Chui Team Mtito Update: 01 September 2006

Chui Team Mtito Update: 01 September 2006

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Participants

Alex Macharia – team leader Francis Chege Kathuki Ngongo James Nyumu Mutua Vincent Nteritu Kapina 4KWS Rangers

Areas Covered

During the course of the month of September the following areas were patrolled by the Mtito de-snaring team: the Mtito river Circuit, the Rhino camp, Nguumo area, Kyusiani, Ngiluni, Mangelete, Yumbuni, Ngulia hills, both lower and upper Kenani, the Kanga and Kyulu stations, along the Athi river, as well as the pump and Komboyo areas.

247 SNARES COLLECTED 6 ARRESTS

Findings

We started the month’s operations at Mangelete after receiving reports of cattle encroaching into the park.

According to various community members, hundreds of heads of cattle have entered the park in search of browsing pastures. We were able to arrest two old men for cattle grazing.
Unfortunately the rest of the cattle grazers were able to evade arrest.

Of all the areas that we patrolled Mangelete had the highest number of snares, 67 were recovered,

as well as the highest number of vegetation destruction, cattle grazing and footprints leading into the park. We were able to arrest two charcoal burners during our de-snaring activities in the area.

17 snares were collected along the Mtito river circuit.

It has been noticed that most of the poachers gain access to the park from the river. A buffalo was reported to have been killed by poachers. It was shot with a bow and arrow while searching for water in the parched community area. The sale of the buffalo meat caused a huge disagreement between the poachers who could not agree on how the money should be shared.
A fight ensued which was reported to the Mtito police station leading to the arrest of the poachers.

Our patrols in Mangelete, Kenani and Ngulia took place in conjunction wit the Chyulu de-snaring teams. The reason for this being that these areas pose the greatest challenge to our de-snaring team and with the added reinforcement of an additional team we were better able to patrol the areas. We were able to arrest a poacher in Kenani who was in possession of a Dikdik, snares and timber cuttings and tools.

We carried out several ambushes along the most used poacher routes, especially the ones leading to Ngulia, which yielded no arrests. During our patrols we noticed that the levels of snaring have decreased which could be due to the fact that the poachers are now using bows and arrows to kill animals as they search for water in the community areas.

Rhino camp has been visited by several hippos who have broken the fence with further damage being done by elephants who have pulled down some of the fence poles. No poaching evidence or human encroachment was observed in this area.

The other areas patrolled this month showed little evidence of poaching although there is a lot of evidence of livestock entering and leaving the park. A total of 247 snares were lifted and 6 people arrested for various offences. We were also able to rescue a Dikdik from the snare that had trapped it.

Observable evidence During our patrols we came across poacher’s hideouts, footprints, and cuttings.

Report by Alex Macharia