Elephant Pride: why I am not travelling to Botswana anymore.

I do not usually ask readers to share my posts, but this time I will: please share it or re blog it. The issue I am writing about today touches me deeply and should be of interest to anyone on this planet.

If you follow my blog you have certainly understood that beside my own Country, which is Italy, my favourite travel destination is Africa. I have been travelling to Africa quite a lot in the past decade, touching almost every sub Saharan Country.

If I had to choose a country where my safari experiences have been the best I would definitely say: Botswana. I have been to Botswana several times in the past years, but I decided I’m not going there anymore.

Elephants at Cobe National Park – Botswana. Photo by Matteo Gazzarata

Botswana was the Elephants’ paradise. Being the only Country where hunting was forbidden, big families of elephants moved there and the population increased quite a lot. Although I understand that living with the elephants every day of your life is quite different than seeing them for a couple of weeks during your holidays, I also believe that there are several ways to prevent the damages caused by them to agriculture and the accidents that may occur in a land so populated by wildlife.

The first time I visited Botswana I had incredible photographic safaris: elephants were everywhere and the close encounters I had with them were simply breathtaking, emotional and, to be honest with you, I never had the impression I was in danger being so close to them. But I am a traveller, not a local resident, thus I also understand that being on a safari is different than living in Kasane, very close to the elephant corridor.

At that time, elephant hunting was forbidden in Botswana.

Elephants’ pool close to Nata. Botswana. Photo by Matteo Gazzarata

Last year, rumors started that the Government wanted to lift the hunting ban because the number of elephants was too high and the amount of accidents increased both against humans and crops.

When I first heard about that I thought immediately about how hunters and poachers would take advantage from it. “it’s a controlled and regulated hunting” they said, “people and agriculture must be protected”

It is not true: lifting a hunting ban is like releasing a formal invitation for poachers and hunters to kill wildlife with no regrets, just for personal satisfaction (what is the satisfaction in killing a elephant!!!!!) or simply because of ridiculous believes in medication properties of animal parts.

Reality is that hunting is a business: most of those who want to go for a hunt, disburse incredibly huge amount of money and that is why even the locals believe that killing “some” elephants is good for the community.

In the news yesterday it was reported that hunting license were on sale for 43.000,00 USD!!! If that is not business I don’t know what else can be.

Elephants hug. Chobe National Park – Botswana. Photo by Matteo Gazzarata

It might be because the diamond mining, which supported the growth of the local economy for decades, will end, sooner or later, that the government choose to find some other sources of income. Selling hunting licenses for good money is the best solution they thought about!!!!!

I am not going to Botswana anymore, until this horrible and unjustified elephant killing will be banned again.

Nature is ahead of anyone of us.

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6 thoughts on “Elephant Pride: why I am not travelling to Botswana anymore.

    • It is. Especially because the fact that “controlled killing” is a lie. There are several science based solutions to the problem, but hunting allows local governments to get a lot of money. As there are several stupid westerners who pay for that!!!


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