More elephant tusks were seized in 2011 than in any year since 1989, when the ivory trade was banned: more than 23 tons, resulting in the deaths of more than 2,500 elephants.The growing demand for ivory products in China is once more driving elephant poaching across Africa. For more than 15 years the Wildlife Action Group is providing protection for Thuma's remaining elephant population by deploying a small but dedicated local anti-poaching scout team.
Right now 12 scouts cover an area of 197 km, making each scout responsible for almost 20 km of rugged, mountainous Forest in the African Rift Valley in Malawi. This project will increase anti-poaching and conservation activities in Thuma Forest Reserve by providing financial as well as material support to pay for urgently needed scout and ranger salaries, allowances and field equipment, like boots, sleeping bags, backpacks and binoculars.
Funds will ensure that brave wildlife rangers, who come face to face with armed elephant poachers, will be provided with the necessary equipment and training. By expanding and building up Wildlife Action Group's capacities, an even more effective anti-poaching team in Thuma Forest Reserve will ensure the future of Malawi's declining elephant population and its habitat for future generations.