ravipatel888

World Bank earkmarks Mozambique Funds for Trophy Hunting

25 posts in this topic

A recent article from National Geographic highlighted the fact that the World Bank has earmarked funds for Mozambique towards trophy hunting of lions and elephants - with a a use it or lose it clause.

 

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/07/150708-trophy-hunting-poaching-elephants-lions-rhinos-africa/

 

Personally I find this a monumentally stupid decision, and not because it's trophy hunting, but the fact is that these are species that are critically close to becoming endangered and extinct. Also, Mozambique suffers heavily from poaching - and their wildlife was close to being wiped out during the civil war, and its only recently that these areas have been recovering. They don't even have large populations of elephant and lions that could justify a hunting for conservation, or culling argument.

 

It would be nice to hear from others, possibly more educated on this matter than me, on whether this strategy make sens or not - its completely incomprehensible to me.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the revenues from the enormous (am I mean ENORMOUS!) gas discoveries recently made offshore Mozambique, I would have hoped that raising relatively tiny sums of money from activities such as this would not be necessarily / desirable.

4 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel very strongly that this money could be far better spent in developing wildlife tourism in Mozambique particularly in combination with the Carr Foundation's efforts to develop wildlife conservation in Gorongosa National Park. I find this highly distasteful even though of course I find hunting a better alternative to poaching. I strongly suspect that there is an element of corruption involved.

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the revenues from the enormous (am I mean ENORMOUS!) gas discoveries recently made offshore Mozambique, I would have hoped that raising relatively tiny sums of money from activities such as this would not be necessarily / desirable.

 

oil/gas infrastructure ( including lng plant ) will take atleast 6 yrs minimum. the govts big capital gains are from concession sales not production profit taxes or royalties.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

With the revenues from the enormous (am I mean ENORMOUS!) gas discoveries recently made offshore Mozambique, I would have hoped that raising relatively tiny sums of money from activities such as this would not be necessarily / desirable.

 

oil/gas infrastructure ( including lng plant ) will take atleast 6 yrs minimum. the govts big capital gains are from concession sales not production profit taxes or royalties.

 

I beg to differ, but client confidentiality prevents me from saying any more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sasols sub $1billion in the south is not a mega project. Pemba & palma are yet to be developed - both from port logistics/dev, lng trains & lng production plants. going online/export not anticipated until '19 ( but unlikely ). Cb&I only won the onshore dev contract a few months ago. Not sure what you're inferring as these are public companies ( assuming anadarko does not flip rovuma 1/4 out to Exxon or other major they're the only big boy operator in the area )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

@@optig

Forget Gorongosa and Greg Carr please.......they are doing nothing to increase tourism in my country.

Worthless.....

 

@@ravipatel888

Coudn't agree more with you.

Those moneys should have gone to anti-poaching patrol. That's what. In Niassa Reserve in particular were its mostly needed

Edited by Grilointoafrica
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@optig,

 

Please, go to Gorongosa and then we can talk all about it.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some ST members here have been to Gorongosa but a few years ago now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Grilointoafrica

What's the problem with Gorongosa? I always thought this was a good project of conservation, what is your opinion about it and why do you think it is worthless. I have very little information about it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

@@jeremie

 

The Gorongosa Restoration Project is indeed a fantastic project and Gorongosa a delightful park, extremely rich in biodiversity (though the decline of the bulk grazers during the Mozambican Civil War has led to a situation where the medium sized ungulates are now dominant - Gorongosa has now the highest density of waterbuck in Africa, with a population exceeding 30,000; it is quite interesting that there are blocks in the Zambezi Delta where - due to good management - there is a burgeoning buffalo population, but moving buffalos from there into Gorongosa is not easy).

 

Not sure if it is visible in Chile, but Bob Poole has filmed a six episodes series recently shown on PBS and Nat Geo Wild - very worthwhile watching.

 

I visited Gorongosa in 2011 and thothoughly enjoyed it. You can read my trip report here:

 

http://safaritalk.net/topic/7503-nzou-safari-matusadona-mana-pools-and-gorongosa-augsept-2011/page-3

 

(The Gorongosa chapter starts towards the end of the page)

Edited by Paolo
1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Paolo! Please share the link! I have Free VPN Google Chrome Add on and thus can watch all geographic restricted videos!!!!

