Sunshine On Their Souls

With the sun streaming through my mum’s open window, we all sit together sharing our thoughts over tea and biscuits. Kayleigh (our seven year old grand daughter) pulls out her note book and wearing her beautific smile, her piercing blue eyes meet mine. ‘Please Gog…I need to interview someone from the olden days.’ All I can hear is the hysterical laughter from my family members and I take a deep breath and I get down to answering some  questions.

Question 1 ….What did elephants used to look like in the olden days?

Answer ……There were lots of elephants and many of them had great big tusks

Question 2…..What has changed about elephants, rhinos and lions in your life?

Answer…..They are becoming endangered because they are being poached. This is sad and lots of babies have NO mothers!

Question 3….Why are they poaching these animals?

Answer…The poachers sell the animal’s body parts like tusks, horns and lion bones. This is illegal.

Question 4….What are we doing to help?  What do you do to help?

Answer…   We support Chengeta Wildlife who train anti-poaching rangers in Africa to stop them killing wildlife.

I write a blog to educate people through poetry and up to date articles on wildlife.

Kayleigh’s thought….We need to change…if we don’t, there will be NO ELEPHANTS, NO RHINOS AND NO LIONS left in the wild! Their life is in our hands.

 

 

I am proud to share her project with you all.

 interview with Gog

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Her enthusiasm for her project filled me with such pride. My poem is dedicated to Kayleigh and all young people with compassionate young minds and huge hearts. Our world needs these young custodians.

 Sunshine On Their Souls

Hungry young mind still sweet with childish song

Author of her exciting journey…her wide smile strong

Deep blue eyes sparkling….crystal clear

Encompassing nature and all things we hold dear

Spreading her young wings….seeing as the eagle sees

Hearing the cries and heeding their pleas

Stretching her mind….weaving gilt edged rays

Iridescent tears flow at mans greedy ways

Allow the sun to lay a gentle hand on her soul

Spreading warmth and compassion…keeping her mind whole

She is part of the future….riding the breeze

Beaming sunsets and leaf laden trees

Carrying the rhythm of life with each careful tread

A future custodian….protecting the thread

Elephants, lions and rhinos…icons of these troubled lands

Their futures’ lying firmly in human hands

girls with their tee shirts

I support Chengeta Wildlife and so can YOU

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Young Minds…New Sunrises

Over the last couple of months I have spent close on eight hours in the company of some special young people with inquiring minds and I am so proud to be able to share their posters and a few of their essays with you all.  During my last visit, I was privileged to be able to speak to each student about their chosen subject for their posters and essays and I was thrilled by their enthusiasm and passion. It did my heart good to listen to these future custodians telling me how they had done their research and it was exciting to see that it was not only the large iconic animals that were appealing to these children…but tragically, the common thread throughout is the interference from the ‘two legged creature’.

All of the children are aged between  9 and 11.

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Blue Whales

Luke
The worst thing I’ve ever seen is a beached whale. The whale’s lying there like an exhausted dad after he’s got home from work. Only this whale was motionless, like it was waiting for something. But I knew that it was dead. A harpoon-shaped hole in its body. I made a promise to myself that I would try to stop the horrid thing known as whaling.

 

If you are wondering how many whales are alive there are 1,500 to 2,500. These creatures are being hunted. The problem is that if these species go extinct there will be too many krill and the ocean will be filled with krill and there will be no space for other sea creatures to live.

 

Later on they made a company that was called the International Whaling Commission, the IWC. You can join or support the IWC to help these poor creatures.

 THE ICONIC RHINO

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Black Rhinos

Alexander:

Black rhinos used to thrive in Africa. Now they are critically endangered. Every day rivers of blood lash out of the black rhinos. I’m certain that in their ancient minds they would say why? Why would you do this? I have children to look after yet you shoot me, rip out my horns like you don’t care.

 

We need to help them. Their horns (made of hair) are taken from them. In the USA, the black market sells black rhino horns for $30,000 per pound. They are brutally killed and have their horns hacked off.

 

We can’t ignore this. The black rhinos are magnificent creatures and soon they will be extinct. If the black rhinos die out the entire food chain will be thrown out of balance. To change their future you could start your own save the rhino committee and join others. Please do it for the black rhinos’ sake. We can’t allow th

White Rhinos

Joshua:

Northern White Rhinos are becoming extinct. Only six remain, all in captivity. Their horns cost more than gold or cocaine! If they were in the wild they’d live in grasslands and savannahs. They were poached for sport and for their horns.

 

This is a real problem because only six remain in the world. These knights in shining armour used to roam freely and weren’t afraid to fight. In a couple of years the Northern White Rhino will be extinct.

 

It may be too late to save these magnificent animals but it isn’t too late to save other like the Southern White Rhino. There are less than 14,500 Southern White Rhino left. These live in the southern part of Africa. Poachers shoot these knights in armour then cut their horns off.

 

There is enough time to save the Southern White Rhino and to stop this terrible sport known as poaching. All it takes is a group of people to care for these animals. We can’t let both die out. So please help; if they could talk they’d tell you themselves. And together we will stop poaching. Thank you for your time and help.

 

White Rhino

Amelie:

Why? Why is my only question. Why is it that poachers can be so careless and selfish enough to kill the magnificent white rhino? To be honest I think poachers are more of a beast than any other animal.

Trekking along, these harmless creatures roam freely, only to be shot with a silver bullet going straight through its protective armour. Sadly, due to poachers, one or two white rhinos are lost per day.

Poachers use these valuable horns for decoration and trophies but they are mainly ground up and used in traditional Chinese medicine.

Due to poachers cutting off the rhino’s greatest possession, the horn, rangers now are forced to do the same except rangers do it humanely. This helps because if a poacher sees a rhino with no horn they will know that means no treasure and they will move on. I feel people should acknowledge this.

These knights in shining armour have more courage than any other human knight, risking their life with every step they take along the unforgiving grassy African plains. I know that if this over-sized beast could talk it would ask you to support the white rhino charities, but it is just too weak so I am asking you on behalf of them.

POLAR BEARS

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BEAUTIFUL PANDAS

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CHARMING PENGUINS

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THE UNIQUENESS OF THE CHAMELEON

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Chameleons

Toby

Chameleons is an endangered species. They need shelter to blend in with their surroundings but now they can’t do that because of loggers and bush fires in the Amazon. The loggers and bush fires are destroying 150 different habitats and more animals.

