Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Rescue of four baby elephants in two weeks highlights increased poaching threat in Kenya

Elephants will be raised for release into the wild

October 2012. Four orphaned baby elephants have been rescued in the last two weeks in Kenya by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT) - suggesting that poaching levels are continuing to rise.
The charity, which will protect and raise the baby elephants through an adoption programme run with the support of UK charity Care for the Wild, has now rescued 28 baby elephants in 2012 alone.
Three orphaned by poachers
Three of the elephants are reported to be victims of poaching for the illegal ivory trade, left alone after their mothers were killed by poachers. The fourth elephant Lemoyian, was rescued from a man-made well having fallen and become trapped.
Philip Mansbridge, Chief Executive of Care for the Wild, said: "This is fantastic work by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. These orphans have the ‘awww' factor, but we must also focus on the big picture - poaching is at record levels, and if the international community doesn't do something to stop it, there won't be anything left to rescue."
As poaching continues to escalate, elephant numbers have fallen from 1.3 million in 1979 to an estimated 400,000. Presently up to 36,000 elephants are being killed every year for their tusks, left unchecked, this level of poaching would see wild elephants in Africa disappear by 2025.

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