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India: Seventh case of rhino poaching in North Bengal wildlife sanctuary
The carcass of a rhino was recovered in the Chilapata range of the Jaldapara Wild Life sanctuary in Jalpaiguri on Saturday.
The horn of the rhino was missing and evidently cut off. Top forest officials confirmed that this is the seventh case of rhino poaching in the Wildlife sanctuary in the past one and half years.
The seventh victim of the poachers was detected on Saturday morning when a group of forest guards were patrolling the core of the forest areas. The carcass was detected with its horn cut off from the base. It was of a full grown rhino.
Forest officials said that the forest patrolling could not be done in the past three four days because of incessant rains and the poachers gang took advantage of this.
Poachers gang had been particularly active in the North Bengal forests for the past two years and apart from seven rhinos, at least nine tuskers have also been killed under mysterious circumstances during this period. The tusks were all removed when the carcass were detected.
Unfortunately every time the forest department lodged FIRs against unknown persons but it had evidently failed to make a breakthrough in detecting the gang members. Experienced forest officials wanting anonymity said that these are inter-state gang, operating in Assam, North East and also in North Bengal forests.
Full story at indianexpress.com/article/india/west-bengal/seventh-case-of-rhino-poaching-in-north-bengal-wildli...
#India #rhino #elephants #poaching
Image: Rhinoceros in India's Kaziranga park, by Satish Krishnamurthy ... See MoreSee Less
13 minutes ago ·
Zimbabwe: Young elephants 'trafficked' to China
A wildlife saga that has sparked international outrage took a new twist yesterday when 24 elephant calves were flown from Harare to China.
They were among a group of 36 calves taken from their herds in Zimbabwe's flagship Hwange National Park and held at a holding facility since August.
Conservationists from across the world have staunchly opposed the capture and sale of the calves to zoos and safari parks in China, which have poor animal welfare records.
Johnny Rodrigues, director of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, said he was "gutted" after learning that the elephants were leaving Zimbabwe.
"Three of four baby Hwange elephants shipped to a Chinese zoo and a safari park in 2012 are no longer alive, and the fourth is suffering from depression and ill-health."
Rodrigues said he fears the latest shipment will form part of a mass sale of elephants and lions caught in Zimbabwe reserves to Chinese enterprises, including circuses.
"Our government is robbing us and our future generations, and China is plundering Africa's heritage ...
"The government must be held accountable. The facilities in China have shocking histories of animal abuse, and poor animal husbandry and veterinary care."
The loading for transport was under tight security enforced by military and national intelligence officials, out of sight of the public, at about 7am yesterday.
The Zimbabwean government, which is in huge debt to China and unable to pay Zimbabwe National Parks employees, has brushed aside criticism, saying that the animals must pay for themselves.
#Zimbabwe #Africa #China #elephants
Image: Zimbabwe exported eight elephants, including this male, to China in 2012. Most are now reported to be dead (c) Chian Zoo Watch ... See MoreSee Less
1 hour ago ·
Indonesia: First Resources the latest palm oil giant to announce zero-deforestation commitment
Palm oil giant First Resources has committed to eliminate deforestation and rights abuses from its supply chain, making it the first palm producer operating primarily at the grower level to do so.
The policy, announced on Wednesday, is the latest in a wave of sustainability commitments from corporations that produce, trade and use palm oil.
First Resources' policy was designed in conjunction with a coalition of environmental groups, including Switzerland-headquartered The Forest Trust (TFT), whose founder, Scott Poynton, argues that companies must move beyond certification schemes for timber and agricultural commodities.
Singapore-listed First Resources has long been a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), an eco-certification initiative that requires its members to abide by certain social and environmental criteria when opening up new lands for plantations. But First Resources' new policy marks the installment of more stringent standards than those to which the RSPO holds its members.
Where the RSPO does not ban all deforestation, for example, First Resources has prohibited the destruction of high carbon stock (HCS) forest, whose definition as containing more than 35 tons of carbon per hectare generally applies to any forest more robust than shrubland. While the RSPO forbids clearance of high conservation value (HCV) forest, it makes no mention of HCS ...
Tomasz Johnson of London-based NGO the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) ... said that while the new policy would be a positive step if implemented fully and effectively, for that to happen there would need to be a paradigm shift in the company’s approach to indigenous peoples and to conflict resolution.
“EIA remains open to engagement if there is a concrete, transparent process that might relieve the huge pressure First Resources has placed on [indigenous] Dayak communities, and prevent it from destroying more forest,” he said. “Until that is in place, any palm oil buyers should exercise extreme caution in having any dealings with this firm."
Full story on Mongabay.com at news.mongabay.com/2015/0703-jacobson-first-resources-new-policy.html
#Indonesia #palmoil #deforestation
Image: Muara Tae residents Petrus Asuy, left, and Masrani Tran sit in territory claimed by both their village and neighboring Muara Ponak, which struck a deal with First Resources to develop an oil palm plantation in the area (c) EIA ... See MoreSee Less
3 days ago ·