Posts Tagged With: Rangers

How to Track a Poacher 101

southern africa wildlife college

photo: Southern Africa Wildlife College

Rangers are taught “basic training” in a short 6-8 week period of time. During this general training they learn

  • animal identification and behavior
  • bird identification
  • plant and grass identification
  • how to recognize and manage soil erosion
  • general patrol techniques
  • bush craft
  • bush survivalTracker training 4
  • first aid

This is a lot to take in during a short amount of time. Once employed, they study and learn on-the-job with senior rangers. During their time with a reserve, there is constant in-house training to enhance or maintain their skills. Additional outside training is welcomed, but can be more costly.

Rangers have some familiarity in animal tracking, but humans are  another kind of animal. Poachers are an ever-present danger. Due to the increase and intensity of poaching, it is absolutely essential for rangers to learn how to track them within their area.

Tracker training 2

Tracker training by Colin Patrick Training.

Human (or poacher) tracking teaches them

  •  Early detection of the presence of suspicious activities / presence of suspects.

  •  The systematic following of a suspects trail that can lead to the:

    •  Location of traps, snares, camps, entry and exit point, and poaching hot spots.

    •  Apprehension of the suspects whether it be trespassers or poachers

    • Gathering of invaluable intelligence on movement and operation patterns, level of skill, modus operandi,  and current weaknesses within the implemented operational plan, which will feed into the counter poaching model,

    • Gathering of evidence linking suspects to scenes of crime.

With poachers having the advantage of the element of surprise, working in groups, and often better armed, learning how to detect them is crucial both to the safety of the rangers and wildlife.

Ranger holding baby rhino foot

photo: unknown

FightforRhinos received a plea from a ranger in a smaller APU in southern Kruger to help them learn human tracking. We have found an outside, reputable training program to send them to. But we can’t do it without your help. To support our efforts, please go to Go-Fund-Me or make a donation through Paypal  on the Donate button at fightforrhinos.com
3 white rhinos by penny wilson

In order to keep them safe, we must support THEIR protectors, the rangers. photo: Penny Wilson

 

 

 

 

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Training Rangers to Protect Rhinos

We’re starting out the new year with a Go-Fund-Me campaign to protect our rhinos and the courageous rangers who stand between them and the poachers.

rhino ranger

photo: Chris Galliers

We received a plea from a ranger belonging to a smaller anti-poaching unit in southern Kruger National Park. The loss of rhino in their area has left them feeling frustrated and helpless.  Aside from their basic training, they are in urgent need of a tracking course to enable them to better track poachers when they are in the area.

In this ranger’s words “It is important to go to such training as in most training centers or colleges they do teach us tracking but in a short period, and in those weeks there’s lot of things we’ve been taught (i.e animal identification, tree species, grass,soil erosion, patrol techniques, etc) so doing this specified human tracking will enable us to see clearly where and how the poachers came and to follow them if they’re inside the park.”

Please support and share this crucial campaign. ANY and every amount is hugely appreciated.

For more see: Rangers can’t do it alone, they need your help!

Go-Fund-Me: Training Rangers to Protect Rhinos

help rangers illustration by sophia

Categories: Making a Difference, Ranger Heroes, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Rhino Wrap-up 2015

We can’t emphasis enough how important YOU are to the success of Fight for Rhinos. Thanks to all of you, this is the difference we were able to make in 2015..

*The dehorning of Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center poaching survivors; Dingle Dell and Lion’s Den at a total cost of $1250.00.  This was essential in not only keeping them safe while they’re at the center, but also in preparation for their eventual return to the wild.

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Lion’s Den & Dingle Dell photo: Fight for Rhinos

*A total contribution of $3080.00 to Ol Pejeta Conservancy for

  • Rhino audit (to carry out an independent verification of all individual rhinos on OPC ($2000 usd)
  • Monitoring equipment – 6 GPS devices @ $ 180ea
black rhinos ol pejeta

Black rhinos at Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya. photo: OPC

 

*Three months of funding to cover expenses of the Black Mambas APU, including food, supplies and miscellaneous expenses (at a total of $2345.00 usd)

black mambas training

Black Mambas training. photo: Protrack

We’re already working hard on our next campaign, funding a critical human tracking course for an APU located in southern Kruger National Park, to prevent them from losing further rhinos.

help rangers illustration by sophia

THANK YOU for helping us to help them!

Please continue to follow our progress, and as always ANY amount you are able to contribute is extremely helpful and appreciated. Together we ARE making a difference!

 

 

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Christmas Dreams

Peace love and rhinos

I’m dreaming of a peaceful Christmas

even if the moon is full.

