Close-Up Aerial Photos of Africa’s Last Elephants

Zakouma National Park in southern Chad is famous for its large, free roaming herds of elephants. This has made it a honeypot for poachers. From 2005 to 2010, demand for ivory has reduced the park’s elephant population from over 4,000 to about 450 individuals.

In a visit earlier this year, Kate Brooks took these beautiful aerial pictures of the park and its remaining elephants. Brooks is a war photographer who has spent most of her 17-year career documenting conflict in the Muslim world. She says it’s no stretch to compare the slaughter of African animals to the worst human conflicts. Her forthcoming documentary, The Last Animals, will describe the increasingly sophisticated war between conservationists and poachers over elephants, and many other African animals.

Brooks first became concerned for Africa’s wildlife in 2010 when she visited Maasai Mara, a wild animal park in Kenya. Having just finished a taxing embedded assignment in Afghanistan, “I was hoping that with those majestic creatures I could heal some,” she told WIRED. Instead, she was struck with how desperate the situation was for the animals there. In 2012, she was awarded a Knight-Wallace journalism fellowship at the University of Michigan, where she began researching her feature-length documentary project. “My research question was, ‘Can there be ecological preservation in an overpopulated world?’” she said.

Nobody knows exactly how many elephants currently live in Africa, but that the number could soon be zero. According to a recent report, roughly 100,000 elephants have been poached for their ivory since 2011. Experts estimate that about 100 elephants are killed every day, a rate that outpaces their ability to reproduce(elephants take about 22 months to give birth).

As demand for ivory has increased, the battle for the elephants’ lives has become increasingly militarized. Although many poachers still use primitive methods, such as poisoned arrows, more and more are former military or park rangers using sophisticated tactics and technology. (In 2012, members of the Ugandan militarymassacred a herd of elephants from a helicopter.) To defend their animals, rangers at many parks are now outfitted with assault rifles, grenade launchers, and machine guns to fend off the poachers. Some have even begun using drones to protect their animals.

Brooks’ photos of war and conflict have appeared in many publications, from TIMEto The New Yorker. She also authored a book of her experiences, called In The Light Of Darkness, which chronicles 10 years she spent in the Arab world and the effects of American foreign policy.

Although she’s done previous work as a cinematographer, The Last Animals is her first time directing a documentary. The project is partially funded through Kickstarter (it met its $50,000 Kickstarter goal in January), and is in the middle stages of production. Brooks says she hopes to be done filming by late spring of 2015.

Source: http://www.wired.com/2014/09/kate-brooks-last-elephants/#slide-id-1564865

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Experts: Poaching Could Drive Rhinos, Elephants to Extinction

Brazen poaching could lead Kenya to a "national disaster," experts warn, pointing out that the country’s elephant and rhino populations are on the verge of annihilation

MOSCOW, September 5 (RIA Novosti), Ekaterina Blinova – Brazen poaching could lead Kenya to a “national disaster,” experts warn, pointing out that the country’s elephant and rhino populations are on the verge of annihilation.

“Poaching is a national disaster. KWS [Kenya Wildlife Service] is being economical with the truth when it argues that poaching is not an immediate danger. Those charged with preserving game must come out of their lethargy and realize that if it takes limiting access to our national parks to preserve endangered species for posterity, losing revenue from tourism for a while will be a small price to pay for a long-term gain,” The Standard, a Kenyan newspaper, reports.

According to Agence France-Presse, Kenya’s government has been facing heavy criticism from conservation groups because of the “rampant slaughter of elephant and rhino.” Meanwhile, local Kenyan media outlets accuse the state-run KWS of hypocrisy, claiming that it has links to organized crime bosses which have bribed the wildlife service to allow their poachers to kill elephants and rhinos.

However, Environment Cabinet Secretary Judy Wakhungu and her Principal Secretary Richard Lesiyampe have dismissed the claims of conservation groups. According to the officials, the birth rate of rhinos and elephants is rather high and poaching does not affect the situation.
“Drawing from the data on population growth and incidence of poaching, it is reasonable to conclude that both elephant and rhino populations are not retarded by poaching,” the officials said, as cited by the Standard.

It’s worth mentioning that there is a huge demand for ivory elephant tusks and rhino horns on the Asian black markets, as they are used for the production of traditional medicine, jewelry and decorative objects.

