Sunday, March 19, 2017

World Elephant Day started August 12, 2012.

January 10, 2017
By Katie Souza

...African and Asian (click here) elephants alike are in danger in their natural habitats due to a not so natural predator. Poachers slaughtering elephants for their valuable tusks are putting elephants closer and closer to extinction. As a result, in 1979 there was an estimated 1.3 million elephants, while in 2016 the population plummeted to only 352,271.
It is not only the elephant population that is affected by the decline but the entire ecosystem. World Elephant Day explains, “Elephants are a keystone species. It means they create and maintain the ecosystems in which they live and make it possible for a myriad of plant and animal species to live in those environments as well.”
In reaction to the plunge of elephant numbers, organizations and countries are taking action to protect these sacred animals.
For instance, according to CNN, “Botswana Defense Force (BDF) has deployed an infantry battalion of specially-trained soldiers; more than 700 are stationed across 40 bases in the far north,” where soldiers are told to “shoot-to-kill” the poachers. Likewise, the global ivory trade has been banned since 1989, according to National Geographic.
However, not all governments are willing to stop the profitable business of domestic ivory trade. China has the largest illegal ivory trade, which is due to the limited legal trade of ivory within the country.  According to World Elephant Day“Between 2010 and 2014, the price of ivory in China tripled,” and thus, “As of 2016, there are still more African elephants being killed for ivory than are being born…”...