• DAY 294: RELEASING WILD ANIMALS FROM JUNGLE MARKET GOES A LITTLE WRONG

    Jul 14 2013

     After releasing a number of animals from a market in the middle of the jungle I’m wracked with guilt as to what happened to the poor turtle I put in the stream – or was it a tortoise??  I am such an idiot

    Is this a lesson in how we should be more compassionate…or simply how good intentions can be a dangerous thing?

    I once asked an expert for a very quick lesson in first aid in case I was in an emergency. He refused to give it to me on the basis that a little knowledge may be worse than no knowledge. It would be like arriving at a car crash with a box of sticking plaster and some string. Now I think I know what he meant…

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  • DAY 293: DEEP IN THE JUNGLE, BUT WHERE ARE THE PANGOS?

    Jul 13 2013

    A jungle or a desert?

    Laos is a wild and beautiful place, covered in so much lush forest that you can virtually drink the green.

    And yet this place has been plundered of so many creatures, including of course the poor pangolin, that it risks becoming a shadow of what it once was. 

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  • DAY 277: UP PANGOLIN CREEK WITHOUT A PADDLE

    Jun 30 2013
    This is not actually a real photo but an artists impression of how I FEEL

    This is not actually a real photo but an artists impression of how I FEEL

    I feel a bit lost. Like I’m lost in the jungle. Ask Ann, I’ve just been on the phone whining to her.

    My arms are pumped up but I have no paddle. I desperately want to help the pangolins but if go out into the wild to find one I’ll be eaten by snakes, if I rescue one from a trader it will die on me, if I feed Lucky peanuts he will roll over and expire and if I all I do is tell you about it you’ll get bored of me like Pippa Russell did on my first date , aged 10, when I showed her my breakdance moves.

    I’ve bought a local phone and made over sixty calls to various international experts in the fields – charity workers, biologists, Phd students, scientists, government officials – to find out where I can go to get more access to the illegal trade. Either no one knows or they won’t answer my calls or they are out eating pangolin burgers or my phone is actually a child’s phone that pretends to make calls.

    In the meantime I’ve given up rescuing the frogs and decided to accept I am one with nature. I’ve named the frog that appears every morning Chad and the cockroach Josephine on account of her elegant walk.  The termites have moved in and the mosquitoes live on the toilet wall. It does raise an interesting point though: to accept animals as having rights doesn’t mean you have to love them. As Peter Singer, the philosopher and poster boy for the animal liberation said, just because you believe blacks should have the same moral consideration as whites doesn’t mean  you have to to coo at them and love all black people. I have decided therefore to put a mosquito net and stop the frog sleeping under my pillow.

    NEWSFLASH

    Weirdly, after writing this I got a message from Phuong to say that 57 pangolins have just been seized on the Chinese border. And get this, already 48 of them have died. Those 48 have already been sold on to restaurants but the other 7 are on their way to Hanoi. I’m going to try and go and get them…..

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