Indeed, that was the first reaction that many people expressed when I brought up the topic of poaching in Indonesia. Many even exclaimed in wonderment, “What animals are there in Indonesia other than Orang Utans? I thought most of the poaching took place in Africa, haha!” I would have to admit that I was surprised to learn that Indonesia was home to a great many of the animals in the world and was know for its great biodiversity.
I have always had a soft spot for animals and doing this research has been hard on my heart, particularly seeing pictures of the animals mutilated, caged and with such terror in their eyes.
This blog will be a little documentation of what the poaching situation has been like in Indonesia and what activists and the Indonesian government itself has been trying to do. I will also be providing links at the side bars for those of you interested in finding out more about the cause to stop poaching and other links for those of you who wish to “adopt” an animal or a conservation close to your heart :) But for each situation, I will write a little more about the psychological theories behind why people do, think and feel the way they do! This is not going to be your usual place to get information about the poaching situation in Indonesia. It will give you a deeper insight into the psyche of all the people involve in the situation :) Hopefully, through learning about these theories, you will be more aware of what drives people to poach, to want these animals and maybe even a little bit about why people care about some animal so far removed from them to put themselves in the line of fire! You see, many of these poachers are actually running under an organised syndicate and it is a really big business. Activists who thwart their plans are in direct opposition of their lucrative business and so they would actually send death threats to activists and people have died for such causes.
I’m thinking of posting some self-made videos too because I feel like looking at too many of the sad pictures of the animals would make me feel too disheartened about the situation to do anything about it and perhaps the same would be for you too… Hopefully telling the story in less graphic manner would still get the point across without turning people who cannot take gore off! Besides, there is hope for the situation, however small it may appear! Also, one of my favourite things to do is to draw animals :) I really wish more people shared the same love I had for animals… I’m sure that there are many people out there who do love animals but who want to possess the animals because they want to possess the animal’s beauty (which is just an illusion!) and because they want to admire the animal any time that they wish. I think that this human nature of wanting to possess something they like sometimes gets in the way of the common sense that these animals thrive best in their natural habitat and that they are happiest where they should be, doing what they should do. If you love these animals, why would you want to subject them to captivity or, even worse, death? Can a beautiful fish look as beautiful in a tank as when it swims freely in the river, sunlight glinting off its beautiful scales? Can a Sun bear look as cute and fluffy in a cage as when it is sitting in the forest basking in the sun and rolling in the greens? Would a bird be as beautiful in a cage as it would flying freely through the treetops? I would think not…
Okay, after this introduction, I hope that you would enjoy the rest of the entries that shall follow and you find yourself more knowledgeable about both the situation of poaching in Indonesia and a little bit more about the psychology behind all involved!