Elephant Crisis Fund

The ECF is helping to prevent the ivory poaching crisis by funding the best partners and most urgent projects around the world.


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A well-known Ethiopian ivory trafficker has turned informant after his arrest earlier in the year, and identified two poachers that he operated with at the Babile Elephant Sanctuary in Ethiopia. ECF partner, @bornfreefoundation, reports that one of the two poachers, Ahimed Kafi Abdella, has since been arrested (he was shot and wounded in the process after trying to kill law enforcement officers) and sentenced to 2 years and six months in jail. The other poacher is yet to be found. The informer was caught carrying 1.5 kilos of broken ivory pieces which were meant to be samples to show potential buyers. He was moved to another residency for his safety but not prosecuted. #ElephantCrisisFund #Babileelephantsanctuary #bornfreefoundation #ivorytrafficker. Photo by: Frank AF Petersens


An elephant is dwarfed by the tall grass in this image by our partners at African Parks, Benin. There’s been so much rain at the Pendjari Complex that even animals as big as elephants are proving difficult to spot.  While the rain might be a welcome sign, it’s proving a struggle for African Parks rangers during their elephant patrols. We are pleased however to report that the grass has started to dry and bush fire management will soon begin allowing the patrols to continue more effectively. #africanparks #Benin #Pendjari #Wildifeconservation #Elephants. Photo by: Marketa Svejcarova


The sentencing of notorious ivory trafficker, Winston Humba, to seven years jail in Malawi for crimes against wildlife is further testament to the great work being carried out by wildlife and law enforcement groups in the country including ECF-funded Lilongwe Wildlife Trust. Humba was arrested at his 'ivory factory' where heavy duty machinery was being used to process raw ivory into smaller pieces for easier air transport to addresses in Thailand and Malaysia. Four men in connection with the 'factory' received 4 year sentences each with hard labour. Before 2014, Malawi was seen as a ‘soft target’ for wildlife criminals, with low interception and conviction rates and an average sentence of just $40 for ivory trafficking. Today wildlife criminals can expect to find themselves behind bars with tough sentences. The case was made possible with support from ECF, Wildcat Foundation, Olsen Animal Trust and Stop Ivory. See full press release on LWT website. #ElephantCrisisFund #Wildlifecrime. Photo by: Malawi Police Service



ECF funded project, Eyes in the Courtroom, managed by @wildlifedirect, has made some impressive progress in its efforts to seek justice for wildlife. A major highlight is the development of a digitized and valuable wildlife crime database - iCourtroom - which ensures wildlife crime cases are properly managed within the Kenyan judicial system.  iCourtroom collects and manages wildlife crime data including court records, allowing for detailed tracking of cases, quick analysis and real-time generation of wildlife crime data. It is the only digitized system in Kenya that maintains a wildlife offenders’ database.  All 2,600 wildlife crime cases generated by WildlifeDirect through court monitoring from the year 2014 to 2017 will be fed into iCourtroom system by the end of next month. #ElephantCrisisFund #Kenya #Wildlifecrime. Photo by: Wildlife Direct


Project​ ​Update:​ The North Luangwa Conservation Project funded by ECF and implemented by @frankfurt.zoological.society collared two bulls and three cows last year in August. One
of the bulls, a single tusker known as Mwambwa Bull, was poached earlier this year and his only tusk
taken. We are pleased to report that ongoing investigations have since resulted in the arrest of the
poacher and the tusk retrieved. The poacher is linked to a Malawian dealer whose details are being
obtained. Close collaboration between the Frankfurt Zoological Society and the Lilongwe Wildlife Trust in
Malawi has meant a better response from law enforcement on the Malawi side of the border which has
contributed to an overall reduction on poaching in 2017. Photo by: Noah Chilanga #ElephantCrisisFund #Wildlifeconservation #Malawi #Zambia


