There is only so far that a ranger can walk. But there is no limit to the distance that information can travel.
Two weeks ago, one of our rangers went on leave, only to find a person waiting impatiently on his doorstep. An informer, trusted to report wildlife crimes to us, and rewarded for it. The informer had something urgent to report: he knew of a man in possession of two elephant tusks, with plans to sell them.
The Big Life ranger immediately passed the information on to senior Big Life security personnel, who contacted the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS). Their response was quick, and we coordinated a meeting between the Big Life informer and KWS.
Based on details about when, where and in what vehicle the suspect would be travelling, KWS set up an ambush and managed to catch the man red-handed with a pair of tusks. And the thing that gets us excited is that this arrest happened 200 miles from Big Life headquarters!
Our informer network is spread wide, and only with this web of community connections can you start to make poaching and trading a prohibitively risky business. When poachers act, somewhere, someone will be watching…