News / Africa

Poachers Kill 28 Forest Elephants in Cameroon

Carcasses of elephants slaughtered by poachers in Boubou Ndjida National Park, Cameroon, Feb. 16, 2012.Carcasses of elephants slaughtered by poachers in Boubou Ndjida National Park, Cameroon, Feb. 16, 2012.
x
Carcasses of elephants slaughtered by poachers in Boubou Ndjida National Park, Cameroon, Feb. 16, 2012.
Carcasses of elephants slaughtered by poachers in Boubou Ndjida National Park, Cameroon, Feb. 16, 2012.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Poachers have killed 28 endangered forest elephants in the Nki and Lobeke national parks in southeast Cameroon in recent weeks, the conservation organization WWF said on Wednesday.
 
With demand for ivory rising from Asia, poachers have reduced the population of Africa's forest elephants by 62 percent over the last decade, putting the species on track for extinction, conservationists say.
 
The parks of southeast Cameroon, along with parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon, have some of the last significant populations of forest elephants.
 
"Elephants in these two protected areas in the Congo Basin are facing a threat to their existence," said Zacharie Nzooh, WWF Cameroon representative in the East Region.
 
Nzooh said that between Feb. 10 and March 1, WWF found the carcasses of 23 elephants, stripped of their tusks, deep in the Nki national park. A further five were found without their tusks in the Lobeke national park, further to the east.
 
"The poachers used automatic weapons, such as AK-47s, reflecting the violent character of elephant poaching," he said, adding that park wardens lacked good weapons.
 
Smaller than its African savannah cousin, the forest elephant has straighter tusks. If urgent measures are not taken, Cameroon's forest elephants, estimated to number about 2,000, could disappear in less than a decade, Nzooh said.
 
Ivory sells for hundreds of dollars per kilogram on the black market. Most is smuggled to Asia, especially China, to be carved into jewellery and ornaments.
 
In early 2012, heavily armed poachers on horseback from Chad and Sudan massacred some 200 savannah elephants in Cameroon's Bouba Ndjida National Park.
 
In December, Cameroon deployed military helicopters and 600 soldiers equipped with night vision gear to try to protect the park and its wildlife.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid