Aug 21, 2007

Killing Gorillas in the Mist

Illegal charcoal trade in the Congo's Virunga National Park is endangering Diane Fossey's gorillas in the mist. In this photo, park rangers are destroying a charcoal oven that was operating illegally in the park. The charcoal, produced by burning valuable and protected forests and worth $30 million U.S., is sent to neighboring Rwanda, which has banished the production of this substance within its borders. This means that the most fertile source for charcoal is the protected Virunga National Park in neighboring Congo. Just recently in July, eight rare mountain gorillas were shot dead. The rangers who protect the gorillas and their habitat are hounded by the traders, and many who protect the gorillas and park have been tortured.

One good bit of news: The five-month old baby of one of the murdered females was found dehydrated but alive.

For more on the story, click here and here.


Marius said...

This kind of heartless behavior is infuriating. It's adding insult to injury. These unfortunate animals have to deal with so much--destruction of their habitat, pollution, and now this. Very sad.

ArtfulSub said...

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Sigh. I just re-read Kahawa (see my Troll Poll post). Written in 1982, I think.

BigAssBelle said...

oh good lord. for charcoal. an expendable finite product. i cannot understand it. just can't.

delphine said...

I read the article in newsweek(?). It is so tragic and scary that people act this way.

Big Fella said...

Human greed, pure and simple. The same greed that will ultimately denude this planet and probably lead to human extinction.

There was a recent cover story in Newsweek about this, what was heartening, was the the local people revere these creatures, and the article tells how they carried them back to their village, as if they were departed family to bury them, and their despair over this.