But for many people, especially those outside of Africa, the story of these men and women across South Africa that risk their own lives in support of our wildlife, is largely unknown. What follows is an all to common story in many reserves in South Africa, it’s not any one specific reserve, but the story is commonly recounted around the Lowveld towns. From the anti-poaching heroes perspective, here’s what it feels like to to be a part of their world ….
“A loud “crack” pierces the still of the African night …. clearly audible are the high pitched screams from an animal taking it’s last breath. Their resounding echo chills you to the bone and a hushed silence now prevails around the bush. Another statistic is added to the greatest scourge in conservation in our lifetimes, another rhino lies dead, brutally mutilated for the sake of man’s greed. One more step is taken towards extinction by the last truly prehistoric mammal on African soil … the Black Rhino and White Rhino will soon be merely a book reference or “Google search” for the next generation of our children. It’s a conservation disaster, it’s a human disgrace.”
“A group of hardened, “
While “politicians” debate the merits of Trade versus Anti-Trade, while landowners squabble over the merits of retaining rhino stock on their reserves and quibble over the budgets required to protect their animals, there is a group of men who selflessly risk their lives in the name of conservation. They go largely un-noticed, largely unappreciated and lay their life on the line to protect Africa’s iconic wildlife for a modest paycheck. It’s time that these guys get their moment in the spotlight ….. the men and women who protect our reserves, care for our wildlife, protect our lodges and homes. Thousands of people the world over reel daily at the horrors of poaching splashed across social media. The mutilated animal images have become common place. It’s time we honour those people who put their life on the line daily to support our ideals of conservation, who do the job most of us wouldn’t dream of doing and whose level of professionalism is largely unappreciated. They are the faces that you don’t see on social media.
Good old fashioned drill, which many people will remember from military service days, still remains the hallmark for instilling discipline and teamwork within the unit. It was clearly a matter of personal pride for the team that they completed the drills efficiently and with a demonstration of team work that the military themselves would have been proud.
The team are all professionally accredited and approved by the South African Police Service for firearms use. It should be remembered of course that the use of firearms is only for their own personal protection. In South Africa, poachers are apprehended to be dealt with by the legal system. There is on “shoot on sight” policy whic
Land owners, home owners, and lodge owners within the Blue Canyon Conservancy have a huge debt to pay to the team. Their operational efficiency and the outstanding professionalism ensures our homes, our investment, our lives and our wildlife remain safe. They ask for little in return, but our respect and our support especially when the team is in need of small inexpensive equipment items is a small price to pay. If you can help and are willing to help in any way drop me a line here at Nyumbani Estate.
“Everyone associated with Nyumbani Estate are proud of each and every one of you. We salute the real heroes of wildlife conservation”