Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Fri Jun 17, 2016 6:01 pm

Four groups identified in elephant poaching
Hanti Schrader, News24 correspondent | News24 21:45 14/06/2016

Mbombela - Kruger National Park (KNP) officials have identified four groups of Mozambican poachers who kill elephants and hack out their tusks to sell them off illegally.

Marius Snyders, Vlakteplaas regional field ranger in the north of Kruger, said the poachers were taking advantage of the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park.

The Limpopo National Park, together with the Kruger and Zimbabwe's Gonarezhou National Park, form part of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park.

“Most of the poachers of our elephants come from Mozambique, using the corridor between KNP and the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park. The fence was taken down in 1994 as per agreement. They use heavy-calibre weapons, often equipped with silencers.

"Even with a silencer you can hear the shots in the open veld and we have more than an hour to get to the carcass, because that is how long it takes for the poachers to remove the tusks; an hour and a half,” said Snyders.

Snyders said elephants had to be shot in their soft organs or groin to bring them down.

Once again, like with the statistics of rhino falling prey to poachers, there seems to be some confusion.

The department of environmental affairs spokesperson, Eleanor Momberg, confirmed that while 22 elephants were poached last year, 15 have already been poached this year.

However, a ranger who spoke to a News24 correspondent during a recent media excursion in the Kruger said the count so far for this year stands closer to 60.

This has been denied by authorities in the department and the South African National Parks (SANParks).

SANParks acting head of communication, William Mabasa, said there are around 16 000 elephants in the Kruger alone.

“Our rangers are dealing with anti-poaching as a whole. We do not only deal with specific species,” he said.


Mabasa said the poisoning of elephants has only been reported once this year.

“We only had one poisoning case since the beginning of this year and therefore we cannot at this stage label poisoning as a problem,” he said.
At the end of February this year, two lions and 110 white-backed vultures died after feasting on the poisoned carcass of an elephant. A year before, an elephant, four African lions and 46 vultures also died after being poisoned in the Kruger.


http://m.news24.com/news24/Green/News/f ... g-20160614

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:14 am

War talk counter-productive in fight against poachers - ecologist

A Kruger National Park ecologist says using war talk is counter-productive in the fight to stop poachers.

Jean-Jacques Cornish | 21 minutes ago



JOHANNESBURG – Animal rights activists gathered at the world’s largest wildlife conservation conference, now underway in Sandton, have been warned by a Kruger National Park expert to temper their language.

Large mammal ecologist at the park, Sam Ferreira, says using war talk is counter-productive in the fight to stop poachers threatening the existence of elephants and other species.

It’s quite wrong to talk about declaring a war on poaching, Kruger National Park’s Ferreira told a side event at the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species.

Only the president can declare war.

Bellicose language, he says, is hurting efforts to engage local communities in the fight to save the elephant and other species.

Ferreira says war talk drives the debate into them and US situation with struggling local communities pitted against financially more comfortable conservationists.

http://ewn.co.za/2016/09/29/Using-war-t ... p-poachers


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Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:33 pm

This is ridiculous :O^

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:47 pm

He sounds more like a war expert to me :-?

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:29 pm

Hmmmm...... As I understand the situation :

Many of the poachers are apparently trained soldiers who previously took part in the war in Mocambique .
Many of the poachers use rapid-fire military type rifles such as AK47's
Many of the poachers come across the border from Mocambique , do the killing , and then go back across the border.
Some of the staff on South Africa side are trained soldiers who use military methods and equipment to track and hunt down the poachers .
The language normally used about the activities against poaching normally mentions words such as the following : " the fight against poaching , etc , etc "

Well , sounds like a war to me , but Mr Ferreira says it is not a war ???? :-? :-? :-?

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:00 pm

Ferreira says war talk drives the debate into them and US situation with struggling local communities pitted against financially more comfortable conservationists.

This is a rather wild statement, IMO, and very condescending...surely THEY should not be assumed to be so malleable..THEY are adults after all? -O-

Local communities are entirely aware of the financial benefits, free of maintenance or input costs, annually provided by tourism in conservation areas, THEY just maybe need to be approached more in this regard? :-?

I really don't know what the hell a "financially more comfortable conservationist" is... 0: :O^
Last edited by Richprins on Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Thu Sep 29, 2016 6:06 pm

One with a lot of money? O** =O:

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Wed Dec 07, 2016 3:27 pm

Elephant ambassador ‘Charlie’ felled by poachers’ gun
BY DON PINNOCK - 6 DECEMBER 2016 - EARTH TOUCH NEWS NETWORK

Image

Tracking collars and sophisticated telemetry are a good way to see where wild elephants roam. They can also lead to grisly discoveries about where they die.

The world-famous Kruger National Park is being blindsided by its attachment to Mozambique’s Parque Nacional de Limpopo (PNL) on its eastern boundary, and “Charlie” the elephant is its latest victim. He died in a hail of bullets just metres across the southern Kruger-Mozambique boundary, only weeks after having a tracking collar attached.

charlie-elephant-carcass_2016_12_06.jpg
Image: Conservation Action Trust

The death of Charlie at the hands of ivory poachers is a synecdoche for a much larger problem. The Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park straddles the borders of Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe. It connects some of the most established wildlife areas in southern Africa into a 37 000-square-kilometre conservation area (the size of the Netherlands). A second phase was planned to expand it to nearly 100,000 square kilometres, but poaching, poor administration and bureaucratic snarl-ups have made this increasingly unlikely.

