One of the hardest parts of being an educated race (well, most of us) is the fact we can learn so much about the world. Given the way we live, we do immense damage to other species and have effectively ruined parts of the world’ eco-system by our own excesses and way. This can lead to horrifying stories of environmental decline, and also stories of animals which are dying out due to the things we do.
A story which became prominent news recently was the death of the last ever male Northern White Rhino. A photographer snapped the creature in its last moments, as a man stands over it trying to keep it calm and help it through these painful moments.
The rhino, named Sudan, passed on at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya. He was looked after by a loving team who did everything they could for it. Now at a good age, though, the rhino was not long for this world and passed on. This breed of rhino doesn’t often live for long, but Sudan was 45 – a strong, healthy and happy life by all accounts. While his death was not due to poaching, illness or anything human-caused, its species has definitely suffered at the hands of humanity in the past.
As the last remaining male Northern White Rhinoceros, Sudan was a bit of a personality on the web. People knew for a while that he was the last and that he was getting on in age. With no other rhinos capable of being produced, he was the last of a species which was dying out at a rapid and concerning rate.
Sadly, the long-term plan to try and help the species remain and avoid extinction failed in the harshest way.
The End of a Species
In the last 00s, a Czech zoo released what few rhinos they had into the Kenyan wilds again. Airlifted from the Czech Republic, they were flown over in a last-ditch attempt to stop the species from dying out. At that time, just eight existed – now, none do.
The hope was that being back in their natural clime would help them to be more inclined to breed and to try continue their species. The other hope was to cross-breed them with the Southern White Rhino in a bid to try and preserve their genes – even this failed.
Its time, with this story, to act. To stop messing around. Plains animals, many of them including the great elephant, are at the risk of being wiped out in our lifetime. While the more heartless crow “natural selection”, there is nothing natural about using firepower to wipe out these creatures of majesty.
While poor Sudan may have enjoyed a wonderful life that was richer than the wild versions of his species who were poached, he is the last of his species. We must act – now – before we have to cover more species being wiped out due to human actions that could so easily be stopped and halted.
Farwell, Sudan – and your wonderful kind.