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World Elephant Day 2021 – August 12 

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World Elephant Day is annually observed across the globe on 12th August to create awareness about the dangers faced by Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) and African elephants (Loxodonta africana) and the threats to their survival.

The year 2021 marks the 10th anniversary of World Elephant Day.


i.The World Elephant Day was an initiative jointly created by Patricia Sims, Canadian Wildlife Filmmaker; Michael Clark, Canazwest Pictures and Sivaporn Dardarnanda, Secretary-General of Elephant Reintroduction Foundation, Thailand.

ii.The first World Elephant Day was celebrated on 12th August 2012.

Threats faced by Elephants:

  • Wildlife crime
  • Poaching for the illegal ivory trade
  • Loss of habitat and ancient migratory routes
  • Human-Elephant conflict

Efforts to protect Elephants:

i.To reduce the poaching of elephants for ivory, The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), banned the international commercial trade in elephant ivory in 1989.

ii.In 2018, China, the largest market of elephant ivory banned the domestic trade of elephants.

iii.The TRAFFIC, the Wildlife Trade Monitoring Network, manages the Elephant Trade Information System (ETIS), a global record of ivory seizures, to identify routes and countries of particular importance in illegal trade.

iv.The World Wild Fund for Nature(WWF) works with the government of elephant range countries, and non-governmental partners to establish new protected areas within elephant ranges and improve management effectiveness within existing protected areas.


In Asia, around 70% of the wild elephants live outside protected areas. Less than 20% of the African elephant habitats are under formal protection.

India holds 60% of ‘endangered’ Asian elephant population.