21 elephant deaths have been recorded in the month of September alone this year as a result of the severe drought conditions in Tsavo as reported by ECF partner the @tsavotrust. About 70% of elephant mortality observed in Tsavo East National Park (TENP) occurred in close proximity to man made water points, where desertification of surrounding habitat is clearly visible and taking its toll. The main problem however is not lack of water, as many might think, but a lack of food. Lion prides have noticeably increased in size in recent months with plentiful fresh elephant carcasses to feed from due to the harsh drought. Photo by: Tsavo Trust. #ElephantCrisisFund #Wildlifeconservation #Kenya #drought #elephant #elephants



A man tried and convicted of poaching a black rhinoceros in Liwonde National Park in Malawi has been handed an 18-year prison sentence by the Liwonde Magistrates’ Court. The sentence sets a new precedent in the punishment for wildlife crime in the country. Two accomplices were also given long-term sentences of ten and eight years each. The arrests were made as part of a joint operation undertaken by the Malawi Police Services and the Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW). The investigations and court proceedings were supported by ECF partners @africanparksnetwork, @lilongwewildlife and @action4ifaw. In a statement, Peter Fearnhead, CEO of African Parks, says: “Rarely in wildlife crime are the perpetrators brought to justice and the speed at which the poachers were located, arrested, tried and convicted is a testament to the Malawian government in protecting their wildlife, deterring other poachers, and taking a stand against wildlife crime.” The ECF has funded several projects to help Lilongwe Wildlife Trust strengthen the enforcement of wildlife laws in Malawi and congratulates all those involved in bringing the poachers to swift justice. Full press release on the African Parks website.


@savetheelephants recently took part in a @kenyawildlifeservice KWS Forensic Training organised by ECF partner Wildlife Traxx Consultancy. The main objective of the training, held at Isiolo Complex and Big Life Conservancy, was to equip law enforcement officers, especially first responders at a scene, with the knowledge and skills on DNA analysis and its role in investigation and prosecution of wildlife crime. It is hoped the training will help enhance the quality of evidence presented in court by wildlife crime prosecutors and will also assist in securing convictions of wildlife offenders, thereby deterring others from engaging in wildlife crimes. #ElephantCrisisFund #Kenya #WildlifeCrime Photo by: Kerry Roberts


Eyes in the Sky …. Elephants in the Amboseli ecosystem are receiving improved protection from @biglifeafrica's aerial teams and rangers. Big Life has rangers stationed over 1.6 million acres in Kenya, and aerial monitoring is the most effective way to track elephants and the threats to them over such a big area. Thanks to funding from the ECF, there has been increased frequency of aerial patrols, faster response to poaching and human-wildlife conflict incidents and more effective responses to cases of injured elephants thus allowing for faster and safer treatment. BLF has been able to have a bigger impact on a bigger area! #ElephantCrisisFund #Elephants #WildlifeConservation #Kenya. Photo Credit: Jeremy Goss



Congratulations to the detection dog unit at Uganda’s Entebbe Airport which has reported a string of successes since its operations began ten months ago.  The  ECF/ @africanwildlifefoundation  funded unit was developed in response to the increasing rate of ivory trafficking through Uganda’s border posts and Entebbe International Airport. Since December 2016, the sniffer dog unit has made 94 interceptions of illegal products including the case of a Vietnamese trafficker who was caught with a staggering 12 pieces of rhino horn weighing 23 kgs. In the unit’s first seven months of operation, 32 offenders alone were tried and convicted in court. The Uganda Wildlife Authority, which manages the unit, hopes that successes like these will discourage criminals from trafficking contraband wildlife products through the airport and through Uganda.  #ElephantCrisisFund #Elephants #Uganda #WildlifeConservation. Photo credit: WCS Uganda


Guns N' Roses Guitarist - Slash advocates for the African Elephant as part of a brilliant celebrity outreach campaign by Elephant Crisis fund partner, IFAW.  #Savetheelephants #Repost @action4ifaw ・・・


