Faru Team Burra Update: 01 March 2006

Faru Team Burra Update: 01 March 2006

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Participants:

Alex Macharia – team leader Peter Gitau Peter Wambua John Malonza Samwel Adero Ikutha Mwoni 2 KWS Rangers

Area of operation:

The areas patrolled this month were Ngutuni, Kasigau, Sagalla, Mbulia, Ndii, Irima and Ndara

101 SNARES RECOVERED

FINDINGS.

Operation Findings, Evaluations and Assessments. Critical assessment and Evaluation has shown that conservation’s success is tied to the level of commitment from the surrounding communities and other relevant stake holders. Our most recent findings have shown that most of the snaring is taking place in the ranches and not in the heavily protected National park. We have realized that most of the snares found in the park are old snares whereas those found in the ranches are mostly fresh snares, showing that the snaring activity in these areas is common and frequent.

Ndii, Irima and Ndara are the areas that we visited inside the park boundaries. The rest of the areas are ranches which are found along the park boundary or some Kilometers away. Though some of these areas are not in close proximity to the park they are spill-overs and the animals use them as migratory routes or as territorial range lands. Since human activities such as livestock grazing take place in these areas the poachers camouflage themselves as herdsmen or charcoal burners while they set snares. It is therefore of paramount importance to educate the community about the need to conserve wildlife and their natural heritage. Several ambushes were laid by the Burra de-snaring team laid along the snaring points but unfortunately no poachers were arrested. We have come to the conclusion that with the onset of the rains many people have returned home to tend to their farms. Evidence of poachers. In all the areas that were visited this month the evidence of poachers that we found were the presence of numerous footprints and cuttings that were meant for setting big snares.

British Army Training The de-snaring teams all gathered in Mtito with great enthusiasm and a hope that the skills that they had been given during the last Training course with the British Army could be increased and more skills and information given to them. The skills we are taught are meant to increase our efficiency and service delivery during our operation endeavors.

The training started the day all the teams arrived, with the training regime including physical exercises.

Map Reading was dealt with in detail with the practical part being emphasized. Different teams were sent into the bush with a compass and a map so as to ensure that everyone understood the concepts, it was interesting to see the difficulties each team faced and how they overcame them.
The training was vigorous and rigorous. Discipline was emphasized as the key to successful operations. We are grateful that the Trust continues to equip the de-snaring team members with the skills needed to be successful in the field.
At the end of the Training each de-snaring team member was presented a certificate by the British Army. We would like to thank the Trust and the Royal Marines for taking the time to train us.
We believe that knowledge is power and that information brings reformation. We plan to put all the knowledge we have been given to use during our monthly de-snaring operations.

Community We visited several schools this month with the purpose of educating the children about conservation. A game drive into the park was organized for Gimba Primary School, which is one of the schools in the area that has suffered from elephant attacks.

We therefore felt there was a need for the students to be educated about wildlife, both theoretically and practically, in an effort to erase the negative attitudes that they may have about wildlife.
We are also making arrangements with the education warden to organize a schedule to visit schools on a monthly basis, especially in areas suffering from wildlife invasion. These visits will include wildlife films and lectures.

Report by Alex Macharia