The chameleon, slowly moving but tight on the branch. Staying still waiting for a buzzing fly to come past…suddenly…the chameleon’s tongue whipping out to get the fly, they never miss a shot. They blend in with their surroundings keeping an eye on what’s going on left and right. It’s amazing how they change colour to their surroundings, from the tops of the trees to the roots of a bush.

You could spread the word or you can start a campaign to stop loggers from cutting down trees. So please try and stop loggers for chameleons.

THE QUEENS OF THE SNOW

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Snow Leopards

Ethan:

Lifeless, the furry head thumped on the ground, eyes once green like pure emeralds now a deep, hollow black. India, the most densely populated area of land for snow leopards. White snowflakes hang in the air like stars you might see hanging from a child’s ceiling. In a few hours a man will come along strip the animal of its skin just so it can lay on the floor of someone’

s living room and somebody can say “Ooh, that’s nice.” Lives like this of the innocent snow leopard are lost every single day.

People are pretty much the main reason for snow leopards dying out. If we want to expand we just do it, no thought about what effect this will have on the eco-system, the mountain habitat washed away, and with the habitat goes lives, snow leopards. Beautiful, sleek powerful legs so elegant. They waltz around the mountain, spot a human and bang! An innocent life lost.

If snow leopards become extinct it will have a massive effect on the eco-system. Many different things will happen, herbivores will destroy all plant life, meaning their extinction and bees will not be able to make honey or pollinate flowers. So as you can see the impact will be huge on the eco-system. So help stop this!

Some ways to stop snow leopards dying out is to adopt them through WWF or other companies dedicated to saving animals. This will have the animals placed in care and people will help them. They will also train people and help to arrest these ruthless poachers, those without souls.

There is hope; although those emerald green eyes will not shine again, many others can.

 

Snow Leopards

Alisha:

Snow leopards are the most magnificent creatures; your eyes are immediately hypnotised by their beauty. But do you know about the war between the snow leopards and the poachers? If not, may I say the snow leopards are losing?

Unfortunately to say these amazing extraordinary creatures are being poached: only 3,500 to 7,000 are left in the world – if you don’t do something about it then they’ll become extinct.

Why should these poor innocent creatures deserve to suffer? They don’t. I saw one once at a zoo and I was blown away by how precious these creatures are 0 their round, dopey eyes look sad yet at the same time their smiling, curious creatures make me interested by their mind blowing darkened gown topped with the crown jewels of snow. I love these creatures and it would break my heart into a million pieces if my grandchildren couldn’t see them. When I saw one in the zoo my eyes were fixed on their green, emerald eyes, looking at me with disappointment then it turned around leaving me ashamed.

The large adult male stands tall like a soldier ready to defend its family 0 snow leopards are just like us, they defend their family no matter what. Due to this my dream would be to see a snow leopard in the wild in their winter wonderland habitat where the mother of the lot watches the favourite prey, wild goat! She would let out a loud shriek, then two smaller snow leopards would come sneaking up camouflaged in the snow playing with each other – their think fluffy fur like silk would be hidden under the snow. Their big puppy dog eyes would stare at one another then once more carry on playing.

They are so sweet and amazing these creatures but they are dying. There is a way to stop this war and see the snow leopards rise up as the rightful king of the snow! If you share the same passion for snow leopards then get involved, learn and see what you can do. Put a smile on their face for a change. It would make the world of difference.

CHEETAHS CRYING IN CRISIS

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THE MAGICAL HEDGEHOG

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RESCUE CENTRE

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WONDERFUL POSTERS FROM A CLASS OF CARING CHILDREN.

THANK YOU ALL FOR INVITING ME NOT ONLY ONCE…BUT THREE TIMES INTO YOUR

CLASSROOM. IT HAS BEEN AN EXHILARATING AND SPECIAL EXPERIENCE FOR ME.

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AND OF COURSE….THEY ARE KEEPING UP TO DATE

ON WHAT RORY IS DOING …THROUGH CHENGETA WILDLIFE

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Speaking Out

 

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‘If you notice anyone falling asleep…you will know that you are boring the hell out of them.’ The President of the Rotary Club pulls my leg during dinner. I can feel a lump of bread the size of a  freshly baked roll lodge firmly in my throat and my heart takes pleasure in pounding against my ribs. A nervous laugh squeezes past the lump of bread. I have never embarked on any form of public speaking before and I am so grateful to have my best friend Gary by my side.

I think back to the day towards the end of 2013 when a Zimbabwean contemporary of mine told me in no uncertain terms that there was absolutely nothing that one little person could do to make any difference in the fight against the scourge of poaching. I straighten my shoulders…as just over one year on….I am helping to make a difference. I allow my mind to meander back through the years to the untamed bush that I feel such an enormous part of and I can smell these animals that I am so passionate about and I feel confident that I am ready to stand up and be counted.

I lead the audience back in time embracing the wide open sky and warmth of the African sun that Gary and I have been privileged enough to have spent our entire lives (apart from the last 10 years) enjoying. I share my adoration of these immense creatures with the room offering them a breathtaking glimpse into the world of the elephants. I can feel the emotion clawing up my throat and I want this audience to love and respect these soulful creatures as much as I do before Gary starts his talk with a graph depicting a grotesque and alarming annihilation of these animals and the continual ‘War Zone’ that they are battling to survive in. This is a graph that should shock any thinking and compassionate person into feeling a sense of alarm….and shame.

genocide of african elephant

There is silence in the room and I can see that these men are shocked at the horrific number of elephants that have been slaughtered throughout Africa over the last century and some…Africa’s elephants, rhinos and other wildlife is under attack from poachers, and many species face imminent extinction if the killing continues at current rates. 

It is then time to offer what we see as being such a huge part of the solution on the ground.

CHENGETA WILDLIFE

Our mission is to deter the trade of illegal wildlife products by giving existing wildlife protection teams the skills and knowledge they need to protect wildlife and themselves, by educating the market on the destruction caused by the purchase of illegal wildlife products and by creating awareness and gathering support worldwide.’

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I can feel myself bursting with pride at what has been achieved. Chengeta Wildlife was started by Lisa Groenweg (USA) in conjunction with Rory Young, a conservationist on the ground. Rory Young, through Chengeta Wildlife has single-handedly trained 120 rangers in different African countries in the last year. He has based his training on the strategies from the ‘A Field Manual For Anti-Poaching Activities’ that he has written in conjunction with Jacob Alexseyev.

