Following The Torture And Killing Of A Fox In Suhmur...Efforts To Save An Injured One In Siddikin

Whoever thinks that media can't change the patterns of our lives, and our relationship with the living things and the ecosystems and resources of nature, is mistaken, and those who consider the Environmental Media unimportant and a luxury, are so far from the truth; for the facts and our experiences as a scientific and environmentally specialized site proves the opposite. In fact, hardly a week passes without citizens contacting us in order to save an animal, or report a strange invasive fish, or turtles caught in nets of fishermen, or dead ones, and want to know the cause of death, as well as injured birds, and many other similar incidents, with all that "Green Area International Association"(NGO) became a reference and a refuge.

Never before has the attention of citizens in terrestrial and marine creatures reached this extent, so as to submit their observations, and even request help and expose the practices of aggressors and their violation of the laws, and this is another evidence that the media can be a platform so as to raise public awareness, and to accumulate general culture about environmental issues, and that's really what we started to witness recently.

Bzeih: I won't turn into a criminal

In this context, and on the morning of Saturday 18 th February 2017, after one week of our video in on the issue of a fox who was killed by two dogs -both the videotape and photos were documented- after being detained by citizens in western Bekaa, "Greenarea International Society " received a call from the environmental activist the engineer Wassim Bzeih , who asked us as an environmental NGO to intervene to release a fox which was kept in a chicken coop in the southern Siddikin town in Tyr district, this request came after an appeal from the owner of the house to release the fox away from his home and where he resides since the area is densely populated.

We immediately went to Siddikin in the Tyr district, to meet the homeowner Jaafar Bzeih (Abu Ala'a), who received us with joy, and told he never intended to kill the fox, and told us:"I was surprised to see the  Fox, and tried to remove it to flee away, but it sneaked into the garden of my neighbor which is opposite my house and entered the coop of chickens, so we closed it and took the initiative and contacted you".

Bzeih stressed that "the horror of the scene I saw in the video which you documented and displayed in your site where the dogs attacking and killing the Fox, came back in front of my very eyes, at that moment in which the escaped fox hid in the chickens' coop," he said, "I can no longer assault nature and its laws, and turn into a criminal , so I didn't kill it for he's only hungry, and will not kill any living thing, or any other fox attacking my chickens, and I'm going to protect them in other ways".

From Siddikin to Aley

We were led by Bzeih to the place where the fox is kept, the fox showed severe signs of fear, and began flopping and experiencing nervous bouts suggesting that its health is not good, so with the help of locals we put it in a cage to take it to another place away from the residential area to release it back into nature, but it turns out that it had traces of blood in his ear and in his leg. Therefore, we contacted immediately the lecturer in the Lebanese University – Department of sciences and the owner of The Animal Encounter in Aley Dr. Munir Abi Said, in order to receive the fox to be treated from his injuries, and (Green Area) transferred it immediately from Siddikin to the center in Aley , and it was received and examined by Abi Said, who confirmed the serious injury it endured, as well as the existence of  many wounds from "shotgun pellets" by a hunting rifle in several parts of his body.

Abi Said told "What you are doing is noteworthy , and meets the objectives of our center in the protection of wildlife," and he affirmed that "the fox is injured seriously, but we will do all we can in an attempt to save it".

Abi Said added: "The fox in Lebanon is not on the list of endangered animals, but that doesn't justify killing it, the fox represents an important part of an integrated ecosystem, even if it attacked the chickens, but it feeds on rats and mice and many rodents that threaten agricultural harvests, and we can avoid its attacking the chickens by setting up barriers or high walls of prevent it from sneaking inside".

However, the task of saving the fox did not succeed this time, because two days later and in coordination with Abi Said, we were informed that the Fox did not survive and the attempts to treat it from its wounds to save it were unsuccessful.

Despite the grief over this loss, we felt a sense of satisfaction, as we've done everything we could to save this poor creature.


Translated by: Suzanne Abou Said Daou