Jumbo herds roam Musese, Nzinze areas (Namibia)


The Namibian

Date Published

An estimated 100?strong elephant herd is roaming the Musese and Nzinze areas in the Kavango West region, adding to the increasing human?wildlife conflict there.

This was announced by environment and tourism minister, Pohamba Shifeta during a recent media conference in Windhoek.

He said these elephants are suspected to have either come from Angola or they are sub?populations of herds found around the Mangetti cattle ranch, Mangetti National Park and Khaudum National Park.

The minister said staff from the ministry are in the area to monitor the movement of the elephants and assist communities and farmers in preventing damage to crops and other property.

Shifeta said minor damage to crops had been reported in that area and one elephant considered a problem animal was put down by a professional hunter recently.

He said the animal will be sold for N$70 000, with N$20 000 of the proceeds being paid to the Game Products Trust Fund under his ministry and N$50 000 to the communities through the Kavango West Regional Council, since they do not have a conservancy in their area.

Shifeta noted that another elephant was allegedly shot and killed by the service provider for the Musese Green Scheme Irrigation Project under questionable circumstances.

The service provider did not get permission and a case of illegal hunting of specially protected game was opened and the case referred to the prosecutor general Martha Imalwa for a decision.

The minister added that two elephants have also been collared in Kavango West to monitor their movement.

“With the assistance of the Namibian Defence Force, an aerial assessment has been conducted to determine the number of these elephants and their sub?populations for easy monitoring and management,” he said.

Human?wildlife conflict has been intensifying, with four people having lost their lives in Namibia over the past five months due to the problem, said Shifeta.

A total of 109 livestock were killed by wild animals and 218 hectares of crops were destroyed during the same period.

In 2015, 16 people died and 554 cases of livestock deaths were reported. A total of 222 hectares of crops were destroyed by wild animals.