Zimbabwe Authorities Foil Parks Employees’ Bid to Smuggle Ivory

By Oscar Nkala A senior ecologist and two game rangers employed by the Parks and Wildlife Management Authority in Hwange National Park have been arrested in connection with a foiled bid to smuggle at least eight elephant tusks to an unspecified destination via Harare International Airport. At a press conference in Harare earlier this week, parks…

What Do New Cyanide Poisonings Mean for Zimbabwe’s Elephants?

By Oscar Nkala Zimbabwe’s Parks and Wildlife Management Authority says laboratory tests on the kidneys and livers of the 14 elephants found dead over the past two weeks in Hwange and Matusadona National Parks confirm that they were killed by cyanide-laced salt licks and fruit used as bait. This suggests that poachers may be returning to…

Aerial Survey Provides Bird’s Eye View of Plight of Elephants in Zambia

By Eric T. Schultz, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Zambia and David Banks, Managing Director, The Nature Conservancy Africa Whether you are floating down the Zambezi River, eye to eye with curious elephants on the shoreline, or flying low over a thunderous herd, observing elephants is an unforgettable experience. The Zambian Wildlife Authority (ZAWA)…

The Forgotten Elephants of the Leuser Ecosystem

The future of the critically endangered Sumatran elephant hangs on a thread. Palm oil plantations have converted 90 percent of prime Sumatran elephant habitat to a monoculture desert. The lowland rainforests of the Leuser Ecosystem are the world’s best remaining habitat for the Sumatran elephant yet they are being bulldozed, often illegally, for palm oil everyday.

Undercover Video Confirms Hong Kong’s Retail Market Is “Front” for Smuggled Ivory

By Laurel Neme and Maraya Cornell Hong Kong’s retail ivory market acts as both a cover for smuggled ivory and an incentive. A new report, The Hard Truth, released September 7 by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)–Hong Kong, reveals how fundamental flaws in the existing regulatory system help fuel the illegal trade. Hong Kong…

LETTER TO THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY: It is time to formally recognize conflict ivory

The 70th meeting of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) opened on September 15 amid an ongoing humanitarian crisis of refugees and migrants escaping various conflicts. The world’s heads of state are expected to discuss not only their fate but also what exacerbates the violence they flee.

East African Smugglers Push Ivory Out of the Continent

Elephant poaching and ivory trafficking in East Africa is driven not only by foreign consumers but also by African nationals who actively “push” ivory to these markets. A recent report, Pushing Ivory Out of Africa: A Criminal Intelligence of Elephant Poaching and Ivory Trafficking in East Africa, released July 20 by Global Eye and the…

#FindBahati: Rangers Race to Locate a Snared Rhino Calf

A motion-detecting camera trap set up in the Tsavo National Park in Kenya has captured distressing images of a rhino calf with a deep snare wound round his neck, initiating a park-wide search for the injured animal this week.

Dogs and Informants Track Down Elephant’s Killers

By J.D. O’Kasick

His black snout twitching furiously among the tall grasses, Rocky heaved ahead on the scent trail. Rocky’s handler, along with five armed rangers, followed the German shepherd’s lead, scanning the savanna for footprints and discarded evidence.

The night before, on July 26, poachers had killed another elephant bull at Manyara Ranch.

Video: Inside the Largest Ivory Seizure in West Africa

When a Togo Customs official decided to turn around his X-ray machine and inspect freight leaving his country, instead of looking only at cargo coming into the country, he uncovered what at the time was to be the biggest seizure of illegal ivory in the history of West Africa. In this outtake from the National Geographic…

Video: Ivory Trade and Slave Trade Linked Throughout History

The trade in elephant ivory dates at least back to the days of the slave trade in Africa. Investigative Journalist Bryan Christy visits the home of renowned 19th Century slave trader and ivory merchant Tippu Tip in Zanzibar.

Video: “Toy” Drone Deployed in Ivory Investigation

In Lomé, Togo, investigative journalist Bryan Christy learns of a lumberyard suspected of being at the center of the illegal ivory trade.  As clear outsiders, he and the video production crew must find a way to take a closer look without breaking their cover. Befriending the children and showing off their “toy” drone might just…

Video: Inside Togo’s Voodoo Fetish Market

Bryan Christy visits the fetish market in Togo as part of his investigation in Africa’s ivory trade. He explains the presence of dead, dried animals on display and tells about going behind the scenes with vendors and seeing live animals and wonders if there is elephant ivory among the “behind the scenes” specimens for sale.

Video: The Accepting Nature of Orphaned Baby Elephants

Bryan Christy visits the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust elephant orphanage in Kenya and marvels at the accepting nature of the juvenile elephants, which escort him as they are released into the wild and join adult elephants.

How to Save Elephants: Obliterate Ivory Stockpiles Simultaneously

To save African elephants from extinction, “range states should put their ivory stockpiles beyond commercial use immediately and simultaneously,” says South African economist Ross Harvey.