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Just south of the Sahara Desert and above the fertile rainforest regions lies the Zakouma Ecosystem. A three and a half hour flight from N’Djamena the capital of Chad, Zakouma National Park is a safe haven for the wildlife of Central and West Africa. But this hasn’t always been the case.
In 2010 poaching was rife within the park. Consequently this led to a huge drop in elephant numbers which fell from 4,000 individuals to 450. African Parks assumed management of Zakouma in 2013. They set up networks within the communities and applied stringent law enforcement… all of which all had a positive affect. Furthermore, by 2016, elephant numbers had risen to 550, the first rise in over 10 years!
Today, elephant are fitted with satellite collars so the ranger teams can monitor movement. Local communities are working with African Parks to protect the wildlife and if they see any suspicious activity they inform the park authorities. As a result there’s also been a rise in giraffe, roan antelope, Lelwel’s Hartebeest and buffalo numbers.
Why go on safari to Zakouma…
The park is major conservation area for wildlife and those serious adventurers among you who like to push the boundaries rave about it… We rave about it …
- Virtually unexplored with few visitors
- the last remaining savannah ecosystem of Central Africa
- excellent wildlife concentrations with the Big 4
- large elephant herds of more than 500 individuals – before African Parks’ involvement poaching was a huge issue with 95% loss. Elephant numbers fell from 4,000 in 2002 to 450 in 2010 but satallite collars fitted to the individuals allow the Park’s team to monitor the elephant
- 50% of the Kordofan giraffe population lives in Zakouma.
- finally, we recommend the park for birding enthusiasts – the pans attract thousands of birds including black-crowned cranes
The future of Zakouma Chad
- Plans are afoot to make improvements to education within the park by extending the Elephant and Secko school programme. This concentrates on the dispersed local population the the challenges they face.
- New Zakouma supported ‘Elephant Schools’ have been built, which, in 2016 saw 1,267 children in education.
- The reintroduction of black rhino and the creation of an elephant corridor beyond the park are priority conservation projects. These that are already under planning and investigation.
High profile exposure
- Prince Harry Officially Appointed President of African Parks. Announced publicly on Wednesday December 27th, 2017.
- J. Michael Fay Conservationist and Michael Nichols, National Geographic photographer visited the national park in 2006. (In the wet season.) You can view their report at mediastorm.com. Well worth a watch!
- In 2013 there was just one elephant under three years of age, today there are 85: So here’s an update from the BBC – December 2017. Home to one of the biggest single herds of elephants anywhere in Africa.
Drop us a line if you’d like to talk to one of our safari specialists.
- Find out more about Zakouma from our 2014 safari update
- More about the dozen African Parks’ wilderness areas across Africa (2017)
- Zakouma on Facebook – Hot and intense with few visitors
- More about Chad
(Image courtesy Michael Viljoen African Parks)
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