he town of El Valle de Antón, in central Panama, sits in the middle of a volcanic crater formed about a million years ago. The crater is almost four miles across, but when the weather is clear you can see the jagged hills that surround the town, like the walls of a ruined tower. El Valle has one main street, a police station, and an open-air market that offers, in addition to the usual hats and embroidery, what must be the world’s largest selection of golden-frog figurines. There are golden frogs sitting on leaves and—more difficult to understand—golden frogs holding cell phones. There are golden frogs wearing frilly skirts, and golden frogs striking dance poses, and ashtrays featuring golden frogs smoking cigarettes through a holder, after the fashion of F.D.R. The golden frog, which is bright yellow with dark-brown splotches, is endemic to the area around El Valle. It is considered a lucky symbol in Panama—its image is often printed on lottery tickets—though it could just as easily serve as an emblem of disaster.
Tag Archives: Climate Crisis and the Sixth Extinction
Ron Nixon (NYT) reports on the Ivory Trade decimating elephants and rhinos.
“Trafficking in wildlife has decimated elephant and rhino populations in Africa. The latest figures from South Africa show that 1,215 rhinos were killed last year, up from a little more than 300 in 2010. More than 100,000 elephants were killed for ivory since 2010, according to a 2014 Colorado State University report. Rhino horns can fetch prices as high as $30,000 a pound, and ivory can command prices as high as $3,000 a pound.”
The plan includes using intelligence agencies and putting pressure on Asian countries to stop the buying and selling of rhinoceros horns and elephant ivory.
nytimes.com|By RON NIXON