Furthermore, while the killing of elephants has been "most pervasive in the populations of Central Africa," populations in East and Southern Africa starting declining around 2009. The fragile forest elephants of West and Central Africa will go, then Kenya and Tanzania as the poachers move east, then finally, lastly, poachers will target the once stable elephant populations in the south. It's a blueprint for extinction.
I wish this was a mistake. I wish I could chalk this up to an overestimation. But, I know Iain Douglas-Hamilton and Patrick Omondi, two of the researchers who conducted this study, and I trust their expertise. The bad news is, unfortunately, true.
The only silver lining is that the findings of this study validate the need for action... NOW.
It's time for more action in the U.S. There's no excuse for the fact that antique stores and auction houses continue to sell ivory. Give me a break!
It's time for more action overseas. Despite highly publicized ivory crushes in the U.S., France, the Philippines, and even Hong Kong, to name a few, England seems reluctant to destroy its ivory stockpile. Get rid of it wherever it exists. Permanently gone. Only elephants should have ivory.