Myanmars Elephants by Ko Myo

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Two men suspected of being wild elephant poachers stand for photo documentation, together with the slices of dried elephant skin found with them, at the police station in Ngwe Saung. At least 115 wild elephants have been slaughtered by poachers within the past five years in the dense jungles of Irrawaddy, Pegu Range (Bago Yoma), and the periphery of Yangon region, with a record high of 59 in 2017. This sudden spike led to increased support to the country’s national plan to protect elephants and strengthened the response from the Myanmar government, international organizations such as WWF, and local CSOs. Campaigns such as Voice for Momos have been organized, and training has been given to forestry staff, mahouts, and the rangers of Myanmar’s Emergency Elephant Response Unit. The increased anti-poaching patrols led to 15 arrests of poachers in 2017.