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Elephant Poaching Rates In Africa Declining, But Iconic Animal Under Threat

Reportedly, in Africa elephant poaching rates have begun to drop down after attaining a peak level in 2011, an international group of scientists concluded. Nevertheless, the team stated that the continent’s elephant population stays threatened without persisting action to deal with poverty, lower corruption and declining demand of ivory. The research—which comprised scientists from the University of Freiburg, the University of York and the CITES (Convention for the International Trade in Endangered Species), discloses a decrease in the annual poaching death rate from an evaluated peak of more than 10% in 2011 to 4% in 2017.

It is predicted there are almost 350,000 elephants in Africa, but around 10–15,000 are killed every year by poachers. At present poaching rates, elephants are in peril of being virtually eradicated from the continent, staying alive only in small and heavily protected pockets. Dr. Colin Beale—Study’s Author from the University of York—said, “We are observing a downturn in poaching that is obviously optimistic news, but it is still beyond what we feel is sustainable so the elephant populaces are declining. The poaching rates appear to respond chiefly to ivory prices in South-East Asia and we cannot expect to succeed without dealing with the demand in that region.” The study was published in Nature Communications.

On a similar note, previously Southern African leaders looked for the ways to supervise elephant populations. Leaders from four African countries held meetings in Botswana to manage the global largest population of elephants better, in the middle of growing worries over poaching, conflict with humans, and loss of habitat. Mokgweetsi Masisi—Botswana’s President—whose country has the largest elephant population in Africa, informed his fellow leaders that it was the moment the region comes up with a universal plan to manage the huge mammals.


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