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Newsletter 17
28/10/08

Invest in Tigers


Seatao

Hello Friends & Tiger supporters 

This Newsletter is addressed to the hundreds of Indian conservationists who have corresponded with me this last year. 

My apologies that I cannot answer each and every e-mail, but there are some common threads running through all your letters. 

Firstly, as many of you point out, 22% of Indian people live below the poverty line. These rural people need the forests for their survival, so does the tiger. What is bad, is if the forests are converted to agriculture, then the tiger will lose and ultimately so will the people. 

The key is to conserve the forests for the benefit of the people and the tiger in a symbiotic relationship.


Seatao swimming

In other words, make the tiger benefit the rural people.  

At the moment, the tiger doesn't benefit the communities. It kills the people's stock and even sometimes kills the people. In turn the people take its prey and their domestic stock take the grass that is needed for the tigers prey.

 Poaching of tigers is rife. 

How do you turn this situation around in a country with 1,13 billion people and a growth rate of 1.38%? Not easily, I assure you. 

The first point to realize is that the people in charge of your tigers are failing in their attempt to save it. 

Many of you have told me that the system is so entrenched, that it is impossible to change. If this is so, then you must accept that tourists that visit India in the future, will come to India to view the culture and the temples. 

Parks like Kanha, Ranthambore, James Corbett and Panna will follow the way of Sariska.

Once the magnetic animal, the tiger, is lost to the park, so is the tourist potential and so too is the vital income needed to save the tiger, conserve its prey and protect its habitat. 

Indian businessmen are some of the finest entrepreneurs in the world. Indeed, the 4th, 5th and 6th richest men in the world, are all Indian. The steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal and the Ambani brothers, have a combined wealth of 130 billion dollars. 

It is here that the best chance of saving the tiger lies, not in poorly paid bureaucratic forestry officials. 

It will take money and entrepreneurial skills to save the tiger in its present state, India has both. Whether it has the vision, is another question. 

Many of you have cited the Cons Corp investment in Indian parks as an example. My brother was a founder member of Cons Corp, so I know something about it. 

If Cons Corp are shut out from large parts of the parks because there is illegal poaching in these areas, if they are prevented from going off road or driving at night, if in short they are unable to show their guests the tiger, their investment will fail, simple as that. 

The investment I have in mind is different from this.
Try  to get a long term lease of the park which includes:

  • The exclusive tourists rights to the entire park.

  • The right to put lodges on the periphery, not in the core of the park.

  • The right to put in ecologically sound roads.

  • The right to fence the park (maybe Lakshmi Mittal will help you)

  • The right to manage the tiger (It is your responsibility, not the government's to conserve the tiger. This means that you can habituate,  film, photograph, catch and relocate the tiger as per your management plan).

  • The right to manage the prey and the habitat of the tiger in the park, i.e. open or shut water points, clear bush, restore indigenous forest, combat erosion, re-route bad roads.

  • The right to enter into partnership with surrounding communities, so they become partners in the investment. This is essential.

  • The anti poaching must be your responsibility. 

I can hear many of you screaming from the rooftops, not possible! not possible!
Varty is mad! 

Under the apartheid government, the Kruger National Park was run by bureaucrats whose minds were closed to any form of change. 

When the ANC took power, the late Enos Mabuza introduced my brother and I to Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki. Sitting in my house at Londolozi, my brother and I suggested to them to privatize the Kruger National Park. 

The idea was accepted and today several powerful private individuals have large exclusive private concessions in the Kruger National Park. For these they have paid millions and millions of dollars. 

Here people from all over the world can come and admire the wild life that was previously not available to them. In turn the National Parks have substantial amounts of money to conserve the thousands of animals that make up this paradise. 

I am not a businessman. Where my skills are, is in setting up the management of the park, the tiger and the habitat. You must first gain control of the park and then we can move to the second stage.

Do I believe you can achieve this. 
The answer is no unless you can do the following:

  • Attract big money to the cause.

