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Review of UK’s wolf reintroduction problem

2012 年 12 月 23 日 日曜日

(By Daniel Lee)

 

gray_wolfHistorically, wolves had the largest natural distribution of any non-human mammalspecies. However, it cannot lay claim to this record as much of their former range has beenlost due to increasing pressure from humankind.

The British Isles, like Japan, was once home to wolves. Whereas the last wolf in Japan was killed in the early 20th century, in Ireland and Scotland it was last hunted to extinction in the 17th to 18th century. In Wales and England, wolves were deemed extinct by the 13th and 16th century respectively.

Wolves were severely persecuted in the British Isles due to a few reasons. Following Abrahamic religious traditions, the medieval mind took literally the idea that man had dominion over nature which can be exploited as a resource for humankind. Animals could thus be used for food, labour or sport. Unfortunately, among all other animals the
wolf has often been portrayed negatively. Wolves were depicted as monstrous rapacious beasts closely associated with witchcraft and the devil and a serious threat to livestock and livelihoods. Hence, they were considered evil, useless, and extremely dangerous and therefore ought to be exterminated for the betterment of all.

However, spurred by the success of wolf reintroduction in Yellowstone National Park, like Japan, the idea that wolves may once again roam the land in the United Kingdom has gained a foothold. Though still haunted by negative stereotypes, the wolf in recent years has been cast in a more positive light as more has been learnt about them.

The awareness of their plight from centuries of discrimination and their symbolic representation of the wild has captured the empathy and imagination of many. In addition, scientific understanding has brought an increasing awareness of the marvels of their social structure, the very low risk wolves’ presents to people and even to most livestock, the extent of its role in shaping ecosystems, allowing other species to flourish by regulating herbivore populations – has changed or altered attitudes and perceptions to this once near-universally maligned species.
In the United Kingdom, this ‘rewilding’ effort is in essence a broader ecological restoration project that considers the potential of other formerly native species of British flora and fauna for reintroduction which is strongly supported by the EU convention. As such, the reintroduction of large mammalian species native to the isles such as the elk, lynx, wolves and bear are being discussed.grey-wolf-pups

But as expected, the topic of wolf reintroduction never fails to stir up deep rooted emotions amongst those who would be directly involved and affected by their reintroduction.

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Follow-up story about the wolves in Portugal.

2012 年 10 月 5 日 金曜日

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Help the Iberian wolf!! They are encountaring a crisis of becoming homeless!

2012 年 9 月 24 日 月曜日

Portuguese wolf protecting group Grupo Lobo gave us this email.

We would like to share their wolf’s situation here.

****************************************************

We appreciate your answer and availability to help our publishing campaign in your website.

http://www.indiegogo.com/IberianWolf
http://lobo.fc.ul.pt/

Contrary to the wolf situation across most Europe and the particular case of the Iberian wolf in Spain, the Portuguese wolf population has not been expanding. According to the last population census (1996-97 and 2002-03) it has remained rather stable (being estimated around 300 individuals), with some packs in marginal distribution areas, showing increased instability and higher difficulty to establish.

One of the projects developed by our organization is the Iberian Wolf Recovery Centre (IWRC) was created in 1987 by Grupo Lobo. This project was founded with the aim of providing a safe environment in captivity for wolves that are unable to live in the freedom of the wild.

The Centre occupies 17 hectares of land in a wooded and secluded valley. The space is characterized by good vegetation cover and a variety of different landscape features, providing good shelter and conditions of refuge for the resident wolves.

The project tries to rehabilitate the wolves and ensures their welfare, and they will stay at the IWRC for the rest of their lives. The wolves live in enclosures of different sizes, with good vegetation cover, providing adequate shelter. The project tries to give the wolves a life as similar to that in the wild as much as possible. The wolves can be seen in their unique conditions from observation towers located at strategic points around the site, with a wide view of the different pens.

As well as providing the best care possible for the wolves, the Centre also carries out scientific studies, particularly in the area of social behaviour associated with investigations carried out in the wild by Grupo Lobo. These studies are part of a wider publicity campaign, which seeks to inform the public about the true nature of the wolf.

The project also organizes guided visits and educational days for schoolchildren, organized groups and the general public. Guided visits consist of tours along pedestrian trails which allow the public to observe and learn about wolves. These educational activities seek to spread correct information about the wolf and are of extreme importance to wolf conservation, by destroying the old myths and beliefs that motivate the wolf’s persecution.

Today, the survival of the Center is at risk and depends entirely on the purchase of this land. If we don’t reach the necessary target, we risk having to find another site to start all over again. Here we leave the link to the campaign.

http://igg.me/p/175073?a=848902

Any kind of help is welcomed. We are very grateful with your support and sharing.
If you need more information about our work and other projects, please contact us.

Best regards,

Isabel Ambrósio

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