In this modern age, we find that as we progress more and more the condition of our Earth becomes worse and worse. Our environment is under threat and with it our wildlife.
The last hundred years or so saw the demise of the dodo, the passenger pigeon, and other species. Today more and more species are threatened with extinction If the threats -persist, we will surely lose them forever.
The main thing that threatens our wildlife is the ever-increasing demands made on Earth by man. Man’s population is increasing by leaps and bounds. It has already passed the six thousand million mark and shows no sign of abating, More people means more land is needed for housing. Thus jungles are cleared for houses and towns. As we take up more space, less is available for our wildlife. Consequently, their numbers are reduced. sometimes to dangerously low levels.
Clearing up the jungle for living space is just one of the problems. Another is the decimation of the jungle for economic gain. Wood is a valuable commodity. So much so some profit-minded businessmen simply cut down the jungles without caring a bit for the animals that live in it. These dumb creatures cannot protest. They simply perish. Occasionally a tiger may attack the man because it cannot find any prey. Without exception, this tiger is doomed to die by the hands of those who took away its jungle in the first place.
This invasion of the natural habitat of our wildlife by us has got to stop if we value them at all. Our population has got to be controlled and not allowed to get out of hand as it is now. This means proper planning on the part of our governments to keep their population in manageable proportions. We have to be very careful whenever we consider cutting down our jungles in the name of development. We must not blindly develop our land only to discover later that we have lost our wildlife forever. ‘Wildlife is an essential part of our environment. To destroy our wildlife is to destroy our environment. If our environment is destroyed then we will perish too.
Hunting animals for sports and economic gain also threatens our wildlife. The rhinoceros is hunted for its horn. The elephant is hunted for its tusk. Rhinoceros horns and elephant tusks fetch lucrative returns for the hunters. Hunting these animals has been banned but it goes on unabated. The law-enforcers cannot cope with the number of poachers. So these animals remained threatened. The only way to deal with this problem is to educate the people about the cruelty perpetrated on these animals. Perhaps then they will stop this slaughter.
As long as we see the Earth as something to be exploited, then there is no hope. No matter what steps are taken to safeguard our wildlife, sooner or later we will forget them and resume the destruction of the environment. Only if we can realize that we are all intimately connected with our environment will we then desist from destroying it? At present this is not realized by most men for we are still bent on destroying our wildlife and environment. Perhaps one day all men will realize this. By then it may be too late.