Co-author Rory Young explained that through ALERT he intends to provide training free of charge to Africa’s anti-poaching units to increase their effectiveness.  The doctrine and training includes: pro-active and reactive investigation techniques to understand the movements, areas of operation and modus operandi of poachers; surveillance and tracking skills to locate the poachers – developed with many years’ experience and incorporating aspects of anthropology, podiatry and forensic science; apprehension techniques to ensure a safe and effective method to capture poachers; and most importantly, how to prevent poaching in the first place.  He says, “Training is conducted within local and international laws and adapted to local conditions and sensitivities.  Wherever possible local trainers are to be used, and, the training of local individuals able to provide future training, is always the primary goal.  What we need is for these improved techniques to spread like wild-fire.

“This field manual is capable of transforming the fight against poaching dramatically.” -Rory Young

This manual is a first of it’s kind and is currently being put into modules by the University of Coventry. These 120 rangers have returned to their different posts and provided the skills and knowledge they have learnt from Rory to the men under their command.

As a result…750 rangers have now received this comprehensive training.

 

The-True-Cost-of-Ivory-Trinkets-Infographic1

 

‘A huge THANK YOU to Joe Chernov, Robin Richards and Leslie Bradshaw for creating the infographic below for Rory Young and Chengeta Wildlife!‘   I urge you all to share the link far and wide for us.

Rory in Malawi

100% of monies raised go directly to funding these training camps and Rory is producing fantastic results. For the past month Rory has been in Liwonde National Park in Malawi. 30 rangers received training and equipment in an advanced ‘Anti-Poaching and Trafficking Course’. A huge part of the training is an ‘In course live anti-poaching’ operation where Rory goes out with the trainees in the field and puts in practice the methods they have learnt during the course. These men have managed to apprehend some 33 poachers in Malawi in the last month.

Chengeta’s reputation is spreading and a further 12 countries have asked for our help….Rory’s itinerary for 2015 is full.

I loved my evening and am delighted that two more talks have been organised with dates to be confirmed and I know that between working with the schools and doing more presentations….our itinerary for raising awareness on the plight of the African wildlife…..

And showing people what Chengeta Wildlife are achieving….our 2015 itinerary is also going to be full. We all have a voice…Please use it.

Future Custodians

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A feeling of warmth embraces me despite the chilly blustery breath of winter that leaves frozen kisses on the nape of my neck. Pushing my hands deeper into the toasty pockets of my warm coat I quicken my steps, bending into the wind. I smile brightly at the two young students who bounce up to the playground gate to welcome me in with twinkling eyes and cheerful voices. I wend my through the noisy happy silence shredding playground into the warmth of the reception area where I sign in before rubbing my numb hands, trying to get the blood circulating. I am met by the lovely teacher, Rebecca who also greets me warmly and we both disappear down the corridor and into the bright and uplifting classroom.

I take a seat allowing my eyes to roam around the room enjoying the colourful artwork beaming down from the walls…..a little piece of every child’s personality brightening up the room.

Footprints

‘I really want to go to my extra maths lesson.’ I can hear the pleading in his voice. His shoulders sag in defeat at the gentle but firm response.’

My heart flutters madly in my chest….’No pressure.’ I whisper to myself. I always did like a challenge and hoped that this young boy would enjoy the afternoon. My tongue suddenly feels a little dry as the inner folds of my cheeks glue to the roof of my mouth. I can feel 23 pairs of mischievous eyes on mine as a shy ray of sunshine breaks free from the gray cloud and spills gently through the classroom window. These children had spent precious time that morning looking at ‘Chengeta Wildlifes’ website, and watching and listening to a clip of Rory Young talking about the problems facing our wildlife….and they are ready for me this afternoon.

rory young twitt

I start to talk, knowing that I need to grab their attention within a few words. I lead them back in time to my first memory of seeing a dead elephant and I can see their eyes widen in surprise and shock and despite the sound of my voice, I can also hear the veld gently breathing and feel the warm sun embracing my bare arms.  Almost an hour later we are still discussing not only the magnificent African elephant but Chengeta Wildlife, my blog and the different words and phrases I use to appeal to my readership.

This class of hungry minds fill me with unblemished optimism. They are the future custodians of this magical planet that we all share. If I can help them to see as the eagle sees, we will improve our impact on this world we call earth. Two hours of lively interaction with these wonderful young people is like balm for the soul and again I cannot talk highly enough at the quality of teaching and the respect shown to me by the children.

little ellie - big ears

I take great pleasure in sharing three short essays with you all. Megan (9), Ben (10) and Amelie (11), and I can feel my heart bursting with pride…such incredible insight, depth and wonderful powers of description from all of them. Ben, I am pleased to say…stayed with the class….he did not go to his extra maths lesson and has written an amazing piece of work. Please enjoy and feel free to comment as they will be reading this blog.

rory young cause

Megan (aged 9)

Do you need ivory ornaments?  No. People don’t need to kill elephants for beautiful jewellery, because there is already something beautiful out here. To kill a whole elephant just for its tusks is cruel. These creatures are heart-warming and have emotions too. There are only 400 000 elephants left in Africa and one hundred die every day. We need to act quickly. If this carries on, I’ll be telling tales of when elephants were alive when I’m older. I don’t want to do that. I want to tell tales of how we managed to save the elephants from near extinction.

When I saw a clip of elephants helping each other to get the baby out of the water, I realised how much like humans they are.  Some elephants policed the area whilst others guided the baby out of the water. It was amazing how elephants worked as a team, just like we would if we were trying to get a baby out of the water.

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Ben (aged 10)

Why do elephants deserve to die?  They don’t.

So why do we kill them?  So that some rich person can wear an ivory trinket.

Over one hundred elephants die every day due to greed and poaching.

Poaching is a monstrosity that should be stopped.

When the matriarch, the leader of the herd dies, the rest of the herd may go delinquent, meaning that they will run and destroy villages, causing the whole herd to be shot, and why? All because one poacher shot a wizened old elephant for a tusk.

Imagine that you are in the bush, imagine that you wake up in the morning, to find this: I fall to my knees, tears falling down my cheeks, an elephant, stone dead at my knees. Halfway up its flank is a small round hole. Its tusk is gone, and this poor creature is dead, and why? I look up, squinting my eyes into the bright early morning sun. And to my horror I see lying on the horizon the body of yet another dead elephant. I swear that I will come back here, for the elephants of Hwange need our help. For they are declining, one every fifteen minutes.

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Amelie (aged 11)

Why do elephants deserve to die? They don’t. These heart-warming creatures have strong emotions but now unfortunately have to watch every step they take along the scalding dusty ground. As most of us now know, one hundred elephants die every day and fewer are born.

