Despite efforts by international partners to stop poaching and killing of elephants and other endangered animals in Africa organized criminals are still taking advantage of the poor security measures.
The Associated Press report states a wildlife protection group on Thursday disclosed that Cambodia made one of its biggest seizures ever of smuggled animal parts, including more than a ton of ivory.
…The current elephant poaching crisis costs African countries around USD $25 million annually in lost tourism revenue, according to a new study published in the journal Nature Communications. Comparing this lost revenue with the cost of halting declines in elephant populations due to poaching, the study determines that investment in elephant conservation is economically favorable across the majority of African elephants’ range.
The research, undertaken by scientists from World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the University of Vermont, and the University of Cambridge, represents the first continent-wide assessment of the economic losses that the current elephant poaching surge is inflicting on nature-based tourism economies in Africa…[ Elephant Poaching Costs African Economies US $25 Million Per Year in Lost Tourism Revenue – Study].
The Wildlife Alliance said 1.3 metric tons of ivory, 10 cheetah skulls and 82 kilograms (180 pounds) of cheetah bones, and 137 kilograms (301 pounds) of pangolin scales were found Dec. 16 concealed in three containers shipped from Mozambique.
The group said in a statement that another shipment of illicit ivory by the same company was intercepted in Vietnam in October.
Wildlife Alliance said Cambodia has made 19 seizures of ivory and rhino horn from six African countries since 2014.
A major international conference on wildlife trafficking was held last month in Vietnam, one of the major transit points and consumers of trafficked ivory and rhino horns.
The pangolin is considered the world’s most heavily trafficked mammal, sought for its meat, eaten as a delicacy, and for its scales, which are used in traditional medicine.