Tuesday, August 11, 2009


It was long believed that building rainforest reserves around the home range of the top predators would provide the minimum critical area for success. Thus, the wide ranging Jaguar (Panthera onca) was the benchmark for such efforts in South America. The idea, in part, is a good one, but we now understand that the real top predator in any ecosystem is--look in the mirror--Homo sapiens.

It is generally accepted that helping local communities solve their problems leads to sustainable use of resources and has a beneficial effect on the habitat in which these people live. While many conservation organizations do a good job of popularizing animals and their plight, we want to recognize an outstanding group called Cultural Survival.

Cultural Survival was founded in response to the opening up of the Amazonian and South American hinterlands during the 1960's, and the drastic effects this had on indigenous inhabitants. It has since worked with indigenous communities in Asia, Africa, South America, North America, and Australia, becoming the leading US-based organization defending the rights of indigenous peoples around the world.



Post a Comment