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Gombe govt to partner conservationist to boost wildlife

By Bisola Adeyemo

Effort to save wildlife in Gombe state, Governor Inuwa Yahaya said his administration is ready to partner the conservationist cooperation and to develop a hippopotamus colony around the state’s water banks.

Governor Inuwa Yahaya disclosed this while receiving U.S.-based wildlife conservationist Lynne Baker, who paid him a courtesy visit in Gombe on Tuesday to explore ways to harness the huge potential in wildlife conservation and ecotourism in the state, News Agency of Nigeria reports

“Hippopotamus is not common in Nigeria. It is considered threatened in Africa. In the East and South of Africa, they are more common, but in the West of Africa they are not common,” Ms Baker noted.

The wildlife conservationist further noted that it was in that light that the Dadin Kowa community in Gombe became a unique location, being famous for the population of hippopotamuses.

While describing the Dadin Kowa Dam as a site with huge potential in wildlife and bird diversity, she stressed that her research would be a launchpad towards developing eco-tourism in the Dadin Kowa community.

Furthermore, Ms. Baker said she had met with the local communities around the riverbank and was working with international bodies to get a grant to establish the colony.

“This will ensure that the species would be confined within a particular area in Dadin Kowa to protect the animals from extinction,” she noted.

She stressed that the measure would also help boost socio-economic activities of the area, as there would be no challenge of hippopotamus grazing, destroying crops or preventing fishing activities.

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