"My time will come to die, but people should understand that at least I have preserved these animals. I have conserved these animals for the future generations." Solomun Chidunuka, Wildlife Ranger
Friday 29th July is International Tiger Day, and with initiatives across the world coming together to learn more about this critically endangered species, we’re taking the opportunity to talk about the critical work that TUSK does to protect more than 40 threatened species and their habitat.
As well as protecting the African elephant, rhino and lion, TUSK plays an important role in the survival of the cheetah, chimpanzee, eastern lowland and mountain gorillas, painted dog, Grevy’s zebra, giant sable, Cape vulture, hawksbill turtle and many more. Tigers, in fact, are one of the few animals that don’t feature on TUSK’s At Risk List - given that their focus is sharply placed on maintaining the habitats of animals indigenous to Africa.
Still, there are shared issues for many endangered species - just as tigers are threatened by the illegal wildlife trade, so too are the iconic African species - and as Tigers are hunted for their pelts, so are Elephants and Rhinos poached for their tusks and horns. The illegal wildlife trade is the fourth largest criminal industry in the world, worth as much as $20b per year. TUSK has been tackling the Poaching and Illegal Wildlife Trade with the help of the charity’s supporters.
If you have an interest in big cats, you may fall in love with one or two pieces from our TUSK collection. The Luangwa Lion is an iconic objet d’art from the collection, named after South Luangwa in Zambia, which faces widespread poaching of big game. Funding from Tusk helps Conservation South Luangwa to increase anti-poaching efforts and prevent animal trafficking, and this finely chased sterling silver lion is also available in miniature for a limited time - with only 100 hand engraved Luangwa Lions available for purchase.
Habitat loss is perhaps the greatest threat to the majority of wildlife, including 85% of all threatened species, including tigers. With approximately half of the world’s original forests gone, and what remains being removed faster than it can be replaced, the survival of many species depends on a healthy, connected habitat. TUSK is helping by protecting habitats and functioning ecosystems, just as important for local communities as it is for local wildlife, and helping to safeguard water and food supplies.
One Grant Macdonald London creation that was specifically designed to draw attention to the plight of species that are endangered as a result of habitat loss is the Albany Snake Letter Opener. Capturing the beauty of this highly endangered, rarely spotted viper, the letter opener is rendered in Sterling Silver with 24ct gold plate, and 20% from the sale of each piece is donated to TUSK to support their vitally important conservation efforts.
-To discover more about the efforts of TUSK in protecting endangered animals, you can explore our TUSK collection. To learn more about tigers and to get involved with some of the events taking place on the 29th July, visit WWF for more information.