In a recent wildlife translocation, 45 Cape buffalos were moved from Tembe Elephant Park in South Africa to Mozambique’s Maputo National Park. However, the team faced many unexpected obstacles, which turned the journey into quite an adventure.

Watch this video to see Part 1 of the buffalo translocation.

Tembe Elephant Park is located in Kwa-Zulu Natal in South Africa and Mozambique and forms an important component of the Usuthu-Tembe-Futi Transfrontier Conservation Area that links the reserve up with Maputo National Park via the Futi Corridor. Thanks to a healthy ecosystem, the buffalo population is thriving and growing well. Tembe is moving some of these mighty bovines to Maputo National Park to prevent overgrazing, which can have severe implications for smaller grazers.

In Maputo, these 45 new additions will bolster the existing buffalo population and help to further improve the health of grasslands. These large grazers specialise in eating tall, coarse grasses, which many of the smaller grazers are unable to reach and digest. As large herds of buffalo bulk graze across the landscape, they provide access to the shorter, more palatable grasses that the smaller herbivores need to survive.

Peace Parks Foundation has been working in partnership with Mozambique’s National Administration for Conservation Areas (ANAC) to help restore Maputo National Park’s ecosystem through an extensive rewilding programme. The first animal translocation took place 12 years ago, and since then, nearly 5 000 animals have been reintroduced to the park, including 11 species that had become locally extinct. 

Together with effective protection efforts throughout the park, wildlife numbers have blossomed, piquing much interest from visitors travelling to the region. Peace Parks Foundation and its partners have continued to expand tourism development throughout the park, ensuring that the accommodation available caters to tourists of every type. This includes high-end luxury lodges, middle-of-the-range eco-friendly chalets, and remote 4×4 campsites for those looking for a little more adventure. With wildlife now thriving under the protection of Maputo National Park’s dedicated rangers and tourism development plans well underway, this incredible area will provide employment opportunities for the local communities as well as contribute to Africa’s rich biodiversity.