PerspectiveConservation

Can DNA foil the poachers?

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Science  03 Jul 2015:
Vol. 349, Issue 6243, pp. 34-35
DOI: 10.1126/science.aac6301

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Summary

Protecting wildlife helps to sustain ecosystems and the services they provide, but beyond that, wildlife species have an intrinsic value. It is hard to imagine a world without iconic species such as the African elephant. However, elephants carry with them an appendage of great commercial value: their tusks. Conservation efforts struggle to keep pace with illegal takes by poachers fueled by the promise of great financial gain. On page 84 in this issue, Wasser et al. (1) provide an example of how modern technologies are making life harder for the poachers.