Unless we take decisive action now, we’re facing a future without elephants. More than 35,000 elephants die every year in Africa, that’s 1 every 15 minutes or 96 elephants a day. If the poaching continues, African forest elephants face near extinction in 10 years, with East Africa’s savannah elephants not far behind. The reasons: inadequate protection for elephants, insufficient efforts to halt ivory trafficking, and skyrocketing demand for ivory. Rising East Asian consumer wealth fuels the demand; organized crime cartels control the traffic.
Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) is leading the charge to counter the slaughter. For decades we have stemmed poaching where we work, protected habitat, and helped elephant populations recover. But rising demand for ivory requires new efforts to ensure their future. WCS and our partners work to stop criminals from slaughtering elephants in some of their largest habitats in Central and Eastern Africa. Together with governments and local communities, we recruit, equip, train, and deploy ecoguards. We use local intelligence networks and aerial surveillance to focus enforcement, and ensure patrols get the backup they need from the police, army, and courts.
These methods work: forest elephant densities are seven times higher where they are protected. But pressure is mounting. In four landscapes of Gabon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, and Mozambique where we have elephant protection programs, 44,000 elephants are at immediate risk. We need your help to stop the killing, stop the trafficking, and stop the demand. Thank you for your donation to help save elephants.
Please join us at 96Elephants.org.
Click Here to check out the Google+ Hangout of the event including a virtual tour, speeches, celeb cameos and an expert Q&A on Friday.
Images: Julie Larsen Maher ©WCS