Archive for Ivory Trade

How Poachers Became Caretakers…..

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 29, 2010 by Dori G

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ― Maya Angelou

It is no secret the poaches know animals best. Here is a fantastic TED lecture by  John Kasaona,  a Namibian conservationist who is working on an innovative way to protect endangered animal species  giving nearby villagers (including former poachers) responsibility for caring for the animals. And it’s working and everyone is happy…. Take a look at the video below:

To learn more about John’s organization Integrated Rural Development and Nature Conservation (IRDNC) and their fantastic projects….. CLICK HERE

Family of 10 slaughtered on the Zimbabwe Mozambique border…

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 10, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Poachers shot and killed 10 elephants at one spot in Gonarezhou National Park in Chikombedzi along Zimbabwe’s border with Mozambique and South Africa last week. The elephant carcasses without tusks were found lying along Mutandanjiva River near the road to Ndali communal lands in the north-eastern part of Gonarezhou.

Family of elephants left for dead

Parks and Wildlife Management Authority immediately put a US$1,000 reward for anyone with information leading to the arrest of the poachers. “The carcasses were discovered on June 1 and several spent cartridges from an FN riffle were found on the scene. The tusks were removed in what appeared to be a well-organized professional job.”

Ranger holding bloody ivory

Parks spokesperson Ms Caroline Washaya-Moyo said the newly appointed Parks Director General, Mr Vitalis Chadenga visited Gonarezhou at the weekend to get first hand information and he was satisfied by the level of investigations taking place, with assistance from national security agents.

To read the full article, click here

Acrobatic Pilot Saves Wild Animals in Kenya

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2010 by kendickjerkins

An american acrobatic pilot renowned for her skills at air shows is teaching advanced flying skills to Kenyan pilots to help them spot wildlife poachers. Patty Wagstaff has won three acrobatic flying championships. She also trains pilots and has been lending her time and expertise to wild elephant conservation. Wildlife poachers have said the top deterrent to poaching wild animals is air patrols. Flying so low and at slower speeds to spot poachers is dangerous for pilots in Kenya who sometimes have only basic flying skills.

Wagstaff teaches them in week-long clinics, partly funded by the Charles A. and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation. From her they learn techniques that reduce mistakes which too often lead to crashes. They love to fly and care about wildlife, so they are happy to take to the sky and spot poachers. Wild elephants have been poached in Kenya for their ivory going back a long time. She has been working with the pilots for six years to reduce and stop it. The pilots there are associated with the Kenya Wildlife Service.

To read the full article, click here

Are elephants an ‘African natural resource’ or of deeper value?

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 27, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Following the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species on Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) held in Qatar, Botswana has threatened to pull out of the convention, and remove elephants from the list of species under protection. As expected, the elephants issue dominated this year’s CITES debate and further divided African countries. It has also emerged that Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries are unhappy with CITES. The convention banned the ivory trade. Pulling out, which is defined as reservation by species, has been mooted as a possibility, which will allow the countries to sell their ivory stockpiles.

SADC states, including Botswana, South Africa, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe, will meet throughout April, in Malawi to work out a strategy. The possibility to go into reservation follows on the proposal backed by 23 other elephant range nations that would have extended the trade moratorium on ivory trade to 20 years, from the current nine years.

Botswana has about 18 tonnes of legal ivory in its stocks and spends over P700 000 annually to secure the stock. At the last sale the country earned over US$7 million. The decision by CITES to reject Zambia’s proposal has been described as “a ban on the use of African natural resources”. According to the IMWC World Conservation Trust, these decisions mean that “significant ivory stocks will now be left in storage instead of generating revenue for use in elephant conservation. Africans are effectively being barred from utilizing their own natural resources.”

As the war on poaching rages on and the subject of ivory remains highly controversial many questions are raised regarding the fate of elephants. Are they, as some say a natural resource…better yet a national resource or do elephants hold a higher, irreplaceable and invaluable spot in this world?

