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Author Topic: Announcing our charity for EF22!  (Read 4016 times)

Cheetah

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Announcing our charity for EF22!
« on: 27.12.2015, 15:12:20 »

Eurofurence proudly presents our charity for 2016:

The Painted Dog Conservation!



Fighting to save the last of an endangered species, the Painted Dog Conservation is not only a worthy charity, but also one that desperately needs all the help we can give it.

You may already know the African wild dog, also known as the painted dog (Lycaon pictus). These beautiful hunting dogs (which are actually not dogs at all, but a completely different species) have splotched fur patterns and big round ears. What most people do not know is that the painted dog is sadly also one of the most endangered species of Africa, with fewer dogs left on the whole continent than there are furries at Anthrocon!

The painted dog is not closely related to other canids, having both a unique physique and social behaviour. They communicate with each other through high-pitched yips and hoots. Unlike other canid species, packs of painted dogs feed their pups first, and care for their sick and injured.

Sadly, myths and misunderstandings have given them a bad reputation, causing them to be persecuted by humans. Many more are killed on the road, get caught in snares set by poachers to get bushmeat, or catch diseases from domestic dogs. Their numbers have dwindled from 500.000 to less than 7000 over the past century.

The Painted Dog Conservation is devoted to the protection of the wild dogs and is active in Zimbabwe, where the local population of dogs is one of the last strongholds of the species. Their conservation methods help both the dogs and the local human population in a lasting way, making the future outlook of the species brighter.



These are a few of the ways the PDC helps the painted dog:
  • Their anti-poaching team patrols daily to directly protect the dogs and remove metal wire snares from the bush. They have picked up over 20.000 of them over the past years, saving the lives of thousands of animals.
  • The PDC puts special collars around the dogs' necks, which serve both as tracking devices for monitoring the packs as well as prevention against dogs being choked or cut to death by snares.
  • In the rehabilitation facility injured and orphaned wild dogs get nursed back to health so they can be released into the wild again.
  • The PDC organizes bush camps and conservation clubs for local children to learn about their country's wildlife. Ignorance and prejudice against the dogs are a huge problem, and this way the future generations learn to love and protect the dogs.
  • The PDC helps locals find better sources of food and income, so they do not have to hunt wildlife for food.
  • Road signs are put in place to alert drivers of crossing dogs, and packs that often use the main roads are given reflective collars. These measures have already cut the number of road kills in half.
  • In the arts centre, around 25 artists are at work every day turning snares that have been collected by the anti-poaching unit into beautiful wire sculptures. Of course, these sculptures will be for sale at the convention!

Though the Painted Dog Conservation's work is very successful, there are sadly still many setbacks. As recent as last November, elephant poachers have put cyanide in the wildlife's drinking water, killing an entire pack of 9 dogs and their 11 pups. The painted dog needs our help now more than ever!

As the con draws nearer we will keep you posted on how you can help the painted dogs. Of course the charity suiters, lottery booth and charity auction will be back, as well as many other fun events! Until then, you can follow the Painted Dog Conservation on Facebook or check out their website.
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yours,

Cheetah
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