Hugh Paxton’s Blog has declared today a “Shoes on” day here, both indoors and in my garden. Chang found a python yesterday as thick as his upper arm busily crushing a cat. He separated the combatants and given the python’s size opted to transport it to the govt snake people near Lumpini park for subsequent release in an area not inhabited by very small children (for reasons why, consult today’s earlier Hugh Paxton Blog post featuring Christian’s Namibian python photos). Shoes in yesterday’s case not necessary. Today they are. I’ve just met a young King Cobra sunning himself outside my office and flexing his unimpressive hood. Nobody here has the slightest intention of hurting the little fellow but despite his size he (or she) is still packing enough venom to KO a horse, so all in all best not to inadvertently tread on him/her. If you, too, have King Cobras in your garden, dawn and dusk are the key ‘be aware’ times but accidents can happen at any hour. You’ll probably know all that and are thinking ‘what a patronizing git’. I’ll continue in a similar vein! If you don’t know what snakes look like and live where they do, buy a book. Two years ago a Canadian neighbor beat a juvenile python to death in her kitchen under the impression that it was a cobra. Apart from breaking the law she also felt very bad about killing it when she learned the truth. She bought a book and hasn’t seen a snake since. But this is by the by. This post is about INTERPOL and Snow Leopards. Over to INTERPOL. Check the Snow Leopard Trust link for more details. Incidentally, my beloved daughter has just ‘adopted’ a snow leopard under a programme run by WWF and advertised ad nauseam (but effectively) on Cartoon Network or some other similar cable channel that drives me equally barmy. Three quid a month, a start up kit including photo and a cuddly toy, updates…that’s what she gets. That and three quid’s worth of car washing and other forced child labour to pay for her adoptee. Cheers!
INTERPOL Environmental Security Sub-Directorate [mailto:environmentalcrime]
Sent: Friday, May 08, 2015 12:54 AM
Subject: INTERPOL teams up with NGOs to protect snow leopards in Kyrgyzstan
Photograph source: Snow Leopard Trust
The INTERPOL Environmental Security Sub-Directorate is pleased to announce a joint initiative on snow leopard protection in Kyrgyzstan. INTERPOL will be working in close collaboration with the Snow Leopard Trust, the Snow Leopard Foundation in Kyrgyzstan and government agencies to enhance law enforcement responses to the poaching of snow leopards in Kyrgyzstan.
This initiative is part of the Citizen Ranger Wildlife Protection Programme (CRWPP) started by the Snow Leopard Trust in Kyrgyzstan in 2014. It will be supported by a grant from the Illegal Wildlife Trade Challenge Fund of the Government of the United Kingdom. (More information about this initiative can be found at: Snow Leopard Trust)
The snow leopard is an iconic Asian big cat species, found in fragmented habitats across 12 countries in Central and South Asia. Threatened mainly by the international trade, human conflict and habitat degradation, the snow leopard population is estimated to be between 4,000 and 6,000 individuals.
Enforcement efforts to curb the poaching and smuggling of snow leopards are greatly restricted for a range of reasons including inaccessible habitats, limited availability of resources and equipment and lack of well-trained personnel. Through this initiative, INTERPOL will focus on delivering quality training to rangers on investigative skills and standard enforcement techniques over a period of three years.
The initiative will be led by INTERPOL’s Project Predator, primarily supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Project Predator has been actively participating in international snow leopard conservation efforts for several years, including the drafting of the Law Enforcement Component in the Global Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection Program, 2013.
Environmental Crime Programme
Environmental Security Sub-Directorate
INTERPOL General Secretariat
200 Quai Charles de Gaulle
69006 Lyon, France