Ndovu Team Ithumba Update: 01 February 2005
Wambua Kikwatha – Team leader Mwoni Ikuthu – Cook Wekesa Mhebi – De-snarer Feisal Muteti – De-snarer Munywoki Kisangi – Tracker Patrick Ekai - Driver
Kasaala Kimweli park boundary, Tiva River from the boundary to Roka areas, Macho Kombo, Tharakana, Mkoka and Kyamanyenze.
This month we revisited last months patrol areas as well as adding a few more. The operations took place over a period of 17 days. During the first few days of the month there was very little activity taking place. However things got busier as of the 11th of the month. In Macho Kombo we found and lifted two small snares. Footprints were also seen but there was no sign of any recent activity in the area. In Tundai we found 20 snares which had been set to trap small game. The snares were lifted and found to be old and ill serviced. When we reached the Tiva river area we lifted a total of 94 snares all of which were for small game. Footprints were seen and 2 poachers were seen who were in possession of blankets, 2 bows and 23 poisonous arrows. Unfortunately they managed to escape arrest. There were no snares lifted in Kyamanyenze. However a poacher was spotted who fled upon seeing us. We also came across two tracks that are regularly used by poachers. We proceeded to lay an ambush which lasted from 5am to 11am, sadly no poachers came down the track. Although there were a lot of footprints no snares were found. 13 small snares were lifted at the Kasala boundary at the middle of the month. On the 21st we laid an ambush from 6am to 9am at the Kwa Kimweli boundary where we lifted 123 small game snares. We also found two dead dik diks. The largest numbers of snares were lifted in Kalovoto where we found a total of 161 snares of which 34 were for large game. Following a tip from one of our informers we set another ambush at Kyamenyenze at the end of the month. Sadly the poachers saw some of the rangers and changed course thus avoiding arrest. A total of 413 snares were lifted. It was also observed that the poachers have started to enter the park between 4am and 6am and leaving at night. For an ambush to be successful it has to be carried out during that time period.
Report by Wambua Kikwatha