Conservation in the news: 23-29 October 2017

Conservation Watch’s round-up of the week’s news on national parks, protected areas and conservation in the Global South.

For regular updates, follow @conserwatch on Twitter.

23 October 2017

New danger: Invading poachers kill with mega-fires
By Bill Laurence, ALERT, 23 October 2017
In Africa, wildlife poachers invading into remote areas are using a deadly new weapon to kill animals: giant fires.
Hunters have traditionally used small fires to flush out game animals. But modern poachers—armed with automatic rifles and lethal wire snares—are using much bigger fires to kill or flush out wildlife.
Unfortunately, beyond devastating native ecosystems, the mega-fires are destroying the villages, farming plots, and livestock of traditional local peoples. Local rage against the invaders has peaked as several village residents were killed by the intense, unexpected fires.

From ISIS to elephants: the tale of a unique anti-poaching force
By Story Hinckley, Christian Science Monitor, 23 October 2017
Lt. Col. Faye Cuevas says the two decades she spent fighting terror networks was the perfect preparation for her current job: saving elephants in Kenya.
Intelligence missions, including the 2006 kidnapping of Christian Science Monitor reporter Jill Carroll, taught the US Air Force officer that classified intelligence is “only one piece of the puzzle.” She and other intelligence support officers learned to look for nontraditional clues when assessing the security of an area. It was in Africa, while working on a mission targeting the Lord’s Resistance Army, that she first started relying on the intuition of elephants.

Wildlife conservation, sustainable development in spotlight at UN-backed conference
UN News Centre, 23 October 2017
Unless the international community integrates wildlife conservation with sustainable development, it will not be able to protect the remaining animal species on Earth, the head of a United Nations-backed environmental treaty today said at the opening of a wildlife conference in the Philippines.
“Development without a regard for the environment is not sustainable. Their future is our future,” said the Executive Secretary of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), Brandee Chambers, in a press conference on the opening day of the Twelfth Meeting of countries that have joined CMS. He spoke alongside Ibrahim Thiaw, Deputy Executive Director, UN Environment and UN Environment Goodwill Ambassadors, Nadya Hutagalung and Yann Arthus-Bertrand, among others.

[India] Supreme court order may save Bannerghatta National Park
By Nitindra Bandyopadhyay, Bangalore Mirror, 23 October 2017
Apex court questions move to bring down ecologically sensitive zone from 10 km to 100 m.
The lack of political will and growing human greed has accentuated the damage being caused to the ecologically sensitive zones (ESZ) around Bannerghatta National Park (BNP) located around 25 km from the city. Illegal sand mining and stone quarrying is thriving in the area due to constant land use change within buffer zones around the national park.

[Indonesia] Sumatran tigers on path to recovery in ‘in danger’ UNESCO World Heritage site
WCS press release, 23 October 2017
A new scientific publication from WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society) and the Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park Authority looks at the effectiveness of the park’s protection zone and finds that the density of Sumatran tigers has increased despite the continued threat of living in an ‘In Danger’ World Heritage Site.
Living only on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, the Critically Endangered Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae) is the only extant sub-species of ‘Island tigers’, which includes the now-extinct Javan and Bali tiger. This sub-species is genetically distinct from the other six sub-species of continental tigers.

Malaysia embraces Melanie’s work on the illegal wildlife trade, 23 October 2017
Research into how the law can be used to protect endangered species has led to a University of Huddersfield lecturer’s expertise being harnessed by an overseas nation that has some of the world’s most diverse and fascinating wildlife.
Melanie Flynn, who specialises in “green criminology”, was commissioned to carry out research for the UK arm of the World Wildlife Fund, leading to a report on sentencing for illegal wildlife trade in England and Wales.
This led to her being put in touch with the WWF in Malaysia, a super-diverse country that is home to species that include tigers, elephants, the Sumatran rhinoceros and the orang-utan.

