They can be saved, however. Dan Hannan in London talks about “privatising” the elephant (and watch the video):
To us, elephants are cuddly. To Africans, they are dangerous neighbours that trample crops and villages. The best way to incentivise the protection of the herds is to allow local people to treat them as a renewable resource, selling their meat, hide and tusks while preserving their numbers. Property rights, in short, will ensure the preservation of natural resources.