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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Traffickers beware! Through the use of DNA, intelligence-based forensics devised by scientists are now being implemented to catch wildlife traffickers. This comes as the illegal trade in elephant tusks, rhino horns and lion bones has rapidly increased over the years. #elephant #illegaltrade #ivory #DNA. Photo: Becky Walter
ECF partner @frankfurt.zoological.society (FZS) reports that elephant poaching in North Luangwa, Zambia, for 2017 looks to have reduced and is closer to 2010/11 levels. However there has recently been an incursion into neighbouring Musalangu GMA where two elephants were shot with a .375 rifle. Follow up investigations and intelligence work is underway but the cartel involved appears to be new to the area with early indications suggesting it could be linked to Malawi. The FZS also reports that the seizure of ivory and trader/poachers has increased in the area in 2017 which can primarily be attributed to high levels of foot patrol coverage and effective intelligence and investigations work by the ECF-funded North Luangwa Conservation Project. #elephants #Zambia #ivory. Photo: Claire Lewis.
The Niassa National Reserve (RNN) in Mozambique has received another terrible blow to its wildlife population with the loss of 24 elephants to poachers. The elephants were killed in just one week during the Christmas period. 30 tusks and 138 rounds of ammunition for AK-47s were seized by authorities in the village of Mbamba in connection with the killings. No arrests have been made yet but the National Conservation Areas Administration (ANAC) suspect the poachers are of Tanzanian and Burundian origin with Mozambican collaborators. The ECF, in response to the crisis, is supporting the repair of RNN's radio system and additionally, contributing to helicopter costs. #elephants #illegalkillings #poaching
#Mozambique Photo: @therealjunglejane
We applaud the excellent work by the Cameroonian authorities in the south of the country early on 12th December 2017, seizing around 400kg of trafficked ivory and making arrests of the alleged traffickers. Suspects in the case appeared in court the next day for alleged trafficking of 216 elephant tusks and 81 elephant tails, and remain in custody. @officialzsl Photos: MINFOF
Positive news from our partners in Mali. Despite increasing insecurity in central Mali, the ECF-funded Mali Elephant Project (MEP) field team says no elephants were killed by poachers in 2017 thanks to the establishment of its anti-poaching unit (pictured) earlier last year. The MEP reports that ‘this is a significant breakthrough for elephant conservation in Mali’. #elephants #conservation #Mali #antipoaching #InternationalConservationFundofCanada @WILDfoundation @chengetawildlife Photo: Nigel Khun for Chengeta Wildlife
ECF partner, @conservation_lower_zambezi
recently held its annual 4-day community Chilli Workshop. The workshop - supported by French-based international wildlife organisation Awely - included talks with community members about living with elephants and their concerns about wildlife. The practical field day included guidance on how to plant a chilli nursery for profit and how to use chilli seeds to keep the elephants from raiding their fields. Also in attendance were experienced farmers who came to teach new farmers the tricks of the trade. #elephants #Zambia #community #humanwildlifeconflict Photos: Nikita Iyengar
The Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC) has made great strides in its goal to to ensure China’s ivory ban is as effective as possible once in place. One of its most recent accomplishments was to be formally registered and recognised as a trusted partner by the Chinese Government. This is especially notable as since June only about 1% of foreign NGOs in China have been successfully registered. The NRDC, which is sponsored by the Chinese State Forestry Administration (SFA) - has been working hard to set up stronger law enforcement mechanisms around the ban. Its work includes educating the Chinese public on what the ban means, making sure the exception for cultural relics is clear and tightly restricted and training forensic scientists on how to sample seized ivory. The NRDC’s China programme is funded by the EFC. #ivoryban #China #illegalkillings #elephants
THANK YOU to our friends at Endangered Species Chocolate for their incredibly generous donation to the Elephant Crisis Fund. Their generosity has made the New Year sweeter for elephants (and us!). Join them and "Indulge in a Cause"—gift yourself or your friends & family with Endangered Species Chocolate and help protect wildlife! Photo: Frank af Petersen #elephants #elephant #chocolate #conservation
A local court in Ouesso in the republic of Congo has sentenced a notorious elephant poacher and ivory trafficker, Benjamin Mbondo also known locally as Benz to five years in prison and a fine of 1,200,000 XAF ($US 2100). Over the last 12 years, Benz had gained an infamous reputation for slaughtering elephants and trafficking illegal ivory, even organising and contracting hunting teams by providing them with arms and ammunition. Benz was arrested in August following field investigations and evidence collection by the ECF-funded Nouabale-Ndoki law enforcement team, managed by the @thewcs. The sentencing is seen as an indication that the Congolese government is becoming increasingly serious about dealing with criminals that threaten the country’s natural heritage. #elephants #Congo #illegalkilling #poaching #wildlifecrime. Photo: R.J. Walter
So grateful to @tiffanyandco for their beautiful Save the Wild collection and their commitment to the #knotonmyplanet campaign. Today the collection passed $1 million in donations to the
@elephantcrisisfund in just 3 months. 100% of profits of these beautiful pieces go directly to end the ivory crisis. Search ‘tiffany save the wild’ to shop the collection and do your part to protect elephants. More to come in 2018!
