New Cycle Starts shortly for Cape fur seals
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From: Seal alert-Sa
Date: October 10, 2006
Dear All Cape Fur Seal Supporters,
Seal Alert-SA works and reviews its past successes based on the cycle of the seals. In a month from now, pupping season begins again and with it time to reflect for the coming 12 months.
Hats off to all of you that supported Seal Alert-SA over the past year. I believe our small group actually did the impossible. In trying to find, the ultimate solution for Cape fur seals, we have put all other well funded, with their millions of supporters to shame. So what did we achieve?
• We started the cycle, with getting a pup rehab facility together and to establish a method of group pup rehab. Although the pups have shown that one bond-per person is only possible. We did get two other pups very far into over a quarter of their rehab. This gives me hope that we can master a group pup rehab. Mumkin is doing great (sole survivor from 8) and is fishing every night already. The boat worked well, disentangling and saving over 400 seals.
• We got De Beers, the world largest gem diamond producer to publicly announce their opposition to seal culling after 60 years of culling on diamond restricted land.
• Our complaint to CITES will achieve results, although it may take some time yet (this was an extremely important development).
• We really turned the heat-up on Namibia's sealing activities (something none of the big anti-hunt groups have been able to do for years), front page news, television, radio and print. Good solid no nonsense hard-hitting articles.
• EU Seal ban, I believe will eventually include Cape fur seals.
• Our petition of over 30 000 (more than SA fishermen) to ban guns at sea, will be effective, although it too will take time.
• Getting seals back on islands, is almost a reality, with head scientist agreeing to 40% of the largest island's coastline.
• We also have a complaint with the City Council, regarding restricting seals to small awash rocks (and now scientific evidence that over-crowding on these tiny awash rocks leads to 75% pup mortality in two weeks and is attracting white sharks into bathing areas).
• We took IFAW and WWF-SA to task, including making sure their major sponsor Sanlam Life Assurance is aware of their lack of commitment to seal conservation.
We start next cycle, well equipped and ready to go. This sadly brings me to the following. It seems the greatest resistance to our efforts came not from Namibia or the sealers, but the actual organizations raising millions to help seals. So evident has this become that a line now divides Cape fur seals from Harp Seals. If you support the one, you dont support the other. In the recent EU development I was told to back off attacking those supporting a 2 species EU ban, instead of a 33 species ban it was always supposed to be. This will never make sense, and as such I have lost a lot of support.
One of my supporters just informed me an email is going around that Seal Alert-SA is using supporter funds for personal use. One can only guess where it is coming from. Truly amazing how low these organizations will stoop. I wish them luck in their attempt to discredit Seal Alert-SA. Although I must admit, judging by the support I get, this misinformation must be working. If it helps convince you either way, understand that the less support I receive the more seals die, that could be saved and that none of the above would have happened without Seal Alert-SA. I have dedicated my life to these seals, and can assure all 100% goes to the seals. As a one-man organization not a cent goes to admin, salaries or any such things. Every cent either goes directly on saving seals or equipment to save them. I live and breath seals, and this you can take or leave.
As supporter funding has virtually dried up. Seal Alert-SA which has always funded itself since 1999, will continue to do so. It was hoped that by the end of this year's cycle we would have a large support base. Events and perhaps my style has prevented this. Therefore prior to detailing next year's objectives, could those who are still Cape fur seal supporters simply drop me an email, as I wish to update my mailing list, with only true seal supporters.
For the Seals
Francois Hugo Seal Alert-SA