The illegal trade in wildlife, which includes endangered species, illegal logging and fishing, is now the fourth largest criminal enterprise globally following drug smuggling, human trafficking and counterfeiting. According to a joint United Nations Environment-Interpol report, the illegal trade in wildlife is 26% higher than previously estimated, worth as much as USD $23 billion per year.
Pangolins are the most trafficked animal in the world with scientists estimating that over one million pangolins have been poached from the wild and illegally traded in the past decade. All eight species of Pangolin are classified by the IUCN as threatened with extinction.Read more
An Elephant is killed every 15 minutes with around 90% of African Elephants being wiped out in the last century. Elephants are being poached at a greater rate than they are reproducing, meaning the species could be extinct in the next decade.
One rhino is killed every eight hours for its horn which on the black market is more expensive than gold or cocaine, gram for gram. In South Africa alone, which is home to the worlds largest population of rhino, 1054 rhino were poached in 2016.
Today, the African Wild Dog is listed as an Endangered species as African Wild Dog population numbers have been rapidly declining, particularly in recent years. There are thought to be approximately 6 600 individuals left roaming sub-Saharan Africa today, with numbers still declining. The fact that they are particularly vulnerable to the spread of disease by livestock, over and above hunting and habitat loss issues, is thought to be the next most serious cause for the declining population.Read more