#Repost @savetheelephants (@get_repost)
Only 2 days to go! Join us at the Global March For Elephants, Rhinos & Lions this Saturday, 7th October 2017. Our team will be marching both in Nairobi and Samburu so see you there. ⠀
#SavetheElephants #GMFER2017 #Justice4Wildlife  #Justice4All #Justice4Earth



We love this photograph sent to us by ECF partner Conservation Lake Tanganyika (CLT) in Zambia.  The photo was sent with the encouraging news that the ECF-funded Nsumbu Investigations and Intelligence Unit (IIU), supported by CLT, is making great strides in the Nsumbu National park. They’ve made a number of arrests and convictions for elephant poaching and seen a reported increase in the range of elephant movement. In fact CLT reported that elephants have been seen close to the boundary of the park for the first time in decades! Nsumbu park is the only place along the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Zambia where elephants are resident and often observed in the lake itself. Well done CLT and the Nsumbu IIU! Photo credit: Conservation Lake Tanganyika.  #ElephantCrisisFund #elephants #elephant #conservationlaketanganyika


#Repost @tiffanyandco ・・・
Did you know? Here at Tiffany we're committed to ending the global ivory crisis. Help us save these wonderful creatures with #KnotOnMyPlanet and visit www.knotonmyplanet.org to learn more. @zoeisabellakravitz, @officialdavidhallberg, @ellefanning, @janellemonae and @st_vincent.


#Repost @tiffanyandco ・・・
Each year, more than 30,000 elephants are killed for their ivory. Today, we say #KnotOnMyPlanet. Visit www.knotonmyplanet.org to learn more. @zoeisabellakravitz, @officialdavidhallberg, @ellefanning, @janellemonae and @st_vincent.



A special thank you to @tiffanyandco for their commitment to saving the elephants and the launch of the #TiffanySaveTheWild collection. 100% of profits will be donated to the Elephant Crisis Fund.
📷 Frank af Petersens


American actor and environmentalist @leonardodicaprio has lent his voice to a powerful short film about the ECF and the poaching crisis facing African elephants. The @elephantcrisisfund is a joint initiative of @savetheelephants and @wildnetorg in partnership with @LeonardoDiCapriofdn to end the ivory crisis. The ECF has funded the world's best efforts in the most critical hotspots to stop the killing of elephants and the trafficking and demand for ivory. Check out the new Elephant Crisis Fund website to watch the full 3 minute film (link in bio)


For #Nationaldogday we would like to recognise #Rangersnifferdogs as they play a very big role in conservation. Some of them are very tiny but have lethal senses and can smell contraband no matter how well hidden they are. This cute dog, from one of the projects we fund is so happy at work and seems to be doing a very god job



Conservationist Wayne Lotter, a powerful force taking on the Tanzanian ivory trafficking cartels, was killed last night in a shooting near Dar es Salaam.
Through a combination of dogged determination and his self-effacing nature he created a powerful partnership with the National and Transnational Serious Crime Investigations Unit (NTSCIU) that had achieved real success against the crime networks.

With the support of Wayne's organisation @pams_foundation in Tanzania https://pamsfoundation.org/ the NTSCIU arrested 1,398 poachers and ivory traffickers, 78% of whom were convicted for their crimes. This has been the first significant win against a wave of poaching that slashed Tanzania's elephant population by 60% between 2007 and 2016.

Our deepest condolences to Wayne's family and his team.


#Repost @savetheelephants (@get_repost)
On this day, #WorldElephantDay we would like to show our deep appreciation to @getcrackin and their spokes-elephant #ErnietheElephant for their generous donation of $100,000 to Save The Elephants. 100% of the funds will be used to support anti-poaching efforts in Africa managed by the @elephantcrisisfund , an initiative of Save The Elephants and the @wildnetorg, in partnership with the @leonardodicapriofdn The ECF supports projects across Africa, in ivory consuming countries which aim to stop the killing of elephants, prevent the trafficking, and put an end to the buying of ivory.
Thank you #ErnietheElephant for helping to save your family!


