The ivory trade and elephant poaching is once again making headlines. According to an article in yesterday’s NY Times (Elephants Dying in Epic Frenzy as Ivory Fuels Wars and Profits, 9/3/12) a group of Rangers at the DRC’s Garamba National Park now believe that the poachers include the Ugandan military.
The current rate of elephants being slaughtered for ivory is the worst in decades. There is a clear consensus that poachers are receiving exorbitant prices for ivory from a boom in collectors in China. This has created a supply chain fueled by the needs of the DCR’s warlords.
In the case of a recently sited Ugandan military helicopter over the park, the rangers found 22 elephant carcasses, including babies, which appear to have been shot from above. The rangers also did not find tracks where the poachers would have had to hike in if traveling by foot.
You can find out more about Garamba’s rangers in this NY Times video.