Archive for KWS

Bush Warriors Founder, Dori Gurwitz, Remembers the First Burning of Kenya’s Ivory Stockpiles 22 Years Ago

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 21, 2011 by Dori G

 

Bush Warriors Founder, Dori Gurwitz, was only a teenager when he personally witnessed Kenya’s first burning of ivory stockpiles 22 years ago–an experience he will never forget.

Photo credit: Tony Karumba

In 1989, African wildlife conservation saw a historical event–one that many people did not think would happen. The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) lit aflame a massive ivory stockpile, underscoring their zero tolerance for the illegal ivory trade. No matter what political thoughts people and governments around the world had about Kenya at that time, one thing was very clear: the government was seriously committed to the preservation of its wildlife, at all costs. It got to a point that game wardens were given permission to kill, should they confront a poacher. This zero tolerance policy worked and, despite all of the challenges associated with being a new and developing nation, Kenya rose as a leader in wildlife conservation. The eco-tourism industry exploded!
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International Crime Syndicates Involved in Murder and Mutilation of Wildlife in East and Central Africa

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 18, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Africa’s largest-ever investigation of wildlife crime has unearthed a ton of illegal African elephant ivory, several animal pelts, and hippopotamus teeth, the Kenya Wildlife Service and INTERPOL announced this week. The undercover operation, coordinated by INTERPOL—the world’s largest international police organization—booked more than 60 alleged criminals in five African countries.

A victim of poaching

Among those caught were four Chinese nationals attempting to smuggle ivory curios out of Kenya’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. The rapidly growing presence of China in Africa is seen as a major driver of the ivory trade, experts say. Between 1998 and 2006, Chinese authorities seized an average of 39 tons of ivory each year, according to the United Nations Elephant Trade Information System.

Hippo’s have not only been a target of Bushmeat but their teeth and bones are used for carvings and jewelry

But wildlife authorities who participated in the sting—code-named Project Baba for Gilbert Baba, a Ghanaian ranger killed in the line of duty—say small-time traffickers arrested in recent weeks will lead them to bigger players.

Pendants from Congo made out of Hippo Teeth

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Acrobatic Pilot Saves Wild Animals in Kenya

Posted in Africa: Elephants with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2010 by kendickjerkins

An american acrobatic pilot renowned for her skills at air shows is teaching advanced flying skills to Kenyan pilots to help them spot wildlife poachers. Patty Wagstaff has won three acrobatic flying championships. She also trains pilots and has been lending her time and expertise to wild elephant conservation. Wildlife poachers have said the top deterrent to poaching wild animals is air patrols. Flying so low and at slower speeds to spot poachers is dangerous for pilots in Kenya who sometimes have only basic flying skills.

Wagstaff teaches them in week-long clinics, partly funded by the Charles A. and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation. From her they learn techniques that reduce mistakes which too often lead to crashes. They love to fly and care about wildlife, so they are happy to take to the sky and spot poachers. Wild elephants have been poached in Kenya for their ivory going back a long time. She has been working with the pilots for six years to reduce and stop it. The pilots there are associated with the Kenya Wildlife Service.

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