Sometimes I think I should not open the paper. This morning, in the Starbucks, I open the Financial section of the "National Post". There is a large picture of a Beaver.
A headline happily announces that the "fur trade is making a comeback"
Inside, on pages 6 and 7, there is more bad news. The article is written by a Joe O'Connor. He does not take sides. A lot of work, with photos and charts has been done to support the article.
Some figures for 2010; Killed for their skins;
259 Polar Bears, 2,867 Wolves, 7,490 Lynx, 139,220 Beaver, 92,959 Marten, 16,373 Fisher, 9,405 Otter. That's a small part of the list.
Each animal's skin [a pelt] has a value. For example, a Lynx pelt is $97.34. Have you seen a Lynx? The Canada Lynx
has a light grey, spotted coat, very thick in the cold winters. It has very large paws to support its weight on snow. The ears are tufted. Its prey is usually the snowshoe hare. The numbers of Lynx vary with the population of its prey. There are other species
of Lynx in Europe and southwest America. It became extinct in many regions, killed off by hunting and loss of habitat.
Unthinkably, in 2010, 259 Polar Bears became decorations for someone's home or a shopping mall.
Why has this activity gained
new life? Canadians do not buy fur. After we almost exterminated the beaver [to make hats] there was a dawning of concern, respect and the intellect among Canadian consumers. It became a "bad thing" to be seen wearing fur.
Apparently, what's happened,
is that there is a new consumer on the block, ready to lay down the big dollar for Canadian fur. They especially like the Polar Bear.
Its China again. Apparently not satisfied with pushing the Black Rhinoceros and the Tiger to the brink of extinction
[horns and bone, aphrodisiacs] now its the "in" thing to have a taxidermist prepare a Polar Bear in fierce pose and use it as a business attractant or in your home as a status symbol.
But let's not be too hard on the Chinese. We are providing the goods.
Canadians are responsible for protection of our own wildlife. Permitting the killing of 139,000 Beavers for their fur [an example] is nothing to do with protection.
This is about money [as usual]. Canadian fur exports topped $706-million in 2012. Permission
to kill is sold by government. Our government is responsible. They give license, they allow.
Sorry, government, The great years of the Fur trade are over. The Hudsons Bay Company is kaput. The Voyageurs and the Fur Wars of Samuel de Champlain are history.
Let's do some real wildlife management. European migrants to Canada have done enough damage. Lets get back on the right path.
This killing of the fur bearing animals of our northern forests and subsequent selling to a foreign market leads me to some
other thoughts. As you know, if you look at other pages of this website, I provide sex for money. Our government wants to keep laws in place which threaten this activity. The prevailing attitude of the majority of the population is that sex for money is "bad"
on religious or moral grounds.
I would like to give you these words to think about.
Our government allows the killing and selling of the skins of our wildlife to a foreign market. The Chinese are the "Johns". Our government is the "pimp". The
whole process of money for skins is "prostitution".
In my job, no precious life is sacrificed.
Let our stodgy, hypocritical government focus their law-making on activities that really need to be stopped. The fur trade is one of these.
the Knowledge Network, Channel 5, I often see a one-hour show,"Hope for Wildlife". This is a small place in Nova Scotia where people bring animals they have found which seem to be injured or sick. The volunteer staff does their best to help and return to the
wild. They treat every small bird or mammal that is brought to them, from mouse to Moose calf. They cannot always save, but they give it their best shot. I see compassion and tenderness on display. I see joy and satisfaction on the faces of staff when they
watch the seal pup swim away, the Eagle fly again and the Badger returns to the bush.
Hey, Government, you want to do good thing for a change? Help places like this.