Kasau Lerat – Team Leader Patrick Mutuku – Ass Team Leader Adan Abdi – Car guard Julius Mumo – Cook Samuel Lolchuraki– KWS ranger Kisangi Munywoki – KWS ranger
SNARES COLLECTED 942
After a long break due to the shortage of rangers (they had all been dispatched to an area of Tsavo where there were bandits) we went back to de-snaring. The dry spell had set in and the poachers moved into the park in big numbers. During the operation a total of 942 snares were collected, 888 of which were for smaller mammals whilst the rest were for larger ones. There are more smaller mammals then there are of the larger species, wire snares for smaller animals is easier to get hold of and also it is easier to transport smaller mammals than larger ones, this will explain why there are always large amounts of smaller snares then there are larger ones. Tundani was the worst poached area, two hideouts were discovered, 26 carcasses were found and confiscated along with poison arrows, honey and a panga. Unfortunately we did not capture the poachers.
We found fresh footprints at Macho Kombo, the foot of the Yatta. There is evidence of honey harvesting and bird killing by using traps, we rescued and released one francolin that was caught in a trap. Uma uma, Mkoka, and Wamata have shown no signs of human activities as opposed to the last time where honey gathering was very high. Sheldrick blind and Tharakana were characterised by footprints going deep into the park, we also collected fresh snares. Most of the area is inaccessible making it difficult to operate. However, the team was determined to make sure that we would cover as large an area as possible. Athi River is always another heavily poached area because the poachers access the park very easily. Last season, long rains failed and so we can expect poaching to be on the increase within the next few months. We need to increase our patrols to show the presence at all corners of the park. It is clear that de-snaring alone will not reverse the situation; we have to carry out education campaigns to enlighten our communities for the betterment of our heritage.
Compiled by Kasao Lerat