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Newsletter 43
01/06/11

Your Future and the Tiger

Runti    Volunteers    Photographic Competition    Tiger Canyons Special    Donations

"I'm so stupid for getting sucked into another National Geographic program about saving animals.  Thought for once maybe someone would actually do the right thing and help rather than just sit on their ass, narrate and watch.  Disappointed yet again.  Poor little Runt suffered day after day while you just looked and talked about it rather than taking action.  Ratings rather than doing the right thing.  Hope you're happy with your contract.  I will not recommend you for Causes and never watch the program again". 
Christine McKown

Hello Christine 

Thank you for your e-mail. I respect your point of view but on a few points you are quite wrong. 

I have a few questions, the programme is 3 hours long, the Runti sequence comes at the end of the third hour, why didn't you simply flip the switch and go to the boxing or the wrestling or the horse racing or the war in Iran? 

As the worlds human population moves through 7 billion, there are going to be more and more programmes about humans saving animals. I personally think we are fortunate to have National Geographic Channel. They could easily invest in soap operas and make much more money. 

"I thought for once maybe someone would actually do the right thing and help rather than just sit on their ass (I think you mean arse, an ass is a donkey and donkeys and tigers don't mix very well), narrate and watch." 

If you look at the footage, Runti walks in a hunched-up way. She had a physical defect from birth and was weaker than the other four cubs. Even if I had a vet in daily attendance, Runti could never have made it. 
 


Runti

Runti - small cub on top of Julie

At Londolozi Game Reserve it happens regularly. One or two of the lion cubs in a litter are weaker than the other cubs and die. Do you suggest I get out of my jeep and save the runts and put them in a cages with the other 5000 lions in captivity in South Africa? 
 

Captive lions in South Africa

Human beings, through there intelligence and technological advances, choose to keep crippled, deformed and weak babies alive. Tigers have no such luxury, they are controlled by the laws of nature. Ironically, Runti's death helps ensure the survival of the other 4 cubs. 

Right now, because of the devastating floods, I have tigers born and raised wild, sitting in holding bomas, waiting patiently for me to fence and stock a new area so they can return to the wild. To keep these tigers in holding bomas, cost me R50,000 per year. I notice your E-mail doesn't offer to contribute financially to raising Runti in captivity. 

"Ratings rather than doing the right thing". Rating are the last thing on my mind when recording the events as they unfold. In fact when Runti was alive, I had no contract with National Geographic. I have also been criticized for revealing the mistakes made at Tiger Canyons. When I accidentally shot Tigress Shadow in the foot, I had no need to expose the accident to you or anybody else.  I could have easily kept the death of Runti to myself. 
 


Shadow licking wound

Vet checking Shadow's paw

Tiger Canyons is an experiment, it has successes and failures. I communicate the good, the bad and the ugly and I decided a long time ago, to be totally transparent. I am a one man band and I take the decisions in the best interest of the tigers as a group. From success we learn and from failure we learn even more. 

"I will not recommend you for causes and will never watch the programme again."  

This seems rather dramatic! Why don't you visit Tiger Canyons, see for yourself and then make a judgment call. 

Volunteers

However this newsletter is not about Runti, it is addressed to the hundreds of students, volunteers and young people requesting work at Tiger Canyons. Many of you are wanting to make careers in conservation. I say follow your dreams. 

Let me explain - Tiger Canyons is a one man show, it is an experiment. I have a tight band of local people who support me. I live in an old ramshackle house. There is no accommodation for volunteers. All my money is in the Tigers. 


JV hunting with Julie

By e-mailing me, you have automatically joined the global team to save the wild tiger, so I urge you to stay in touch with me and keep me informed of your progress. Don't take my failure to reply to your request as discouragement. Your e-mails and requests are important to me and there is definitely a role that you can play in the conservation of tigers. 

 

Patsy Flynn

These photographs were taken in Kanah and Bandhavgarh National Parks in India last
November.  We were very fortunate to encounter the might and majesty of 12 different tigers
in the wild over the course of 6 days.  
This trip is an experience that my husband and I shall never forget!    

Wild Tigers I believe, belong to the world, not just to the Asian countries that inherited them. I believe that wild tigers are a planetary treasure and each and everyone of us on this planet and our children should have the right to see a tiger in the wilds. 
 


