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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wildlife Wednesday: Shop Smart

Today, rather than showing some amazing or cute animal videos, I thought I'd jump on the holiday season bandwagon. I figure if retailers and advertisers can start gearing you up for the biggest shopping season of the year, I can, too.
Earlier this week, I got my World Wildlife Fund gift catalog in the mail, and it reminded me that . . . 'tis the season. 'Tis the season when consumers buy billions of dollars worth of gift cards that go unused. 'Tis the season when shoppers buy hundreds of billions worth of gifts that will be returned, re-gifted, or just stowed away in the back of a closet. Fa la la la la. La la. La. . . La.
Now, let me ask you this: is there an animal lover on your list? Or someone who says, "Don't buy me anything," but you know you'll feel like a heel if you don't? Or someone who's just really, really hard to buy anything for at all?
The WWF catalog (and their website) is filled with lots of great ideas for gifts that allow you to do two things at once: check a name off of your shopping list and do some good for wildlife.
For example, you can "adopt" a tiger in someone's name for $25. They get a species description card, an adoption certificate, and a photo of the animal. A $50 adoption includes a cute little plush tiger. The $100 or Family Adoption includes a larger plush tiger and its cub.
Now, if plush toys aren't really up your gift recipient's alley, then, may I suggest getting the $25 adoption and buying some inexpensive trinket - a pin, a paperweight, a coffee cup - that carries the tiger theme.
There are over a hundred different species adoptions available: owls, wolves, cats of all shape and size, elephants, rhinos, penguins, whales, etc.
Animal lovers and the socially conscious on your list will appreciate the thought. And if they don't, odds are they weren't going to appreciate that scarf-and-hat set, assortment of hot cocoas, or all-in-one screwdriver, either. This way, though, your hard-earned dollars are still going to do some good.
There are plenty of other gifts available from WWF that are great for the animal aficionadi in your world to show their conservationist pride: hats, umbrellas, hoodies, calendars, stationery, beach towels, and more - the purchases of which all go toward the greater mission of the World Wildlife Fund.
Over the next couple of months, you can expect to see similar blogs from me regarding better ways to spend your holiday dollars: on saving the world instead of on things that are just going to collect dust somewhere.
Now, isn't that better than some dumb old baby animal video?
Just kidding. Here you go:
Mismatched twin jaguar cubs at Loro Parque in Spain. (More at ZooBorns.)

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