Browsing: wildlife

Africa: The internet dampens efforts to decelerate wildlife trafficking. www.theexchange.africa
  • The internet has evolved into a worldwide marketplace for the exotic animal trade
  • Southeast Asia, the final destination for many African wildlife goods, had a 50 per cent decrease in smuggling in 2020
  • Illegal wildlife trafficking is worth about US$7 billion to US$23 billion worldwide each year
  • As per the AWF, up to 2.7 million pangolins are smuggled into Chinese markets each year

The Coronavirus pandemic has redefined the African illegal wildlife trade by shifting transactions online, constraining trafficking networks, and increasing bush meat poaching among the poor.

Earlier this year, the illicit wildlife trade in Africa took an extraordinary turning point. Deep in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s tropical forest, a giant pangolin – an endangered animal species with plate-like scales that could weigh up to 30kg – was abducted by rebels who sought a US$500 ransom.

The Virunga jungle, home to lions, nearly extinct silverback gorillas, and

  • The tourism industry accounted for about seven per cent of Africa's GDP in 2019 and contributed $169 billion to its economy, employing more than 24 million people
  • Over 8,400 species of wild flora and fauna are critically endangered, while close to 30,000 more are deemed vulnerable. Over a million species are threatened with extinction. 
  • Illegal wildlife trade is estimated to be worth more than $23billion annually, fueled by institutional decay in law enforcement that consequently pushes many endangered species closer to the brink of extinction.

Africa hailed as the cradle of mankind and wildlife is endowed with spectacular flora and fauna and home to the world's seventh wonder, making it undisputedly a top-rated tourist destination. The continent is a hub of wildlife economies that have significantly morphed over the past two decades; pertinently propelled by the 'Big Five' wildlife economy activities that include: ecotourism, wildlife ranching, hunting and fishing, carbon…

  • The human-wildlife conflict has cost the Kenyan government KSh1.2 billion ($120 million) in the last five years alone and the figure is set to shoot upwards
  • While the headlines have raised the status of Kenya as a conservation hub, there has been a crisis brewing in the sector
  • In the period under review, KSh569 million ($5.69 million) was used to pay off 163 families whose kin were killed by wildlife in various parts of the country

Kenya has always been at the centre of wildlife conservation due to its world-renowned national parks and an active conservation movement. Drawn by the large economic benefits brought about by tourism, wildlife conservation is however increasingly becoming a strained trade.

Three events have happened to cement Kenya as the centre for conservation. First, a project to maintain the legacy of the last white rhino in the world received a boost after the country announced