Hippos substantially reduced
The hippopotamus is one of Africa’s best-known wild animals. But poaching and habitat destruction have led to hippos being classified as a endangered or critically endangered species on the International Red List (IUCN). Today, hippos are only found in sub-Saharan Africa. There, ca. 130,000 large hippos and roughly 2,500 pygmy hippos live in the wild.
“A prolonged drought has plagued Botswana for years. The necessary flooding fail to occur more and more. Once huge waterholes shrink to puddles. Without our intervention, they become death traps for hundreds of hippos stuck in the drying mud year after year.“
Lars Gorschlueter, Foundation Founder
Threat through climate change
Climate change and global warming are not just empty, abstract words in Botswana, but a tangible reality every day. Not only for the people, but also – and perhaps above all – for the wildlife that lives there. For years, Botswana has experienced droughts that have caused rivers and waterholes to dry up completely in some cases. Most recently, in 2019, that turned out to be fatal for many hippos in the Nxaraga area. The animals in need to steadily follow the water, literally got stuck due to lack of water and food. Their deaths – an unbearable sight.
168 hippos were still alive in the dried-up lagoon near Nxaraga in December 2019. However, they were stuck there. To save them, we launched an impromptu rescue operation together with the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP) and local companies to replenish the water hole used by the hippos. A supply and control plan was developed: Using a solar watering pump, approximately 46,000 liters of water were pumped into the pool every 10 hours. Also, the animals were provided with sufficient hay bales. It was not until the summer 2020 that they were able to move on again.
After the hippos had migrated on, the water supply was stopped. The equipment can be used by the Nxaraga village community for future projects. A successful project that we were able to complete thanks to tremendous support!
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Artenschutz durch Bildung und Entwicklungsarbeit – auf diesem Ansatz beruhen all unsere Projekte. Wir arbeiten Hand in Hand mit den Menschen in den betroffenen Regionen und ermöglichen einkommensschaffende Maßnahmen dort, wo sie gebraucht werden. Mit unseren Bildungsprojekten bauen wir Brücken zu den kommenden Generationen – so dass Natur- und Artenschutz wieder ein natürlicher Bestandteil des Lebens werden.