Back when my parents where in grade school, the Jacques Cousteau specials, the original Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, The True Life Adventures, and Flipper where among the biggest TV shows and documentaries that captivated the American public with their ability to connect people to the natural world the beauty and power of nature that could not be seen anywhere else. In fact, some of these popular shows like Flipper went on to encourage sympathy towards the public over certain animals that were once considered to be either pest or simply, dangerous. As time went on in years after the last Flipper show ended, these shows and documentaries would go on expose the problems that animals were facing out in the wild like habitat destruction, poaching, and over-fishing, issues that may have inspired the first environmental groups of the 60’s and 70’s to be established in hopes to encourage the public to take responsibility for environmental wrong doings and start caring for the planet and it’s wild places and inhabitants. In the United States, such movements and public concerns about various animal issues had led to the establishment of three federal laws (The Animal Welfare Act, The Endangered Species Act, and the Marine Mammal Protection Act), all of which are dedicated to protecting animals and their habitats. Today, in this ever changing world where celebrities like Snooki, Heidi Montag, the cast of Teen Mom and the Kardashians continue to make headlines thanks to “being famous for being famous”, there are some amazing people from all walks of life who strive on making a difference and follow the footsteps that the late Steve Irwin has left behind and become “wildlife warriors” in their own right.
Why wildlife heroes? It’s because these people (Julie Scardina, Jeff Corwin, Dyan DeNapoli, and SeaWorld’s Animal Rescue Team, ect.) continue to make a difference in every shape as well as on every level. Some of these people, like Julie Scardina for example, continues to educate the public on wildlife by showing off some of her fellow animal ambassadors on a number of TV shows while talking to her audience about each and every one of them. Meanwhile, veterinarians like Dr. Chris Dold, along with SeaWorld’s animal care rescue work around the clock to care for sick, injured, and orphaned animals in need of rehabilitation which can last from several weeks to several years depending on the individual cases while trainers like Abby Stone, Laura Surovik and many others thrive on welcoming visitors of all ages to experience animals up close and personal from the comforts of a zoological setting where the experience is a fun, safe, and educational experience even though the trainers know all the risks of working with various animals such as killer whales. And Finally, there are conservationists like Dyan DeNapoli and Diana Reiss who continue to study and understand the incredible world of animals for as much as we know about popular species like penguins and dolphins, there still so much we have yet to know and knowing more about them is one of the ways that would save them from dying out.
In the end, these people may not get a lot of press comparing to their famous counterparts, but they continue to inspire us all on every level to love and appreciate wildlife and most importantly, make a difference on every level. So why idolize Snooki or the Kardashians when there are people who truly make a difference everyday?
Big thanks to Lexi for helping me come up with this blog entry. Thanks again,