HARARE, Nov 12 (NNN-AGENCIES) – At least 115 elephants died, at the country’s largest game reserve, since Sept this year, due to shortage of food and water.
Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) spokesperson, Tinashe Farawo said, water reservoirs were drying up, in the Hwange National Park, following a drought this year, the state-controlled Herald newspaper reported.
Farawo said, 105 elephants died between Sept and Oct, in the vast game reserve, while 10 more died, since the beginning of this month. He said, the number of deaths recorded so far could be higher.
Hwange National Park is located in the dry western region of the country, and has the biggest population of elephants in the country.
He said, ZimParks was currently sinking boreholes as deep as 400 metres, to try to get to the water table.
“This is costly and we are battling to cope,” he lamented.
He also added that the food and water shortages in the country’s national parks were worsening human-wildlife conflict, as animals were escaping from parks to communal lands in search of scarce resources.
He said, ZimParks desperately needs investment in water sources, to prevent deaths of wildlife and ultimately protect humans from animals.
With more than 84,000 elephants against a carrying capacity of around 56,000, Zimbabwe is the second biggest home to elephants in the word, after neighbouring Botswana.– NNN-AGENCIES