Rhino, elephant poaching declines in Namibia
Reuters, 23 October 2017
Namibia recorded fewer cases of rhino and elephant poaching this year compared to recent years, the southern African nation’s minister of environment and tourism said on Monday.
Namibia has one of the largest black rhino populations in the world; but as in neighboring South Africa, it is under threat from the lucrative market in rhino horn, especially in Asia.
So far this year, 27 rhinos were poached compared to 60 last year and 95 in 2015, environment and tourism minister Pohamba Shifeta told reporters. Twenty elephants have been poached since January compared to 101 in 2016 and 49 a year before.

[South Africa] New rhino conservation approach
By Emmanuel Koro, The Herald, 23 October 2017
Against a background where it has been losing approximately 3 394 rhinos annually to poaching, with one rhino being killed every eight hours, South Africa has taken the lead in a new rhino conservation approach that no one can stop now and in the future.
The unprecedented Internet technology-powered rhino horn sales pioneered in September this year by the world’s biggest rhino breeder (who single handedly breeds more rhinos than Kenya), Mr John Hume of South Africa, will potentially help African rhino range states and breeders to sell their stockpiled rhino horns and use the money to fight rhino poaching.

Ugandan Celebrities Join Wildlife anti-poaching Campaign
Ghafla!, 23 October 2017
Some of the celebrities in Uganda have decided to do something to protect wildlife. Musicians, Irene Ntale and Maurice Kirya, plus Kansiime Anne, Uganda’s popular comedian have joined the “poaching steals from us” awareness campaign.
According to various sources, this awareness action is to educate the public about the importance of different animals in the country, that are victim to poachers.

[USA] Space for Giants and Prince William’s Wildlife conservation charity, Tusk USA partner with Nile Rodgers for Stampede of Sound event at the Brooklyn Bowl on November 2nd
Tusk USA press release, 23 October 2017
African wildlife conservation organizations Tusk USA ( and Space for Giants ( have partnered to host music phenomenon Chic featuring Nile Rodgers on November 2nd, 2017 at the Brooklyn Bowl.
Tusk USA, whose mission is to advance innovation to protect Africa’s wildlife and natural habitat, and Space for Giants whose mission is to protect African elephants and their habitats through new conservation models providing anti-poaching, economic and political solutions, are delighted to join forces on this event.

24 October 2017

Elephant poaching drops in Africa but populations continue to fall
Press Association, 24 October 2017
Elephant poaching in Africa has declined for the fifth year in a row, experts have said.
But elephant populations continue to fall due to illegal killing and other human activities, while seizures of large-scale illegal ivory shipments were at record highs in 2016, a new report reveals.
In east Africa, where elephant populations have nearly halved in a decade, illegal killing has dropped back to pre-2008 levels.

Living with wildlife conference – making Africa sustainable through conservation
Namibia Economist, 24 October 2017
The human dimension of wildlife conservation is on the blackboard at a major international conference set for Windhoek early January next year. The conference will bring together in one venue a diverse group of scientists, conservationists, development specialists and other experts whose work incorporate the existential factors of environmental protection. The theme is “Living with Wildlife.”
This week the Cheetah Conservation Fund announced it is the local host for the 2018 Pathways Africa Conference, in collaboration with the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources Department at Colorado State University’s Warner College of Natural Resources. Other confirmed partners at this stage are the Large Carnivore Management Association of Namibia and the Namibia Nature Foundation.

50 Years On, Chimps Studied By Jane Goodall Still Reveal Discoveries
By Michael Greshko, National Geographic, 24 October 2017
The wild chimpanzees at Tanzania’s Gombe Stream National Park are at the heart of Jane Goodall’s groundbreaking research. Now, for the first time in decades, behavioral scientists have revisited some of Goodall’s original observations of the animals’ personalities.
The new study provides fresh insight, suggesting that, like humans, chimpanzee personalities are stable over time—a discovery that could help scientists test ideas for how our own temperament evolved.

[Nepal] Saving the ghosts of the mountains
By Sheren Shrestha, Kathmandu Post, 24 October 2017
October 23 is International Snow Leopard Day, designated for celebrating this majestic predator of the Asian high mountains. This day commemorates the adoption of ‘the Bishkek Declaration’ in 2013, that brought together the global community to secure the future of snow leopards through coordinated action under a common vision.

