Wildlife Division: Historical Background

Historical Background

The Wildlife conservation in Tanzania dates back in 1891, when laws controlling hunting were first enacted by the German rule. These laws regulated the off take, hunting methods and trade in wildlife, with some endangered species being fully protected. Selous Game Reserve was the first game reserve established in 1905 by the Germans and was gazetted in 1922. Game Reserves were chosen mainly for their concentration of big game rather than their biological diversity.

The British Government established the Game Department in 1921. The role of the game department was to administer game reserves, enforce hunting regulation and protect people and crops from problem animals. Later on Ngorongoro crater and Serengeti Game Reserve were established in 1928 and 1929 respectively.
 
Tanganyika was famous for its species diversity, numbers specifically of big game, and spectacular landscapes. In those early days it attracted a steady stream of wealthy hunters. The tourist hunting industry dates back in 1946 when game controlled areas were established and divided into hunting blocks whereby Professional hunters and their clients could hunt trophy animals.

In 1961 there were three (3) National Parks, nine (9) Game Reserves and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. After independence it was the policy of the Government to continue with the extension of the Game Reserves and National Parks, and many new parks and reserves were gazetted.