Prince William to focus on wildlife conservation and endangered species

12 September 2013

It was announced today that Prince William is to leave armed forces to focus on conservation and other charity work. The prince will be the president of United for Wildlife which, the palace said, will “bring together some of the world’s largest environmental organisations and harness the resources and expertise of global leaders in business, communications, technology and the creative industries to tackle a common, universal challenge”. The illegal wildlife trade will be the initial focus of the new alliance, which also involves the Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

The news comes as it was announced the duke had completed his tour as an search and rescue helicopter pilot based at RAF Valley in Anglesey. He is leaving the military after more than seven-and-a-half years of full-time service. The Duke of Cambridge said: “The threats to our natural heritage are extensive, but I believe that this collaboration of the best minds in conservation will provide the impetus for a renewed commitment and action to protect endangered species and habitats for future generations. “At the root of the illegal wildlife trade, for example, is the demand for products that require the deaths of tens of thousands of these animals every year, pushing them further towards extinction. “We must work together to prevent this catastrophe and allow our children the opportunity to experience wildlife in its many beautiful and varied forms.”

The seven conservation organisations involved in the United for Wildlife grouping are Conservation International, Fauna & Flora International, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, The Nature Conservancy, Wildlife Conservation Society, WWF-UK and the Zoological Society of London.

Prince William, who completed his last RAF shift on Tuesday, will continue to carry out royal engagements but is not expected to increase his number of public duties – with sources saying the second in line to throne is in a “transitional” year. I“The duke will work closely over the next 12 months with the Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. He will expand his work in the field of conservation, particularly in respect of endangered species,” added the statement.

It is hugely encouraging to conservation organisations when a high profile person becomes involved to help highlight the many important wildlife and flora issues that are affecting the natural world, where so many people are working hard to protect and educate about why we need our wildlife, and what the implications of preserving them are. We at saSafari work with a number of lodges who run conservation and breeding programmes, and we have recently adopted an endangered Black Rhino as part of our giving back initative.  Find out more about it on our Giving Back page

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