The 27-year old ban on international ivory trade has clearly failed to deliver a sustained solution to the poaching crisis.
Ivory was a major talking point at the CITES CoP17 conference.Many feel the ban on trade doesn't work while others believe the ban is the only way to save the iconic species.
The fate of elephants ultimately lies in the hands of humans and a continued ban will not solve the poaching problem.
The ivory trade is a very contentious issue and will be debated at CITES. It will revolve around maintaining or lifting the ban on trade. But the human element is likely to be ignored.
CITES has become the premier multilateral arrangement to tackle illegal wildlife trafficking.
The focus of CITES is not solely on the protection of species. It also promotes controlled trade that is not detrimental to the sustainability of wild species.
Dai Kurokawa / EPA
There are many similarities between wildlife poaching and the cultivation of drug plants like the coca bush or the opium poppy.
WichitS / Shutterstock
Keeping such large, intelligent and endangered animals in captivity poses a number of ethical and practical challenges.
Cheetahs have experienced severe range contractions, their numbers declining markedly in many protected areas.
60% of the world’s largest carnivores and herbivores are classified as being threatened with extinction
Elephant numbers across the continent declined by roughly 70,000 between 2006 and 2013.
Southern African nations are seeking permission to trade in ivory, in direct opposition to the wishes of their northern neighbours.
South Sudan’s elephant population plummeted from 80,000 in the late 1960s to less than 5,000 now.
South Sudan is a country where conflict is rife. This has had a knock-on effect on the country's rich and varied fauna, and put conservation programmes in severe crisis.
Sumatra’s tigers are among the species that will benefit from a new land-clearing moratorium in Leuser’s forests.
The Leuser ecosystem in northern Sumatra is home to some of the world's rarest and best-loved animals. Thanks to a new government moratorium on land clearing, conservationists have enjoyed a big win.
The reintroduction of lions and hyena has led animals in South Africa’s Addo Elephant National Park to behave differently.
Kudu and buffalo altered their activity when lions and spotted hyena were reintroduced into the areas where these species lived.
When elephants venture into human settlements, they cause significant damage to crops and property.
Elephant numbers are increasing in parts of sub-Saharan Africa. Their search for food is leading them into conflict with farmers living adjacent to game parks. Bees could prove to be the answer to the problem.
Trophy hunting could keep conservation in business.
Trophy image from www.shutterstock.com
The death of Cecil the lion ignited furious debate over trophy hunting in 2015. But conservationists argue that it's a necessary evil.
Elephants form bonds from a very young age.
Older matriarchs lead elephant society. But they're also the primary targets of ivory poachers. When these socially critical individuals are killed, what happens to the rest of the group?
Members of the famous Marsh Pride lions.
Make it Kenya
Human-wildlife conflict will continue without better management and revenue sharing.
Would a ban on mammoth ivory endanger or save the elephant?
People arguing that a ban on mammoth ivory would help save elephants from extinction are wrong. Here's why.
Elephants examine tusk of poached brethren.
Using DNA testing, researchers find that most elephant poaching is happening in two spots – crucial information to stopping the flow of ivory out of Africa.
Save The Elephants suggests that 100,000 elephants were killed for their tusks in the past three years.
If we want to save elephants we need to tackle widespread corruption that threatens their populations – and this goes for all wildlife.
Soon to be retired – after more than 150 years in service of elephants in the circus.
The decision to phase out elephants from Ringling Brothers Circus reflects a shift in public opinion regarding captive wild animals.
A ranger looks at the skull of an elephant killed by poachers - a frequent side-effect of development projects that open up remote forests to human access.
The G20 has pledged to spend more than US$60 trillion on new infrastructure in the next 15 years, much of which will affect pristine areas. Without a solid plan, the environmental toll could be huge.
Drones, along with satellites and advanced math, are changing the poaching game.
In 2014, 1,215 rhinos were killed in South Africa for their horns, which end up in Asia as supposed cures for a variety of ailments. An estimated 30,000 African elephants were slaughtered last year for…