Every African Elephant Lost Within 20 Years?

Every African Elephant Lost Within 20 Years?

Wild Elephants of Mole National Park, Ghana - Photo: Kim Clune

Wild Elephants of Mole National Park, Ghana, July 27, 2008 – Photo: Kim Clune

One of my life’s most magical moments was watching a family of four wild African elephants emerge from Mole National Forest for a swim. Mole refuge spans 3000 square miles but, as large and mostly untouched by humans as this special place is, poaching elephants for ivory is still greatly feared. You Can Help These Elephants.

Humane Society International shared a startling fact last week.

Every single day, 100 African elephants are slaughtered for their tusks. If current poaching rates continue, this beloved animal will be gone forever in the next 20 years.

Being born a majestic elephant is an ill fate indeed. Whether captured for carnival cruelty, limited to life in a zoo, or shot dead to make souvenir trinkets, our human impact has made this world a deadly place for these magnificent and emotional beings.

Good News on the African Elephant Horizon

In November of 2013, the U.S. government crushed more than five tons of its confiscated ivory stockpile. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe said:

We’re doing this to send a signal to the world that we need to crush the illegal trade in ivory and wildlife products in general.

Weeks later, China, the world’s largest market for elephant products, followed suit by publicly crushing six tons of confiscated ivory, an equivalent to 2,000 poached elephants. While there are plenty of issues still as stake, like China’s still legal ivory trade, this is an important first step.

Keep the Momentum Going in Hong Kong!

Join forces with Humane Society International. Urge the Hong Kong government to destroy the ivory it has confiscated.

It must join the U.S. and China in sending a message to poachers and traffickers that their days of profiting from killing are coming to an end.

Sign the Petition!

Humane Society International - Destroy Hong Kong’s Ivory Stockpile!

Petition Text: African elephant poaching has reached critical levels. With 100 elephants being killed every single day and tons of illegally shipped ivory being seized on an almost monthly basis, urgent action is needed to put an end to this crisis.

Hong Kong needs to join other governments — including those of China, the Philippines, and the United States — in taking meaningful action to protect elephants by destroying its stockpile of confiscated ivory.

This important step would highlight the plight of the tens of thousands of elephants at risk of being wiped out by greed. I urge you to destroy the Hong Kong government’s stockpile to help save these majestic animals before it is too late.

Thank you for caring about wild elephants like the ones I met in Ghana. 

Wild Elephants of Mole National Park, Ghana, July 27, 2008 - Photo: Kim Clune

Kim Clune with a Park Ranger and Wild Elephants of Mole National Park,
Ghana, July 27, 2008

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If Two Black Bears Fornicate on the Front Lawn…

If Two Black Bears Fornicate on the Front Lawn…

East Nassau Bear

So many bad “bare bears” jokes could go with this bad video… but this truly happened one dark and rainy June night at our cabin in the woods.

My neighbor called to say two black bears were lumbering up our road. I grabbed the camera. As I pointed in the anticipated direction of sight, the bears took a detour and marched up to the house. What happened next was truly remarkable. “The he” nearly wined and dined “the she” on our patio furniture and they trotted off into the shadows for some large lovin’.

My husband called the neighbors to take up collection – for a room. We’ll be planning the cub shower next.

Let the jokes begin. So how would you finish this line?

If two black bears fornicate on the front lawn, would anybody…

The Moustachioed Wildlife of May!

The Moustachioed Wildlife of May!

Straw Man Mustache

Move over, Movember. You’ve got nothing on May’s wild mustaches sported by squirrels, phoebes, robins and tree swallows!

But if Movember is when men grow and women support a Mo (moustache) to become walking, talking billboards for prostate and testicular cancer initiatives, what’s the wildlife rallying for? Do we call this Moy or is next month Mune?

We’ve named the magnificent moustachios seen on Curtis Hill. Share your own ideas below!

1.) Social Climber

Social Climber Moustache

2.) “Can’t Touch This” Stache

Cant Touch This Stache

3.) The Streamer

The Streamer Moustache

4.) The Last Straw

The Last Strand Stache

5.) The Papa

The Papa Stache

6.) The Standup Stache

The Standup Stache

7.) The Grasshopper

The Grasshopper Moustache

8.) The Getaway

The Getaway Stache


Black Bear Signals End of Bird Feeding Season

Black Bear Signals End of Bird Feeding Season

Jed meets Bear

When we came home from vacation on Sunday, to our delight, spring had fully sprung. Missing crocus season entirely, we stepped off the plane straight into full blooming daffodils. Willows leafed out in tender green waves. Red maples reached out their tiny leaves in search of the sun’s warmth. And our resident bear came out of hibernation before we emptied the last inch of winter bird seed from the storage can.

Bear MessageWe had a heads up from the house sitter, mind you, and we would have emptied the last of the seed upon coming home had I not been plagued with a medical distraction. Having gained 12 pounds worth of edema in my legs, I was busy limping through 7 doctors’ consults, from ruling out blood clots to detecting what is likely a strange side effect of taking Celebrex. (Thank goodness it wasn’t the salt in the Margaritas! That, I couldn’t live with.)

Exhausted from it all, Tim and I hit the pillow early and hard by Wednesday. We craved a solid night’s sleep, but it was not to come.


Portrait of a Passing Porcupine

Portrait of a Passing Porcupine

Our story left off with Jeannette, the wildlife rehabilitator, whisking our suddenly struggling porcupine down the hill for emergency veterinary care. Once in the compassionate care of Joyce, a vet technician in Guilderland, the ticks (a sign of a compromised immune system) were carefully removed from our girl’s face. She also received fluids, antibiotics and pain medication. With no concrete determinations that night, Jeanette wrote, “Joyce and I will do absolutely anything for her if the vet feels she has any chance of recovery.”