The ground squirrel is as cute to us humans as any species of squirrels with their fast pace an entertaining antics. But their lives are faced with the exact same challenges as all life, and they have no clue as to what our view of cute is.

This is such a huge misconception and why it is possible to fund one of the most profitable illegal trades in the world. Only drugs, weapons and human trafficing generate more revenue.

The trade in pets is fueled by an insatiable need of something cute at home with the misconception that this is beneficial to the animal. Countless selfies with cute and cuddly looking wild animals is giving the false idea that this is good for the animal. Sadly people receive tons of likes and praise for the selfie and this fuels the need to seek out wild animals in captivity that are exploited just for our selfish needs. Keeping wild animals for pets is causing the extinction at a breath neck pace.
If that is not enough entitlement to exploit anything wild based on ancient Asian traditional medicine, and today scientifically disproved to have any effect, is killing wild species at such a speed that regions are emptied before conservation efforts can be put into action.

While traveling in New Zealand a Chinese came out the blue and asked my friend if he is Indian. As he confirms, he is asked if he can sell tiger parts!! We were stunned wildlife traffickers do this so openly, but it is a symptom of how profitable it is and how most get away with it.

Imagine what incredible progress on protection could be achieved if China utilized their technology to monitor wildlife trafficking the way they do on their population. They can find a single individual anywhere in China within minutes!

  • Aperture: ƒ/7.1
  • Camera: NIKON D5
  • Focal length: 500mm
  • ISO: 640
  • Shutter speed: 1/1000 s

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