All these "sales" lately / Personal feelings

Anne Kilmer viceroy at
Thu May 7 13:26:54 EDT 1998

Pierre le Roux wrote:
> Sorry, I seem to have helped this vein digress from the original
> intent as well:
> To put matter straight: I (personally) believe, that all insects for
> sale should be legally obtained - preferably bred.

I agree. I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending that insects be 
used as jewelry, objects of decoration, pets, food and whatever, just as 
we do farm animals. And raised for that purpose, either native 
free-range (best) or well enclosed non-natives, sold only dead and 
	At the same time, I am eager that habitat be preserved, and that 
we work out ways farmers can garden organically, harvesting insects as 
well as crops. 
	I enjoy walking through Mounts Botanical Garden, which used to 
be sprayed with all sorts of nasty stuff, and now is absolutely 
non-violent. Cannas are charmingly chewed at the moment; buddleija has  
a new kind of scale, the curator told me, and added, each scale has a 
little hole where a parasite came out.
Every part of the garden blooms with an assortment of insects glittering 
in the sun, and the Master Gardeners look at them and rejoice. Honest!
If we can change people this much in Palm Beach County, where people are 
 accustomed to a bug-free life, surely you can achieve it in Africa 
where people haven't decided that Nature is the enemy and must be 
> Secondly, I don't think I've made myself guilty of offering material
> through this newsgroup at all: There is a separate newsgroup, Leps
> Livestock List, available for just that.
> What I do feel is that Ernst (sorry, you asked for it), should not
> make his own set of rules applicable on the rest of the world:
> When I asked for comment on how to go about preserving a habitat
> under threat, last year, I got a lot of lame excuses for not getting
> involved: Only one person was brave enough to put forward some useful
> suggestions:

Oh, I thought there were a couple of us. I like the idea of wildlife 
safaris, trout farms etc. as long as a good amount of the profits go to 
protecting the habitat and the folks back home. People do need to be 
amazingly careful about not spreadin contagion. 
There are too many of us now, though, and perhaps the netting, 
photographing and releasing will win out over the killing. Not enough 
bugs to go around, when everybody wants them. Unless we all work 
together to restore the habitat ... in which case there will be plenty 
for all of us, won't there. 
 That was at the same time as people were lamenting on
> this newsgroup about "unfair" systems implemented whilst no-one was
> looking in the U.S.A - I hope the same does not happen here.
> But on the other hand - if the Western World - that likes telling Africa
> how to handle its affairs- can promise us enough aid/"compensation",
> after "exploiting" the continent for so long, we promise not to do
> the same to our own natural resources (or what's left after the
> empires had taken there dues), as Europe & North America :-)
> Ernst said:
> > > The only legitimate trade in insects I can think off is in hiring out/
> > > selling colonies of (bumble)bees and the like for pollinating crops and the
> > > multitude of insects, especially parasitoids and predators (and other
> > > organisms such as nematodes, etc.) for biological control.
> Pierre said:
> > Here in Africa, apart from safari's in gameparks, people pay to come
> > hunting game on farms set aside for just that. I, for one, cant see
> > why people that want to hunt insects should not be allowed to pay for
> > the pleasure on the same basis ;-)
> Let me clarify this further: I have about 70 hectares (154 acres)
> taken over by alien vegetation, introduced by well-meaning settlers -
> I suppose my grandparents who bought the farm back in the '40 did
> their bit. This I intend recovering for natural plants, in order to
> assist local butterflies that are (by no means) not under threat, to
> establish in greater numbers. I feel it is only fair to defray the
> cost of such a venture, by renting out rooms to lepidopterists,
> cooped up in cities, at prices not more expensive than your local
> guest houses, in order for them to catch, legally and with permision,
> butterflies - ranched but not farmed. I fail to see the end of the
> analogy: If I take trouble to assist or breed something, over and
> above the numbers nature will supply, why should I not sell it?
> I think that's fair enough, but I also think that collecting interests 
children, and adults, in nature and will help us preserve it. Traffic in 
legal dead stuff is fine with me. Traffic in live bugs as pets etc. 
worries me. We've had so many escapes and deliberate releases ... 
> Again, sorry if I trod on some tender toes, but then I'm a farmer who
> lacks the finesse that comes from bein raised in the confines of
> European main-stream capitalist society.
> Pierre le Roux Tel&Fax:+(27)-15-583-0084
> P.O. Box 8     ( Cellphone+27-82-9234-975)
> 0929 Levubu
> South Africa
> 23°05'S 30°15'E, 680m above mean sealevel.

We're all expatriots, Pierre, exiles from a fair country and longing to 
recreate Earth in that image.   I think we're making headway, too. But 
it's nearly full moon. 
Anne Kilmer
South Florida

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