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Selous Game Reserve

United Republic of Tanzania
Factors affecting the property in 1986*
  • Illegal activities
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1986
Requests approved: 1 (from 1984-1984)
Total amount approved : 10,480 USD
1984 Purchase of a vehicle for Selous Game Reserve (Approved)   10,480 USD
Missions to the property until 1986**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1986

Reports have been received of heavy poaching over the past 2 years in this reserve which has an area larger than Switzerland.

The elephant population declined from 85,000 to 60,000 with 5,000 animals poached in 1985. The decline in black rhinos is even more pronounced with a drop of some 90% to less than 300 today.

The area was visited in April and meetings held with the Warden and Game Department officials. With the assistance of WWF and Frankfurt Zoological Society a census and management review is currently underway and will form the basis of a concerted assistance effort to be prepared in several months time. It should be noted that the Tanzanian Treasury received US$2 million in foreign exchange as revenue from hunting safaris in the Reserve in 1985.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1986
10 COM IX.A.18-19
SOC: Mana Pools, Sapi and Chewore Reserves (Zimbabwe) & Selous Game Reserve (Tanzania)

18. The Committee, when learning of the dramatic increase in poaching reported by IUCN for Mana Pools, Sapi and Chewore Reserves in Zimbabwe and for Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania, recognised that this particular problem should also be approached globally, by stemming the illicit trade in wildlife and especially of elephant tusks and rhinoceros horn. In this regard, the Committee requested that its Chairman contact the Secretariat of the Convention on the Interna­tional Trade of Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES), which has been ratified by many States Parties to the World Heritage Convention, to express the Committee's concern that the illicit trade was severely affecting certain natural World Heritage properties and reques­ting that, measures be taken within the framework of the two Conventions to eradicate poaching in such sites. One member of the Committee suggested also that certain industrialised countries could consider "twinning" arrangements between one of their own natural world heritage sites and a site located in a developing country which did not dispose of sufficient resources for its protection and maintenance. In this connection, IUCN noted that it was currently developing a "twinning" programme for parks which could have many implications for World Heritage proper­ties. Another member of the Committee suggested that Committee members, with the assistance of the Secretariat as appropriate, should contact national authorities in particular through their representation in Paris, to explore the suitability of bilateral assistance to improve the protection and maintenance of natural World Heritage properties reported by IUCN as being under threat. As concerns Selous Game Reserve in particular, the Committee indicated its willingness to set aside a contribution from the World Heritage Fund towards a project aimed at enhancing the protection of this site.

19. In concluding the debate, the Committee decided that the following measures should be taken:

a) that the Chairman would write to the CITES Secretariat to explore the means to use both conventions to mitigate the situation in Selous National Park (Tanzania) and Mana Pools, Sapi and Chewore Reserves (Zimbabwe) in particular, and for combating poaching in natural World Heritage properties in general;

b) the Secretariat should contact the authorities of Tanzania and Zimbabwe (in Paris and in the capitals) respectively to develop, in cooperation with IUCN (and other'appropriate organi­sations and institutions) suitable projects for technical cooperation under the World Heritage Fund, and in parallel, to study the possibility of inscribing Selous National Park and Mana Pools, Sapi and Chewore Reserves respectively on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

10 COM XI.37
Requests for International Assistance

37. Given the serious situation of the Selous Game Reserve (United Republic of Tanzania), as reported under the section of this report on the conservation status of natural World Heritage properties, the Committee requested the Secretariat to inform the Tanzanian authorities of its willingness to allocated financial support under the 1987 budget to a project aimed at improving the protection of this site.

No draft decision proposed

Report year: 1986
United Republic of Tanzania
Date of Inscription: 1982
Category: Natural
Criteria: (ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 2014-present
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 10COM (1986)

* : The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.