Plodding along, the elephants police their young, making sure they are following the almighty, knowledgeable leader, guiding them to the next safe stop.

At their next stop the young elephants have hungry minds and venture through the unknown canopy of trees that haven’t got their exotic green raincoats on because they have been scolded by the forceful sun. Once the youngsters stop they dance and skip around like young children in the playground.

As for the teenage elephants, left alone they are a delinquent gang, chilling in the sun, squirting cool refreshing water over each other.  Soon after their fun stops for the wise old elephants are ready to start their next trek into the exhausted horizon.

Whilst on their trek the leader picks up on danger warnings echoing all over Africa’s deserted plains.  These valuable elephants can pick up a warning from a very far distance, a bit like humans and their mobile phones.

After the warning, despite being gentle creatures, these grey, wrinkly animals are prepared to fight in one big mass of power, making great swirls of gold dust. I can now see why Jenny is hypnotized by these tremendous animals.

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I now look forward to my next visit to this magical classroom where I will be reading and looking at their ‘blogs’. How exciting is this?

Only by listening can we hear the desperate cries from the ever declining population of wildlife. Become part of the solution….look at our ‘Chengeta Wildlife’ website, like our Chengeta Wildlife face book page, share it and help if you can.

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Obscene Celebrations…Elephant Steaks

Victoria Falls….one of the seven natural wonders of the world.  A powerful 1.7 kms wide curtain of Zambezi water thundering over the 100m drop…a roar that can be heard from 40 kms away. A plume of spray and gossamer mist reaches high into the azure heaven…a spectacular watery mirage of tear drop silver. While elephant lovers around the globe celebrate China’s one year ban on ivory imports, these same eyes will be focused on this paradise where ‘celebrations’ of a different kind will be taking place. Mugabe, although a shadow of his former self  will be gnawing his way through an elephant steak as he presides over his 91kg cake in one of the most beautiful settings in the world. Guests will feed their over stuffed bellies while Zimbabwe’s poor drift in the stream of poverty, disease and unemployment. The guests…in a trance of full bellies, beer, golden sunsets and sultry breezes do no waste a thought on the poverty of their fellow Zimbabweans or on a boma full of captured elephant calves in Hwange.

Zimbabwe’s ruling party…a cauldron of toxic crime and corruption watch on with unfathomable eyes and itchy fingers.

 

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Elephants, an ancient law of life, each unique in their own way are being crushed under the heels of supposed civilization while lavish festivities costing $1 000 000 are being spent on the President’s 91st birthday party. While guests party… out in the magical bush..in the golden silence of early evening, the shimmering leaves appear to be holding their breath. Africa’s giants ghost into view, puffing up small whirls of flaxen dust that appear to hang motionless. Their matriarch, her large and noble head bejewelled with creamy tusks is held high, her trunk crisscrossed with deep fissures swings back and forth like a pendulum. Robed in deep wrinkles and worry…there is a sadness in her eye. She is aware of their predicament. Mortality hounds her and the herd. She is watchful, swishing the air with the end of her bristly tail and breathing in the fresh scent of evening.  Despite her heavy bulk of 10 000 lbs (10 tonnes), she has the lightness and grace of a dancer. She is an ambassador for her kind, ‘Loxodonta africana.’

watermarked....elephants caught in the web of human deceit

Zimbabwe is my home country even though I watch from afar. With Mugabe’s birthday rhetoric…my heart bashes against my rib cage. What will become of the wildlife that walk in the untamed splendour of the Zimbabwean bush?

However, I do not look the other way. I will continue to fight for the elephants, rhinos and other precious wildlife. I will continue to saturate the air with hope as Rory Young continues to give of his time, knowledge and skills to Anti-Poaching Units through out Africa. We need your help. Please continue to share our posts and donate if you can.

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‘An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.’

Mahatama Gandhi

Chengeta Wildlife.

We need your support

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Ensuring A Future

little ellie with trunk up

I was approached about six weeks ago and asked if I would be prepared to share some descriptive writing passages from my Jennys Jumbo Jargon with a class of 9 to 10 year olds during their English lesson. I was thrilled. I spent roughly two and a half hours with this class full of hungry minds and I was captivated by Rebecca’s teaching methods and how responsive and inter-active the children were.

This coming Wednesday 25th, I am going back to this same class of children to talk to them about my blog, elephants and Chengeta Wildlife. We will then read through a couple of extracts from a few of my blogs and discuss their purpose, how they persuade and the different choices of vocabulary etc. I am beside myself with excitement at sharing my passion of Africa’s untamed splendour where earth drifts into heaven, elephants and of course Chengeta Wildlife…which I am honoured to be a part of.

One only has to look at the shrinking natural world to know that something has gone sadly amiss. This group of children that I will be spending time with are a minute part of the future and as custodians of the planet they need to embrace kindness and respect towards this earth. I have been privileged to grow up in this timeless land and can close my eyes at any given time and smell the sweet breath of the warm wind as it scoops up the flaxen dust before freckling it over my sun browned arms. I can listen carefully and hear the veld gently breathing before the silence shredding cicadas fill the afternoon. The feeling of awe and heart pounding joy of being in the presence of elephants as they rumble past leaving you with a warm musky scent of Africa filling your nostrils is tucked away safely…and brought out for those quiet times. There is a joy and curiosity in the delicate sun rays peeping through the wet canopy of trees and I am hoping for the same results from these kids on Wednesday.

I want them to close their eyes and fall under the spell of these ancient beings…to surrender and to be encompassed by the invisible aura that surrounds these magnificent animals and to share and feel their presence even though we are 7 000 miles away. I want these children to feel the magic that these animals exude as they reach deep into the human soul in a mysterious and mystifying way.

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Elephants are the largest land mammals on earth and also the most emotionally human. The breeding herd of females are led by the matriarch, a wise mature female whose herd rely totally on her experience, memory and good leadership to survive. These breeding herds will live and form bonds that are forged over fifty years and once the matriarch dies, the leadership is normally passed onto one of her daughters who has learnt the necessary skills to take on this important position in the herd. Their intricate and complex family values rival our own and these enormous creatures carry their large heavy hearts on their sleeves. The noisy exuberance and trumpeting of baby elephants at a waterhole will mirror the behaviour of a group of young human children in a play ground as both species tussle and push…overjoyed at the freedom of space and sunshine around them. Compare a sulking 10 year old elephant to a sulking 10 year old human…there are such close similarities in the rate of growth and behaviour of the different personalities in both species. The joy of a new family member and the gut wrenching sorrow of death affects both elephants and humans in the same way. There is something special and endearing about elephant calves they exude the very essence of life.

