Image via Adobe Stock

Life in the time of lockdown: How wildlife is reclaiming its territory

Wildlife in South Africa and around the world are flourishing, and it’s mostly due to the fact that humans are indoors.


Image via Adobe Stock

Now that all the humans are forced to remain indoors, wildlife in South Africa and abroad, is coming out to play.

African penguins exploring Simon’s Town

African penguins also known as Jackass penguins are an endangered species and Boulder’s beach remains one of the few places left where these animals can be found. These intelligent animals, usually spotted on Boulder’s Beach, were seen marching through the quiet streets of the South Peninsula. With few cars on the road and a decrease in sound pollution, these flightless birds were free to roam the streets of Simon’s Town.

There is definitely a sense of freedom and confidence that can be observed by these animals as they make their way through our concrete jungles. Another incredible sighting of animals “taking over” human territory was a big five animal.

The lion sleeps tonight

With few visitors making their way to South Africa’s largest game park, a pride of lions was able to take a nap in the middle of the road. The Kruger National Park, which closed its doors to the public last month, has become a ghost town and a paradise for nature. These large cats, considered to be one of Africa’s wildest animals, definitely enjoyed a break from what is usually a favourite tourist destination. During lockdown, the park has been live streaming game drives to allow people to enjoy the safari experience in the comfort of their homes. Perhaps this will become the “new normal?”

The South African Department of Environment, Forestry and Fishery announced last week that there was a decrease in rhino poaching, another positive win for nature as humans are made to stay indoors. There are many other positive impacts as a result of a decrease in human activity around the world.

Global lockdown impact on the environment

In Italy it was reported that the canals in Venice, which are usually a tourist hotspot, are the cleanest that they have been in decades.

Pictures released from NASA suggest that the virus has decreased China’s nitrogen dioxide pollution, since the country went into lockdown. Mallard ducks were seen wandering through the streets of Paris, sika deer were spotted walking the streets of Japan. The list of animals taking over cities across the globe is almost endless.

Imagine what impact humans could have on the environment if we were mindfully, consciously making an effort to reduce our carbon footprints? The virus which has pushed humans indoors, proves that behavioural changes can be a positive factor to reduce our CO2 emissions which in turn will slow down the effect of global warming on the earth.

Take the Earth Day 20/20 Footprints for the Future Pledge and show your commitment to a more sustainable and environmentally conscious lifestyle: www.earthday.org/20-20-pledge

This content has been created as part of our freelancer relief programme. We are supporting journalists and freelance writers impacted by the economic slowdown caused by #lockdownlife.

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