“The rise in poaching, with rhinos being killed even inside the most heavily guarded zones, shows that poachers have little fear of tough laws designed to stem the wave of killings,” noted Richard Leakey, veteran Kenyan conservationist, as cited by Agence France-Press.

Kenya’s wildlife forms the basis of the country’s tourism economy. What is worse, experts note, “the situation in Kenya is mirrored in many nations elsewhere in Africa.”

 

Source: http://en.ria.ru/analysis/20140905/192677774/Experts-Poaching-Could-Drive-Rhinos-Elephants-to-Extinction.html

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The Elephant Whisperer: Meet the Nairobi man single-handedly protecting 21 orphans from poachers

Open wide: Every morning Peter Mbulu tends to his elephants ensuring they are nourished and well fedPeter Mbulu is on a mission to save Kenya’s orphaned baby elephants. In a country where poaching runs rampant, this man’s quest is particularly admirable.

Each morning, Mbulu wakes before the sun to awaken his 21 baby elephants to take them to the park. Last year, in Kenya alone, 13.5 tonnes of ivory were recovered.The industry is estimated to be worth £12 billion annually. ‘I want to help these animals because they are facing very bad problems,’ he adds. ‘Their mothers are being killed and no one is trying to help them except here in the nursery.’ ‘It’s a good job to do because you can see what you are doing and the impact that you bring to the lives of these orphans.’

Mbulu spends his entire day with the elephants, some as young as three months, nursing them back to health and even bottle-feeding the milk-dependent ones.He also stands watch for predators, like lions. The animals depend on their caretakers as fully as a human child would.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-2732068/Nairobi-man-single-handedly-attempts-save-21-orphaned-baby-elephants-poachers.html#ixzz3CCdNsg2b

Posted in Africa, elephant, Elephant news, endangered, Nairobi, news, Poaching, The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Games End

The Games End

The Games End

“ The Games End ” Hollywood goes to East Africa to make a film but struggles with Africanization, intrigue and murder to save the elephant. The film story is a “Moby Dick” theme that is played out with a great elephant, Ahmed, that captures the adventure and romance of  its great cast of characters who find them-selves in the African bush working to save the game, but running into opposition every way they turn.

The Games End also brings awareness to the poaching of elephants, and how if we don’t start saving the elephants they will no longer be with us. The Author has been to Africa himself many times and witnessed the tragedies, from which he got the inspiration needed to write the book.

The Games Endsmashwords-logo1

$3.99 at:

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Ahmed Elephant

Kenya’s largest tusk elephant, central to the plot in The Games End. Ahmed is bronzed and stands in front of the Nairobi Museum in Kenya . Former President Kenyatta issued a degree to protect him when he was alive. Ahmed plays a part in my book, The Games End.

Satao the elephant

Satao the elephant, who was just recently found dead, was almost as big as Ahmed, only 5 years younger than Ahmed (50 & 55).

 

 

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Elephant Poaching

Elephant poaching

elephant poaching Elephant poaching is a big issue that has got itself in the news lately. Author William Louis Gardner has experienced these tragedies first hand, and those experiences along with his fascination for these wonderful creatures has led him to publish his book, titled “The Games End.” He is really grateful for all of the female activists that have helped us stop the killings.

“The Games End.” Hollywood goes to East Africa to make a film but struggles with Africanization, intrigue and murder to save the elephant. The film story is a “Moby Dick” theme that is played out with a great elephant, Ahmed, that captures the adventure and romance of  its great cast of characters who find them-selves in the African bush working to save the game, but running into opposition every way they turn.

It also brings awareness to the poaching of elephants, and how if we don’t start saving the elephants they will no longer be with us. The Author has been to Africa himself many times and witnessed the tragedies, from which he got the inspiration needed to write the book.
Posted in Africa, Animals, Book about elephants, Books, elephant, elephant books, elephant poaching, elephants, endangered, Ivory, Novel, Poaching, Save the elephant | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Elephants

Elephants

ElephantsFans or lovers of Elephants will enjoy this book from author William Louis Gardner.

Hollywood goes to East Africa to make a film but struggles with Africanization, intrigue and murder to save the elephant. The film story is a “Moby Dick” theme that is played out with a great elephant, Ahmed, that captures the adventure and romance of  its great cast of characters who find them-selves in the African bush working to save the game, but running into opposition every way they turn.

