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Elephant poaching declines in East Africa

By John Odyek

Added 24th October 2017 03:46 PM

While the outlook for elephants looks good in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia, in Central Africa, there have been dramatic losses of elephant populations over the last decade, with levels of illegal killing remaining very high.

Elephants 703x422

While the outlook for elephants looks good in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia, in Central Africa, there have been dramatic losses of elephant populations over the last decade, with levels of illegal killing remaining very high.

WILDLIFE | ELEPHANT POACHING

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) reports that poaching of elephants in Uganda and other East African countries has declined remarkably.

Ivory seizures around the world hit record levels last year, with elephant poaching in Africa declining for a fifth year in a row, the report says. It said about 40 tonnes of trafficked ivory was recovered.

The report noted that while poaching killed 111,000 African elephants over the last decade, in most places, it appeared to be levelling off. The organisation has welcomed the news, but sounded a note of caution.

"The global collective effort that is underway is starting to reap positive results, but we are certainly not there yet," the organisation's secretary general, John Scanlon, said.

The report said the record weight of seizures could be down to better awareness and law enforcement.

Scanlon said there was particularly good news in Eastern Africa, which has been badly hit by poaching in the last 10 years.

"There has been a steady decline in poaching levels since its peak in 2011, and the analysis from 2016 concludes that overall poaching trends have now dropped to pre-2008 levels," he said.

While the outlook for elephants looks good in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia, in Central Africa, there have been dramatic losses of elephant populations over the last decade, with levels of illegal killing remaining very high.

He said it was now imperative for conservationists to drive home the advantage while the political momentum is available in many countries to combat poaching.

 

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