An elephant in Ondo State, Nigeria? How did it get there?
The reactions we got when we put up this story on instagram proved to us that so many Nigerians are unaware of the vast wildlife we have in this country. The presence of an elephant in Janiyi Camp, Idanre, Ondo State came as a shock to most people. Who put the elephant there? Do we have elephants in Ondo State? Where some of the questions we got.
RECENT ELEPHANT KILLING
We were hoping the story of Ajaja was false. We’ve heard one too many wild life killings in the past 3 years, from the chimpanzee family in Delta State to the albino Hippopotamus in Gombe state.
Ajaja has become a ‘popular’ hunter in his community. He was pictured posing by an elephant he killed at Janiyi Camp in Idanre, Ondo State on Sunday.
The elephant was said to have been destroying farmers’ crops in the area, hence the ‘hunt and kill’ mission of the poor gentle huge creature by the hunter. While some say it outright barbaric and call Ajaja ignorant , others think it’s not that serious and the man was trying to “defend himself”. Check out some reactions from the internet sphere:
And the idiot is feeling as if he's conquered the world.😒😒😒
— Blueprint™ (@haji_musteey) March 8, 2018
What happened here is illegal. Don’t encourage this kind of destruction. Killing an endangered species is illegal in Nigeria. Imagine is this is kept in a zoo for recreational and educational purposes. This is painful to see
— Esther Agbarakwe (@estherclimate) March 8, 2018
Ignorance is not an excuse. We should protect our wildlife as well to balance the ecosystem @_SegunOyedepo
— Rukayat Odebiyi (@Ruqie) March 8, 2018
In jail for what? Our people are dying and we want to pretend to care more about animals?
I will never ever pretend to care for animals more than Africans. Esp cos i know how much money is wasted on the creatures while our people sleep hungry
— 🏳️🌈 Travel Fairy 🇿🇦 (@TheSoloWandera) March 8, 2018
WHY WILDLIFE CONSERVATION?
Elephants are fascinating creatures and one of the most intelligent creatures in the world. They have the most retentive memories and they always say, an elephant never forgets. Conserving them contributes greatly to the ecosystem.
Biodiversity is main reason why we should conserve wildlife . Every creature has one or two roles to play in promoting biodiversity an ecosystem. For an ecosystem to be healthy and functional, biodiversity is a necessity. When we keep killing wildlife in their original habitats, the number of these species reduce which gradually affect the ecosystem negatively and cause imbalance in functionality.
Also, we human beings can gain a lot of benefits from wildlife. As we learn from our fellow human beings, we can also study and learn from animals. In the world today, there are various diseases that only chemicals, oils etc from wildlife can cure. Killing these special species makes it difficult to derive many benefits from them. And without our knowledge, they are going to extinction.
Another reason why we should conserve wildlife is for recreation. Conserving them for tourists to see stand to fetch the society more funds. A standard wildlife conservation center attracts people from both far and new. For instance, many people travel from all over to Kenya to visit the wildlife center. This alone has improved the tourism sector and boost economy in the country.
HOW TO CONSERVE WILDLIFE
We can try our best to conserve wildlife by all means. Lack of Ignorance is one of the things that leaves us behind other nations. We ignore the important things just because we want to satisfy the stomach. As a way of conservation wildlife, we can create awareness. So doing, people see the importance of keeping wildlife. Also, the government and individuals can enlighten the hunters about importance of keeping animals around.
One of the major threat wildlife face is destruction of their habitats. We can also play our part by ensuring we protect the habitats of these animals around us.
The government at all levels should set up regulatory bodies that will see to the end of wildlife killing. Also they should implement laws that people can follow and make sure any defaulter faces the law.
Our role as knowledgeable people is to educate locals the best way we can on the benefits of wildlife conservation and ensure to give a general tourism education. Its really that simple. Whenever you are on a private or group tour, make an effort to educate locals on the benefits of tourism.
Teach them the importance of sustainable tourism and wild life conservation. Put things into perspective and let them know how other countries are profiting immensely from the tourism sector. It’s important they understand the benefits of tourism and the impact in their society.
If other countries we visit for wildlife tours kill their animals for food the way our famous Ajala and other hunters here in Nigeria do, then what’s there to see. They see the benefits of wildlife in their environment, hence the conversation.We can’t really boost of a good wildlife conservation center in Nigeria. Even if we do, how many animals do we have there. What other ways do you think wildlife can be conserved?