It's time to address the massive elephant in the room -- because if we don't, the booming international trade in wildlife could soon wipe out two of the world's most imperiled species.
Africa's elephants are being poached to near extinction for their ivory. Fewer than 100,000 forest elephants and 400,000 savannah elephants are thought to remain, down from more than 1 million animals just 40 years ago. Yet some ivory sales remain legal in the United States -- and, in fact, the country has the world's second-largest ivory market behind China.
Pangolins, small and exotic-looking mammals covered with large scales, once inhabited broad swaths of Asia and Africa but have been poached to near extinction in many areas. Hunted for their meat and scales (believed by some to have medicinal properties), these adorably armored wonders may soon disappear due to their legal sale in Asia and the United States.
To raise the alarm and restrict trade in these imperiled species, last year the Center for Biological Diversity and allies asked the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect pangolins and both African elephant species as endangered.
The Service just agreed that such action may be warranted -- so tell the agency to do its part to save these species and end the trade in rare wildlife.
April 6, 2016 Action Alert ID# 359
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