I was driving in March 2018 when I heard on the radio that Sudan, the last male Northern White Rhino, had died. It was one of those ‘where were you when you heard?’ moments…
Like many people, I was saddened that he had died. He was elderly and had been deteriorating for some time, so perhaps it wasn’t surprising that in the end it was kinder to let him go.
Sudan was the last male Northern White Rhino, leaving only two remaining females, his daughter and grand-daughter. Scientists have stored some of Sudan’s genetic material. The experts think there may still be some slim chance for the Northern White Rhino in the future.
EXTINCTION IN OUR LIFETIME?
In the meantime, there are other species that could also find themselves on the brink of extinction in our lifetime. I dread having to explain to my young Grandson why we didn’t do more to prevent poaching and habitat destruction. I hope he never needs to ask why we didn’t do more to protect tigers, snow leopards, mountain gorillas, giant pandas, Java rhinos and many more species. They include the cute ones that we romanticise and many smaller, unseen insects, reptiles and fish in vulnerable environments across the world.
It is too easy to be paralysed by the enormity of the problem. Fortunately there are brilliant organisations who have experienced teams tackling various aspects of the puzzle. From political problems that lead to habitat loss, wildlife trafficking, and education to animal welfare issues, there is so much to be achieved. We can help. All of our small individual efforts will add up.
Some of you may know that when you buy rhino paintings and prints from my website I make a donation to Save the Rhino.
Great Art for a Great Cause – go ahead and treat yourselves today and help to give a tomorrow to wildlife.