Just before dawn, a profound quiet falls over the African savannah...and as the first glimmer of light approaches, many of the night's hunters are still—except for one.
When the shots ring out and the earth shakes with the fall of the bull elephant, the matriarch runs, trumpeting her fear and outrage. She turns to gather her herd, including six calves, behind her. Trunks lifted, they face their attackers...but only one single female survived that morning's slaughter in Kenya's Tsavo East National Park.
The matriarch, her children, and two youngsters with small tusks were no match for the poachers armed with AK-47 and G3 rifles.
Poachers are attacking and killing elephants for profit
- 8 of 10 elephants are killed for their ivory
- Tens of thousands of elephants are slaughtered for their tusks every year
On average, 1 park ranger is killed per week trying to protect wildlife against poaching
The number of elephants in Africa today is only about half of what it was estimated to be just 40 years ago
The illegal wildlife trade is a booming black market business, worth more than $10 billion annually
Poachers use helicopers, AK-47s, powerful veterinary drugs, and more to kill elephants and the rangers protecting them
- At this rate, elephants won't survive 10 years in the wild
You can help AWF win $50,000 in the Firefox challenge to combat the ivory trade.
How? Just check out the leaderboard, here. To win, we have to be in 1st place! To help, just join our fundraising team and donate what you can.
Donate the price of your morning coffee, ask everyone in your office to donate one dollar, or ask for donations to your fundraiser instead of holiday gifts.
Every dollar matters.
Also, please remember to join the fundraising team and share this fundraiser. If you can't donate, sharing goes a long way.
Thank you for all you do!
About African Wildlife Foundation:
The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) is the leading international conservation organization focused solely on Africa. We believe that protecting Africa’s wildlife and wild landscapes is the key to the future prosperity of Africa and its people – and for over 50 years, we have made it our work to help ensure that Africa’s wild resources endure.
All photos courtesy of: Billy Dodson