Cape Town - An African elephant was found dead with two gunshot wounds in the Namibian Bwabwata National Park in the very north of SA's neighbouring country. The elephant carcass was found by villagers at the Muit’jiku village of Kavango East in the Buffalo core area of Bwabwata West on Easter Friday, last week.
According to the Namibian Police in Kavango East no arrest was yet made but investigations were underway. Detective Chief Inspector Ewald Kavara told New Era News
in Namibia that “A case of hunting special protected game was opened on Saturday at the Divundu police station".
The initial police investigation found two gunshot entry and exit wounds in the carcass which made investigators suspect it was illegally shot.
The elephant had its tusks intact as the poachers appear to have hurriedly left the scene of the poaching after they were possibly startled before they could cut the tusks from the animal.
The villagers were given the elephant's meat to eat after the police concluded their inspection of the poached animal.
Namibia has in recent years seen an upsurge in elephant and rhino poaching prompting the government to deploy teams of Namibian Defence Force (NDF) soldiers in the worst affected parks, besides drones mounted with surveillance cameras.
Bwabwata suffered heavily from poaching during the 1970s and 1980s, but wildlife numbers recovered significantly since proper management was been implemented.
Last year, however, 33 elephants were poached in Bwabwata, Mudumu and Nkasa Rupara National Parks, which raises concern for the elephant population in the area again.