Aye Aye and I by Gerald Durrell

When I picked up this Gerald Durrell book, I realise it was yet another book about his expeditions into the wild to collect mostly the animals who were on the brink of extinction. I have written many book reviews about his expeditions so I was sure I would skip this one – afterall even though I enjoyed his writings and I would (in my thoughts) invariably pack my bags and tug along with him to breathe in the tropical humid air, witness the most pristine surroundings, meet the rare and endangered species around the world and learn techniques to catch them and breed them in captivity but nonetheless it was getting repetitive!!

But after I read this book I could not stop myself from writing about one main aspect touched upon by Gerald Durrell. In this book, the author time and again writes about his heart wrenching feelings when he witnesses the deforested areas of Madagascar. He was on a trip to catch the elusive Aye Aye there.

On the the way to his destination, everywhere he notices patches of deforested areas. Needless to say he was disappointed to see the forest cover shrink to accommodate paddy fields and agricultural land. He was of the opinion that if such destruction of forests continues, we would loose many species of flora and fauna and it would be detrimental for the whole world.

This book was written way back in 1990. And in these 30 years, the human race has not stopped itself from self destruction. We continue to cut forests and the governments continue to look away from the problem at hand. They do not intend to find a long term solution to the problem or frame stringent rules. No wonder we have lost so many invaluable plants and other creatures. We are experiencing global warming too!

I hope that we put a full-stop to our self destructive habits and minimize our carbon footprint.


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