Simba Team Ziwani Update: 01 July 2004

Simba Team Ziwani Update: 01 July 2004

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ZIWANI TEAM SPONSORED BY WSPA

De-snaring report for July 2004

Participants

Patrick Mutuku – Team leader Josphat Ajot Henry Lekochere James Mbuthia- Mtito team leader David Njorogi – Mtito assistant team leader John Malonza - Mtito Francis Chege - Mtito Masaku Mbanga - Mtito KWS rangers

Findings

On the 5th of July the team met with the senior warden and the company commander of Tsavo West national park. During the discussion the bush meat trade and cattle grazing inside the park were highlighted as the most pressing issues which need urgent attention. The park management promised its support in provision of rangers who will accompany the team on patrols. We have also been given 2 rooms and a store and a small office for our operations at Ziwani.

A total of 231 snares were collected this month, the majority of which were designed for larger animals which is very unusual. We also arrested a total of seven poachers out of eleven, unfortunately four managed to escape. The arrested poachers were operating deep inside the park, with them were seven donkeys three bicycles and two hand carts, all of these are used to ferry the bush meat out of the park and across the border into Tanzania.
We established that the snares are brought from Tanzania, but also made out of old railway lines. This is a very vast area and in order to locate snaring lines the team sometimes drives large distances.
We confiscated 18 Dikdik which we intercepted being taken to Njukini market as well as three bicycles.
We also confiscated one impala which was ready for sale in the same market. We came across one Dikdik which was found dead in a snare and we found a poacher hideout with meat drying which we promptly destroyed.
The use of KWS planes which can cover a larger area and locate snaring lines quicker would enable us to work faster and cover greater areas. We also need to remove the old telephone cables which are a great source of snares. Community conservation is something that we will look into in the near future.

Report by Patrick Mutuku and James Mbuthia