[UK] Dr Tiina Särkinen: Global collaboration is key to saving flora
The Scotsman, 24 October 2017
With one-in-five of the world’s plants believed to be on the brink of extinction, things do not always look so shiny for those of us working in biodiversity science. Zoologists have pandas as an iconic example of endangered species, but what about us? Like many other lesser known groups of organisms, such as insects, thousands of plant species await discovery – and many could be wiped out before they are ever scientifically described. We are losing natural resources before we know we have them. The good news is we have a plan. Our international network of gardens has the capacity to reverse fortunes – and not necessarily in the most obvious fashion.

[Zimbabwe] Notorious cross-border poaching kingpin fights Bots extradition
By Desmond Chingarande, NewsDay, 24 October 2017
Notorious Zimbabwe cross-border poaching kingpin, Dumisani Moyo, who is facing extradition to Botswana over various poaching offences in that country, yesterday pleaded with the Harare Magistrates’ Court to protect him and stop his extradition by the International Police (Interpol).
Moyo, who appeared before magistrate Josephine Sande, told the court that he feared the harsh treatment he is likely to receive at the hands of Botswana’s justice system.
“Your Worship, do not be cheated by the State, they only want me to go to Botswana to face harsh treatment for the case I did not commit. I do not know if this country’s authority can allow its citizen to face that harsh treatment by Botswana’s security authority?” Moyo said.

25 October 2017

Conservation actually works
By Wan Yee Lok, Simon Fraser University press release, 25 October 2017
Do countries that invest more on conservation actually achieve better results?
SFU biological sciences Arne Mooers is a member of an international research team that released a study today in Nature confirming that countries that spend more money on conservation had less of their biodiversity subsequently threatened with extinction. They also found countries that spent less saw more of their biodiversity inch towards oblivion.
The researchers from Canada, the U.S and the United Kingdom took seven years to compile and analyze a dataset that tracked $3 billion in annual conservation expenditures by 192 countries.

Dian Fossey, Africa’s mountain gorillas and deadly toll of poaching
By Curtis Abraham, The Ecologist, 25 October 2017
Dian Fossey dedicated her life to the study of the critically endangered mountain gorilla. CURTIS ABRAHAM looks into her life, sudden death and the lasting legacy she left in mountain gorilla preservation.
Half a century ago, the controversial American primatologist Dian Fossey established her field camp in the midst of two volcanoes in Rwanda. For almost two decades, she single-handedly pioneered the study of the rare and critically endangered mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei).

Fire Ravages Brazil’s Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park
teleSUR, 25 October 2017
Park officials suspect arson in a national wildlife park fire that has scorched over 133,000 acres of protected area.
Nearly a quarter of Brazil’s Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park is charred.
The Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation, ICMB, which manages the park, says about 100 firefighters and park personnel are battling the park fire that started last week. The fire has engulfed about 133,436 acres of the approximately 593,000-acre protected area.

Several forest elephant populations close to collapse in Central Africa, 25 October 2017
WWF in collaboration with the respective country ministries in charge of wildlife and various partners conducted the censuses between 2014 and 2016. The inventories were carried out in key protected areas (representing 20 per cent of the survey area) and surrounding zones (logging concessions, hunting areas and other land use types) in Cameroon, the Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic and Gabon. The censuses focused on forest elephants, great apes (chimpanzees and gorillas) and additional data were collected on levels of human activities.
Published in a WWF Central Africa Biomonitoring report, the results indicate an estimated 9,500 forest elephants and 59,000 great apes (weaned, independent individuals) across the survey area.

[India] Tiger conservation needs a financial stress test
By Dr. Ullas Karanth (WCS), Saving India’s Wildlife, 25 October 2017
India has done far more for tiger recovery than any other country in the species range across Asia. The persistence of conservationists, vision of leaders like Indira Gandhi and hard work of foresters during the 1970s and 1980s, should all be credited.
But the sobering fact remains that less than 3,000 wild tigers now occur in scattered small populations within the 300,000 sq. km of remaining potential habitat. If tigers recovered and occupied this entire area, at an average density of five tigers/100 sq. km, 15,000 tigers could still roam our forests. Leaving that utopian vision aside, if just a third of this area is well-protected, a goal of 5,000 wild tigers can still be set. Because protected deciduous forests and alluvial grasslands, which form two-thirds of potential habitat, can support high densities of 10–15 tigers per 100 sq. km, the above goal is reasonable.

