Wednesday 19 December 2018

Kenya: 26 Elephants Die in Maasai Mara in 90 Days

Mystery surrounds the death of 26 elephants in the Maasai Mara ecosystem in the past three months.
Although the cause of the deaths remains "unknown", at least 11 of the jumbos are suspected to have been poisoned.

In November alone, seven deaths were categorised as "unknown" but there was evidence pointing toward poisoning, a damning report published last week by the Mara Elephant Project (MEP) says.

Tuesday 27 November 2018

Giraffe meat being sold in Kenya for human consumption

Giraffe meat is finding its way onto Kenyan plates marketed as beef, conservationists have warned.
Results from recent DNA analysis of meat being sold in butcheries, particularly in the coastal region, have shown components of giraffe meat.

Other animals commonly showing up are buffalo and Grant's gazelle. The meat is often diced and mixed in with beef to hide it.

Tuesday 6 November 2018

Snare recovery

From 2001 and 2016, a total of 34,333 snares were recovered by AWF program personnel. Estimates indicate that approximately 10% of snares placed in the bush result in the killing of wildlife; thus, approximately 3,433 animal lives were saved through de-snaring initiatives over those years.

Tuesday 30 October 2018

China allows the use of tiger parts and rhino horn in tradtional medecine

China unveiled new rules on Monday that would allow the use of rhino horn and tiger parts for some medical and cultural purposes, watering down a decades-old ban in a move conservation group WWF said could have “devastating consequences”.

China’s State Council issued a notice replacing its 1993 ban on the trade of tiger bones and rhino horn. The new rules ban the sale, use, import and export of such products, but allow exceptions under “special circumstances”, such as medical and scientific research, educational use, and as part of “cultural exchanges”.

This is absolute madness. A crime commited by a Government.

Tuesday 9 October 2018

Almost a ton of Pangolin scales found in Vietnam

Hanoi authorities on Friday found pangolin scales and ivory weighing almost 805 kilograms plus 193 kilograms of ivory, which had arrived by air from Nigeria. The latest haul is further evidence of weak enforcement in Vietnam that allows the illegal trade in wildlife parts to flourish.

Pangolins are treasured in Vietnam and the region for their meat and alleged medicinal properties of their scales. Vietnam has banned trade in tusks and pangolins, but the practice has continued.

Since the shutdown of the Chinese ivory market it has been observed that the traders are moving to nearby countries including Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia to continue their business where there is little or no enforcement.

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Huge shipment of rhino horn seized in Kuala Lumpur

Authorities have seized rhinoceros horns worth nearly RM48 million (US$ 11.5 million)  at Kuala Lumpur's cargo terminal, bound for Vietnam, the largest ever haul of horn discovered here.
Malaysia is a major transit point for the illegal trafficking of endangered species to other Asian countries.
Officials acting on a tip-off seized 50 horns, weighing about 116kg, at the cargo terminal of Kuala Lumpur airport on 13 August, a wildlife official said in a statement.

Friday 20 July 2018

Major investigation exposes horrific tiger slaughterhouse in the Czech Republic

Czech Republic authorities raided premises in Prague and other locations, revealing a nightmarish tiger slaughterhouse at the centre of an international criminal trade ring.
Dubbed Operation Trophy, the raids were the culmination of two-and-a-half years of work and employed more than 200 enforcement officers from customs, police and the Czech Environmental Inspectorate (CEI).

In the illegal slaughterhouse, they found:
* a freshly killed tiger, shot through the eye to leave its skin undamaged
* a boiler for preparation of tiger glue
* many tiger claws, bones and skins
* dozens of dead animals, often in a state of decay.


Canada: Black bear poaching operation busted by Quebec wildlife ministry.

 Sixty-four people allegedly involved in a black bear poaching operation have been caught by Quebec’s Ministry of Forests, Wildlife and Parks.

According to a statement from the ministry released Wednesday, the individuals were illegally trapping and selling black bear gall bladders. The gall bladders — specifically the bile inside — apparently are used by some practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine, said Jasmin Larouche, director of wildlife protection for the Saguenay—Lac-St-Jean region.

The suspects, who come from the Saguenay, Mauricie, Côte-Nord and Laval regions, face 121 charges and could have to pay up to $328,000 in fines, Larouche said.

Tuesday 17 July 2018

South Africa almost doubles lion bone export quota

South Africa is to nearly double the number of captive lion skeletons to be exported, from 800 to 1,500 a year.

