VOICES Ideas and Insight From Explorers
My organization, WildlifeDirect, recently became aware of the scale of laundering of illegal ivory in the ivory markets of Japan through its contact with the Japanese NGO Tears of the African Elephant. Please see more about the interview we did on NTV Wild via this link: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Cvsj21F_FI4 (or watch the video embedded on top of this post). We…
World elephant Day celebration in Samburu Reserve with 91 children from Kenya’s poor neighbourhoods, slums and rural areas was probably the most moving experience of my life. The children experienced a real safari, in a four-wheel-drive vehicle. They camped for the first time in their lives, and they met wild wild animals in the wilderness of Samburu. But it was also a first for my team of staff, interns and volunteers who put on an ambitious three-day program – something we have never done before. In our first meeting the group of 20 enthusiasts created a trip of discovery, play and learning for the children. My rule was that it must be the same for all the staff too.
Things have improved since the dark days of 2011 and 2012 when ivory poaching across Africa appeared to be spiralling out of control and conservations began to contemplate the unthinkable: the extinction of the African elephant. On World Elephant Day 2016 there are grounds for cautious optimism. Nevertheless, it is too soon to assert that Africa’s elephants are safe.