Botswana Declares Countrywide Ban on Hunting

The Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism in Botswana announced on Thursday it will enforce a ban on all hunting in the country effective January 1, 2014 saying that wildlife populations are declining.

Botswana, a land-locked country in southern Africa, boasts roughly one-third of the world’s elephant population, or about 130,000 of the large herbivores. Its large national parks and the Kalahari Desert are home to lions, giraffes, wild dogs, antelopes, buffalo, wildebeests and more. The country is a premier destination for safaris.

At 12 percent of the annual GDP, tourism is the country’s second biggest industry after diamond mining, but tourism doesn’t outweigh its interpretation of conservation, according to the ministry.

The ministry claimed that hunting had only contributed a minimal…

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