This article is over 5 years old and may contain outdated information.


Video of the Week: Rhinoceros talks back in new anti-poaching PSA

The video is the latest in a campaign by the African Wildlife Foundation to raise awareness of the illegal wildlife trade

  • Published Sep 15, 2017
  • Updated Apr 06, 2023
  • 283 words
  • 2 minutes
Expand Image

The world’s wildlife is in decline.

In Canada alone, half of all vertebrate species have seen their populations shrink since 1970, according to a study recently released by the World Wildlife Fund. Habitat loss, pollution, and the impacts of climate change are all well-known threats to biodiversity, but in the September/October issue of Canadian Geographic, writer Leslie Anthony exposes the shadowy world of poaching and the illegal wildlife trade.

In “Biodiversity Apocalypse,” Anthony recounts his first direct experience with a global industry that generates an estimated $175 billion each year through the sale of animals and animal byproducts. Hiking alone one evening while on assignment in northern Vietnam in the 1980s, Anthony stumbled across a group of poachers and their quarry of gibbons and sun bears — both critically endangered species. What he didn’t realize at the time was that Canada, too, is a hotbed of illegal wildlife trading. 

Anthony is not alone in wanting to shed light on this international criminal enterprise; this week, the African Wildlife Foundation released a new PSA, part of their “Say No” series. In it, a talking rhinoceros explains that the killing of rhinos will only stop when there is no longer a market for their horns, which are prized in some areas as decorations and for their supposed medicinal properties. The PSA was created in partnership with WildAid, which recently launched its own anti-wildlife trade campaign starring Kung Fu legend Jackie Chan.

Watch the video below and grab a copy of our September/October issue—on newsstands now—to read Anthony’s story. 


Are you passionate about Canadian geography?

You can support Canadian Geographic in 3 ways:

Related Content

illegal wildlife trade, elephant foot, ivory, biodiversity


The illegal wildlife trade is a biodiversity apocalypse

An estimated annual $175-billion business, the illegal trade in wildlife is the world’s fourth-largest criminal enterprise. It stands to radically alter the animal kingdom.

  • 3405 words
  • 14 minutes
A grizzly bear lies dead on the side of the road


Animal crossing: Reconnecting North America’s most important wildlife corridor

This past summer an ambitious wildlife under/overpass system broke ground in B.C. on a deadly stretch of highway just west of the Alberta border. Here’s how it happened.

  • 3625 words
  • 15 minutes


The untold story of the Hudson’s Bay Company

A look back at the early years of the 350-year-old institution that once claimed a vast portion of the globe

  • 4473 words
  • 18 minutes


Do not disturb: Practicing ethical wildlife photography

Wildlife photographers on the thrill of the chase  — and the importance of setting ethical guidelines 

  • 2849 words
  • 12 minutes