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A plea for the elephants


Author: Kevin Parkinson


Over a period of eighty years, between 1979 and 1987, Hong Kong’s mafia-style syndicates, owners of ivory carving factories with no feeling whatsoever for the plight of Africa’s elephants, imported about 4 000 tonnes of ivory from various African countries. This sort of tonnage represented the slaughter of more than 400 000 of African’s elephants. Let us bear in mind that at the time of writing, 2015, that figures sums up to what is now considered left of Africa’s elephants – in all probability even less.

The carnage continues to this every day, with between 25 000 and 30 000 elephants being slaughtered annually by poachers, the killing of elephants outpacing the birth rate. Wealthy king pins connected to Chinese triads control these syndicates that have connections with corrupt government, game development  and custom officials.

Considering that during the 1970’s Africa’s elephant population was approximately 1 500 000, it is obvious that poachers have won the ivory “war”.

Ivory carving factories continue to operate in China and Japan, turning out necklaces, bracelets, rings, chopsticks and other carvings, to be sold in licensed shops. Bull elephants are most sought after by poachers, with the result that breeding bull are becoming fewer and fewer.

During the female’s elephant life – if she lives out her natural lifespan – she may give birth to approximately six calves. They are not prolific breeders: there is usually a gap of six to seven years between each calf.

The world’s largest land mammal, the intelligent and gentle elephant, is in serious trouble. This book tells of the plight of Africa’s elephants and some of the author’s experiences. It is a plea for the elephants.

A Plea for the elephants documentary will be available soon:


*The profit generated from this book will be donated to elephant conservation.


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