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TrekSta Partners with Epicocity Project on Conservation Documentary
Film Documentary Aims to Stifle Elephant Poaching for Ivory
Moscow, Idaho (Feb. 15th, 2011) â€“ TrekSta, a leading manufacturer of technical outdoor footwear, and The Epicocity Project, a team of renowned explorers and dedicated conservationists, are joining forces on the Elephant Ivory Project, in an effort to hamper the illegal killing of elephants in Africa. The resulting data and documentary film will capture the hard science behind pinpointing elephant poaching, while educating the public with the goal of curbing demand in the U.S. â€“ the world's second largest consumer.
The world's elephant population is increasingly endangered due the growing price and demand for ivory. In 2010, the growing demand for ivory led to the slaughter of 8% of Africa's elephant population or over 100 elephants every day - a rate that, if sustained, could lead to extinction in the wild in just ten years.
The Center for Conservation Biology has developed a DNA map of African elephant populations, enabling researchers to pinpoint the origin of ivory seized in illegal shipments around the world. Identifying smugglers' trade routes and poaching hot spots allows anti-poaching resources and patrols to be allocated and dispatched effectively.
However, a blank spot exists in the DNA map over the Democratic Republic of Congo, thought to be a significant source of ivory. Due to its sheer remoteness and war torn instability, DNA samples of Conglese elephant populations don't yet exist. This month, the Epicocity Crew will set out in collaboration with Dr. Samuel Wasser, a pioneering conservation biologist, to map what the team surmises to be the most heavily trafficked elephant poaching hot spots in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Wasser will complete the map by comparing DNA sampled from ivory seizures to DNA from elephant populations in the Congo, in an effort to assist and direct law enforcement.
â€œWe're headed to an extremely remote region in one of the world's more dangerous countries,â€ said expedition leader Trip Jennings. â€œOur gear has to get us in, out, and work seamlessly in areas where well-armed poachers know the area better than we do, and we're trusting TrekSta to keep us on the move. In addition to the gear, it's the support of companies like TrekSta that make it possible to complete one of our most challenging and rewarding projects yet, and one that we hope will affect real change.â€
â€œWe're happy that we can support the team at EP films not just with footwear, but with the means to tackle and expose some of our planet's most important conservation issues,â€ said David Blue, Marketing Director for TrekSta USA. â€œTeaming up with EP films is one way we can support the preservation of our wild places and their increasingly fragile ecosystems. We're looking forward to seeing the results of their work in another successful, compelling film.â€
Founded in 1988, TrekSta is a leading manufacturer of technical outdoor footwear, now sold in more than 20 countries around the world. With a goal of advancing the marketplace by improving footwear technology, the company has revolutionized the way shoes fit and feel by creating the pioneering NestFIT system, which mirrors the actual contours of the human foot for total comfort, freedom and support. Combining technical innovations like NestFIT and their proprietary total-traction outsoles with cutting-edge materials and impeccable craftsmanship, TrekSta continually redefines what shoes, boots and sandals â€“ and those who wear them â€“ can do. For more information about TrekSta, visit http://www.TrekStausa.com.
About Epicocity Project
The Epicocity Project is a group of renowned adventurers and award winning media professionals committed to protecting wild places and wild animals. The EP team descended the highest volume rapids in the world to complete the first successful descent of the Lower Congo Rapids, bringing back data for the USGS and National Geographic. One year later, the EP team produced a documentary which helped bring about a monumental conservation success: protecting the Flathead River from open pit coal mining and gas extraction. EP's portfolio includes film documentary work for National Geographic, National Geographic Explorer, PBS, Save Our Wild Salmon, and more. For more information about the Epicocity Project, visit http://www.epfilms.tv.