The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to proclaim the 3rd of March as UN World Wildlife Day.
The day came about to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild animals and plants.
World Wildlife Day will be celebrated in 2016 under the theme “The future of wildlife is in our hands.” African and Asian elephants will be a main focus of the Day under the theme “The future of elephants is in our hands”.
Threats to wildlife
There is a constant threat to all wildlife whether that be from: pollution, poaching, trafficking, environmental changes, hunting or habitat destruction.
Poaching has become a massive problem for endangered species and we have recently seen the unfortunate and unnecessary extinction of the West African Black Rhino.
The world is dealing with an unprecedented spike in illegal wildlife trade, threatening to overturn decades of conservation gains.
Much like illegal drugs, animal parts such as tusks, horns and vital organs are trafficked internationally. A lot of the time, the reason behind poaching is because it is believed that certain body parts of animals are essential for creating “experimental” medicines. Trafficking of these animal parts usually occurs in the more valuable and rare species such as Leatherback Sea Turtles, Saolas, Leopards and Rhinos.
While we are seeing positive progress to tackle illicit wildlife trafficking, more needs to be done by all of us. On this World Wildlife Day, we hope to see even more commitments coming from countries and citizens around the world.
If you’re wondering how to get involved and help raise awareness this World Wildlife Day then here are a few ways:
- Voice your opinions on social media using the hashtags #WorldWildlifeDay #InOurHands and #WWD2016.
- Take a trip out to your local zoo, wildlife centre or national park.
- Get talking about world wildlife in schools, universities and places of work.
- Support local conservation projects.
- Produce your own promotional material for World Wildlife Day
For further information visit their website here.
“The Future of Wildlife is in our Hands”