Conservation Landscapes

Creating a sustainable landscape for wildlife, people and our ecosystems

Conservation Landscapes

Conservation areas like Gonarezhou National Park are directly impacted by the areas around them, both positively and negatively. Edge effects, mostly driven by land change can have a serious influence on conservation efforts within a park. Despite this, humans are an integral part of the landscape and have been for centuries, equally so the wildlife and the ecosystems and processes on which we all depend. Thus, effective and sustainable conservation requires scale beyond just the Parks borders in order to safeguard the ecosystem services, restore natural processes and uplift communities around the Park. Our connectivity strategy takes 3 main approaches:

Landscape Connectivity: Gonarezhou, through its wildlife gaps, provides landscape connectivity for wildlife by linking three different ecosystems. Most wildlife that moves within the GLTCA have utilized the existing corridors as a passage.  Over the years, the Sengwe-Tshipise corridor has proved to be a successful trans-highway solution for elephants, wild dogs and even lions that cross from Kruger National Park into Gonarezhou and vice versa.  Wildlife corridors inside Zimbabwe and as part of the Transfrontier initiative are critical for ecosystem resilience, and options for their viability and long-term prospects need to be actively pursued.   Linkages to Banhine and Zinave National Parks are seen explicitly as offering opportunities to preserve landscape-level ecosystem processes.

Cross-Border Tourism: As part of international cooperation, along with interregional, transitional and transfrontier cooperation, cross-border tourism shares the same historical and cultural traditions and attractive natural landscapes, such is the case with us- Gonarezhou National Park, Kruger National Park and Limpopo National Park.  In this case, all three national parks can benefit from cooperation by creating greater diversity and differentiation of a range of tourism and environmental products while creating economies of scale and promoting more effectively.

Community Development: In Zimbabwe, the Gonarezhou is primarily enclosed by community land adjacent to the Malilangwe Trust to the north and the Malipati Safari Area to the south.  Some of the top CAMPFIRE sites in Zimbabwe lie along the border of Gonarezhou and offer communities the opportunity to benefit from wildlife, be active stewards of the land, and share wildlife conservation and management responsibility.

Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area

Gonarezhou National Park is a core part of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park (GLTP) connecting to the Kruger National Park in South Africa via the Sengwe-Tshipise Corridor and the Limpopo National Park in Mozambique. The treaty was signed in 2002 by the heads of state of Zimbabwe, Mozambique and South Africa, with the aim of creating a transnational park covering an area of over 30,000 square kilometers.  The transfrontier park served as the first steps towards establishing a dynamic conservation landscape aimed at fostering collaboration and alliances in conservation, enhancing and restoring ecosystem processes and enhancing socio-economic development in the areas around these parks. The GLTP formed the cores of the broader Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area (GLTFCA), a pan-African conservation area spanning over 100,000 square kilometers and incorporating the core GLTP as well as a mosaic of communal areas and privately owned lands.


Black rhino - Malilangwe. Photo credit - Mark SaundersNews

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