Zim runs out of ivory storage space

via Zim runs out of ivory storage space | The Herald December 23, 2014

Zimbabwe has run out of storage space for ivory and rhino horns owing to the US-imposed ban on the importation of elephant trophy from Zimbabwe. The country, which is also holding on to 70 tonnes of ivory and five tonnes of rhino horns is, however, considering exporting live animals to alternative markets such as Asia, France, United Arab Emirates and Europe.

The move by the USA has discouraged most trophy hunters from visiting Zimbabwe who have since diverted to other routes such as Botswana.

Speaking during a media tour of Hwange National Park last week, National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority Acting director general, Mr Geoffreys Matipano said American citizens could hunt in Zimbabwe but were not allowed to take the trophies to the USA, which means there is no motivation for the hunters to come to Zimbabwe. The US move was not only crippling the economy but was posing a threat to the environment.

Mr Matipano said Hwange National Park had an elephant population of 45 000 when the carrying capacity was 14 000. “The rhino horn stocks are under threat from weevils and this will result in the deterioration of the quality and value of the resource,” he said.

He said the park was facing challenges of poaching, inadequate seed money for research, fire management and transport such as boats and planes.

The park is struggling to provide enough water for the wildlife and has established artificial sources that are expensive. “We have been selling elephant tusks to local people involved in carving but the revenue is small. Of late the carvers have been complaining of low business and we reviewed our prices downwards.

“Most trophy hunters used to come from America and for a single trophy, the hunter could pay above US$30 000,” he said.

Hwange National Park area manager, Mr Trumber Jura, said the park depends on artificial water supplies for eight months. He said they use diesel engines to pump the water. “We have more than 80 boreholes and 49 are pumped at the same time. We require 500 litres of diesel and $800 to pump water per borehole per month,” he said.

Mr Jura said the park was also faced with shortage of manpower.

The park relies on one ranger per 100 square kilometre instead of 20 square kilometres. Hwange National Park ecologist, Mr Tinaapi Madiri said the large population of elephants has resulted in the increase in costs for conservation, crop destruction for communities, human injuries and loss of lives as well as damage to infrastructure.

Zimbabwe is a member of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), an international agreement between governments.

Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.

Under CITES, Zimbabwe is allowed a once-off sale in ivory. The country will forward a proposal to sell again ivory after its 2009 sale in 2017.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 14
  • comment-avatar
    Doris 6 years ago

    Yea, yea, yea…….what a crock. Just wanna sell them as fast as possible.

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    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    What a load of Bull , plenty of space in all the abandoned derelict factories , safari lodges , schools , hospitals I could go on and on. Wait until there’s nothing left to sell they will turn to the masses and sell them on mass to the Chinese as slave labour sighting overcrowding mark my words.

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    Gamuchirai 6 years ago

    Plenty space Mr DG…just burn the damn stuff if you want to reduce poaching. Your Chinese friends are no longer interested in buying smuggled stuff so you are stuck with excess stock

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    Reverend 6 years ago

    If maybe you saw the latest elephant count you will notice that in some areas we have huge increases in the pachyderm and areas nearer our borders with Zambia a significant decrease in numbers. Hwange and gonarezhou and surrounding areas are showing huge numbers with Hwange at about 50,000 head and Gonnas I recall has doubled to 16 – 18,000.
    The USA fish and wild life banned the import of sport hunted ivory which has caused huge ripple effects in the hunting industry with operators having to downsize or close down their private anti poaching units that have worked alongside parks for years. This decision from USF&WL was stupid to say the least and only set down because the press said that 300 elephants were poisoned in Hwange park which is actually double the actual number.
    Well regardless, ellies die and are shot and yes I know that Parks is fraught with corruption but if we could sell that ivory to some country through cities and the money be put through the Zimbabwe wildlife society to ensure its use in the wild life industry it would be a very useful injection of cash to the betterment of the countries game.
    Read article from Ron Thomson to US Fish & wild life…its worth the read, though quite long.

  • comment-avatar

    There is no hunting in Botswana!!

