ūüéĄDECEMBER¬†2017 NEWSLETTERūüéĄ
 
SEASONS GREETINGS
FROM OUR FAMILY TO YOURS!
Clockwise from top:  Tusker, Gnarly, Eddie, Fred and Boswell.

Hello Friends!  

Wishing You All
Peace, Health, and Happiness this Holiday Season! 

 As this year comes to a close, we  want to thank you all for your loyal and generous support.  We also want to update you on our recent activities in the field, and tell you our hopes and plans for the coming new year. And finally, we want to remind you that we are still raising funds under our matching campaign.  Some generous donors have given us $10,000, and have asked us to raise a matching amount.  Some of you have contributed already, and we are very grateful for that support.  But we are still far short of our goal.  Please consider donating before the end of the year, while your donation is still fully tax deductible.  And remember, it's not too late to DONATE AS A GIFT for loved ones and friends!

 

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ANTI-POACHING UPDATE
Thanks to your generosity, we're now able to send out three patrols per day (soon to be four), with an average of 3 rangers in each patrol, covering an average of 100 km/day.  Bushlife Support Unit Trust (BSU), our sister organization in Zimbabwe, is working collaboratively with other organizations in Mana Pools to ensure a wider area is covered, and to combine resources to provide food, fuel and other supplies for expanded patrols and for road-building efforts.  BSU has also set up a new remote base near the confluence of the Rukomechi and Zambezi Rivers, with tents, a water bowser, a vehicle and driver.  This area was becoming a hot spot for poachers entering from Zambia, but the new base seems to be effective in stopping further incursions -- another demonstration that anti-poaching patrols do work!
Our biggest challenge has been the cost and effort required to keep our anti-poaching vehicles in working order.  From August to October, we were only able to send out an average of one patrol per day, since most of our vehicles needed major repairs.  The rugged terrain of Mana Pools is extremely hard on even the toughest four-wheel drive, especially in the rainy season. Parts often have to be imported from Dubai or elsewhere, at considerable expense.  And BSU has had to hire a full time mechanic, at a cost of $600/month, just to keep up.  

As a result, we've had to reduce our spending on other items, in order to cover the cost of vehicle maintenance and repair -- causing a severe dent in our finances.  Please consider donating to help us cover these and other anti-poaching patrol costs!  CLICK HERE

Exciting News About Our Elephant Collaring Program!

As reported previously, we have put collars on the iconic elephants Boswell, Tusker, Gnarly, and Fred. We're pleased to report that our CEO, Nick Murray, has been asked to join the board of Zimbabwe's Elephant Crisis Management Team -- official recognition of the great work Nick and his BSU team have been doing in Mana Pools.  As the first to implement an elephant collaring program under the direction of ZimParks, Nick has been asked to head up the Team's biological monitoring efforts, along with a ZimParks ecologist.  He is hoping eventually to get funding to for an aerial survey of the Lower Zambezi, in order to update the Great Elephant Census. In the meantime, the ZimParks ecologist has been closely monitoring the movements of our 4 collared elephants for her PhD research, and has done extensive mapping of the territory covered by each.  So good to know she is keeping a protective eye on these beautiful boys!

In light of the success of this program, Nick has been given permission by ZimParks to collar 9 more elephants.  We have raised enough funds to collar 2 of them -- but we desperately need funds to collar 7 more, at a cost of $5,000 each.  If you can help us with this important work, please CLICK HERE.  

 

More Achievements by Our Investigation Team

Our Team continues to rack up significant success, including several poaching arrests and confiscations of live pangolin and contraband. The Team members often risk life and limb to bring these poachers to justice -- as was demonstrated recently when one of our informants was shot in the arm during an ambush, and another Team member had his vehicle forced off the road.  We are very grateful for the dedicated efforts of these soldiers in the war against poaching, and remain committed to their support.  Here are their accomplishments to date:
  • 86¬†poaching arrests, sentences of 700+ years in jail
  • 100+ tusks confiscated
  • 18¬†live pangolin recovered and sent for rehab and reintroduction to the wild
  • 10 firearms confiscated
  • 3 lion skins, 2 leopard skins, 3 croc skins recovered
We have been able to reduce our Investigation Team costs as other local organizations have stepped up and offered to chip in.  But we estimate it will still cost at least $850/month for informant rewards, operational costs, and vehicle support to keep this team going. Please help. DONATE NOW!
UPCOMING EVENTS!  

Our good friends at Africa Adventure 
Company will be hosting a series of evening get-togethers where we can connect with our supporters, exchange stories, and tell everyone a little bit more about our work.  Watch this space for an announcement of the cities and dates as soon as they are confirmed.
DOUBLE YOUR DONATION -- CONSIDER ASKING FOR AN EMPLOYER MATCHING GRANT.
 
Many companies will match charitable gifts by employees and their spouses, retirees, and board members.  Most will match dollar for dollar, and some will even double or triple your gift!  Take advantage of this opportunity.  Talk to your employer about their company match program and make your donation go even further.  
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8941 ATLANTA AVE. #405
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA 92646

INFO@BUSHLIFECONSERVANCY.ORG

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