Elephants Killed in Record Numbers

    Kenya Wildlife Services (KWS) officers carry away elephant tusks that had been displayed to the press alongside arms and ammunition seized from poachers within the last six months in and around Kenya's wildlife protection areas at the KWS headquarters in Nairobi, on June 22, 2012. Some 1,179 suspected poachers have been arrested since the beginning of the year and 40 rifles, 770 rounds of ammunition anlong with 90 pieces of Elephant tusks weighing 665 kilogrammes confiscated. 133 Elephants and 11 Rhinos have been poached since January, 4,498 kilogrammes of bushmeat recovered, some 18 human deaths reported in an ongoing struggle with conservation in the East African nation that now faces alarmingly escalating incidences of poaching and human-wildlife conflict. AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA        (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)

    Tony Karumba, AFP / Getty Images

    African elephants are being killed in record numbers, and activists fear that members of the military may be involved in the unprecedented slaughter. Twenty-two elephants were killed in a single raid on a savanna in Garamba National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo—a spate of illegal killings that park guards say they now have reason to suspect was perpetrated by members of the Ugandan military hunting from a helicopter. “They even shot the babies,” said chief ranger Paul Onyango. Tens of thousands of elephants are being killed every year in Africa, conservationists say, as poachers kill them for nothing other than their tusks.

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