17, 2013)—“Battle for the Elephants,” a groundbreaking, new, one-hour special produced by National Geographic Television, explores the brutal slaughter of African elephants for their tusks, fueled largely by China’s demand for ivory. In Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, one of the world’s main ports for smuggled ivory, Hartley poses as an ivory buyer and uses hidden cameras to film poachers negotiating the sale of large quantities of tusks. Journalists Bryan Christy and Aidan Hartley take viewers undercover as they investigate the criminal network behind ivory’s supply and demand. The film tells the ultimate wildlife story — how the Earth’s most charismatic and majestic land animal today faces market forces driving the value of its tusks to levels once reserved for precious metals.In China, Christy explores the thriving industry of luxury goods made from ivory and the ancient cultural tradition of ivory carving.The International Fund for Animal Welfare estimates that 84 percent of the ivory sold in China is illegal.
By 1913, as the United States consumed more than 200 tons of ivory a year, only 10 million elephants remained.” An educational website developed by National Geographic and PBS will provide information about elephants and the illicit trade that is undermining their future.Funding for “Battle for the Elephants” is provided by David H.Hartley meets with Khamis Kagasheki, minister of natural resources in Tanzania, which stores the world’s largest stockpile of elephant tusks in the world — 90 metric tons.Kagasheki agrees to allow Hartley and the camera crew to take the first-ever footage of the vast warehouse that stores thousands of tusks, valued at million.Specific program information and updates for press are available at pbs.org/pressroom or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.