We will discuss the evils of this rampant destruction sweeping through the sun kissed bush of the Continent devouring these magnificent animals and other wildlife with the hunger and ferocious appetite of a Tsunami wave. Plants and all living creatures are functioning parts of the ecosystem and nature should be our teacher….and our guide. I will see the frowns on their little faces as I tell them that 100 elephants are killed every day..frozen in time… forever. This amounts to one every 15 minutes…all slaughtered for ivory bracelets, trinkets, chops sticks and carvings. We will examine the ‘true cost of ivory trinkets’. We will have a brief look at how the poaching is breaking the continuity of information that is passed down through the generations…information that is vital to the well being stability of the herd..

I will explain that I spend so many hours of my spare time writing my blogs and poetry as I cannot sit idle…pretending that this tragedy is not happening. Apathy is the biggest danger facing these sentient giants and other endangered species.

Training rangers in Malawi

The class will have spent time before my arrival having a look at the Chengeta Wildlife website. I will discuss the fact that Rory is a dad of two who is passionate about the wildlife and dedicated to preserving the African biodiversity. Rory has the knowledge, skills and ability to train the ‘anti poaching units’ in the different African countries enabling these rangers to confront the horrific and urgent problems of poaching head on. He is a selfless man driven by an urgency to share his knowledge to protect….not only the wildlife but the rangers themselves whose lives are at risk from these violent and ruthless poaching syndicates whose eyes are steaming in their own malice.  I am on Chengeta Wildlife’s board of directors and a part of our mission is to raise funds to enable Rory Young to share his knowledge and skills throughout Africa. We are an important part of creating a future for these animals…ensuring that your children will not be asking in 20 years time why elephants, lions and rhinos are only found in zoos.

These children will then discuss any other environmental challenges needing attention..deforestation, plight of the polar bears in the Arctic and I will be sharing some of their work with you all in the near future. Wish me luck and please keep sharing our Chengeta Wildlife website. Wednesday will be good practice before our presentation at a Rotarian dinner in March.

WE ALL HAVE A VOICE…HELP TO RAISE THE AWARENESS. YOU TOO CAN SUPPORT CHENGETA WILDLIFE.

Tree Of Life

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‘Why do you call this strange looking tree the ‘Tree of Life?’ A pair of deep blue eyes twinkle as she stares up at me.

‘Sit.’ I pat the cushion beside me, ‘And listen carefully.’

‘The enormous baobab tree reaches out embracing the golden warmth of early morning Africa. The leaves shimmer as delicate sun rays bathe the bush in a mellow coppery glow. An echo like a mystery surrounds the magnificent tree…a tree that plays a special role in the African bush. With a trunk and branches that are twisted like powerful tendons of the veld, the mighty baobab boasts of being the most handsome and strongest of all trees. It has a network of roots that worm their way so deep into Mother Earth that they can feel the quiet, and the baobab can still quench it’s thirst when all around…the veld is parched and dying. With flowers that bloom at night and roots that survive deep within the darkness of the earth, the baobab has good reason to boast that it alone can bear the weight of the sky and clouds.’ Her little face is totally focused on mine.

‘Myths or legends would have us believe the arrogance of the baobab with its boasting ways angered the Gods…and they decided to teach it a lesson. With the strength of Hercules, the Gods yanked the startled baobabs, tearing their roots out from deep within the earth and replanted them upside down. Hence the strange look of the baobab today.’

With her mouth forming a perfect ‘0’ and her eyebrows arched liked question marks, ‘Did the Gods really do that to the trees?’

‘No…I don’t think so…but again,’ I raise my hands and wiggle my fingers at her, ‘I was not on earth thousands of years ago and they say it takes 800 years for this magnificent tree to reach maturity.’ I have lowered my voice to a whisper. ‘But, the earth and trees do play music to all those that listen.’ I lean forward.

‘What stories do they tell, Gog?’ A small frown furrows her brow.

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‘The baobab has ears and hears many secrets. It smiles down on many miracles of nature that happen daily and also frowns down on some of man’s menacing ways. These trees see and hear everything. They are privy to ‘the miracle of birth’.  (a clip of an elephant birth in the wild.) The baobab’s branches quiver with anticipation as the female elephant bears down, a grimace of pain crossing her expressive face. Agitated and excited, the female herd push and tussle forming an impenetrable wall of tusk and muscle around the new born as she lies vulnerable and gasping her first breath of precious life giving air. Temporal glands flow as the tight knit sisterhood encourage the baby with their powerful and versatile trunks onto her large padded feet. These noble animals are the essence of Africa…they are the soul of Africa, ancient and strong…just like the ‘Tree of Life’ who relaxes with a contented sigh.

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These same branches tremble as only hours later….an evil life force pulsates through the trees snapping branches in the sun fried bush. The smoke from a mopani fire teases the matriarch’s senses and a squadron of flies shred the uneasy quiet. She is suddenly full of fear and aware that mortality shadows her and the herd. Heartbeats on the run as the trees explode in the crossfire and the elephants lie torn and dying in the dust. (An old headline…but the attacks on these animals is constant.) The small calf, only two hours old…settles near her mother…unsure and bleeding.’

The baobab is bereft. It has been put on Mother Earth to sustain life. A single tree can hold up to 4 500 litres of water. The soft fibrous flesh and bark are fire resistant and can be used to weave rope and cloth. 80% of the trunk is water…a valuable source of liquid during the long scorching droughts. The leaves and fruit provide high levels of vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium, iron and potassium. The tree gives of itself to animals and humans alike.’

Her eyes are huge and full of tears. ‘So the Tree of Life is a good tree?’

‘Yes, and that is why it is called the tree of life. It teaches us all a valuable lesson but sadly there are many who don’t listen. We all want to grow good strong roots like the baobab, and give life…not take it.’

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‘Is that why you work with Chengeta Wildlife? She asks and my heart sings because she gets the gist of the story. I nod vigorously.

‘Trees are the lungs of this wonderful planet and without them, we cannot breathe. Being a part of Chengeta Wildlife helps me to breathe.  Chengeta Wildlife reminds me of the Tree of Life as it is a force for good and I am part of a solution to ensure that elephants, rhinos, lions and other endangered wildlife will continue to leave their marks on the sand. The only difference is that the Tree Of Life is a silent witness to the miracles of the bush…and the carnage…but we have a voice.’

She takes my hand, squeezing it tight. ‘ I want to be a part of the solution too.’ She smiles.

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You too…can be a part of the solution…take a look at our website.

