As if animal poaching wasn’t enough to bring down Zimbabwe’s wildlife population to piteous numbers, poachers are into large-scale baby abduction. Despite being a nation with bright prospects for wildlife affluence, Zimbabwe is facing serious concerns when it comes to preservation of wildlife, the new issue being abduction of infant animals.
Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force has reported that wildlife infants are being abducted from National Park for being shipped to zoos in China. Not to mention that these zoos have been in the news for their deplorable conditions. The recent update on their report claims that 36 baby elephants have been abducted from National Park, with one of them already reported to have died.
Baby elephants are not the only abductees. According to reports, 7 lions and about 10 sable antelope have been taken to be shipped in containers and livestock freighters. It is feared that most of these infants may not even survive the trip, with further concerns being added by the Chinese Zoo department’s approach towards wildlife care.
Elephant captivity was reported by witnesses among tourists and it was highlighted by a non-profit wildlife conservation group earlier in November. While authorities concerned are yet to respond to the matter, environment minister Saviour Kasukuwere is reported to have said that captured elephants would be shipped to the United Arab Emirates.
An online petition calls for a ban on export of animals to China.
Zimbabwe authorities have proven to be ignorant when dealing with preservation of wildlife. Elephant count in the nation has come down to 47,000 in 2012 from 84,000 in 2007, the main reason being poaching. There have only been isolated efforts to keep a check on this, including attempts by ex-poachers.