A 35-year-old farmer was trampled to death by an elephant in Southern Tanzania’s District of Tunduru, local leaders said on Wednesday.
The deceased has been identified as Zuberi Maocha of Mishaje village in Tunduru District, Ruvuma Region, about 1,205 km from Tanzania’s commercial capital Dar es Salaam.
Wema Waziri, Mishaje village chairperson, said that the farmer was trying to ward off the elephants, which stormed his maize farm in the area close to Selous Game Reserve, one of the largest faunal reserves of the world, located in the south of Tanzania.
According to the village leader, the incident occurred on Tuesday at around 1 p.m. local time.
“One of the elephants, which had a calf, charged against Maocha and trampled on him to his death,’’ she said.
Nombo Sandari, a ranger with Chingoli Wildlife Management Area also said: “Before his death, the deceased screamed to seek support from neighbouring farmers but in vain as there was nobody came out to rescue him.’’
He said the elephant strayed from Selous Game Reserve seeking for pastures and water.
Limbega Ally, Tunduru District Acting Wildlife Officer said: “we’ve dispatched a team of 11 rangers into the affected areas to help return all the elephants to their natural environment.’’
In 2017 another farmer was trampled to death by a herd of marauding elephants in the same district.
According to the most recent elephant census, published in June 2015, Tanzania has 43,000 elephants, down from 109,000 in 2009.