The African elephant is one of the most majestic animals in the world. These gentle giants are among the most emotional and intelligent creatures on the planet, yet, they are rarely given the respect and protection that they deserve.

Tragically, it is estimated that one elephant is slaughtered for their ivory tusks every 15 minutes. That’s 90 elephants a DAY, lost for the sake of making frivolous trinkets, jewelry, and statues. If this rate of poaching continues, some scientists believe that African elephants will be extinct from the wild within the next 20 years.

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Sadly, when we lose the elephant, we will lose so much more than just this iconic species. These incredible animals play a critical role in their ecosystem as the “architects” of the landscape. Elephants are responsible for maintaining short grasslands and have been linked to the growth of trees. They make the African landscape hospitable for other, smaller creatures and humans alike – in many ways, if the elephant goes extinct, humans will be directly threatened as well.

So, in honor of this Endangered Species Day, share this video and what you have learned about the African elephant to inspire others to stand up for the elephant! We all have the power to save the elephant by putting an end to the illegal ivory trade by refusing to purchase ivory items. When the buying stops, the killing stops – no trinket is worth the loss of an elephant.