Thank you @tiffanyandco This is fantastic news for elephants! Your generous support will have real impact on the ground in the fight against elephant poaching and ivory trafficking
#Repost @tiffanyandco (@get_repost)
We pledged to raise $1 million by January 2019 with our #TiffanySaveTheWild collection, donating 100% of the profits to @elephantcrisisfund to support anti-poaching, anti-trafficking and ivory demand reduction. We’re proud to have reached this goal more than a year early, and we will continue supporting the Elephant Crisis Fund as they work to end the ivory trade and save these majestic creatures. #KnotOnMyPlanet
With help from ECF funding, @thewcs, in conjunction with South Sudan National Wildlife Service are beefing up their elephant protection efforts in Nimule National Park in South Sudan. They are introducing a law enforcement training programme to help improve the monitoring and protection of elephant populations and constructing a sniffer dog kennel at the Nimule border to support anti-trafficking operations. Limited resources and few rangers in the park means elephants are currently given little protection. #antitrafficking
#nimulenationalpark Photo: South Sudan National Wildlife Service - Nimule National Park Authorities.
The struggle by authorities to arrest a group of poachers responsible for the deaths of 18 elephants in South Sudan this year, highlights some of the challenges our partners face when pursuing wildlife crime in remote and insecure parts of Africa. In early 2017, ECF partner, the @thewcs, discovered 18 elephants had been killed by well-armed cattle keepers in Rumbek North County. All the tusks were reported to have been taken to a nearby town, cut and made into bangles. Despite the evidence, no arrests have yet been made due to the remoteness of the region, the continuous movements of the cattle keepers and the fact that any attempts by the under-equipped wildlife forces to arrest the criminals is met by retaliation. The WCS is working hard to strengthen existing wildlife crime investigation in South Sudan in cooperation with the South Sudan National Wildlife Service (SSNWS) and hopes progress will soon be made in this case. #southsudan #elephants
#wildlifecrime. Photo: South Sudan National Wildlife Service - Nimule National Park Authorities.
If elephants did Yoga, this is probably what it would look like! A BIG thank you to celebrated Yoga expert, @eddiestern who generously asked his friends and family to donate to the Elephant Crisis Fund for his birthday! Your support means so much to us Eddie. On behalf of elephants across Africa, we hope you had a fantastic day! Photo: @sean_dundas #elephants #elephant #knotonmyplanet
The erection of a 50km elephant exclusion fence to protect farming areas from crop-raiding elephants in Amboseli seems to be paying off. ECF partner, @biglifeafrica, says areas protected by the fence, which was finished in April, from the Kitenden corridor to the wildlife corridor north of Kimana town, have seen an immediate reduction of elephants raiding crops saving farmers thousands of dollars and preventing elephants from being speared in retaliation. The 90% success rate has spurred Big Life to begin phase two of the project which will see the fence extended for another 58 km.
#humanwildlifeconflict #elephants #Amboseli. Photos: Jeremy Goss
ECFpartner @biglifeafrica, says a boost to its informer network has resulted in an increase in the arrests of ivory dealers. The ECF partner reports between July - September this year, Big Life rangers arrested 54 suspects in 29 poaching -related incidents including 26 suspected trophy dealers. Rangers recovered 338kg of ivory from these arrests. Big Life credits the increase in arrests to the recent growth and training of its informer network with arrests sometimes happening hundreds of kms away from Big Life’s core area. “At the same time, it’s also a stark reminder that the ivory trade is still alive and well and underlines the fact that while ivory has any value, the killing will continue,” says Big Life Kenya’s Director of Operations Richard Bonham. #elephants #biglifefoundation #ivorytrade Photo: Big Life Foundation
Sad news from one of our ECF partners in Mali.
#Repost @wildfoundation (@get_repost)
Tragedy has struck again. We lost Mr. Attaher Younoussa— one of our dedicated Mali Elephant Project Anti-Poaching Unit team members who was assassinated in his home at night. Our strength and compassion to his widow and the rest of the anti-poaching team. #rip #malielephantproject #antipoachingunit #chengetawildlife #wildfoundation #internationalconservationfundofcanada #strength #bravery #courage #gentlearmy
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
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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