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Namibia loses 9 rhinos, 1 elephant to poaching since January | March 29, 2020

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WINDHOEK: Namibia has lost nine rhinos and one elephant to poaching since the beginning of the year, the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism said Monday.

Ministry spokesperson Romeo Muyunda said poaching took place inside private owned farms and the country’s national parks, with the latest incident taking place last Friday when one elephant was poached. Two suspects have since been arrested.

The ministry official did not say how many rhinos and elephants were poached during the comparable period last year as he said he was out of office.

“In general, we have seen a steady decrease in rhino and elephant poaching in the past 3 years,” Muyunda said.

Rhino poaching in Namibia dropped to 41 individuals killed in all of 2019 compared with nearly 72 during the same period in 2018, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism said last December.

Namibia has the second largest population of white rhinos in the world after South Africa and, according to NGO Save the Rhino, it holds one-third of the world’s remaining black rhinos.

Poaching in Namibia has yo-yoed since peaking in 2015 at 95 rhinos, falling to 60 in 2016, 36 in 2017 and then going up to 72 again in 2018.