CHENGETA WILDLIFE

Don’t be a silent witness

Africa’s Giants

‘We have booked ourselves a trip to South Africa.’ Her blue water colour eyes and cheeky smile stare at me across the office desk. I feel the little green monster clawing his way up my back and onto my shoulder. ‘I knew you would like to know.’ She is one of our youngest residents at the Assisted Living Complex where I work.

‘Oh my word.’ I can feel my heart thumping with excitement.. I cup my chin in my hands and meet her gaze. ‘You are so lucky. I can already feel my mind easing into bush mode.’ She chuckles and I can feel her excitement. ‘You will be paying a visit to Kruger?’ I ask.

‘Mmmm..I am not sure. We have been there before and I do feel that once you have been into the African bush…you have seen the bush.’ I can feel a look of amazement creeping across my face as she continues, ‘and once you have seen an elephant, what else is there to see about them? They are just animals.’ A furrow deepens between my eyebrows.

‘Have you got five minutes?’ I grin. ‘I will help you to find a little magic in the African bush.’ She nods and sits down with a funny little smile lifting the corner of her lips.

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‘Do yourselves a favour. Venture into the sun burnt haven of Kruger, feast your eyes and open your ears. Listen carefully as the land is full of song. ‘Natures Chimes’ I call them. The whistling wind, the mournful call of the dove, whispering leaves and the gentle hum of midges Keep listening and you will hear the high pitched bark of the zebras, the chatter of monkeys and the insane giggling of the hyenas. When you find a baobab tree, inspect it closely…in the safety of the camp. They are amazing and create their own ecosystem. They support the life of countless creatures, from the largest of mammals, the elephants to the thousands of tiny creatures that scamper in and out of its crevices. Birds nest in the grotesque branches; baboons dine on the fruit; bush babies and fruit bats drink the nectar and pollinate the flowers. While broody birds police the trees, don’t be put off by the call of the ‘go away bird’. Search the sky for a glimpse of the magnificent Martial Eagle as he cruises the empty air pockets and soak up the resonant calls of the glossy starlings drifting on the wind. You might be lucky enough to catch sight of a tawny lion slinking through the trees. Enjoy the sweet scent of steaming buffalo dung that invades your senses and admire the endless horizon stitched across the sky.On Nature’s grand stage, embrace the sticky breeze caressing your bare arms and throw your soul to the wilderness.  

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Powerful, dignified and awe inspiring comes to mind when I think about elephants. Hil, an elephant’s body might be vastly different from our own, but their behaviour is so human. Watch a family of elephants frolicking at the water pan. They are a noisy vibrant mass of exuberance anxious mums keep an eye on their youngsters…hauling them out of deep water with powerful and versatile trunks. Enjoy the show of humour as they play tricks on each other, tumbling around with joy while one little loner displays a show of jealousy and throws a tantrum…stomping out of the water and literally turns his back on the gleeful sounds. Close your eyes and feel rather than hear the subliminal rumble as they amble up the sand choked gully, stopping to strip the bark off a wizened baobab tree, their creamy tusks gleaming in the sunlight. They exude the essence of life and despite their bulky appearance, they move like dancers..light on their feet as their soles spread to take their immense weight. ‘The colliding of two giants’..where elephant and Continent meet. Hil, you think we are advanced in long range communications..we are.. but only by using equipment. Elephants communicate with infra-sound over a vast distance which is inaudible to human ears and they also appear to have a broad vocabulary with many distinct calls that have specific meanings. Watch them as they march to a drum roll of Africa pounding beneath their feet and feel the air vibrating with the excitement of love and trust that bonds them together..a powerful ingredient and one that us humans could learn from.’ She is looking at me with a far away expression and I think maybe I am boring her. I raise an eyebrow and her eyes focus back on me.

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‘Carry on..you have my attention.’ She laughs.

‘Fall under the spell of the African bush and celebrate the intricate web of life that teems under each fallen log, woolly tuft of grass and in the burbling streams. Allow yourself to be encompassed by the invisible aura that surrounds these majestic animals and reaches deep into the human soul in a mysterious and mystifying way. Elephants know and feel different emotions as they celebrate the birth of a baby and they mourn the death of loved ones. Elephants show all the best attributes of mankind with few of them displaying our darker sides. We call ourselves moral..but as humans, we are capable of immense cruelty. The elephants complex social structures are not ours to break. They forge these bonds over a life time. Sadly humans’ myopic greed for ivory is driving these tusk cursed animals to extinction.’ I pause and there is not a sound. ‘Hil, please go into Kruger. As the sun rays tip toe into early evening and crickets and cicadas shred the air…breath deeply sucking the fresh air into your lungs and allow these ambassadors of the wild to creep into your heart and to share their source of great wisdom and peace. With their large powerful trunks swinging freely..let your mind go with them and engage with the beauty that surrounds them. They are the gods of the African bush and I defy you to come back and tell me that …’once you have seen an elephant..what more is there to see.’ Go and enjoy Africa through my eyes.’

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Three weeks later she came bounding into my office with a wide grin and twinkling eyes. Before I could say anything she grabbed my hand, ‘how long have you got?’ her laugh tinkles. ‘It was awe inspiring. We saw so much game. The elephants…were …just amazing. I did not want to leave them. We watched the breeding herd and I could feel their emotion. We watched as they all appeared to stop as one…lifting their trunks into the air…still as can be, before moving on. The ranger said they were probably receiving a message. I loved their wrinkled coats and huge Africa shaped ears.’ She laughs. ‘Now you have me using your descriptions. Thank you for opening my eyes to what the African bush offers.’ She squeezed my hand. ‘We saw giraffe, lion, a variety of buck and rhino.’ Her voice falters. ‘The rhino are being poached at an alarming rate. It is tragic. I know you had told me but I had never felt connected before, but seeing them this on this trip and looking at them through fresh eyes I can now understand your fear. These beautiful animals belong in the African bush. It is their home. Before I left, you told me that you were on the board of directors of a group?’ I nod feeling close to tears.

‘Yes, I am on the board of directors for Chengeta Wildlife. We offer a comprehensive training to anti-poaching units through out Africa.’ I wipe away a tear that has crept out and down my cheek. She has made me feel so homesick.

‘I am sorry I did not buy any of your calendars.’ She smiled. ‘I wish I had. I did not want to leave Kruger you know.’ I nod, fully understanding that she had now left a huge chunk of her heart buried deep within the sun kissed African bush. We sit in comfortable silence and I hold onto that thought keeping it close to my heart and I feel her emptiness..we are now connected by an invisible bond.