[Indonesia] Rising Sumatran tiger numbers show impact of protection efforts
By Max Walden, Asian Correspondent, 25 October 2017
A new scientific paper has highlighted rising numbers of critically endangered tigers in a national park on Indonesia’s Sumatra island as the result of establishing an Intensive Protection Zone.
Authored by researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park Authority, the paper demonstrates numbers of Sumatran tigers in the park rose significantly over the decade to 2015, despite being on the Unesco List of World Heritage in Danger list.
“This increasing population trend in Sumatran tigers is a dream come true for all conservationists in Indonesia,” said Dr Noviar Andayani, WCS-Indonesia country director and co-author of the paper, which was published in Oryx – The International Journal of Conservation.

Indonesia seizes 101 pangolins on fishing boat
AFP, 25 October 2017
Indonesian authorities have seized more than 100 pangolins, all of them alive, an official said Wednesday, a haul of the critically endangered species that conservationists estimate to be worth about $1.5 million.
Indonesian officials discovered the pangolins on Tuesday in a raid on a fishing boat off the east coast of Sumatra island, the navy said in a press statement.
Authorities were tipped off by local residents who said men were attempting to smuggle the scaly mammals to Malaysia.

Building conservation’s brain trust in Madagascar
By Rowan Moore Gerety, Mongabay, 25 October 2017
Nothing says patience quite like tromping around wet woods in the middle of the night to collar bats and track them back to their daytime roosts. And creativity certainly played a role in a recent study tracking the bushmeat trade by scouring urban dumps for tortoise shells.
Julie Hanta Razafimanahaka was a co-author of each of those efforts. But ask her what it takes to become a field biologist in Madagascar and you’ll get a different answer altogether.
“Well,” Razafimanahaka said, “you have to be very lucky: that’s the first thing.” And it helps to be friendly too. “That doesn’t mean there’s no chance, it means you really have to talk with many people,” she added — especially researchers with foreign passports.

[Malawi] Rhino poacher sentenced to 18 years in prison
Mongabay, 25 October 2017
In July this year, poachers killed a female black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis), and hacked off her horns, in Liwonde National Park, Malawi.
A Malawian court has now convicted and sentenced one of the poachers to 18 years in prison. Two of his accomplices were also handed sentences of ten and eight years each, according to African Parks, a conservation non-profit that manages Liwonde National Park in partnership with Malawi’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW).

[South Africa] Herd of rhinos shot and killed by poachers despite majority already lacking horns
By Caroline Mortimer, Independent, 25 October 2017
An entire breeding herd of rhinos has been shot and killed by poachers despite the majority having already had their horns removed.
The five rhinos, three males and two females, were killed in two separate incidents at the Wildschutsberg Game Reserve in Eastern Cape, South Africa in the past three weeks, after they were tracked down by poachers.
The poachers are believed to have escaped with only minimal amounts of horn as four of the five animals’ horns had already been shorn off as part of an anti-poaching drive.

[South Africa] National anti-poaching task team arrests 36 in three weeks
Corridor Gazette, 25 October 2017
A total of 36 suspects, aged between 22 and 40, were arrested in Acornhoek, Calcutta, Hazyview, Elukwatini, Skukuza, Hluhluwe, Mtubatuba, Hoedspruit and Phalaborwa by the Rhino 8 Task Team over the past three weeks.
The team’s aim is to stop rhino and elephant poaching across the country, with special focus on highly targeted areas such as the Kruger National Park (KNP) and Hluhluwe Game Reserve in KwaZulu-Natal. It is made up of members from the SAPS, Customs and Excise, SANDF, Ezemvelo and SANParks Game Rangers.

[Tanzania] Serengeti faces yet another silent but deadly poaching threat
By Adam Ihucha, eTurboNews, 25 October 2017
Once subsistence poaching has become large-scale and commercial, putting the Tanzania’s flagship national park of Serengeti under renewed pressure after a lull of two years.
Wildlife in Serengeti, the World heritage site, had started to recover from a decade-long ivory poaching spree, which almost wiped out the elephant and rhino population.
The Tanzanian Wildlife Research Institute (TAWIRI) conducted the ‘Great Elephant Census’ in seven key ecosystems from May to November 2014 when it was discovered that the ‘poachers bullets’ had assassinated 60 per cent of the elephants’ population in just five years.

