Botswana officials state they have solved the mystery of what killed over 300 elephants in the country between April and June.
The mass die-off of endangered elephants caused alarm in animal lovers all over the world, leading to the demand for answers to prevent more deaths from happening.
According to government officials, the poor elephants ingested toxins that were produced by cyanobacteria … a bacteria found in water.
There are reports that 70% of the elephants died near seasonal watering areas that contained algal blooms.
Officials still have more questions … such as why were only elephants affected …. and why that particular area?
One of the thoughts is that elephants are more susceptible to the toxins because they spend much more time bathing … and drinking large amounts of water.
There are still a lot of unknowns, however.
Although the watering holes tested positive for cyanobacteria, it doesn’t prove it was the cause of the elephant deaths.
Tests that would prove cyanobacteria as the cause of death require tissue samples that are kept in strict conditions and delivered in a short amount of time … and, unfortunately, this wasn’t made available in Botswana.
Watering holes will now be tested for algal blooms to reduce the risk of future mass die-offs.
There are a number of hypotheses officials have that require more investigation, but hopefully, we get more answers soon.
At Karmagawa, we are heartbroken over the deaths of these gentle giants which are already endangered due to poaching.
We even started a fundraiser to help organizations that are doing good work to protect elephant populations.
Would you like to join us by donating?
100% of funds will go to charities like …
Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, which protects Africa’s wildlife and preserves habitats. Their projects include anti-poaching, safeguarding the natural environment, enhancing community awareness, addressing animal welfare issues, providing veterinary assistance to animals in need, rescuing and hand-rearing elephants, and more.
Trunks Up preserves and protects the critically endangered Asian elephant. They enable thousands of elephants to live free from abuse and deprivation so that the Asian Elephant population can thrive.
IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare) works around the globe to rescue and rehabilitate animals, end illegal wildlife trade, and secure critical landscapes. They collaborate with local communities to create sustainable livelihoods that benefit both people and animals.
Share our information with friends and family so that they can help the elephants, too.
The elephants need people like us in order to simply survive. Donate here.
Do you think the mystery of the mass die-off of elephants in Botswana is solved? Leave a comment below.