Vultures
Photo Credit: Casey Pratt for Love Africa Marketing

The severity of the challenges that face Southern Africa’s vultures is becoming ever more tangible, so everything is being done to protect them.

 

South Africa (15 April 2021) – We are all invited to join an online charity concert to support Wildlife ACT, a leading conservation NGO, who work to protect vultures in Southern Africa.

The event is FREE to join with the option of donating before, during or after the concert.

Voice, Art & Social, a non-profit organisation based in Luxembourg, have planned, organised and will be hosting a LIVE streamed fundraiser called “Vulture Voices in Concert” to support Wildlife ACT’s work to save severely threatened Vultures from extinction in Southern Africa. 

The funds raised will support Wildlife ACT’s vital work to save Vultures from extinction in Southern Africa. This will include investing in regional conservation education and awareness, a rapid response unit to react to poisoning events, training field operatives on how to handle poisoned birds to ensure they are saved and the continued fine-scale monitoring of the population to ascertain impacts over time. 

Vultures play a critical role in abating the ever-increasing global risk of pathogen spillovers to humans. This is of particular relevance at a time when the world has been significantly affected by a zoonotic pandemic – rattling our global health systems, devastating economies and changing our livelihoods. 

The crucial ecosystem services that vultures provide in our environment is grossly underestimated and goes largely under-appreciated. These incredible scavengers are remarkably efficient at disposing of rotting carcasses and reducing disease spread amongst wildlife, livestock and across to humans. Without the presence of vultures, carcasses will remain exposed to the environment for weeks. The resultant build-up of extremely harmful diseases and bacteria such as anthrax, botulism and rabies can have an impact not only on our wildlife and livestock populations but on human populations as well. 

Of the six true vulture species occurring in South Africa, all are now classified as either Critically Endangered or Endangered. All of these species have experienced major declines in recent times, and in many areas, up to 90% of the breeding populations have been wiped out. 

Due to their wide-ranging habits, vultures are exposed to a wide variety of threats, including poisoning, habitat degradation, population fragmentation, limited food availability, human disturbance, and electrical infrastructure collisions and electrocutions. One of the biggest impacts in the region is the use of poisons to kill vultures to harvest their body parts for belief base use and traditional medicines.

The event will be a live online concert featuring 12 musical talents (Marvin Scondo, Katiuska Mclean, Regi, Isabel Nolte, Vojtech Zakouril, Katja Oseloff, Duci, George Philippart, Mara van Dyck, Lisa Mariotto, Thierry Mersch), many former Voice of Germany contestants, as well as talent from the Zululand region of South Africa, the African artist Kwenza, who will be releasing a new single for the concert. 

George Philippart, Musician 

“On behalf of myself and my fellow musician colleagues, it is our great pleasure to sing for this important cause. Music has played an important social role as long as human beings have roamed this earth. We hope to bring more awareness with our singing about the importance of saving our world’s wildlife which we are a part of. We are proud to support Wildlife ACT’s programs with our concert to ensure that the critically endangered South African Vultures will survive.”

Chris Kelly, Conservation Director, Wildlife ACT. 

“In South Africa, Vultures are persecuted directly through poisoning, habitat degradation, population fragmentation, limited food availability, human disturbance, as well as electrical infrastructure collisions and electrocutions. Of the six true vulture species occurring in South Africa, all are now classified as either Critically Endangered or Endangered. All of these species have experienced major declines in recent times and in many areas, up to 90% of the breeding populations have been wiped out. The severity of the challenges that face our vultures is becoming ever more tangible and seemingly confounding but, together with the Zululand Vulture Project, Wildlife ACT has founded solutions that work towards stabilizing and securing  Zululand’s vulture populations, which makes us confident that we will save the vultures of South Africa . These are South Africa’s birds, they are Africa’s birds, they are your birds. We have to do something, even if it is just to save ourselves.” 

Brigitta Best, President, Voice, Art and Social asbl Luxembourg

“Voice, Art and Social is proud to have organised this online charity concert to help save South African Vultures from extinction and we are extremely thankful to all participating artists for their support. 

How vulnerable our ecosystem is and how much we all depend on a balanced and well functioning natural world is experienced by all of us right now with this zoonotic pandemic – rattling our global health systems, devastating economies and changing our livelihoods. Having personally volunteered for a month with Wildlife ACT, seeing first hand the magnificence of wildlife but also the destructive effect human actions have, has opened my eyes about the importance of conserving our natural world and wildlife.”

You can find out how to join below.


Sources: Wildlife ACT – Supplied
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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