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Sep 17, 2020

Anti-Poaching efforts prove to be successful

Thank you for helping to prevent poaching. We pleased to announce that our anti-poaching project, with your support, has been successful lately.

No poaching has been experienced at our Sanctuary for some time now and this means that our efforts are proving worthwhile. Clearing fence lines, regular day and night patrols, cams to help surveillance, and careful monitoring have helped. Without your support, this would not be have been possible as the cost of our night guards and day patrols that ensure our wildlife’s safety have been, and continue to be ongoing challenges. The work that this provides for Rural persons is greatly appreciated by them as each worker financially assists up to 10 extended family members. 

We have also ensured that our wildlife has sufficient feed during the dry winter months. There has not been much rain but we provide supplemental feed for our much-loved zebra and wildebeest. This also enables us to check on them each evening (and sometimes during the day) when they come up to their feeding area from their grazing areas in the dryer grass plains. The other wildlife species at Suni-Ridge are all browsers or mixed feeders and they continue to find sustenance in the foliage of our forest vegetation. We do however also assist nature by lowering some branches, as elephant would do, of the forest trees to ensure that babies of the browsers are able to reach new shoots and leaves.

The safety of our wildlife remains an important priority at Suni-Ridge and we continue to compassionately care for all our species and also protect the vast biodiversity of our Wildlife Sanctuary.

Some super great news is that the new male zebra that we have been waiting for, that was delayed by Lockdown, is to be arriving at last, on Monday 21 September! 

Thank you to each and everyone that has so kindly supported our beautiful wildlife and the protection of the Biodiversity of Suni-Ridge. 

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Jun 17, 2020

Thank you for helping medical treatment!

"Short Tail" with treated foot injury
"Short Tail" with treated foot injury

Dear Friends,

Thank you all for your support! With Covid-19 and lockdown, we continue to work tirelessly to maintain and protect the biodiversity of our Sanctuary, and most importantly we continue to provide the very best care for every animal that calls our Sanctuary home!

Your support of our medical fund has been greatly appreciated. It has helped with the following:

  • To treat “Short Tail” the wildebeest who’s injured foot became badly infected. Should he not have been treated, we would have had to euthanize him to prevent him from suffering an agonizing death. After his treatment, his wound is healing slowly, but each day we see an improvement.
  • A tragic event happened recently when we had a dreadful insurgence with poachers that set up many snares in the bush. We were able to cut the wire noose from both a mother wildebeest and her calf, but sadly we eventually had to bring in help to euthanize the mother as she had succumbed to stress that caused paralysis. The little female calf survived but she called incessantly for her mother for days. She is now doing well again and grazing with the zebra and the territorial wildebeest bull that is her father. We are taking urgent steps to upgrade our security and need all the support possible for this.
  • Recently we have experienced a very dry time and we have been supplementing our animal’s grazing with wildlife pellets. Although we feel that they are being "spoilt" (apart from injured Short Tail who needs to uphold his best immunity) we feel this is ok as we like to know that all our wildlife are settled and doing well during the sudden cold spell that we are now experiencing in our area.   

Thank you once again for your support and wishing you the very best health and safety.

Wildebeest calf & father outside our garden fence
Wildebeest calf & father outside our garden fence
Calf with zebra after loosing her mother
Calf with zebra after loosing her mother
Thank you for caring!
Thank you for caring!
May 26, 2020

Urgent help prevent poaching at Suni-Ridge due to Covid-19


News update on Suni-Ridge Sanctuary. 24 May 2020

Thank you all for your support! With Covid-19 and lockdown, we continue to work tirelessly to maintain and protect the biodiversity of our Sanctuary.

POACHING PREVENTION: Tragically we had a recent increase in poaching and over 85 snares were recovered after poachers entered our Sanctuary. They were disturbed by our night guard but unfortunately, some of our wildlife were snared. This was traumatic and terribly sad as 2 of our wildebeest were caught. We managed to release them but the female, that was a mother of a female calf, succumbed to stress. Eventually we had to euthanize her. The young calf is now cared for by the territorial bull, her father, and the zebra. This horrible event has placed us on high alert and we urgently need to increase our anti-poaching surveillance and prevention. We will be launching a fundraising outreach as we have to find support for this project.

RELOCATION OF ZEBRA: The good news is that we are, at long last, busy with arrangements to relocate a male zebra that needs to be moved. Suni-Ridge will provide an excellent home for him. The funds raised to bring in a mate for our female zebra is paying for the relocation costs. We will be sending photos!

EMERGENCY MEDICAL FUND: As nature cannot always be left to “take her course” in a Sanctuary, we have to prevent any animal from suffering unduly. We are pleased that our emergency treatment fund has helped us to treat an injured wildebeest bull that had massive swelling of his foot.

REMOVAL OF ALIEN INVASIVE VEGETATION: During this time of the year, follow up on the removal of alien plants is important. Our main concern is the Potato Creeper (solanum seaforthianum) that can crowd out indigenous trees and plants. Last year we removed it efficiently, but annual follow-up removal is always necessary, to prevent any regrowth from seeds. We are presently ensuring an effective follow up.

INDIGENOUS ORCHIDS A joy to light up our day has been the flowering of one of our indigenous orchids(cyrtorchus praetermissa ssp zuluensis) How beautiful to suddenly see this tiny orchid bloom.

Although the Covid-19 impact on our lives, has been stressful, we are Blessed to all be well. Day by day, we continue to work tirelessly with the protection of our rare and precious wildlife and their unique habitat in our Sanctuary.

Thank you all for your support.

We wish you all the best safety and health.

Janet Cuthbertson

 
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