Nearly 100 animals safely transferred from Kruger to Mozambique in collaborative conservation victory – SAPeople
Another victory for cross-border conservation, a series of successful wildlife transfers has enabled 27 zebras and 62 blue wildebeests to safely travel the 1,250 km journey from Kruger National Park in South Africa to Zinave National Park in Mozambique . These new arrivals are welcome additions to the more than 2,300 reintroduced animals that are now thriving as part of the restoration and management programs implemented at Zinave.
Since 2018, more than 700 animals have been transferred thanks to a donation from the South African Ministry of Forests, Fisheries and Environment to the Ministry of Lands and Environment of Mozambique, as they work together, with the support from the Peace Parks Foundation, to reconstitute and reconstruct key parks in the Greater Limpopo Transboundary Conservation Area. SA Environment Minister Barbara Creecy said:
“The translocation of species from Kruger National Park to Zinave National Park in
Mozambique is an important indication of how South Africa’s conservation success contributes to Africa’s rewilding. The success of the ongoing cross-border collaborations is an outstanding example of how African countries are working together to address conservation issues and develop the ecotourism sector.
The world-famous 2 million hectare Kruger National Park, managed by South African National Parks, offers a wildlife experience that ranks among the best in Africa. With over 147 mammal species thriving in abundant numbers thanks to many years of expert conservation management and protection strategies, the park is well positioned to support the restoration of decimated protected areas in neighboring southern African countries.
WATCH THE VIDEO: Rewilding Africa – From Kruger to Zinave
The restoration of Zinave National Park has been one of the most remarkable in southern Africa
conservation success stories. After decades of human impacts that severely disrupted the 408,000 ha park’s natural ecosystems and healthy wildlife populations, work began to restore Zinave to its former glory in 2016, with the signing of a co-management agreement between the National Administration of Conservation Areas of Mozambique and the Peace Parks.
Through this partnership, significant investments have been made to improve conservation management, anti-poaching, infrastructure development, tourism development and community development interventions in the park.
Today, thanks to donations of wild animals from South Africa and Zimbabwe and thanks to the repopulation of other parts of Mozambique, Zinave now has 13 species, including impala, reedbuck, waterbuck, buffalo, the zebra, the wildebeest, the giraffe, the sable and the elephant.
Thriving in their safe and abundant habitat, these reintroduced populations have more than doubled in number to nearly 6,000 animals. With the rise of herbivore populations, the first predators – a clan of four spotted hyenas – were reintroduced into the park at the end of 2020 and have already produced their own offspring.
Mozambique’s Minister of Territory and Environment, Ivete Maibaze, says:
“It is encouraging to see how healthy populations of wildlife have boosted the potential of
increased tourism and related income opportunities in and around Zinave. The park is poised to become a major contributor to Mozambique’s ecotourism economies. We highly appreciate the cross-border partnerships we have with our government partners in South Africa and with the Peace Parks Foundation. It is a wonderful example of how regional partnerships can help build a more prosperous future for Southern Africa and its people.
Kruger and Zinave National Parks respectively form the westernmost and easternmost anchor parks of a transboundary vital wildlife corridor within the Greater Limpopo Transboundary Conservation Area.
Wildlife monitoring has identified various species, such as elephants, lions and wild dogs, which use this cross-border migration route to access water, food and breeding grounds. Ensuring healthy and protected ecosystems in these areas is therefore not only important for parks, but also for the region’s environmental well-being, its natural resources and human development.