Think Twice

Before Buying Wildlife Souvenirs




Every year customs officers seize thousands of dead wildlife souvenirs from returning travelers, many from endangered and threatened species. Disappearing animals, from elephants to marine turtles, are at risk. Purchased from resorts, airports, boutiques and markets that openly sell illegal and questionable animal products, tourists are unaware they’ve done anything wrong.

Recent investigation by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in South Africa, a popular holiday destination, spotlights the challenge. Researchers found a still thriving trade in ivory carvings, porcupine quills and shark teeth.

Alternatively, purchasing handicraft mementoes that both benefit indigenous peoples and save local animals make exotic gifts twice as nice. All the animals send their thanks.


Sign a petition on behalf of the animals at www.IFAW.org, search “Wildlife Pledge.”

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Touch Nature

Farm Stay USA has created a directory of farms that welcome visitors—an ideal way for urbanites to reconnect with their food sources and support local, family farms.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags