Rombo is a long way from anything, an expanse of thick bush where Mt. Kilimanjaro finally gives way to flatter land. Bordered to the east by Tsavo national park, it’s the perfect place to do your poaching, or a convenient passage to the magnificent elephants that lie beyond.
Or it was. Our Rombo rangers (supported by African Wildlife Foundation have begun to work more closely with the rangers from Tsavo Pride, and the broader intelligence net is already yielding success. In a combined operation they recently caught three poachers with sacks of gazelle meat, and the grisly tools used for killing.
It’s an annual trend that we face; as the dry season intensifies, so does bushmeat poaching. Our other units across the ecosystem have also been active, one man arrested with 5 snares and another two arrested with bows and arrows. In both these cases, we got to them before they killed.
Although bushmeat poaching does not get as much media attention, it is equally important to us. This is not killing for the cooking pot; there is a thriving game meat market across Africa, threatening a host of species.
By catching these poachers we deter other potential killers. And this is how we are changing things, by making sure that poaching is not worth the risk of being caught.
Jeremy Goss, Big Life Kenya