Niladri Sarkar, India

The Pictures have been taken at Two Tiger reserve parks namely Bandhavgarh
National Park  & Tiger reserve & Kanha National Park, both located in the state of
Madhya Pradesh, INDIA.

The world's human population has just passed through 7 billion and the wild tiger has declined to around 1000. 

Many people now believe that the Asian countries who inherited the wild tiger are incapable of saving them or conserving them. This is where you,  who are starting out on a career in conservation, have opportunity. 
 


Siva Baskaran
I captured this photo during my recent visit to Ranthambore, Rajasthan,
India. Late afternoon, she was sitting near a pool and was about to sleep.
Suddenly a group of Sambars (deers) came to the waterhole and she
 just looked up and the deers ran for their life. Our jeeps were standing
some 20 mtrs from her. Then she looked at us for a brief moment of
3-4 seconds and turned her head to the other side and went to sleep.
I just loved the fire in her eyes & the
beautiful whiskers

Lakshmi Mittal the Indian tycoon, is the fifth richest man in the world. He has acquired his wealth from steel, yet not a single tiger park in India is fenced. How is this possible? 

At the same time there are dozens of examples of parks in Africa which are fenced and successfully contain large cats like lion, leopard and cheetah. At Tiger Canyons we have successfully run tigers side by side with domestic stock by using electric fences. 

When I ask the Indian authorities why they don't fence their parks, they say there is no budget. Yet India is spending billions of dollar an developing nuclear weapons. How is it that they can't find a budget to separate the human and the domestic stock from the tigers? Is war more important than saving a magnificent creature like the tiger? 


Electrical fence at Tiger Canyons

Perhaps you folks in India know Lakshmi Mittal or other wealthy influential businessmen. The future of the wild tiger is in your hands.  

The tiger needs space which has suitable habitat, it needs suitable prey and protection from poachers, and domestic stock grazing into the unfenced parks. Therefore the first step is to get as many of the parks electrically fenced with a 3.3 meter barrier. Is it expensive? You bet it is!  

The second step is to privatize the parks. Get them into the hands of private enterprise. Take the conservation of tigers out of the hands of the government. Follow the South African model where the private enterprise owns more wildlife than the South African government. It's the private enterprise that is expanding land for wildlife by 300,000 hectares per year in South Africa. 

Therefore to all Indian people who correspond with me, I say study successful models elsewhere and then create pressure for change in India. 

Hotel groups in India that rely on tourism, should be encouraged to acquire land which is fenced and stocked with suitable prey. Then the tigers can be introduced and controlled ecotourism developed. Once again South Africa has good examples in its private lodges.  

Travel to Londolozi Game Reserve in South Africa  and see how we allow only 3 jeeps at a time around the leopards sightings. In Indian parks, if a tiger is located, as many as 22 jeeps may crowd around the tiger. Tourism is then seen as a disadvantage to wild tigers instead of a benefit. 


Viewing vehicle showing tourist leopard at Londolozi

For you conservation students that live outside Asia you have an even bigger role to play. If the wild tiger is not going to be saved in Asia where is it going to be saved? 

Approach your local zoos and encourage them to acquire land for wild tigers. There is an estimated 45,000 tigers in captivity world wide. Encourage your zoos to do ex-situ conservation projects with wild tigers. Putting a tiger in a cage is "old think", encourage the zoos to go for wild populations of tigers. 

Approach your national parks to create protected areas for wild tigers.

In short, you create populations of wild tigers in Australia, Africa, USA, Canada, anywhere where you can find space and suitable prey. To the many USA people who correspond with me, I say approach Ted Turner, he has vast tracts of land in New Mexico and Montana. Ted gave a $1billion to the United Nations. 

There are many millionaires in the USA, try and influence them into investing in wild tiger populations. I have been on big ranches in Texas, some are very suitable for tiger sanctuaries. 

In the world today, the rich people are getting richer and poor people are getting poorer. This is not a recipe for stability in the future. History has shown us that when war break out, wildlife disappears rapidly. Mozambique Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Korea, Zimbabwe, Uganda and Rwanda are all good examples of wild life being decimated during war time. 

If India and Pakistan end up at war with each other, as seems inevitable, where will the tiger be? The tigers is a big bodied predator that needs space, habitat, prey and protection from human beings. When human beings start killing each other, the chances of humans protecting the last tigers are nil. The tiger already competes with 320 people per square kilometer in India, a war scenario would be disastrous for the tiger and its habitat. 

