HARARE : Zimbabwe is to allow bow and arrow hunting of buffalo in a bid to capture a growing part of the international sports trophy hunting market, an official said Saturday.

''As part of diversifying our product we have now introduced bow and arrow hunting - to attract more people to Zimbabwe,'' said Parks and Wildlife Management Authority spokesman Tinashe Farawo.

The market for wealthy hunters from the  developed world seeking a trophy specimen for display is becoming more competitive.

Earlier this week, Botswana ended a five year ban on elephant hunting, sparking protests from conservationists who reject the argument that it will help provide money for poor countries and lead to better management of animal stocks.

''What we are doing is to capture that market, so that we can also have more revenue and put the money back into conservation, improve our economy, create more jobs,'' Farawo said.

Zimbabwe boasts a healthy population of buffalo running into hundreds of thousands.

Earlier this month, the government said it had sold nearly 100 elephants to China and Dubai for a total price of $2.7 million over six years, citing over population in the national parks. [AFP]


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