Editorial | Sydney Ross Singer
I am writing you about a serious problem which you can help solve! It means saving birds and wild sheep from extinction.
The photo below shows dead sheep rotting on the slopes of Hawaii’s Mauna Kea volcano. Helicopters armed with government paid eradicators shooting at wild sheep with assault weapons, all for the alleged purpose of trying to save the finch-like endangered palila bird from extinction.
Unfortunately, killing the sheep is not helping the birds, despite 30 years of sheep carnage that has reduced their population from 40,000 to less than 300 today. They will soon all be wiped out if we don’t stop this useless slaughter.
The sheep are being killed to prevent damage to the mamane tree, the seeds of which are food for the endangered bird. But killing the sheep and growing more mamane has not helped the palila bird recover. In fact, weeds that had been controlled by the sheep are now tall and dry as the sheep are killed, creating a fire hazard that can destroy the palila habitat altogether.
We need to find some way to help the palila bird without needlessly exterminating every last wild sheep in Hawaii. It’s time to call a halt to the sheep eradication experiment and do some new research into what can really help the palila, as well as the nearly extinct Hawaiian wild sheep.
Please go to this petition and sign it. Then send it around to all the compassionate friends and contacts you have.
Together, we can end the senseless slaughter of sheep and start saving the palila bird.