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Celebrating World Wildlife Day and the work of World Land Trust
You might think today is simply the 3rd March, but it is in fact also World Wildlife Day; a day proclaimed by the United Nations to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild animals and plants. The theme for this year’s World Wildlife Day is “Forests and Livelihood: Sustaining People and Planet.”
With this in mind, it got us thinking about the amazing work that one of our nominated charities of the year, World Land Trust, do.
About World Land Trust
World Land Trust (WLT) is an international conservation charity that protects the most biologically significant and threatened habitats acre by acre.
Through a network of partner organisations around the world, WLT funds the creation of reserves; providing permanent protection for habitats and wildlife. Partnerships are developed with established and highly respected local organisations who engage support and commitment among the local community.
And the theme of this year’s World Wildlife Day really echoes what WLT have seen over decades of conservation action. After all, saving forests is saving the home of wildlife. So, we thought we’d share with you some videos of the places and species that WLT and its supporters are helping to make a difference for.
1. Cameroon: WLT appeal supporters unlock corridor for endangered gorillas
Sometimes 20 seconds is all it takes to understand the difference you can make for nature. And as brief as it may be, this video encapsulates better than most the impact that WLT supporters made in 2020. Filmed by WLT’s partner ERuDeF late last year, the silverback Western Lowland Gorilla you see here is one of 300 Critically Endangered individuals in Cameroon’s Deng Deng area; all safer from logging and poaching, thanks to the hundreds of people who donated last year to WLT’s ‘A Future for Gorillas’ campaign. Deforestation threatened to trap the gorillas and chimpanzees of this section of eastern Cameroon into a genetic island, but you intervened – and now ERuDeF can create a forest corridor.
2. Armenia: Double leopard sighting fuels conservation hopes
Looking for examples of exactly how impactful conservation action can be for endangered species? On World Wildlife Day, you needn’t look further than Armenia’s Caucasian Leopards. Fewer than 15 of these elusive cats are thought to be left in the country and yet as WLT recently wrote, two – including a possible female – were filmed in the space of a month at the Caucasus Wildlife Refuge managed by WLT’s Armenian partner FPWC. Rangers regard this double sighting as a “real hope” that leopard populations might recover in Armenia, and this was all thanks to WLT’s Action Fund supporters: it was their donations that made this success story possible, by funding expansions to the Refuge over the years.
3. Guatemala: Action Fund supporters team up to expand home of Jaguar
This wonderful video from WLT’s partner FUNDAECO comes with a story, and the story needs telling. For the Jaguar like the one you see here (filmed in Petén, Guatemala), impacts from human activities are nothing new. Farming, poaching, climate-driven droughts and wildfires – for long they have threatened the forest home of America’s largest cat, and last year they combined with COVID-19’s disruption to the local economy to bring more pressure to Jaguars. This is where WLT’s Action Fund comes in: supporters of the programme will be funding an expansion of FUNDAECO’s Laguna Grande Sarstún Reserve – and this video will tell you, better than words ever could, how much that will mean for Guatemala’s Jaguars.
4. Ecuador: Condor Iguiñaro’s recovery journey to soaring release
On a day that celebrates iconic wildlife, it’s hard not to think back to Iguiñaro. Last year, footage of this male Andean Condor flying free once more in Ecuador captured WLT’s imagination. Initially taken in with a gunshot wound to the chest, Iguiñaro’s journey to recovery in the hands of WLT’s partner Fundacion Jocotoco (FJ) and others culminated with a soaring moment: his release at the Chakana Reserve. The Andean Condor has the longest wingspan of any raptor in the world, and FJ rangers told WLT of the “hope and unity” they felt as they saw Iguiñaro stretch his wings, taking to the skies once more; a new chance for Ecuador’s national bird, a symbol of the impact conservation makes for individual species.
Support World Land Trust
The above are a small snapshot of some of the species World Land Trust and its supporters have been making a difference for. If you’d like to see more videos, check out WLT’s YouTube channel and learn more about the wonderful work they do and how to get involved via their website worldlandtrust.org.
Join in the conversation and follow the latest updates via social media using the #WorldWildlifeDay.
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