“Their intelligence. Elephants understand that ivory is the reason they’re being killed. There are very, very few big bulls with big ivory left in the world, and the two or three still in Tsavo have become nocturnal. I’ve seen a bull with big tusks by the road turn his back, trying to hide the ivory.”
What’s the biggest misconception people have about elephants?
Daphne Sheldrick, interview in TIME Magazine, June 4, 2012
This makes me so sad.
Just like humans are either left or right handed, elephants have a dominant tusk that’s usually shorter than the other from being worn away. Now, elephants are purposefully grinding their tusks against trees and rocks to wear them out and shorten them. Many aren’t being born with long tusks or even tusks at all because those who survive maintain the genes that make their tusks virtually nonexistent. So through evolution and poaching, elephants are slowly losing their tusks all together.