Friday, August 5, 2011

Cameroon and Chad Sign Treaty to Fight Elephant Poaching

An elephant family

It has been reported that ministers from Cameroon and Chad had stated that both the nations have signed a pact to increase efforts to battle poaching of elephants. Both of these Central African countries had suffered from rampant poaching of elephants for their ivory to Asian markets and the local bushmeat trade. Majority of activities were occurring in a protected area on the border between the two countries. This area is more than 300,000 hectares, covering the Bouba Ndjidda National Park in Cameroon and the Sena Oura National Park in Chad. According to Hassan Terap, Chad's Environment Minister, the area makes up 70,000 hectares on Chad's side and majority of elephants there number around 3,000 individuals. Five years ago, their numbers were 5,000 before being reduced down to 3,000 animals by poachers. Meanwhile, only 300 elephants presently remain in Bouba Ndjidda. In addition to elephants, both of these parks are home to other animals such as the black rhinoceros, monkeys, buffalo, and 24 species of antelopes, all of which are threatened by the bushmeat trade.

I'm very proud and happy to see what these two neighboring countries are doing with respect to their local wildlife. Both of them had their share of illegal poaching, and are now joining hands to fight this ongoing bloodshed. As part of the treaty, measurements include cooperation between authorities from both parks and increasing numbers of armed rangers. According to conservationists, poaching is worsening in Cameroon and Chad. This is especially true according to Cameroon's Forestry and Wildlife Minister Elvis Ngolle, who stated that the poachers are well-armed and the government needs a significant number of well-trained eco-guards to fight them. He further added that the goal is to preserve the wildlife for both economic and cultural benefits of the people. I can only hope that both Cameroon and Chad will live up to their standards according to the pact they signed. Both the neighbors had lost a great deal of their elephants and other wildlife to poachers, and now it is the time to take decisive action.

View article here

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