August 7, 2016
The Trade in Tusks
- as seen by -Julie Larsen Maher
Elephants are near the top of the illegal trade list for products made from wild animals.
The multinational appetite to own artwork carved from elephant tusks has dealt a crushing blow to these plant-eating pachyderms that roam the forests and savannas of Africa. According to the Wildlife Conservation Society, African elephants have been reduced from 1.2 million elephants in the 1970s to approximately 450,000 today.
Passing laws that ban ivory sales, along with continuing international communication and conservation efforts, will help to protect one of the world’s most iconic species from extinction.
But, the single most effective solution to halting the trade in tusks is for consumers to act responsibly and not covet or own any piece of a dead elephant.
EDITOR’S NOTE: August 12, 2016 is World Elephant Day, see “Investigating Ivory” on Wild View. And thank a ranger. Read about the men and women that risk their lives to protect wildlife, including Africa’s elephants.