 

Yes I have read with careful attention your superb TR few years ago, this is the reason I would be very interested to know GrilointoAfrica opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@jeremie I’ve been meaning to post something for a little while but just a few weeks ago I watched the whole series on YouTube, here’s a link to the episodes these are not the official PBS uploads so you can watch them outside the USA. Gorongosa Park Rebirth of Paradise

 

Although there are 6 episodes there are only 4 videos, episode 1 Lion Mystery and episode 2 Elephant Whisperer are separate videos, the other 4 episodes have been combined into double episodes but 3 & 4 have been mislabelled 1 & 2 so I ended up watching this video first by mistake.

 

I don’t really know enough about the situation in Gorongosa though I know a lot more having watched this series I’m not surprised that tourist numbers are still only a fraction of what they once were. It will still take time for some of the larger herbivores specifically buffalos, wildebeest and zebras to build their numbers up to where they should be and then for the lion population to fully recover. Sourcing Crawshay’s zebras to build up the numbers of these animals has proved difficult and the numbers of the various other species that have been reintroduced are well below what was originally proposed I imagine because obtaining animals in the numbers required wasn’t possible. Having said that reasonable numbers of buffalo have been brought in I understand that one of the original reccomendations was to bring in 200 animals a year between 07 and 2015 and that clearly hasn't happened it was also suggested that 400 wildebeest should be brought in each year between 07 an 2011 but I don't suppose they have introduced anything like that number. So the animal populations aren't as high as they might have been now, however if anyone is to blame for the fact that not that many tourists are visiting Gorongosa it is surely RENAMO who briefly returned to site of their old HQ Casa Banana at the foot of Mt Gorongosa and resumed the war even if the fighting didn't last and peace was thankfully restored I've no doubt that this will have deterred more than a few tourists from visiting Gorongosa and Mozambique generally. This combined with the fact that over all game numbers (perhaps lions in particular) haven’t yet built up enough to draw people away from Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania etc probably explains the low tourist numbers.

 

The Niassa Reserve has absolutely stunning landscapes but game densities are naturally quite low, animals are not easy to see and the reserve is very remote and therefore difficult and expensive to get to. Unfortunately with an area like this it’s always going to be easier to make money from hunting, given the cost of a typical hunting safari the expense of getting to somewhere like Niassa is not really an issue for hunters. There’s already plenty of hunting going on in Mozambique and very little photographic tourism and I think the government has tended to favour hunting over photo tourism, whether this is because of the influence of the hunting companies or whether it’s just because hunting resumed after the war and is already bringing in lots of money whereas photo tourism hasn’t really resumed to any extent. If tourists eventually start to visit Gorongosa in large enough numbers then their attitude may change and they may see that other areas have other tourism potential besides hunting.

 

 

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Rob, I'll have a look to these videos!!!! With time Gorongosa will go back to their former glory, it's just a matter of time :)

Niassa is another place with lot's of problems today with poaching of elephants. :(

In the blocks close to the Niassa projects poaching is limited, far from their base camp it seems there is little control and poaching is very severe according to the information I got from the WCS project.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good points @@inyathi

 

Is increasing tourism the main goal of the Gorongosa project? @@Grilointoafrica

Or is that what you think it should do?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I want to stress that there is no lack of animals per se in Gorongosa: the number of bushbuck (both Chobe and Limpopo races), southern reedbuck and waterbuck is just ridiculous. Good greater kudu, sable (including a maxi herd of 110+ individuals seen towards the end of the dry season) and nyala. Birdlife is great, and night drives are excellent.

 

As I said, there is an imbalance in the ungulate mix, compared to the situation before the war, and this is where the Gorongosa Restoration Project is actively working, with varying degrees of success, and a scarcity of traditional "charismatic" animals: lions numbers are still quite low, elephants are slowly recovering, but edgy.

 

Having said that, the typical visitor to Gorongosa would naturally be a bit more sophisticated than the one looking for a snapshot of lions, since the main drawcards of the park are its rich biodiversity and lack of tourists itself.

 

Explore Gorongosa was doing fairly well, with a good occupancy rate when I visited. Then issues between the shareholders and other factors led to the loss of the Msicadzi concession. Asilia was to take over with quite ambitious plans, but then the new wave of RENAMO insurgency led first to a delay of the project then to a complete stop.

 

Perhaps something will happen when the political/security situation (not inside the park, that as such is safe, but in the areas of the Sofala Province surrounding it) becomes such to give investors a bit of confidence.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I have just finished to read the 2014 total count census of the core area of the park. I can say that the project achieved terrific results, this is a tremendous recovery of the park.

It is indeed very interesting to see that lions do not recover to the pre-war levels.

