Elephants are still subject to a significant decline in population and their loss is still posing a serious problem to conservation in Africa. The gravest problems that face the elephant populations are the continued acts of poaching and the loss of habitat.
The most recent Great Elephant Census (released on 31/08/2016) reported that savanna elephant populations have declined by 30 percent between 2007 and 2014. The overall current rate of decline for all elephants in Africa is 8 percent, the majority of which has been attributed to poaching. Furthermore, elephant carcasses are being discovered inside protected areas, showing that there are few if any places where they can be truly safe.
Elephants are now being slaughtered on an industrial scale in Africa, with up to 35,000 elephants currently being poached annually across the continent. Between 1,500 and 2,000 of these were killed in Mozambique’s wildlife parks.
A further problem that contributes to the decline in elephants is the conflict between them and humans. Factors such as climate change, construction and the setting up of estates brings about erosion of the elephants’ habitats. This is turn depletes the elephants’ food sources and area to roam in resulting in a further decline in population and conflict with humans and communities.
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