Sumbawanga — A NON-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Wildlife Conservation Society, is currently carrying out research in Kalambo River Forest in the newly established Kalambo District, Rukwa Region, in an effort to identify different species of animals including baboons living in the forest as well as their population.
The least known Kalambo River Forest is an important corridor for wild animals when migrating from Rwafi Forest Reserve to the neighbouring Zambia and on their way to their sanctuary at Katavi National Park in the neighbouring Katavi Region.
Explaining the importance of such animal migration, the Tanzania Forest Services (TFS), in Southern Highland Zone , Mr Bruno Mallya, said that of late, a herd of 13 elephants that migrated from the Katavi National Park via Rwafi Forest Reserve was seen in the forest before proceeding to the neighbouring Zambia and later returned to their sanctuary. Mr Mallya further noted that the Kalambo River Forest covers 41,958ha which was officially gazetted as Forest Reserve in 1957.
"The Kalambo River which carries the name of the Forest Reserve has over 15 tributaries and flows into Lake Tanganyika through Kalambo Falls at Kapozwa Village in Kalambo District," added Mr Mallya.
The Kalambo River Forest which is wholly covered with woodland has been divided into three attractive scenarios including mountainous areas, basin as well as grass and streams which is also famous as a highly fertile land with abundant water throughout the year.
"In an effort to enhance its protection we (TFS) have set 150 beehives in the Kalambo River Forest to increase the government income," added Mr Mallya However, he listed several challenges the forest faces such as hard core poachers killing animals by setting snares along the passage used by the migrating animals.