How does a coronavirus pandemic affect animals?


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The pandemic of the new coronavirus CoVID-19 is not the only problem for humans. Unfortunately, the rapid changes in our lives have a negative impact on the animal world. The Internet has been flooded with videos from different countries, in which mountain goats, wild coyotes and wild boars roam the empty streets of the cities. In general, everything that has happened recently is reminiscent of scenes from films about the death of human civilization: when plants take up more and more space and wolves and deer roam the streets. Of course I hope this doesn't happen, but after just a few weeks of quarantine, wild boar went to central Barcelona and in Thailand the monkeys that fed the tourists roamed the streets in search of food and attacked people. It turns out that with each new day CoVID-19 creates new problems that need to be addressed urgently.

Mountain goats conquered city streets in Wales, UK

What happens to animals without humans?

If you think that everything is fine with animals when humanity suddenly disappears, do not rush to conclusions. Of course, many species thrive in the absence of humans, such as coyotes, wild boar and rats. The fact is that coyotes and rats are, in a way, "universal animals" that can adapt to a variety of environmental conditions and feed on what they find. However, not all animals are so lucky – some species are now threatened with extinction and need human help to survive.

The first thing to mention are the animals closest to us – dogs, cats, pigeons, seagulls and so on. Many dogs and cats live on the streets and like pigeons and seagulls are addicted to human food. There are practically no people on the streets and there is simply no one who feeds stray animals. In the past, they could at least eat leftovers that were thrown away by people, but now there is practically no edible garbage in the deserted streets. Don't forget the animals that are kept in dog and cat shelters – there are no visitors, the owners do not receive donations and our smaller brothers are hungry.

Don't you think that birds starve to death without people walking on the streets? Watch this video where starving white doves literally crashed onto human-thrown food.

Unfortunately, in early 2020, more and more wild animals needed help due to severe fires in Brazil. I want to remind you that koalas have been so badly hit by fire that many experts have raised concerns about restoring their population. In order to save koalas and other species living in Australia, special reserves were created in which the animals were given the necessary support. In the context of the CoVID-19 pandemic, many animals are left unattended when it is actually prohibited in many countries to leave their homes. In the koala reserve in Australia, "Lone Pine Koala" seems to have found a solution to the problem – now these cute pandas can be viewed online on a special website or a YouTube channel. Such flows enable donations to be made to maintain and protect the reserve. At the very least, money is needed so that reserve staff can purchase the necessary personal protective equipment and continue their work in a pandemic. In general, I recommend viewing.

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Unfortunately, not all countries behave like Australia. In Africa, where the ecotourism industry is funding wildlife conservation efforts, the corona virus has caused serious problems for both humans and animals. According to Wired, tourism before the pandemic in Namibia accounted for 16% of employment; In Tanzania, where Kilimanjaro is located, protected land occupies more than a quarter of the entire country. However, due to an outbreak of the corona virus, the tourism industry decayed almost overnight, and protected areas are closed at least until September. This means that people who protect animals from poachers receive no salary. Given massive unemployment, they can become poachers themselves to feed their families.

I don't know why people decided that our species is more important than others

If you are not interested in poaching, you will probably be a little surprised. Scientists believe that the new SARS CoV-2 coronavirus could occur precisely because of poachers who hunted pretty and unusual animals – pangolins. These mammals feed on ants and live mainly in South Africa. Unfortunately, the unusual gastronomic hobbies of the people of the Celestial Empire have threatened the pangolins with extinction. Read more about the relationship of these animals to the new coronavirus in our material.

The situation in Africa is also exacerbated by the collapse of the Kenyan flower supply industry on the Amsterdam flower market. The bankruptcy of the industry has just left 7,000 people unemployed. It is important to understand that all of these people are also looking for food and many are starting to hunt wild animals. Today there is a real war between cattle defenders and poachers in Africa, which are massively destroying elephants and rhinos. Unfortunately, not only animals but also humans suffer in this war. However, it seems to me that saving other species from death is a direct human responsibility. But when it comes to survival, the situation becomes very difficult.

Elephants are incredibly intelligent animals that are capable of compassion and mutual support.

Needless to say, similar problems may soon arise in other countries around the world. Recently, Russia has updated information on endangered species in the Red Book for the first time in 23 years – 43 species have been added, including greylag goose, Siberian eider, reindeer, Caspian seal and many others. The list itself can be found on the department's official website. With unemployment rising due to the CoVID-19 outbreak, hunters are calling on the government not to ban hunting because people have to feed their families. At the same time, it is extremely unlikely that someone will think about the survival of rare wildlife in a critical situation.

Many animals on islands, such as B. Seabirds are also threatened by the pandemic. When humans arrived on the islands, they brought with them a species that could exterminate other animals – rats. Rodents are known to love eating the eggs of seabirds that nest on the ground. Without human help, the future of these birds is at risk due to a possible rat invasion. So if people suddenly disappear, so many species may not survive.

What do you think governments around the world should do to protect wildlife during a pandemic? Share your opinion in the comments and with the participants in our telegram chat

What happens to animals in cities?

Watch this video closely:

It contains videos taken by eyewitnesses from different countries. The city's empty streets now belong to wild animals – Rambla Street in Barcelona has been captured by wild boar, coyotes attack San Francisco, and hungry wild monkeys, previously fed by tourists, roam Bangkok and other cities. A small town in Wales, UK, mountain goats were completely at the mercy. The reason why animals behave in this way is very simple: people not only do not travel, they also do not leave their homes. Many areas were left unattended and some animals felt more or less calm and started to explore unknown areas. In most cases, animals are still looking for food.

Agree, this is a fairly serious problem whose solution cannot be postponed. If we want to preserve biodiversity and ecosystems, urgent action is needed to preserve the wildlife. Let's not forget that if a pandemic lasts 18 months or more, experts warn that many animals may simply not survive.