We start today with the news that the Army are on the streets in 2 local towns, it was reported that they were giving the police a day off! The army are also in the area to disinfect the streets, they started on Saturday working there way East to our Provinces Capitol. this is a large area and nobody is sure how long it will take, if they are calling in on urbanisations off the coast road, going inland to villages or just doing the main towns. We have instructions to not walk dogs when they spray and to keep all doors and window closed for the day. The brief notice I was given was quite vague so I will have to look into it for more information or perhaps they will issue more details as they approach us. They did say that although it is not poisonousness they weren’t sure what the exact chemical it is that the army are using! They don’t know if it will damage paint and some surfaces, if you have to leave home as an essential worker then to wear a mask at all times. What is not clear is if they are spraying from the air (planes) or on the streets with a machine, this leaves me thinking of all the feral cats around, every area has them to keep mice down and also if sprayed in the air then all the other wildlife and insects, the trees and plants too if the chemical is corrosive.
Speaking of animals it is reported that misinformation, rumours, and gossip have continued to feed mass hysteria and panic, in Peru locals are attempting to fight CoViD-19 by attacking communities of bats despite the fact that the virus still hasn’t been decisively proven to have originated from them. The Peruvian government issued a statement warning residents to stop killing bats after gangs were found to be torching them in their caves. Peru’s National Service of Wild Forests and Fauna (SERFOR) said: “We must not distort the situation due to the pandemic. Bats are not our enemies, 70 percent of the bat species in the world feed off insects, many of which are harmful to agriculture and our health, like mosquitoes that spread dengue and other diseases”. The agency explained that bats are actually beneficial to humans helping to combat deadly viruses including dengue which have continued unabated while the world’s attention is on containing the CoViD-19 pandemic. They also told people to abstain from eating wild animals or using their flesh for medicinal purposes.
Some exotic species are seen as delicacies in some Asian and Pacific Island nations due to unproven medicinal benefits and is seen as a symbol of social status, the misconception that bat soup is a popular menu in China and that bat soup is “responsible” for the coronavirus outbreak has not been verified! Some scientists believe that the virus may have originated in bat microbes but transformed into deadly human pathogens through an intermediary animal such as pangolins. There are laws in place in China to protect Pangolins an endangered species, with 10 years in prison, but research shows that worldwide it is “the most poached and trafficked mammal in the world.” mainly for medicines. The consumption of medicines containing Bear Bile has also increased after reports it was helping as a cure for people with the virus. This mistreatment of animals is I believe a crisis in itself, we like to defer blame to countries like China but the truth is hunting and poaching are part of some western society too.
Coming back to the imminent disinfection of our streets, I am hoping it will not be sprayed from above, our birds have nested and many chicks are around. The smaller the species the greater the effects will be to them, my greatest concern is the fact that the local council in their announcement of precautions said they didn’t know what chemicals the army were using! This situation summons up the general feeling amongst the masses in lock down at the moment worldwide, that of being out of control and having authorities to do what they want. As we know from experience their decisions don’t always work out best for the majority and also rarely consider the effects on our wildlife and fauna, there is often no foresight in what they do, or a searching for safer alternatives.
So taking all these depressive facts of the above into consideration, I remind myself that information is wise but like everything, there is an opposite like love/hate and cruelty/kindness etc. I choose to put myself in the opposite of fear back into hope and faith. Although many think this is futile, it is a choice we are in control of. The more people choose a balanced positive outlook with an aim of creating a balanced society for the planet and all its inhabitants, the quicker we will create a better world that we all crave. Please stay safe and take precautions to protect yourself and loved ones including taking care of your mental health💜