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World Wildlife Day: tribespeople denounce persecution in the name of ‘conservation’

To mark World Wildlife Day on Tuesday, Survival International, the global movement for tribal peoples’ rights, exposes abuses faced by tribal peoples in the name of wildlife “conservation”. Powerful video testimonies by Bayaka “Pygmies” in the Republic of Congo highlight their intimate connection with their lands and the abuses they face at the hands of anti-poaching squads – who are often funded by large conservation organizations like the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). The lives of thousands of Baiga tribespeople in India were destroyed after being forcibly and illegally evicted from Kanha Tiger Reserve – home of the “Jungle Book”. Their communities have been […]

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kenya ivory burn

Kenya leads the way as UK and Tanzania lag behind

Today’s burning of 15 tons of ivory and tusks by Kenya has shown the way for other African countries who want to make a stand against elephant poaching. At the burn in Nairobi National Park, President Uhuru Kenyatta committed to burning the remain stockpile of Kenya by the end of this year. Before the 15 tons of tusks going up in flames it was estimated that Kenya had a stockpile of 100 tons. Kenya has taken a step that other countries in Africa should follow. As the pile of tusks were being built the UK and Tanzania signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the now dated and ineffective Elephant Protection Initiative […]

online sales

Social media becomes new trading hub for wildlife in China

Transactions for illegal wildlife products, particularly ivory, are shifting away from online retailers and onto social media platforms according to TRAFFIC’s research into the Chinese-language online retail community. This is a key finding of a new report, Moving targets: Tracking online sales of illegal wildlife products in China, which discloses the results of routine market monitoring of China’s online retailers that began in 2006 and is released today, World Wildlife Day. At its peak in March 2012, more than 4,000 new advertisements per month for illegal wildlife products were appearing online on Chinese language online retail websites, finds the new report. More than half of the illegal products offered comprised […]

elephant

Kenya to burn 15 tons of ivory on World Wildlife Day

There are reports from at least 2 official Chinese newspapers that Kenya is to mark World Wildlife Day by burning 15 tons of elephant tusk and ivory. While we’ve not yet been able to get an official source from Kenya to confirm or deny the report, both Xinhua (China’s state run news service) and China.org.cn are reporting that preparations are underway for the destruction. Kenya Wildlife Service Corporate Communications Manager Paul Udoto told Xinhua that the KWS are unable to put a value on the elephant tusks set to be burned as Kenya does not recognise trade in ivory as being legitimate. The latest tusk burn is Kenya’s third and […]

gorilla

Virunga cleared of rebels claim

An unnamed official at the United Nations has claimed that the Virunga National Park has finally been cleared of rebel forces. The UN military adviser supported the claims of the DR Congo government that its army has retaken control of vast areas of the park following a weekend offensive. Joint operations by the United Nations forces and Congolese army was meant to take place in January but were delayed after the UN force pulled out. The UN demanded that the two DR Congo generals heading the army operation were replaced as they were under investigation for human rights abuses. The DR Congo government refused and decided to conduct the operation […]

Li Yuchun

Teaching elephants to handstand and taking chimps shopping – the life of a WWF Ambassador

A Chinese pop sensation who is a Wildlife Ambassador for the WWF has come under fire after taking part in a reality TV show based at a zoo. In the series a number of Chinese celebrities take part in activities with animals such as teaching elephants how to perform and do handstands or taking chimps out clothes shopping. The show is called Wonderful Friends and is based at the Chimelong Safari Park in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province. The show has caused a viral storm on the Chinese social media site Sina Weibo.  Online science channel guokr.com also published a story on Saturday about inappropriate interactions between celebrities and chimpanzee cubs, including […]

ground pangolin africa

Fight over pangolin scales goes to court

The Ugandan courts will today decide on whether to issue an emergency injunction to prevent the export of 7 tons of pangolin scales worth USD4.3 million. The injunction will be decided in advance of a court hearing over the legality of Uganda Wildlife Authority ability to issue an export permit for the scales. While the original case was between Greenwatch – a Ugandan environmental organization – and the Ugandan Wildlife Authority, the trader and current owner of the pangolin scales is also claiming that he should be heard as a defendant because of the cost to his business if the permit is revoked. According to the particulars of the case, […]

vanquita

Mexico commits $37 million to world’s smallest porpoise

The vaquita is the world’s smallest porpoise and with less than 100 remaining its future may not be certain. Living only in the Upper Sea of Cortez the porpoise is threatened by the gillnets used by fishermen to catch the totoaba fish. With just 25 breeding females in the population any more losses could be devastating for the species. Mexico has just announced a $37 million action plan to conserve the species and it involves the porpoises being protected by naval drones and high-speed patrol boats. The plan announced by Environment Department official Rafael Pacchiano will last for 2 years and will see a ban on gillnets being bought in later […]

Badger baiting rises in England and Wales but convictions drop.

DNA breakthrough sends badger baiters to jail

Three badger baiters from Rotherham have been sent to prison for 12 weeks after DNA forensic evidence was used for the first time. The RSPCA used the skills of the Scottish Government Science and Advice Service for Scottish Agriculture (SASA) to place the men at the scene of the crime. Antonio Miguel Alonso-Brown. aged 24, of Shelley Drive, Herringthorpe, Nathan Swift, 20, of Hague Avenue, Rawmarsh and his brother Liam, aged 24, of the same address, all in Rotherham, were caught by police near a badger sett off St John’s Road, Unstone, Derbyshire as they tried to flee. Behind them they had left a badger with a smashed in skull […]

baby elephant

85% of Thai ivory traders close in 3 months

As the deadline looms for Thailand to get its domestic ivory trade in order or risk trade bans under CITES the number of ivory traders in Thailand’s main ivory market has dropped by 85%.  As traders have not been able to provide sufficient evidence of the source of their ivory the number of shops in Chatuchak and Tha Prachan have fallen from 200 to just over 30. In order to avoid being subject to CITES species trade bans Thailand was required to improve it’s monitoring of its domestic ivory trade. While it claimed that its domestic ivory trade was met purely by domestic ivory the figures did not add up – […]

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Ivory poaching hurting elephant population

Ivory poaching hurting elephant population

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Combating Wildlife Trafficking in Mozambique & South Africa

Combating Wildlife Trafficking in Mozambique & South Africa

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ALD interview with Dr. Richard Leakey

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