I’m dreaming of a cloudy night and starless sky

for the rangers down below.

I’m dreaming of the light of change

To fill the darkest of a man’s heart,

With compassion and wisdom

Before the killing even starts.

I’m dreaming of a silent night

Where the vets don’t get that call,

Where both rhinos and people can sleep soundly,

For peace to creatures one and all. 

                                                   by: T. Wardlow

To all rangers, vets, caretakers, and our supporters-

Merry Christmas!

 

 

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Help the rangers in Kruger!

In addition to assisting Ol Pejeta and the Black Mambas, we are currently raising funds to support an anti-poaching unit in southern Kruger National Park. This APU has lost rhinos in recent months, and are in need of additional training to track poachers.

By providing them with training of human tracking, this will enhance their skills, cut down the chances of poaching, and further equip them in protecting wildlife in the area.

By purchasing an ornament, a piece of art or making a donation, you will provide necessary support for our project.

kruger ranger photo unknown

Ranger in Kruger National Park. photo: Marco Longari

 

Categories: Making a Difference, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Remember Rhinos this holiday season!

Three ways to help!

  1. Purchase a greater one-horn rhino ornament

Greater one-horn ornament

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Purchase a piece of art-on sale for the holidays!

after the mudwallow closeup

 

 

 

 

 

3. When you shop Amazon, mention Fight for Rhinos, and they will contribute to our conservation projects. No added cost or work from you!

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ALL proceeds from your donations go directly toward our rhino conservation projects; currently including Ol Pejeta Conservancy, the Black Mambas APU, and our ongoing campaign to help APUs with a variety of needs to combat poaching.

help-me

 

 

 

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We proudly support the Black Mambas

We have proudly supplied the only all female APU, the South African Black Mambas with financial support for their operation costs for the remainder of 2015.  Thanks to your donations, a total of $2,435 usd has been given toward their day to day expenses; food, uniforms, supplies, etc.

These ladies have made huge strides in their communities, spending 21 days a month patrolling the reserve, teaching locals about wilderness preservation, and keeping an eye out for poaching activities.

black mambas snare removal

Another day of multiple snare removal in the reserve.

“Each [Mamba] has a story, a dream and a vision for the future, each has a family to support, a community to educate. Funds are scarce, yet they are passionate and determined. For some, they are the only breadwinners, feeding their families on little wages. For others this is a hopeful step towards furthering their careers. For all of them, the love for nature and its conservation runs deep. Their ethos is to protect this heritage of wildlife.” -Julia Gunther, photographer

black mambas james suter 2

Black Mambas at sunset photo: James Suter

 

Categories: Good News, Making a Difference, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ranger Coulran

Name: Coulran

Age: 28 years old

Location: Mpumalanga, SA

I did my field rangers course at one of the best college in southern African, SOUTHERN AFRICAN WILDLIFE COLLEGE AND AFRICAN FIELD RANGERS TRAINING SERVICES,  I’m proud to have been a product of them thanks to the opportunity they offered me and other rangers, though it was not an easy road.

Coulran in bush

Coulran on duty

What has been your most rewarding and most difficult moment as a ranger?

The most rewarding moments as a anti poach ranger is when I spend more months without poaching within the reserve and believe me I wish I can spend my whole life without poaching activities. That motivates me as it shows that me and my colleagues we doing a marvelous job.

The difficult moments is when I wake up in the mornings and wear my uniforms with the thought that I may not make it back to the camp as I may occur a battle contact with poachers. When I don’t arrest poachers when they trespass our reserve as they are one step ahead of me and my unit members.

How much do you work, what is your schedule like?

The way I work can’t be really specified as it’s not a daily routine but what I can say is it all depends on my ops manager and what schedule he brings that day or night. I work 9 hour mornings or nights. It’s like 2 weeks on nights,  2 weeks on days and 2 weeks bush camp. In total I work 42 days and get 14 days off.

I do patrols and ambushes during work.

Where would you like to travel someday?

I would like to travel to Asia and Botswana. In Asia I would want to see where are they selling this rhinoceros horns,  and in Botswana to learn how they keep the low rate of illegal rhino poaching because they are doing a great job.

What’s your favorite meal?

My favorite meal has to be pap and bull brand beef as it keeps me strong during those hard and long hours during work in the bush; and I won’t forget my grannie’s cooking I adore everything she cooks.

What do your friends/family think of your profession?

Couran on dutyMy family, especially my granny couldn’t understand why I chose anti-poaching while I could’ve been a doctor or some good office work, as I did very well in my matric and my other dream was to be a charted accountant.  But I had a soft spot for this species.But they support me and always call me to check if I’m still okay. As for my friends; those who know me they do support and wish me the best of luck.

