Wildlife Management in Africa

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Wildlife Management in Africa

In the past three decades, many of Africa's wild animals have suffered a massive decline in population due to poaching. Africa is the world's second largest continent and home to thousands of species of animals. Unlike in North America, most of these animals roam completely free in an almost totally undeveloped environment. In attempt to save these animals from possible extinction, anti-poaching laws have been enacted by governments throughout Africa, as well as an international ban on ivory trade. Anti-poaching regulations have in turn stemmed the formation of programs and policies for the management of Africa's wildlife.

Poaching: Background

Poaching, the illegal killing of protected animals, occurs in Africa for a variety of reasons. The most profitable reason is the ivory trade. Hundreds of elephants and Rhinos are slaughtered every year for their ivory tusks, which claim a sizeable profit on the black market. Many hunters also poach for the sport of it, the thrill of the hunt. Many of the country's native peoples, however, poach animals as a means to stay alive. Because the wildlife of Africa roams so free, many people and crops are damaged and destroyed every year and natives poach the animals for self-defense. Financial concerns also drive many natives to poaching, seeing as most of Africa is still considered to be third world and an elephant tusk can mean the difference between starving to death and a prosperous year (Messer, 50). Poaching also has negative effects on the environment, and on the economy. Governments in Africa and around the world have tried to enforce strict anti-poaching laws, and also regulate the ivory trade, until recently however, both efforts have been in...

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