Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (Zimparks) said on Wednesday that it found more elephant corpses, raising the toll to 22 dead animals.
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The wildlife agency disclosed the carcasses were found on Tuesday and Wednesday in the Pandamasuwe Forest, an intermediate location between Hwange National Park and Victoria Falls.
Zimparks specialists foreclosed poaching as the death cause because all carcasses were found untouched, with intact tusks.
“We suspect it is the same causes as the first group, and we are also looking at taking samples to other independent laboratories so that we can broaden our investigations,” said Zimparks spokesperson Tinashe Farawo.
In late August, Zimbabwe reported the finding of 11 carcasses in the same location and circumstances. The specimens were young, under 18-years-old.
The mysterious deaths mirror the strange losses recorded in July in Botswana, allegedly due to a natural toxin, lethal for the animals.
In 2019, over 200 elephants died in Zimbabwe because of drought and starvation. Conservationists estimate there are about 80,000 specimens, but the number can be lower due to illegal hunting and the destruction of their habitats.