Rangers Face Dangerous and Difficult Circumstances in DR Congo
By John Lukas - President, White Oak Conservation Center, Inc.
ICCN Guards that Patrol the Okapi Wildlife Reserve
The wildlife of the Okapi Wildlife Reserve is under unprecedented pressures in recent months from not only illegal gold mining and elephant poaching, but as well from both rebel and army personnel seeking to gather ever greater amounts of bush meat for consumption and sale. As Mai Mai fighters have terrorized local communities, rangers stationed in this area of the DR Congo face a difficult and dangerous task of wildlife protection.
Presently rangers are restricted to patrolling away from areas where there has been recent conflict, but as circumstances allow, they will cast a wider net of protection, as before, throughout the Reserve. With the continued care and involvement of individuals and institutions from around the world, these rangers will be able to carry on in their important conservation work.
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