Asheboro, NC – The North Carolina Zoo’s planned burning of elephant ivory and rhino horns, scheduled for 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 12, has been postponed.

Legal issues concerning the destruction of state property are being examined. While the zoo does not put a value on the ivory and horns, the artifacts are state property and thus subject to applicable state law.

By destroying the elephant ivory and rhino horns in its possession, the zoo is seeking to raise awareness of a global crisis within the animal community. Last year more than 30,000 elephants and 1,000 rhinos were killed and their increasingly valuable ivory and horns sold illegally.

“We remain fully committed to doing our part to demonstrate that these animal parts should be worthless,” said Dr. David Jones, the zoo’s director. “But we must do so in a responsible manner and in adhering to all manners of state law with regard to their destruction.”  

The North Carolina Zoo is an agency of the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, John E. Skvarla, III, Secretary; Pat McCrory, Governor.