I am certainly not an expert, but I think lion might not be good hunters in swamp areas where waterbuck and reebuck live, which is the core of the biomass of the park. Lion population should increase proportionally to buffalo population increase and possibly wildebeest population too.

 

Kudu number is clearly an underestimate as they live in woody areas.

 

It is very interesting to see that 60 to 70% of the female elephants are without tusks, which is due to poachers killed most of the tuskers during the civil war. No tusk elephants, which represented 3% of the population according to the second episode of the series, have now transmitted their genes to the point No Tusks is the main characteristics of the elephants now. Elephants seem to stay in the Southern part of the park and do not go to the lake area. One hypothesis I have, is that it is a better shelter than open grasslands to cover themselves from humans (and it seems these lands make a very good habitat form them)

 

http://www.biofundmoz.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/GorongosaAerialWildlifeCount2014-GeneralReport-December2014-compress.pdf

 

I am quite surprised to see there is no cheetah nor wild dogs in the park.

Edited by jeremie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@jeremie

 

I actually saw some elephants around Lake Urema.

 

As to lions, I think you are right when you suggest that their number may be somehow linked to the number of buffalos.

 

I was told that the main prey for them were warthogs (there are tonnes of them) and especially bushbucks and to a lesser extent reedbucks. The fact is that those antelopes are so ubiquitous in the floodplains that a lion has almost just to raise a paw to catch something.

 

This kind of prey leads to smaller lion prides. If they were hunting buffalos or wildebeest or zebra they would be forced to form bigger coalitions with thus a social structure more conducive to higher numbers overall.

 

This was the explanation given to me by people in Gorongosa, though other factors - including snaring - play obviously a role.

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It would be interesting to have the numbers of lions in the Zambezi delta, where there is an estimated >10.000 buffaloes according to this census:

http://www.biofundmoz.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Aerial-Survey-Report-Marromeu-2010-Beilfuss-et-al-2.pdf

 

Do you know why the Gorongosa project does not bring more buffaloes from this place? Distance? Access?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@jeremie

 

Not sure if the reasons are different now, but a few years ago they were looking to introduce disease-free buffalos from SA.

 

The Zambezi Delta is not an easy area to operate anyway. I have no clue as to the lions there, but if we take out the prey-base from the equation, the swamps might be less favourable to lions than the plains and woodlands of Gorongosa.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It would be interesting to have the numbers of lions in the Zambezi delta, where there is an estimated >10.000 buffaloes according to this census:

http://www.biofundmoz.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Aerial-Survey-Report-Marromeu-2010-Beilfuss-et-al-2.pdf

 

Do you know why the Gorongosa project does not bring more buffaloes from this place? Distance? Access?

 

Difficult to distinguish what's counted and what's estimated. For elephants and buffaloes only total counts are given, and then an 'estimate'. Confidence intervals are referred to in Annex 2, but are actually presented in Appendix I, and elephants and buffalo are not included in the tables with the counts, estimates and confidence intervals!

In the text table 1 has a column 'Floodplain estimate', but for buffalo and elephants this is not an estimate, it's a count. The total count of buffalo is Nov 2008 was 10,087 and in May 2009 it was 8,019. For elephants those numbers were 267 and 351. The numbers of elephants and buffalo counted outside the floodplain are neglible. Clearly the elephant population can't have increased by about 30% in half a year, and likewise it's doubtful the buffalo population has dropped 20% in half a year. This indicates that there is a big difference in detection probability between the seasons, but this is not accounted for.

When I look in Appendix I to see the estimates and their accompanying confidence intervals to get an idea how precise the estimates are I see very wide confidence intervals for a lot of species. IE Sable in November 2008 has a count of 510, an estimate of 1275 and a confidence interval ranging from 390 to 2160. In May 2009 this was 327, 817 and CI from 257 to 1377. Most species have an estimated error of >50% of their best estimate. Some species are included but not confidence interval is presented because not enough data was present, however, an estimate is presented. I think an estimate is always accompanied by a CI, so no idea why they wouldn't just present the count but chose to present a count and estimate. For some reason buffalo and elephant are not included in this table. For elephant there might not be enough data to calculate CI's, but I doubt that as CI's are presented for species with a lower count. For buffalo there must certainly be enough data to present estimates and CI's, but this is done. If they have a similar CI as other species, ie about 50% of the estimates than their best estimate might be 10,300 buffalo, but it could range from 5,150 to 15,450. Makes you think why it wasn't included.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@egilio @@jeremie

 

Interestingly, there seems to have been an aerial survey in November 2014 where more than 20,000 buffalos were counted in the Zambezi Delta. I recall that one of the Coutadas is richer than the others.

