Re: NANFA-- Collecting ethics

Steffen Hellner (
Tue, 13 Jan 2004 12:57:41 +0100


if you think of a horse with a broken leg which had to be shot by the vet,
who really killed it, the rider or the vet?

Similar with this bird. It was brought to extinction by whalers, the
collector only took the last. These would surely be grabbed by others and
lost for science anyway. Those were different times. The last Dodo is in an
museum so is the last Tasmanian Wolf. Without taking it, it would have ended
in a stomach. Which is better if both is sad enough? The point is not to
bring species to that edge. We live in the 21st century, in the centuries
before people didn4t think much about extinction. Mankind was above
everything. Now we have change to that we are on top but part of the big

What about the blue Spix-parrot (Cyanopsittaca spixi). Lost in the wild but
stable reproducing groups at private enthusiasts and in parks. From these
additional specimen can support the last males in the wild to build up a new
population. Thsi species was close to extinction by destruction of habitat,
the last pairs were illegally collected from the wild. This is not right and
I don4t support it. On the other hand, the last pairs would be dead as well
today if not taken. But this should have happened by legal authorities, of
course. When a species is that much down, captive reproduction to me is the
only way to preserve it. At least in captivity if not possible in the wild.
Thus many species have already being re-introduced, e.g. the european bison
(Wisent), the white Oryx, the european lynx a.s.o.

We all have to be aware that many species of "big game" will only have a
chance in human care or in highly separated refuges such as islands (komodo
dragon): the rhinoceros, all big cats (most of all tiger, leopard, cheetah,
and even lion), wild cattle in SEA, . Guess what will happen to the
cougar/silver lion after one has killed a man in the USA. This species
cannot survive where humans are. And we are mostly everywhere. That4s one of
the main problems to me.

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