Elephant Database
African Elephant Specialist Group

Southern Africa
Provisional African Elephant Population Estimates: update to 31 Dec 2013

All Years for Southern Africa: 20132007200219981995

Summary Totals for Southern Africa

Data Category Definite Probable Possible Speculative
Aerial or Ground Total Counts22,999000
Direct Sample Counts and Reliable Dung Counts249,61522,53222,5320
Informed Guesses2,44608,2706,154
Other Guesses2,9860014,949
Totals 2013278,04622,53230,80221,103
Totals 2006291,77823,15524,7039,985

Area of Range Covered by Each Data Category (km²)

Data CategoryKnown RangePossible RangeTotal Range
Aerial or Ground Total Counts38,561038,561
Direct Sample Counts and Reliable Dung Counts375,55996,852472,412
Informed Guesses188,78847,787236,575
Other Guesses26,70953227,241
Unassessed Range166,719384,491551,209

Country and Regional Totals and Data Quality

CountryDefiniteProbablePossibleSpeculativeRange Area (km²)% of Regional Range% of Range AssessedIQI1PFS2
Angola818801801110323,270243 .021
Botswana133,45320,81820,8180228,0731768 .601
Malawi1,223218461977,789171 .513
Mozambique16,0923,2406,3335,624320,4022491 .571
Namibia13,6842,8712,8910164,0691249 .421
South Africa20,17004,767030,651288 .712
Swaziland35000500100 1.005
Zambia9,9112,5012,648542170,4661375 .591
Zimbabwe67,9546,9746,97414,73081,228691 .712
Totals278,04622,53230,80221,1031,325,99810058 .501

1IQI: Information Quality Index: This index quantifies overall data quality at the regional level based on the precision of estimates and the proportion of assessed elephant range (i.e. range for which estimates are available). The IQI ranges from zero (no reliable information) to one (perfect information).

2PFS: Priority for Future Surveys, ranked from 1 to 5 (highest to lowest). Based on the precision of estimates and the proportion of national range accounted for by the site in question, PFS is a measure of the importance and urgency for future population surveys. All areas of unassessed range have a priority of 1. See Introduction for details on how the PFS is derived.

Note that totals for the Definite, Probable, and Possible categories are derived by pooling the variances of individual estimates, as described at http://www.africanelephantdatabase.org/reliability. As a result, totals do not necessarily match the simple sum of the entries within a given category.

IUCNSpecies Survival Commission

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