The Botswana government and international experts have started to seriously consider the possibility that a neurotoxin has been responsible for the deaths of around 300 elephants in the past few weeks after other options such as illegal hunting or water shortage have been ruled out.
According to an investigation conducted by The Guardian newspaper this week, 70 percent of the pachyderms that died in the Okavango Delta (in the north of the country) were found intact near places that are considered water tanks Fangs – an indication that they cannot fall victim to ivory tombs. In addition, elephants describe a strange circular pattern before falling down.
According to Acting Permanent Secretary of the Environment Ministry, Oduetse Koboto, the government of Botswana is increasingly tied to the pathogen theory while waiting to publicly announce the results of the body tests next week.
The initial results, released at a press conference hosted by Bloomberg, have ruled out all the common diseases that cause the mass death of elephants, so the country may be exposed to a “new disease”.