Botswana investigating mystery deaths of 275 elephants
GABORONE: The number of elephants found dead in Botswana’s Okavango Panhandle has risen to 275 from 154 reported two weeks ago, the government said on Thursday.
Authorities are investigating the unexplained deaths over the past months. Poaching has been ruled out as the carcasses were found intact.
“Three laboratories in Zimbabwe, South Africa and Canada have been identified to process the samples taken from the dead elephants,” the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources, Conservation and Tourism said in a statement.
In early May, Elephants without Borders (EWB), a conservation organisation, reported that its own aerial survey showed elephants of all ages appeared to be dying.
“Several live elephants that we observed appeared to be weak, lethargic and emaciated. Some elephants appeared disorientated, had difficulty walking, showed signs of partial paralysis or a limp,” EWB director Mike Chase said in a report seen by Reuters. - Reuters