Simba Team Ziwani Update: 01 September 2009
Participants: Nicodemus Kivindyo-Team Leader John Mungai Adan Abdi Boru Okichi Joshua Muthoka 2 KWS Rangers
During the month of September the Ziwani Team conducted its de-snaring activities at the following areas: the Taita Wildlife Sanctuary, the Lumo community sanctuary and Oza Ranch
341 SNARES COLLECTED
During the months operations the team lifted a total of three hundred and forty one snares with 189 targeting large game and 152 targeting small game.
The team has come to realise that there is an increase in the mortality rate of animals in all the areas patrolled. This increase is due to the high volumes of animals migrating to the area in search of browse, which due to the drought is scarce. This increase means there is more competition for both food and water leading to the death of animals that are not able to compete effectively for the available resources.
Due to the ongoing devastating drought the month of September revealed an upward trend in the number of snares being lifted, with 341 snares being lifted, the highest number recorded by the team this year.
Taita wildlife sanctuary
This area lies under the southern part of Tsavo West National Park and is home to may species of animals with many migrating into the area in search of water which can be found here as the waterholes often get filled by the Sanctuary. The increase in the number of animals in the Sanctuary has taken its tole on the vegetation and habitat which has been degraded over the past few months.
During our operations in the area we lifted 22 snares all of which targeted large game. We came across the carcass of a dead buffalo in a snare; the poachers had removed all the meat, leaving behind the head, skin and intestines.
We came across several other carcasses during our patrols, including a bull elephant which was a victim of the drought.
Lumo Community Sanctuary This area lies under the southern part of Tsavo West National park and hosts many animals that have migrated to the area in search of pasture and water. The team lifted a total of 13 snares all of which targeted large game. We also noticed that charcoal burning is taking place in the park.
The team came across several carcasses during our patrols, one of which was a young elephant of about 3 years of age.
During the ecological trips the students were lucky to see many different animal species including Elephants, leopard and buffaloes.
The two schools praised the trust’s initiative to sponsor trips into the park as no one that attended would have been able to benefit from the experience as they would not have been able to afford to undertake such an excursion on their own. Report by Nicodemus Kivindyo