Chisango and Maposa
Greener Journal of Ecology and Ecosolution, vol. 3 (1), pp. 001-012, April 2016.
ISSN: 2384-6356 © 2013-2016 Greener Journals
Manuscript Number: 011916014
Effects of Human-Wildlife Conflict on Agricultural Productivity, Post Fast Track Land Reform Program in Zimbabwe: A Case of Gwayi Conservancy and Resettlement Areas Bordering Hwange National Park
1Chisango Future Fortune T and 2*Maposa Angela
1 Senior Lecturer Faculty of Agriculture, Zimbabwe Open University, Zimbabwe.
The study aimed at investigating reasons for Human Wildlife Conflict and its impact on agricultural productivity, particularly post Fast Track Land Reform in Zimbabwe, with reference to Gwayi conservancy which borders Hwange national park in Matabeleland North province. Fifty farmers were purposively selected from a ward’s total population of 620 resettled households to generate primary data through a questionnaire and interviews. Secondary data was gathered from records and archival material from responsible authorities such as parks and wild life authority and its partners. The study examined issues relating and emanating from human – wildlife conflict, its effect especially those caused by livestock and crop destruction, sophisticated poaching such as cyanide poisoning: its magnitude and possible effects on extinction of endangered species in Zimbabwe. Generated and analyzed data revealed that for as long as human settlement expand into sanctuaries meant to be the natural habitat for wildlife, finding lasting solution to human-wildlife conflict will pose serious challenges, and aggravating the problem will be the incessant destruction of the environment impacting negatively on agricultural productivity as wild life and man compete for cultivated crops and livestock for food resources. It was therefore recommended that the need for conservation should be emphasized and consolidated through habitat management training and educating the new settlers on the need for conservation and economic gains attached to wildlife, such as tourism and game meat marketing which should foster tolerance and coexistence between wildlife and the new farmers.
Key words: Human Wildlife Conflict, agricultural productivity, Fast Track Land Reform, records and archival material, sophisticated poaching, cyanide poisoning, sanctuaries, natural habitat.
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