will be the big picture on the news the next day instead of the picture in your favorite photo of the year award.

Remember proper animal attack protection gear is always necessary.  Nice walking shoes, a snake grabber stick for those who handle snakes, proper outfit and walking in a crowd is all what makes a difference while you are out there.  Remember it’s a jungle out there! Its with proper information, education and communication that can play a very vital role in prevention of animal attacks and protection of these endangered species. With the emerging awareness of  animal rights  and their protection  as well, these animals will have a world which is fit for them and fit for us as we are part of nature which can be provoked or unprovoked with reasons best known for it to attack as it has always been and will always be.

Safari Africa dangerous Animal News
November 27, 2011. Wolfgang's Kenya conservation news – 87 more tusks found in container destined for China
A Hong Kong bound container with 87 elephant tusks was seized over the weekend in Nairobi, when alert customs and security officials opened the container for a physical spot check, after various inconsistencies rang the alarm bells and raised suspicion of illicit contraband being hidden amongst the consignment of handicraft for importers in China. The entire container was subsequently scanned before being opened, at which stage the blood ivory was discovered hidden amongst other export items in the various crates.

Chinas reluctance in joining Africa to combat poaching with more draconian measures has been largely blamed for the rocketing rise in poaching across the continent, with rhino horn and ivory the main targets of poachers, costing South Africa alone over 300 rhinos this year, with one reportedly being killed ever 21 hours for the prized, but otherwise useless horn. Importers attribute healing properties to the ground horn, but experts say it would just be as good if the beneficiaries of such concoctions would bit off and eat their own finger nails, which is made of the very same substance as rhino horn.
African wildlife managers, conservationists and globally active NGOs have sharply critizised African governments too of dragging their feet in significantly raising the stakes in terms of fines and sentences for poachers and smugglers, and while making every effort within the resources available, seem to be fighting a losing battle against organized commercial poaching and smuggling operations.
Meanwhile though full kudos to the Kenyan officials who intercepted this latest shipment of blood ivory, while mourning the loss of at least another 44 elephant.

October 12, 2011 Mario Osava. Shark Attacks Attest to Environmental Sins of Suape Port. RECIFE, Brazil,   (Tierramérica) - The Suape port complex may be eternally absolved of its environmental sins for ushering in unprecedented prosperity in the impoverished northeastern Brazilian state of Pernambuco, and for having been built before stricter requirements were introduced.

But there are dramatic testaments to its original sins, which include the interruption, due to the construction of causeways, of the flow of two of the four rivers that empty into the Bay of Suape, 40 kilometres south of Recife, the capital of Pernambuco.

The construction of the port began in 1977, but progressed slowly because of the difficulty in attracting companies to the industrial complex that forms part of the project.

Sharks began attacking swimmers, and especially surfers on the beaches of Recife, as of 1992, after the port began receiving larger numbers of ships between 1989 and 1991.

Between June 1992 and September 2006, there were 47 shark attacks reported, resulting in 17 deaths, according to a study conducted by Fabio Hazin, director of the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture at the Federal Rural University of Pernambuco, with two fellow researchers.

The number of shark attacks is alarmingly high for a mere 20-kilometre stretch of coastline, considering that the worldwide average is less than 100 attacks a year, most of them in Australia, the United States and South Africa. The sudden outbreak of attacks is also surprising.

Shark attacks were formerly unheard of in Recife, which rules out such explanations as a larger number of surfers, who have been coming to the local beaches since the 1960s, or an underwater topography conducive to the entry of large fish species, which is also nothing new, argues Hazin, who chairs the State Committee for Monitoring Shark Incidents.

Instead, the evidence uncovered in the study by Hazin and his colleagues points to the Suape port as a factor in this outbreak, since sharks tend to follow ships, increasing the risk of attacks near port areas. The number of cases in Recife rose sharply in months when the terminal received more than 30 vessels, the study observed.

Another possible factor was the filling in of the mouths of the Ipojuca and Merepe Rivers in the Bay of Suape, to prepare for the construction of port facilities and various industries. This blocked access to the rivers for bull sharks (Carcharhinus leucas), which seek out less saline waters to spawn.

As a consequence, the bull shark population was displaced to the mouth of the Jaboatão River, which is closer to Recife and the beaches most affected by attacks. This migration was also spurred by the decrease in plankton in Suape, another environmental impact of the port, which reduced the influx of fish and crustaceans in search of food, added Hazin.

Added to this is the deepwater channel near the beaches of Boa Viagem and Piedade, where "almost 80 percent" of the incidents studied were concentrated, he said.

Moreover, pollution from the Jaboatão River, which carries animal blood and entrails from slaughterhouses, may have contributed to particularly attracting bull sharks, an especially aggressive species involved in the majority of the attacks.

These last two factors, which are unrelated to the port, are naturally emphasised by the supporters of Suape, which boasts the second best environmental management of all the ports in Brazil, according to the National Aquatic Transportation Agency, the government regulatory authority.

The Suape Port and Industrial Complex covers 13,500 hectares around the bay, but 59 percent of this area is devoted to environmental conservation, a fact that has inspired "admiration among Europeans," said Roberto de Abreu e Lima of the Economic Development Secretariat (SDEC) of Pernambuco, which is responsible for the port’s management.

The proportion initially planned was 45 percent, "but we expanded the environmental conservation area, as well as creating ecological corridors to better preserve biodiversity," he told Tierramérica, while acknowledging that there are still challenges to confront, such as the restoration of mangroves and forests along the banks of the rivers.

