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It has been a while since I last posted anything meaningful. The last year or so has brought much pain and tribulation to my already tumultuous life.   For many months now, this has been my profile photo on WhatsApp, and so many have asked me about it. Today, I am ready to tell this story. The image is of a three year old male leopard. A beautiful boy, in his prime. It took us two days to track him down just following his growls after reports came in from the community about a marauding “lion” that seemed to be caught in a snare trap. I suppose no one dared get close enough to see the rosettes on his fur gleaming in the sunshine. What a sight he was. We felt so privileged to be in his company. The bush was very dense, and we could only view him from about 80m away as we weren’t sure he wouldn't break free and pounce.   My phone camera has a pretty decent zoom, and I managed to get a decent enough photograph to send off to the KWS wildlife vet, in order for him to mobilise a plane.
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ANNUAL REPORT- Letter from our Founder.

A year ago we successfully began our Anti-poaching operations in Kipini, part of the Lower Tana Delta in Kenya. I remember sitting down with my rangers and telling them I could possibly only keep them for a year, but even if that is all we are able to manage, we will have saved a few lives and it will be worth it. They had a somewhat confused look on their face and said, “Ok madam.” Getting into our second year of operations, I now understand why they seemed so bewildered. They had a faith and confidence in me that I didn’t fully have in myself. I knew I could manage the team, and structure our operations well enough to combat the poaching here. I was confident about all the relationships I had quickly fostered with local administration and partners in conservation, and we hit the ground running. What I was unsure about, was our funding. We have been reliant on a goodwill donor who gave us an initial boost that allowed us to begin operations, but otherwise have been largely dependent o

Field Report: July 2020 "Tough stripes"

July was an eventful month as we discovered six illegal logging sites, disabled and recovered yet more snares, and came upon a zebra mare from our resident herd with an arrow sticking out of his neck! We frantically tried to reach the Kenya Wildlife Service veterinary officer who was in Tsavo treating an elephant, and continued to monitor the zebra well into the night. Thankfully, the next morning, he had managed to get the arrow out, we suspect by rubbing against a tree or something. The wound had no indication of the arrow head being embedded still, and the herd had calmed down considerably.  The teams successfully apprehended a suspect who had in his possession illegal palm wine, two snares, and cooking items. He also had what appeared to be a considerably large unidentifiable species of sea fish. He was booked at the station and was sentenced to community service.

Field Report: June- July 2020- "Lions and Loggers."

  It was a hectic month as our lion struck livestock in the beach zone. Kenya Wildlife Service mobilised the Problem Animal Control unit who promptly picked up the lion, citing fears that the community had threatened to poison him. Not wanting to risk losing another lion to conflict, the decision was made to relocate him into Tsavo.  Ulinzi Africa Foundation believes relocating apex predators should be a last resort. We therefore agreed together with Kenya Wildlife Service that we would secure a collar for the lion, who would then be monitored closely in order to try and mitigate Human Wildlife Conflict arising from this lion. He was safely relocated within the same ecosystem, in a different area and far away from the herders. Illegal grazing and cattle incursions continue to be a major challenge in this area. In another incident, our rangers were surrounded by herders who threatened them with machetes after they drove out nearly 3,000 head of cattle. We managed to contact the area chi

Field Report: May-June 2020 "Building Camp & Chasing Night Poachers"

  June was a month of rebuilding after returning to the field. The pandemic forced all members of the team to remain at home, observing government protocols to stay safe. When we finally returned to camp, we found it in a dilapidated condition, and decided to rebuild what we could. With support from partners and friends, we were able to purchase new mattresses and mosquito nets for the whole team, and also metal sheeting which was used to rebuild the long-drop and shower cubicles. We also worked on the gutter to harvest rainwater for emergencies into our camp 5000-litre tank.    Previously the long drop and shower facilities were covered in palm fronds, however due to heavy rains during the floods in the previous month, the structure began to fall apart. This is what the facilities look like now, with metal sheeting along the sides and the top to protect from the elements! We have placed the facilities away from the living quarters in a cleared area to also ensure everyone using the fa

Field Report - April- May 2020 "Our Communities"

  April was a rather uneventful month as operations were slowed down due to Covid-19.  Reports came in of a known poacher in the community area who had poached a zebra and taken it into his home during the night. Our efforts to mobilise a team were sadly fruitless, nonetheless he continues to be monitored. Further to this, our main activities in- field involved the relentless search for our livestock-raiding lion, whom we are preparing to collar as soon as he is found.  In April, communities in the Tana Delta were adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic paired with unprecedented floods.. Ulinzi Africa Foundation reached out to well-wishers and galvanised support with food relief. Through a successful appeal, we were able to feed 154 families in Onkolde community, 4 needy families in Mshagalato area, and 112 families in Asa region. We thank all those who came forward to support this appeal.

APU Field Report- March 2020

March was a relatively quiet month for us in the field, although one incident will remain etched in our memory for some time to come. There was a notable increase in bushmeat poaching incidents, with one topi sighted with an arrow embedded in it's head, and a zebra with a spear embedded in it's rear leg. Sadly both sightings were in the late evening and attempts to separate the injured animals from the herd for treatment proved futile. Attempts to find them on the following days were also regrettably, unsuccessful. On the 16th of March while on routine foot patrol, our rangers came upon a suspect engaging in illegal palm wine harvesting. The suspect immediately attacked our teams with a sharp knife and in the tussle ended up causing injury to himself as one ranger disarmed him. He was taken the hospital for treatment before being booked at the station. In total, the team issued one warning, made three successful arrests while one suspect escaped. A tota

APU Field Report- February 2020

February was an eventful month for the team. We conducted daily foot patrols successfully together with the Kenya Wildlife Service; and had the following results: 3 cases of illegal fishing: 1 net and 2 fishing spears were confiscated and suspects given warning. 3 cases of illegal palm wine harvesting: 2 knives and machetes were confiscated and suspects warned 2 cases of charcoal burning and transporting: 3 bags of charcoal, 1 spade and 2 shovels confiscated 1 case of deforestation: 10 posts recovered 1 case of bushmeat poaching: 2 snares and 1 bicycle recovered. A total of 6 warnings were given to suspects, while 2 suspects escaped arrest by our teams, who remain to follow up those incidents closely. Destruction caused by illegal palm wine harvesting  Doum palms have their leaves cut off to tap palm wine, they often die as a result Charcoal bag confiscated

A farewell to an elephant

My Tomorrow, Today.

My deepest desire is freedom. My earnest wish is peace. In my few years of fighting, we will win, i know this. There are days I wish to run and live free. Live joyfully among the beasts and the trees. Alas my heart cannot know peace. I was built, for bigger things. When the rivers run free, and the wilderness is safe I will create within it, my own little nest I shall not steal, I shall not burn This will be my right, this I will earn. No matter how many tears I shed, I will weep no more, indeed, I too, have bled. Pray for me, brother, my fight is yours for the children of tomorrow, this is our war. Until we are safe, and our souls truly free I continue to dream of my little nest under a tree. The city lights are too bright, it's sounds frighten me This is a new Africa, the belly of greed By day they smile, by night the steal, all of Africa's treasures, all our future meals. Those we hoped would bring salvation, are bit by demons, they are our damnation While others fall, and f