Central Texas (KXAN) — Tucked away in Texas Hill Country, the Alveus Sanctuary is a non-profit organization where emus, cows, foxes and chinchillas have entertained crowds for over two years.
Founder Maya Higa works to educate the public about the need for animal protection, using social media to expand her audience and help people understand the humanity of exotic animals. I’m here.
In addition to its role as an animal sanctuary, Alveus also serves as a virtual education center. Stream Animals on Twitch To educate the public more about these alien species and the environmental dangers they face.
Having grown up on a small farm in California before studying agriculture at university, Higa’s background is rooted in working with wildlife. In April 2019, she began streaming a rehabilitated red-tailed hawk on her Twitch. That was the spark that drew the audience and inspired Alveus Sanctuary, she said.
“I learned the model of people falling in love with individual animals and caring about their species and planet,” she said.
By using Twitch, she said, she was able to tap into demographics of people who might otherwise not have been exposed to conservation. That led to global outreach, with thousands of people tuned in at any given time to observe the animals in their sanctuary habitats or learn more from her one of Higa’s educational lessons. rice field.
Animals that live in Alveus include emus, parrots, cows, chinchillas, reptiles, foxes, crows and marmosets. Many animals are called “ambassadors” for various reasons. For example, emus represent the exotic meat trade, and parrots carry out the illegal pet trade.
How the Animals Ended Up in the Arbeus Sanctuary
Each animal comes from a different environment that led them to Arbeus. Some were rescued or neglected, while others were unable to be released due to various problems.
Some were injured, while others were recovered from overstocked zoos. While recognizing that conservation work is an issue that affects everyone, Higa hopes that people will be able to pay more attention to the various threats posed to these animals. Said there was
“Conservation is a global battle,” she said. “The more people who fight, the better the planet will be. And the more people who care about their species, the more people will worry about the decisions they make.”
While Higa recognizes the various issues involved in creating digital content and working with social media, she is inspired to see many young people learning about these issues at an early age. said.
Not everyone knows that 33% of amphibians are endangered or that it takes 125 chinchillas to make one fur coat. But knowledge is power, and education puts young people in a position to make a difference, she said.
“If they knew, they would care, because they love these animals,” she said. is.”
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