The existence of a water loving species in the middle of a great desert shocked early explorers and has that effect still. Memory, migration and magnificent skills serve the Namibian elephant well, as they probably have for other, long-dead elephant populations in the severest African climates.
And why can baby elephants be taken across the world to China when almost every other species in danger is protected by international laws? Some anomalies still exist in conservation, perhaps explainable by the human rights issues that remain in more countries than we care to count.
International Tiger Day: The remaining 3,200 tigers from 6 sub-species are lucky to be free, but also suffer severely from human interference and frequent attack. It is our job above all to ensure that the distinct tigers are able to breed and reproduce the animals that can survive in their 6 distinct niches. Without help, I'm afraid there is no future whatsoever. The Far East is responsible for huge losses of tigers (elephants, bears, sharks and rhinos, too) and "breeding programs" have to be curtailed when they are obviously simply selling tiger parts. Awareness and ultimate protection will all contribute to a successful defense of these last of the really big cats.
Now for the final fight against greed and selfishness. When the elephants are extinct, as seems likely at the moment, that ivory price in China will rise even higher!
Why should we mourn an African elephant? Maybe because they mourn their own dead. Or better, because the environments of Africa today contains a mere 10,000, reducing annually by a massive number. The Chinese have to stop their trade in many countries and we have to fight for our elephants very hard. Otherwise, all 3 species will be extinct, like the mammoths.
The rhinos and elephants of Kruger are among the best-protected in Africa. Still, the greed of ivory poachers and pseudo-medicinal horn suppliers shows its ugly face, much more prominently in other, less militarised zones of conservationist Africa.
Forest Elephant numbers have fallen by 62% in just over a decade, mainly due to increased poaching, driven by the demand and rising price of ivory. 30% of the forest elephants' range has also been lost in the same period.
We thought they were immune to climate change, because they appear to be so resilient but baby elephants suffer from small increases in temperature.
The established practice of Asian-inspired poaching of African and other elephants has had a terrible impact on populations everywhere.
Yesterday Gabon became the first nation in Central Africa to destroy all its ivory stockpiles, in a dramatic bonfire of seized ivory pieces. With the illegal trade in ivory decimating elephant numbers across Central Africa, Gabon's action is hoped to be the first step in a regional plan to halt the poachers and traders in their tracks.
Elephant pregnancy lasts for 22 months. At up to 680 days (average 647 days), elephants have the longest gestation period on earth. New research, published in Biological Sciences, investigates.
The WWF today has called for action to bring the killers of up to 350 Savanna elephants, in Cameroon last month, to justice. It also wants to see cooperation between Sudan, Chad and Cameroon to stop the poachers, who have been driven to new heights of elephant slaughter by the demand for ivory from China and Thailand.
Could it be that elephants are our superiors in matrilocal (mother-based), hierarchical and complex social structures? Research into fossil elephant trackways investigates their behavior.
The eating experiences of the wild African elephant, Loxodonta africana, over several decades have been difficult to measure until isotopic studies came to the rescue.
The unique pachyderm living on the giant island of Sumatra has halved in population since 1985. Some of the eight provinces have no elephants left, through conflict, capture and killing. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has today come out declaring the urgent need for Indonesian action.
Record large seizures of illegal ivory last year, from around 2,500 elephants, have made it a grim year, say conservationists. At least 13 seizures have been made of more than 800kg of ivory - more than double the previous year.
Human-Animal conflict research carried out by Dr. Lucy E. King was based on the premise that elephants, like most if us, are scared of being stung by bees. This led to an innovative beehive fence to reduce conflict between the huge mammal and the local people in Kenya.
Leonardo di Caprio has this week taken over as global ambassador for this year's theme with the IFAW. TheInternational Fund for Animal Welfare is reminding us that it's twenty years since the ivory trade ban was put in place.
New research shows how elephants have adapted to extreme heat in a manner similar to desert mammals such as camels. Elephants have evolved a novel strategy for regulating body temperature, which allows them to endure soaring temperatures during the day without succumbing to heat stress.
Forest elephants survey in the Cote d'Ivoire. Forest elephants in Cote d'Ivoire are still under threat from poaching despite a worldwide ban on the sale of ivory, a new WWF study has revealed. Researchers initially set out to determine the numbers of forest elephants in Cote dIvoire's Tai National Park.
WWF, the wildlife charity, says the decision by the body which monitors illegal trade in endangered species to close the doors on its discussions over the ivory trade risk harming the body's credibility.
The government of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has withdrawn permission that allows companies to drill for oil in Africa's Virunga National Park. Virunga National Park is Africa's first National Park. It has an astonishingly high biodiversity and is home to many rare species including chimpanzees, forest elephants and the endangered eastern gorilla.
A new study used recordings of lions to prove that older elephants are indeed wiser elephants and that groups are willing to accept the leadership of a wise old head and thrive as a result. Scientists from the University of Sussex have just published the results of their research in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of Biological Sciences and say that elephant groups with elderly female members make better decisions because they defer to the superior knowledge of their seniors.
Elephants are commonly regarded as being intelligent but the sheer size of these majestic beasts has made proving that tough - until now. New research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of the Sciences in America aims to prove that Elephants are clued-up enough to know how to work as a team.
A real conservation success story, a new elephant census in Kenya's Tsavo ecosystem shows numbers increasing despite ivory poaching and a prolonged drought in the area. The Earth Times spoke to Patrick Omondi, senior assistant director of Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), who co-ordinated the elephant census, which is held every three years.
A new tool could help wildlife crime officers worldwide to trace the origin of illegally traded elephant ivory. German scientists, in cooperation with WWF are building a database that will pinpoint the specific origin of illegal ivory.