At Least Five Greater Kudus Died in Undisclosed Disease Outbreak in Ethiopian National Park

By Staff Reporter

Greater-Kudu-EthiopiaNovember 10, 2019 ( -- At least five Greater Kudu have died due to undisclosed outbreak of disease in Kafta Sheraro National Park in eastern part of Tigray regional state of Ethiopia.

Solomon Worku, Public Relations expert with the Ethiopian Wild Life Conservation Authority told that the authority has deployed a team of experts who have confirmed the outbreak of the disease. The team also has taken samples from three infected Greater Kudus to identify the type of disease.

According to the public relations expert, the unidentified disease is affecting the wild animal’s soft part bodies including ears, anus, mouth and other parts that are not covered by hair.

“It is not yet known whether the disease is infectious or transmittable from one Greater Kudu to another or to other animals in the national park,” he said.

Solomon said the authority is not sure yet the Greater Kudus were died from transmittable disease as opposed to reports saying a disease called FMD is killing and infecting Kudus in the park.

Kafta Sheraro National Park borders with Eritrea's Gash-Setit to the north and is traversed by the Tekezé River. A total of 167 mammal species, 95 bird species, and 9 reptile species have been recorded at the site.

The park is home to a trans-boundary African elephant population of about 100, which it shares with Eritrea's Gash-Setit, and which constitutes the northernmost elephant population in Eastern Africa. Other notable wildlife species include lion, leopard, caracal, roan antelope, red-fronted gazelle, and red-necked ostrich conservation is one of the nine areas where elephant founds in Ethiopia.

Experts with the Mekele and Addis Ababa University are taking part in the identification of the disease from samples taken. If the disease is found to be transmittable, infected Greater Kudus will undergo a kind surgical operation to treat them, Solomon added.

Ears of infected Greater Kudus fall down and their movement will be highly restricted, leaving them to go hungry and eventually die.

It is recalled that a wildfire that broke out last week razed nearly 1, 500 hectares of the park which is presumed to have an estimated total area of 600,000 hectares, according to the park office. The cause of the fire was attributed to illegal arable land grabbing.

The fire occurred in places called Worawur, Tebko, Korcheli, and Selingobo and was put under-control with joint efforts of the park rangers and local communities.

Kafta Sheraro is a newly established park in Ethiopia found in the Tigray region which has great wildlife resources. The preliminary wildlife inventory of the park indicates that 318 African elephants and other wild animals.

According to Wikipedia, the greater kudu is a woodland antelope found throughout eastern and southern Africa. Despite occupying such widespread territory, they are sparsely populated in most areas due to declining habitat, deforestation, and poaching.

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