Ivory ban’s effect on musicians

Posted on: April 25, 2014

On Thursday’s (4/24) WQXR blog (New York City), Brian Wise reports, “New Federal rules aimed at protecting Africa’s endangered elephants are sending shock waves through parts of the music world. Under new regulations that began to take effect in February, musical instruments that have even the smallest amount of ivory are banned from entering the U.S. unless it can be proved that they were purchased before 1976. That includes any violin bows with a small piece of ivory at the tip, and also some bassoon bells and piano keys.… The ruling came in response to a dramatic increase in elephant poaching in Africa. Some 30,000 elephants per year, over the last several years, have been slaughtered to supply the global demand for ivory, said Craig Hoover, who heads the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) wildlife trade and conservation branch.… Hoover says that the USFWS is currently gathering feedback from musicians’ trade groups, including the American Federation of Musicians and the League of American Orchestras. Potential amendments to the rules could start to take shape this summer.” The article accompanies a podcast discussion among WQXR host Naomi Lewis, bowmaker Yung Chin, and Craig Hoover of USFWS.

Posted April 25, 2014