Therefore I say the more wild tiger populations that are created outside Asia, the better. Tiger Canyons has done much of the initial research. We have a road map to create these ex-situ conservation sanctuaries. The information is freely available and we have wild tigers ready for relocation. 

To you students, conservationist, dreamers, innovators, visionaries, writers, poets, musicians around the world, look to create tiger sanctuaries for wild tigers in your own countries, this is the most valuable role you can play. 

Try to be the most effective where you can and that is in your own countries. Use Tiger Canyons as the springboard to launch your projects, I will travel to help you when you have a suitable sites and resources to make it happen. 

Never believe that you cannot achieve it. "First dream, then communicate, then plan and finally execute. Vision, attitude, tenacity, enthusiasm and youth are your biggest allies." Good luck to you all. 

Photographic Competition:

Tiger Canyons is offering the following competition to tiger supporters and photographers:

  • The best picture of a tiger, or tigress or lioness Savannah taken at Tiger Canyons, will win a Big Cat Safari for 2 people sharing. Value R120 000

 

Londolozi and Tiger Canyons

A Big Cat Safari is 3 nights at Londolozi Game Reserve and 3 nights at Tiger Canyons. It does not include travel to and from Londolozi and Tiger Canyons respectively.

Not more than 3 pictures per person may be entered and entries close on 30th September 2011.

All pictures should be captioned and in the case of a non-adult, the age of the photographer should be stated.

  • The picture rated second by the judges, wins two nights at Tiger Canyons for two people sharing. Value R15 000. Excludes travel to Tiger Canyons.

  • The picture rated third by the judges, wins one night at Tiger Canyons for 2 people. Value R8 000.

  • The picture rated fourth, gets one lined bound signed copy of Nine Lives. Value R5 000

  • The picture rated 5th, gets one signed copy of  Nine Lives. Value R300

The judges of the competition, will be well known photographers, Daryl and Sharna Balfour and their decision shall be final.

Tiger Canyons has the rights to make 30 limited copies of the picture which wins first prize, to be sold to raise funds for Tiger Conservation. All costs of the 30 prints to be incurred by Tiger Canyons.

Tiger Canyons has the rights to make 20 prints of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th best pictures selected to be sold to raise money for Tiger Conservation. All expenses in creating these prints is for Tiger Canyons' expense.

I urge everyone, young and old, to join into the spirit of this competition and let's let our images speak across the world.

Pictures should be emailed to info@jvbigcats.co.za, closing date 30th September 2011. Your name, e-mail, cell phone number and country where you reside, should accompany your entry pictures. Resize your images to 150 KB before you email them (we don't have 3G). A short list will be made from the entries received and these participants will be requested to send their images in high resolution.

Tiger Canyons Special

For the months of June and July, Tiger Canyons is offering the chance for guests to hunt with tigress Julie and tigress Zaria.


Julie with kill

Hunting will be down the rugged tiger canyon and unfit or infirm people are advised not to participate. Hunting with tigers in this terrain is not for the faint hearted.

Children under 16 will not be allowed.

Contact Sunette: info@jvbigcats.co.za

Donations

Many people having seen "Tiger Man of Africa", have been inspired to offer donations to the project.

Many people across the world have inquired why I do not have a tiger foundation to which they can donate funds.

The answer lies in the fact that to create a foundation is costly and time consuming. Trustees need to be appointed to administer the foundation. I often find that the money gets spent on the admin rather than the tigers.

Therefore over the years I have tried to keep it simple. After the devastating floods, I created the Savannah Fund in memory of the lioness lost in the chaos.

If anyone would like to donate to the Savannah Fund, the donation would be most welcome and I will guarantee that the funds go straight into tiger conservation.

www.jvbigcats.co.za/savannahfund.htm

SEVEN FALLS TRADING (PTY) LTD
FIRST NATIONAL BANK - TROMPSBURG
A/C 62094732693
BRANCH CODE: 230932
SWIFT CODE: FIRNZAJJ
IBAN: 230932 62094732693
First National Bank
32 Church Street
TROMPSBURG
9913
SOUTH AFRICA

I am continually amazed and gratified at the concern for the wild tiger worldwide.

