ARUSHA, Tanzania, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Tanzania has started re-mapping and demarcating all key national parks, game and forest reserves with the planting of new beacons around the borderlines of the sanctuaries, a senior official said Sunday.
The move is meant to reduce human-wildlife conflicts, taking into accounts that some people have been encroaching into the protected areas for pastures, poaching and illegal logging.
"We are executing the directives from Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa who ordered that boundaries surrounding all national parks, game and forest reserves to be clearly identified and beaconed so as to avert future land conflicts and solve the existing territorial strife between conservationists and villages surrounding protected areas," said Paschal Shelutete, Public Relations Manager for Tanzania National Parks.
He said the exercise would soon go national to cover 14 out of the 16 national parks, with the only exception being the Rubondo and Saa-Nane Islands' National Parks.
Tanzania has set aside nearly 40 percent of the country's area for conservation and the close to 400,000 square kilometers of protected land consists of 16 national parks, 25 game reserves and a number of forest reserves among others.
William Mwakilema, the Chief Conservator at Serengeti National Park, said the sanctuary, established in 1959 as the oldest in Tanzania, had its size and borderlines reviewed in 1968 and the ongoing demarcation is aimed at marking the already identified boundaries.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Serengeti National Park has been increasingly affected by human activities in recent years.