Zambia: Anti-poaching operation successes in June
In June the DSWF funded anti-poaching units in Zambia, including SAPU – the Special Anti-Poaching Unit – carried out a series of successful operations across Zambia.
The first SAPU operation was in Kasempa, where the team recovered two tusks and made two arrests while the second operation was 180km away in Solwezi. The picture shown is from the Solwezi operation which led to two arrests and the recovery of two large tusks.
After driving for nine long hours through the night the team arrived at a quiet guesthouse situated on the outskirts of the town where they met up with an informer. The suspects were persuaded to meet the undercover team at a secret location where they brought two tusks wrapped in old mealie-meal sacks. The team stepped out and, seeing the tusks in the car, immediately swung into action arresting both men after a brief struggle. Two large tusks weighing 25kg were recovered.
“The operations demonstrate that SAPU can be anywhere at anytime,” says GRI CEO, Sport Beattie. “Solwezi is a long way from the team’s base at Hook Bridge but these recent operations are sending out a clear and powerful message that poachers and traffickers will no longer go undetected.”
On the return to Hook Bridge, the team found that three bushmeat poachers had also been arrested in possession of sable, bushpig and warthog meat, a shotgun had also been seized. The following day four more poachers were arrested with civet, duiker, wildebeest and warthog meat and two shotguns were seized. The next day, an illegal fisherman was arrested in Blue Lagoon, his nets and boat were also seized. Six men were also found with bushmeat and leopard skin, making a total of 16 arrests over a period of five days.
With your help, the increased illegal activity is being countered by the teams that DSWF supports. But we still need to do more. For as little as £12 a day we can fund anti-poaching rangers on the frontline of conservation in Zambia to ensure that more poachers are caught and a strong zero-tolerance message is spread across the community.
For more on our work to stop wildlife crime in Zambia click here