At the recently concluded 17th meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) Conference of the Parties (CoP17) - the largest meeting of its kind ever held - IUCN helped inform a number of landmark decisions on regulating sustainable and legal trade.
As of this writing, Taiji, Japan remains ground zero for the capture and distribution of wild dolphins to amusement parks, dolphinariums, and swim-with-dolphin programs worldwide, fetching as much as $200,000 for a trained dolphin.
There seem to be three species that deserve our attention right now, the three pillars of Africa: lions, elephants and rhinos. Each is in trouble. Next week we hope that sanity, and not politics, will prevail. I wonder if this age of consuming of wildlife will ever be over.
I was a child of the early 1980s. Looking back, perhaps with a certain ethereal fondness, it seemed like life was simpler, values were different, people were more in tune with their surroundings; and certainly, more in-tune with each other (no cell phones here!).