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Dr. Alan Rabinowitz passes away #531689
08/06/18 05:23 AM
08/06/18 05:23 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 72,952
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

Statement on the Life and Legacy of Panthera Founder and Renowned Conservationist, Dr. Alan Rabinowitz

Dr. Rabinowitz, ‘The Indiana Jones of Wildlife Protection,’ Gave a Voice to the World’s Wild Cats

The Board and staff of Panthera, the global wild cat conservation organization, mourn the loss of our co-founder and one of the world’s most visionary and widely admired wild cat scientists, Dr. Alan Robert Rabinowitz, who died today after a journey with cancer.

Panthera CEO and President, Dr. Fred Launay, stated, “The conservation community has lost a legend. Alan was a fearless and outspoken champion for the conservation of our planet’s iconic wild cats and wild places. As a lifelong voice for the voiceless, he changed the fate of tigers, jaguars and other at-risk species by placing their protection on the agendas of world leaders from Asia to Latin America for the very first time.”

Launay continued, “Inspiring a generation of young scientists, the boldness and passion with which Alan approached conservation was captivating and contagious. While we are devastated by his passing, we are comforted by the fact that his extraordinary legacy of advocacy for the most vulnerable creatures will live on in his legion of students and followers.”

“Our thoughts are with Alan’s wife Salisa and their children, Alexander and Alana, for whom Alan was a real-life superhero.”

In a career spanning more than three decades, Dr. Rabinowitz was, above all, a protector and global advocate for wild cats and other threatened wildlife, the diminishing lands in which they roam, and the often impoverished people living near these cats and other wildlife.

Among a lengthy seminal list, some of his crowning conservation achievements are the conceptualization and implementation of Panthera’s Jaguar Corridor Initiative, an unprecedented effort to connect and protect jaguars from Mexico to Argentina, and the establishment of the world's first jaguar sanctuary in Belize. Forever in awe of the magnificence of the tiger – the world’s largest cat – Dr. Rabinowitz achieved victory after victory for the species, including the creation of the largest tiger reserve, the Hukaung Valley Tiger Reserve, in northern Myanmar.

Read more about the career of Alan Rabinowitz.

Washington Post

Alan Rabinowitz, champion of leopards, jaguars and other wild cats, dies at 64
Alan Rabinowitz, a zoologist who overcame a debilitating stutter to become a powerful voice for leopards, jaguars and other wild cats threatened by humans, died Aug. 5 at a hospital in Manhattan. He was 64. The cause was cancer, according to a statement from Panthera, a wild-cat conservation organization that he co-founded in 2006 and, until recently, led as chief executive. Dr. Rabinowitz had been diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia in 2001. As a child with a severe stutter, Dr. Rabinowitz spent much of his free time playing on the floor of his bedroom closet, where he secluded himself with “a little menagerie” of pet chameleons, snakes, turtles and hamsters — “the only living beings around me that seemed to listen but not judge.”

Re: Dr. Alan Rabinowitz passes away [Re: Marty] #531699
08/06/18 12:57 PM
08/06/18 12:57 PM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,461
Belize City
Katie Valk Offline

Katie Valk  Offline
Alan is credited with starting the Cockscomb/Jaguar Preserve, where he studied cats for many yrs. I fact, I think Alan was in the plane when it crashed and the wreck is still there. Huge loss for all

Belize based travel specialist
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Re: Dr. Alan Rabinowitz passes away [Re: Marty] #531746
08/09/18 05:14 AM
08/09/18 05:14 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 72,952
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

Rabinowitz Passes; Legacy Lives On

At the start of the news we told you about the murder of Richard Foster, the British Film-maker who’d called Belize home for 45 years, and made this country famous in his nature documentaries, going all the way back to the 80’s.  At that time, surely his path would have crossed with Alan Rabinowtiz, who set up the first jaguar reserve in the world back in the early 80’s.

Rabinowtiz died on Sunday at 64 in a hospital in Manhattan.  But, 8 years ago, we interviewed him and asked him to go over the history of how that reserve was set up.  It’s a fascinating story as told to Jules Vasquez:… - (July 3, 2008)

He first came to Belize in 1978 – at that time no one had studied jaguars in the rainforest.

Dr. Alan Rabinowitz
“What I saw shocked me. There were jaguars everywhere, there were jaguars right outside of Belize City, there were jaguars coming into the edges of Belize City. When I first came into Belize, I ended up going to meet the Chief Forest Officer, Henry Flowers at the time, and I said to him I would like permission to study jaguars, capture jaguars. He said what do you want to do that for, you don’t need permission, people are shooting jaguars, there are lots of jaguars – if you want to go capture jaguars, go do it.”

And that’s just what he did in the Cockscomb Basin finding a healthy jaguar population, but one under sustained threat from hunters. So he had the at that time outlandish idea to set up a jaguar reserve.

Dr. Alan Rabinowitz
“Cause at the time Belize had no protected areas system. Guanacaste Park was the only terrestrial protected area, that little park outside of Belmopan. There were no other protected areas in the entire country because why would you need protected areas if there is so much jungle and so much wildlife. I got an audience with not only the Prime Minister but his entire Cabinet and I think I was kind of a sideshow for the Cabinet. They wanted me to kind of make a growling sound like a jaguar in front of all the Ministers and to talk about my adventures chasing jaguars because they didn’t know why anybody would want to chase jaguars back in the jungle."

"The Ministers said why do we need a protected area, you have jaguars all over Belize, why do we have to set aside one area and protect it for jaguars. And I said because I in the future, Belize is going to have to develop, all this forest won’t be here in the future, I don’t what will or won’t be, but we’re going to need protected areas for the jaguars and I think tourists will come to the jungles and want to see jaguars. So the Cabinet voted, it ended up being a split vote and Prime Minister Price actually broke the vote and he said to let’s try it.”

The rest is history the Cockscomb became the world’s first jaguar reserve.

Dr. Alan Rabinowitz
“So it was actually first set up as a forest reserve with a no hunting policy for jaguars. That way they would protect the jaguars but would leave the flexibility if they wanted to use the area, if it didn’t work out. And then it eventually morphed into a wildlife sanctuary and then a national park."

"People actually started coming and then the whole protected area system just boomed in Belize, partly as a result of Cockscomb but it was also because the whole industry was taking off at that time and it was just a phenomenal success story which I never really planned but if you do things the right way I think and for the right reasons then I think it ends up being very much bigger than you could ever imagine.

"I don’t think I did much, I just planted one very small seed in the ground. Now 1,000 things could have stomped on that seed and just wiped it out but the people of Belize and all those people that followed ended up nurturing that seed and growing something very small into something very huge.”

Rabinowitz died of lymphatic cancer, which had spread to his lungs.  The New York Times obituary notes, “Dr. Rabinowitz, who had the reputation of a swashbuckler, traveled to jungles, rain forests and mountaintops. He mapped habitats diminished by development; negotiated with governments, some of them dictatorships, to provide safe swaths of land to preserve the wild cats; and argued that their preservation meant saving whole ecosystems.”

Alan Rabinowtiz, dead at 64.

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