Combating Poaching and Illegal Logging in Tanzania: Voices of the Rangers-Hands-on Experiences from the Field


Reactive measures • Adopting an effective patrol system, especially mobile foot patrols, to most-affected poaching areas. • Switching rangers to different ranger posts from time to time to increase performance, experience, knowledge, skills and exposure as they meet different people and new challenges. This also decreases corruption and ineffectiveness. • Setting up an ambush on most used trails of poachers to apprehend them where they enter and exit protected areas. Trained rangers, village game scouts, and students Over the course of 2015, 437 students were taught tracking skills and crime-scene management. This took place in the second term, from January to June. Among these participants were 41 serving rangers/game scouts from Tabora Anti-Poaching Unit, Friedkin Conservation Fund and Ugalla Game Reserve. All followed courses on tracking and crime-scene management, first aid, wildlife law and the Evidence Act, survival skills and combating counter-poaching patrol techniques. In addition, a one-week refresher course was given to 155 of 450 newly employed rangers who had not received tracking and crime- scene management training during their degree courses.

The following measures have proven effective in Grumeti and Ikorongo Game Reserves.

Proactive measures • Establishments of sustainable communities’ projects – adjacent community involvement in wildlife projection will be effective only when they have a source of income to sustain their basic needs, in order to minimize use of wildlife resources and their engagement in poaching. • Improvement of conservation education and involvement of adjacent community in conservation of wildlife resources through increase in – and proper management of – knowledge and skills in Wildlife Management Areas, Game Controlled Areas and Open Areas. • Intelligence-gathering outside Protected Areas, especially in villages surrounding Game Reserves, National Parks, Game Controlled Areas, Wildlife Management Areas and Forest Reserves, in order stop organized poaching. • Planning patrol strategies by using maps to narrow the focus to zones where animals and relevant trees are located, in conjunction with tourist attractions and other managerial planning and activities. Increased use of GPS coordinates in patrolling reports. • Use of Elite Rangers who are familiar with the areas and the techniques used by poachers and their language. They can move very stealthily with a hidden satphone to report poaching activities to fellow rangers, who respond and make arrests. • Creation of observation posts and use of binoculars to observe long-distance and night vision goggles. • Motivation of rangers through incentives, job promotion and short-course training to improve their workforce performance.


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