The US Fish and Wildlife recently issued permits for the importation of 18 elephants from Swaziland, destined for 3 US zoos. These animals have been caught in the wild and are being set up for a lifetime of misery in the zoos. The zoos have tried to portray this as a humanitarian effort to save the elephants from certain culling or death from draught. Nothing can be farther from the truth. The elephant sale has been in the works long before anyone knew there would be a drought. We’ve been aware of the elephant export since at least October 2015, before the rainy season in Southern Africa started. The drought simply became a convenient straw man excuse. The alternatives aren’t death or zoos. We’re willing to fund either the feeding of the animals, or their safe relocation in the wild. There is absolutely zero moral justification at this stage for sending the elephants to the zoos.
groupelephant.com’s preference is that the elephants remain in Swaziland, but if this is not feasible, groupelephant.com would be willing to relocate them to South Africa or elsewhere in Southern Africa, so that they can remain in the wild. To this end groupelephant.com has offered to reimburse Swaziland’s costs relating to the elephants to date and an amount of $450,000 over a five year period, on condition that Swaziland either releases the elephants back into Swaziland’s reserves and onto a greater range, or allows for groupelephant.com to relocate them to the wild elsewhere. In addition we’ve offered to provide elephant management services, including reversible contraception, at no cost to Swaziland.
We’re asking for your help to petition the zoos from going ahead with the importation. There are three zoos involved and we ask that you click on the link to let the zoos know that you do not support them.
Alternatively, you can contact the zoos directly using the information below.
Sedgwick County Zoo Director - Mark Reed email: firstname.lastname@example.org or P: (316) 266-8201. P: (316) 706-6098
Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium Director - Dennis Pate email: email@example.com
Dallas Zoo Director - Gregg Hudson email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please share this effort far and wide, especially over social media channels.