Wildlife Conservation News

Wildlife and our last remaining wild places are being destroyed because of human action or inaction and because of our own short –term greed.

Peter Fearnhead, CEO, African Parks Network, South Africa


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Category: Giraffe Conservation

  1. Calling all giraffe lovers around the world – giraffes need your voice!

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    Giraffes are in trouble.  The giraffe population is already down between 36 to 40%.

    For the first time ever, 5 African countries are proposing to add the giraffe to the list of protected species.  This would really make a difference.

    How you can help giraffes with a click

    There’s a petition calling on CITES to launch and fund an Africa-wide Giraffe Action Plan.  The Plan would:

    • Recover giraffe populations
    • Protect giraffe habitats
    • Support local communities living alongside giraffes

    The petition can be found at Avaaz.org.  Avaaz.org is a world-wide community with nearly 50 million members.  It has petitions you can set up and sign to give your support to proposed changes or messages about causes you care about and want to help

    Please sign this petition to help giraffes today!

    When you go through to Avaaz and the petition, there’s a picture of someone called Tess and a dead giraffe, just to warn you. 

    Avaaz say that Tess killed the giraffe for fun. She's certainly got a big smile on her face. There are no words to describe how I feel about people who do this.

    Why this petition to help giraffes now?

    Very shortly, countries from across the world will meet for a crucial global wildlife summit.

    Back in January 2019, 57 proposals to amend the list of species subject to CITES regulations were submitted by 90 countries for consideration.   This consideration will take place from 23 May to 3 June 2019 in Colombo, Sri Lanka, at the 18th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

    (I can’t help feeling that if they spent less time making up titles like that, and more on protecting wildlife, we might make more progress.)

    So how could this CITES meeting affect giraffes?

    For the first time ever, five African countries have proposed adding giraffes to the list of protected species.

    You can see the species here that the meeting will consider, and find out about the proposal to protect giraffes here

    Sign the Petition at Avaaz.org now,

    Then please share the petition widely to help make the senseless killing of this giraffe into a new direction for giraffes.



  2. African Wildlife Foundation gives $25 million to help wildlife and wildlife habitats in Africa

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    The African Wildlife Foundation will invest $25 million over the next 4 years to support the work being done by local communities and African governments to protect wild lands and wildlife in Africa.

    The pledge was made at the recent Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) conference in London.  AWF’s President Kaddu Sebunya said that poaching and illegal trade in wildlife poses an acute threat to Africa’s rich heritage of natural wealth.

    Kaddu says that there is some recovery and stabilization of some vital wildlife populations.   AFW has invested $13.1 million to tackle the illegal wildlife trade in Africa and also a further $5.5 million with public-sector partners.   The total of $18.6 million has been used to:

    • Support anti-poaching efforts on the ground
    • Strengthen prosecutorial and judiciary processes
    • Put sniffer dogs in critical transit points
    • Campaign to stop demand in Asia

    As a result:

    • 10 out of the 14 populations of elephants the funding has been targeting are increasing or are stable.
    • All rhino populations and 7 out of 9 carnivore populations that AWF supports are increasing or are stable
    • Prosecutors are building stronger case;  judges are delivery stronger sentences for wildlife crimes
    • Sniffer dogs have made over 250 finds

    And now this most recent pledge will support programmes putting the priorities in place that came out of the London IWT conference:

    • To build African leadership and ownership of the illegal wildlife trade in Africa
    • Protect habitats and key populations of rhinos, elephants, great apes, large carnivores and giraffes
    • Enhance detection of wildlife crimes and strengthen the ability to prosecute and judge, putting criminals behind bars.

    The belief is that Africa must own and drive the illegal wildlife trade work.  The London conference will help strengthen partnerships across borders to fight the illegal wildlife trade in an effective way.

    Four key elements are crucial to give Africa’s wildlife a chance, according to AWF Chief Scientist and VP of Species Protection, Dr Philip Muruthi, and they are:

    1. Keep wildlife safe from poachers
    2. Make wildlife products difficult to move around
    3. Actively involve key local players
    4. Dampen the demand for wildlife products

    Visit the African Wildlife Foundation

  3. Giraffe conservation in Kenya

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    There’s good news for giraffe in Kenya.

    The Giraffe Conservation Foundation reports that they have made efforts to make sure that giraffe numbers in Kenya receive better protection. 

    The charity has given financial support to the Kenya Wildlife Service and other conservation partners to undertake aerial surveys in northern Kenya.

    And good news!  The surveys are showing a 30% increase in reticulated giraffe numbers on communal land and private conservancies in the last 6 years.

    Meantime, in the south of Kenya, the charity has held the first ever Masai Giraffe Working Group meeting to bring conservation partners together with the Kenya Wildlife Service.  The aim was to identify current threats to Masai giraffe and pinpoint measures to protect them.