‘Yes, Hil. I can fully understand how you feel. I am a child of Africa..it is in my very being. Each animal that is slaughtered for greed…I feel the pain. That is why I am determined that I will promote Chengeta Wildlife as I have huge belief in what we are going to achieve. We are a force for good and we are a part of these animals future.’ I hand her a web site address. I know she will have a look and see that we are fundraising. As she disappears, there is a feeling of peace in the office and I smile…one more convert.

 

Taking A Stand

 Take a stand for African Elephants and Rhinos

Within months of starting my Jennysjumbojargon journey, I realised that I did not want to be seen just as someone sharing ‘yellow pages of smudged memories’..I needed to be doing something more active. Words can be inadequate without any action. One of the highlights of the year for me was coming across Lisa Groenweg and Rory Young.  I had found and become totally involved in reading Rory Young’s blog.  ‘Anomie’s Child’ for me was like a soul open wide to the breeze and I read and re-read many different stories, embracing each of my favourites. There were times when I could feel the frustration gripping the words and sadness gnawing at the end of each sentence. Even from thousands of miles away, I could hear the passionate wind snaking through the grass while the throb of Africa pounded beneath my feet and the earthy, musty richness of fresh elephant dung lingered in my nostrils. It evoked warm memories of the vast wilderness of sun kissed grass, sturdy trees and elephants that had been tucked away for safe keeping and I realise that I am a passionate child of Africa..through and through and I will do what ever it takes to ensure that Chengeta Wildlife can continue to provide first class training to the anti-poaching units on the ground. Take a stand for African Elephants and Rhinos.

Lisa

Lisa is an amazing example of how one person can make a huge big difference. She was described as ‘A visionary with a heart of gold‘. A person who wants to change the lives of each and every individual she can.’ She started Chengeta Wildlife and 2014 has been the most incredible year. Like Lisa, we too can do our bit to help combat the horrors of poaching. Collectively, we can ensure the continuation of Chengeta Wildlife’s ability to adequately train and equip the necessary new generation of rangers required to assist the continuation of the circle of life in elephants, rhinos, lions and other wildlife within their natural habitats in Africa.

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‘In January of 2014, Chengeta Wildlife financed our first training session. 21 APU scouts from five different organisations in the Gache Gache area of Zimbabwe were trained by Rory. Many poachers were tracked, found, and arrested during the training session. Rory spent eighteen hours a day training and patrolling with the men. The strategy to stop poachers in the area was laid out in detail. With numerous other African countries expressing an interest, this initiative could potentially offer a significant boost to the continent’s success in reducing poaching.
‘A Field Manual for Anti-Poaching Activities is the most comprehensive, intelligent and pragmatic doctrine ever devised to bring the practice of poaching under control. Further, this doctrine utilises existing local resources and personnel with objective and low cost solutions.  50% of all proceeds from the sale of this book will go directly to fund anti-poaching unit training and to provide anti-poaching unit rangers in Africa with free copies.’
Across Africa the scourge that is poaching is removing natural resources at an unprecedented rate. The southern African nation of Malawi is no exception to the hugely negative impacts of poaching on biodiversity and the natural ecosystem processes that sustain both people and wildlife. Starting at the end of August the African Lion & Environmental Research Trust (ALERT) and Chengeta Wildlife, supported by the UK’s Coventry University, partnered with Malawi’s Department of National Parks & Wildlife (DNPW) provided 20 days of anti-poaching training to senior staff working in Malawi’s national parks and wildlife reserves. The training was held at DNPW’s training centre in Liwonde National Park, located south of Lake Malawi.
Malawi trainees and Rory Young during “in-operations” phase of our anti-poaching training session. Poachers were arrested and an entire ivory poaching syndicate was taken down.
This training session was funded by individuals from around the world who decided to take a stand against poachers and the criminal syndicates that are making billions from the illegal trade of wildlife.
Another busy day in the lecture room at Sidokoro, Parc National de Haut Niger, Guinea.The theory phase has been amazing. From Director General level down to AP team leaders, from all over Guinea, the work is being taken very seriously and the discussions have been animated and indicate a high level of motivation and the determination to make the most of the opportunity.
‘This year we have managed to train over 120 DG’s, Directors, Wardens and Anti Poaching team leaders in West, Central, East and Southern Africa, in advanced anti poaching and wildlife protection strategies, techniques and skills.The men trained this year alone are training another 750 that we are currently aware of. But how many more will benefit? What will be the knock on from all of this? Incredible. Thank you again from the bottom of my heart to all of those who have supported Chengeta Wildlife this year. You really have achieved the
impossible.’
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The biggest highlight of my year was being approached by Lisa Groenweg and asked to sit on the Board of Directors. I am passionate about what Chengeta Wildlife stands for. Rory Young is an amazing and selfless man who gives strength in these times when lengthening shadows of corruption and greed are devouring the wildlife at an alarming rate. Chengeta Wildlife’s 2015 calendar is full to brimming with engagements. As 2014 has now closed, we need to continue to weave a future for these rangers and animals from a tangled past and we need all the help we can. Please look at our link and help if you can. Sharing the link is fundamental in reaching our fundraising target.
Rory Young is a passionate and committed activist who has been fighting the evils of poaching all his life. He is a dedicated man who has decided to make it his life’s mission to ensure that the rangers in the anti poaching units have the best possible training. Rory has been in the field for well over 20 years now and has honed his skills in the bush as a pro-safari guide and a top class tracking consultant. 
While Rory Young gives of his time to train these men throughout Africa, I am asking you to look at our website. Help us to train and equip these men on the ground. Change will come…but we cannot afford to drift in the stream of the world…we need to act now. Africa’s elephants and rhinos have reached tipping point…and we need to all play an active role so that we can lead them out of the dark.
To my Chinese readership, I thank you and sincerely hope that I have managed to convince you that ‘Ivory looks better on elephants’ and ‘Rhino Horn belongs to Rhinos.’ (Infographic gift to Rory Young and Chengeta Wildlife).
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Wildlife Trafficking In Hwange

My first recollection of seeing a herd of elephants was on my 5th birthday. They were gigantic, wrinkled and grey. I was sitting cross legged on the wooden floor of a viewing platform overlooking a water hole in the heart of the Hwange Game Reserve. The sleeping water reflected the gilt edged clouds scudding happily across the painted sky and noisy doves policed the mopani woodlands, their melodious calls filling the late afternoon. Looking back, I had not appreciated the freedom of space, the warm breeze caressing my hair and the warmth of the wooden slats toasting my bum and bare brown legs. Small midges floated and whirred around my face… it was perfect, and much to my folks amusement, I announced ‘I saw them yesterday.’ And I continued to play with a doll with staring eyes and yellow hair. Well 50 years on, Hwange’s elephants are once again on my mind.

