Will You Be Marching On World Animal Day

Will You Be Marching On World Animal Day

Will You Be Marching On World Animal Day. Saturday October 4, 2014 will be here in a flash. It is evident that people all around the world care about the creatures with whom we share the planet. The Animal Movement is growing exponentially and is now developing a active followers in countries like China – Japan – India – Romania – Spain and Sri Lanka.

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World Animal Day – October 4, 2014

World Animal Day – October 4, 2014

World Animal Day – October 4, 2014 – Human beings have far more in common than not – but we tend to forget that in our constant striving for supremacy – we are right and you are wrong – greed – the pursuit of money and recognition – the need to dominate – corruption – the destruction of our environment by irresponsible corporations and absurd political posturing.

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African Trip June 2014

African Trip June 2014

Travel With Dick Berry This Summer

African Trip June 2014 – There are still some spaces available if a trip to Africa this June is of interest to you. A small group – no red umbrellas to follow through a crowd – dedicated travellers with a great photographer and guide to ensure an incredible vacation.

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Carter And Olivia – OMG – One More Generation

Carter and Olivia – OMG – One More Generation.

Carter and Olivia – OMG – One More Generation. Jim Ries of Fayetteville, Georgia – USA – has two incredible kids named Carter (11.5) and Olivia (10) who are passionate about animals. In 2009 they started to adopt endangered cheetahs in South Africa because they understood the concept of “extinct”.

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Rhino Poaching – Is There A Crisis?

Rhino Poaching Crisis

In an article on February 13, 2013 the Canadian Press by The Associated Press released the following figures. These numbers are alarming and this represents a tragedy in the making. There are 5 species of Rhinoceros, and of these, only the White Rhinoceros is not critically endangered. Still world leaders and CITES stands by and twiddle their collective thumbs. Poachers are decimating these animals.

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Rhinos – Do You Now How Many Species Exist?

Rhinos

The Rhinoceros – from the Family Rhinoceroidae – is commonly referred to as a Rhino. It’s believed that the earliest Rhino is the Sumatran Rhino – descended from the Woolly Rhino over 15 million years ago. These animals, in similar fashion to the Woolly Mammoth, were hunted to extinction by early man. Today’s rhino is a thick skinned, mostly hairless animal with more slender legs than the portly hippo, and three toes.  A lot of people are not aware that the Rhino is endangered.

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Hippos – Is A Hippo Cute Or Dangerous?

Hippos

The Hippopotamus – from the ancient Greek meaning – Horse of the River. These massive creatures are an amphibious mammal living in the rivers, lakes and swamps of sub-Saharan Africa. Typically a bull rules over a cow and calf.  However, he is happier when he has an extended family,  and there can be as many as 30 or 40 cows and calves in a pod – (apparently also called a bloat). The calves are born under water after an 8 month gestation period and are usually weaned at one year of age. It is thought that hippos and whales may share a common history going back over 54 million years.

HIPPO AND BABY

Hippos live mostly in the water during the day and come out at dusk to feed on grasses. Under water their nostrils close and they can stay submerged for as long as 20 – 25 minutes, although they usually surface every 6 -7 minutes. Their bodies secrete a pinkish, oily substance that acts as a sunscreen to protect their skin – which is very thick and mostly hairless. Of the big African animals – Hippos are third in size – next to the Elephant and the Rhino. 

HIPPO - HEAD IN WATER

A hippo has enormous jaws that can open to 180 degrees and the ivory canine teeth are self-sharpening as they grid them together. It’s massive head can account for about a third of it’s total body weight. A large hippo can weigh as much as 4 tonnes and be 12 -15 feet long. Hippos have 4 webbed toes and short, stubby legs. But don’t assume that they are slow-moving behemoths. A hippo can run as fast as 30 to 40 km/hour for a short period of time, so he can easily outrun a human.

HIPPO YAWNING

Even though they may appear to be passive creatures as they wallow away their days in the water – hippos are actually fierce, easily enraged and very aggressive. They are considerd to be one of the most dangerous creatures in Africa. Males will fight to the death and a female around her calf can be equally dangerous. They will attack without provocation and are responsibe for more human deaths than crocodiles and lions. They communicate with one another with fierce grunts and nosiy bellows. Their biggest enemy is man, although lions can bring down a baby or an ailing adult hippo.

MALE HIPPOS FIGHTING

The numbers of the big common Hippo are declining. They are experiencing habitat loss and are poached for their meat, which is illegal to sell, and for their huge ivory canine teeth which can be up to a foot in length. Hippos are a popular zoo animals and they breed well in captivity. So in spite of the popular holiday song – I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas – this is not an animal to ever under-estimate.

And Then There’s The Pygmy Hippo

The Pygmy Hippo – The Water Cow –  is found in West Africa. He is a water and forest dwelling animal who is half the height of his cousin and weighs about 75% less that the big Common Hippo. The Pygmy Hippo is a very secretive, and often solitary animal who lives on ferns and fruit. It is hunted for it’s meat and sadly is now on the Endangered List due to a loss of habitat due to forest clearing and human poaching.

 

PYGMY HIPPO

Pygmy Hippos Can Live For 40-50 Years In A Zoo And Longer In The Wild.