Period of Operation 11.02.02 – 25.02.02
Area of Operation
The February operation targeted Mangalete area and about 10km from Mtito Town downstream.
Participants James Mbuthia - team leader John Malonza - tracker Julius Mwania - tracker Stephen Ngigi - KWS Ranger Diba Boro - KWS Ranger Julius Kyalo - in camp
A camp was set at Kamboyo Campsite. All the penetration points into the Park, in this area, were checked and various waterholes visited. A total of 198 snares were lifted during the February operation. Mangelete, Matangini, and Yumbuni areas were visited. Most of the snares were made for dik dik, with a few for medium sized animals. Judging by previous patrols, the trend is going down possibly due to regular patrolling which keeps up the pressure in this area, coupled with awareness. The people have also recently harvested crops and therefore are not as hungry.
We were lucky enough to find and release a Dik Dik which was just caught in a snare and not so badly damaged. The snares were scattered, unlike the previous findings. Once again there has been a drop in the ammouunt of snares found from 472 snares in September 2001 to 198 this month which is promising.
Public bazzars were held at Matangini, Mangalete, and Yumbuni area. During the month of February the above three communities were visited. I was invited by Mr. Koruta, the warden in charge of the community to talk about the dangers of snaring , a large amount of people turned up. By the end everyone seemed to have understood the dangers of snares and are willing to try and stop it.
During my talk I pointed out that the charcoal burning business is not sustainable and poses a major threat to the existence of the Mtito River, as a result people decided that they would start to plant trees .
Several schools were visited, Matangini, Mangalete and Kikwasuni Primary Schools, who are busy collecting money for Wildlife Club registration. We desperately need a video projector for our team in order to show the kids wildlife throughout Africa and the rest of the world. However, in the meantime, conservation discussions and the establishment of tree nurseries have continued.
Iviani Wildlife Club has already established a tree nursery of their own, and they plan to plant trees in the school compound and at their homes.
Since the inception of Kamumyu/Ngiluni and Kyusiani Football Clubs, several other clubs have found youg people who are keen to be involved and if possible start their own clubs. We feel that sport is a great way to express oneself and feel part of a team. By involving these people in Sports you are taking away an opportunity to snare by keeping them busy.
Report by James Mbuthia