Nicodemus Kivindyo – Team Leader John Mungai Adan Abdi Boru Okichi Joshua Muthoka 2 KWS Rangers
During the month of December the Ziwani Team patrolled the following areas: Mgeno Ranch, Oza Ranch, Taita Wildlife Sanctuary, and Lumo Community Sanctuary. In conjunction with Ithumba Team and Mbiriki Group Ranch Scouts the Team also patrolled the Mbiriki Group Ranches, Kimana Sanctuary, and the Kenya- Tanzania border near Amboseli National Park.
During the month of December the Team lifted a total of 59 snares, out of which 40 targeted big game and 11 targeted small game.
While Patrolling in Oza Ranch the Team came across a poacher on a bicycle, during pursuit the poacher dropped his belongings and escaped. The team recovered 10kg of Dikdik and Eland meat from the poachers’ bag.
At Mgeno Ranch a poacher’s hideout was found containing cooking utensils, bedding, snares, and clothes.
With the arrival of the long awaited rains the snaring activity seems to have decreased, as many poachers have switched to using lamping methods. The reduction of snaring could be attributed to the rains. Since the arrival of heavy rains in December the waterholes and vegetation have begun to recover from the drought therefore wild animals no longer gather around the last remaining water sources, instead they have spread out to new feeding grounds and other water sources making snaring less fruitful and forcing the poachers to change tactics.
This area is a very important migratory corridor connecting Tsavo East and Tsavo West National Parks. Charcoal burning, logging, and destruction to habitat are major threats to wildlife in this area.
This area borders the southern part of Tsavo West National Park and is home to large numbers of wild animals. It also acts as an important migratory corridor for wildlife moving between Tsavo East and Tsavo West National Parks as well as movement to Tanzania and back.
Poaching in this area is high; the team lifted 46 snares most of which targeted big game. The Team arrested a poacher caught in the act of checking his snares who was booked at Voi Police Station.
Taita Wildlife Sanctuary
This sanctuary was a stronghold for a lot of the wildlife from the surrounding Parks & Ranches during the drought. The large Dam provided wild animals a lifeline over the long drought which has only broken this month. As a result this area drew in many poachers who followed the wildlife and has been one of the Teams main anti-poaching patrols areas. The Team arranged several ambushes, one of which resulted in the arrest of a poacher caught setting snares.
Mbirikani Group Ranch and Kimana Ranch
The Team joined up with the Trusts Ithumba Team and the Mbirikani Group Ranch Scouts for Patrols.
The Kimana Ranch had a lot of charcoal burning taking place.
The Lemomo area lies close to the Kenya- Tanzania border and the Amboseli National Park. Many wild animals cross over to Tanzania and back into Kenya, as they have done throughout history. Locals from the area informed the Team of the presence of Tanzanian poachers who use very violent poaching methods. They slash the animal’s legs and follow the wounded animal as it bleeds to death. The poachers then harvest the meat and sell it in Tanzania. Due to heavy rains, conditions for patrols were hindered and hence there are plans to return together with the Mbirikani Ranch Scouts who know the area very well and have a good relationship with the local Communities. Community Outreach
ON the 13th the Team showed a wildlife film at Msorongo Community. The Community was very appreciative and requested to have more involvement with the Team and the Trusts work.
Report by Nicodemus Kivindyo – Ziwani Team Leader