• As the world prepares for the 18th annual Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and their Conference of Parties (CoP18), four southern African countries — Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa — have submitted a petition and proposal seeking to remove restrictions and allow international trade in registered raw ivory of their elephants.

  • Pairs of elephant tusks that are separated during smuggling are illuminating the tracks of wildlife crime.

    Identifying matching elephant DNA in different shipments of tusks can help scientific sleuths connect the shipments to the same ivory trafficking cartel, a new study finds. That technique has already revealed the presence of three major interconnected cartels that are active in Africa, researchers report September 19 in Science Advances.

  • Demands from southern African countries to allow international trade in elephant ivory are extremely dangerous. Proponents are trying to create the impression that wild populations are growing to problematic numbers when, in fact, the species remains in decline across the continent and is threatened with long-term extinction.

  • Japan is failing to regulate its domestic ivory market, resulting in the perfect cover for illegally imported ivory and a supply source for illegal export.