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The United States has done it. The Philippines and China too. Even Hong Kong has said it will destroy some of its contraband ivory. But ahead of a conservation conference in London next month where world leaders will descend to seek a solution to wildlife crime, the debate about the future of stockpiles is set to heat up.

Donald Jr holds the severed tail of an elephant. Donald Sr, right, has questioned why his sons enjoy hunting so much

Donald Trump's sons in line of fire over African hunting trip

Tycoon father joins chorus of disapproval after photos emerge of pair with dead leopard and elephant

Campaigners want wild animals banned from performing circus stunts

Cameron accused of "smoke and mirrors" over circus animals ban

David Cameron was accused tonight of deploying “smoke and mirrors” to avoid imposing an immediate ban on wild animals in travelling circuses.

'Massive' increase in elephant poaching

Poachers have slaughtered at least 200 elephants in the past five weeks in a patch of Africa where they are more endangered than anywhere else on Earth, wildlife activists say.

Album: Speech Debelle, Freedom of Speech (Big Dada)

Having ridden out the ignominy of being the only Mercury Award winner not to significantly profit from that success, Speech Debelle shows some welcome signs of maturity on this follow-up.

We love: The net-a-porter sale - The Audit is a devoted fan of online luxury boutique net-a-porter.com, and never more so than when the word sale is thrown into the mix. With new reductions and added items there's a treasure trove of bargains to snap up. net-a-porter.com

The Fashion Audit: Net-a-porter, dung bags, the new Aesop and David Beckham

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An artist's impression of the line connecting London with Britain's second city

Green light for high-speed rail stalls car lobby

Go-ahead for Britain's first major railway project for more than a century will be matched by retreat on promises to motorists

Kenneth Williams

Dear Diary, What a New Year I've had...

Ian Irvine looks back at how some of the arts' most prolific journal keepers used to spend the turn of the year...eating lark and making love

Harriet Walker: 'I can carry only what fits in my mouth'

As we pat our collective gut and burp happily ahead of the festive season, it's time to think about the social power of sating oneself. Of really going for it at the dining table; of snuffling and troughing, lapping and ferreting; of not just being a "foodie" but of full-on "fooding". The whorls, splats and piles on your plate represent your lifestyle, your emotions, your relationships, like anxious tea leaves crawling up the side of a cup to be read.

The Artist of Disappearance, By Anita Desai

Three windows of opportunity are going, going...gone

Elephant polo protesters win day

An elephant polo match has been cancelled in the northern city of Jaipur after animal rights activists objected. The group, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, called it "a victory for the elephants."

Woolly mammoth calf fossil? No, just a wayward walrus

There was more than a ripple of excitement in the scientific community yesterday as news spread that a reindeer herder in an isolated part of northern Siberia had found a perfectly preserved, fossilised woolly mammoth calf.

Scientists discover genetic key to Elephant Man's disfigurement

A century after the death of the Elephant Man, whose hideous disfigurement turned him into a medical curiosity, scientists believe they may have solved the puzzle of what caused his condition.

Charles Nevin: A legend in my own lunchtime

Start the week... Skipping lunch, I note from research, can lead to "slow-down mode" and "exhaustion" by Thursday

Electric cables kill three elephants

three elephants were electrocuted in a wildlife sanctuary in northern India after they uprooted a utility pole and became caught in its 10,000-volt wires.

The Elephant's Journey, By José Saramago (trs Margaret Jull Costa)

A gift that has kept on giving
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The ecological reconstruction of Ikrandraco avatar is shown in this illustration courtesy of Chuang Zhao. Scientists on September 11, 2014 announced the discovery of fossils in China of a type of flying reptile called a pterosaur that lived 120 millions years ago and so closely resembled those creatures from the 2009 film, Avatar that they named it after them.
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