🖤 My heart. 🎥🐘Cambodia 2014.
Did you know the worlds population of elephants is nearing a critical point?
In 1800 there may have been 26 million elephants in Africa alone, although it’s hard to be precise. But today, after years of poaching and habitat destruction, those numbers are a tiny fraction of what they once were.
In Asia, it is estimated that less than 50,000 elephants remain; more than half of them in India. Tiny populations, a few hundreds or thousands, cling on in countries across south-east Asia and the Himalayas.
In Africa, the larger of the two species is a step further from extinction. Less than half a million roam the continent, mostly in the southern states. In the west and the forested centre, elephants are in a particularly perilous condition.
It truthfully breaks my heart when I see these numbers. It is an absolute SHAME we let our earth and it's animal kingdom get to this point. 😩
But here's how you can help:
1. Help protect their habitat -
Efforts to protect Asian elephants focus immense pressure on land and habitat. Unlike their African cousins, only Asian bull elephants have tusks. Elephant protection relies on the defence of reserve land from legal and illegal encroachment, logging, roads and other developments. Innovative solutions can help, such as a project in the tea fields of India which uses an SMS warning system so that humans can coexist safely with elephants.
2. Reduce Demand! -
In the markets of Asia where the majority of the poached African ivory ends up, the holy grail of elephant conservation remains the abolition of demand for ivory. This has worked in Japan – what was one of the biggest markets for ivory at the turn of this century is now a minor player.
3. Support the frontline defenders!!
Inspirational work is being done by exceptionally brave people. In Kenya, former poachers are recruited to be the world’s first line of defence against the murder of elephants – the park rangers. All too frequently they lose their lives. These people, the NGO community and the efforts of many governments are sources of hope. The defeat of greed and desperation may be hard to imagine. But try imagining a world without elephants?!