Namibia has lost nine rhinos to poaching in various national parks this year, according to the environment ministry. The statistics show three black, and six white rhinos were poached this year alone.
The three black rhinos were killed in the Etosha National Park, while six rhinos were poached for their horns at private-owned white rhino reserves. Environment spokesperson Romeo Muyunda also issued national elephant poaching statistics per year from 2014 to 2021.
The figures show that four elephants have been poached this year compared 2020 where 12 such endangered species were killed for their tusks.
The four elephant carcasses were discovered between 21 May and 21 June this year in Tsumkwe in the Nyae-Nyae conservancy, Gam in the Ondjou conservancy, Buffalo Core area in Omega of Kavango East and Mahango Core area in the same north eastern region.
With both elephant and rhino statistics showing a decline over the years, Muyunda explained the drop is attributed to the increased law enforcement activities against wildlife crimes through their collaboration with law enforcement agencies. According to him, intelligence has also led to more arrests of perpetrators before the actual poaching.
“The arrests also serve as a deterrence. There is currently good cooperation with members of the public who continue to inform us and lead us to potential or actual poaching cases. Overall, the country is standing together against poaching. There is still more to be done to get the numbers to zero and to maintain such low figures considering the fact that poachers will be challenged to find innovative ways to counter our efforts,” Muyunda said.
The ministry, however, endeavours and pledges to stay ahead of the poaching syndicates by anticipating their next moves.
To poachers and those intending to, he maintained, should be warned that Namibia has taken a stand against poaching, and they will be rooted out to face the full force of the law. During 2019, the ministry recorded 13 elephant poaching cases, which is a reduction compared to 27 recorded in 2018.
The year 2017, recorded 50 cases, unlike 2016 which recorded the highest elephant poaching cases which stood at 101.
Elephant poaching statistics for 2015 stood at 49 compared to 78 cases during 2014.