Kruger National Park still tackling elephant poaching

Gabon's national parks agency is bringing hi-tech to the equatorial forests of central Africa in a bid to save thousands of elephants from well-drilled and armed poachers. Photo: HANDOUT/ANPN/AFP

JOHANNESBURG – Co-operation between the Kruger National Park authorities and bordering communities have reported that there has been a steep decline in elephant poaching.

The north of the park has seen a whopping 40 percent decline in elephant poaching incidents last year.

However, for the rest of the park elephant poaching has climbed from 46 percent in 2016 to 67 percent in 2017.

Ike Phaahla from South African National Parks (SANParks) said poachers are charged with illegal hunting in the park and possession of unlicensed firearms.

"Possession of ammunition and other charges so that we build up a case and if they are found guilty they will get no less than seven years in jail.”

READ: SANParks uses Buffet donation to fight poaching

Co-operation from surrounding communities is ensuring that poaching numbers come down.

“Because of this project, the number of arrests in the western boundary elephant or other poaching activities went down from 2015, 2016 and 2017,” said ranger Tinyiko Golele.

While some animals are poached by locals for human consumption, it is not necessarily the case for neighbouring countries.

Strict access control is now implemented at park entrances to try and stop the illegal activities.


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