Conservation vs Preservation – Bringing Clarity to the Confusion

In the context of the natural world ‘Conservation’ and ‘Preservation’ are the two essential arms of ‘wildlife management’.

They are not synonyms because they each have a distinct and vital purpose. It is incorrect to believe that ‘conservation’ is just another word for ‘wildlife management’ because that is not the case at all. ‘Conservation’ is, in fact, subjugate to management because it represents only one arm (or function) of the management activity.

Wild animals occur in different populations. Some populations are SAFE (numerous and breeding well) others are UNSAFE (small in number and shrinking). UNSAFE populations are on the road to local extinction.

SAFE populations can and should be harvested sustainably, in one or many different ways, every year. They can be culled and/or hunted without adversely affecting the SAFETY of the population – provided the ‘take off’ is sustainable; provided the take off does not exceed the population’s incremental rate; and provided the take off is repeatable year after year.

The wildlife management strategy that is applied to SAFE animal populations is called ‘conservation management’ and it implies sustainable ‘use’ or sustainable ‘consumptive management’ of one kind or another.

If UNSAFE populations are to be saved from extinction, they require the application of a man-conceived management strategy that ‘protects them from all harm’. It is called ‘preservation management’. The purpose of applying a preservation management strategy to an UNSAFE animal population is to make it, once again, SAFE. UNSAFE populations should not be used in any way by man.

The concepts of ‘Conservation’ and ‘Preservation’, therefore, are essential brother-sister wildlife management tools that cannot and must not be separated; yet the strategies have to be applied separately.

Wildlife management needs both strategies if it is to be complete.

We should, therefore, not call animal rightists (the anti-hunters) ‘conservationists’ OR ‘preservationists’ because BOTH those concepts are integral and vital parts of the holistic wildlife management philosophy.

Call them what they really are: abolitionists; hypocrits; fraudsters; eco-racketeers; and members of international organised crime. Why should we reduce their stature by calling them anything else!

See diagram.



Ron Thomson

RON THOMSON His passion, today, is concerned with creating a better informed society – better informed, that is, about “best practice” wildlife management and the wise and sustainable utilization of our wild living resources for the benefit of mankind. He has a strong and passionate commitment to exposing the menace and iniquities of the animal rights doctrine. He is a founding member of the True Green Alliance (TGA) and, for the duration of 2016, he was its President. In January 2017 he was appointed CEO. The TGA is affiliated to South Africa’s wildlife Industry insofar as it has undertaken to fight the industry’s battles to overcome pernicious opposition from the South African and international animal rights movement.

Ron Thomson has 150 posts and counting. See all posts by Ron Thomson

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