Conservationists Formally Request U.S. List Giraffes As ‘Endangered’ Due To Poaching

By now, many people are aware of the debate in Washington to end the Obama-era ban on elephant “trophies” from entering the country, but conservationists are now pointing to the U.S. to help with another animal’s “silent extinction.” Five different environmental groups have formally asked the United States to list giraffes as endangered as a result of the continued trophy hunting of the tallest land animal.


A legal petition was filed last week demanding that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provide endangered species protections to the giraffe, which has suffered a drastic decline in population over the last 30 years.


The International Union for the Conservation of Nature listed giraffes as a threatened species in December, claiming that 97,500 of giraffes exist in sub-Saharan Africa today. The group reports that is a 40-percent drop in the giraffe population since 1985 and that there are fewer giraffes than elephants in Africa.


Part of the decline in the giraffe population is due to a loss of habitat, disease, illegal hunting for bushmeat, and collisions with vehicles and power lines, but the petition also claims that U.S. hunters who travel to Africa to “big game hunt” giraffes are also at fault for the decline.

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