Help Save 100 Hippos in Colombia from The Risk of an Extermination Program

Help Save 100 Hippos in Colombia from The Risk of an Extermination Program

18,134 personas firmaron. ¡Ayuda a conseguir 25,000!
Petición para
President of Colombia y

¿Por qué es importante esta petición?

Spanish version here

It's public knowledge that the largest population of hippos in the wild outside Africa is currently living in Colombia, in the larger area of the Magdalena Medio river and basins. Originally starting as a group of four hippos that Colombia's infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar illegally brought to his estate decades ago, the situation escalated when Escobar was gunned down by the authorities and his empire fell. His assets were seized by the Colombian government, but the authorities did nothing to relocate the animals and offer them safe harbor. Instead, they were allowed to escape and they found the perfect environment to breed and thrive.

Now this group of hippos is esteemed to have 100 members and while the impact of their presence poses issues that need to be addressed and solved, I join the undersigned to respectfully call on you, Mr. President, and on Colombia's Minister of the Environment to:

  1. Recognize that, regardless of the fact that they may be considered an invasive species, these hippos were once victims of the illegal trade in exotic animals and now risk being victims again of a campaign of extermination that some biologists and so-called experts in the country suggest that is necessary.
  2. Consider that a federal court order in the U.S. declared Colombia's hippos as “interested persons” with legal rights, which, while having no effect in Colombia's legal system, should inspire Colombian officials to also recognize them as individuals with legal personhood and the right to live and to be properly protected from any risk—namely that of facing a possible extermination campaign under the guise of "population management".
  3. Decide that killing these animals is not an option to consider and instead work with animal protection and nature conservation groups to implement ways of controlling the breeding of these hippos through the most advanced and clinically effective methods of chemical castration of males.
  4. Agree to collaborate with the Colombian Hippos legal representative, the attorney Luis Domingo Gómez, and with the Namigni Animal Sanctuary and other animal protection organizations to support them in creating a sanctuary dedicated to the protection of these hippos.
  5. Understand the fact that Colombia should protect these animals instead of making them victims of human negligence and abuse twice, and that this also poses a great opportunity for the country: if Colombia protects hippos in a way that is safe for them and environmentally sustainable, through a collaboration of state authorities and private animal protection initiatives, this example becomes something inspiring for the world.
  6. Appreciate the opportunities for Colombia's tourism, the millions of dollars that can be generated for local businesses and populations, and the potential of tax revenue that can also be generated for the Colombian State due to the proposed solution outlined by Mr. Luis Domingo Gómez and the Namigni Animal Sanctuary. Ethically and sustainably protecting the hippos at a sanctuary can attract the attention and visit of countless international tourists that would be interested in visiting a compassionate, sustainable, fully eco-friendly, and social-impact project to protect amazing animals that are treasured by millions of people around the world.

Fundamentally, Mr. President and Minister Correa, we're calling on the Colombian Government to find and execute a compassionate, sustainable, and even profitable way to protect the hippos while also solving the matters related to the impact that having them unaddressed and uncontrolled is causing.

18,134 personas firmaron. ¡Ayuda a conseguir 25,000!