Today marks the first ever World Wildlife Day, and is an opportunity to celebrate the many beautiful and varied forms of wild fauna and flora, as well as to raise awareness of the multitude of benefits that conservation provides to people and planet.
World Wildlife Day was proclaimed by the United Nations during the 68th session of the General Assembly and marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1973, which plays an important role in ensuring that international trade in wildlife parts and products does not threaten the survival of plant or animal species.
"While the threats to wildlife are great, we can reduce them through our collective efforts. On this inaugural World Wildlife Day, I urge all sectors of society to end illegal wildlife trafficking and commit to trading and using wild plants and animals sustainably and equitably" Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Here at Synchronicity Earth we though what better way to celebrate World Wildlife Day than with a few recent success stories from the world of biodiversity conservation!
- One of our partners, Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, has recently informed us of the fantastic news that there are now 48 Madagascan pochards in captivity, successfully breeding! They are building up a stock of birds ready for release, hopefully sometime in 2015
- Bat numbers in Europe increased more than 40% between 1993 and 2011, according to a new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) which considers the state of bat populations across a number of European countries.
- In the past 50 years we have seen a wildlife comeback in Europe - 37 European mammal and bird species have increased in numbers including the brown bear, grey seal and European beaver and bison; as well as the barnacle goose, white-headed duck and the saker falcon.
- Together with Rainforest Trust, Global Wildlife Conservation and the Andrew Sabin Family Foundation, a Synchronicity Earth partner - the Amphibian Survival Alliance (ASA) has announced a million dollar fund – called the Leapfrog Conservation Fund – this fund is already working to protect and manage key habitats for frogs, salamanders, caecilians and many other species in the Philippines and will expand over the coming year.
- A two-day symposium on Wildlife Trafficking was held in London, resulting in new commitments from political leaders, increased public awareness and engagement and a collaborative effort between conservation NGOs and others. It is hoped that this will translate into effective action and prevent the loss of already globally threatened species as a result of wildlife trafficking.
Many of the worlds’ species are facing threats from habitat destruction for large dams, agribusiness and logging, as well as overfishing and by-catch in the marine sector. Our ecosystem portfolios focus on tackling these threats by supporting organisations and individuals using complimentary interventions and innovative techniques. Already, we have seen some significant progress, and you can find more information about our partners and the work they are undertaking here.
And finally, we have recently been able to increase funding to our species portfolio and are delighted to be scaling-up the number of projects and organisations we are supporting. More details coming soon so please keep checking our website and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.