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Zimbabwe Bird Sanctuary Has 400 Species, Not Enough Tourists

A fish eagle swoops over the water to grab a fish in its talons and then flies to its nest.

Nearby are a martial eagle, a black eagle, an Egyptian vulture and hundreds of other birds. With an estimated 400 species of birds on an idyllic spot on Zimbabwe’s Lake Chivero, about 40 kilometers south of Harare, the Kuimba Shiri bird sanctuary has been drawing tourists for more than 15 years.

The southern African country’s only bird park has survived tumultuous times, including violent land invasions and a devastating economic collapse but the outbreak of coronavirus is proving a stern test.

“I thought I had survived the worst, but this coronavirus is something else,” said owner Gary Strafford. “One-third of our visitors are from China. They stopped coming in February … and when we were shut down in March, that was just unbelievable.”

A lifelong bird enthusiast, Strafford, 62, established the center for injured, orphaned and abandoned birds in 1992, and tourism has kept the park going.

With Zimbabwe’s inflation rising to over 750 percent, tourism establishments are battling a vicious economic downturn worsened by the new coronavirus travel restrictions.

Zimbabwe’s tourism was already facing problems. The country recorded just over 2 million visitors in 2019, an 11 percent decline from the previous year, according to official figures. However, tourism remained one of the country’s biggest foreign currency earners, along with minerals and tobacco.

Now tourism “is dead because of coronavirus,” said Tinashe Farawo, the spokesman for the country’s national parks agency. National parks and other animal sanctuaries such as Kuimba Shiri are battling to stay afloat, he said.

“We are in trouble. All along we have been relying on tourism to fund our conservation … now what do we do?” he asked.

Kuimba Shiri, which means singing bird in Zimbabwe’s Shona language, was closed for more than three months. It’s the longest time the bird sanctuary, located in one of the global sites protected under the United Nations Convention on Wetlands, has been shut.

On a recent weekday, the only sound of life at the place usually teeming with children on school trips was that of singing birds perched on the edges of large enclosures. Horses, zebras and sheep fed on grass and weeds on the lakeshore.

A parrot standing on a flowerpot at the entrance repeatedly shouted “Hello!”

“He misses people, especially the children,” said Strafford, who established Kuimba Shiri on the 30-acre spot on Chivero, the main reservoir for Harare. Now it is home to many rare species including falcons, flamingos and vultures.

“This place is a dream place for me,” he said.

Things turned nightmarish however when then president, the late Robert Mugabe, launched an often-violent land redistribution program in which farms owned by whites were seized for redistribution to landless Blacks in 2000.

Animal sanctuaries were not spared and Kuimba Shiri was targeted “30 to 40 times,” said Strafford. Eventually, the sanctuary was endorsed by Mugabe and returned to a measure of stability.

In 2009, Zimbabwe’s economy collapsed as hyperinflation reached 500 billion percent, according to the International Monetary Fund. The sanctuary struggled to make ends meet. Many birds starved to death while those that could fend for themselves were released into the wild.

“We sold our vehicles and a tractor to feed the birds. When it really got desperate we had to kill our horses,” he said.

Now, a decade later, Strafford is again being forced to sell some items as coronavirus and a new economic crisis take their toll. A land excavator, a boat, a truck, a tractor and sheep are among the items he hopes to urgently sell.

But there is some hope. As Zimbabwe relaxes some of its restrictions, the sanctuary is now able to open to limited numbers of visitors.

Now, a decade later, Strafford is again being forced to sell some items as coronavirus and a new economic crisis take their toll. A land excavator, a boat, a truck, a tractor and sheep are among the items he hopes to urgently sell.

But there is some hope. As Zimbabwe relaxes some of its restrictions, the sanctuary is now able to open to limited numbers of visitors.

On a recent weekend, Strafford displayed the talents of his trained falcons and other raptors to a small group for the first time since March.

Strafford enthusiastically described the various traits of the birds and supervised as a barn owl perched on a 5-year-old boy’s gloved hand.

“Everything got to start afresh,” he said after the show. “I have started training the birds again. We are beginning to fly again!”