  • Produce a business plan which is profitable. (Don't make the mistake of thinking that individuals, corporations or hotel groups will invest, because they want to save the tiger. They will invest because its profitable.)

  • Gain control of parks for an extended period of time.

(In other words, don't expect the government to have vision. Only money will change the system.) 

I would not invest a single cent on a lodge near a park where the main attraction, the tiger, is on the decline. This would be like investing in a gold mine where the gold is nearly exhausted. 

Finally,
"People have brought the tiger to the brink of extinction, only people can bring it back".

Love, light and peace
JV

 

Tread lightly on the Earth

info@jvbigcats.co.za
Copyright 2007 @jvbigcats  All rights reserved


Newsletters


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Newsletter 152
14/10/17
JV's response to Elayna Kinley letter

Newsletters 151
29/09/17
Running on empty

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14/09/17
The Survivor

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In pursuit of Alan Root

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Open letter re schools plus Panna cubs

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17/07/17
It's Finished

Newsletters 146
31/05/17
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A Defining Moment

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The World is Changing

Newsletter 131
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Newsletter 129
22/03/16
An Open Letter to Head United Nations

Newsletter 128
15/03/16
An Open Letter to Carte Blanche

Newsletter 127
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Satellite Tracking

Newsletter 126
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Lightning strikes 3 times

Newsletter 125
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The Break Out

Newsletter 124
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Bad Tigers

Newsletter 123
01/10/15
Tiger Boy's Journey

Newsletter 122
13/09/15
Give it a Name

Newsletter 121
10/09/15
Driven Hunts

Newsletter 120
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Creative Conservation

Newsletter 119
12/08/15
Sariska from birth till death

Newsletter 118
11/08/15
Real Hunters

Newsletter 117
07/08/15
An Open Letter to the President: Operation Wild Lion

Newsletter 116
03/08/15
An Open Letter to Theo Bronkhorst

Newsletter 115
28/07/15
Cruel Nations

Newsletter 114
08/07/15
Subspecies or no subspecies

Newsletter 113
11/06/15
Tigers Moving Forward

Newsletter 112
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Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Newsletter 111
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Don't Shoot the Messenger

Newsletter 110
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The Hunters

Newsletter 109
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Gaia or God?

Newsletter 108
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The Healing Power of Cats

Newsletter 107
18/02/15
Goddess Gaia

Newsletter 106
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Ambassador Cats

Newsletter 105
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Blondes have more fun

Invitation
09/01/15
Gaining ground for tigers

Newsletter 103
14/12/14
Tibo's Dilemma

Newsletter 102
05/12/14
Wilderness Man

Newsletter 101
25/11/14
Sariska fathers cubs with white Tigress Tibo

Newsletter 100
20/11/14
Cheetah Survival

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Extract from JV's speech on Corbett's Freedom Day

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Tiger Corbett's Release

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Corbett's Journey

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Bush School: Where are they now?

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Open letter to Jani Allen: Oscar Pistorius

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John Varty interview with Sizie Modise

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Newsletter 89
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Newsletter 88
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Newsletter 87
16/01/14
Capture the Moment

Newsletter 86
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Newsletter 85
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The Communicators

Newsletter 84
26/11/13
A Letter to All Conservationists in SA 
Sparked by the whole Melissa Bachman Debacle
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Newsletter 83
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Newsletter 82
04/11/13
Profit is the Name of Your Game

Newsletter 81
30/10/13

Big Cat Cub Safari


Newsletter 80
18/10/13
In the Jaws of the Tiger

Newsletter 79
11/10/13
Open letter to Vice President Cyril Ramaphosa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 78
06/10/13
Open letter to Min of Defense, South Africa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 77
30/09/13
Digital Photography

Newsletter 76
06/09/13
Zoochosis

Newsletter 75
20/07/13
Rhino Horn Trade - Response

Newsletter 74
09/07/13
Raw Power

Newsletter 73
02/07/13
The Evolution of the Tracker

Newsletter 72
02/07/13
An Open Letter to the Honourable Edna Molewa, Minister of Water Affairs and Environmental Affairs

Newsletter 71
06/06/13
Using flash or spotlight on cats at night

Newsletter 70
14/05/13
Mirror mirror on the wall, who has the best eyesight of them all?

