Nestled on the border with Ethiopia, Sudan’s Al Dinder National Park boasts the country’s most diverse wildlife, but as human invasion increases, rangers face daily struggles to protect it. ..
Over 10,000 square kilometers (3,800 square miles), 400 kilometers (250 miles) southeast of Khartoum, the park is Sudan’s largest and adjacent to Ethiopia’s Aratash National Park.
Freshwater lakes are scattered throughout the park’s forests and savanna, making it an important flyway for migratory birds.
The area was sparsely populated when the park was first declared as a reserve under the rule of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudanese Empire in 1935.
And as the traditional rangelands of herders were cultivated, they increasingly invaded the park in search of pasture.
Among the most devastated species, according to Mohammed, are giraffes that have disappeared from the park in the face of habitat loss and other environmental factors.
Villagers say they are doing their best to comply with park restrictions, but add that they desperately need more land to feed themselves.
He complains that some regulations are “very difficult and unrealistic” to follow in growing villages.
“That’s not enough for us,” he said, “because the reserves are vast, it doesn’t hurt to give us more space.”
“Expansion to the village will do great harm to the reserve, disrupt wildlife and reduce their resources,” Mohammed said.
Human invasion also interferes with park wildlife in other ways.
Rangers patrol the rugged terrain in search of offenders. Violators may face heavy fines or up to 6 months’ imprisonment depending on the breach.
But not everything is lost. Wildlife research directors at the park say sightings of hyenas, lions, and small cats like genes and servals are especially common at night.
Despite all the challenges, the reserve “was able to remain pristine and maintain the wilderness,” Mohammed boasts.
mz / kir / fz / oho
Rangers fight human invasion in Sudan’s largest park
Source link Rangers fight human invasion in Sudan’s largest park