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Plea to rethink Serengeti highway

The Tanzanian government has been urged to rethink plans to build a road through the Serengeti that could potentially disrupt one of the world’s great animal migrations.

The proposed route aims to link the districts of Serengeti and Loliondo to the national road system in the east African country, and boosttransport links between the coast and inland areas to benefit industryand agriculture.

However the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) expressed concern that bisecting the north part of the national park would disrupt the
migration of two million wildebeest and zebra, as well as hitting local people through a loss of income from wildlife tourism.

The ZSL, along with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), has proposed a route further south, saying it would have greater benefits for human populations, and ensure the migrating animals were not cut off from Kenya’s Masai Mara national reserve to the north of Tanzania.

Director of conservation programmes for ZSL Jonathan Baillie said; “A commercial road would not only result in wildlife collisionsand human injuries, but would serve to fragment the landscape and undermine the ecosystem in a variety of ways. To diminish this naturalwonder would be a terrible loss for Tanzania and all future generations.”

 

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