Tread lightly
JV

 

Tread lightly on the Earth

info@jvbigcats.co.za
Copyright 2007 @jvbigcats  All rights reserved


Newsletters


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13/11/17
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Newsletters 154
28/10/17
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Newsletter 153
20/10/17
Supermarket Shopper vs. Hunter Gatherer

Newsletter 152
14/10/17
JV's response to Elayna Kinley letter

Newsletters 151
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The Survivor

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In pursuit of Alan Root

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17/07/17
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20/05/17
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08/05/17
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Newsletter 143
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Newsletters 142
14/02/17
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13/10/16
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Newsletter 135
08/10/16
To trade  or not To Trade

Newsletter 134
08/08/16
A Defining Moment

Newsletter 133
08/07/16
I Have Lost A Friend

Newsletter 132
13/05/16
The World is Changing

Newsletter 131
08/04/16
Icon Cats

Newsletter 130
31/03/16
Sylvester the Lion

Newsletter 129
22/03/16
An Open Letter to Head United Nations

Newsletter 128
15/03/16
An Open Letter to Carte Blanche

Newsletter 127
28/11/15
Satellite Tracking

Newsletter 126
12/11/15
Lightning strikes 3 times

Newsletter 125
28/10/15
The Break Out

Newsletter 124
05/10/15
Bad Tigers

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01/10/15
Tiger Boy's Journey

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13/09/15
Give it a Name

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10/09/15
Driven Hunts

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01/09/15
Creative Conservation

Newsletter 119
12/08/15
Sariska from birth till death

Newsletter 118
11/08/15
Real Hunters

Newsletter 117
07/08/15
An Open Letter to the President: Operation Wild Lion

Newsletter 116
03/08/15
An Open Letter to Theo Bronkhorst

Newsletter 115
28/07/15
Cruel Nations

Newsletter 114
08/07/15
Subspecies or no subspecies

Newsletter 113
11/06/15
Tigers Moving Forward

Newsletter 112
13/04/15
Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Newsletter 111
26/03/15
Don't Shoot the Messenger

Newsletter 110
22/03/15
The Hunters

Newsletter 109
09/03/15
Gaia or God?

Newsletter 108
26/02/15
The Healing Power of Cats

Newsletter 107
18/02/15
Goddess Gaia

Newsletter 106
03/02/15
Ambassador Cats

Newsletter 105
24/01/15
Blondes have more fun

Invitation
09/01/15
Gaining ground for tigers

Newsletter 103
14/12/14
Tibo's Dilemma

Newsletter 102
05/12/14
Wilderness Man

Newsletter 101
25/11/14
Sariska fathers cubs with white Tigress Tibo

Newsletter 100
20/11/14
Cheetah Survival

Newsletter 99
30/09/14
Extract from JV's speech on Corbett's Freedom Day

Newsletter 98
15/08/14
The Power of the Picture

Newsletter 97
18/07/14
Tiger Corbett's Release

Newsletter 96
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Corbett's Journey

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18/06/14
Bush School: Where are they now?

Newsletter 94
12/05/14
Open letter to Jani Allen: Oscar Pistorius

Newsletter 93
07/05/14
John Varty interview with Sizie Modise

Newsletter 92
20/04/14
Marion's Big Cat Safari

Newsletter 91
24/02/14
Full energy flow

Newsletter 90
10/02/14
Investing in wild tigers

Newsletter 89
05/02/14
Where are the Champions?

Newsletter 88
27/01/14
Managing the Genes

Newsletter 87
16/01/14
Capture the Moment

Newsletter 86
07/12/13
The Princess Diana of Tigers - Julie:
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Newsletter 85
26/11/13
The Communicators

Newsletter 84
26/11/13
A Letter to All Conservationists in SA 
Sparked by the whole Melissa Bachman Debacle
by Maxine Gaines

Newsletter 83
16/11/13
Tell me what happened

Newsletter 82
04/11/13
Profit is the Name of Your Game

Newsletter 81
30/10/13

Big Cat Cub Safari


Newsletter 80
18/10/13
In the Jaws of the Tiger

Newsletter 79
11/10/13
Open letter to Vice President Cyril Ramaphosa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 78
06/10/13
Open letter to Min of Defense, South Africa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 77
30/09/13
Digital Photography

Newsletter 76
06/09/13
Zoochosis

Newsletter 75
20/07/13
Rhino Horn Trade - Response

Newsletter 74
09/07/13
Raw Power

Newsletter 73
02/07/13
The Evolution of the Tracker

Newsletter 72
02/07/13
An Open Letter to the Honourable Edna Molewa, Minister of Water Affairs and Environmental Affairs

Newsletter 71
06/06/13
Using flash or spotlight on cats at night

Newsletter 70
14/05/13
Mirror mirror on the wall, who has the best eyesight of them all?

