Participants James Mbuthia -Team Leader David Njoroge -Asst. Team Leader Julius Mwania -Security Julius Kyalo -In camp Stephen Nyaga -KWS Ranger Jacob Karuti -KWS Ranger
The camp was set at Komboyo Campsite. A total of 111(one hundred and eleven) snares were lifted: 50% for dikdiks, 40% for medium sized animals and10% made for large animals. We were expecting a result like this with it being the wet season people are generally planting and dealing with their crops. However frequent patrols are necessary because some people will still poach although not as much as usual. Matangini and Mangelete areas had less snares compared to previous patrols. A lot of community awareness input has been done in this area this year making the community recognize and appreciate the importance of conserving wildlife.
In the course of our patrols, we interacted with many community members who repeatedly mentioned destruction of their crops by wildlife as the single biggest problem that they are facing.
Many believe that an electric fence will be a permenant solution to the problem.
Yumbuni had the highest snare level with 31 snares. A poacher was arrested at this area with a bicycle and a sack of charcoal.
Kanga and Mtito railway stations yielded 21 and 8 snares respectively. Not much snaring was noted along Mtito River stretch. A lot of the snares were old, rusty and camouflaged in the overgrown vegetation.
Footprints were seen along the Chulus moving deep inside the park, this is the area we had confronted a gang of 9 poachers in August this year.
Generally snaring levels have dropped sharply in comparison with the last few months. Animals’ populations have increased indicating that the area is safer.
COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION IN TREE- PLANTING.
One Mangelete farmer voluntarily agreed to sow Neem tree seedlings on his land which after germination will be distributed to the rest of community members.
Matulani Primary School is a new school that falls along the park boundary. As a matter of introduction we held a talk with teachers who expressed interest with our work, later we showed the pupils a wildlife film and donated twenty Neem seedlings.
Mtito Primary School also benefited from a wildlife video show.
Joanna chose secondary school was donated fifteen Neem tree seedlings by their wildlife club.
Sports work is progressing well. A football match was organized between Nthunguni and Kyusiani football club, many people attended.
Later, we had a discussion about the importance of wildlife, there was lots of feed back and people are generally posetive about the way things are going.
I wish to have more football clubs established along the park boundary up to the Chulus. This will obviously bridge the gap between conservation bodies and the community thereby reducing any suspicion between the two.
Link with more schools that fall along the park boundary.
Reported by James Mbuthia.