Dr. Gerd Müller, Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development of the Federal Republic of Germany handed over a Husky aircraft to Prof. Jumanne Maghembe, the Tanzanian Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism.
The aircraft will be deployed by FrankfurtZoological Society  (FZS) in close cooperation with the Tanzanian Wildlife Management Authority (TAWA) for surveillance of wildlife in the Selous Game Reserve and to support the fight against poaching.
The German Minister addressed the guests of the handover ceremony at Matambwe Airstrip in the
Selous: “Poaching threatens biodiversity in many of Africa’s remaining wilderness areas and
undermines security of nations and the livelihoods of people,” said Minister Müller.
“Handing this aircraft over to the Tanzanian authorities and FZS is an important cornerstone of our longstanding support for the Selous Game Reserve and the adjacent communities.”
“For a large area like the Selous Game Reserve, one of the largest uninhabited protected areas of
Africa, aerial surveillance is vital,” said Minister Maghembe.
He thanked the German government for the support in countering the recent upsurge in poaching. “This aircraft will also help the Tanzania Wildlife Management Authority carrying out wildlife and habitat monitoring in the Selous as one of Tanzania’s biodiversity hotspots of global relevance,” Maghembe added.
The group visited the Rufiji River in the Selous Game Reserve to discuss the conservation challenges
on-site. They also met with representatives of the private sector to explore ways to combine wildlife
conservation and sustainable tourism.
The German Ambassador Egon Kochanke underlined that “The Selous Game Reserve is not only one
of the largest protected areas in Africa but also the centrepiece of the new Tanzania Wildlife
The area has been hit very hard by poachers: Between 2009 and 2014, the population of
approximately 45,000 elephants at that time has been decimated to approximately 15,000. Today, all
of Tanzania is estimated to have about 45,000 elephants, 60% less than in 2009.
“Poaching is a severe threat to biodiversity,” said Christof Schenk, CEO of Frankfurt Zoological
Society, “not only because it can lead to local extinctions of targeted species like elephant and rhino,
but because their disappearance can harm the ecosystem altogether. Frankfurt Zoological Society is
committed to contribute to halting the deterioration of the Selous.”
In 1982, the Selous was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Today, the Selous is regarded
as a World Heritage Site ‘in danger’. By UNESCO standards, extraction of mineral resources and largescale land use change are prohibited. “Now is the time to enhance protection of the area to enable wildlife populations to regrow and to restore the secured status of the World Heritage Site,“ says