Stop the Elephant Bloodbath in Botswana
Since July, approximately 87 elephants have been found dead with their faces hacked apart and their tusks removed by poachers for ivory in Botswana. This is a country where elephants have known protection and safety for years because of strict conservation enforcement. Urge Botswana’s new president to uphold the country’s protection of elephants before this once safe haven becomes a killing field for elephants!
The elephant carcasses were discovered in an aerial survey conducted by the NGO, Elephants Without Borders, in partnership with Botswana’s Department of Wildlife and National Parks.
Botswana is home to the largest elephant population in Africa with more than 130,000 elephants. It has long been considered a safe haven for elephants because of militarized protection in conservation areas, and a “shoot to kill” policy against poachers.
Despite the heated controversy of “shoot to kill” in Botswana, it has proven to be a successful deterrent to poachers and wildlife traffickers. But, earlier this year, with new President Mokgweetsi Masisi in power, the new government has withdrawn military weapons and equipment from the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, and essentially disarmed wildlife poaching units.
There is currently a public outcry that this decision has fuelled the killings. However, it is too simplistic to say that this action by the government is the direct and sole cause of the slaughter. There are apparently still many armed rangers doing their jobs. At this juncture, while the immediate cause for the poaching is still unconfirmed, there is worldwide concern that Botswana, with its abundant elephant population, is the new target and the next killing fields for ivory poaching.
What You Can Do
Urge the President of Botswana to keep anti poaching policies in place, and ensure that Botswana doesn’t become a killing field for elephants by filling out the fields on this page and sending our letter.