The perilous 1,000-mile journey to save Africa’s endangered black rhinos
28 Oct 2022
In 2010 the Mozambican government began a translocation programme to Maputo Special Reserve in order to re-introduce species that were historically found in the area and to develop a tourism product. This multi-year endeavour has been made possible thanks to South Africa’s Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife kindly donating and translocating the wildlife, and Peace Parks Foundation donors supporting the translocation. In total 904 animals have been translocated since 2010.
The translocations are backed up by aerial surveys and counts, which have been taking place annually since 2011. The translocated animals are responding positively to their new habitat and an aerial census conducted late last year indicates that the introduced populations are steadily increasing.
Of particular interest during this census, was the sighting of seven waterbuck, the first sighting during an aerial census since 2006.
The species found to be the most abundant are hippo, reedbuck, elephant, grey duiker, red duiker, blue wildebeest and zebra, while the giraffe population is growing.
Reedbuck remain the largest population in the reserve, with a total of 499 individuals counted. Zebra and blue wildebeest have also increased significantly, with 270 and 126 counted respectively.
Kudu have shown an increase in sightings, while giraffe have increased significantly from the introduction of 8 in 2012 and 12 in 2013, to 35 individuals in 2014.