Toronto, Aug 13 (Canadian-Media): World Elephant Day is observed on 12 August annually to raise awareness among people the importance of preserving and protecting the elephants from extinction, as they are critical for maintaining the biodiversity of rain forests, media reports said.
World Elephant Day. Image credit: www.worldelephantday.org
Elephants are on the verge of extinction. Poaching and habitat loss, ignorance as well as negligence of the people about the threats that elephant faces such as elephant rides, trading elephants for ivory are some of the common causes of their poor health.
The first international Elephant Day was celebrated on Aug 12 August, 2012. Since then, it is observed annually by more than 65 wildlife organisations and several people around the world.
Back in 2011 Michael Clark and Patricia Sima, two filmmakers from Canada and Sivaporn Dardarananda, Secretary General of the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation in Thailand decided to celebrate World's Elephant Day in 2011.
African elephants are listed Vulnerable and Asian elephants as Endangered in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red list of threatened species. The best way to observe this day is to educate yourself and others about elephant and raise raise awareness about the issues faced by them through social media, encouraging people to watch documentary to better understand the health hazards of elephants. Donations should be made to the foundation dedicated to protecting elephants from poachers or relocating them to locations better suited their needs.
In the year 1997, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) by Resolution 10.10 adopted at the tenth Conference of the Parties established MIKE (Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants) program to stop killing of elephants.
Around 28 sites participating in the MIKE program in Asia which are distributed around 13 countries. India has 10 sites which are followed by two sites each in Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand, and one site each in Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.