New Delhi: Botswana is home to Africa’s one-third population of elephants and has now witnessed a bizarre turn of events where more than 350 elephants were found dead under mysterious circumstances in the Okavango Delta.
It has been termed as a ‘conservation disaster’ by the experts and the local government has also been unable to test the samples from dead bodies due to logistical difficulties arising from the coronavirus pandemic.
“This is a mass die-off on a level that hasn’t been seen in a very, very long time. Outside of drought, I don’t know of a die-off that has been this significant,” said Dr. Niall McCann, the director of conservation at UK-based charity National Park Rescue.
Over the past few years, the number of elephants in Africa has dropped by 30 per cent following rampant poaching, according to multiple surveys conducted by Elephants Without Borders
Botswana is home to almost 1.3 lakh elephants and there are about 15,000 elephants only in the Okavango Delta. Also, in a recent development, the government has also lifted a ban on big-game hunting in the country, allowing sport hunters to kill elephants.