Kruger Park in South Africa begins Controversial Drought Culling
Using the current drought across South Africa as a convenient pretext, the authorities running the Kruger Park have started culling substantial numbers of large herbivores ostensibly to relieve pressure on available resources, but apparently to supply meat to surrounding communities opportunistically protesting to claim Kruger Park land as their ancestral right and to free up water resources for such communities.
Blaming Hippo poo, they have started seriously reducing the 7 500 hippos in the Park.
To fulfil government commitments to feeding schemes for surrounding communities, thousands of buffalo have been “harvested”. Again a pretext is used to justify the rape and plunder of South Africa’s natural assets: There is no ‘natural attrition’ from human beings. Park officials claim that before Europeans arrived and declared a park, there were around 15 000 hunter-gatherers using it as their shopping mall! Yet historically there are no records of 15 000 people in the area.
Under “European” management the Kruger Park was established and thrived. Under “Post-Colonial” management, the Park has become a political pawn to satisfy the greed of often corrupt officials who have no thought or concern for the wildlife they are supposed to protect.
What is of particular concern is that the very officials responsible for the present culling are planning to use the present situation as a precedent for future “harvesting”, having already given notice that similar actions will be taken in the future.
Spanish wetlands and wildlife sanctuary under threat
Donana National Park, part of southern Spanish wetland used by 6 million migratory birds, could dry out completely unless the Spanish government tackles the threat of dredging, mining and intensive farming, a report said on Thursday.
The World Wildlife Fund said Spain was failing to safeguard the 54,000 hectare (209 square mile) site, which stretches along the Guadalquivir River at its estuary on the Atlantic Ocean in Andalusia.
“The Donana wetland is at a crossroads. Poor management and over-extraction of water are causing Donana to dry out and the area now receives only 20 percent of its natural water input,” WWF said in the report.
The group called on Spain to eliminate what it said are 1,000 illegal wells and 3,000 hectares of illegal farming fields, and cancel dredging of the Guadalquivir River to protect and recover the park’s water sources.