26 October 2017

African Elephant Poaching Down, Ivory Seizures Up
Environmental News Services, 26 October 2017
Elephant poaching in Africa continued trending downward in 2016, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, CITES, reported this week. Records show the highest level of seizures of illegally traded ivory since commercial trade was banned by CITES in 1989. But conservationists warn it is too early to celebrate.
The announcement is based on new reports from the CITES program Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants, MIKE, and the Elephant Trade Information System, ETIS, as well as on updates on the conservation status of elephants provided by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN.

Will There Be Any Elephants Left In 2030?
By Forbes Africa, 26 October 2017
Paula Kahumbu spent her childhood catching snakes and frogs in forests and swamps. Starting her career in the bush counting monkeys, she is now fighting to save the African elephant from poaching, death and extinction.
Once upon a time, Africa alone was home to 26 million elephants. The giants roamed the continent knowing not what lay in store, that their habitats would dwindle and so would their majestic numbers.
From millions, they are now in their thousands, falling faster than trees – all for their ivory tusks.

Trade bodies welcome progress in fight against modern elephant poaching
By Noelle McElhatton, Antiques Trade Gazette, 26 October 2017
A new CITES report stating that elephant poaching in Africa declined in 2016 for the fifth year in a row has been welcomed by antiques industry trade body representatives.
The report that there had been “a steady decline in poaching levels since its peak in 2011, and the analysis from 2016 concludes that overall poaching trends have now dropped to pre-2008 levels”.

[India] Forest dept accused of denying info on KNP staff
The Assam Tribune, 26 October 2017
RTI-cum-environment activist Rohit Choudhury has alleged that he has been denied information by the Forest department on the status of implementation of the April 10, 2016 order of the Gauhati High Court in PIL case no. 6/2008 on the issue of reposting of the 233 watch and ward staff of the Forest department, who were initially posted at the Kaziranga National Park (KNP) and other wildlife areas and ,subsequently, transferred to other places.He also requested for information on the enquiry report, which the High Court had asked the Upa Lokayukta to file, on the allegation of misappropriation of the funds meant for the construction of the Rajamari anti-poaching bridge.

Mozambican Community Conservation Spurred On by Puppets
By Ethan Freedman, Rainforest Trust, 26 October 2017
Rainforest Trust is working to support the conservation of over 13,000 acres of Mt. Namuli in Mozambique, a critical biodiversity hotspot. Community conservation outreach is a vital part of the larger efforts of partners LUPA and Legado to conserve Mt. Namuli.
The communities around Mt. Namuli are a vital part of the greater Namuli ecosystem. They rely on the mountain for ecosystem services like water, and the mountain relies on their support for conservation.

Namibia: Boost for Save the Rhino Trust
The Namibia, 26 October 2017
The Debmarine-Namdeb Foundation will be sponsoring three vehicles to the value of N$1,5 million to Save the Rhino Trust for use in its anti-poaching activities.
This was said by Simson Uri-khob, the chief executive officer of the Save the Rhino Trust (SRT) during the World Rhino Day celebrations, which also coincided with the 35th anniversary of the SRT recently.
“As CEO of Save the Rhino Trust, it is my honour to personally convey our gratitude for the support and cooperation we have been receiving from Debamarine Namibia and Namdeb,” said Uri-Khob.

[Namibia] Mobil Oil keeps Rhino Trust vehicles in the field to keep poachers out
Namibia Economist, 26 October 2017
For anybody who thought Mobil completely departed southern Africa when Pegasus fell off the Engen logo to comply with US sanctions legislation against South Africa, their continued presence came as a surprise.
This week, using the Erongo Expo in Walvis Bay as background setting, Exxon Mobil’s local oil distributor, Lubrication Specialists, donated a year’s supply of lubricants to the Save the Rhino Trust whose vehicles often have to endure the most gruelling travel over uncharted terrain when protecting Namibia’s valuable black rhino and elephant populations in the Erongo Region.
Garth Glen-Spyron and Jimmy Shanjengange presented the very substantial donation to the trust at the latter’s exhibition stand at the Erongo Expo.

