Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Onions, Elephants and Crocodiles.

Poor old elephants in Zimbabwe are really getting it in the neck. I see one just jumped all over some woman and her daughter in Hwange national park the other day. Turns out they were doing walkies. Not a good idea, especially since it turns out that the Safari firms have been kidnapping baby elephants to train as people carriers. Elephants don’t like that. Still, the Zimbabwe reporting is interesting…

Harare - A British woman and her 10-year-old daughter were killed by a rogue elephant while her husband escaped unhurt during a hunting tour in southwestern Zimbabwe, state media reported on Tuesday.

The state-controlled Herald quoted an unnamed parks and wildlife authority official as saying Veronica Poker, 47, and her daughter Shallot died on the spot when they were attacked by a lone elephant which is believed to have been wounded, during a guided tour in the Hwange game park on Saturday.

It happened on Saturday mid-morning "when the three tourists who were accompanied by a tour guide were watching a lone elephant while they were hiding behind an anthill," the newspaper quoted the official as saying.

"It is reported that the elephant could have seen the people and started charging towards them."

He said wardens were deployed following the tragedy to track the elephant believed to be wounded.

"Wounded elephants are those that are normally aggressive," the official told the newspaper.

The official said the guide fired a shot to scare away the elephant but it kept on charging towards the touring party and trampled the guide who suffered a fractured pelvis before turning on the tourists.

National police spokesperson Wayne Bvudzijena referred questions to the police commander for the Matabeleland north province who could not be reached for comment. (That’s because he is busy organising more beatings for cheeky members of the opposition party)

Sounds like they got themselves in a right pickle!

Maybe the poor girl’s name was really Charlotte?

Meanwhile, over at Lake Kariba, the ellies are getting shot to feed the crocs. Turns out the government wants to expand/increase the croc farms. Now back in the good old days, when I visited the croc farm, the baby crocs were fed kapenta (fresh water sardines) and the big mothers were fed smelly hitchhikers from Denmark. Only kidding. Actually they were given mostly chickens. Now of course, the kapenta industry is in ruins and the chickens have flown the coop. BUT there are plenty of elephants wandering around still, so let’s feed them to the crocs.

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