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Study sounds alarm for Africa’s slow-breeding forest elephants

General September 1, 2016

The population of Central Africa's forest elephants has been decimated by illegal hunting, with an estimated 65 percent decline between 2002 and 2013, researchers sayEven without poachers, Central Africa's forest elephants would need almost a century to get their numbers back up to 2002 levels, said a study Wednesday that pried into the elusive creatures' slow-breeding ways. Roaming the tropical forests of Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon and Democratic Republic of Congo, the tusker sub-species is thought to have numbered about one to two million at its peak, study co-author George Wittemyer of Colorado State University told AFP. Forest elephants are smaller than savannah elephants — the other, much better studied, African sub-species.

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