As a result of the tremendous pressure from poaching, nature’s response has been extreme as well. Large numbers of female elephants are now found to have no tusks which eliminate them as targets for poachers!
An elephant herd consists of related females and their young and is managed by the eldest female. Adult males rarely join a herd and lead a solitary life, only approaching herds during the mating season.
The tuskless trait appears to run in families and may have been a result of tuskless females being spared by poachers — tuskless mothers survive in greater numbers and hence have more tuskless daughters.
It’s clear that tusklessness is on the increase. However, elephants use their tusks as weapons to battle during mating season and as tools to dig for water and roots. Nevertheless, it seems nature is recognizing that poachers are a greater threat to an elephant’s existence than its diminished ability to forage or to mate.
These beautiful elephants were recently photographed in Ruaha National Park Tanzania.
The Ministry of Tourism & Natural Resources has decided to study the increase in tuskless elephants…read more