In this day and age, with knowledge literally at our fingertips, ignorance is unacceptable. Even more unacceptable is ignorance of specialist organisations that seem to not know much about what they’re working to protect. There are HUNDREDS, if not thousands, of resources you can use to educate yourself on African conservation and wildlife.
To clarify – this is about those who have access to information, those that received above average education (by African standards), those who currently run the conservation game in Africa. I am not talking about the bog-standard Banda, Takudzwa, Ethel or Celtel.
Sure, you may not know what the Latin name for the Scottish rattle tree (Amblygonocarpus andongensis fyi), but please don’t run around saying, publicising, endorsing or worse, BELIEVING, utter bollocks like “elephant trunks have over 100,000 muscles“. I received a good education in this sort of stuff so I’m fortunate enough to know the correct answer to the question “How many muscles are there in the trunk of an elephant?”:
Not 1, not 2, not 3, BUT NINE MUSCLES!!
Here are my reasons for being ticked off:
- Save the Elephants – an international elephant conservation organisation – believes, and even posts on social media, that there are over 100,000 muscles in the elephant trunk. I don’t know about you but if I had an organisation focused on a couple of species, I’d make damn sure I had ALL THE FACTS and if I didn’t have ALL THE FACTS, I’d keep my mouth shut and social media quiet about those things. But that’s just me.
- 17 individual conservation and elephant conservation organisations in/working in Africa endorsed a wee children’s packet (join the dots, word search, fun facts, etc.) on elephants that included this (which is cropped to preserve the identity of the packet because it’s receiving a lot of publicity and I’d hate to paint an unjust picture of them)
- Does make me a little sceptical about what these organisations/people do actually know…
Some of those 17 organisations are:
- Game Rangers International (Zambia)
- Lilongwe Wildlife Trust (Malawi)
- African Parks (all over)
- Endangered Wildlife Trust (all over)
- Elephants alive! (S.A., Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique)
- PAMS Foundation (Tanzania)
- Big Life Foundation (all over)
- Conservation South Luangwa (Zambia)
- Save the Elephants (all over)
- Wildlife Direct (Kenya)
- Kasungu Elephants.org (Malawi)
- SATIB Conservation Trust (all over)