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Drought impacts National Parks

Drought impacts National Parks

Marthina Mutanga
THE disastrous drought has started to show its impact on National Parks, game parks and other conservation areas such as conservancies and it is most visible when conflict between humans and wildlife occurs.

Pictured: Animals at a waterhole in the Etosha National Park for illustrative purposes only. Photo: Contributed

Romeo Muyunda Public Relation officer of The Ministry of Environment and Tourism said the cumulative rainfall performance was below normal in all the regions of the country and the situation has had a negative impact in terms of the lack of water and poor grazing for wild animals.
The drought situation in National Parks and Game Parks also has implications to animals leaving such parks and causing human wildlife conflict in rural communities and on farms near conservation areas.
Muyunda said the lack of food and water is also impacting on the condition of wild animals in conservation areas. Most of the animals are in a fair to poor condition.
He said to mitigate the effect water needs to be provided for wildlife while animal numbers in some areas needs to be reduced.
“We will address drought related impacts in other ways but definitely not through trophy hunting,” Muyunda said.
The ministry intends to address the impact of drought through the live sale of game, the contribution to the wildlife breeding schemes, the shooting and sale, culling of surplus game, the translocation of game to other parks which are less affected and provision of water by drilling boreholes at water points as well as the rehabilitation of existing holes.

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