Ivory statues going up then down into the crusher #ivorycrush 📹@thewitt77


We are live at the #ivorycrush in Central Park NY 📹 @thewitt77


In honour of the four rangers and a porter killed by an unidentified group of armed men in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve in the DRC last week, we are reminded of how many others have lost their lives or been injured in the line of duty. Being a park ranger is arguably one of the most dangerous jobs on the planet and today, on #WorldRangerDay, we would like to pay tribute to those courageous men and women who protect our parks, our landscapes and our endangered species, particularly those who have lost their lives in the line of duty. Without your commitment and dedication, much of our natural heritage would be lost.
📷 Frank af Petersens.


The deaths of four rangers killed by Mai Mai rebels in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve in the DRC last week further highlight the dangers law enforcement officers face on the frontline every day protecting wildlife in Africa. The bodies of the rangers from the state park authority and one porter were found by Okapi Conservation Project (OCP), which are supported by ECF partner, Wildlife Conservation Global. The OCP embarked on a rescue mission after the rangers and several journalists were ambushed while on their back from a visit to the Bapela gold mining site. Three journalists were found safe. The notorious Mai Mai rebels, who have been active in the Congo since the 1997 civil war, are led by a notorious elephant poacher called Morgan. Our thoughts are with the families of the deceased.
📷 Frank af Petersens


A ton of confiscated elephant ivory including tusks, trinkets, statues and jewellery will be crushed in the middle of New York’s Central Park next month. The August 3 event has been organised by the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in partnership with ECF partner, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and ECF donor, Tiffany & Co. The public event will send "a clear message that the state will not tolerate wildlife crime that threatens to wipe out Africa’s elephants” said the DEC. The department conducted a similar ivory-crushing event in 2015 in Times Square.


ECF partner, the Zoological Society of London is stepping up its efforts to protect elephants and stop wildlife crime in the West African nation of Benin by installing a network of 80 cameras in the country’s Pendjari National Park. The cameras will help identify and characterise seasonal movements of elephants and gather vital intelligence on poachers. Test camera images (pictured) have confirmed a regular presence of elephants in Bondjagou Forest - a small patch of dense forest that is strategic to the future of the park. Photos: ©️Vincent Lapeyre, ZSL & Save The Elephants


Vietnamese authorities have seized nearly three tonnes of ivory hidden among boxes of fruit, believed to be the ‘largest ever seizure’ for the Vietnamese province of Thanh Hoa. According to a report in the South China Morning Post, 2.7 tonnes of tusks were found inside cartons on the back of a truck on its way to Hanoi. The latest haul spotlights the country’s key role in the global wildlife smuggling trade.


An ivory smuggler has returned from the dead and been re-arrested thanks to the vigilance of staff from ECF grantee Natural Resource Conservation Network. Ugandan Tadeo Kyewalyanga was arrested after a seizure of ivory in Juba, South Sudan, and released on bail. When the time came for him to face charges, the court was told that he had been killed in the renewed civil war in South Sudan, and the case was dropped. In June 2016 he magically reappeared in Uganda to guarantee bail for a suspect caught with 1.3 tons of ivory. His house was searched and incriminating documents found, so he is back in police custody, but in a different country and very much alive.


A fallen criminal! Gabon's infamous ivory trafficker Oumarou Faroukou aka King Faroukou, was last week arrested in Makokou while in the middle of a deal trying to market off two ivory tusks weighing 20kgs. Known for his bold moves against the justice system, such as the time he trafficked 100kg of ivory bearing the mark of the Makokou court after paying off the judge and clerk, Faroukou has eluded the law many times. Earlier this year he was arrested on ivory trafficking suspicion but his case was dismissed. As Gabon awaits a ruling on this recent arrest, many are hopeful that he will finally face the full wrath of the law. Check out our facebook page fo the full story