Elephants still at risk with Laos replacing China as ivory market

An elephant is lifted by a crane in an upside down position during a relocation exercise from Chemeron Farm in Rongai, Nakuru County to Aberdare National Park, on September, 28, 2017. The African elephant is still under threat as a new market for ivory emerges in Laos on the border of Thailand. PHOTO | AYUB MUIYURO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Poaching to satisfy demand for ivory by Asian markets has seen the worst declines in Africa’s overall elephant population in the past 10 years.
  • In 1979, when 1.2 million elephants roamed Africa, Kenya had 167,000, says the Kenya Wildlife Service. Today, the total elephant population in Kenya is estimated at 38,000.
  • The conservationists said the world needed to put pressure on the Laos Government and other countries around china, such as Burma and Vietnam, to act on the burgeoning trade, if efforts to conserve the African elephant are going to work.

It was something of a triumph when China announced earlier this year that it was going to enforce a ban on domestic ivory trade.

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