The email from operator Kgori Safaris arrived the morning of April 20, stating that hunting is officially banned in Botswana from 2013, except for plains game on game ranches and a few elephants that will be auctioned outside the wilderness areas in the cattle areas and two areas with limited quota for 2013 namely, CH 1 and NG 41. As this isn't the first time we've received such news over the past four years, I immediately called Debbie Peake with the Botswana Wildlife Management Association to find out what is going on.
Peake confirmed that the Botswana government is restricting hunting further in 2013, as we previously reported they would. Next year, numerous concession periods come to an end, and, as we told you in January 2010 (see Article ID 2376 in our database), they will become photographic/eco-tourism concessions. You'll recall that in 2010 six concessions in the Chobe and Okavango regions had been tendered for non-consumptive use, and a number of operators were left with hunting leases that would expire over the following three years. I also told you in February 2011 that the way elephant hunting would continue in Botswana would be changing significantly. The government intended to allow hunting to continue under special dispensations as a means of management. (See Article ID 2593.) I also told you that hunting for plains game, buffalo and leopard would continue on private ranches but was severely curtailed elsewhere. The Botswana Wildlife Management Association (BWMA) has confirmed all of this again in the official statement Peake sent me and that I included in the Email Extra Bulletin we sent you.
Peake went on to tell me over the telephone that the Botswana Wildlife Management Association is still in negotiations to open elephant hunting in other areas. They are hopeful and determined to work something out, she said. "Dialog is........(continued)