Forest elephant future
Depressing news greets researcher Andrea Turkalo at Dzanga Ba as more poaching has been reported in the area. The demand for ivory is now threatening the very existence of forest elephants and recent data has shown between 40 and 50% of the elephant population in Central Africa has been lost. The result is increased pressure on this special forest clearing which remains a magnet for forest elephants, and provides a privileged window on their lives. A new calf at the Bai highlights the need to protect these forest elephants, for in a perfect world, this young elephant could return time after time for the next 60 years to take the salts, meet up with family and find a mate. Andrea isn't optimistic about their future. She has been here for 20 years, and though she won't be able to stay forever, she's committed to protecting the forest elephants for as long as she can still walk. If she and the research team were to leave, the elephants would be poached and forest elephants would disappear entirely.