Chui Team Mtito Update: 01 June 2005
James Mbuthia Mutua Koti Feisal Muteti Francis Chege Masaku Mbanga Wilson Naingisa Mr. Macharia - KWS Mr Akenga - KWS Mr George – KWS
Areas Covered: Mukurulo, Kari land, The Kiboko river stretch, the Kaunguni areas of the Chulu National Park, some parts of the river in the Tsavo East National Park Triangle. The Tsavo East National Park Triangle, the pipeline, Tsavo West boundary from Mtito town to the Chulus, the Chulu slopes towards Kilanguni Lodge and surrounding areas.
350 SNARES COLLECTED
A total of 350 snares were lifted and 5 people were arrested. One bush meat poacher was arrested at Makutano area near the Athi River, carrying bush meat on a bicycle; he is allegedly a worker at an Asian farm along the Athi.The other four were illegally grazing in the triangle after overgrazing what they have on their land; this has been accelerated by the lack of rains this year. It is important to intensify the patrols as this pushes animals away from their usual habitats to other areas. Three Dikdiks were rescued and 1 lesser Kudu was found dead. The Mtito river is dry, leaving pools of water at isolated points in the lagga. This makes the poachers snare around the pools. Animals walking inside the lagga looking for water are prone to being shot by arrows and this has made Mtito river to be a major area for poaching and thus for patrolling. Ngumo area is a poacher’s penetration point into the triangle from Kathekani, Barajani and Kitui and remains the greatest challenge. Poachers getting into the park at dawn and moving deep inside the park for weeks makes them very difficult to catch. We have to walk many kilometers to catch up with them because the area is so large. Ambushes at some major hot spots have been set up throughout the month. Ranger shortages sometimes withdrawn in the middle of the operation is a great obstacle. Probably due to forthcoming passing out of new KWS rangers the problem of the shortage will be sorted out and therefore the triangle will be patrolled well.
The community element of de-snaring has started on a high note with 2 schools having excursions into Tsavo West national park on different days, these were Matingini primary school and Kyusiani primary school.The pupils were very excited to visit the park and learn more about wildlife conservation.
On the 30th of June the Trust donated 50 desks to Ngiluni primary school.
Many foot ball clubs are active almost every weekend having a match. All this is aimed at reducing idleness which will otherwise lead to poaching. At these functions I have successfully gathered important poaching information.
Report by James Mbuthia