(Credit: Chas Rob)

(Credit: Miha Krofel)

To read the full article, click here

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Africa’s Lost Eden: A Rare Yet Hopeful Success Story

Posted in Africa: Elephants, Africa: Lions, Africa: Primates, Africa: Rhinos, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Mozambique was torn apart by civil war in 1977.  During that war, 1,000,000 people died as well as almost the entire zebra, buffalo, and hippo population due to cross-fire killing. About 95% of the large animal population was decimated in Gorongosa National Park in addition to the rampant poaching to fund the war effort.  This in turn drastically affected the overall ecology of the region as some of the major players were no longer there: vegetation grew, birds lost their nesting habitat, fires began much more common, etc.

The park was shut down and abandoned in 1983 as clashes between opposing forces waged on for another decade. However, a relocation program was implemented in which elephants, buffalo and hopefully soon, other animals will be reintroduced into the Gorongosa National Park.  A group of scientists are trying to save this park and the species that used to be there so that another chunk of their only remaining  territory is not lost. Led by the US based Carr foundation, in collaboration with the government of Mozambique, the foundation invested about $10 million into the parks restoration between 2004-2007. Due to the rapid success of the three year project the government of Mozambique and the Carr foundation agreed in 2008 to sign a 20-year agreement to restore and co-manage the park. Today thousands of visitors visit the park annually which is open from 6am – 6pm.

Lioness in Gorongosa National Park

Urema Lake in Gorongosa National Park

A hippo and wading birds back in Gorongosa National Park.

National Geographic Wild has aired a 1 hour special on Gorongosa National Park titled ‘Africa’s Lost Eden’

To read the full article click here

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Chad’s New Elephant Guardians…

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Keeping to his promise to ensure that Chad’s elephants fate will not become the same as in its neighboring countries, President Idriss Deby has deployed a highly trained military unit from the Chadian armed forces to aid in the protection of Zakouma National Park and its flora and fauna. This unit is working in conjunction with the existing ranger teams that are currently on the ground.

President Idriss Deby Burying poached Ivory

The legendary Zakouma National Park
was created in 1963, and was Chad’s first national park, it has an area of almost 3000 square kilometres (1200 square miles) and  is entirely surrounded by the
Bahr Salamat Faunal Reserve, which is a conservation area of roughly 20,600 square kilometres.

Zakuma’s Legendary Elephant Herds

For many years Zakouma was neglected during the period of civil conflict, but with the arrival of President Deby to power a restoration has began and is continuing to date. Zakuma boasts in rich  and diverse wildlife population that includes over 44 species of large mammals as well as many species of birds.

Zakouma National Park has been nominated to become a Unesco World Heritage Site.

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Pangolins….The Other Bushmeat

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 23, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Throughout much of Southeast Asia and countries like Vietnam there is still a thriving market for bushmeat and animal parts. The fact of the matter is that it’s still culturally acceptable in some of these countries to eat these animals and use their parts for medicinal purposes. Saturday, security staff at southern Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat airport on Saturday confiscated 33 live Pangolins, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported. The pangolins, also known as scaly anteaters, had been sold to customers in the country’s north at a price of one million dong (53 dollars) per kilogram, Tuoi Tre reported.

Demand for pangolin meat, with its supposedly medicinal and aphrodisiac qualities, is widespread in China and Vietnam. There is a high demand for pangolin scales for traditional medicines in many parts of the world. Meat is eaten by indigenous peoples and hides are also used to make shoes. One of the main importers of pangolin skins from 1980-1985 was the United States of America. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) list pangolins as endangered.

Separately, Vietnamese police have seized about 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of ivory near the border with China, a newspaper reported on Sunday. Traffic police made the discovery after stopping a car early Friday morning, said Tuoi Tre, which did not say if any arrests were made.

To Read The Full Article…Click Here

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