Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

11/27/2012 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Poachers fence illegal tusks to Asian businessmen for top dollar

African conservationists reported the highest level of elephant poaching in more than a decade. Ivory seizures, procured from countless shot and killed elephants were at their highest recorded levels since 1989, which was the year that international trade in elephant ivory was banned.
 

With the market value of ivory reaching $900 per kilogram in China, the financial stakes are high, and it appears sponsors are adopting bold new tactics to satisfy demand.

With the market value of ivory reaching $900 per kilogram in China, the financial stakes are high, and it appears sponsors are adopting bold new tactics to satisfy demand.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/27/2012 (2 years ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Illegal poaching, Ivory, elephants, organized crime, Africa


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - It's estimated that in 2011 that more than 20,000 elephants were slaughtered for an estimated 24,000 kilograms of ivory. Wildlife officials also noted a drastic increase in large-scale seizures since 2009. Organized crime can be blamed for the increase of large-scale shipments.
 
With the market value of ivory reaching $900 per kilogram in China, the financial stakes are high, and it appears sponsors are adopting bold new tactics to satisfy demand.
 
"One criminal syndicate will gather a poaching gang together, and that poaching gang will be assigned instructions to kill a specific herd of elephants or to provide a specific amount of ivory," William Clark of Interpol's Environmental Crime program says.

"We're finding that, consistently, in all of the large seizures, the DNA says these animals were brothers and sisters, uncles, aunts, parents and children - very closely related. This is not opportunistically-poached ivory where some poachers killed two elephants up in the north of the country and four more in the south and some middleman collected it all together. Oh no. One specific population is targeted and exterminated."
 
The war is on to protect the noble pachyderms of Africa. Adding to the crisis is the fact that in such poaching hotspots such as the Democratic Republic of Congo and Chad, gangs usually outnumber and outgun often under-resourced park rangers.
 
According to Clark, organized crime is hiring gangs of up to 18 people. Many sport military-type fatigues and adopt military-style techniques such as security patrols to guard their camps.
 
The poachers are becoming more sophisticated, as the wider variety of purloined ivory begins to turn up. A recent raid conducted as part of Interpol's Operation Worthy - an anti-poaching and trafficking initiative that involves judiciary, customs, police, wildlife and even revenue services from 14 African nations - nabbed more than 30 military firearms, including AK47's, G3's and even M16's.
 
"We ended up with 214 arrests, about two tons of elephant ivory, [and] a big variety of other wildlife contraband," Clark says. "But we are just starting to see them, in the past year or so, come in such increasing numbers [that] they're starting to alarm people.
 
In Kenya, at least 15 wildlife staff has been killed this year. Five rangers in Chad were executed during morning prayers in September. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, mercenary and rebel groups like the Lord's Resistance Army are turning to ivory for income.
 
In Cameroon, where gangs massacred more than 300 elephants in Bouba N'Djida National Park, Special Forces have been deployed to keep Sudanese poachers from re-entering its reserves.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for January 2015
General Intention:
That those from diverse religious traditions and all people of good will may work together for peace.
Missionary Intention: That in this year dedicated to consecrated life, religious men and women may rediscover the joy of following Christ and strive to serve the poor with zeal.



Comments


More Green

Trapped under 33 feet of ice, these miraculous creatures survive in perpetual night and freezing temperatures Watch

Image of Locked in a small pocket between 33 feet of ice and the seafloor, researchers have found a living community of fish, isolated from the surrounding ocean.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln made a miraculous discovery while drilling through a 2,430 foot thick sheet of ice in Antarctica, a fish that has been living in perpetual night underneath the ice sheet. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The ... continue reading


One third of great apes dead due to Ebola: Deadly disease making inroads on animal kingdom Watch

Image of Disease is not the only culprit. The great apes also are decimated by illegal trading in wildlife, deforestation, wars and other infectious diseases.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The much dreaded Ebola virus continues to ravage most of West Africa, -- and is taking its toll on humankind's closest biological cousins, apes and monkeys. One-third of all primates in the wild have died from the deadly virus since the 1990s. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Dealing with climate change requires 'real leadership': Romney takes Obama to task over failed green policies Watch

Image of Mitt Romney, two time presidential hopeful and likely 2016 candidate, spoke out on the issue of climate change, in a move likely intended to bolster support from moderate Republicans and independents who feel it is a major issue that needs to be seriously addressed.

