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African Elephant Stories

Green turtles in the ocean.

Working together to save World Heritage Sites

On World Heritage Day, we’re highlighting some of the incredible sites that WWF is working to save. These sites belong to all of us, and together we can protect them for wildlife and people around the world.

  • World Heritage sites, strongholds for tiger and African elephant populations, endangered by illegal harvesting of species

    April 18, 2017

    A new report by WWF reveals that World Heritage sites are especially vulnerable to illegal harvesting of species listed by CITES, including tigers and African elephants.

    Sumatran tiger
  • Tracking elephant migrations

    WWF Magazine: Summer 2017
    In the first project of its kind in Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve, WWF—along with the Kenyan Wildlife Service and Narok County Council—is now collaring elephants.
    A recently GPS collared, matriarch African elephant stands with it's herd
  • Tracking elephants in Kenya to prevent human-wildlife conflict

    January 26, 2017

    WWF is partnering with the Kenyan Wildlife Service and Narok County Council to collar matriarch elephants in the Maasai Mara reserve to track them as they move inside and outside of the reserve, in order to better understand how to mitigate human wildlife conflict and to maintain vital wildlife corridors.

    African elephants in the Masai Mara reserve, Kenya
  • A monumental win for elephants: China will ban ivory trade by 2017

    December 30, 2016

    Today, we celebrate another big win for elephant conservation with China’s game-changing decision to end domestic ivory trade by 2017. The new regulations come as part of the government’s efforts to reduce demand for elephant ivory and help end the global elephant poaching crisis.

    African elephant
  • New research shows investing in elephant conservation is smart economic policy

    November 01, 2016

    WWF’s African Elephant Program funded a research project that used techniques from economics and statistics to better understand the value of elephant conservation to local economies in Africa.

    tourists watch an elephant
  • 6 things to know about Tanzania’s largest protected area—and why we need to save it

    Selous Game Reserve, one of Africa’s oldest reserves and Tanzania’s largest protected area, holds vast potential, but it also faces a number of threats. By bringing together governments, local communities, industry and civil society groups, we can transform Selous into a success story.

    Sunset over Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania
  • A US ban on elephant ivory carves out a better future for the species

    WWF Magazine: Winter 2016
    On June 2, 2016, the US Fish & Wildlife Service announced new federal regulations implementing a nearly complete ban on commercial ivory trade in the United States.
    Elephant
  • Huge drop in African elephant population as poaching crisis continues

    September 25, 2016

    Africa’s elephant population has crashed by an estimated 111,000 in the past decade primarily due to poaching, according to the IUCN’s African Elephant Status Report.

    Elephants walking in KAZA
  • Uniting against the illegal ivory trade

    August 11, 2016

    This World Elephant Day, it’s important to celebrate the positive momentum being taken to save this iconic species. Poaching trends in Africa are down from the peak of 2011, and governments, NGOs and individuals around the globe have made significant strides in 2016 to fight the ivory trade that fuels poaching.

    Two male African elephants (Loxodonta africana) with locked trunks. Kenya.
  • Global momentum in elephant conservation

    June 20, 2016

    Elephants have been hit hard by a global poaching epidemic that’s emptying the planet of an array of wildlife. As many as 30,000 elephants are killed for their ivory each year. But people and governments are taking a stand for these remarkable animals – and making a tremendous impact.

    elephants at watering hole, Namibia
  • Rampant poaching threatens former elephant stronghold in Tanzania

    June 15, 2016

    Rampant ivory poaching has reduced the elephant population in Tanzania’s oldest and largest protected area by 90 percent in fewer than 40 years. WWF is sounding the alarm for urgent action in combating wildlife crime in the reserve.

    an elephant in Selous reserve
  • New US ivory regulations mark a victory in the fight to save elephants

    June 02, 2016

    Setting an example for the world in the fight to save elephants, the United States has finalized new regulations that will help shut down commercial elephant ivory trade within its borders and stop wildlife crime overseas.

    African elephant
  • What kind of animals live in KAZA? And four other KAZA facts

    The Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (KAZA) is home to almost half of Africa’s elephants, as well as an array of other animals such as African wild dogs, hippos, rhinos, lions, African buffalo, zebras, crocodiles, and cheetahs. Learn more about KAZA and what WWF is doing for it.

    Elephants at sunset in Namibia
  • 5 remarkable animal moms

    May 02, 2016

    The animal kingdom is flush with moms that take the time to teach their babies how to find food and protect themselves against the elements.

    Emperor penguin babies
  • What is ivory and why does it belong on elephants?

    We’ve all seen photographs of majestic elephants sporting long, off-white tusks on either side of their trunks. This ivory is both beautiful on the animals and essential to the species’ survival. But what exactly is it?

    elephant standing in field
  • Lessons in life on the African plains

    WWF Magazine: Summer 2016
    A trip to Kenya to see the animals of the plains
    Two male lions walking
  • Why we care about elephants on World Wildlife Day—and every day

    March 03, 2016

    Elephants number among the smartest and most empathetic creatures on the planet. This World Wildlife Day, we’re celebrating these magnificent animals—and emphasizing their need for our help.

    BORNEO Christy Williams WWF 113471
  • Photographing the most elusive animals of Namibia

    February 11, 2016

    Researcher Lise Hansen and photographer Will Burrard-Lucas worked together to document the great diversity of wildlife present in this part of Namibia—even the shy and rarely seen animals. 

    Will Burrard-Lucas Camera Traps Elephants
  • Photographing Africa's most elusive animals

    WWF Magazine: Spring 2016
    In a landscape largely undocumented by science, a researcher and a photographer team up to illuminate more than the night
    Male Lion in camera trap
  • Hong Kong steps up for elephants

    January 13, 2016

    In a landmark move for elephants, the government of Hong Kong is actively exploring phasing out domestic ivory trade. The government is also set to strengthen efforts to tackle the illegal ivory trade.

    elephants walking in a line
  • More than One Million Sign on to Stop Elephant Slaughter

    September 28, 2015

    An unprecedented chorus has spoken for the world’s elephants: More than one million people signed a WWF petition supporting a new proposed rule from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to prevent illegal African elephant ivory from being imported and sold in the US.

    African elephant (Loxodonta africana), herd with Kilimanjaro mountain in the background.
  • Thailand Destroys Ivory Stockpile

    August 25, 2015

    Over two tons of elephant tusks, carved ivory, and trinkets in Thailand—most of it from elephants poached a continent away in Africa—made its way into a machine that ground the ivory into chips. The solemn ceremony to destroy Thailand’s illegal ivory follows a number of important laws the country passed to crack down on the illegal ivory trade.

    prepping ivory to crush
  • President Obama Announces Important Advance in Fight to Stop Wildlife Crime

    July 25, 2015

    New draft ivory regulations will significantly curtail the sale of commercial ivory in the United States and help stop wildlife crime worldwide. President Obama announced the long-awaited regulations—along with the formation of an ambitious new United States Wildlife Trafficking Alliance —on his first official trip to Kenya.

    African elephants
  • Ivory Crush in New York City

    June 19, 2015

    An enormous machine roared to life pulverizing more than one ton of illegal elephant ivory tusks, trinkets and souvenirs in the heart of New York City today. The ivory crush in Times Square sent a dramatic message to the world that the United States will not tolerate ivory trafficking. 

    african elephant