Namibia is putting 170 live elephants up for sale as an alternative to hunting, due to over-population and human-animal conflict.
The ministry says the elephants are being sold ‘due to drought and increase in elephant numbers coupled with human-elephant conflict incidences.’
According to the state-owned newspaper New Era, there has been a rapid rise in the population of elephants, and as a result there is an increase in human-animal conflict.
There has been a massive increase in Namibia’s elephant population to 28,000 elephants
The elephant population had decreased to 5,000 animals at in 1990, but gradually increased thanks to a conservation programme and Namibia is now home to 28,000 elephants.
Environment Minister Pohamba Shifeta said that the government decided to support the policy of selling live animals after being criticised for shooting elephants to control overpopulation.
The governement has decided to put up 170 elephants up for sale, as an alternative to hunting
He said: ‘We decided – after research – to sell them instead’.
The advertisement said that elephants on sale would comprise entire herds in order to preserve the important social structure in elephant communities – infants or juveniles will not be left behind.
Shifeta warned that Namibia would not recklessly sell the elephants to buyers, saying ‘we have to make sure that the country is conducive.’
Elephants on sale would comprise entire herds to preserve the social structure in communities
Buyers must ensure all the requirements for both exporting and importing states are met in order for the trade to be authorised, according to the notice.
Last year the government offered for sale around 1,000 animals including 600 buffalo, 150 springboks, 60 giraffes and 28 elephants.