Angola: Poaching May Endanger Giant Sable Antelope

by Dec 2, 2010Wildlife News

Luanda — Poaching and poor natural parks might control might reduce the number of existing specimens of the giant sable antelope and destroy its habitat.

This was said Thursday in Luanda by the chancellor of Agostinho Neto University (UAN), Orlando da Mata, Thursday in Luanda.

The official was speaking at the opening of the workshop on Implementation of the Giant Sable Antelope Conservation Project.

Orlando da Mata said that during the period of war in Angola, the protected zones, including the sable antelope habitat suffered the consequences of the conflict, leading to a reduction in the number of specimens of the animal.

In order to reverse the situation, he defended the implementation of the sable antelope conservation project in the Cangandala National Park and Luando Natural Integral Reserve.

He said the intention is to secure a large area of conservation and its expansion to all zones of the park.

The programme is also intended to secure the preservation of other bio-diversity of the region, he also said.

The chancellor also spoke of the need to involve the community in the project, through the elaboration and implementation of environment education programmes, so the members directly participate in the management and protection of the antelope and all bio-diversity.

According to Orlando da Mata, there is also need to establish the needs of the communities and the relation they keep with the sable antelope, thus helping the authorities with the species preservation effort.

He said the project will thus pave the way for protection of the antelope in their areas of origin in a sustainable way, by involving the local populations.

The official also recommended the creation of programmes of scientific research with contribution of higher education and research institutions.

Oralando da Mata recalled that the Giant Sable Antelope is part of the National Strategy and Action Plan on Biodiversity, approved by the Cabinet Council in 2006.

The giant sable antelope, one of the world’s most beautiful species, has its habitat limited within the province of Malanje (north), in the Cangandala National Park and Luando Integral Natural Reserve.

Due to its rarity, the Giant Sable Antelope was included on the list of species under protection (class A) by the Convention on Protection of Africa’s Fauna and Flora, of 1933.

The event is being attended by representatives of Government institutions, high ranking officers of the Angolan Armed Forces, university teachers and students, researchers and other people associated to the animal protection and conservation programmes.