Tanzania’s anti-poaching crusade takes new turn
By Patty Maguira, eTurboNews, 26 October 2017
Tanzania will in the near future establish an anti-poaching intelligence unit in its bid to curb the vice which has seen populations of elephants and rhinos in the country significantly reduced in recent years.
The Great Elephant Census conducted in seven key ecosystems from May to November 2014 indicated the country had lost 60 per cent of its jumbos to poachers then.
The Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute (Tawiri) census showed the elephants’ population had nosedived from 109,051 in 2009 to barely 43,521 in 2004.

27 October 2017

The World Spent $14B on Conservation and We Just Discovered How Well it Worked
By McKinley Corbley, GoodNewsNetwork, 27 October 2017
If it ever feels like the world is beyond saving, think again – this new study is one of the first of its kind to measure just how much of a difference our conservation efforts are making based on the money we have spent.
The paper, which was published in Nature earlier this week, explains how 109 countries collectively spent roughly $14.4 billion over the course of a decade on initiatives that specifically promoted conservation. These initiatives include providing support for the management of protected areas like national parks and, reserves; supporting conservation infrastructure; training conservation officers; and educating the public.
And based on the researchers’ data, the financing of these initiatives helped slow biodiversity loss in all 109 countries by a median average of 29%.

28 October 2017

Renewed Hope for the Conservation of Migratory Species
By Susan Lieberman (WCS), Huffington Post, 28 October 2017
My WCS colleagues and I are wrapping up 9 days in Manila, at the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (referred to as CMS CoP12). It has been an exciting meeting, bringing together more than 800 people from governments, intergovernmental organizations, and non-governmental organizations from across the globe to discuss the conservation of migratory species.

[India] Concerted efforts helped in reducing poaching in KNP
Assam Tribune, 28 October 2017
Concerted efforts and a comprehensive strategy made by the authority of Kaziranga National Park (KNP), support from the police personnel from neighbouring districts in coordination with VDP parties from different fringe villages of Kaziranga and local Eco Development Committees had greatly helped in reducing the poaching of rhinos to a satisfactory extent this year compared to last year when 15 rhinos had been killed by poachers. According to sources, this year two rhinos had been killed by the poachers. The second one was killed on April 22 last in the eastern range of Agaratoli.
“For last six months there had be no rhino poaching in Kaziranga National Park and it was possible due to the concerted efforts of all concerned, who played an important role in conveying the vital information to the authorities which helped us to take quick action to control poaching activities,” said Satyendra Singh, Director of Kaziranga National Park.

[India] Uttrakhand forest officials inspect burial spot of tusker, poaching suspected
By Nihi Sharma, Hindustan Times, 28 October 2017
Uttarakand forest officials on Saturday carried out an inspection of the spot from where a person arrested with two elephant tusks claimed he buried the carcass of the dead animal.
Officials arrested Mohammad Qasim, 35, on the charge of smuggling animal parts from his residence and booked under Sections 9, 39, 40, 44, 49A and 49B of the Wildlife Protection Act.
Qasim, who was arrested with the tusks from the Terai west forest division near Ramnagar early on Friday, told officials that he burned the bones of the dead elephant after extracting the tusks.

[Malaysia] Sabah to set up special anti-poaching team
By Kristy Inus, New Straits Times, 28 October 2017
The Sabah Forestry Department wants to set up a dedicated wildlife enforcement team as poachers have become daring in forests and reserve areas.
Its chief conservator of forests, Datuk Sam Mannan, said this specialised squad would be supervised and coached by the department’s existing enforcement team, whose members were deployed statewide.
The squad of 50 people was expected to undergo training in Thailand. It included the use of firearms, and they would be stationed at priority areas like the Tabin wildlife reserve, Kinabatangan and Ulu Segama.

