The October/November operation was done in three phases covering three different areas of operation. The first one covered the Mtito River and across the main Mtito Gate road while the second one was done along Tsavo River from Tsavo gate both upstream and downstream. The last one was done along the Athi River from Kaluku Farm downstream.
Operation period was from 20th October to 11th November. Then from 21st November to 1st December.
1. WAMBUA KIKWATHA 2. JAMES MBUTHA 3. JOHN MALONZA 4. KILONZO NZYOKA 5. MUEMA KINGOO 6. HUSSEIN KALA 7. PETER WAMOKE 8. ABDI HARO 9. ERUS ERUPE
As indicated above, the desnaring team started with the Mtito river stretch. This area has been patrolled severally during the previous operations. Results emanating from this operation confirms the fact that snaring along this particular area has gone down tremendously. Nevertheless, some poachers from other villages fine courage to penetrate to far areas from the river. We lifter very few snares next to the river where we had collected masses of snares before.
Our team decided to follow footprints into the park. It was unbelievable to find bicycle tyre marks going in and out of the park. This is a clear sign of serious poaching inside the park where foot patrols are never done. We tracked the prints for more that 10kms from the main road where we found more than 80 snares set. This area became out prime target and eventually we collected a total of 414 snares. The snares were set around waterholes though the waterholes are dry. During the operation, a poacher armed with poison arrows was found and arrested by the rangers. He helped us lift his 110 snares.
After exhausting this area, we shifted out camp to Tsavo gate. The area around the Chinese base, Tsavo railway station and along the Tsavo River was patrolled. A total of 139 snares were lifter. The last operation was done after a break of one week along the Athi River. We also revisited some hotspots along the Mtito River and the waterholes. No snares were collected along the Athi River while 20 more snares were lifted along the Mtitio River. A total of 573 snares were yielded.
Generally snaring is not prevalent between Kaluku farm and Ngiluni. This is the same area where masses of snares were collected during the first desnaring operation. Apparently the community has been highly sensitised on issues pertaining to wildlife conservation. Moreover assistance to schools (Kamunyu and Ngiluni Primary schools,) in terms of text books has been accorded, as well as sponsorship of bright pupils to secondary schools and donations of water tanks to Kamunyu Primary School.
Report compiled by Wambua Kikwatha