Links to Coverage of the Census

African Elephant Numbers Plummet 30 Percent, Landmark Survey FindsNational Geographic, August 31, 2016.

An unprecedented census gives a sobering baseline for managing what’s left of Africa’s elephants.


Why Elephants Are Seeking Refuge in BotswanaBBC, August 31, 2016.

In seven years, 30% of Africa's elephants have disappeared. At the current rate of decline, half the continent's remaining pachyderms will be gone in just nine years. These are the headline findings from the first pan-African survey of savannah elephants, funded for $7m ( £5m) by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.

Historic Census Reveals the True Plight of Africa's Elephants, Mashable, August 31, 2016.

On Wednesday, the project released unprecedented data on African savanna elephants with the hope of informing conservation efforts. Over the past three years, GEC researchers have been collecting elephant population data from 18 countries in Africa in what is the first continent-wide aerial survey of African elephants.

Poaching Drives Huge 30% Decline in Africa's Savanna Elephants, The Guardian, August 31, 2016.

Ambitious Great Elephant Census finds nearly one-third of continent’s largest elephants were wiped out between 2007-14, largely due to poaching for ivory

There Are Far Fewer Elephants Than We Thought, Study ShowsCNN, August 31, 2016.

Before the GEC, total elephant numbers were largely guesswork. But over the past two years, 90 scientists and 286 crew have taken to the air above 18 African countries, flying the equivalent of the distance to the moon -- and a quarter of the way back -- in almost 10,000 hours.  

Poachers Kill 26 Elephants In Chobe National ParkTraveller 24, August 31, 2016.

Over the past decade, elephants have been retreating to Botswana as poaching in the other KAZA countries – Angola, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe, has escalated.

Counting Africa's Beleaguered Elephants: Massive Two-Year Census Finds Alarming DeclinesDaily Maverick, August 31, 2016.

The largest wildlife survey ever taken has delivered alarming data for the ongoing survival of elephants. The results should be taken as a major wake-up call. 

Largest Wildlife Census in History Makes Waves in ConservationNational Geographic, January 4, 2016. 

The full, data-driven story of Africa's savanna elephants is now taking shape. 

The Shocking Results of the Latest Census of Elephants in Tanzania: Audio InterviewRadio New Zealand, August 10, 2015.

The census is a two year aerial and land survey of Africa's savanna and bush elephants to assess the impact of poaching on the populations. The results for Tanzania show it has lost two thirds of its elephant population in just four years. 

Four Countries Acting as Safe Havens for African ElephantsNew Scientist, June 5, 2015

African elephants are crossing borders to escape lawlessness and fighting. They seem to be heading to Botswana, Gabon, Namibia and Uganda. These countries are bucking the trend of elephant declines elsewhere, due in part to their political stability, relatively sparse populations and low levels of government corruption.

The Great Elephant CensusZambezi Travller, April 24, 2015

Although some conservationists fear that the GEC will ultimately reveal a drop in the number of elephant, estimated in 2013 by the IUCN’s African Elephant Specialist Group at 433,999 spread across all 18 range states, there is positive news from parts of the continent.

African Elephants Could Be Extinct in Wild Within Decades, Experts Say The Guardian, Mar. 23, 3015

The Africa Elephant Summit being held in Botswana has heard of an alarming drop in numbers due to poaching.

New Doubts About Whether Elephants Can Survive South Sudan's Civil War National Geographic, Dec. 8, 2014 

The region's elephants, originally estimated after the war to number about 5,000, suffered extreme losses too—but amazingly some survived. As migratory animals, they fled into hideouts deep in the bush, where they holed up out of the line of fire. 

How Paul Allen's $7 Million and Big Data are Combating Africa's Elephant Crisis Mashable, Oct. 31, 2014.  

Africa's elephant population is in crisis. Some 30,000 were killed for their tusks in 2012, according to the International Fund for Animal Welfare, and by some estimates, the population could be decimated in a decade if poaching continues at this rate.

Conservationist Fears 'Unsustainable Rate Of Killing' After Legendary Elephant Falls To Poachers The Huffington Post, June 19, 2014

More than 20,000 elephants were poached in Africa in 2013, slaughtered for their prized tusks that can fetch more than $1,500 a pound

The Great Elephant Census to Start in February 2014, Animals Post, Dec. 24, 2013
Elephants Without Borders will conduct a two-year census project that will be the largest pan-Africa aerial survey since the 1970s and will provide new information critical to the species’ future survival.

Aerial Survey Will Be First to Count Most of Africa's Elephants, LiveScience, Dec. 19, 2013
Douglas Main sits down with Dr. Mike Chase to learn more about the myriad threats elephants face and how the Great Elephant Census will provide the foundational data needed for conservationists to aid them in their plight.

Microsoft Cofounder to Fund African Elephant Census, Sacred Seedlings, Dec. 18, 2013
Paul Allen has announced that he will fund a survey on Africa’s elephants to calculate how many actually remain, where they are found, what threats they face and whether their total population numbers are in fact increasing or decreasing.

Elephant Declines Vastly Underestimated, National Geographic, Dec. 16, 2013
The many threats African elephants face are detailed, as well as how the Great Elephant Census will provide foundational data to develop long-term conservation plans.

A Jumbo Week for Botswana, WeekendPost, Dec. 16, 2013
It was announced at the African Elephant Summit in Gaborone that Paul Allen will fund Elephants Without Borders to conduct a comprehensive census of Africa’s elephant population.

Elephants in African Cities Get the “Fast Track”, Corriere, Dec. 15, 2013
Paul Allen will fund a pan-African aerial survey to count the number of elephants in Africa, a census that will provide vital information to help conserve the species.

The Great Elephant Census: A Pan-Africa Survey of All the Continent’s Pachyderms, Nature World News, Dec. 13, 2013
An ambitious attempt to conduct a census of all of Africa's elephants is set to take flight in February. The Great Elephant Census will be the first pan-Africa census of elephants since the 1970s.

Can We Avert the End of Elephants?, Scientific American, Dec. 12, 2013
Within the next 10 years, Africa could lose 100,000 elephants to poachers if the slaughter for their ivory tusks continues at current rates. The Great Elephant Census will provide foundational data that help governments and NGOs form long-term conservation plans to save them.

Silence the Guns, The Sunday Standard, Dec. 9, 2013
Dr. Mike Chase sits down with The Sunday Reporter to discuss the Great Elephant Census. Aerial surveys of elephant numbers help conservationists develop management plans. In many countries, such surveys have not been flown in 10 years, making the census more imperative than ever.

Paul G. Allen Family Foundation Awards $7 Million for Elephant Survey, Philanthropy News Digest, Dec. 6, 2013
The Great Elephant Census is discussed as the largest pan-Africa aerial survey since the 1970s. It will provide data to form an essential baseline for ongoing elephant conservation efforts.

There’s an Elephant in the Room/Bush, Earth Times, Dec. 6, 2013
Elephants Without Borders is profiled for its plans to begin counting elephants to provide data to help form long-term conservation plans to increase elephant populations throughout Africa. 

New Grants From Foundations and Corporations, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, Dec. 5, 2013
The Great Elephant Census to gather an accurate assessment of the African elephant population is among the list of grants announced.

Africa’s First Aerial Elephant Census to Capture Falling Numbers, The Guardian, Dec. 4, 2013
Light aircraft will photograph virtually every elephant herd on the continent with a team of 46 scientists, starting this February.