Anti-Poaching Update: Human/Wildlife Conflict
From Nkululeko “Freedom” Hlongwane, Bushlife Support Unit Trust Manager, “The hot season is just about upon us again, and for different people, it means different things. For anti-poaching rangers in the field, it means sweating, walking long hours in the field and getting bothered by mopane stingless bees – getting in your nostrils, eyes and ears. It is that time of year where Zambezi Valley temperatures can range between 36 to 50 degrees Celsius.For wild animals, it means changing their feeding habits by being more active in cooler times of the day, that is early morning and late afternoon. They are also trying to survive on dwindling water sources and feeding on dry vegetation.
We are currently involved in various projects running in and outside of the park. We continue to support ZimParks in all aspects of operations, ranging from the provision of camping equipment, deployment of our vehicles for patrols, food rations, ecological assessments, and community projects.
Outside of the park, operations addressing human/carnivore conflict are ongoing, with recent reports of a pride of lions killing livestock in Nyamakate Hotel Village. This report comes in after we have been following a leopard that has killed 68 goats this year, and lions that have killed three cows plus a donkey, bringing it to a total to 72 animals lost in seven months. Read more about this in our September update.
Our anti-poaching bases have received new tents. Bushlife Support Unit’s team of drivers are all looking smart in their new uniforms. These are the men with the vehicles who transport the park rangers on the anti-poaching patrols.