One of our last Big Tuskers – spent an amazing afternoon with this gentle giant. I appreciate him sharing his space, he doesn’t have much to trust in some humans.
“Big tusker” refers to an elephant with at least one tusk weighing 100 pounds but it effectively signifies an elephant who has survived for more than 50 years and whose knowledge and experience is irreplaceable to his herd.
One study states African elephant population dropped by 50%, from 1.3 million to 600,000, between 1979 and 1989 because of poaching. About 8 elephants an hour (70,000/year) were poached during this period, until the CITES Ivory ban in 1989.
Another study published with 60 scientists in the journal PLOS One, who ran the largest study ever conducted in the central African forest, where elephants are being poached out of existence, has their own findings. Their study revealed 62% of forest elephants vanished from central Africa between 2002 and 2011. Asian elephants don’t fair any better. It is estimated that the population has fallen by at least 50% over the last 60-75 years.
save these beautiful animals!