Poachers kill 44 animals at Vic Falls park

rhino2HARARE The Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit (VFAPU) said at least 44 animals were killed by poachers last year in the Victoria Falls National Park while more than 300 people were arrested for various crimes during the same period. (Pictured: The black Rhino Poached for its horn)<

A not-for-profit organisation formed more than a decade ago and dedicated to the preservation of wildlife in the Victoria Falls area, the unit said buffalos and impala were the main targets of poaching gangs, losing 12 animals each to the illegal hunters.

The poachers also killed two elephants, two spotted hyenas and eight warthogs, according to the VFAPU report for 2010 published last week.

The anti-poaching group also revealed that 443 snares were located and disarmed in the national park. At least 328 people were arrested within national park estate for crimes ranging from poaching, illegal mining, illegal tree-cutting, drug dealing and border jumping.

Poaching has become a problem in Zimbabwe in the past two years, with senior members of President Robert Mugabes Zanu (PF) party, the security forces and Chinese businesspeople being implicated in the illegal killing of animals in game reserves. A recent report by animal conservation group TRAFFIC showed that Zimbabwe and South Africa lost close to 190 rhinos to poachers in 2010, reaffirming the two southern Africa neighbours status as the epicentre of the world animal poaching crisis. The killings are allegedly fuelled by consumer markets for rhino horn in China and Vietnam where traditional medicines containing rhino horn are in high demand.

Post published in: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *