Animal Poaching - Killing the Animals We Should Love

Over the years, people get confused on what animal poaching is, and what animal hunting is.  Animal poaching is illegal animal hunting, in this case, they take elephant tusks and other things such as skin. They then sell these things for money, or even process them to make something else. There are multiple reasons why animals are hunted and killed by poachers. One of  them is religion, they think of some animals as pests, that they shouldn’t be on their land. So they hunt them out of the land. People get into fights about this because some religions see animals as sacred animals , almost as gods, so they try to protect them from the hunters or poachers.

A few days ago, I  interviewed a former hunter, he was easy to reach out to considering that he lives in my house. This person is named Matthew Ossowski, otherwise known as my dad. He started to hunt before I was born. This is how the interview went.

First I asked about his past, how he started, etc. He started with “I was 26 when i started hunting.” He continued to say that he started because he learned how to shoot a bow and arrow. His friends were into hunting and he wanted to try and see if he liked it. He said when he was there he didn’t see any other people or hunters other than the people he was with. I then asked him what he hunted during that time. He replied that he only hunted overpopulated animals such as deer and squirrel, but he wants to go to Australia to hunt kangaroo because they are really overpopulated there.He also said that he saw other animals when hunting such as bears, foxes, and hawks.  With his friends he hunted in the Poconos and only ever wanted to hunt there (in the US). He also explained that he only ever thought of legal hunting.

I then started to get into the topic of animal poaching, I asked him what the difference is between animal poaching and hunting. He replied with “ A lot of the time poaching is, your trespassing, you know, you would be hunting out of season. A lot of people, like people up in the mountains, they poach to pretty much eat. Not like say in places like Africa, where they poach to kill trophy animals, you know like elephants for their trunks or whatnot. Poaching is just people not following the rules.” I then proceeded to ask him if he thought poaching was wrong. He said “ 99.9% of the time yes, however if you're doing it to feed your family because you're poor, you know legally yeah it's wrong, if you're just doing it to eat, okay. But if you're doing it just to kill something or make money or something. I don't agree with that.

I then asked him a series of questions about animal poaching and his opinion on the topic, while answering these questions, he added on to his previous statement. “That's the other thing about poaching, sometimes with poaching their using weapons, that are, that I don't agree with, like machine guns and things like that. I don't agree with that at all.” I asked him if he ever thought about stopping poaching, he stated “ No because the poaching where I go, I agree with. However, if I had the resources and time, I might.”

Animal poaching is a very serious topic for me because I love all animals, I dont have the heart to kill something, but I do have the heart to stop something from being killed. I believe that poaching (the bad poaching, killing trophy animals) should stop. People kill animals only for price, for money, are disobeying the rules of hunting, they go and kill something out of season, they take their trunks, then leave the body there to rot.

 Rhinos in africa are being killed. There are things we can do to stop it, but there are things that this does to the environment also.Such as the food chain, animals being killed and become extinct. While this happens another animal dies because they can’t get food to eat.  All around the world there are organizations trying to stop this from happening. They go around the world to keep poachers away from the animals, although it is working, just not enough.

In my research, I have learned multiple things. I’ve learned about hunting, and poaching. I’ve learned that even though we use some of these things we take from the animals, we mainly hurt them. However I still question why we do it. We don’t need the horns or trunks of rhinos or trunks of elephants. I hope that in the future i find the answer to this question and maybe change other people's minds too.

For more information please visit my Annotated Bibliography.

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