It's said that an elephant never forgets. But if we don't act, wild elephants may soon be nothing more than a memory. Every year, tens of thousands of elephants are slaughtered for their tusks. Facing ongoing demand for ivory through the illegal wildlife trade, and the threats of human encroachment and climate change, the largest land mammal on the planet has nowhere to hide.
In the last century, African elephant populations have declined by over 90% as a result of the illegal wildlife trade, habitat loss and human-wildlife conflict. Every 15 minutes one elephant is killed for its tusks. In the last 40 years, human populations have doubled, and there has been a mass expansion of agricultural and human settlements. Unsurprisingly, this growth has pushed humans and elephants into closer proximity and has escalated human-wildlife conflicts.
Elephants are one of the most vulnerable mammals on the planet. DSWF is committed to addressing the threats faced by this iconic species by fighting, protecting, and engaging on behalf of elephants. DSWF fights to protect elephant populations by funding law enforcement programmes across Africa and Asia. By funding park protection and anti-poaching efforts, our ground-based conservation partners provide protection to both elephants and their prime habitats.
Our wildlife policy team also engages in international policy forums, including the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) to lobby for a universal and permanent ban on the trade in ivory forever. DSWF strives to protect elephant populations by identifying sustainable solutions to human-wildlife conflict, funding research, and monitoring initiatives alongside the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of orphaned elephants who are the victims of wildlife crime.