Tuesday, September 7, 2010

What would you say?

As a wildlife carer sometimes it is neccessary to take one or two little critters with you when you go out. Last night I had April the Possum with me and a lady commented on how gorgeous she was. Yes, I agreed with her. She is gorgeous and special.

Then she went on to tell me all about a possum coat she had purchased in New Zealand. It was so warm and soft and cuddly and I would really love it if I had one!

I think she was a little scared of the look on my face - because she then went on to tell me that Possums in New Zealand are pests - which is quite true. The Australian brush tailed possum was introduced into New Zealand in 1837 to establish a fur trade. They have no natural predators there and as such have become a pest.

I agreed with her about them being a pest and then also said that I just wouldn't and couldn't wear a coat that was made of possum fur. I wasn't nasty or righteous.

She didn't seem to understand why and we were left with one of those really uncomfortable moments where nobody knows what to say next.

What would you have said to this lady?

Cheers from here?


BUSH BABE said...

It's hard isn't it? When an animal is considered 'protected' in one country, but a 'pest' and 'fair game' in another. I had quite an interesting twitter debate with a friend the other day about what meats are okay to eat, and which ones weren't. It boils down to what you get emotionally attached to. We breed cattle and I am happy to eat beef - despite the fact that I love my cows very much. It's practical and accepted. On the other hand, I could NEVER eat horse meat. I think about horses in a different way. But other cultures do not, and I respect that. (I would also check the source of my meat dish carefully in these places!).

I don't think there is a right or wrong in this case - just what each of you accepts. Vive la difference!

Nutty Gnome said...

I couldn't bring myself to wear a fur coat of any sort, regardless of whether it was a pest or not.It just doesn't feel right to me when there are so many alternatives.

At home I only buy meat from the local organic butcher, but when I'm travelling, however, I eat whatever I'm given - and yes Bush Babe, I have eaten horse meat....and snake, dog, goat, and many more things that I have chickened out of asking what it was! Fur coats are a choice, food is a necessity :)

Jindivick Wildlife Care said...

I'm with you on the coats Nutty - it just doesn't feel right. As for the meat - we tried to eat Kangaroo as part of a new healthy diet a while ago - I couldn't get around the taste of it or perhaps my taste buds were colored by the fact that we were eating our national animal!
Any - each to their own - with less foot in mouth disease!!!