Though there are many animals that are endangered there is one I especially want to talk to you about, the wild chinchillas. (If you don’t know what they are you can check out my recent post here)
Chinchillas, like most animals, are being killed for their fur. Their extremely soft, puffy fur makes them vulnerable to fur traders and hunters. Because it took more than 50 chinchillas to make a coat; chinchilla populations soon started decreasing at an alarming rate. According to Meadow (1969), “…the disappearance of chinchillas alarmed the South American governments…By 1918 all of them had placed an embargo on exportation of chinchilla furs, and laws against trapping the animal.”
After disappearing for a while, both species, the long-tailed and short-tailed chinchillas were rediscovered in Chile, during the late 1900’s and early 2000’s. Though they had been rediscovered they had grown afraid of humans because of destruction. Their habitat were getting destroyed by roads, mines, and buildings. With their habitats destroyed and the population dwindling, the government made efforts to create a reserves like the National Chinchilla Reserve in Chile.(about less than half of the wild long-tailed chinchilla population lives there)
Inside protected areas were the Chinchillas really able to grow, but outside of the areas they continue to die and fade away. Mines have been killing colonies of chinchillas because they are mining straight through the colony. Though there are still things killing them,(unnaturally) you can help an change that!
How you can Help!
1. Funding: Though you aren’t helping the chinchillas in a direct way, you can help them by funding for protection. Your money can help pay for land or reserves to help keep the chinchillas safe, but still be in their natural habitat.
2. Spread awareness: Awareness is one of the things that can lead to change. Letting people become more aware of a problem and what it has created give people a chance to take action.
3. Don’t buy anything made with chinchilla fur: Not buying anything made out of chinchilla fur will decrease the demand for chinchilla fur and the cost. Eventually, the demand will decrease significantly until it isn’t worth enough to go and kill chinchillas.
4. Adopting a Chinchilla in a shelter: Getting to know Chinchillas better can help bridge gaps between you and them. I’ve been babysitting my cousin’s chinchilla for the past week and we’ve become very close. Being with him has taught me to become more aware of things I normally wouldn’t be aware of, it has also taught me more things than I would have really wanted to go and find out. If you care, there are things that you are willing to do. If you choose to get one, check out my other post on Taking Care of Your Chinchilla
With love and support maybe we can patch the hole between us and chinchillas.
“Love build bridges where there are none” – R.H. Delaney
Everything can make a difference!☺