WHY ARE ELEPHANTS IN PERIL? WHY YOU SHOULD CARE.

Elephants face many human-caused and created threats to their existence. According to the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, these threats have decimated elephant populations in Africa by an alarming 70% since 1979. They include:

  • Poaching for Ivory
  • Trophy Hunting
  • Enslavement/Entertainment
  • Rapidly Dwindling Habitats
  • Climate Change
  • Human-Elephant Conflict

Elephants continue to suffer in captivity – they are stolen from their families. They are put through torture to submit to humans. Elephants are transported in extreme confinement, chained, and forced to perform and give rides to humans. Their lives are full of pain and loneliness.

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Why Massachusetts for Elephants?

The Ivory Market

    • Massachusetts ranks 4th in ivory consumption in the US.
    • Despite a federal ban on commercial trade of ivory in 2016, Massachusetts is facilitating an abundant intrastate ivory market through sales of undocumented ivory.
    • A 2017 report on the elephant ivory market highlighted the Boston area, due to its many antique stores, markets and auction houses which sold ivory.
    • The Nantucket Lightship Basket industry and Nantucket scrimshanders have turned to carving raw ivory for scrimshaw decorations since the outlawing of whaling in 1971.
    • Antique dealers, scrimshaw carvers, and Lightship Basket manufacturers actively lobby MA State Representatives to keep the ivory trade alive. View article by clicking here.
    • There is currently a bill before the MA legislature to ban the sale and use of new ivory and rhino horn in the Commonwealth: (S.519).

The Elephant ‘Entertainment’ Industry

  • Elephants continue to be exploited for entertainment in the state; Massachusetts has yet to pass any statewide legislation prohibiting the use of elephants and exotic animals in circuses and traveling shows.
  • In 2019, Buelah and Karen, two of three elephants owned by R.W. Commerford and Sons, a circus and traveling show company operating in Massachusetts under the name Commerford Zoo, died after decades of being forced to travel in trailers, perform, and carry up to 5 human riders. Efforts are ongoing to free the third elephant, Minnie, to one of the US’s two accredited elephant sanctuaries. View full article by clicking here.
  • There is currently a bill before the MA legislature to prohibit the use of exotic animals in traveling shows: (S.2197, S.2189/ H.3245): An Act Relative To The Use Of Elephants, Big Cats, Primates, Giraffes, And Bears in Traveling Exhibits And Shows. Please click here to take action to help pass this important animal welfare legislation.
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Take Action!

Two bills have been refiled: S.519—An Act Relative to Elephant Ivory and Rhinoceros Horn Trafficking, and S.2189/S.2197/H.3245—An Act Relative to the Use of Elephants, Big Cats, Primates, Giraffes, and Bears in Traveling Shows.

These are the same bills that have been filed in several previous legislative sessions. S.519 would ban the sale of elephant ivory and rhino horn in Massachusetts, and S.2189/S.2197/H.3245 would outlaw the
use of exotic animals in traveling shows and exhibits statewide.

Tune in to learn how you can help pass the Ban on Ivory and Rhino Horn Sales in MA And Pass the Bill to Ban Elephants and other Exotic Animals in Circuses and Traveling Shows in MA

Massachusetts: Say No to Ivory and Rhino Horn Trafficking

Please take action by asking legislators to support passage of these important protections for elephants here in the Commonwealth:

Petition your State Senator and your State Representative to enact Senate Bill S.519.
The objectives of these bills are to:
  • Prohibit the ivory and rhino horn trade in Massachusetts.
  • Prevent ivory traffickers from exploiting Federal loopholes and the mixing of illegal ivory with legal sales.
The purpose of these bills is not to:
  • Criminalize possession of ivory currently owned by Massachusetts residents or prohibit inheritance or noncommercial gifts.

Find out more about S.519, the ivory ban bill, by clicking on the link below:

Click Here

Find your state legislators here: Click Here!

Phone them both to let them know you support these bills – and follow up your action with quick written emails to both.

Take further action:

S.519 is now being discussed in the Joint Committee on Environment and Natural Resources. Call or email the committee chairs and ask them to move this bill favorably out of committee.

Click Here

Massachusetts: Say no to the use of elephants in traveling shows

Petition your State Senator and your State Representative to enact S.2189/S.2197/H.3245
The objectives of these bills are to:
  • Prohibit the use of elephants in traveling animal acts.
Find out more about S.2189/S.2197/H.3245, the circus ban bill,
by clicking on the link below:
Click Here!

 

Find your state legislators here: Click Here!

 

Take action by asking legislators to support passage of these important protections for elephants and other exotic animals here in the Commonwealth via the link below:
Click Here!


Phone them both to let them know you support these bills - and follow up your action with quick written emails to both.

 

Take further action: S.2189/S.2197/H.3245 is now being discussed in the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts, Cultural Development. Call or email the committee chairs and ask them to move this bill favorably out of committee:
Click Here!

 

Join our Movement for Elephants

  • Petition for legislation that protects global elephant populations from the ivory trade
  • Support efforts to free elephants in captivity
  • Learn about the role that the U.S., and Massachusetts specifically, play in the ivory trade
  • Educate yourself and others on the threats facing elephants both nationally and internationally