Zambia has one of the most diverse wildlife populations in the world thanks to the wide variety of habitats. Although there are no mountainous regions, there are lakes, swamps, vast flood plains, large permanent rivers, high rainfall plateaus, vast miombo woodlands, Kalahari sand and expansive grasslands which attract nearly three hundred different mammals and seven hundred and fifty bird species.
Zambia’s Protected Areas cover over 77,000 square miles or 30% of the country’s total landmass in the form of 19 National Parks and 36 Game Management Areas.
The Game Management Areas or GMAs, are tourist hunting concessions that were opened up in a number of tribal lands in the 1970’s. This created a revenue stream as well as a supply of meat for the local communities. The establishment of GMAs created buffer zones between the various National Parks and rural communities.
Game Management Areas are classed as Prime, Secondary and Depleted according to game variety and density and the position of the area relative to the National Parks.
GMA’s are leased to Zambian-registered safari hunting operators for a period of 10 years. These operators are responsible for both managing the GMA’s and protecting the interests of the resident communities.
This 18-minute movie looks at an interesting experiment in wildlife conservation with a safari operator and the Kaindu community.