SWT/KWS Sky Vets Report for October 2020 - January 2021

Published on the 15th of February, 2021

During October to January 2021 the SWT/KWS Sky Vet program was called to handle 12 wildlife cases, 11 of which were supported by the SWT helicopter and fixed wing aircrafts to help with elephant darting operations, a translocation as well as search and monitoring operations as well as one case requiring a chartered helicopter.

10 of these cases involved elephants including, 6 poaching cases and 1 HWC case where a notorious crop raiding bull had to be relocated to avoid further conflict with the community. There was also 1 case where an elephant was treated for injuries presumed to be natural and 2 elephant calf rescues. Of the elephant poaching cases there were 3 snares, 1 spear and 2 arrow wound injuries.

The other 2 cases involved 1 female rhino that was treated in Lake Nakuru National Park for filarial wounds and 1 case where 6 rhinos were ear notched and fitted with transmitters.

Out of the 12 cases treated there was an 67% success rate and no deaths but 17% of cases were given a guarded prognosis. Without rapid veterinary response, the majority of these cases would have died from their injuries.