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Drones help curb elephant poaching in Africa!

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Declining elephant populations

According to MEP, an African elephant is poached every 15 minutes, so they will be expected to go extinct by 2030 if nothing is done to prevent them from being butchered alive for their ivory. Currently, Ivory is being sold for around $3000 per pound in China, so two imported tusks can fetch up to $200,000. MEP also stated that the illegal ivory trade is connected to terrorist groups like Al-Shabaab.

elephant

Photo credit: MEP. In 2013 alone, an estimated 35,000 elephants were poached for their ivory

The importance of elephants

Elephants are also known as keystone herbivores, so they’re animals that basically have a huge impact on the ecosystem. With more elephants being slaughtered, there will be more trees and thorny bushes around and less clear grasslands, which is an environment other animals depend on to survive.

“What we find is that drones for mitigating human-elephant conflict are very useful. They are very easy to fly so rangers can fly them. When you’re herding elephants that’s paramount to make sure that you’re in control of the situation,” said MEP CEO Marc Goss.

Drone technology has provided organizations like MEP with the means to combat poaching with ease. With more UAVs revolutionizing deliveries, photography and now anti-poaching, drones can now be seen as just another tool to get the job done.

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