If you are thinking about your goals for next year, we have some suggestions related to wildlife you might want to add to your list.
Wild animals are not pets.
There are many contributing factors to the illegal pet trade of exotic wildlife. This trade means that animals have been taken out of the wild so that humans can use them as entertainment and profit from them; for example, putting wildlife in captive situations for wildlife selfies or petting opportunities portrays a misconceived concept that wildlife makes good pets.
Make it a goal to be part of the #stopanimalselfies campaign. Do not support said activities where animals are taken out of the wild or kept as residents at fraudulent sanctuaries or zoos. These illegal activities risk wild animals’ lives and directly affect them and their environment.
Help animals in need.
Most of the time, when animals are in danger, people don’t know what to do. Educating communities about wildlife and knowing when an animal needs help is essential. As a New Years’ goal, you can learn more about nature and how to help it.
Going for an educational visit to a sanctuary or participating in local educational programs focusing on wildlife conservation, you can learn more about nature and ways to protect it. You can learn how to protect their natural environment and how you can help in its conservation.
Support wildlife rescue centers and ethical sanctuaries.
Rescue centers are where animals in need are rescued and given a second chance at life. Likely due to human-animal conflicts such as the illegal pet trade and loss of habitat. All these situations affect wildlife and cause environmental decline; the best way to help animals is by working with your local wildlife authorities and bringing them to rescue centers to receive professional attention.
One of the best ways to help wildlife and be great for your New Years’ goals is by supporting those whose mission is to help wildlife, like rescue centers. Most rescue centers worldwide are non-profit organizations that live by donations, so you will assist the animals in being rescued, rehabilitated, and rewilded.
Consider supporting Toucan Rescue Ranch as your goal for wildlife and be part of it by volunteering, donating, symbolic adopting, or visiting.
About the writer: María Ureña is a born and raised Costa Rican. She has been an on-call tour guide for Toucan Rescue Ranch since 2022. Recently, María has become the Marketing Intern for Toucan Rescue Ranch, where she will learn about copywriting, social media, and communication strategies. She is a marketing student at Universidad Latina de Costa Rica and has experience in community management, and is a member of Guides and Scouts of Costa Rica.