Isaac Maina – Team leader Mutua Koti –Tracker Jacob Dadi –Tracker Feisal Muteti –Vehicle guard 2 KWS rangers
After a month break, Irima proved to have quite a large amount of snares in the area. Our first patrol yielded 77 snares newly planted. 31 that were found inside the park and targeted medium sized animals and larger mammals while the rest, 46 found between the electric fence and railway line and were small in size thus targeting small game like dikdiks and guinnea fowl. Another 16 snares were recovered on the second day on the inner side of the park more than 800m from the boundary line. Another 29 snares were retrieved on the same area after we revisited the area 2 weeks later. Unfortunately our efforts to find the poachers were in vain; the poachers may be starting to adjust to our patrols and therefore we will need to use a different plan of action in order to catch them. We need to make it a priority now to get permission to remove all the abandoned railway line wire and the old telephone wires, as these are what the snares are made out of. Ndii area along the pipeline yielded 92 snares mainly for dikdiks. Again all were newly laid thus a constant pressure has to be employed if we wish to save animals from being caught in them. Other areas that were revisited are Ndara where 111 snares were recovered, Kariokor with14 snares, and Mwakingali with 14 snares. In Ndara the level of logging and charcoal burning is extremely alarming. A total of 355 snares were recovered of varying sizes and types this operation. More and more snaring wires are being extracted from old tires laying along the highway, and owning to the fact that polythene and plastics damped along the highway are equally harmful to wildlife; we started the highway cleanup campaign. It involves the physical removal of litter, loading it to the truck and transportation to the municipal damping site where it's burnt as the only mitigation at hand. The exercise which we normally carry on Saturdays, had its highlight on Saturday 31st,may 2003 when more than 60 participants compost of Manyani K.W.S field school trainees, K.W.S and David Sheldrick wildlife trust staffs cleaned about 20 km stretch around Manyani. More than 6 tonnes of garbage was collected consisting of old tires, plastics, polythene, cans, canvas and fabric materials among others. It is evident that with exception of old tires which might peel off without the drivers' knowledge; all the other materials are thrown away by their users intentionally. Similarly even when the driver has the knowledge of his tire falling off he never stops to collect it. Education and tough restrictive measures need to be in place in order to keep the areas tidy. People who litter should be punished, for example they should have to dedicate 1 day a week to collecting litter in that area. Personal discipline and collective responsibility is paramount and all companies should think, act, and propagate environmentally friendly measures. If every individual cleans the area around him/her and acts responsibly, the whole world would be clean and a better place to live in.