What Caused 100 Hippos in Namibia to Die?

By Nikki Addison

Bwabwata National Park has lost a large number of its hippos in the past few days.

Over one hundred hippos have died in Bwabwata National Park, Namibia – and environment minister Pohamba Shifeta suspects it is due to an anthrax outbreak.

“The cause of death is unknown but the signs so far show that it could be anthrax,” Shifeta said. “Our veterinary services are currently working at the area to determine the cause of death. Once we have the results of the cause of death than we can decide on the way forward.”

A bacterial disease caused by Bacillus anthraces, anthrax is commonly connected to dry climates like those found in Africa. Shifeta added that the death toll could rise from the suspected epidemic, as crocodiles eating the hippo carcasses could catch the infection that way.

The recent deaths have lowered the Namibian hippo population to approximately 1200.


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