Poaching of wild animals in the Chobe National Park is a serious threat to Botswana’s economy. If this phenomenon is allowed to continue, Botswana’s valuable trophies will be depleted and there will be nothing left to attract tourists in future.
The increasing incidents of poaching in the Chobe National Park is said to be affecting giant animals like elephants and other common species like lions, buffalos, waterbucks, giraffes and many more. These species contribute immensely to the country’s economic growth and also attract tourists from far places like Asia, Europe, Australia and the United States of America.
As these tourists drive on Kasane/Ngoma road just near the turn off to Kasane Airport, they are met with a very huge advertisement board written “Welcome to Chobe, Land of the Giants, which confirms the presence of diversity and concentration of animals. These giants include elephants which its poaching is said to be swelling rapidly according to the Police and the Department of Wildlife and National Parks in Chobe.
In an interview with the Police Magazine during their recent visit to Chobe, Officer Commanding No.7 District which covers Pandamatenga, Kasane, Kazungula and villages of Mabele up to Parakarungu, Senior Superintendent Tamapo Nthoiwa did not hesitate to express concern about poaching in the area despite their efforts to curtail it. Mr Nthoiwa said poachers target elephants and concentrate at areas like Cream of Tartar Pans near Pandamatenga and at places like Natanga, Shaile, Maikaelelo and Ngwezuma Valley that connects to Nogatshaa in the Park.
Mr Nthoiwa said that there are suspicions that these species especially elephants are killed for commercial purposes and medical use in illegal international markets. “These suspected high markets encourage this kind of poaching and this therefore calls for law enforcement officers to identify the market for elephants poachers so that these endangered species are not left to deplete” he said. Mr Nthoiwa added that another kind of poaching is performed with the objective of providing meat for household consumption. More....