Dec 132017
 
POLL: Should there be an EU-wide domestic ivory ban?

The EU has traditionally been a global leader in tackling the problem of wildlife trafficking and in encouraging other countries to take action. Last year it published a far-reaching Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking, which set out a comprehensive list of actions to address the problem. So why is it dragging its heels when it […]

Oct 162017
 
POLL: Should hippos have a higher level of protection under CITES?

It seems almost incomprehensible that the desire for an ivory ornament or piece of jewellery justifies the slaughter of a majestic elephant, but as their populations continue to crash, the ever-hungry black market has become creative in order to satisfy its greed. Now, ivory hunters are setting their sights on everything from arctic narwhals to […]

Oct 012017
 
POLL: Should there be a total ban on trade in rhino horn?

September 22 was World Rhino Day. Rhinos were once widespread across Asia and Africa and even in Europe, where they are depicted on cave paintings. Today their situation is precarious. The world population of the northern white rhino now consists of three individuals. Sudan, the last surviving male, is now beyond breeding age. He and […]

Aug 202017
 
POLL: Should Japan be sanctioned for allowing the ivory trade to continue?

Thousands of jewelry, seals, scrolls and other items made of elephant ivory continue to be sold online in Japan each week, concludes a new report by TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network. In just four weeks in May and June, 2017, nearly 10,000 ivory items were sold on Yahoo Auction, one of Japan’s largest e-commerce […]

Aug 162017
 
POLL: Should the export of "legal ivory" be made illegal?

The United Kingdom ships more legal ivory beyond its borders than any other country, according to an analysis released today by the London-based NGO Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). The announcement comes two days before World Elephant Day on Saturday. Globally, elephant numbers are falling, down 30 percent between 2007 and 2014 — a decline driven […]

Aug 092017
 
POLL: Does destroying ivory save elephants?

The owners of an antiques shop in Manhattan, New York, pleaded guilty on July 26 for trying to sell $4.5 million worth of illegal elephant ivory from a back room. On Thursday, some of that confiscated Manhattan ivory and more will be crushed in Central Park as part of a public event organized by the […]

Jun 042017
 
Why has Theresa May ditched a pledge to ban ivory trading?

Strange news: Theresa May has decided to drop a Tory pledge to push for a total ban on ivory trading (only the sale of ivory items produced after 1947 is prohibited). Why would she do that? Doesn’t she need votes? I thought nearly everyone loved elephants – who votes for helping to wipe them out? […]

Feb 252017
 
POLL: Should the resale of antique ivory be banned?

The cover of the Lorsch Gospels is one of the most unexpected beauties in any of our museums. This yellowish-white carving comes from the depths of the dark ages, when Europe was supposedly a primitive and barbaric place – yet it is a delicate and subtle artistic masterpiece. It was made in Aachen, Germany, in […]

Jan 112017
 
POLL: Should the slaughter of Borneo's pygmy elephants be stopped?

Even the planet’s smallest elephants, tucked away on the island of Borneo, are no longer immune to the global poaching crisis for ivory. On New Year’s Eve, wildlife officials in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo, found the bones of a beloved male elephant, nicknamed Sabre for his unusual tusks that slanted downwards like the extinct sabre-toothed tiger’s […]

Jun 262016
 
POLL: Should Zimbabwe and Namibia be allowed to sell their ivory stockpiles?

A huge legal sale of ivory intended to cut elephant poaching instead catastrophically backfired by dramatically increasing elephant deaths, according to new research. The revelation comes just months before a decision on whether to permit another legal sale and against a backdrop of more African elephants being killed for ivory than are being born. In […]

May 022016
 
POLL: Should all ivory stockpiles be destroyed?

We are often told that wildlife conservation should make economic sense, and so it should. In my previous article I outlined some of the economic arguments in favour of burning ivory stockpiles. Wildlife conservation should make moral sense as well. Winning the moral argument is probably even important than good economics for saving elephants and […]

Jan 222016
 
POLL: Should the ivory trade in South Africa be legalized?

This week, representatives from countries around the world are gathered in Geneva to discuss the wildlife trade. The agenda ranges from rhinos to totoabas, but one of the hottest topics is ivory: Some 30,000 elephants are slaughtered for their tusks each year. One thing that came up at the 66th meeting of the Standing Committee […]