The killing spree is over but it’s no time to celebrate

The poachers rode into the park on horseback from Chad and Sudan, armed with automatic weapons and a single purpose: Kill as many elephants for their tusks as possible.

And they have succeeded in doing what they set out to do. Perhaps as many as half the elephants in Cameroon’s Bouba Njida National Park are now dead. So far, more than 300 elephants have been counted. The poachers told local villagers that they had killed 650 elephants. Whatever the final figure, the elephants were butchered for ivory that will be carved into figurines, chop sticks, signature stamps and trinkets. For the most part, the buyers will be affluent Chinese.

Cameroon deployed six hundred soldiers from the Bataillon d’Intervention Rapide, a helicopter and three ultra-light aircrafts, but it was too late. The killings started early January, but the government did not act until March when negative publicity forced it to do something to stop the massacre. The soldiers are not trained to conduct counter-poaching operations, and the poachers outgunned them, but they were able to secure the park and will remain until sometime in April.

The poachers have left the park and are probably in the Central African Republic and/or Chad.

The chief of the EU delegation in Sudan informed the Sudanese Minister for Tourism, Antiques and Wildlife that some Sudanese poachers were from the Rizeigat clan.

No surprise: Money is the poachers’ incentive. The plan is to sell the ivory on the black market and turn around and buy weapons for either guerrilla or terrorist activities, their first motivation.

You can help fight poaching, by signing our petition to say ‘No!’ to ivory.


Comments: 6

6 years ago

All species suffer when one species suffers.
What i dont understand is why these animals as well as tigers,rhinos,lions,gorillas etc are not classified as CITES I???what the hell are they waitinmg for? to be one left???

6 years ago

if you want to really understand this story google elephant poaching and look at the images...sickening!

6 years ago

this story made me sick...i will never look at a piano the same way again, elephants are one of my favorite animals, theyre so big but beautiful. i cried.

6 years ago

Use your own teeth! Dont take the Elephant's! Horton never hurt too Hoos, but the Hoos hurt him? NO! Its just wrong!

6 years ago

Its time the world takes responsibility for the brutal massacre of elephants in Cameroon instead of looking the other way. We've allowed tiger farms, fur farms and bear farms. We allow sale and trade of ivory, rhino horns and other wildlife. At the international meets, the governments tend to oppose any move to restrict wildlife trade and prefer to waste time in squabbling and passing bucks instead of taking firm action to safeguard wildlife. Promises, if any, are made only half-heartedly and are quickly forgotten. The time for a change is overdue. The CITES meet is due in July. The governments and world leaders must take firm stand against wildlife trade and commit to phasing out of inhumane tiger and bear farms and end in trade of all wildlife, including elephants, rhinos, whales, sharks and others. There’s simply no place for wildlife trade in a civilized world. We can benefit more by protecting wildlife. So many tourists visit Africa to visit its stunning wildlife, which benefits its people. But a handful of criminals benefit by killing the wildlife. Sadly, we allow this.

6 years ago

heel erg stoppen

6 years ago

I am just so horrified that any human being would murder such a beautiful animal as The Elephant! I am so furious! I am just so Angry. Wish there was something I could do.

A concerned Animal Lover,

Heather W. Bowers
Mobile, AL., USA

Post a comment


Azzedine Downes,IFAW President and CEO
President and Chief Executive Officer
Céline Sissler-Bienvenu, Director, France and Francophone Africa
Director, France and Francophone Africa
Dr. Elsayed Ahmed Mohamed, Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Dr. Joseph Okori
Regional Director, Southern Africa and Program Director, Landscape Conservation
Dr. Maria (Masha) N. Vorontsova, Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Faye Cuevas, Esq.
Senior Vice President
Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
Regional Director, Asia
Executive Vice President
Executive Vice President
Matt Collis, Director, International Policy
Director, International Policy
Pauline Verheij, Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Peter LaFontaine, Campaigns Manager, IFAW Washington, D.C.
Campaigns Manager, IFAW Washington, D.C.
Rikkert Reijnen, Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Country Representative, Germany
Country Representative, Germany
Staci McLennan, Director, EU Office
Director, EU Office
Tania McCrea-Steele, Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Vivek Menon, Director of IFAW partner, Wildlife Trust of India
Senior Advisor to the CEO on Strategic Partnerships & Philanthropy