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mercoledì 2 settembre 2015
Botswana Vultures Face Extinction
Hukuntsi — Of Botswana's over 600 species of birds, about 30 face extinction due to poisoning. The director of BirdLife Botswana, Dr Kabelo Senyatso made the revelation at an inception workshop for a project funded by the European Union Non State Actors (EUNSA) and the government in Hukuntsi on recently.
He said the birds, especially vultures, die from eating carcasses that were poisoned to kill predators such as lions and hyenas. Dr Senyatso said vultures were the unintentional victims of poisoning meant for predators that were considered vermin to livestock.
He warned that the extinction of vultures would result in the spread of diseases from carcasses left to rot. He said the absence of vultures would disturb the balance of the ecosystem.
The EUNSA project seeks to safeguard the bio-diversity and integrity of the Kgalagadi ecosystem by empowering and involving communities in bio-diversity. It also sets out to improve the quality of life of communities through community based birding tourism and minimising human-wildlife conflict.
Dr Senyatso said it was vital for people surrounding national parks to form management committees in order to benefit from parks. He also encouraged village trust committees to come up with ways on how to better address issues of bird life and birding tourism in the area.
He furthermore implored all stakeholders to prioritise bird conservation. For his part, tourism development manager, Mr Leatile Setilo said while birds could attract tourists to Kgalagadi, the fact that the area lacks banks was a setback.
He noted that tourists visit Maun in high numbers to see the Okavango Delta because they were assured of services such as banking which allows them easy withdrawal of cash to buy locally manufactured products.
He said the lack of airstrips in Kgalagadi also militates against tourism promotion in the region. Kgosi Molaodi Leipego of Hukuntsi commended BirdLife Botswana for starting the project in the Hukuntsi Sub-district.
He said a lot of people do not know much about birds and require awareness if they were to conserve and benefit from birds.