New project unites people of Ukraine to protect sturgeons
Sturgeons are among the oldest fish on the planet. They have been around for more than 250 million years and outlived the dinosaurs, but today they are among the most endangered species on the planet. Illegal fishing, principally for their caviar, is a serious threat to sturgeons, together with loss of habitat. Today five of the six species that are still found in Ukraine are under threat of extinction. Human intervention has destroyed most of the spawning sites along the major rivers of the country, making the sturgeon particularly vulnerable as they reproduce only once every few years.
The project "Sturgeon calls for help" will support the implementation of an action plan for conserving Danube sturgeons that was adopted by the Council of Europe. The project actions aim to raise awareness and engage civil society with the conservation of the still viable sturgeon populations and animal protection in general. Interesting facts, TV shows, quizzes and interactive games will educate people how to protect the endangered wild species and how to co-exist with wildlife in general.
"It is remarkable that the sturgeon are a symbol of the campaign - these unique species outlived the dinosaurs, but now face extinction. People are the problem – and people are the solution. It requires a conscious attitude to both consumption and trade", said Nataliia Gozak, WWF-Ukraine expert.
The project "Sturgeon calls for help" is a continuation in Ukraine of a global partnership between Discovery Communications and WWF. "Animal Planet is a channel that does not only talk about animals. It pays attention to the relationships between the world of fauna and man. It teaches how to understand pets, respect the wild nature and empathize with its inhabitants. I am sure that fans of the channel cannot remain indifferent to the destinies of animals - only people can help, and the campaign invites them to active participation in protecting the nature of Ukraine and the whole planet", says Anna Pak, Managing Director of Discovery Networks in North-Eastern Europe.
Various campaigns and initiatives can be accessed on the project webpage, WWF-Ukraine’s website, Happy Paw or Animal Planet’s channels to follow or participate. Volunteers can take care of animals in the nearest animal shelter, get involved in different activities for animal protection and nature conservation. More about the initiatives can be found on the project website (in Ukrainian): http://www.zovosetra.com.ua/