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Copy write – Artush

Hwange..A Spectacular Corner Of The Earth

 Fingers of sunshine edge over the horizon and breaking free from the thick early morning cloud, they probe deep within the shadows of the teak woodlands. In the warm friendly wash of early morning sunrise the distinct smell of moisture carries on the breeze: a seductive breeze full of promises of much needed rain for this unspoiled bush. Baboons with an excited air of expectation that only the pink wash of dawn brings, stretch, creasing out the night’s wrinkles before leaving the safety of the trees to begin a days foraging.  With the leader barking out instructions, the troop ease out of the shadows and into the sunlight, small babies clinging fearlessly to their mother’s undercarriage. The drum roll duet from a pair of Southern ground Horn bills echoes out as the males deep red creased wattle inflates like an old pair of bellows as he welcomes the early African morning. These gigantic birds are monogamous, pairing for up to 30 or 40 years, unless their mate dies.

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Photo credit DeLoyd Huenink

 

Scaly blue headed lizards bask on the exposed rock enjoying the warmth of the African sun on their bellies as well as their backs as one large rolling eye keeps focused on the wide sky looking for predators and the other eye strays onto a squadron of flies as they buzz low over a huge pile of sweet smelling buffalo dung. Hwange is a special corner of the world: untamed bush and spectacular wildlife. Loping giraffe rise up and stand tall against the thorn veld and mopani woodland while prison garbed zebra lower their heads, large teeth mowing and chewing, ears twitching and eyes watchful. Hwange is Zimbabwe’s largest national park and home to in excess of 100 mammal species and covers 14 540 sq km. During the crisp dry winters and droughts, the animals are entirely dependent on a network of artificial dams and pans fed by boreholes.  The park’s mix of habitats means an unusual biodiversity offering a sybaritic feast of eclectic bush rich in bird life and 108 different species of animals.

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Hwange is home for large herds of lumbering giants and a magic quivers in the air as the subliminal rumble can be felt rather than heard. Elephant family units will split, normally due to a shortage of food in the area. These family units remain united, congregating at watering holes and favourite feeding spots. Meeting up with members from the other unit is also cause for celebration. As vultures whirr high above this sun baked paradise, below the two herds of elephants begin to call out to each other from a quarter of a mile away. Getting closer, they pick up the pace with temporal glands streaming. Once they have spotted each other, they start to run: a large mass of bubbling exuberance and noisy splendor. Making contact through a swirl of golden dust, these mighty creatures embrace: ears flapping, tusks clicking, leaning into and rubbing each other: all the while urinating and defecating. Spinning in circles, they encompass the world with their joy and a cacophony of trumpeting screams and rumbles shred the air. Happiness and joyful is their reunion. These gregarious animals lower their trunks into the watering pan sucking up deep drafts of sweet life giving liquid and quenching their thirst before throwing warm Hwange sand over their backs. Small calves rough and tumble, their wrinkled trunks entwined and their shrill joyful calls filling the air. Their over sized creased coats are smeared with mud and their large  Africa shaped ears fan the sultry breeze cooling down their body temperatures. A small herd of buffalo have retreated to the other side of the pan, flaring their nostrils and snorting their defiance. The lords of the land, their large trunks with deep fissures swinging free as they rumble their way back into the African bush…the womb of the universe. The matriarchal herd have formed bonds that have been forged over a life time of 40 to 50 years and all young calves remain protected in the bosom of the family. Young males will branch out tasting  independent life at about 15 years of age and females will remain with the herd.

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Their relationship within the family rivals that of humans and they could teach the two legged creature a thing or two about family values and loyalty. Elephants show all the best attributes of mankind with few of them displaying our darker sides. They share this paradise with a multitude of different wildlife. While big cats prowl, the kings proud and vibrant mane halos his strong face. His yellow eyes are focused as he crouches low, camouflaged by the bush. These predators work together: a perfect phalanx  as the strangled cry of a young buffalo fills the air, and the excited cackle of the hyenas resonate as they close in, ready for battle with their age old enemies. These bush battles are as old as time and the winner takes all.

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Today, a much more dangerous force of predators are on the prowl. MAN.

‘According to an undercover wildlife investigator who provided information published in The Star newspaper, the elephant calves are being held at the ZWMA Mtshibi Animal Capture Unit’s holding centre, a few kilometres from Hwange Main Camp, where they’re being vetted for diseases prior to export.

Tourists reported seeing helicopter and ground teams from Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZPWMA) roping the babies after separating them from their mothers by firing shots above the heads of the herd. The calves would be below the age of five and not properly weaned, which reduces their chance of survival.’

This wildlife paradise erupts and tourists become aware of a live horror story taking place as they witness the blatant live capture of baby elephants as they are torn from the safety of the herd. Pulsating blood pushes through veins as these babies hearts pound in fear as their world is ripped apart. The matriarchal herds trumpet in rage as they are chased away by the sharp kkkk of warning shots being fired above their heads from a circling helicopter. A heavy curtain of dust hangs motionless as the net of capture closes in suffocating the small frightened animals. With temporal glands streaming, the captured babies urinate and defecate, their bowels opening in shock and horror, their small trunks lifting to smell the air…wondering where their mothers are.  The shutter of freedom comes banging down, turning these bush elephants into ‘captives’ who will, if they survive the trauma now endure a life time of servitude to man. Dazed and confused, they are pushed into a boma at the ZWMA Mtshibi Animal Capture Unit, where they are being vetted for disease prior to …’a life changing journey ahead of them.’

 As Dame Daphne Sheldrick said ‘Elephants are indeed more ancient, more complex, and in many ways more sophisticated than man. In terms of Nature they are truly more perfect because they remain within the ordered scheme of Nature and live as Nature intended. They are different to us, honed by natural selection over millennia so they should not be patronised, but rather respected and revered. And of all the animals, perhaps the most respected and revered should be the elephant, for not only is the largest land mammal on earth, but also the most emotionally human.”

 Cites have suggested that this is not illegal to export animals….however it is morally wrong. Zimbabwe, we have heard that one of these calves has died. They should never have been taken away from their mothers. This is a disgrace. Please take action and show your support for these sentient animals and the other wildlife involved in this crime. Please take a minute and sign the following petition.