DNA Test can find Poaching Hot-spots

 ELEPHANTS POACHING HOT-SPOTS!! The broadest application of DNA has been researched by science community where there is an attempt to cease illegal ivory trafficking. Thousands of innocent elephant have been killed in the thrust of poacher’s cupidity. DNA testing on ivory has displayed two Elephant poaching ‘HOT-SPOT’ in Africa. These DNA results help to trace the geographical indication of the seized ivory.


Approximately, 50,000 Elephants have been killed and there are about 400,000 African Elephants Population barely left. . The countries of Gab, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon and the Central African Republic have also reported under illegal poaching cases whereas the poaching hot spot straddles Tanzania and Mozambique.


University of Washington biologist, Samuel Wasser has made a pioneer contribution in using DNA extraordinarily to map out the illegal ivory trafficking. He previously used elephant dung, tissue, and hair for tracing the regional population. He then developed DNA extraction from the ivory, allowing him to examine detained contraband and determine the elephant’s original population.


More than 85 percent of the savanna elephant ivory seized between 2006 and 2014 was traced to East Africa, mainly from the Selous Game Reserve in southeastern Tanzania and the Niassa Reserve in adjacent northern Mozambique. In 2011 the savanna elephant hotspot began shifting northward, from southeastern Tanzania toward the Ruaha National Park and Rungwa Game Reserve in the country’s center, gradually creeping northward toward Kenya.


  • DNA is a molecule that carries most of the genetic instructions used in the development, functioning and reproduction of all known living organisms and many viuses.
  • DNA is a nucleic acid; alongside proteins and carbohydrates, nucleic acids compose the three major macromolecules essential for all known forms of life.
  • Elephants are large mammals of the family Elephantidae and the order Proboscides. Two species are traditionally recognised, the African Elephant (Loxodonta africana) and Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus).
  • Elephants are herbivorous and can be found in different habitats including Savvannah, forests, deserts and marshes. They prefer to stay near water. They are considered to be Keystones due to their impact on their environments

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