Collecting Permit Ideas

Doug stelenes at
Fri Jul 17 02:44:01 EDT 1998

Mark, Jim and others equate butterfly collecting trips to the Amazon with acting
out Indiana Jones style fantasies.  I wanted to point out my opinion that Indiana
Jones (or Indiana Jane) would never apply for permits or care what the collecting
laws are.  He would never entertain thoughts of what is legal, never use a GPS,
never be interested in Leps unless he had to eat the poisonous caterpillars Doug
Y previously described, never take the type of airlines, ferries and buses which
exist there today.

He would break the law, rape the country of its most prized national treasure
with a priceless "market value", run from the authorities, seduce the most
exciting and adventurous Brazilian women, shave the chief headhunter's head to
find a distorted map with the Lat/Long mixed up, and make friends with the
savviest street child from Sao Paolo to help him in his thievery.  He probably
wouldn't bother to learn Portuguese but would be fluent in the chief headhunter's
language which no Euro/Asian-Brasilian knows.  And he especially would have only
the traditional uses for deli dishes.

I am also a Romanticist when it comes to dreaming about the past 500 years of
exploration in the Americas.  While some of us get satisfaction out of talking
about this, I bet most would really get more enjoyment out of reading Jim's old
copy of Bates' interesting (and incidentally also quite exaggerated and
romanticized) journeys.

But for those diehards who really want to play Indy and not just talk Romance, no
whining please!!!  The fantasy is more obtainable than ever.  Brasil has kindly
removed the dangerous indigenous peoples, replacing them with Danny DeVito type
bureaucrats like everywhere else in the world, gives better jail facilities than
Indy could dream of, reduced all penalties for offenders, has more exciting and
adventurous women than ever, more street children than ever, still has enough
tropical forests to get lost in and do what one wants, you can still take your
shoes off in the rain forest and I saw a few Congas last time I was there, one of
which I molested so he happily obliged, picandome...ayyy conga condenada!  The
open markets are bigger than ever, machetes are cheaper there than ever
(especially when they get the ones made in Colombia).  Seems like the quest for
the highest adventure is easier to do than ever to me.  Throw in sleeping in
shantytown and going to a club on the other side of the tracks one night - and
you might even one up Indy himself for thrills and danger.

Independent of the above, Brasil is such a beautiful country.  If you still can't
resist, just move there!  With all that excitement, you won't regret it.  I
suppose as a resident, you'd figure out some way to keep the interest in Leps.
Doug Y seems to...  By the way the organized tour is a useless idea and I hope
the majority shares my individual opinion. The butterfly reserve has potential.
Do you think it could be half of the remaining rainforest?  Anyway, Peace and
Freedom to all.  Doug D.
Douglas David Dawn
N.  25º 37.408'
W. 100º 22.003'
Altitude 910 meters
Sylvania Pinus-Quercus

Doug Yanega wrote:

> Mark Walker wrote:
> >Yuck!  I guess I know now for sure that it's not just looking at the
> >butterflies that compels me.  It's the trek, the adventure.  Maybe I'm just
> >a spoiled little brat wanting to play Indiana Jones, but this doesn't work
> >for me.
> Believe me, I understand exactly. I am a field biologist at heart, though I
> can certainly be happy sitting over a scope for days on end - I've inhaled
> noxious museum fumes for over 15 years now - but sooner or later the urge
> for a field trip just boils in the blood. But I'm also not all that certain
> that the majority of amateur leppers would *really* enjoy an unguided trek
> in the Amazonian wilds. What I am saying is that this extreme level of
> freedom may be something that the few of us who DO crave "the adventure"
> will just have to live without, at least to the extent of stalking and
> killing. Maybe the safari idea of Anne's is the best we could hope for to
> have access without exploitation in the meanwhile. In another 50 years when
> all the rainforest is gone except for tiny preserves, we won't even have
> this much to look forward to, most likely.
> >What bothers me more is that since this would discourage me, it is perceived
> >by many to be a great solution (because I am perceived to be part of the
> >problem).  This is the notion I wish to neutralize, for it is simply not
> >true.
> I don't think it's an ideal solution (and unless you're going after
> *dozens* of duplicates of the rare and flashy species, you're not part of
> the problem), but it offers a fair shot at doing the most good for the most
> people, and ultimately it's how this will affect people that will determine
> what, if anything, is done. We're fooling ourselves if we think that anyone
> is going to make decisions in the best interests of the animals, at least
> not over the long haul (consider the status of the Endangered Species act
> if you don't get my drift). If the dollars and cents don't tally up right
> in the end, it'll never fly.
> Peace,
> Doug Yanega    Depto. de Biologia Geral, Instituto de Ciencias Biologicas,
> Univ. Fed. de Minas Gerais, Cx.P. 486, 30.161-970 Belo Horizonte, MG   BRAZIL
> phone: 031-449-2579, fax: 031-441-5481  (from U.S., prefix 011-55)
>   "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
>         is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82


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