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APRIL 2018 NEWSLETTER
 

Hello FRIENDS!  

HAPPY SPRING to everyone up north, and Happy Autumn to our friends in Southern Africa!  We're back after a brief hiatus, with some updates on our anti-poaching patrols, and GOOD NEWS from our Investigation Team.  

There was little to report earlier in the rainy season, as much-needed vehicle repairs and flooded roads kept our patrols to a minimum.  Also, we suffered the loss of our Investigations Team vehicle, when the driver was forced off the road by poachers.  Fortunately the driver was not injured, but the loss of that vehicle put our team out of operation for several weeks.  However, thanks to the generosity of our donors and friends, we were finally able to buy a new Investigation Team vehicle, and to get the rest of our anti-poaching vehicles in good working order.  Now, our team is up to full strength again, and starting to see some significant results! 
Read More Below...

 

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OUR INVESTIGATION TEAM IS HAVING AN IMPACT ON MANA POOLS!
MAYBE IT'S A SIGN OF JUST HOW EFFECTIVE THEY ARE --  but the poachers obviously see our Investigation Team as a serious threat.  For the second time in a little over a year, our Team vehicle was deliberately run off the road.  Fortunately, our driver was not seriously injured, but after attempting repairs, we concluded the vehicle was not economical to fix.  Thankfully, our wonderful donors really came through during our holiday fund-raising campaigns!  Through you, we were able to purchase a replacement vehicle.  That vehicle was placed in operation several weeks ago, and since then we've seen some terrific results.

First, after a week of surveillance, the Investigation Team arrested a wild life trafficker who was selling a python skin -- his sentence is pending.  Then a couple of weeks ago, another trafficker was arrested carrying a bag full of endangered pangolin scales.  (As you may know, pangolin are the most trafficked wild mammals in the world -- they are mostly sold to Asian countries where their meat is considered a delicacy and their scales are believed to have medicinal properties.  As a result of this trade, the species' survival is critically threatened.)  

And then, just days ago, the Investigation Team arrested 3 poachers and confiscated two pieces of ivory they had in their possession!  The Team will continue working with Parks' personnel to ensure these poachers are convicted and serve appropriate sentences in jail.  


These results were only made possible through the bravery and dedication of our Investigation Team -- and the loyal support of you, our donors and friends!  YOU ARE MAKING THE DIFFERENCE FOR THESE ENDANGERED ANIMALS.   It costs us about $2150/month to keep our investigation team going.  Please DONATE to support this important work.




 
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ALL OF OUR ANTI-POACHING PATROLS ARE BACK IN ACTION!

Our Anti-Poaching patrol vehicles really take a beating, especially on muddy, rutted roads during the rainy months.  Due to some much-needed repairs, they were mostly out of commission through the past two months, though we did keep at least one vehicle in operation at all times.  Fortunately, though it was rumored that poachers had been seen entering the Park, there were no reports of elephant carcasses found during this time.  Even more fortunately, we are now back in operation at full strength.  But it is a constant effort, requiring a consistent source of funds, to keep 4 patrol vehicles operating continuously in Mana Pools, and that is the minimum number of vehicles we feel is necessary to adequately monitor the Park.  We are grateful to have received a commitment for funding part of our food and fuel costs through cooperative arrangements with Zambezi Society and African Bush Camps -- but it still costs us a minimum of $8,000 per month for EACH patrol.  Please  DONATE GENEROUSLY to support these critically important and effective patrols!  

OUR COLLARING PROGRAM ENTERS PHASE II

Our initial program to place RADIO COLLARS on iconic bull elephants has also been a big success.  We have been able to collar 4 iconic bull elephants, which has enabled the Parks Ecologist to download extensive data on the movements of these animals.  Parks has now given us authority to collar 9 more elephants, and at with their direction, we are planning to collar 5 this spring/summer.  We therefore urgently need funds to purchase the necessary collars, and satellite feeds, in order to monitor and protect them.  The cost of collars and satellite tracking is approximately $5,000 per collar.  PLEASE CONSIDER DONATING TO PROTECT MORE ICONIC BULLS!

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 UPCOMING EVENT!  For those of you living in or near the San Francisco Bay Area, we would love to meet you at the Africa Adventure Company's Safari Soiree on April 21, 2018.  The event will take place at Waterbar Restaurant -- a spectacular location overlooking SF Bay and the Bay Bridge -- from 6:00-9:00 pm.  Please join us there to learn more about Bushlife Conservancy and the work we're doing to protect Zimbabwe's elephants!
DOUBLE YOUR DONATION! ASK 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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