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Severe drought forces Zimbabwe to sell off wildlife


Harare / AFP

Drought-hit Zimbabwe has invited local farmers and private game rangers to buy wild animals as it destocks national game reserves to save fauna from starvation, the wildlife authority said Wednesday.
Parks and wildlife authority spokeswoman Caroline Washaya said it has asked individuals and private game keepers to step in and buy wild animals “in the light of the drought”.
She did not have details of the species or numbers of the animals up for sale.
But the cash-strapped country has been battling to reduce its animals – especially elephants – whose population is more than twice what the parks can accomodate. A notice in a state newspaper invited “members of the public with the capacity to acquire and manage wildlife” to make offers to buy.
Zimbabwe has in recent years resorted to exporting elephants to countries like China in a bid to raise funds and cut the ballooning population.

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