Wildlife summit votes down plan to allow sale of huge ivory stockpile

An attempt to allow a huge sale of stockpiled elephant ivory has been defeated at an international wildlife conference. The rancorous debate exposed deep divisions between African nations with opposing views on elephant conservation.

About 50 elephants are still being poached every day to supply ivory traffickers and all countries agree the world’s largest land animal needs greater protection. But southern African nations, which have some of the largest elephant populations, want to allow more legal sales of ivory to fund conservation and community development. But 32 other African nations argue all trade in elephants must end, including the trophy hunting legal in some states.

The new sale proposal was comprehensively voted down by 101 votes to 23.

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Giraffes to be protected as endangered species for the first time

The Cites nations did give new protection to the giraffe by voting to end the unregulated international trade in the animal’s parts.

There are fewer giraffes alive than elephants and their population has plunged by 40% since 1985 to just 97,500. However, this debate also exposed the same north-south divide in the continent.

The proposal was passed when countries voted by 106 to 21.

New Mexico proposes ban on wildlife trapping near cities

New restrictions on wildlife foot traps and wire snares were proposed Thursday by regulators seeking to resolve conflicts over trapping traditions and evolving attitudes about animal suffering.

The New Mexico Game and Fish agency outlined a proposal to ban traps and snares on select tracts of public lands outside of Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Las Cruces and Taos, along with a half-mile no-trapping buffer at officially recognized hiking trailheads.

The proposal includes mountainous areas east of Albuquerque that are popular for outdoor recreation, along with swaths of national forest along mountain highways leading to ski areas near Santa Fe and Taos. Trappers would be required to attend training. Also, design specifications for traps and snares are being suggested to reduce the risk of animals being maimed by snares and to ensure they don’t walk away with traps attached.

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