I C O N I C
And In Danger
Elephants are one of Africa’s most iconic species. These pachyderms live in groups; the oldest female—the matriarch—leads the family unit.
With the biggest brains in the animal kingdom, elephants exhibit a variety of behaviors. They are capable of grief, learning, play, altruism, cooperation, self-awareness, use of tools and language.
Elephant mothers have very long pregnancies. They carry their calves for 22 months, and cows usually only bear one calf every two to four years. A calf will take the first 17 years of its life to learn critical social and survival skills.
In 1970, 1.3 million elephants roamed Africa. Today there are fewer than 500,000, with an estimated 35,000 being killed every year. That's roughly 100 elephant deaths each day.
The elephant’s tusks have made it a target for poachers. Fueled by a growing demand for ivory products in places like China, Thailand and the U.S., trafficking elephant tusks has flourished as a black market industry.
How do we stop the slaughter and ensure a future for Africa’s elephants? Here are some key hurdles we must overcome: http://bit.ly/why-poachers-thrive
Sharon Loudon Photography / sharonloudon.com Billy Dodson / savannaimages.com Barbara von Hoffman / vonhoffmanphotograph.com Annie Katz /anniekatzphotography.com Martin Harvey / wildimagesonline.com Drone piloted and video shot by Ben Kreimer in collabraipn with Africa SkyCAM and CCTV Africa
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