Target: Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, President of Argentina
Goal: Protect the giant anteater from the threat of extinction
Between the years 2000 and 2010 alone, the total population of giant anteaters has rapidly decreased by over 30%. Although they are not currently an endangered species, scientists estimate that there are as little as 5,000 of these animals remaining in the wild today.
This decline is largely the result of human practices, such as sport hunting and habitat destruction. Populations of giant anteaters in Central and South America are particularly threatened by habitat loss. In Brazil, for example, the burning of sugar cane plantations prior to the harvest period leads to the deaths of a significant number of giant anteaters. Furthermore, these animals are often hunted for food and sold in the illegal trade as pets.
Currently, their range extends from southern Belize down to northern Argentina, but if habitat destruction continues to occur, giant anteaters could very easily become extinct. They are listed on several national Red Data lists and are a protected species in some provinces in Argentina. However, there is a desperate need to improve fire management practices on sugarcane plantations and within the regions of grassland habitats. Hunting must also be regulated.
Urge the Argentinean president to enact legislation in order to do this. The future of this 25 million-year-old species depends on it.
Dear Cristina Fernández de Kirchner,
The giant anteater has been around for over 25-million-years. However, just within the last decade, the total population of giant anteaters has rapidly decreased by over 30%. Today, only 5,000 or so remain in the wild.
Habitat destruction and sport hunting are the two main causes of this rapid decline. The giant anteater is commonly hunted for food or sold as pets in the illegal, international trade. Furthermore, farmers often endanger the habitat of this animal by setting fire to sugarcane fields before harvest periods.
Although giant anteaters are not considered an endangered species, at this rate they could very easily become extinct. Currently, they occupy regions in southern Belize down to northern Argentina, but if habitat destruction and sport hunting continue, their range will rapidly diminish. I urge you to take action today. Enact legislation that will improve fire management practices on sugarcane plantations and within specific regions of grassland habitats. The sport of hunting should be thoroughly regulated in the same areas. Save this species before it is too late.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Malene Thyssen via Wikimedia Commons