Episode 10 – Pangolins, Monkeys and an Insect Armageddon

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A collection of images, bringing a visual aspect to accompany the audio of this episode can be seen below.

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A link to Bubugo Conservation Trust, Jenny Farmer’s (and partner Charlie Langan’s) community initiative running the trees and bees project: www.bubugoconservation.org

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Feel free to ask a question, send some feedback or connect with Sam:
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Onto the collection of images:

First, people said their goodbyes, and then we had to rip the buildings apart and remove any salvageable materials off the island.
Next the deforestation and destruction of the natural habitat. It was pretty chaotic at this stage… the shot here is after deforestation and partial clearing of the wood so is perhaps clearer than it was initially, imagine trying to locate, catch and save wildlife in the thick undergrowth on right of shot and you have an idea of the challenge at hand.
Another panoramic, this time from the top of the hill on the main island a month or two after the clearing, just before the flooding began. Some grass and vegetation has already started to recover. Large areas of scorched earth showed location of enormous charcoal fires. Ruins of the buildings, only what had no reuse value was left. For those that knew it, the starkness and emptiness of it all without the trees is perhaps the most striking. The bush middle right of shot is where we ultimately found the mother and daughter monkey (and huge forest cobra!) during the last rescue.
Written on the inside of the Hairy Lemon bar, right until the very last day I saw the water level half way up the top line…
“Your beliefs become your thoughts
Your thoughts become your words
Your words become your actions
Your actions become your habits
Your habits become your values
Your values become your destiny”
Mahatma Ghandi
These three were some of the first creatures to be captured in the main rescue mission. They look scared, and understandably so, but they ultimately ended up a lot better off for being captured, soon after they were released to start a new life somewhere else.
A wide range of species and sizes of snakes were captured, not without risk to the capturers, this work was reserved exclusively for the professional snake handlers… the snake in shot is a forest cobra and you wouldn’t want to get bitten by this guy!
This adolescent monkey had a large cut near his eye, probably from the tree cutting which is obviously dangerous and disruptive for the animals. He was treated with good veterinary care, thanks to donated funds, and released as soon as he was sufficiently healed to continue hopefully a long and happy life.
The incredible tree pangolin! A rarely seen sight, especially this close up. Tikki Hywood Foundation were amazing during the whole rescue mission, they contributed significant funds, expertise and also credit for this and a few of the other pictures in this collection.
It wasn’t just the bigger animals that benefit, some of the little guys got a ride to freedom too!
Tree pangolin number two! Rolling into a perfect circle is a defence mechanisms of the tree pangolins, exposing only it’s hard scales to the outside.
The flooding begins. Here is me saying a final goodbye to what is left of my house. So many memories.
Half way through flooding, the final kayak based rescue begins, first lap of the island, floating over the low lying areas, some of the buildings and high ground in shot.
Looking from upstream at the half flooded Hairy Lemon island. The remaining wildlife condensed.
A few hundred insects take things into their own hands and find a rescue raft, clinging to this stick, hoping to be carried to safety.
Time to release the monkeys!
The second kayak rescue team group shot at the tail end of a long, emotional and bizarre days ‘work’.
Community members of the local village discussing locations and plans for the trees and bees project.
Volunteer Katie Zeno answering questions and finalising plans for the community aspect of the trees and bees.
A part of the degraded riverbank set for reforestation as part of the trees and bees project. We’re waiting on rainy season arriving before getting going on the planting.
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