What we feared happened.
News spread from the WWF last Monday that 17 heavily-armed poachers, calling themselves members of the new coup-installed Seleka ruling elite, entered a protected elephant preserve, called the “Valley of Elephants.” Badly-armed and fearful (for good reason) game rangers knew what was coming: they heard rifle shots in the direction of where from 50 to 200 elephants congregate every day to drink nutrients from the sands. But there seemed to be a news blackout for the following silent days.
The grim, infuriating news finally came from the WWF: At least 26 elephants were massacred, on top of the slaughter that already has occurred this year, to meet the fucking ridiculous Asian demand for ivory.
At least 26 elephant carcasses, including four calves, were counted in and around the Dzanga Bai on May 9, WWF officials said. All had had their tusks removed, Jules Caron, head of communications for the WWF’s anti-poaching program in Central Africa, confirmed to LiveScience.WWF
Populations of forest elephants have plummeted by 62 percent over the past 10 years, according to the World Wildlife Fund.
Wildlife representatives described the Dzanga Bai scene as an “elephant mortuary,” and it was evident that local villagers had started taking meat from the remains of the dead animals, they added. [Elephant Images: The Biggest Beasts on Land
I’m at my wit’s end. What can we do when the poachers become the government?
I am helpless and hopeless in the wake of such atrocities. The way NGOs have been dealing with this disturbing increase in poaching no longer works in the face of such barbarism. These methods are as anachronistic as the mystical Asian demand for ivory.
It’s time for an “eye for an eye.”
There must be serious discussions about raising donations to out-arm the rangers, killing poachers on sight and inflicting real world deterrence measures
to end this madness.
Unless Asian demand is curtailed, which won’t happen anytime soon, there are no other effective solutions.
That time has passed.
Where can I donate to arm the rangers and to pay them better than the poachers do?
Where can I volunteer to help kill the poachers?
A wildlife official quoted in the top notch National Geographic article below said it best:
“At the end of the day, one of two things will end poaching,” Huijbregts added. “Either there is no more demand, or there are no more elephants. The choice is up to us.”
If it helps with any of the grief and sadness that we’re all feeling, know that at least one poacher WAS killed by his elephant target in Zimbabwe. Finally, a poacher gets what he deserves — death.
- Chaos and Confusion Following Elephant Poaching in a Central African World Heritage Site (newswatch.nationalgeographic.com)
- Poachers kill 26 elephants at central African world heritage site (guardian.co.uk)
- Elephant Tramples Poacher in Zimbabwe (livescience.com)
- Elephant tramples his would-be poacher to death in Zimbabwe (thestar.blogs.com)
- BLOODY IVORY Seventeen Poachers Armed with Kalashnikov Rifles Entered Dzanga-Ndoki National Park with ONE motivation: GREED (spiritandanimal.wordpress.com)