I strived so hard to be where I am as it was not an easy journey to be an anti-poaching ranger. I dedicate my life for the animals and I’m proud to be a ranger .LET THE ROAR OF THE AFRICAN LION BE HEARD!

Categories: Ranger Heroes, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Where we stand

rhino graphi HR aug 2015

South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs has officially announced the latest poaching stats. The accuracy is debatable, considering their definition of poaching.

Rhinos killed whose horns were left intact are not part of the stats. Rhinos who survived, such as Hope and iThemba, are not part of the stats, and pregnant cows who were killed-the babies are not included in the stats.

Regardless, at this point the numbers are slightly down, and offer a glimmer of hope.

Much of this “success”, can be summed up best by Sam Ferreira, an ecologist at SANParks, “Poacher activities increased, but number of rhinos killed per day has not. That’s the difference rangers make.”
They ARE the lifeline for our rhinos.

For our part in the poaching war, this remains-we will persevere and continue to look for and support the best combined efforts to fight for the future of rhinos. We will be off to South Africa shortly to meet with our other members of the Rhino Alliance, as well as others to take inventory on current projects and explore possibilities for future ones.

We cannot stress how deeply we appreciate your continued support in our endeavors. Without the generosity and heart of individuals like you, we cannot do what we do!

Stay tuned for updates when we return!

rhino and oxpecker close up michael moss

Photo: Michael Moss

 

Fight_for_Rhinos_2_3                                                                     Endelea Kupigana! (keep fighting)

 

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The Ladies of the Black Mambas APU

Olifants National Park

Black Mambas are deployed in 5 areas throughout the 50,000 hectares of Olifants, which is part of the Greater Kruger National Park.

Fight for Rhinos and Helping Rhinos proudly support the Black Mambas anti-poaching unit; a primarily female APU established in 2013 to protect the Olifants West Game Reserve.

The objective of the Black Mambas is not only the protection of rhinos through boots on the ground but also through being a role model in their communities. These women work to the concept of the “Broken Window” philosophy and strive to make their area of influence the “most undesirable, most difficult and least profitable place to poach”.

Recently we asked two of the rangers, Shipwe and Collett, about their jobs…

Shipiwe

Shipwe

Collett

Collett

FFR: Why did you join the Black Mambas?

Collett: Seeing rhinos being killed each and everyday, it helped my heart to make a decision that enough is enough with the killing. I joined the Mambas to stop the killing.

Shipwe: I joined to help make a difference in saving and protecting our rhinos.

FFR: What is the toughest part of being a Black Mamba?

Collett: Seeing a dead rhino carcass in front of me makes my heart bleed and it disturbs me a lot.

Shipwe: Knowing that we are dealing with dangerous people. I mean poachers you don’t know where you’ll find them out there in the field, but we know how to handle it.

FFR: What aspects of your job do you enjoy the most?

Collett: Doing road blocks, searching cars that are going out of the reserves for unpermitted things.

Shipwe: Sweeping

Black mambas marching

The Black Mambas main objective main objective is to search and destroy poacher’s camps, wire-snares and bush-meat kitchens every day.

FFR: Do you feel you’re treated differently than men in APUs?

Collett: No, they treat me as an APU, not as a man or a woman.

Shipwe:  No, I feel treated very well. It seems we are the first females to be in this field.

FFR: What have you learned since joining the Mambas that you didn’t know before?

Collett: How to do a bush walk.

Shipwe: I have learned how to interact with animals of all kinds because I work with them almost everyday.

FFR: What can your community do to best support you?

Collett: Stop coming from the reserve and poaching, because these people are coming from our communities.

Shipwe:  By organizing meetings so that I can go and teach them, young and old people, about saving our nature and reserves.

Stop killing rhinos black mambas

FFR: You are an inspiration to your community, as well as to girls who may not have thought of being in a APU before. What would you say to girls or women who are thinking of doing the same job?

Collett:  To do this job is not simple, so they need to be in love with animals and have a mind-set of wanting to protect our rhinos more than to think about money or other stuff.

Shipwe:  I can say to them they need to have a big heart to do it, because it requires all your energy, your ability to think and the courage to do it.

The Black Mambas have identified and destroyed over 12 poachers’ camps and 3 bush meat kitchens within the “buffer-zone” as well as reduced snaring and poisoning activities by 76% within their area of operation since their deployment in 2013.

To continue to support their endeavors, consider donating to Fight for Rhinos in the US, or Helping Rhinos in the UK.

 

Categories: Ranger Heroes, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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