Newsletter 69
12/04/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fastest of them all?

Newsletter 68
25/03/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the best fighter of them all?

Newsletters 67
07/03/13
Wild Cheetah return to the Free State after 100 years

Newsletter 66
28/02/13
Seeking the genes

Newsletters 65
06/02/13
Corbett's Journey

Newsletters 64
22/01/13
In Search of a Mate

Newsletters 63
11/01/13
Rumble in the Jungle

Newsletters 62
30/10/12
Voronin Big Cat Safari Breaks All Records

Newsletters 61
09/12/12
A Journey to Nowhere

Newsletter 60
03/10/12
The John Hume Approach

Newsletter 59
28/09/12
Response to Rhino Horn Auction

Newsletters 58
24/09/12
A Letter to John Hume, SA biggest Rhino Breeder

Newsletters 57
05/09/12
Newsletters 56
01/08/12
Indian Government -
the wrong decision

Newsletter 55
11/07/12
What price must beauty pay?

Newsletter 54
21/04/12
Corbett's Freedom

Newsletter 53
15/04/12
Lethal injection or Freedom

Newsletters 52
04/04/12
The anatomy of an aggressive tiger

Newsletters 51
14/02/12
Majestic, breathtaking pictures

Newsletters 50
04/11/11
Tigress Calendar

Newsletters 49
19/11/11

Let your pictures do the talking

Newsletters 48
26/09/11

Rhino Wars

Newsletters 47
06/09/11
A Letter to the President

Newsletters 46
08/08/11
The Body Parts Scam

Newsletters 45
11/07/11
Tiger Subspecies

Newsletters 43
01/05/11
Your future and the Tiger

Newsletter 42
08/05/11
Talk to Me

Newsletter 41
26/01/11
Gaian Reminder

Newsletter 40
18/11/10
Ron's Journey

Newsletter 39
20/10/10
"Descreprimate"

Newsletter 38
06/09/10
Beauty comes at a price

Newsletter 37
18/08/10

The Light Has Gone Out


Newsletter 36
08/07/10
The Beautiful Game

Newsletter 35
05/07/10
The Ethics of
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Newsletter 34
21/06/10
Tiger Hunt

Newsletter 33
26/05/10
The Year of the Tiger

Newsletter 32
11/02/10

Riding the Tiger


Newsletter 31
24/01/10

Runti's Journey


Newsletter 30
12/01/10

To intervene or not to intervene -
that is the question...

Newsletter 29
07/12/09

Lion - Tiger - Human Communication


Newsletter 28
12/11/09

Emotional humans, emotional cats


Newsletter 27
03/11/09

Julie gives birth to 5 tiger cubs


Newsletter 26
24/09/09

International Tiger Day


Newsletter 25
17/08/09

To all Photographers


Newsletter 24
16/07/09

A Shot in Anger


Newsletter 22
24/04/09


Newsletter 21
24/03/09


Newsletter 19
14/01/09

Tiger Birth
at Tiger Canyons


Newsletter 16
10/10/08

Tiger Courting


Newsletter 11
29/01/08

Privatizing the Tiger


Newsletter 9
27/10/07

Newsletter 8
28/09/07

Newsletter 7
14/09/07

Water Cats


Newsletter 6
14/08/07

Tiger Intelligence


Newsletter 5
16/05/07

Tiger language
Tiger Boma


Newsletter 3
09/03/07

Interspecies communication


Newsletter 2
06/02/07

Cub relocation


Londolozi
Newsletters

Death of a Legend
17/08/09


Newsletter 20
10/02/09

Newsletter 15
17/08/08

Painted Wolves


Newsletter 13
11/04/08

Response to Elephant Trust
by Daryl Balfour


Newsletter 12
09/04/08

Elephant Trust