Due to a major drought plaguing Zimbabwe, hundreds of animals will be moved to safety by the country’s wildlife agency. At Mana Pools and Hwange national parks, over 200 elephants have died during the past two months from lack of water. Now, according to the Associated Press, 600 elephants, two prides of lions, a pack of wild dogs, 40 giraffes, 2,000 impalas, and 50 buffalo will be moved to areas where they can get access to water.
According to Tinashe Farawo, a Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority spokesperson, the mission is the largest translocation in the country’s history, and will begin during the rainy season around mid-November. Authorities plan to move the animals from Savé Valley Conservancy in the south to three other reserves in northern Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe has the second-largest elephant population on the African continent with 85,000 elephants. However, according to The Guardian, the national parks and conservation areas can only support 55,000 of them with grazing lands and water, leaving thousands of elephants at risk for starvation and thirst.