There are several factors that can contribute to the wiping out of a species like disease, global warming and the deterioration of natural resources. But when it comes to the lives of these endangered animals, poachers are the biggest threat to their health, well-being and lives.
Poachers use gruesome methods according to the African Wildlife Fund, like Ak-47s, grenade launchers and night-vision goggles. They shoot these from low flying helicopters: “The vast majority of poaching is caused by organized crime syndicates that use high-powered technology and weaponry to track and kill many animals at once at once without being detected.
For mountain gorillas, it comes in the form of traps that these poachers may set for other animals. The mountain gorillas get caught in these traps and die from their inability to escape. Their babies are also seen as exotic pets, with the African Wildlife Fund reporting that “wildlife officials have observed a recent surge in trafficking of infant gorillas. They are sold for up to $40,000.” On the black market, these gorillas are prizes, but they need to stay in the wild where there’s less that 900 left in the entire world.
So, what is being done about these horrible people? Protecting wildlife, conserving land and educating the public are only some of the efforts that the AWF is doing, along with Gorilla Socks partner, the Dian Fossey Fund and its efforts to help gorillas. In the meantime, we can stop purchasing things made of ivory and really stop helping these evil people profit off of their dangerous and illegal living.