[South Africa] Rhino education is key
By Orrin Singh, Zululand Observer, 28 October 2017
The R120 000 donation received by Thula Thula Private Game Reserve from a KZN delegation, acting on behalf of the greater Durban Chinese community, will be used to help the reserve’s anti-poaching unit in an attempt to further protect their wildlife.
‘Our expenses to protect our wildlife are phenomenal and we cannot do without our 24/7 armed security to patrol the game reserve and fight poaching,’ Francoise Malby Anthony, owner of Thula Thula, told the ZO.
During the handover on Saturday, attended by Consul General of China, Jianzhou Wang, Anthony made specific reference to education as being the key to conservation.

29 October 2017

Endangered Already, Lions, Chimpanzees and Giraffes Need Added Conservation : UN
teleSUR, 29 October 2017
The UN’s Conservation of Migratory Species, CMS, announced ramped up conservation efforts for nearly 34 endangered species
Lions, leopards, giraffes, and chimpanzees along with a variety of sharks were added on a list for extra protection at a UN wildlife conference in the Philippines on Saturday.
The UN’s Conservation of Migratory Species, CMS, announced ramping up conservation efforts for nearly 34 endangered species, including nearly 10 types of vultures.

[India] Rajasthan High Court stay a breather for desert national park residents
By Mukesh Mathrani, Hindustan Times, 29 October 2017
The Rajasthan High Court has given a reprieve to thousands of residents of the core area of the desert national park (DNP) by restoring their land rights.
Hearing a writ petition filed by a resident of the core area of the park on October 26, the court stayed the chief forest conservator’s order and restored the land right of park residents until disposal of the petition.
In 2011, following violation of DNP Act, the state chief forest conservator scrapped the land rights of park residents, depriving them from filling land mutation, land sale deed or getting agricultural electricity connection among others.

[India] Kagaznagar tiger population thrives
By S. Harpal Singh, The Hindu, 29 October 2017
Anywhere else, the incidence of 30 cattle heads being killed by tigers in a span of just five months would have raised a furore, but in Kagaznagar Forest Division in Kumram Bheem Asifabad district however, the trend is a welcome phenomenon.
“The cattle kills are more than a proof that our tiger population, comprising of a mother and four sub adult tigers, is thriving,” observed Kagaznagar Forest Divisional Officer A. Narasimha Reddy as he talked of the well being of wild animals since they were spotted two years ago. “We have now endeavoured to better the kind of protection being given to the big cats through an anti- poaching drive being carried out since October 16,” he revealed, summing up the state of affairs within his jurisdiction.

Mali’s Desert Elephants, on Edge of Annihilation, Get a Fighting Chance
By Mark Rivett-Carnac, New York Times, 29 October 2017
Mali’s elephants, Africa’s northernmost herd and adapted to life in the country’s harsh desert, were in desperate need of protection.
The animals live in an unforgiving landscape southeast of Timbuktu, enduring sandstorms and blistering temperatures. To survive, they trek in search of food and water across what is thought to be the biggest migratory range of their species, more than 12,400 square miles.
But it wasn’t only climate change endangering the elephants. It was also poachers.

[South Africa] Rhinos – some good news for a change
By Tony Carnie, Herald Live, 29 October 2017
At a time when the word ‘rhino’ has become synonymous with bloodshed‚ bullets and a poaching rate of three animals each day‚ it is not often that there is some good news.
Yet the sun does shine through the dark clouds from time to time – as happened last week‚ when a group of fourteen black rhinos from KwaZulu-Natal was shifted out of the province to help multiply one of Africa’s most endangered wildlife species.
The latest move – to a new private reserve in the north of the country – is part of a conservation project that began fourteen years ago‚ to spread out this increasingly vulnerable and iconic species from state land into private and community-owned reserves.
For security reasons‚ the location of the new black rhino reserve has not been disclosed.

[UK] We cannot gamble away our natural world
By Andrew Rosindell, Romford Recorder, 29 October 2017
On October 18 I delivered the main speech in a debate in the House of Commons titled Animals in Peril.
I decided to arrange this debate because recently I have seen many statistics that show the massive declines in animal populations worldwide.
Elephant and rhino populations in particular have suffered deeply due to poaching. For example, the decline in the black rhino population shows a collapse of 95per cent in the past 50 years.

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