A new public-service campaign in China will ask potential ivory and rhino horn buyers to see the victims of these illicit trades in a new light: as the “pandas of Africa.” The posters are a part of WildAid’s “Say No to Ivory and Rhino Horn” campaign, which was launched earlier in the year.
“These new works aim to enhance China’s current conservation efforts, shining a light on their accomplishments while asking them to broaden the impact of their kindness,” says WildAid Executive Director Peter Knights.
The new posters, which also include an additional “blood” ivory and rhino horn design, were created by well-known artist and conservationist, Asher Jay.
“By transforming consumers into conservationists, we can directly impact the future of Africa’s rhinos and elephants,” says Jay. “Cultural change is a contagious phenomenon, and comes with a tipping point—it starts with a few, gets adopted by many, and is then condemned by all. It is my daily hope that rhino and elephant.”
Elephants and rhinos in Africa are being decimated for the illegal wildlife trade driven largely by demand in China and other East Asian countries. Experts have estimated that in recent years around 30,000 elephants have been butchered every year by poachers for their tusks. Rhino mortalities are fewer, but largely because there are less rhinos to target: already this year, South Africa has lost 790 rhinos—a new record for the country.
The underground cartels that fuel the illegal wildlife trade, worth an estimated $19 billion, are also often linked human trafficking, drugs, and arms sales. Most recently, experts have noted that terrorist group Al-Shabaab is in part fundraising its activities—including the massacre in the Westgate Shopping mall in Nairobi which left over 70 dead—by killing elephants for ivory.
The poster reads: Protect the pandas of Africa – rhinos. When the buying stops the killing can too. Image courtesy of WildAid.
The poster reads: Protect the pandas of Africa – elephants. When the buying stops the killing can too. Image courtesy of WildAid.
The poster reads: Do you want to buy bloody rhino horn? When the buying stops the killing can too. Image courtesy of WildAid.
The poster reads: Do you want to own ivory dripping with blood? When the buying stops the killing can too. Image courtesy of WildAid.
(10/16/2013) For three years, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) has been running advertizing campaigns in Chinese cities to raise awareness on the true source of ivory: slaughtered elephants. A recent evaluation of the campaign by Rapid Asia found that 66 percent of those who saw the ads said they would “definitely” not buy ivory in the future.
(10/29/2013) 790 rhinos have been poached in South Africa this year, nearly a fifth higher than last year’s record toll, reports the Department of Environmental Affairs.
(10/28/2013) A military court in Indonesia’s Aceh province has jailed two soldiers for illegally possessing two stuffed Sumatran tigers (Pathera tigris sumatrae) and a stuffed sun bear (Helarctos malayanus), a rare verdict in the Sumatran province where crimes involving wildlife are seldom prosecuted.
(10/09/2013) A government minister in Tanzania has called for a “shoot-to-kill” policy against poachers in a radical measure to curb the mass slaughter of elephants. Khamis Kagasheki’s proposal for perpetrators of the illicit ivory trade to be executed ‘on the spot’ divided opinion, with some conservationists backing it as a necessary deterrent but others warning that it would lead to an escalation of violence.
(10/02/2013) With its collapsed economy, entrenched poverty, and political tremors, one would not expect that a country like Zimbabwe would have the capacity to safeguard its rhinos against determined and well-funded poachers, especially as just across the border South Africa is currently losing over two rhinos a day on average. And indeed, without the Lowveld Rhino Trust (LRT), rhinos in Zimbabwe would probably be near local extinction. But the LRT, which is centrally involved in the protection of around 90 percent of the country’s rhinos in private reserves along with conservancy members, has proven tenacious and innovative in its battle to safeguard the nation’s rhinos from the poaching epidemic.
(09/29/2013) At least 688 rhinos have been poached in South Africa this year, surpassing last year’s record of 668 with more than three months remaining in 2013, reports the country’s top environmental official.
(09/27/2013) Hillary and Chelsea Clinton on Thursday deployed their mother-daughter star power to help the effort to save African elephants, brokering an $80m effort to stop the ivory poaching which threatens the animals with extinction.
(09/24/2013) Two wildlife rangers have been killed by poachers in Thailand, reports the Wildlife Conservation Society.