News / Africa

    Zimbabwe Wildlife Poisoned

    A critically endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) eats a Bushbuck's head and neck in the Mana Pools National Park, a World Heritage Site, in northern Zimbabwe November 7, 2009.
    A critically endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) eats a Bushbuck's head and neck in the Mana Pools National Park, a World Heritage Site, in northern Zimbabwe November 7, 2009.

    Poaching of Zimbabwe's dwindling wildlife is at an all-time high, and for the first time poison being put in water holes in protected areas is killing animals and endangering people living nearby.  Wildlife is Zimbabwe's main tourist attraction.

    Zimbabwe's Parks and Wildlife Management Authority says that poachers have poisoned water holes in five national parks, killing at least 21 animals including lions and elephants, and that villagers living nearby are in danger.

    Caroline Washaya-Moyo, spokesman for the parks authority, said poachers have developed new, "silent" techniques to kill animals, and that this was only discovered after the bodies of animals were found near water holes in some of Zimbabwe's most famous national parks last week.

    National parks officials say this is the first time animals in protected wildlife areas have died from poisoning.

    Peter Henning has been involved in wildlife management in southeastern Zimbabwe for many years.    

    He said although the poison had not yet been identified by government laboratories, he believed examination would find that a common poison known as "two step" was responsible for killing the wildlife and that this poison would continue to contaminate the area indefinitely.

    "Sometimes [it is] called 'two step" meaning  the animal once it consumes water with the poison in it takes two steps then it dies, very potent and that would mean the water in which it has been placed is permanently poisoned, it's very likely the mud itself is contaminated," said Henning.

    Henning said there was massive destruction of Zimbabwe's wildlife taking place in several protected areas. He said he has specific evidence of destruction of wildlife in low lying parts of southeastern Zimbabwe near a small town called Chiredzi.

    "I can speak of the Zimbabwe lowveld where there is complete devastation taking place at the moment," Henning added.  "A number of conservancies, Chiredzi River Conservancy is willfully being invaded now at the encouragement of some powerful politicians and they are cutting down trees, and slaughtering the wildlife including elephant and rhino."

    Henning said many animals were being poached, with wire traps being used to kill giraffe and deer. He said there was little evidence at present that guns were being used to kill wildlife.

    He said the new poaching method, poisoning water holes, was incomprehensible in its cruelty.  He said poisoned animals were a danger to birds and animals feeding on the carcasses as well as hungry people tempted to cook and eat the meat.

    "It is depravity in its extremity you can't describe it in any other manner," said Henning.

    National parks officials issued warnings to everyone including game rangers to carry fresh water with them and not drink from any of the watering places in the five protected wildlife areas affected by the poisoning.

    You May Like

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    City could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters

    Turkey Aims New Crackdown at Journalists, Academics, Airline Workers

    Ankara continues targeting people allegedly linked to exiled cleric, who it says led the failed military coup

    Pakistan Ready to Inaugurate Rebuilt Afghan Border Crossing

    Construction of Torkham Gate triggered deadly clashes between Pakistani and Afghan military forces

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora