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Evo in the News

The evolution of tuskless elephants foils poachers, but at a cost

Between 1977 and 1992, a civil war in Mozambique killed over a million people, displaced five million more, and destroyed roads, schools, and hospitals.  It also killed a lot of elephants. Armies need money to fight, and ivory from elephant tusks was a way to get it. The protected elephant population in Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique was decimated by ivory poachers.  Before the war in 1972, the park was home to 2542 elephants. By the year 2000, that number had fallen to just 242. Now, recent research shows that poaching during this period caused rapid evolution in the elephant population, specifically, the rise of tuskless elephants.

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