Newsletter 69
12/04/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fastest of them all?

Newsletter 68
25/03/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the best fighter of them all?

Newsletters 67
07/03/13
Wild Cheetah return to the Free State after 100 years

Newsletter 66
28/02/13
Seeking the genes

Newsletters 65
06/02/13
Corbett's Journey

Newsletters 64
22/01/13
In Search of a Mate

Newsletters 63
11/01/13
Rumble in the Jungle

Newsletters 62
30/10/12
Voronin Big Cat Safari Breaks All Records

Newsletters 61
09/12/12
A Journey to Nowhere

Newsletter 60
03/10/12
The John Hume Approach

Newsletter 59
28/09/12
Response to Rhino Horn Auction

Newsletters 58
24/09/12
A Letter to John Hume, SA biggest Rhino Breeder

Newsletters 57
05/09/12
Newsletters 56
01/08/12
Indian Government -
the wrong decision

Newsletter 55
11/07/12
What price must beauty pay?

Newsletter 54
21/04/12
Corbett's Freedom

Newsletter 53
15/04/12
Lethal injection or Freedom

Newsletters 52
04/04/12
The anatomy of an aggressive tiger

Newsletters 51
14/02/12
Majestic, breathtaking pictures

Newsletters 50
04/11/11
Tigress Calendar

Newsletters 49
19/11/11

Let your pictures do the talking

Newsletters 48
26/09/11

Rhino Wars

Newsletters 47
06/09/11
A Letter to the President

Newsletters 46
08/08/11
The Body Parts Scam

Newsletters 45
11/07/11
Tiger Subspecies

Newsletters 43
01/05/11
Your future and the Tiger

Newsletter 42
08/05/11
Talk to Me

Newsletter 41
26/01/11
Gaian Reminder

Newsletter 40
18/11/10
Ron's Journey

Newsletter 39
20/10/10
"Descreprimate"

Newsletter 38
06/09/10
Beauty comes at a price

Newsletter 37
18/08/10

The Light Has Gone Out


Newsletter 36
08/07/10
The Beautiful Game

Newsletter 35
05/07/10
The Ethics of
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Newsletter 34
21/06/10
Tiger Hunt

Newsletter 33
26/05/10
The Year of the Tiger

Newsletter 32
11/02/10

Riding the Tiger


Newsletter 31
24/01/10

Runti's Journey


Newsletter 30
12/01/10

To intervene or not to intervene -
that is the question...

Newsletter 29
07/12/09

Lion - Tiger - Human Communication


Newsletter 28
12/11/09

Emotional humans, emotional cats


Newsletter 27
03/11/09

Julie gives birth to 5 tiger cubs


Newsletter 26
24/09/09

International Tiger Day


Newsletter 25
17/08/09

To all Photographers


Newsletter 24
16/07/09

A Shot in Anger


Newsletter 22
24/04/09


Newsletter 21
24/03/09


Newsletter 19
14/01/09

Tiger Birth
at Tiger Canyons


Newsletter 16
10/10/08

Tiger Courting


Newsletter 11
29/01/08

Privatizing the Tiger


Newsletter 9
27/10/07

Newsletter 8
28/09/07

Newsletter 7
14/09/07

Water Cats


Newsletter 6
14/08/07

Tiger Intelligence


Newsletter 5
16/05/07

Tiger language
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Newsletter 3
09/03/07

Interspecies communication


Newsletter 2
06/02/07

Cub relocation


Londolozi
Newsletters

Death of a Legend
17/08/09


Newsletter 20
10/02/09

Newsletter 15
17/08/08

Painted Wolves


Newsletter 13
11/04/08

Response to Elephant Trust
by Daryl Balfour


Newsletter 12
09/04/08

Elephant Trust