The Asian elephant, once prevalent throughout India is now listed as an endangered species & included on the IUCN Red List! Out of the 40,000-50,000 Asian elephants in the wild, India is home to around 25,000 to 27,000 wild elephants. Poaching of elephants for ivory, meat, hide and other parts continues to rise! A gang in South India has killed more than 40 elephants in just 10 months this year! Your support can help WTI in building a robust enforcement team to stop this senseless crime!
The high value placed on elephant products, especially ivory; lack of enforcement & anti-poaching measures are some reasons for elephant slaughter. Increasing demand for ivory has led to a skewed sex ratio with tuskers accounting for only 4% of the Indian elephant population. Multiple layers of the ivory trade make it difficult to trace & identify poachers. Moreover, forest guards work in harsh conditions and have poor equipment as compared to poachers who have the latest technology.
This campaign by WTI aims to establish a network to gather intelligence on ivory trade from the moment an elephant is poached to the moment the ivory is placed on the market. Building on information provided through surveillance, it will use the latest technology to identify connections within the ivory trade network, from lowest level trackers to final tradesmen and buyers. It will track the routes used by smugglers to get their illicit goods to consumers within and outside India.
Through the campaign, WTI along with local partners will aim at acquiring a more comprehensive picture of elephant poaching and ivory trade in the country, including identifying key players and ivory routes. The team will also have acquired intelligence on poaching gangs, which will lead to increased arrests and seizures, and an eventual reduction in elephant poaching in India.