Zimbabwe authorities have begun a probe into the death of 11 elephants in a forest in the western part of the country.
Authorities said the mammals were found dead in Pandamasue Forest, between Hwange and Victoria Falls, on Friday.
The Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (Zimparks) spokesperson Tinashe Farawo said the authority has begun investigations to determine the cause of death.
” Zimparks suspects anthrax. Veterinary doctors are on the ground and we are waiting for results from the laboratory,” Farawo said.
Last year, at least 200 elephants died in Zimbabwe’s largest game reserve, Hwange National Park. Those deaths were attributed to drought.
This year more than 350 elephants died mysteriously in neighbouring Botswana.
Scientists tagged the heart-wrenching death a “conservation disaster,” and one that has defied explanations.
The elephants which died in the swampy Okavango Delta still had their tusks intact, suggesting that they aren’t ivory poaching-driven deaths.
A flight over the delta in May by Elephants Without Borders researchers first spotted 169 carcasses; that number jumped to 356 in June when the conservationists took another flight over the area again.
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