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Posts Tagged East Africa

Fighting for cheetahs amidst an illegal pet trade

Photo of lone adult cheetah standing in savanna grassland

 

In 1900, cheetahs thrived across Africa and parts of Asia. Today, that picture is vastly different. Africa’s cheetahs occupy a thin slice of their former habitat and number only 6,674. This vulnerable big cat has lost 89 percent of its historic range — and the remaining habitat falls outside of protected areas. The reasons for the crisis include human-wildlife conflict, habitat loss and fragmentation, loss of prey, and a lesser-known threat: the underground pet trade.

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World Heritage in Danger: protecting Africa's natural wealth

Close-up photo of a gelada baboon in the Simien Mountains landscape in Ethiopia

 

Wild lands across Africa are home to rare, threatened, and endangered species of immense value to conservation, contributing to the common heritage of humanity. Recognizing their extraordinary value and to preserve their ecological wealth for future generations, some of these gems of biodiversity are conferred with World Heritage Site status. However, a robust international trade in illegal wildlife parts is decimating keystone wildlife populations while rapid industrialization and climate change are negatively impacting the ecological integrity of these crucial landscapes.

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Mentoring wildlife crime prosecutors to ensure successful convictions

Photo of carved ivory and other illegal wildlife products seized

      

Monday, June 7, 2010 stands out clearly in my memory. I had just been appointed as a public prosecutor for wildlife crimes, and my first mission was to visit various courts and introduce myself in my new role. I started at Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi, where the Chief Magistrate kindly suggested that I sit in her courtroom for the morning session to acquaint myself — a relief, given that I had no experience in prosecution.

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Prosecuting wildlife criminals using sniffer dog evidence

Close-up of a sniffer dog trained for the AWF Canine for Conservation Program

    

Dogs have been part of our world since time immemorial, considered a best friend and companion. But canines are not only loyal, they are also highly intelligent and possess a dazzling sense of smell. These enviable qualities form the basis of African Wildlife Foundation’s Canines for Conservation Program.

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Virunga: Mountain gorilla sanctuary under threat

Photo of family of 4 mountain gorillas in Virunga

          

There is greater biodiversity in Africa’s Albertine Rift region where Virunga National Park is located than in any other ecosystem in Africa. This richly diverse array of habitats is home to critical populations of the world’s last remaining mountain gorillas.

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