It also brings awareness to the poaching of elephants, and how if we don’t start saving the elephants they will no longer be with us. The Author has been to Africa himself many times and witnessed the tragedies, from which he got the inspiration needed to write the book.

-A Review from the Midwest Book Review of “The Games End” by William Louis Gradner

“National treasure is a status that won’t protect one from greed. “The Games End” is a novel about Ahmed, a massive tusk elephant in Kenya who captivated Hollywood throughout the 50′s through 1970′s.  Although he  was ordered to be protected from hunters, the allure of this giant prize would not protect him from those who only  saw only dollar signs.  ”The Games End” is a riveting novel of adventure, highly recommended.”

Posted in Africa, Ahmed the elephant, Animals, Book about elephants, Books, elephant, elephant books, elephants, endangered, Ivory, Novel, Poaching, Save the elephant, The Games End | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Elephants react by protecting their babies during a bombing

Elephants protect their babies

 

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Elephants in Geneva

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opinion: Killing of Great Tusker in Kenya Recalls Lesson From the Past

The Games End

By John Heminway

Satao was thought to be the largest-tusked elephant surviving in Africa. While he lived, he was a talisman of a wild land; in death, another tragic example of conservation’s failure.

Satao’s life and legend recalls those of Ahmed, an emblematic elephant known to many during the 1960s and 1970s. Ahmed inhabited the forests of Marsabit National Reserve, on a mountain rising out of the scrublands of northern Kenya. His tusks were presumed to be the longest and heaviest in Africa.

Source: http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2014/06/19/opinion-killing-of-great-tusker-in-kenya-recalls-lesson-from-the-past/#comment-371811

Ahmed the Elephant

Ahmed the Elephant

Ahmed, Kenya’s largest tusk elephant, central to the plot in The Games End. Ahmed is bronzed and stands in front of the Nairobi Museum in Kenya . Former President Kenyatta issued a degree to protect him when he was alive.

Elephant books

Elephant books

Hollywood goes to East Africa to make a film but struggles with Africanization, intrigue and murder to save the elephant. The film story is a “Moby Dick” theme that is played out with a great elephant, Ahmed, that captures the adventure and romance of  its great cast of characters who find them-selves in the African bush working to save the game, but running into opposition every way they turn.

It also brings awareness to the poaching of elephants, and how if we don’t start saving the elephants they will no longer be with us.
The Author has been to Africa himself many times and witnessed the tragedies, from which he got the inspiration needed to write the book.
Posted in Africa, Ahmed the elephant, Animals, Book about elephants, Books, elephant, elephant books, Poaching, Satao, Save the elephant, The Games End, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Campaign to save the elephants

The success follows a £23,000 fundraising campaign in the name of Anne, Britain’s last circus elephant who was abused by handlers

Endangered: West African elephants

An army of anti-poaching patrols funded by Sunday Mirror readers has saved 100 elephants in its first year.

The rangers are at the frontline in the battle to stop elephants in the West African country of Burkina Faso from being slaughtered for their tusks, which are then sold to fund international terror plots.

Will Travers, of the Born Free Foundation which runs the team, said: “The Sunday Mirror support has been invaluable.

Not only have the rangers been able to access areas never before patrolled, they have arrested poachers and destroyed their camps. This is a huge step forward.”

The success follows a £23,000 fundraising campaign in the name of Anne, Britain’s last circus elephant who was abused by handlers.

In the year before Anne’s Army began patrolling, 106 elephants were killed and none of the perpetrators was caught. In the year since, just seven animals have been killed and seven people have been arrested.

The Sunday Mirror teamed up with the Born Free Foundation after Anne was rehomed to Longleat Safari Park, Wiltshire.

We donated your money to a new project in Park W, a conservation area covering parts of Burkina Faso, Benin and Niger.

At the time there were fewer than 5,000 West African elephants left in the park, and poaching was rife. The poachers would hack out tusks using chainsaws while the elephants were still alive.

Your money was used to increase the number of patrols and provide essential equipment. It has also paid for uniforms, as well as training for village volunteers to join the rangers.

It all comes at a time when experts this week warned that elephants in central Africa could be extinct in as little as 10 years if the poaching crisis isn’t averted.

Mr Travers added: “It is critical that we do even more to protect these forgotten animals. If we don’t act, we seriously risk losing these incredible animals for ever.”

Source: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/100-elephants-saved-sunday-mirror-3694508#ixzz35bM4tTT8

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