What is World Wildlife Day All About?
World Wildlife Day was officially made a global holiday on December 20th, 2013 when UNGA (the United Nations General Assembly) dedicated March 3rd as a day of signature of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Since then, this day is to be dedicated to raising awareness of the conservation of wild animals and plants.
The UNGA resolution reaffirms the value of wildlife and its contributions to ecology, genetics, the economy, science and education, culture and recreation, human well-being, etc. This observance is to recognize the importance of wildlife and habitats in our everyday lives.
Wildlife impacts us in many ways. The benefits of investing in conservation might not be obvious at first, but they are often surprisingly large and wide-ranging. We all enjoy many benefits from nature, so this shouldn’t cost us much.
The Importance of Wildlife Conservation
We all enjoy many benefits from nature, so this shouldn’t cost us much. Conservation has economic benefits. It helps sustain fisheries worth more than US$70 billion and maintains the supply of timber worth nearly US$400 billion.
Sustainable tourism is said to provide work for approximately one in ten people around the world. It is also home to about three million species yet to be explored and preserved by scientists, which uses valuable biological resources.
Conservation is also good for us. We all benefit from healthy ecosystems, with their ability to purify water, sequester carbon, mitigate climate change, and provide food. We can even improve our mental health through contact with nature.
Conservation needs to be built at every level—corporate, national, and global—and in every sector—natural resource management (NRM), infrastructure development (sometimes called infrastructure-conservation), tourism, education, healthcare, and social services.
With a growing world population, it is estimated that by 2050, we will need 60 percent more food, 45 percent more energy, and 30 percent more water. If we do not conserve our natural resources then the results could be disastrous for humanity.
The way we live can have a huge effect on natural resources. To protect our environment, we must be aware of the effect our lifestyle has on wildlife and habitats.
The Theme of This Year’s World Wildlife Day
This year this day will be colored with the theme “Partnerships for Wildlife Conservation”.
World wildlife day can be celebrated by being part of an event hosted by your local zoo, research center, or animal sanctuary. Anybody who can, can donate, either financially or with their time, to a wild-animal shelter.
Because of this year’s theme, you can try to be a wildlife conservation partner in the following ways:
One way to conserve wildlife is by reducing human activity in natural habitats. For example, avoiding activities such as off-roading or motorized boating helps reduce disturbance of plants and animals in their natural environment. It is also important to be mindful of littering: trash left behind can harm both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
Supporting organizations dedicated to conservation efforts is another effective way that individuals can contribute towards preserving wildlife. Donating and volunteering for organizations such as the World Wildlife Fund or wildlife sanctuaries across the world like the Rhino Orphanage in South Africa are both excellent ways to help support conservation efforts. Additionally, avoiding buying products made from wild animal parts is an important step in taking action against illegal poaching and trafficking.
Finally, world leaders can also play a major role in promoting environmental conservation by implementing strong laws that crack down on those who violate wildlife protection regulations. By enacting stricter laws, world leaders can make a significant impact in protecting endangered species against exploitation and habitat destruction.
On this World Wildlife Day, let us all take actions towards preserving our planet’s biodiversity for future generations to enjoy! Through collective action, we can ensure that today’s wildlife will continue to thrive for many years to come.
So what are you doing to commemorate World Wildlife Day? Share your ideas and images with us on our I Love Veterinary Facebook and Instagram pages with the hashtag #WWD2023 in celebration of a milestone 50 years!
Happy World Wildlife Day!
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