There have been significant shipments of lion parts in the past 10 years to South-East Asia and China where they are marketed as tiger, further exacerbating demand for the world’s most endangered big cats.

There are fewer than 4,000 tigers left in the wild and they are still being targeted by consumers who want ‘the real thing’.

Leopards are also being targeted for their bones and body parts, again for the markets in SE Asia and China .

Tuesday 10 July 2018

107 Wildlife trackng cameras destroyed by poachers in Cambodia

At least 107 cameras deployed for tracking endangered wildlife in the northeast provinces of Cambodia were dismantled or destroyed by poachers, according to a provincial environment official on Thursday.

Mondulkiri Provincial Environment Department director Keo Sopheak told The Post that the dismantling of the cameras showed that poaching in the Sre Pok and Phnom Prich wildlife sanctuaries continued at an alarming rate.

Sopheak said that data his team collected from other cameras indicated that poachers stole and destroyed cameras in the two wildlife sanctuaries. They wore civilian clothing but were armed with AK-47 and M-16 rifles.

“We cannot identify the perpetrators as the data collected from the other cameras’ vantage points allow us to only make out their bodies.

“Nonetheless, the Environment Department has filed a complaint with the Mondulkiri provincial police and the provincial Military Police requesting that they investigate further and arrest those responsible,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sopheak estimated that the cost of the damaged cameras was about $30,000.

Tuesday 12 June 2018

Another lion lured out of a National Park to be shot as a trophy

Heard this one before somewhere?  Does the name Cecil come to mind?

So this time an American hunter lured a male lion around eight or nine years old out of the Kruger National Park and onto a private reserve where it was legal to shoot it. And he did. So where exactly was the 'hunt' part of that?

Legal but unethical and certainly immoral.

I ask this question. If rare animals are protected  from being hunted in the USA  why is it Ok to hunt rare animals in Africa? The justification is.......

The truth is, it's greed, dollars and somebody with an ego problem and very little brain out there who doesn't give a damn about the wildlife, or the right of the rest of humanity to view it in the wild - alive.


Wednesday 23 May 2018

Rangers find 109,217 poaching snares in a single park in Cambodia

Rangers find 109,217 poaching snares in a single park in Cambodia.

Snares – either metal or rope – are indiscriminately killing wildlife across Southeast Asia, from elephants to mouse deer. The problem has become so bad that scientists are referring to protected areas in the region as “empty forests.”

A simple break cable for motorbikes can kill a tiger, a bear, even a young elephant in Southeast Asia. Local hunters use these ubiquitous wires to create snares – indiscriminate forest bombs – that are crippling and killing Southeast Asia’s most charismatic species and many lesser-known animals as well. 

A fact from a new paper in Biodiversity Conservation highlights the scale of this epidemic: in Cambodia’s Southern Cardamom National Park rangers with the Wildlife Alliance removed 109,217 snares over just six years .

Friday 4 May 2018

Three black rhinos killed in Meru NP Kenya

Wildlife conservation suffered a blow after three rhinos were killed and their horns cut off in the Meru National Park on Wednesday.

The Kenya Wildlife Service said two black rhinos and a calf were killed in the park's rhino sanctuary at 6.30pm.

Rangers efforts to lay an ambush for the poachers were unsuccessful, the service said.

Wednesday 11 April 2018

Poaching on the increase in Botswana

According to a report from the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, in 2017/18, 62 elephants were killed compared to 42 in 2016/17. Similarly, there has been an increase in trafficking of elephant tusks as evident that 109 tusks have been trafficked in 2017/2018 (as of end of February) compared to 48 in 2016/2017.

The report also indicates that the Kgalagadi, Gantsi (Central Kalahari Game Reserve in particular), Ngamiland, Central and Chobe Districts are highly affected by poaching due to the fact that most species are concentrated in these areas, especially elephants and predators. Elephants are mostly poached in the Linyanti and Shaile areas along the Namibian Border.

Most poached animals are elephants for the ivory trading, antelopes for consumption.

Wednesday 28 March 2018

Grace Mugabe investigated for ivory smuggling

The former first lady of Zimbabwe, Grace Mugabe, is suspected by wildlife officials to have smuggled ivory worth millions of dollars.

