Lemurs are way more awesome than geckos
Some cranky scientists are up in arms because Sir Richard Branson is planning to bring a few lemurs to Mosquito Island.
Their list of complaints is as long as a lemur’s tail (about two feet), and it has been published in major newspapers around the world.
If you ask me, the scientists seem to be missing the point, which is this: Lemurs are totally awesome.
They have cute, fuzzy faces. They have black-and-white-striped tails. They look like a cross between an Ewok and Yoda. They’re dying to get drunk on liquor drinks that tourists leave unattended.
And who knows? They can probably be trained to operate crank organs and dance the polka.
In my opinion, this awesomeness far outweighs any negative effects the lemurs might have on Mosquito’s delicate ecosystem.
But the cranky scientists beg to differ. They complain that lemurs could eat the critically endangered dwarf geckos that live on the island.
Pshaw, I say.
Sure, the lemurs might “take the odd gecko,” as Sir Richard told the Telegraph — but there are more than 1,000 of the tiny lizards on Mosquito, and the lemurs won’t eat them all.
I’m not sure how Sir Richard knows this, but he is a billionaire, and I trust that. I’ll bet none of the cranky scientists are billionaires.
Anyway, Sir Richard said he’s simply trying to help the lemurs, which are an endangered species, just like the geckos. And who are we to say that one endangered species is more important than another?
Really all I’m saying is this: In an awesomeness competition, a lemur would trounce a gecko any day.
As a matter of fact, I think the lemurs are so awesome that Sir Richard ought to consider bringing other endangered species to Mosquito Island.
First and foremost, as you may have guessed, I have in mind the giant panda. Much like lemurs, these bears are cute, loveable, intelligent — and totally awesome.
Until now, they have mainly lived in cooler climates and zoos.
Mosquito Island could become the only place in the world where tourists can lounge on a beach and watch pandas frolicking in the sand. Perhaps the bears could also be outfitted with saddles and converted into an eco-friendly mode of transportation.
Now, I can already hear what the cranky scientists are going to say: “People shouldn’t tamper with wildlife! Haven’t you seen the documentary about the guy who got eaten by grizzly bears in Alaska?”
But panda attacks are rare. Sure, the bears might take the odd tourist. But if, say, 1,000 tourists visit Mosquito in a given year, who would notice the difference?
Anyway, the victims would probably be small children.
Of course, Sir Richard would also need to bring in something for the pandas to eat. But this works out well, because they eat bamboo, and many bamboo species happen to be endangered, too.
If you ask me, replacing some of Mosquito’s native vegetation with rare bamboo would be pretty awesome.
Furthermore, I see no reason to stop with lemurs, giant pandas and bamboo. There are literally thousands of endangered species, what with the horrible environmental degradation plaguing the planet.
Take the African white-bellied pangolin. Never heard of it? Most tourists haven’t either. But they’ll be thrilled to find that this anteater-like creature rolls up into a tight ball that can be used for a game of beach bocce.
The Aldabra flying-fox, which is basically an awesome-looking bat, is another possibility, as is the Tazmanian devil.
And why not throw in a few black rhinos, some Asian elephants and a family of Bengal tigers for good measure?
As long as we’re saving the world, we might as well include a few other species simply because they have funny names: the black wallaroo, which looks like a tiny kangaroo; the akikiki, a small Hawaiian bird; the African viviparous toad; and the Titicaca grebe, a flightless South American bird.
Meanwhile, the waters around Necker Island could be stocked with endangered marine wildlife.
By that, of course, I mean manatees. The enormous, friendly beasts lounging just off the shoreline would be sure to put tourists in a relaxing mood.
But just in case they’re the adventurous type, why not bring in a few great white sharks as well? Maybe they would even eat some of the invasive lionfish that have been invading the Caribbean ever since some jerk released them into the waters off the coast of Florida.
Yes, Mosquito Island could easily become the most endangered-species-friendly island in the world.
I know exactly what the cranky scientists will say. They’ll worry that all the different animals won’t coexist peacefully. And they might be right.
But if you think outside the box, you can capitalise on that sort of problem.
If the island gets overpopulated with non-native animals, why not make a reality TV show about it? Tourists would be thrilled to get a front row seat.
What could be more awesome than that?