 

Someone whom I know recently flew over the area, and was quite amazed by the amount of wildlife that he unexpectedly saw.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

It would be interesting to have the numbers of lions in the Zambezi delta, where there is an estimated >10.000 buffaloes according to this census:

http://www.biofundmoz.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Aerial-Survey-Report-Marromeu-2010-Beilfuss-et-al-2.pdf

 

Do you know why the Gorongosa project does not bring more buffaloes from this place? Distance? Access?

 

Difficult to distinguish what's counted and what's estimated. For elephants and buffaloes only total counts are given, and then an 'estimate'. Confidence intervals are referred to in Annex 2, but are actually presented in Appendix I, and elephants and buffalo are not included in the tables with the counts, estimates and confidence intervals!

In the text table 1 has a column 'Floodplain estimate', but for buffalo and elephants this is not an estimate, it's a count. The total count of buffalo is Nov 2008 was 10,087 and in May 2009 it was 8,019. For elephants those numbers were 267 and 351. The numbers of elephants and buffalo counted outside the floodplain are neglible. Clearly the elephant population can't have increased by about 30% in half a year, and likewise it's doubtful the buffalo population has dropped 20% in half a year. This indicates that there is a big difference in detection probability between the seasons, but this is not accounted for.

When I look in Appendix I to see the estimates and their accompanying confidence intervals to get an idea how precise the estimates are I see very wide confidence intervals for a lot of species. IE Sable in November 2008 has a count of 510, an estimate of 1275 and a confidence interval ranging from 390 to 2160. In May 2009 this was 327, 817 and CI from 257 to 1377. Most species have an estimated error of >50% of their best estimate. Some species are included but not confidence interval is presented because not enough data was present, however, an estimate is presented. I think an estimate is always accompanied by a CI, so no idea why they wouldn't just present the count but chose to present a count and estimate. For some reason buffalo and elephant are not included in this table. For elephant there might not be enough data to calculate CI's, but I doubt that as CI's are presented for species with a lower count. For buffalo there must certainly be enough data to present estimates and CI's, but this is done. If they have a similar CI as other species, ie about 50% of the estimates than their best estimate might be 10,300 buffalo, but it could range from 5,150 to 15,450. Makes you think why it wasn't included.

 

 

Did not get the last part of your post, if it's total count, there is no CI right? This would explain the difference of number as I guess this method is far from being adequate for realizing total count (2 km between each transect, width of 800 meters, "When buffalo or elephant herds were sited outside the transects, the pilot marked the current GPS location along the transect and then diverged from the transects to enable accurate recording of the species, position, and number for each observation (based on direct count or photographs as appropriate). The pilot then returned to the previous GPS position and resumed the transect survey. " I guess these total counts are thus under-counts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@jeremie I forgot to mention, but thanks for those links to those reports! You seem to provide us with an endless stream to reports, I really appreciate that!

 

Most of the area was only counted at a 40% intensity. So the total count is 'just' a count, and the census is not a census but a survey. When you start flying loops to count animals outside the survey area things get nasty. You don't know your survey intensity anymore, so you get a count of animals and surveyed >40% of the area. Why not just count the animals inside the transects? Or at least analyze the nrs of buffalo and nrs of observations of buffalo from inside the transects? Then you can estimate numbers, and the CI's.

If you just count animals, and don't account for survey intensity, or sighting probabilities your survey results are really just counts and don't tell you much. Look at the elephants for example. In november 2008 they counted 267 and in May 2009 they counted 351. Did the population grow? Well, you can be sure the population did not grow more than 30% as that's biologically impossible. So why the difference? Based on this report you have no idea, they just counted more of them. You don't even know how many were counted within the 40% survey area! Maybe the difference in numbers has to do with movement of elephants, maybe it has to do with differences in observers, maybe it has to do with weather conditions, vegetation etc. You can account for vegetation, weather, observers to tighten up the CI's and have more power in the detection of population trends, but the way the data is analyzed in this report and how it is presented you can't say anything about trends in the elephant and buffalo population. You can't even safely state that it's a minimum count because you can't exclude double counts, 2 consecutive transects are spaced 2 km from each other, if they're conducted on different days, or even part of the day (morning and afternoon) you might count some twice, but you don't know how many you count twice.

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.


© 2006 - 2017 www.safaritalk.net - Talking Safaris and African Wildlife Conservation since 2006. Passionate about Africa.