350 jum­bos death probe hits dead end

The Asian Age - - World -

Jo­han­nes­burg: The south­ern Africa coun­try of Botswana is strug­gling to in­ves­ti­gate the rea­sons for the mys­te­ri­ous deaths of over 350 ele­phants in the pop­u­lar Oka­vango Delta na­ture re­serve. Au­thor­i­ties in Botswana, home to a third of Africa’s de­clin­ing ele­phant pop­u­la­tion, are strug­gling to send sam­ples for anal­y­sis to in­ter­na­tional agen­cies to de­ter­mine the cause of the deaths due to the lack of flights be­cause of the Covid-19 lock­down in the re­gion. The sud­den mass deaths of ele­phants, which sci­en­tists have called a con­ser­va­tion disas­ter, were first spot­ted dur­ing an ae­rial sur­vey in early May. The num­ber of ele­phants died have since risen to over 350, most of them close to wa­ter­ing holes which have prompted sug­ges­tions that they might have died from poi­son­ing. But other sci­en­tists pointed out that if the wa­ter was in­deed poi­soned, it would have killed other an­i­mals as well. Lo­cal ex­perts have already ruled out an­thrax as a pos­si­ble cause, af­ter about 100 ele­phants died of that dis­ease last year.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.