Friday, January 20, 2012

a very bad year for elephants

Elephant poaching in Africa hit record levels in 2011. More tusks were seized last year than in any year since the 1989 ban on the ivory trade, a ban that was enacted to save elephants from extinction. 

Due to the huge demand in Asia –– specifically China’s suddenly wealthy –– elephant poaching is on the rise. Approximately 10 tons were seized in 2010; and in 2011, that figure increased to more than 23 tons. In terms of animals, that means approximately 100 elephants per day are being killed across Africa; 36,500 a year. 

Unless something is done, elephants could be gone from the wild in twenty years’ time. For more information or to get involved in working toward a solution, check out Big Life Foundation, Tusk Trust, or Save the Elephants. For a more in-depth read, check out this article in Vanity Fair.

{Photographs by Nick Brandt}