By Apolinari Tario
Not only guns and armed rangers needed to stop the chronic poaching of elephants and rhinos in Africa, but a good gesture and friendliness between local communities and wildlife could be a strong weapon that would help to protect wildlife in the continent.
Poaching of wild animals is currently endangering African big mammals including elephants and rhinos, counted among the Big Five which every tourist visiting this continent would like see.
In East Africa, the Big Five is made up of the elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo and leopard.
But, conservationists across this continent fear to see the Big Five disappearing. Escalating poaching of elephants and rhinos, similarly, trophy hunting of lions, leopards and buffaloes are all, running to decimate the Big Five group from the face of this continent.
The International IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) says the number of elephants killed has doubled and the amount of ivory seized has tripled over the last decade.
In its report made available during the opening of the African Elephant Summit held in Gaborone early this week, IUCN said elephant poaching and the illegal trade in ivory are of major concern across Africa, with serious security, economic, political and ecological ramifications.
When African range states are organizing militarized anti-poaching operations, Ngorongoro Conservation Area in northern Tanzania is taking conservation initiatives which brings closer the wildlife and humans, hence minimizing poaching crimes in the area.
Covering some 8,292 square kilometers of wildlife conserved area, Ngorongoro is a modal example of a place in this planet where natural foes – humans and wild animals are running to be permanent friends.
Good neighborliness between wildlife and humans had so far, reduced poaching of animals inside the conservation area, except few cases where animals are poached outside the area.
Sharing resources of the wide Serengeti plains, Ngorongoro, the grand world tourist site, has introduced domestic tourism programs that would attract local people to value tourist products – the wildlife, tourists and nature inside the conservation area. More....