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    Reverend , the hunting argument theoretically is perfect and can not be argued against. It works in first world countries where parks departments and the general population including hunters have the well being of the natural resources at heart. The problem with third world countries is your average parks employee has zero concern for wildlife to them it’s just a job and then you have crooked politicians as well as crooked safari operators and hunters and a general population of people who don’t really give a sh*t hence the hunting is abused and hunters argue they are doing it for the love of wildlife , what a crock of sh*t

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    Read Ron Thompson’s report , it belongs in the 50’s

  • comment-avatar
    Reverend 6 years ago

    The Mind Boggles, Sadly you are dead right about 3rd world African countries, but for goodness sake let us who do care NOT GIVE UP! There are people in this country who do give a **** and if we can just acknowledge that and support the societies and NGO’s that can make a difference then we can have the situation at least pointing in the right direction so if things do come right from this zanoid fiasco we at least do not have to pick up all the pieces as we will have a base to work from.
    Most Zimbabwean operators are sound businessmen, but it is the unscrupulous South African operators that are working with the corrupt Parks officials that need the boot, and it cant come soon enough.
    Rons report has much relevance to the situation that exists today, and though you bring it all down to a “Crock of ****” you need to have hope! Without hope we are less than useless. Have “HOPE” friend, and we pray it all works out.

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    Reverend I fear you are sorely mistaken in your beliefs , I would love to meet you for a few beers one day and perhaps you could introduce me to these genuine safari operators who do it for the love of the wild??? True hunters who usually love the wild are usually very poor business men , good businessmen become good operators and that’s what they are “businessmen” not conservationists . The two do not mix I have first hand experience , for the good of African wildlife for godsakes stop hunting it’s criminal, clever whitemen corrupting poor blackmen and killing is what it amounts to. Irrelevant of where they come from , your assumption that they all come from SA shows your ignorance. Ron Thompson was good in is day but his day has passed , people once believed the world was flat!!!! Times and opinions and knowledge move on , Reverend do you still believe the world to be flat????

    • comment-avatar
      Reverend 6 years ago

      LOL….what if I did believe the world is flat! It would not change our difference of opinion, and sadly I see there is a lot of anger and bitterness in your heart, and clearly being an anti hunter puts us in different pastures.
      Firstly a good businessman who is a safari operator is naturally a conservationist…go figure.
      The best way to destroy wild life is to stop hunting…Look at Kenya. Hunters are far better conservationists than anti hunters because anti hunters target the hunters and hunters target the conservation of wild life.
      In regard to the “clever white men corrupting the poor black man” is a racist cop out and you know it. The Black operators all have white men running their operations because it is a white based industry serving 99% white customers….like it or not!
      It seems that you do not know too much about the good the bad and the ugly in the safari industry, and while there are some bad zim operators, I can assure you that every South African operator hunting in this country is out to make what he can and will do what it takes to make a buck. You do not even know what damage the Groenewalds of Out of Africa did in this country, and the rest of them now!
      I will have a beer shandy when we meet,half Castle light and a Sprite. I will bring some great safari operators with me who are struggling to help the wildlife and guys who against all odds have hope!
      Blessings friend and may the Lord bless you and your family with a wonderful Christmas and a 2015 filled with HOPE.
      Remember Jesus is the reason for the season.

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    It’s all about economics , find one safari operator who will undershoot his quota , all will shoot the quota plus more to the max as they have to pay whether they shoot them or not , go and look at the Omay. When was the last time you were in Kenya?? last time I was there I saw a hell of a lot more than one sees in the Dande today?? Remember Charara/Makuti ?? Seen the quality of lions that come out of Zim in the last ten years?? Elephant trophy size?? You mentioned the Zambians earlier , go down to G Camp now , look at the Zambain side and look at Zim , please you don’t need to be a genius to see what over hunting has done and will continue to do. if we could prove it I would bet you over 80% of PH’s have at some stage in their career taken/given bribes. As I said earlier theoretically it’s a brilliant concept , go and look at Muzarabani today and tell me CAMPFIRE is a roaring (excuse the pun) success.

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    Sorry and believe me I know exactly who and what Dawie Groenewald is.

  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 6 years ago

    Sorry and believe me I know exactly who Dawie Groenewald is and what he is and I also know some very dedicated SA hunters but the industry is rotten to the core and must stop

  • comment-avatar
    Muzivi 6 years ago

    Do your research, hunting is banned in Botswana