By Matt Watterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Mitt Romney may not have officially announced his intention to run for president in 2016, but that doesn't mean the former Massachusetts governor and two time presidential hopeful isn't already hard on the campaign trail. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Massive oil spill in the Yellowstone River leaves many enraged and without water Watch

Image of Though it's not the first oil spill in the Yellowstone River, this incident left thousands without clean water.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An oil pipeline breach underneath the Yellowstone River on January 17 altered the lives of many people living near the spill. The residents of Glendive, Montana experienced great terror when oil began to erupt into the river and contaminate their water supply. LOS ... continue reading


Scientists warn of mass extinction event that may even affect humans! Watch

Image of Human pollution and exploitation fo the ocean is resulting in mass extinction for numerous marine animals.

By Matt Watterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new study out of the University of California, Santa Barbara is warning that the loss of individual animal species in the world's oceans is about to "rapidly intensify" because of ongoing pollution, exploitation and destruction by humanity. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


The unbelievable living fossil! Fisherman finds shocking 'monster shark' off the coast of Australia Watch

Image of According to South East Trawl Fishing Association, the frilled shark is often referred to as a

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Straight out of a horror film, a fisherman finds a monstrous sea-creature in the waters off Australia's coast. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Often referred to as a "living fossil," the sea creature is actually a type of shark. According to the South East Trawl ... continue reading


This one image may change how you think about global warming Watch

Image of Swimmers keep cool playing in an Alaskan lake amid record-breaking heatwaves in the state.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Last year, 2014, has been declared the hottest year since temperature records were started in 1880. Although the net temperature increase appears small, the local impacts are significant. Record setting years are also becoming more common, suggesting that the current ... continue reading


Innovative 'canal-top' solar energy plant in western India inaugurated Watch

Image of The 10 MW plant on the outskirts of Vadodara city, which began generating power in November, is built across 3.6 km of irrigation canal, and has 33,800 solar panels mounted on steel scaffolding.

By Manipadma Jena, Thomson Reuters Foundation

As India moves to ramp up investment in solar power, it is exploring innovative places to install solar plants, including across the top of canals. VADODARA, India (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Last weekend, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon inaugurated a new ... continue reading


Should we be worried? NASA discovers massive asteroid headed our way! Watch

Image of A large asteroid, about a third of a mile in width, will pass close to earth, viewable with most telescopes, and powerful binoculars.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An asteroid is expected to pass by incredibly close to Earth on January 26, affording amateur astronomers a once-in-a-decade chance to see a rock about a third of a mile wide. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - 2004 BL86 will pass by Earth about 745,000 miles ... continue reading


2014 was the hottest year on record since records began in 1880 Watch

Image of The hot year, meteorologists say is largely due to record high global sea surface temperatures, which were 1.03 Fahrenheit above the 20th century average.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's a sobering fact in an increasingly warmer world: the year 2014 has been declared by officials as the hottest year on record, since records began being kept in 1880. Global temperatures were 0.69C (1.24F) above 20th century averages, the U.S. National ... continue reading


All Green News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Hebrews 9:15, 24-28
15 This makes him the mediator of a new covenant, so ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Psalm] Sing a new song to Yahweh, for he has ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 3:22-30
22 The scribes who had come down from Jerusalem were ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for January 26th, 2015 Image

St. Timothy
January 26: Born at Lystra, Lycaenia, Timothy was the son of a Greek father ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter