Elephant Poaching Essay

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Many Americans believe that elephant poaching is decreasing each year, however, the population statistics continue to worsen. In Using Poaching Levels and Elephant Distribution to Assess the Conservation Efficacy of Private, Communal and Government Land in Northern Kenya, researchers write, “Over-hunting of wild animals is a primary driver of species decline.” (Festus W. Ihwagi et al.) While humans can be a positive influence by depleting certain animals where overpopulation is a concern, they also contribute a lot of harm. According to Early Age Reproduction in Female Savanna Elephants (Loxodonta Africana) After Severe Poaching, Owens, M. J. and D. Owens write that in 1970, Africa had an estimated 1.3 million elephants on the savannah. By…show more content…
According to Fig. 1, Emily Hutchens, researcher of The Law Never Forgets: An Analysis of the Elephant Poaching Crisis, Failed Polices, and Potential Solutions shows that in 2010, 15,000kg of ivory was taken from poached elephants in Africa. The following year, that number increased to 30,000kg. (13 Hutchens) So what has been done so far to protect them? Starting in 1988, the United States placed a ban on ivory imports and many other countries followed suit to protect the African Savanna Elephants (Hutchens 6). Unfortunately, Hong Kong and Japan continued to allow the material to be imported, and South Africa and Zimbabwe refused to ban the export (Hutchens 3). Locals viewed the elephants as a bother and generally viewed ivory as a precious resource that contributed to their economy. Ironically, the government used the proceeds to fund further elephant conservation efforts that were largely ineffective. So far, prevention efforts have focused primarily on reducing the demand for ivory and increasing security patrol in areas with high elephant populations. When criminals are arrested, the ivory is sequestered and not sold, as any ivory released only encourages and fuels the market. (Hutchens

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