Kruger Park has been involved in an ongoing shooting war with poachers who have killed thousands of rhinos, while in Mozambique, Tanzania and Kenya, elephants are being plundered in staggeringly high numbers.

In September, Michelle Henley of Elephants Alive flew the northern sections of the PNL and found no elephants. “It was a huge shock and a wake-up call,” she said. “Part of the problem is that Kruger has consolidated its forces to the south to curb rhino poaching, leaving the central and north [areas]open to elephant poaching.”

According to Henley, the annual offtake from elephant poaching in Africa is now much higher than the natural reproductive rate, and is of grave concern.

“When we found the elephants in the south – where we collared Charlie – they were huddled rather than spread out, and highly aggressive, indicating raised fear levels. Just before we arrived, the Peace Parks technical adviser had flown the southern part of the PNL and he found 66 live elephants and 53 carcasses.

“We’re looking at a rapidly declining population. Poaching in PNL is definitely out of control and elephants are now being killed right on the Kruger border. It will soon be happening in the park itself.”

Thirty years ago, most of the continent’s elephants were in Central and East Africa. Today, the greatest percentage is in the southern African states, which now have over half the continent’s population. That’s mainly because of massive poaching of forest elephants plus decimation in East Africa.

The Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park is the last holdout of a free, relatively unfenced elephant population – and Kruger is where 78% of South Africa’s elephants live. But the elephant contagion is now definitely heading south.

“We’re the final stronghold of African elephants and poachers know that,” said Henley. “That’s why we’ve had a 53% decline right on our borders in the past five years. In the last 12 months, 68 elephants were poached in Kruger – the highest they’ve ever had since the 1980s. So elephant poaching is now a South African problem.

“Kruger’s our treasure box,” said Henley. “And right now, poachers are stealing our jewels. Elephants are an example to us of a moral society. They revere the old and adore the young. It’s something we humans are fast losing. And by taking out the old tuskers, we’re crippling the wisdom of the species. We should be very concerned.”

Read original article: http://www.earthtouchnews.com/environme ... chers-guns
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Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Wed Dec 07, 2016 5:55 pm

This is a tiny bit alarmist, i think (my opinion only).

The Northern part of the Transfronteir park, which is 80% of it, has little to no perennial water and few villages until one gets near the Limpopo. so the elephant go back to Kruger when the water dries up, largely, and return after rains. hence Ms Henley not finding carcasses there.

This area has always been remote, and consists of huge old hunting Cuetadas from colonial days. It is also not yet targeted by Renamo for weapons money, which has happened a bit but in their strongholds far more north.

The "southern" bit is around Massingir and many villages there along the Olifants river, the rhino poachers' stronghold. That does not mean there are many more elephant because of the river, necessarily, but could be the same as per seasonal pans, just more poached because of the proximity of these warlord strongholds, which should be obliterated, IMO...

But yes, they are coming! :yes:

Re: Elephant Poaching in South Africa

Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:27 pm

South African arrested in Mozambique’s Limpopo National Park on poaching charge

A South African, Pieter Jansen van Rensberg, has been arrested on a charge of poaching inside the protected buffer zone of the Mozambique’s Parque Nacional de Limpopo (PNL), which abuts the Kruger National Park. Also held were his wife, another family member and a guide from Massinger.

They had two high-powered hunting rifles and was carrying a permit in the name of Dirk Abraham Swart, which was invalid. He claimed he had been invited to hunt by the Director of Economic Activities in Massinger, but had no documentation to prove this. All hunting in the PNL is forbidden. A docket has been opened against Van Rensberg for illegal hunting in a protected area.

According to the Mozambican Director of Protection and Law Enforcement, Carlos Pereira, Van Rensberg – who presently lives in Manhiça Maragra, Maputo Province – refused to sign a document confirming the seizure of his weapons and was detained, but later released on bail pending trial.

His arrest comes shortly after the killing of a collared elephant named Charlie in a section opf the park which has seen increasing ivory poaching. When Michelle Henley of Elephants Alive, together with researchers from the Conservation Action Trust flew over the area during the collaring operation, they found elephants there were huddled rather than spread out and highly aggressive, indicating raised fear levels.

‘Just before we arrived’ said Henley, ‘the Peace Parks technical adviser had flown the southern part of the PNL and he found 66 live elephants and 53 carcasses. We’re looking at a rapidly declining population. Poaching in PNL is definitely out of control and elephants are now being killed right on the Kruger border. It will soon be happening in the park itself.’

According to Henley, the annual offtake from elephant poaching in Africa is now much higher than natural reproductive rate and is of grave concern.

Image
Poached elephant’s carcass ©Conservation Action Trust

Thirty years ago most of the continent’s elephants were in Central and East Africa. Today the greatest percentage is in the southern African states which now have over half the continent’s population. That’s mainly because of massive poaching of forest elephants plus decimation in East Africa.

The Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park is the last holdout of a free, relatively unfenced elephant population – and Kruger is where 78% of South Africa’s elephants live. But the elephant contagion is now definitely heading south.

‘We’re the final stronghold of African elephants and poachers know that,’ said Henley. ‘That’s why we’ve had a 53% decline right on our borders in the past five years. In the last 12 months, 68 elephants were poached in Kruger – the highest they’ve ever had since the 1980s. So elephant poaching is now a South African problem.

Image
Ivory stock piles ©Conservation Action Trust

Many of the Mozambican rhino and elephant poachers live in and around Massinger, which is in the PNL and just over the border from Kruger. If Van Rensberg is found to have been poaching, it will add a new dimension to an already runaway poaching situation in the area.

Read original article: http://africageographic.com/blog/south- ... ng-charge/