DAR ES SALAAM
(Xinhua) -- The number of elephants in
the Serengeti-Maasai Mara ecosystem has increased from 258 in
1986 to 7,535, according to the results of a latest survey
The census was conducted by a
scientists’ community from Tanzania and Kenya which are sharing
the ecosystem covering 32,000 square-kilometers of the
Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Serengeti National Park, Maswa
District, Ikongoro and Grumeti Wildlife Management areas, and
Kijereshi Game Reserve on the Tanzanian side as well as Masai
Mara National Park and adjacent areas in the Narok County of
Tanzania’s Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism
Lazaro Nyalandu said an aerial survey conducted between May
19 and June 6 this year indicated there were 7,535 jumbos as
opposed to 258 in 1986.
An analysis of the census data suggests an increase of
elephants in the southern part of the ecosystem in contrast
to a decline in the northern part, Nyalandu said.
"Besides a birthrate upsurge, there is no other
explanation to the increase," the minister said, admitting
that elephants’ migration from the north to the south could
partly play a role.
Nyalandu said 192 carcasses of elephants were counted in
the entire ecosystem, 117 of which, equivalent to 61
percent, were in Kenya, and 75 of them, equivalent to 39 per
cent, were in Tanzania.
However, barely 17 carcasses were estimated to have been
of elephants killed within the last 18 months, suggesting
that poaching was on the decline in the recent past.
The buffalo population was also counted during the census
which established 61,896 of them, 18 per cent increase from
54,974 in 1986.
"These results provide highest population estimates of
elephants and buffaloes ever recorded in history," the minister
"The results are encouraging, for the situation is not as bad
as the global community has been portraying," said Charles
Musyoki, the head of Kenya delegation and assistant wildlife
Musyoki said on behalf of the cabinet secretary in charge of
wildlife that owing to the Serengeti-Masai Mara transcending
boundaries, there was a need for establishing and nurturing
dialogue on important conservation issues.
Man killed by elephants in
northern Tanzania village
ARUSHA, Tanzania (Xinhua) --
A herd of elephants wreaked havoc in
northern Tanzania’s district of Longido, killing one person and
injuring several others, an official said on Wednesday.
James Ole Millya, Longido District Commissioner, told Xinhua
via telephone that the man was killed on Sunday when the
elephants strayed into Tingatinga village, located nearly 85 km
from the northern tourist hub of Arusha.
"Some people sustained with severe injuries in the tragic
incident," the commissioner said, adding that "The killed
man was at his home when a herd of elephants attacked him."
The official said after a few hours, fully-armed wildlife
rangers arrived in the village, teamed with villagers and
killed one of the elephants.
"They also managed to chase away the group of elephants,
which were still roaming around the village," he said,
adding that the dead man becomes the sixth to be killed by
elephants in the past three years.
"We have been asking wildlife officials to chip-in and
address the challenge, but nothing is done on the ground,"
The commissioner has directed Longodi district council to set
up an office for wildlife officers in Tingatinga village to
address the challenge which is becoming chronic in the area.
"..we also asked the district council to evaluate the
crop damage caused by elephants, which have been storming
people’s farms," he said.
Tingatinga village is one of the villages which is close to
wildlife corridor that allows wild animals to migrate from the
Longido-Oloitokitok-West-Kilimanjaro eco-system and Kenya’s
Amboseli National Park.
Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Wildlife
Conservancy develops anti- poaching device
NANYUKI (Xinhua) --
The East Africa’s largest black rhino sanctuary,
Ol Pejeta Wildlife Conservancy said Wednesday it has acquired
software that automatically identifies poachers and counts
wildlife in real time.
Public Relations Manager, Elodie Sampere, said the
application dubbed Rhino Finda developed by a student, James
Ault, analyses thermal imaging footage to automatically count
"We believe that the long-term future of wildlife
tracking lies in automatic recognition technology software
that will review thermal and visual video footage from
unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and automatically recognize
and count wildlife," she said in a statement issued from
Sampere said the technology can automatically identify a
poacher moving within the sanctuary for swift response.
According to Sampere, the application was chosen following a
worldwide competition that attracted submissions from students.
Ol Pejeta Conservancy is a 90,000-acre game reserve hosting a
wide array of wildlife. Since late 2009, it has also been home
to four of the last seven northern white rhinos left in the