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Tanzanian Conservation Institutions Plan to Relocate Rhinos to Boost Tourism

Isotopes in horn to prevent poaching of African Rhinos (Photo: WWF)

Isotopes in horn to prevent poaching of African Rhinos (Photo: WWF)

Tanzania had about 10,000 rhinos in the 1970s and the number declined to 65 in the 1990s and went up again to 161 in 2018 and 190 in 2020.

Two Tanzanian conservation institutions have undertaken a joint ecological survey aimed at relocating rhinos into the country’s Arusha National Park, an official said.

The Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) and the Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute based in Arusha, a gateway to safari destinations, undertook the ecological survey after the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism Damas Ndumbaro urged TANAPA to introduce rhinos to the Arusha National Park, reports Xinhua news agency.

On Thursday, William Mwakilema, TANAPA tourism and business deputy conservation commissioner, said the introduction of rhinos into the Arusha National Park will enhance tourism in the area.

In March, Ndumbaro directed TANAPA to reintroduce rhinos into the Mikumi National Park to enable tourists to have a wider choice of animals to watch. Ndumbaro said the Mikumi National Park once boasted of rhinos but the animals were wiped out there by poachers in the 1980s.

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Tanzania had about 10,000 rhinos in the 1970s and the number declined to 65 in the 1990s and went up again to 161 in 2018 and 190 in 2020. The sharp decline in the population of rhinos in the country is attributed to poaching and habitat destruction.

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first published:July 16, 2021, 15:07 IST