    And there’s more – the charity’s year long surveys in Mwea National Reserve and Ruma National Park show there are double the numbers of Nubian giraffe than previously thought, so this is a great boost to Nubian giraffe there.

    There are renewed efforts to update and complete a National Recovery and Action Plan for giraffe in Kenya, held over a two day workshop.  The plan will be launched later this year.

    Don’t forget – a date for your diary – the 21st June is World Giraffe Day.  Why not adopt a giraffe as a gift for someone or for yourself?

    Click here for wildlife holiday ideas in Kenya listed on Responsible Travel

     Click here for wildlife holiday ideas in Kenya listed on Responsible Travel


  4. Success in Manila for the CMS and Migratory Species

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    The effort to protect our wildlife gathered momentum as a result of decisions made in Manila last week at the 12th session of the Conference of the parties to the CMS.

    The CMS is the Convention on the Conservation of the Migratory Species of Wild Animals. You can find out more about it here and there's a list of countries who are involved here.

    This week, it reported that 1,000 delegates representing the world governments attending the year’s largest wildlife summit had collectively endorsed actions on the conservation of a variety of migratory species.

    CMS provides a global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory animals and their habitats.  It brings the States together through which these animals pass, and it lays the legal foundation for internationally co-ordinated conservation measures. This is an environmental treaty under the aegis of the UN Environment Programme. 

    The conference took place in Manila in the Philippines from 23 to 28 October.  The theme was “Their Future is our Future – Sustainable Development for Wildlife and People.”

    Asia, Africa, the Americas, Europe and Oceania made submissions covering species such as vulture, the endangered Whale Shark, and Africa’s great carnivores.

    The week of negotiations have resulted to a stronger commitment by countries to conserve the world’s migratory wildlife.  The Convention which took place in Manila has a compliance review mechanism now, and it has adopted species that test the boundaries of international wildlife conservation.

    There were also agreements to work together to reduce the negative impacts on migratory species  of

    • marine debris
    • noise pollution
    • renewable energy
    • climate change

    “The Conference has also contributed to a growing global recognition of the importance of nature to our human well-being and the multiple connections between wildlife and people.  It has helped to convey the message that the future of migratory wildlife is integral to our own future and that we all have the responsibility to act.   Agreements made at CMS COP12 have firmly underlined this important message,” said Bradnee Chambers, Executive Secretary of CMS.

    Director Theresa Mundita Lim of the Biodiversity Management Bureau said, “Migratory animals play a critical role in our planet’s ecosystem.   They act as pollinators, control pests and are a source of food and income.” 

    Notable outcomes of COP12 included more protection for:

    • Three species of shark and three species of ray
    • Avian species such as the Steppe Eagle, four species of Asian Vulture, 5 Sub-Saharan Vulture Species, the Lappet-faced Vultlure and the Christmas Frigatebird, a subspecies of the Black Noddy, the Yellow Bunding and the Lesser and Great Grey Shrike
    • The Giraffe – less than 90,000 giraffes remain in the wild in Africa
    • The Leopard and the Lion, paving the way for a joint initiative on protecting Africa’s great carnivores
    • The chimpanzee who is facing a 50% drop in numbers over 3 generations and fast habitat loss
    • The near extinct Gobi-Bear – only 45 of the subspecies of the brown bear remain in the wild in Mongolia and China
    • The Caspian Seal, the only marine mammal found in the world’s largest inland sea
    • The Africa Wild Ass, Przewalski’s Horse and 4 species of Lasiurus bat 

    In all 12 mammals were given greater protection under CMS, 16 birds and 6 species of fish. 

    Other outcomes of COP12:

    • Consensus on a new inter-governmental task force to curb the illegal killing of birds crossing the east-Asian-Australasian Flyway – that spans 22 countries
    • A conservation roadmap for the African Wild Ass (there are just 70 left in the wild)
    • A Vulture Multi-Species Action plan to better protect 15 species of Old World Vulture in over 120 countries
    • CMS Guidelines on assessment impacts of marine noise activities
    • Expanding the Convention’s work on preventing the poisoning of birds with a special focus on the effects of led
    • Action on aquatic wild meat which is becoming a conservation problem on a scale similar to terrestrial bushmeat

    Awards were also given in recognition of outstanding commitment and long term conservation efforts to the Environment Agency of Abu Dhabi, the EU, Germany, Monaco and the government of the Philippines.

    Ms Lim said:  We will put in place the necessary national measure to integrate the conservation and protection of migratory wildlife species into our development planning processes and we will engage all sectors of society in crafting these measures.  

    We can protect only those species within our territory.  Beyond our territory, we urge other countries to also initiate measures to protect these species and to join the Convention.”

    Find out more here