Suape is a word from the language of the indigenous Caeté people, whose communities on the Pernambuco coast were decimated in the 16th century, forcing them to migrate inland. It means "winding roads," which is an apt description for the estuary of "rivers and mangroves with many curves," SDEC consultant Daniel Cabral told Tierramérica.

The Centre for Environmental Technology, created in partnership with the state-owned oil company Petrobrás, will monitor the water, air and soil in the entire port complex, noted Abreu e Lima.

Suape is a "natural port" with deep waters along the coast and in the bay, which meant that little intervention was required, except for a 300-meter trench opened in the reefs to protect the wharves, SDEC economic sectors manager Felipe Chaves told Tierramérica.

But human interference - such as the construction of a port combined with an industrial complex - affects marine ecosystems in ways that are difficult to assess, and the shark attacks represent "the small visible part" of these impacts, commented Hazin.

If the Suape port had been built in more recent years, it would have confronted serious objections, such as those faced by projects currently in development. Porto Sul, a private port project in the state of Bahia, to the south of Pernambuco, was moved to a different location this year because of protests from environmentalists, who said that it threatened protected forests and mangroves.

The Açú Superport, another private venture conceived as a giant industrial complex 320 kilometres north of Rio de Janeiro, faces ongoing opposition from displaced farmers, environmentalists and local communities.

In 1975, the Suape port project was harshly criticised by Pernambuco intellectuals in a highly publicised manifesto, which declared that it was the result of an "authoritarian" decision and threatened the flourishing tourism in an area of "artistic heritage" created by nature. Environmental issues were not yet a widespread concern at the time.

Today, the huge numbers of workers who have come to the area are affecting tourism through the conversion of hotels and family homes into workers’ accommodations, even on nearby beaches such as those of Porto de Galinhas, an international tourism destination located 20 kilometres south of Suape. The heavy traffic on roads into the area also keeps tourists away.

Most hotel owners have no complaints, since they are making more money now that their establishments are occupied full-time and they continue to charge the same rates they always have, Rubia Melo, the natural resources coordinator in the neighboring municipality of Cabo de Santo Agostinho, told Tierramérica.

But nearby cities are suffering the effects of air pollution, the thousands of buses and trucks clogging up highways and roads, and the sudden extreme rise in demand for transportation, sanitation, health care and housing, she noted.

Nevertheless, said Melo, if these impacts can be mitigated soon, "the future will be better for the local population."

* The author is an IPS correspondent. This story was originally published by Latin American newspapers that are part of the Tierramérica network. Tierramérica is a specialised news service produced by IPS with the backing of the United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Environment Programme and the World Bank. (END)

May 16, 2011. Curtis Lehman. OUR NEWEST PARK ELEPHANT
Welcome, Sundzu!
Back on the morning of December 27, 2010, we were happily surprised by the birth of Litsemba’s second calf. Despite having our birth watch/research team ready to go and monitoring her hormone levels as they fell to birthing levels, she gave birth before we thought she was very close. The calf was up and walking with the rest of the herd out in our main yard as we came in to start our day. A quick lookover from outside the yard, and we could tell where he was born and that Litsemba had passed her placenta. He obviously had met all of his herdmates, was nursing, and if he had had a sign around his neck saying “I weigh 230 pounds” we wouldn’t have had to do anything that morning. Well, that little guy now weighs 486 pounds (221 kilograms) and has had a name since early March.

Tsandzikle (ta-Sond-zuh-Kee-lay) was named after David Tappan, an Elephant Odyssey donor who passed away last year. The Hebrew name Dawid was probably derived from Hebrew (dwd) meaning “beloved”; the SiSwati language had two translations for “beloved”: the adjective Tsandzekako (ta-Sond-zuh gah-go) or the noun Tsandzikle. We liked the noun version the best, and we usually call him by the nickname “Sund-zu.” We didn’t want him to be called Mister Ga-GO!

What a playful little guy!
He’s about as cute as they come. Sundzu loves to solicit attention and scratches from all of his keepers and constantly patrols the fence line as we clean the yards, hoping to pull us away from our never-ending clean up. Who can resist that face? He is a great source of entertainment for us because of his playful nature and the way he interacts with the other three amigos born last year. He’s got a great trumpet, he always seems to be running somewhere, and he has the full repertoire of calf behavior we’ve grown to love and adore: the threatening “scary face” they all make, plowing through the hay, challenging anything and everything that does or doesn’t move, climbing onto whoever he can, and playing in the mud bogs. He seems to be the most playful calf we’ve had, and he loses track of Mom’s whereabouts quite often because of it. You can see his anxiety building up once he realizes Mom’s not around, and then comes his mighty roar that gets Mom a runnin’ to the rescue!

His big brother, Impunga, is mostly indifferent to him. Poor Punga has been displaced by Mom so much that he roars for mercy when she just looks at him funny. He’s not the apple of Mom’s eye anymore, but he still hangs around close enough to benefit from her social protection but far enough away to avoid her trunk swats and tusks. We try to make up for it by giving Punga lots of lovin’ and training sessions as often as we can. He still enjoys wrestling with ‘Musi and can’t resist a mud bog dog pile on a hot day.

The best way to see all this activity is, of course, to come out to the Safari Park and spend a few hours watching our amazing herd do their thing. If you see me out at the Elephant Viewing Patio for our daily Elephant Enrichment activity at 11:30 a.m., introduce yourselves and say hello. That’s all for now; more snippets to come.