VOA

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Top

India COVID-19 News

1 December 2020
India COVID-19 New Cases 31,118 in Last 24 Hours

Total Cases: 9,431,691 Deaths 137,139

COVID-19 Vaccine Related News:
BIONTECH vaccine-PFIZER
ASTRAZENECA -Oxford University
Moderna vaccine,UK
Sputnik Vaccine,Russia
Wuhan Institute of Biological Products,China 
Sinopharm in China
Janssen's Vaccine,UK 
Gamaleya Research Institute, Russia 
All these vaccines are in trial conditions and final trial results are coming soon.

How to identify Fake News or Messages on Social Media 

Beware of Fake News and Fake Messages on Social Media

Always follow websites or social media platforms of traditional media outlets whether newspapers, magazines,Television News Channels or Radio Stations and authentic online only media outlets.They still maintain journalism excellence and stress on reportorial talent.On the other hand, fake news websites run by people with non journalism background and promote their own ideology with fake news and disinformations and obviously conspiracy theories.

But unfortunately mainstream media also manipulates news to establish their story angle.There were various instances when News papers and TV Channels promoted fake news/conspiracy theories in the form of out of context or manipulated pictures/videos and distorted informations.

Always check the URL of any website.Some fake news websites look like the orginal and popular one the same layout,Logo but if you check the URL you may find extra words like if the orginal website's URL is www.xxx.com the duplicate one might be www.xxx.com.co or something like that so first check the URL for authentic informations.

Check whether photos are original or photoshopped.Check Google images for authenticity.You can find help from Google Reverse Images search.

Check the news sources from other websites whether they picked up the story or not.

Whether the website layout is little bit clumsy and obviously grammatical mistakes and spelling mistakes and excessive use of Sex related and sensational and hate stories.Because sex and hate sells.

Follow official websites relating to COVID-19

WHO Clarifies the disinformation about the virus:
COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates
Cold Weather and Snow can not kill the new coronavirus
Taking a Hot Bath Does Not Prevent COVID-19
COVID-19 Can not be transmitted through mosquito bites

Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body. Spraying such substances can be harmful to clothes or mucous membranes (i.e. eyes, mouth)

According to World Health Organization (WHO): Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water

Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth . If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early.

Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover.

Follow WHO guidelines

www.who.int

When you follow COVID-19 related news and messages from social media then check and recheck it before consuming it.Follow journalism mantra: if your mother says she loves you, check it out.

Most of the messages or informations quote different organizations like WHO, UNICEF, UNDP,Cambridge University  or other well known institutes,organizations or individual to authenticate the messeges.Check official websites of these organizations  if stories are repeated there

Forwarding messages from unknown sources or little known sources, it would be better to ignore it.

Check whether any logo like UNICEF or WHO or other organizations used in the messages which look similar to original logo.

These type of messages are full of Grammatical mistakes and spelling mistakes which are quite uncommon in original messages.

Don't rely on viral social media messages such as Coronavirus Infected Indian Currencies of Rs.500 and Rs.2,000 Notes Found, Muslim Man Spit in Food At Indian Restaurant.....Always Check Authentic Sources.

Some fake messages pretend to be real one like unofficial Twitter handle of international media organizations like BBC,CNN,Washinton Post, New York Times-check the official Twitter handles of media outlets.

You can identify fake messages if the message requests you to share it.

Beware of Fake News or Fake Photos/Videos Relating to Communal Hatred

Always check the fact checking sites if you have some doubts about the authenticity of any information or picture.

www.boomlive.in

www.altnews.in

https://check4spam.com

https://smhoaxslayer.com

www.factchecker.in

www.allsides.com

www.factcheck.org

www.newsbusters.org

www.politifact.com

www.snopes.com

www.propublica.org

The Same Method Applies to You Tube Videos Check the Source the credibility of the Source.To Check Fake You Tube Videos Check and Recheck the sources. Does the person have the legal right to the video posted? Did that person capture the video? Whether it has been altered?

But due to advancement of technology we can not really wipe out fake news.According to experts advent of  Artificial Intelligence(AI) some companies small or big one developing  technologies that can  lay digitally created script to anybody's voice  even words,sentences never said by the person.Even they a.re developing a technology which can create fake video footage,images,audios like originals.So be cautious! Rumour-mongers are active everywhere whether in physical world or cyber world.

For any further information relating to fake news and how-to search authentic informations from the internet write to us info@crimeandmoreworld.com or Whats App:+916289017966

Our COVID-19 related Stories

https://www.crimeandmoreworld.com/tag/coronavirus/

 

COVID-19 Related Conspiracy Theories

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