Veterinarian Dag Goering checks out a baby elephant.

Presentation sheds light on elephant poaching

Activists in the world of anti-poaching are coming to Golden to discuss their elephant conservation work.

A couple from Victoria, B.C. have travelled the world over, fighting for their cause of protecting elephants from poachers.

Veterinarian Dag Goering and his wife, author Maria Coffey are coming to Golden on April 21 to give a multi-media presentation about their elephant conservation and welfare work.

“Poaching is devastating wild elephant populations, and their habitat is

continually shrinking due to logging, encroachment by agriculture and global

warming,” said Coffey.

The presentation will discuss the couple’s journey into the world of elephants, their elephant conservation work in Asia and Africa, and the Hidden Places trips that help fund their work.

Hidden Places Travel is Goering and Coffey’s travel agency that arranges unique trips and tours around the world. Two per cent of all Hidden Places trips goes to their elephant conservation projects.

In 2007, Goering was volunteering in India, and a local vet asked him to examine a new baby elephant, the first born in captivity there for more than 70 years.

“It’s mother suddenly grabbed me with her trunk, pulled me close and stared me in the eye,” said Goering. “It was a magical moment. An epiphany.”

Elephants are a keystone species say Coffey and Goering. They are essential in maintaining suitable habitats in forest and savannah ecosystems for many other species. By protecting elephants and their habitat we are also protecting countless other species who share the same living space.

Coffey and Goering will be at the St. Andrews United Church on Saturday April 21 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., telling the audience what they have seen first hand about the issues facing wild and captive elephants, and examples of their conservation work.

Admission will be by donation to the Anti-Poaching Project. The presentation contains some graphic images of poaching, therefor it is suitable for those age 12 and over.