It was proposed that the ‘anthropause’ (reduced mobility during the pandemic) would highlight the human impact on the natural world and reveal useful insight into human-animal interactions. There were multiple accounts of unusual wildlife encounters, with dolphins inhabiting a harbour of Trieste, Italy, and sightings of pumas strolling through the streets of Santiago, Chile.
However since the pandemic began, Asia and South America have reported dwindling numbers of people entering national parks and billions of dollars lost in ecotourism. This has led to an increase in poaching due to the mass redundancy of park rangers and regulation enforcement lacking. Specifically in India, the Mayurjharna Elephant Reserve Project had to be abandoned. This led to elephants entering villages, damaging crops and homes, and five elephants killed. Furthermore, this region recorded its first case of ivory poaching in years.