8 January 2013

Kenya: Poachers Kill Eleven Elephants in Kenyan National Park

Poachers slaughtered a family of 11 elephants and chopped off their tusks in the Bisadi area of Tsavo East National Park on Saturday (January 5th), The Kenyan Wildlife Service (KWS) announced.

Hong Kong seized more than a tonne of ivory worth about $1.4 million on January 3rd in a shipment from Kenya, the city's third big seizure in less than three months.

All the elephant carcasses had bullet wounds, including a two-month-old baby, KWS said.

"Our initial investigations show that the poachers numbered at least 10 and were armed with an assortment of guns," Patrick Omondi, head of the KWS elephant programme, told AFP on Tuesday, adding that rangers are pursuing the poachers.

"We have not lost as many elephants in a single incident since the early 1980s," Omondi said. "This is a clear signal that things are getting worse."

In 2012, Kenya lost approximately 360 elephants to poaching, up from 289 the previous year, KWS said. At least 40 poachers were killed last year in clashes with park rangers.

Trade in ivory has been mostly banned since 1989 under international agreement, but much of Africa's ivory still makes its way to Asian markets. Last week, officials in Hong Kong seized more than a tonne of ivory worth about 120 billion shillings ($1.4 million) in a shipment from Kenya, AFP reported.

Copyright © 2013 Sabahi. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.