NIKELA asks for Photos not Donations this Holiday Season

Wildlife scavenger hunt for products made from horn, skin, bone, fur, feathers of endangered and threatened wildlife species.

 

 

It’s the season when every nonprofit organization and cause is screaming “donate”, to stop this and change that… and empty your already low pocket book.

At NIKELA we’re asking you to share photos. No, not photos of your family, friends or dog, but of items you see in boutiques, antique malls, curio shops, flea markets, open markets and specialty stores.

According to US Secretary Hillary Clinton (in her November address to the State Department on the impact of the illegal wildlife trade) she stated that the United States ranks second in the purchase of goods that are made from products that are illegally acquired and sold… namely from the wildlife trafficking industry (which is now the third largest illegal industry right behind guns and drugs.)

To respond to Secretary Clinton’s call to get involved and collaborate to stop the purging of our forests and plains NIKELA is launching a Wildlife Scavenger Hunt. And we invite you to participate.

Via the Facebook page, “STOP it SNAP it and Save Wildlife” (we will be adding Instagram and Flickr) we hope to spread awareness and stop the buying of products made from wild animal parts.

It all started when I was in one of these popular antique malls in a small Texas town. “Wow, that’s pretty!” I caught myself saying as I stopped to look at some silver jewelry made with snake skin. Then it hit me, a living creature died to make this. This living creature may well have been stolen out of a forest somewhere and illegally traded, possibly totally unbeknown to the designer. This needed to stop!

The objective of the Wildlife Trafficking Scavenger Hunt (STOP it SNAP it and Save Wildlife) is to spread awareness GLOBALLY as to how we (as humans in general) inadvertently buy and consume products that harm wildlife.

The premise is that most people once aware will change their buying habits. These are the people we want to reach where ever in the world they might be. Peter Knights Executive Director of WildAid who works aggressively in Asia finds that it does, as our volunteer in Hong Kong, Nicole would also concur.

Here’s how it works:

1) SLEUTH: Anyone anywhere can become a sleuth for wildlife.

The public, old and young, basically anyone anywhere who cares about wildlife can become a sleuth (detective) while shopping in stores, malls, at festivals, craft shows, open markets, curio shops, flea markets, pet stores and airports.

2) SNAP: When you see wildlife products snap a photo.

When you see jewelry, clothing, rugs, trinkets, knives, bowls, belts, wall hangings, medicines, or anything that is possibly made from the horn, hair, tooth, feathers, skin or bone of an animal, take a picture. It doesn’t have to be top quality.

Birds and exotics that are being offered for sale and may well have been illegally trafficked and can also be included in this scavenger hunt to save wildlife.

3) SHARE: Upload the photo to the Facebook group SNAP it! STOP it! Save Wildlife

This is a Facebook page created specifically for you and anyone who cares to share photos of wildlife products spotted for the purpose of spreading awareness. If your photo prevents one person from buying a piece of jewelry, a rug, medicine or any other product made at the expense of a living being… you will have helped spare life as the demand decreases.

Tell us where you snapped the photo and what you believe it’s made of (unless its glaringly obvious.)

Not on Facebook? We’ll be creating other avenues shortly

Trouble uploading a photo to Facebook? Send us the image and we’ll do it for you.

If we stop the demand we can curb the killing, not immediately, that’s why we still need to protect wildlife on the ground, but over time it will stem the tide.

Do a little sleuthing this holiday season… and beyond. You may save some wild creature from a cruel death at a poacher’s hand.

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