Photo credit: G. Nyanganji/WCS
Thank you for your amazing support of the Wildlife Conservation Society’s elephant protection efforts in Nigeria’s Yankari Game Reserve.
We are pleased to report that we were able to increase the number of camping patrols last quarter: from July to September, rangers completed 47 camping patrols, covering a total distance of 2,420 km—an increase from the previous quarter, when only 32 camping patrols were carried out. As a result of these renewed protection efforts, fourteen poachers were arrested during this period, in addition to nine Fulani herders who were illegally grazing cattle in the reserve. With the strong support of the local magistrate court, 86% of the poachers arrested received jail sentences of at least five months. Furthermore, thanks to efforts by the rangers, zero elephant carcasses were recorded this quarter.
However, significant challenges remain, including a shortage of funds for patrol allowances and field rations. In addition, an increase in crop raiding by elephants this quarter has affected over fifteen communities. As a result elephants are not only at risk from hardened poachers seeking ivory, but also irate farmers seeking revenge. In an effort to minimize this conflict between elephants and local communities, we continue to monitor movements of two elephants using satellite collars, ensuring that rangers provide constant protection to this herd and react promptly when the elephants leave the confines of the reserve to raid crops.
Despite numerous challenges, WCS is committed to ensuring the survival of Yankari’s elephants, which make up the last viable population left in Nigeria. From all of us at WCS, thank you so much for your support of our work!