Mrs Mugabe faced accusations on Sunday that she had taken ivory from the country's stockpiles during her time as first lady and illegally sent pieces as gifts to high-profile individuals in the Middle East and Asia.

According to the Sunday Mail newspaper report, Grace Mugabe also demanded that officials grant her a permit to export millions of dollars worth of ivory to leaders to various countries, despite Zimbabwe imposing a general ban on ivory trading.

"Once outside Zimbabwe, the 'gifts' would be pooled together with other consignments of the product and routed to black markets," it said.

Zimbabwe has also suffered from serious poaching in recent years. Around 400 elephants died of cyanide poisoning in Hwange, Zimbabwe's biggest national park, between 2013 and 2015. Cyanide is easily obtained because of its use in the mining industry, and the poisonings continue. Often a waterhole is poisoned, which indiscriminately kills everythnig that drinks there. Sometimes fruits such as watermelons are laced and then when large game such as elephants eat them they die.

A serious knock on effect is that hundreds of vultures are often killed when they feed on a carcass.

Monday 12 March 2018

Over 100 Vultures Poisoned in Mozambique

A 62-year-old poacher has been arrested in the district of Moamba in Southern Mozambique for deliberately poisoning at least 104 vultures thought to be an endangered species. Found in possession of two elephant tusks and a flask of the poison, Nelson Machel confessed to poisoning the vultures, but denied killing the three elephants found at Mbashene.

Several species of vultures were killed. According to the National Administration of Conservation Areas (ANAC), 80 were white-backed vultures (Gyps Africanus) and 17 were hooded vultures (Necrosyrtes monachus), both of which are endangered

white-backed vulture

Friday 9 March 2018

Major seizure of Pangolin scales in Hong Kong

Hong Kong Customs on Wednesday (March 7) seized about 2,800 kilograms of suspected pangolin scales with an estimated market value of about $3.3 million from a container at the Tsing Yi Cargo Examination Compound.

Through risk assessment, customs officers inspected a 40-foot container declared to contain metal scraps arriving in Hong Kong from Nigeria. Upon inspection, Customs officers found the suspected pangolin scales in the container.

Thursday 1 March 2018

Ivory poachers arrested near the Okavango Delta in Botswana

Three Zambian nationals together with two Batswana young men were last weekend arrested by police acting on a tip-off for alleged unlawful possession of elephant tusks near Tsau village.

The suspects, 41-year-old Samson Chaima of Livingstone, 24-year-old Stephen Mukwemba of Lusaka and 37-year-old Cletus Kamwale of Livingstone and locals 23-year-old Onthusitse Mothusiemang and 18-year-old Kelebogile Tonkole both from Nokaneng village have since been remanded in custody.

The accused persons who were on Tuesday arraigned before the Maun Magistrate’s Court are alleged to have been found with 11 elephant tusks at Setata Veterinary gate.

The tusks were reportedly retrieved from a Mitsubishi vehicle they were traveling in from Gumare towards Sehitwa.

Inevitable that poaching cases in Botswana and Southern Africa will escalate as East Africa's herds are depleted. Bushmeat poaching is also on the increase.

Monday 15 January 2018

Grace Mugabe investigated for ivory and rhino horn poaching

Investigations into illicit and illegal activities led and directed by the former first lady of the country Grace Mugabe have intensified.

Investigations into Mrs Mugabe now include ivory and rhino horn poaching.

Documents are said to implicate her and some close associates, at least one of whom is Chinese, in involvment in a poaching network responsible for the cyanide poisoning of hundreds of elephants in Zimbabwe.

Tusks are also said to have disappeared from ivory stockpiles in the country.

The new government in Zimbabwe has taken a much more committed approach to conservation and vowed to arrest any persons involved in poaching ‘regardless of who they are, or who they know’.

I hope the  truth comes out, and we don't end up with a cover up

Friday 12 January 2018

Hong Kong Government advisor on protection of endangered species in possession of illegal ivory

A Hong Kong ivory trader fined this week for illegal possession of ivory resigned on Wednesday from a government advisory panel to protect endangered species, a potentially embarrassing blow for a city fighting to stamp out smuggling of ivory.

Hong Kong has the largest retail market for ivory, which it has traded for more than 150 years. The territory is a prime transit and consumption hub, with more than 90 percent of consumers from mainland China.

Earlier on Wednesday Reuters reported that government records showed Lau Sai-yuan was a member of the Endangered Species Advisory Committee of Hong Kong’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD).