Ethiopian Press Agency (Addis Ababa)

Ethiopia: Rescuing Wildlife in Ethiopia - Call of the Day

A year before, 'Denbel', 'Timket' and 'Arpia' were families of cheetah which were susceptible to extinction from the nation, particularly Somali State following the unlawful acts of illegal hunters.

These hunters have put the cheetah species into big containers to easily handle and transfer from Ethiopia to other places through the former's boundary. Recently, these illegal hunters were put under control due to police effort at the place not far from the boundary.

What these hunters have done is they snatch these cheetahs from their mothers at their early days. The hunters had prepared the wild animals for illegal trade before the police arrested them. And then, the police threw them to jail for further investigation. The ethiopian wildlife Conservation Authority (EWCA) received those cheetahs and transferred them to International Wild Animals Conservation Agency temporary shelter which is found in 'Holeta' Ethiopia.

The three cheetahs are getting the necessary treatment from the agency, and they can easily recover to the condition they were before. For example, the agency feeds milk using udder like human being. And they are fed with chopped meat when they grow up. . And now they are becoming young ones and start attracting tourists.'Dolo' and 'fisso' are lions which are found in Somali state too. The rescuers said that the male lion 'Dolo' was in a harsh situation. His eyes do not see clearly. But after the conservation, his body is recovering. The four legs of 'Sofi' also do not help her to jump mountains, rivers. They are are also incapable of climbing hill and slopes. Currently, she has led comfortable life. She has slpet peacefully without any disruption.

As to Atenafu Dangachew, after preservation, the lions are becoming healthy. The environment is free from involvement of human beings and covered with green plants. This situation has helped the wild animals breath peacefully, in addition to this, the zoo provided them with the capacity to return to the previous life style.

Holeta city is located some 30 kms away from Addis. The city comprises a densely populated woodland. And Holeta Wildlife Preservation is found at the centre of these woodland. The agency lies on a 77 hectares acre of land.

"At present six lions, five cheetahs, three chilada baboons, five ordinary specious of baboons and 20 tortoises are found in the zoo,"said Ethiopian Born free foundation representative, Mr. Stevena Brand.

In cooperation with international agencies and Ethiopian wildlife conservation authority, the agency has been collecting wild animals which are found in the hands of individuals and conserve them in a sustainable way.

In other countries such a wildlife control and conservation is common, Says, Mr. Stevena Brand. He also indicated that, after the animals come out of their suffering and plight, the agency has done all its best to help them return to the previous life style by keeping them well in the existing environment.

According to Ethiopian law, illegal wild animals hunting, selling and transferring is a crime. But still these endemic wild animals are suffering from the unlawful acts of the aforesaid illegal hunters or irresponsible individuals who would like to amass undeserved profit at the expense of these precious wild animals.

The International Wild Animals Conservation Agency formaulated an action plan to tame wild life from illegal venders in cooperation with Ethiopian wild life conservation authority and other international organizations, as well.

Yeneneh Teka, wild life development and conservation Director with the EWCA's on his part said that Ethiopia designed an action plan that enables it to develop and preserve the wealth of wild animals. Apart from ensuring the existence of carnivorous wild animals, the programme guarantees for sustainable tourism potential in the country.

The programme is particularly focused on carnivorous wild animals species like lions, wolves, cheetahs and will serve for ten consecutive years. It also pointed out options that help bring about change each year and enables the nation to put sectors programme into practice. The programme would be practical starting from this budget year.

According to him, though the authority has received wild life, it doesn't have place to well protect them. As a result, the life of animals is exposed to unfavourable circumstances.

As established a temporary shelter to endemic and endangered wild animals before three years, the place is becoming necessary to protect wild animals in a sustainable way. In addition to this, the place has helped the nation meet the threat of vanishing of wild animals from the country, " he added.

In conjunction with the Federal Democratic Government of Ethiopia Wildlife Conservation Authority, Born Free Foundation and Born Free USA are developing plans to construct a Wildlife Rescue, Conservation and Education Centre 30kms away from Ethiopia's capital----Addis Ababa.

Born Free will aim at producing rehabilitation facilities or lifetime care for wild animals confiscated from illegal trade and ownership as much as space, finance and expertise allow. At present, if the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority discovers an illegally held animal, it is unable to confiscate since there is no place suitable for the animals to take care of them.

There is also a zoo in Addis Ababa which shelters over 20 lions. As a symbol of Ethiopia, the lion is reserved. But loins are reserved in a subsatandard zoo with concrete floors, and small bared areas with no required facility. The Centre which Born Free has planned to set up is believd to offer an opportunity to these lions to live in large, grassy and naturalistic enclosures, giving them the respect and comfort they deserve.

In addition to providing rescued animals with refuge shelter, Born Free will incorporate Conservation and Education within the Centre's core principles._

The Centre will also provide capacity building for the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority and Regional Wildlife teams including training and helping them develop public awareness campaigns, along with provision of enclosures for confiscated animals. The Centre will provide a veterinary clinic where injured wildlife can be treated before sent to the wild. In conjunction with Oxford University's Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU), one of the first scientific research programmes planned to conduct a National Large Carnivore Survey with a view to identifying key areas for protection and target hotspots of carnivore-human conflict.

An environmental education centre and holistic educational programmes will offer both 'outreach' (taking environmental education classes to schools) and 'centre-based' programmes for schools, nature clubs, colleges and universities.

Situated on an impressive natural, part-wooded site of 77.489 hectares, the Centre will also present the natural and cultural heritage of Ethiopia, and offer a truly memorable and educational experience for the population of Addis Ababa and the Regions as well as international visitors.

Born Free Ethiopia became a legally registered non-governmental organization (NGO)in Ethiopia on December 10th 2007.

From small beginnings, the Born Free Foundation has grown into a global force for wildlife. But a personal passion for wild animals and desire for positive change remain at our heart. Born Free is not a big anonymous organization, but a family of like-minded people who share the same goals. The agency works to prevent individual animal suffering, protect threatened species and keep wildlife in the wild separated from other animals including human beings. .

Born free emergency teams rescue vulnerable animals from appalling lives of misery in tiny cages and give them lifetime care at spacious sanctuaries.The agency saves orphaned big cats, great apes and elephants and provides their food and care.

As human populations expand, wildlife comes under increasing threat. Born Free is determined to try to halt the race to extinction by protecting rare species in their natural habitat. Working with local communities, the agency finds compassionate solutions so people and wildlife can live together. Educational activities inspire young and old alike to respect the wild.

The agency has high-profile campaigns taking effective action and provide animals with a voice.

It aptures the public imagination, change attitudes, inform and persuade decision-makers, and get results. When it is fighting for the ivory trade and 'sport' hunting, the agency opposes the act of killing wild animals for 'bush meat', or challenging the exploitation of wild animals in zoos and circuses. Hence, Born Free has been at the front line in taking steps against the illegal actiong done on wildlife.

The_major concern of the international projects is devoted to animal welfare, conservation and education, and protect lions, elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees, tigers, polar bears, wolves, dolphins, turtles, sharks and lots more.

To sum up, wildlife are wealth of the society. So, all stakeholders can rescue them from illegal hunters. On the other hand, Ethiopian Wildlife and Conservation Authority should encourage the task of organizations like Born free. Besides , the authority should develop its capacity to do so.

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