The illegal hunting of lions in Africa has hit the headlines recently after the death of Cecil the lion. But big game hunters claiming trophies for sport is just a drop in the ocean compared with the illegal wildlife trade in threatened species.
Now the government has said £5 million will be made available to initiatives which tackle this "barbaric" trade. Here's all you need to know about where and why that money is being spent.
The government funding will go to schemes which strengthen local law enforcement against poachers, reduce demand for illegal products such as rhino horn and elephant ivory, and help communities develop sustainable livelihoods without targeting wildlife.
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Environment Department (Defra) minister Rory Stewart said: "This funding will help to reduce the supply of illegal wildlife products by supporting local communities to find new ways of earning a living and stopping poachers and criminal networks from controlling this barbaric trade.
"It will also support action to reduce demand for these products."
So why is the illegal wildlife trade such big business?
Picture shows Kenyan authorities burning elephant ivory in a bid to deter poachers.
The funding comes at a time when rhino horn is worth more than gold and fetches more on the black market than diamonds or cocaine.
Illicit wildlife trade and trafficking is one of the biggest illegal trades in the world, along with drugs, arms and human trafficking, and is worth more than £6 billion a year.
A poaching crisis in parts of Africa saw 20,000 elephants slaughtered in 2013 and 1,293 rhinos killed last year.
Experts are warning that all species of rhino could be extinct within a lifetime, while Central Africa has lost two-thirds of its population since 2004. In Asia, just 3,500 tigers remain in the wild.
Stewart said: "The illegal trade in animal products is putting some of our most iconic species like elephants, rhinos and tigers in severe danger.
"This is not just an environmental challenge: tackling this trade means tackling corruption, strengthening security and improving livelihoods.
The £5 million of funding going to new projects is part of the illegal wildlife trade challenge fund which was announced by Defra and the Department for International Development (DfID) in December 2013.
The scheme, which has Government funding totalling £13 million, has already supported 19 projects to protect endangered species such as rhinos, elephants and snow leopards.
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