Zimbabwe decided to give the right to hunt as many as 500 elephants for $70,000 per animal to help fund the maintenance of its national parks.
As per the reports, the hunting season, which takes place over the southern hemisphere winter stopped due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020. Zimbabwe stands the second in largest elephant population in the world and neighboring Botswana at the first position.
Many times Environmental groups criticized both for their schemes to profit from elephant hunting. After a five-year ban, Botswana is now resuming Elephant hunting. Zambia and Namibia also have substantial elephant populations.
“How do we fund our operations, how do we pay our men and women who spend 20 days in the bush looking after these animals?” said Tinashe Farawo, a spokesman for the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, in an interview on April 17. “Those who are opposed to our management mechanism should instead be giving us the funding to manage better these animals.”
The cost to shoot an elephant will cost between $10,000 and $70,000 depending on its size. The park’s authority is self-financed and its revenue has also been reduced by the plunge in the number of tourists because of Coronavirus pandemic.
Zimbabwe has an excessive number of elephants close to 100,000 that increased the number of accidents when people encounter them, he said. This is also damage to crops and occasional fatalities when the elephants encounter people.
So far this year 1,000 complaints have been made to the authority compared with 1,500 in all of last year.
“The distress calls from the communities have been increasing due to human wildlife conflict,” Farawo said. “So far 21 people have lost their lives and last year 60 people.
The southern African country draws most of its hunters from U.S., Russia, Mexico and the European Union. In addition to paying for the license to kill the elephant the tourists pay professional hunters to guide them and have their trophies treated by taxidermists and exported back to their home countries.