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Last year, the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force reported that a number of baby elephants aged two and five years old had been abducted from Hwange National Park. Earlier this year, twenty-four were shipped to China to perform circus-like acts for the public; 170 more are currently waiting to join them.

As justification, Zimbabwean lawmakers claim the elephants are disturbing their neighbors, eating too much food, and are a threat to the economy. To rectify these apparently horrendous crimes, the government has decided to sell the elephant calves into slavery — to live out the rest of their lives as objects of entertainment.

Each elephant is being sold by the Zimbabwean government for about $40,000 — a small price for the lives of some of the most caring sentient beings on the planet.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Secretariat has stated, "[T]he export would not be detrimental to the survival of the species in the wild." However, since the forest-dwelling and savannah elephants of Africa are still classified as a single species by the IUCN — despite evidence suggesting they are genetically distinct — the statement by CITES is based in conjecture and not fact.

Tell CITES Secretary-General John E. Scanlon to retract his approval of this trade, and postpone any decision on African elephants until the IUCN has re-evaluated the species status of African elephants.

Sign Here






Dear Secretary-General Scanlon,

Thank you for the important work you do with regard to the conservation of endangered species. The CITES Secretariat has proven itself integral to the continued survival of earth's animals, making it one of the most important organizations currently in operation.

However, your recent decision to allow the capture, sale, and exploitation of nearly 200 Zimbabwean elephant calves has raised significant concern among conservationists. According to the CITES report on the decision, the move will not have a significant impact on the African elephant "species."

The Secretariat presumably reached this conclusion based on the IUCN's current assessment of the African elephant's conservation status. Yet the IUCN listing for Loxodonta africana also contains a taxonomic note: "Preliminary genetic evidence suggests that there may be at least two species of African elephant... [and a] third species... has also been postulated." The IUCN claims that more research is required before re-classification of the African elephant, and therefore the current assessment includes all elephant populations in Africa.

I understand that the large population size of Zimbabwean elephants can make it difficult to see how removing a couple hundred individuals would make a significant impact. However, the second-greatest threat to Zimbabwe's elephants after poachers is the misclassification, and subsequent misinterpretation of the existential danger these animals face.

Since we do not currently know how many of each species of African elephant currently live where, it is impossible to definitively say that relocating any will not endanger the survival of one species or the other. Therefore, I insist that you withdrawal your approval of the Zimbabwe government's sale of kidnapped baby elephants.

Not only is the enslavement of these calves ethically egregious, but (as far as we know) by allowing this travesty you may be facilitating the extinction of an entire species of elephant.

Thank you.

Petition Signatures


Feb 25, 2018 Sheila Magesky
Feb 25, 2018 Brenda Pereira
Feb 25, 2018 Kathy Krol
Feb 25, 2018 Gail Harold Skinner
Feb 25, 2018 Natalia Ilina
Feb 25, 2018 Lorraine Greyvenstein
Feb 25, 2018 Heather Denney
Feb 25, 2018 Shirley Cooksley
Feb 24, 2018 Ronald McClure
Feb 24, 2018 John Moszyk
Feb 24, 2018 Elena Persello
Feb 24, 2018 Mary Bergman
Feb 23, 2018 Wendy Dalton
Feb 23, 2018 Lanette Rapp
Feb 23, 2018 Brenda Choi
Feb 23, 2018 Susan Welsford
Feb 23, 2018 Annie Stewart THis is blatant abuse made more egregious because Elephants are one of the most emperiled species on Earth!
Feb 23, 2018 Paula Mattila
Feb 23, 2018 Morena Pichardo
Feb 23, 2018 Lorna Davies
Feb 23, 2018 Jane Gilmore
Feb 23, 2018 Randyl Sachs
Feb 23, 2018 Yasmin Engineer
Feb 23, 2018 Janet Gattsek
Feb 23, 2018 Rose Caffarelli
Feb 22, 2018 Andrey Yushchenko
Feb 21, 2018 Catherine Williams
Feb 21, 2018 cinzia caporali
Feb 21, 2018 Ann Conney
Feb 20, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Feb 20, 2018 Marcia Brice
Feb 20, 2018 Terri Robb
Feb 20, 2018 Lauri Fielding
Feb 20, 2018 Sarah Mallows
Feb 20, 2018 becca kelliher this is sac - religious ! they r all just money hungry beaurocrats !
Feb 20, 2018 Melanie Blackburn
Feb 20, 2018 Alessandro Romeo
Feb 20, 2018 Thomas Peterson
Feb 20, 2018 Ann hertog
Feb 20, 2018 sarah hogan They are to be with their parents, their herd for life. Set an example to the world and end this barbaric trade.
Feb 20, 2018 Christina Gonzalez These magnificent animals are reaching extinction levels. Everyone needs to do their part in order to save the species and individuals animals. Cruelty to any animal is immoral. Remember they were here first!
Feb 20, 2018 Luz Allasia
Feb 20, 2018 Nora Sachs
Feb 20, 2018 Jennifer Andrews
Feb 20, 2018 Nicholas Taylor-De'Ath
Feb 20, 2018 RANDI FRIEZE ELEPHANTS ARE SENSITIVE ANIMALS THAT NEED A HERD. PLEASE STOP SELLING THEM INTO SLAVERY !
Feb 20, 2018 Lesley Blissett
Feb 20, 2018 Wendy Byfield
Feb 19, 2018 G. Tompkins
Feb 19, 2018 (Name not displayed)

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