Elephant Database
African Elephant Specialist Group

Zambia
2016 African Elephant Status Report

All Years for Zambia: 201620132007200219981995

Summary Totals for Zambia

Estimates from SurveysGuesses% Known and
Possible Range
Area (km2)
Survey categoryEstimate± 95% CLFromTo
Aerial Total Counts850.1107
Aerial Sample Counts21,7614,70444.575,884
Informed Guesses1214514516.327,780
Degraded Data1691691.01,691
Totals 201521,9674,703214314  
Totals 200622,2515,891870870  
Assessed Range61.9105,461
Unassessed Range38.165,005
Total Range100170,466

Summary Totals for Zambia

Data Category Definite Probable Possible Speculative
Aerial or Ground Total Counts85000
Direct Sample Counts and Reliable Dung Counts17,0574,7044,7040
Informed Guesses121045100
Other Guesses000169
Totals 201517,2634,7044,749269
Totals 200616,3605,9405,900813

Interpretation of Changes in Estimates from Previous Report

 Estimates from SurveysGuessesArea
Cause of Change Estimate ± 95% CL From To% Known and PossibleTotal
Repeat Survey+933±7,405-56-5643.073,313
New Population+54±76005.79,745
Different Technique-2750000.075
Different Area-1,025±1,408004.06,823
New Guess+29±92-592-4928.113,814
Totals-284±7,539-648-54860.9105,461

Interpretation of Changes in Estimates from Previous Report

Cause of Change Definite Probable Possible Speculative
Repeat Survey+2,277-1,344-1,543-56
New Population+6+48+760
Different Technique-275000
Different Area0-1,025-1,5540
New Guess+82-129-56-488
Totals+2,090-2,450-3,077-544

Interpretation of Changes in Estimates from Previous Report (2007 scaling)

Cause of Change Definite Probable Possible Speculative
Repeat Survey+984-678-577-56
New Population+3+24+280
Different Technique-119000
Different Area0-517-5810
New Guess+35-65-21-488
Totals+903-1,236-1,151-544

Area of Range Covered by Each Data Category (km²)

Data CategoryKnown RangePossible RangeTotal Range
Aerial or Ground Total Counts1070107
Direct Sample Counts and Reliable Dung Counts65,18410,70075,884
Informed Guesses16,76511,01527,780
Other Guesses171,6741,691
Unassessed Range10,60254,40365,005
Totals92,67477,793170,466

Zambia: Elephant Estimates

Cause ofSurvey Details2 Number of Elephants Area Map Location
Input ZoneChange1TypeReliab.YearEstimate95% C.L. SourcePFS3 (km²) Lon. Lat.
+ Bangweulu SystemNGOD201545Willems, pers. comm., 2016115,115 30.2E 12.0S
NGOD201545Willems, pers. comm., 201615,115 30.2E 12.0S
+ Chete and Sekula IslandsRSATA200854Simukonda, 2009432 27.5E 17.4S
RSATA200853Simukonda, 200925 27.5E 17.4S
RSATA20081Simukonda, 20097 27.5E 17.4S
Kafue Ecosystem
+ Kafue Game Management AreasRSASB20151,876 2,064DNPW, 2016122,800 25.9E 15.3S
RSASB20151,876 2,064DNPW, 201622,800 25.9E 15.3S
+ Kafue National Park RSASB20154,813 2,265DNPW, 2016122,230 25.9E 15.3S
RSASB20154,813 2,265DNPW, 201622,230 25.9E 15.3S
+ Kotakota Game Ranch-ATE199119Tembo, pers. comm., 1993415 28.0E 16.8S
-ATE199119Tembo, pers. comm., 199315 28.0E 16.8S
Lower Zambezi
+ Lower Zambezi EcosystemRSASB2015973 589DNPW, 201621,145 29.7E 14.0S
RSASB2015973 589DNPW, 20161,145 29.7E 14.0S
+ Lower Zambezi Game Management AreasRSASB2015153 172DNPW, 201621,383 29.5E 15.7S
RSASB2015153 172DNPW, 20161,383 29.5E 15.7S
Luangwa Ecosystem
+ Luambe National ParkNPASB201554 77DNPW, 20163344 29.7E 14.0S
NPASB201554 77DNPW, 2016344 29.7E 14.0S
+ Luangwa Game Management AreasRSASB20155,869 3,108DNPW, 2016116,754 32.2E 12.4S
RSASB20155,869 3,108DNPW, 201616,754 32.2E 12.4S
+ Luano-OE1996150Jachmann, 199618,930 29.6E 14.8S
-OE1996150Jachmann, 19968,930 29.6E 14.8S
+ Lukusuzi National ParkRSASB20150DNPW, 201622,610 29.7E 14.0S
RSASB20150DNPW, 20162,610 29.7E 14.0S
+ North Luangwa National ParkRSASB20154,673 1,788DNPW, 201624,676 29.7E 14.0S
RSASB20154,673 1,788DNPW, 20164,676 29.7E 14.0S
+ South Luangwa National ParkRSASB20153,302 1,194DNPW, 201628,646 29.7E 14.0S
RSASB20153,302 1,194DNPW, 20168,646 29.7E 14.0S
+ West Petauke Game Management AreaDAASD20090WCS Flight Programme, 200928,143 32.1E 12.6S
DAASD20090WCS Flight Programme, 20098,143 32.1E 12.6S
+ Tanganyika EcosystemNGOD2016100 100*Zytkow, pers. comm., 201627,082 30.0E 8.8S
NGOD2016100 100*Zytkow, pers. comm., 20167,082 30.0E 8.8S
+ West Lunga National ParkNGOD201421Tilbury, pers. comm., 201621,684 24.8E 12.8S
NGOD201421Tilbury, pers. comm., 20161,684 24.8E 12.8S
West Zambezi
+ Kazungula LandscapeNPASB20080Simukonda, 200925,112 29.8E 14.2S
NPASB20080Simukonda, 20095,112 29.8E 14.2S
+ Mosi-oa-Tunya National ParkDTATA200831Simukonda, 2009467 25.8E 17.9S
DTATA200831Simukonda, 200967 25.8E 17.9S
+ Sioma NgweziRSASB201548 78DNPW, 201624,482 29.7E 14.0S
RSASB201548 78DNPW, 20164,482 29.7E 14.0S
+ West ZambeziNPOD20150WWF Zambia, 201627,143 23.7E 17.0S
NPOD20150WWF Zambia, 20167,143 23.7E 17.0S

* Range of informed guess

1Key to Causes of Change (only tracked since 2007): DA: Different Area; DD: Data Degraded; DT: Different Technique; NA: New Analysis; NG: New Guess; NP: New population; PL: Population Lost; RS: Repeat Survey (RS ́ denotes a repeat survey that is not statistically comparable for reasons such as different season); –––: No Change

2Key to Survey Types: AC: Aerial Count, not specified; AS: Aerial Sample Count; AT: Aerial Total Count; DC: Dung Count; EX: Extrapolation from GIS; GD: Genetic Dung Count; GS: Ground Sample Count; GT: Ground Total Count; IG: Informed Guess; IR: Individual Registration; OG: Other Guess. Survey Type is followed by an indicator of survey quality, ranked from 1 to 3 (best to worst). Survey Reliability is keyed A-E (best to worst) as outlined in this table.

3PFS: 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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