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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
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Pocketmags Digital Magazines

Mass extinction

Kaya Purchase investigates why so many species are dying out

It’s no recent revelation that human beings are responsible for the extinction of wildlife. Since the dawn of civilisation we have contributed, whether directly or indirectly, to loss of species. Colonisation was culpable not just for human bloodshed and injustice, but also a wipe-out of animals in the pursuit of profitable resources. When European colonies invaded indigenous land, they disrupted sustainable practices that had been successful for generations – practices that were respectful of Mother Nature and grateful for all that she provides. In the Netflix documentary, When Two Worlds Collide, Alberto Pizango, president of the National Organisation for Native Amazon Peoples says: “My father always told me that the Earth was borrowed. It’s not given to you to do what you please with. When you borrow something you must care for it even more than its owner. We must hand it to future generations in even better condition.” This, of course, includes all the wild animals that live on that Earth, too.

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About Be Kind

Hello, I can remember a time, not so long ago, when most people I know were afraid of bees. Along with wasps, bees would create carnage when innocently passing through a garden BBQ or picnic, as people dashed to safety, terrified of the striped stinging machines. Now, it seems that everyone loves the humble bumble – they’re viewed with reverence and affection, and their cute and cuddly depiction is worn on necklaces and T-shirts across the country. To say it’s been a turnaround would be an understatement, but why has this happened? Our perception of bees has had to change, but only because their crucial population is under threat and their plight has been brought into the public’s consciousness. We know that we have to protect them at all costs, or it will mean terrible things for mankind. But, how many other animals do we currently disregard, that we’ll only appreciate when they’re in trouble? How many of us look more fondly upon walruses, following Attenborough’s devastating documentary? This month we want to shine a light on non-human animals – the heroes who keep our ecosystems balanced, who help teach our children about the planet, and who bring our communities together. We share this Earth with so many creatures, great and small, all of whom are vital to our existence. But we need to begin to respect and care for them now, not just when the odds are against them. Enjoy the issue, Phillipa Editor