How to Respect Wildlife

Today we’re talking about R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

Specifically, respecting Wildlife, can they get a little respect please? 

Humans have become so complacent in the world that it’s a forgotten art to respect wildlife. The animals of the forest and the trees growing up from the ground are living creatures. While they are not in a position to respect us, it means that the whole “respect” thing falls on the shoulders of humans.

Most of the time on the news, you hear about hurt animals or someone hurting a wild animal. You hear about poachers, animal killers, and people who abuse animals. Wildlife is a gift to all of us and it’s important to take care of wild animals. Maybe you don’t know how to start respecting wildlife or you’re confused on while wildlife even needs respected.


#1. Don’t bother wildlife

This may seem like a natural thing to understand, but humans just-don’t-get-it. Respecting wildlife is super important to the earth. While it’s okay to be curious, it is not okay to get in the way of wildlife. For example, you see a bear minding its own business, don’t get in its way. Let it keep doing its bear thing and you keep doing your human thing. Don’t try to touch the wildlife, don’t try to feed the wildlife, just don’t bother the wildlife at all. You may want to get that selfie to brag on FB, but trust us, just leave them alone. 

#2. Don’t attempt to feed wildlife

Most people know this, but as a firm and friendly reminder, don’t feed wildlife. Don’t leave food behind for wildlife to get into either. You will see that there are always signs saying “don’t feed wildlife” posted in national parks. It’s there for a reason. Once humans start feeding wildlife, the animals start to become dependent on it. Once the food source is gone, the wild animals will start to search for “food” in human habitats. If you do plan on going camping and taking food out into the wild, make sure you store your food appropriately. Food that humans eat is not the same as what animals eat, it can be detrimental to their health.

respect wildlife

#3. Don’t pick up wildlife

Every now and then you’ll see a cute picture of someone holding a baby bird or even another type of baby animal. Although it may look cute it’s not. No one should touch an animal without being experienced. If your child wants to pick up an injured or hurt animals, it’s important to explain to the importance of waiting for an expert. While your heart may be hurting, it is vital that the animal get the right care, which most likely you cannot provide. Not to mention-wildlife could have a disease or sickness that is detrimental to humans. Touching or picking up a wild animal could make you sick. And the same thing goes for them, you could carry germs to them, which could also result in them getting sick.

respect wildlife #4. Leave things the way you found them

This seems to be a hard concept for humans to understand as well. So much of the earth has been destroyed by humans already, it only makes sense to leave things the way you found them. Obviously if you see something that is a mess, clean it up. However, leave things as naturally as you can. Don’t leave trash, food, or anything else for wildlife to get into. When humans pollute nature, it impacts animals more than anyone could ever imagine.

respect wildlife #5. Wildlife depends on us

As much as we don’t think wildlife depends on us, they do! They don’t depend on us for food and to take care of them, but for us to leave them alone. Since humans have destroyed so much of the earth already, it’s important to leave animals alone as much as we can. While it’s so cool to see animals, it’s best to do it from afar and leave them alone as much as possible. If you see others approaching wildlife it is your duty to tell them not to. Those of us that are educated about wildlife must standup for the animals, even if it means confronting others. 


#6. Talk to your children

As much as you think children would know to respect wildlife, it’s not always that easy to comprehend. Children depend on their parents to help them understand everything about wildlife. From how to treat, understand, and care for animals is an important part of raising a good kid.

teaching kids to respect wildlife #7. Teach your children how to observe animals in the wild.

Kids are kids and that means that sometimes they get excited. There is a lot of excitement in finding any type of animal in the wild. It’s important to teach your child how to observe animals appropriately in the wild. Going to the zoo is one way your children can learn to respect animals. Watching animals and how they react in their environment is one way to teach a child about natural wildlife. Sometimes it’s hard for children to comprehend that a wild animal is nothing like their pet cat or dog. Teaching them the difference could actually save their life.

respect wildlife

#8. Find fun ways to teach your child about respecting wildlife.

It is eventually easy for children to understand all about respecting humans, but when it comes to respecting wildlife, it can be harder. One solution is to find fun ways to teach your child about wild life. Going to the zoo is one way. Taking hikes is another way, see what kind of wildlife can be discovered and help your children understand how to respect the wild animals. Another way would be to pick up a few books about wildlife. Help your children learn what wild animals do and why they do it. These activities will help your child learn all about respecting wildlife. Education is always the key in teaching anything, especially something as complex as respecting wildlife.

Children and adults alike need to understand the importance of respecting wildlife. I touched on the ‘teaching children’ aspect so much because children depend on adults to show them the ropes. If you’re polluting, touching wildlife, and not following nature-protocol, your children are sure to follow. By following these steps in respecting wildlife, everyone can stay safe. When humans get too involved with wild animals, it’s usually the wild animals that end up killed or hurt. Let’s do our part in respecting and taking care of what’s in the wild.


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2 thoughts on “How to Respect Wildlife

  1. Everyone who goes into nature needs to read this!!! There have been too many sad stories out of Yellowstone and Banff lately, but a little education goes a long way (seriously though, you think some things would be common sense!).

  2. Great read. I’ve read too many articles lately about people not respecting wildlife and the point about talking to our kids is a biggie. It all starts with us as parents and if we actively discuss these issues with them I truly believe it makes a difference. Whenever we are outdoors we keep Leave No Trace Principles in mind.

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