The Little Rock Zoo

.The Little Rock Zoo needs to step up and care for the animals better! Please read the several artciles here with deaths, sickness and a bald chimp!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Anti-poaching Operation in Cameroon

Some 15 people have been detained following a huge anti-poaching operation involving the military, gendarmes and game guards in southeast Cameroon.
During the operations, war guns, elephant, chimpanzee and gorilla meat were confiscated.
Initially, 22 people were caught during the operations, while 15 were arrested and taken to Yokadouma. Amongst the 15, 11 have been detained in the gendarmerie cell while 4 have been charged to court and are now in the Yokadouma Prison awaiting trial. The Divisional Delegate for Wildlife and Forestry in the region, Colonel Pandong Eitel, said they will press charges against the suspects and ensure that concomitant sanctions are meted out on them.

Several war arms including two AK 47 rifles (Kalashnikov), one 458-caliber rifle, three 375-caliber rifles and a cartridge containing 36 Kalashnikov bullets were amongst 30 guns confiscated during the operation that took place in Southeast Cameroon from April 25 to May 1. 15 people were also arrested and 1000 kg of bush meat seized.

With the cooperation of local traditional rulers, 70 houses, in which suspect poachers were said to be hiding, were systematically searched. The anti-poaching teams that split in eight groups also carried out in-forest and maritime patrols. Amongst those arrested was a municipal councillor, suspected to be a white collar elephant poacher in Moloundou, south of Nki national park. Three other notorious elephant poachers, a Central African, a Congolese and a Cameroonian were picked up around Boumba Bek and Lobeke national parks.

Some 3000 wire snares were systematically dismantled and several rolls of wire cables seized. Thirty poisoned spears were also taken out in villages around Boumba Bek national park, while about 40 poacher camps were destroyed, two motorbikes and 200 kg of marijuana confiscated.

Almost all wildlife species in the Southeast of Cameroon were seized, including flagship species; elephants, gorillas and chimpanzees. Two tusks, 3 elephant tails and pieces of elephant meat were taken out during the operation. Gorilla and chimp remains also featured amongst the species, including pangolins, different types of duikers, sitatungas, buffalos, parrots, tortoise, crested mangabay, otter and more.

At the close of the operations recently, a relay anti-poaching team intercepted a vehicle transporting huge quantity of bush meat including chimpanzees concealed in the boot of the car. The driver and two other suspects abandoned the vehicle and lurched into the bush. This incident, that happened just hours after the massive operation, demonstrates the degree of poaching pressure in the Southeast of Cameroon. “This calls for vigilance and intensification of anti-poaching efforts, for the poachers are still very active and do not seem ready to relent,” declared Pandong.

*He is a staff of WWF-Cameroon’s Communication Office"


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