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A combination photo shows dead elephants in Okavango Delta, Botswana May-June, 2020. PHOTOGRAPHS OBTAINED BY REUTERS

Hundreds of Botswana elephant deaths a mystery as official says it’s not poachers

Hundreds of elephants have died mysteriously in Botswana’s famed Okavango Delta, the head of the wildlife department said Thursday, ruling out poaching as the tusks were found intact. The landlocked southern African country has the world’s largest elephant population, estimated to be around 130,000.

“We have had a report of 356 dead elephants in the area north of the Okavango Delta and we have confirmed 275 so far,” Cyril Taolo, the acting director of the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, told AFP in a text message.

He said the cause of the deaths was yet to be established with anthrax having been ruled out.

“We do not suspect poaching since (the) animals were found with tusks,” he said.

Author: AFP/CBS News
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