Latest News30 May 2013
Maputo Special Reserve 2013 Translocation
The Mozambican government's translocation programme, a multi-year endeavour now in its third year of operation, recently saw the introduction of 78 wildebeest to Maputo Special Reserve. The plan is to restock the reserve with a founder population of 100 wildebeest during 2013.
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Lubombo Transfrontier Conservation and Resource Area includes five distinct transfrontier conservation areas between Mozambique, South Africa and Swaziland. Globally it is one of the most striking areas of biodiversity and lies in the Maputaland Centre of Endemism. It also includes five Ramsar sites: Ndumo Game Reserve, the Kosi Bay System, Lake Sibaya, the Turtle Beaches and Coral Reefs of Tongaland, and Lake St Lucia, which at 350km² is the largest estuary in Africa. The establishment of Lubombo will reunite the last naturally occurring elephant populations of KwaZulu-Natal and southern Mozambique, which historically moved freely across the border along the Futi system and Rio Maputo floodplains.
Five protocols towards Lubombo’s establishment were signed on 22 June 2000.
The five sub-TFCAs of Lubombo are the following:
- Lubombo Conservancy-Goba TFCA (Mozambique/Swaziland)
- Usuthu-Tembe-Futi TFCA (Swaziland/South Africa/Mozambique)
- Ponta do Ouro-Kosi Bay TFCA (Mozambique/South Africa)
- Nsubane-Pongola TFCA (South Africa/Swaziland)
- Songimvelo-Malolotja TFCA (South Africa/Swaziland)
The 2012 wildlife translocation programme from South Africa to Mozambique was successfully concluded. Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife donated 438 animals, including 89 kudu, 33 warthog, 75 impala, 74 nyala, 159 zebra and eight giraffe, and also translocated them to Maputo Special Reserve. An aerial animal census in September 2012 confirmed that the translocated animals have adapted well to their new environment.
A Joint Operation Strategy between the Maputo Special Reserve and the Tembe Elephant Park in South Africa is being developed and will focus on issues of joint management. Anti-poaching officials from the two parks continuously shared information and conducted meetings to discuss the best ways of addressing poaching in the area.
In September a joint aerial game count of the two components was conducted. The most abundant species in Maputo Special Reserve were found to be reedbuck, estimated at 1 212 animals. The total number of elephant counted was 264, with an estimated total of 452, many of whom were in the Futi Corridor. A few large herds numbering close to 80 were observed in the middle of the Futi, or just north of the Tembe Elephant Park boundary fence.
A number of exciting projects to develop Maputo Special Reserve and the Ponta do Ouro Partial Marine Reserve, all the while benefiting local communities, are taking place.