Saturday 31 December 2016

China finally announces a complete ban on its ivory trade by the end of 2017

On Friday December 30th China announced a complete ban on all ivory trade, and processing, to be implemented by the end of 2017.

The sale and processing of ivory by the first batch of traders will stop by 31st March 2017 and all registered traders will be phased out by the end of the year.

It is thought that 70%  of the trade in ivory takes place in China. Other big traders are Hong Kong and Japan, although the Japanese deny (wrongly) that there is any illegal ivory in their domestic market and state that they do not need to close it as it does not contribute to the poaching crisis.

International attention is now focusing on Japan, which voted against all CITES proposals to protect elephants. But a recent report by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) found that the nation’s elephant tusk registration system is being subject to fraud and allows for poached tusks  from Africa to be sold legally in the domestic market.

Hong Kong has announced previously that it will also close its domestic market.

This is a massive step towards saving the elephant and for once I cannot praise the Chinese government enough for their decision.

However - let's hope that this does not simply mean that the trade will mushroom in other states such as Laos, Cambodia or Burma (Myanmar).

                                                                  "Thank you China"

Thursday 15 December 2016

China will soon announce when it is closing its legal ivory markets

China is set to announce when it will close its legal ivory carving factories. Last year, the world’s largest market for both legal and illegal ivory said it would shut down commercial sales within the country. But did not set a timeline.

At the time, conservationists described the announcement as the “single greatest measure” in the fight to save elephants from poaching. Wildlife advocates have since urged Beijing to get on with the job.

Advocates for the total ban believe it will discourage local demand for black market ivory and shut off smugglers’ attempts to launder poached tusks into legal markets.

“I think the Chinese government is serious about shutting down the domestic market in ivory in China,” Wildlife Conservation Society ivory trade policy analyst Simon Hedges said last week.

“Our government is serious upon any promise made to the world,” said Wei Ji, a wildlife researcher who does consulting work for China’s largest environmental NGO.

Tuesday 13 December 2016

Poaching in Tarangire, Tanzania

At least 167 people were arrested in Tarangire National Park in Manyara Region between January to October this year allegedly for poaching or illegal grazing of Livestock.

Some of the suspects have already s appeared in court where some were sentenced to jail.

Other cases are still pending in regional and district courts.

Tarangire now uses a triple Global Positioning System (GPS), a device that enables park rangers monitor the park better. The device helps rangers to track down poachers.

The surging number of livestock in the park has been attributed to the lack of land management strategies by villages. Also wildlife is being killed in the areas adjacent to the park. Recently six elephants were killed.

Tarangire is one of the most economically viable National Parks in the country and protecting it is of utmost important to the country's developing tourist infrastructure.

Wednesday 7 December 2016

For Parque Nacional de Limpopo read Slaughterhouse

The Kuger is attached to the Parque Nacional de Limpopo  in Mozambique on its eastern side.

Researchers have been tracking about 40 collared elephants in and around Parque Nacional de Limpopo, the Mozambican section on the huge Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park (GLTP) administered by the Peace Parks Foundation. The aim was to understand the area’s “fear landscape” – how elephants navigate within risky human infested areas.

Sadly there is a lot to fear and some of them have already been shot by poachers. In fact in the last five years the elephant population has halved with only about 1250 left.

In September, Michelle Henley of Elephants Alive flew the northern sections of the PNL and found no elephants. “It was a huge shock and a wake-up call,” she said. “Part of the problem is that Kruger has consolidated its forces to the south to curb rhino poaching, leaving the central and north open to elephant poaching.”

And in the past 12 months 68 elephants were poached in the Kruger. The slaughter is spreading down from the decimated populations of East Africa. Only a couple of years back the South African government was denying that they had any sort of elephant poaching problem.

It's going to get worse - a lot worse.
Do they all have their heads up their arses?