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Strategies to manage human
activity in deserts
3
[3]
National Parks
Protected Areas in Namibia
Parks and reserves are declared under the Nature Conservation Ordinance No. 4, 1975, as
amended in 1987. Definitions used include national park, game park, national recreation area,
nature reserve. Private nature reserves may be proclaimed on privately-owned land. As a
result of the growth in tourist numbers over the past decade, a national tourism strategy has
been developed to identify needs and to coordinate further development.
Following independence, the Ministry of Wildlife, Conservation and Tourism was formed. The
aims of this ministry, which follow the objectives of the UNEP World Conservation Strategy
are:
to maintain and rehabilitate essential ecological processes and life support
systems;
to conserve biological diversity and to ensure the sustainable utilisation of
resources.
Within the Ministry of Environment and Tourism, the Directorate of Park and Wildlife
management is responsible for the management of protected areas in order to:
maintain the infrastructure in parks and recreation areas at a standard that
will
ensure maximum benefit for tourists;
strictly enforce the Law and Regulations and maintain tourist control in a fair and
decent manner.
Designations:
*National park: The purposes of such areas are for the propagation, protection, study
and conservation therein of wild animal life, wild plant life and objects of geological,
ethnological, archaeological, historical and other scientific interest and for the benefit
and enjoyment of the inhabitants of the Territory and other persons. Prohibited
activities include the production of wood or the collection of any forest produce.
*Game park: Game parks, including those which are privately owned, are not
maintained for hunting.
Etosha National Park is one of Southern Africa's finest and most important Game Reserves.
Etosha Game park was declared a National Park in 1907 and covering an area of 22 270 square
km, it is home to 114 mammal species, 340 bird species, 110 reptile species, 16 amphibian
species and, surprisingly, one species of fish! Etosha is dominated by a massive mineral pan. The
pan is part of the Kalahari Basin, the floor of which was formed around 1000 million years ago.
The Etosha Pan covers around 25% of the National Park. The game viewing in Etosha National
Park is excellent, the best time being from May to September - the cooler months in Namibia.