TYPES DE FOURRURE SAUVAGE

La fourrure sauvage représente environ 15 à 20 % des ventes de fourrure dans le monde.

De nombreuses espèces sauvages abondantes à fourrure sont utilisées dans la profession, mais celles les plus utilisées sont (par ordre alphabétique):

Belette d’Europe (Mustela nivalis) ; Castor nord-américain (Castor canadensis); Coyote (Canis latrans); Ecureuil russe et chinois (Sciurus vulgaris); Hermine (Mustela erminea); Kolinski (Mustela sibirica); Marte (Martes americana); Opossum de Nouvelle-Zélande (Trichosurus vulpecula); Rat musqué (Ondatra zibethica); Ragondin (Myocastor coypus)(principalement d’Amérique du Sud et du Nord); Raton-laveur (Procyon lotor); Renard gris (Urocyon cinereoargenteus et Pseudalopex griseus) et renard rouge (Vulpes vulpes); Vison (Mustela vison) ; et Zibeline russe (Martes zibellina);.

PROGRAMMES DE GESTION DES ANIMAUX SAUVAGES

La majorité des espèces sauvages utilisée par la profession de la fourrure ne sont pas tuées spécifiquement pour leur fourrure mais dans le cadre de programmes de gestion des animaux sauvages, régulé par les gouvernements conseillés et supervisés par des biologistes animaliers.

Les animaux à fourrure se reproduisent indéfiniment si leur habitat est viable, ce qui permet de tuer le surplus année après année sans menacer la survie de l’espèce.

Une surpopulation de toute espèce crée un déséquilibre écologique aux effets massifs. Les populations d’animaux sauvages produisent de manière typique plus de petits que l’habitat peut en recevoir sur une base annuelle. Sans une gestion réfléchie, des problèmes peuvent survenir, tels ceux-ci-dessous :

Impact on animals: an increase in numbers puts a strain on the available food resource and can lead to stress and starvation.

Flooding: muskrats undermine dikes, as is the case in Belgium and Holland where trappers are paid by government to control numbers.

Land management: in the USA, studies by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation have estimated that beaver dams cause in excess of $6 million in damages annually by flooding land, blocking drainage channels and by washing away roads, railways and bridges when dams fail. The USA as a whole costs beaver damage at $1.5 billion annually.

Disease and pest control: management prevents the build-up of diseases that can be transmitted to domestic animals and humans. Lyme disease, Giardia, round worms, mange, distemper and rabies are some examples of diseases carried by fur-bearers.

Provided they are carefully managed, fur-bearers can also bring benefits to other wildlife populations. For example, North American beaver dams can create an ideal habitat for many other species, rare and common. Regulation of the wolf population in Russia and Canada reduces damage caused to reindeer herders and helps to restore population of rare or endangered species. The IFF is a voting member of the INTERNATIONAL UNION FOR THE CONSERVATION OF NATURE (IUCN), which supports the fur industry’s “sustainable use of abundant species”.

SUPPORTING RURAL LIFESTYLES

Wild fur-bearing animals are a natural resource that has long provided food and clothing for man. Today, they are particularly important to those living in isolated and rural areas, enabling these communities to maintain a traditional lifestyle while earning cash income.

These people are everyday conservationists, acting as the eyes and ears of the wildlife habitat. They are often the first to identify and communicate any risk they see to the environment around them, such as disease, pollution or poorly planned development projects.

Some wild fur animals such as beaver and muskrat – also provide food for aboriginal and remote communities. Animals not used for food are returned to nature to feed other wildlife, so that nothing is wasted.

SUPPORT FOR THE WILD FUR TRADE

“The key to abundant wildlife in coastal Louisiana is habitat. If we protect and enhance these marshlands through management, including fur animal harvest, we can ensure these renewable resources for untold generations”.

-Greg Linscombe, biologist at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

“Habitat conservation is the key to maintaining the viability of all wildlife populations and the ecosystems on which they depend. Unlike habitat destruction, regulated trapping is a sustainable use of wildlife resources, and does not, in any way, threaten the continued existence of any wildlife population”.
-Government Northeast Furbearer Resources Technical Committee

“Aboriginal people are a part of nature in a way that very few people have ever known. We have used the animals and fish, plants and water of the earth for generations. We are nurtured by this environment. Through our livelihood, we pass on our traditional skills and values to our children.

But there are human beings who have never seen this country, who wish to destroy our lives. These people have become so far removed from a natural environment that they desperately believe they should save our homeland from whatever threatens it. They do not see that they are the biggest threat.

Protecting and maintaining healthy populations of fur-bearing animals is more than a matter of social conscience for our people, it is a matter of our survival.”
-The Council for Yukon Indians.

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