WILDLIFE ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION SERVICES (WEPU)

Wildlife Environment Protection Unit (WEPU) Anti-Poaching in our GACHE GACHE WILDERNESS AREA (GGWA)

DONATIONS:-  PLEASE GO TO OUR DONATIONS PAGE TO MAKE A DONATION TO THIS GREAT CAUSE! THANK YOU!!

OR CONTACT: info@chapungusafaris.co.zw

LINE FISHERMEN: PLEASE POP INTO THE LODGE AND MAKE YOUR DONATION AS A THANK YOU TO THE WEPU WHO WORK FOR YOUR PLEASURE IN FISHING!

REPORT

COMMUNITY BASED PROJECT:  The battle goes on...

Some history: In October 2013 a new team was chosen by the local Community and Chiefs. The witch doctor came to the lodge and gave his blessing and stated openly that the Gache Gache River should not be fished using illegal nets and by illegal fishermen. It means a lot to all involved in the project to get his blessing and we hope that now the people will take the project seriously, with his endorsment. 

Due to the pressure that WEPU is exerting, there has not been that much activity in the Gache Gache Wilderness Area and River... also the weather has been windy and raining which makes it more difficult for the poachers to operate.

REPORT:-

Wire snares picked up: 6

Fish Poachers arrested: 15

Tiger Fish confiscated: 15kg

Fish Poachers sentenced: 3

Fish Poachers nets and boats confiscated: 7

Keep up the good work guys, well done... and keep the pressure on so that the fishing remains amazing in our Gache Gache River, and the game in our area feels safe and stays there! The lions are in the area due to the good work being done! we have the game for them to eat, similar to Pick n Pay is to a person... :)

UPDATE ON POLICE POST:-

We are going ahead albeit slowly right now, with the Police Post in the Gache Gache area which we hope will help deter more poachers. We are still in need of funding for this project. Please contact Pat on info@chapungusafaris.co.zw who has bank details for the Gache Gache Anti-poaching Trust Fund.

WISH LIST:

Boat motors are needed to help us replace over-used equipment! urgent please!! 

Grocery hampers for the team also requested... they get tired of eating fish. :)

Handcuffs, or anything else you think we could utilize i.e. cable ties.

UNIFORMS: sponsor the team and have YOUR LOGO printed on their worksuits/overalls... Contact Pat 0772264159

 

FISHING RULES & REGULATIONS

Please stick to the latest National Parks Rules & Regulations re how many fish can be caught, landed, etc. We practice CATCH & RELEASE with all TIGER fish unless foul hooked. The correct thing to do re BREAM fish is take only what you will eat that day. Release the rest. Do not stock up to take home 50kg of fish to sell or give to the rest of your family and staff back home PLEASE!! IF you do this, and every other fisherman does this, there will be NO fish for your children's children to catch... and they wont be able to experience Kariba as you have been privileged to do.

DONT SPOIL IT FOR OTHERS & RESPECT THE FISH & WILDLIFE.

PLENTY CROCS IN THE RIVER NOW DUE TO OUR ANTI-POACHING EFFORTS SO PLEASE BE CAUTIOUS, DON'T STAND NEAR THE EDGE OR HANG LEGS OVER BOATS ETC. No keep nets either, use cooler boxes for your fish!

KARIBA CRAYFISH: YABBIES – an interesting observation...

We don't find any yabbies in our river due to the very high fish population... Tiger fish at the Tiger tournament have been opened up and little yabbies found inside them. SO the higher the fish population, the less yabbies. WELL DONE to our team for keeping up their patrols and making sure that Poachers know that the Gache is a ZERO TOLERANCE ZONE FOR POACHERS.

Thank you to all those of you line fishermen and conservationists who used to pop in and make a donation towards the cause, it is hugely appreciated. Due to low water levels now, we don't see you all that often any more... We desperately need that $20 here and there so please contact Pat to get our bank details and make a small deposit when you can afford to. Every bit helps us! We are struggling to continue right now.

Those of you not sure of what happens, we simply request that if you are going to fish in the Gache, that you come in and make a donation that goes to support of our WEPU team which is a Community Based Project that Chapungu Safaris helps to support by fundraising. The team consists of 6-8 people who need food and living allowances. Fuel is a great expense as is maintenance of our boats and vehicles that patrol the river and wildlife area. Every cent counts...

RESPECT...

Please respect our Residents at the lodge and don't race your boats past the chalets at full speed! & please do not sit in front of the lodge or chalets and fish either... thank you!  In fact now you cant race past due to low lake levels, but you know what we mean... :)

 

GOOD FISHING! KEEP THE LAKE CLEAN & RESPECT FISH & WILDLIFE !

 

A HUGE THANK YOU goes to all our donors who, no matter how large or small the donation, are all helping to contribute towards our Gache Gache Wildlife Environment Protection Unit.  WEPU are doing a great job keeping the poachers at bay and protecting both wildlife and fish in the Gache Gache Wilderness Area (GGWA). The team, some of whom are volunteers fron the local community,  is supported by Chapungu Safaris who fund raise for the project and welfare of the team. It is now seriously improving the fishing and game viewing for you and future generations.

WEPU relies solely on donations and the CHALLENGE is still out there... to all Local and Regional Corporates:-                                                                       TREK 1 Petroleum, and Red Dane Farming, our monthly donors, donate between $200 up to $1000 MONTHLY! Ian Miller's club sponsors one of the Team's salary monthly so thanks to the FFF Club, much appreciated. We need more Team member's salary sponsors please! Various donors have so far given cash and various goods to WEPU, such as uniforms, meat etc.  which is really helping us sustain the operation.  If any business out there can help by donating something related to their own business such as an offer for uniforms, food, fuel, radios, boats! motors, life jackets for the anti-poaching side as well as hay bales, molasses, salt, transport etc. for feeding the animals... you would be helping this conservation project and the team tremendously.  Remember these guys are Volunteers from the local Community... they are doing their bit for Conservation and are putting their lives at risk daily for our children’s future! One of our scouts had his arm broken by a poacher’s oar!  By helping, you would be commending the team for their great efforts and achievements. Chapungu Safaris has put in a lot of time, energy, and money into this project and we would hate to see it all fade away due to lack of funding.

REMEMBER, IT IS AN ONGOING PROJECT & YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT IS NEEDED! Fuel is a major expense as it is used in boats and vehicle patrols as well as carting the poachers and their confiscated boats to the Police Station in Kariba together with our team leader, Tapson, who then has to appear in court later again to testify, making it a 160 km roundtrip each time they travel... Uniforms are needed all the time as they do get worn out very quickly in the bush, so whether in cash or kind it all helps hugely towards the above and the team’s food and salaries... and morale!

... And the animals are always hungry and to keep them in our area where they are protected to a degree it takes a lot of feeding.

 

 THIS YOUNG ELEPHANT HAD ITS TRUNK CHOPPED OFF IN A SNARE...

FEEDING PROGRAMMES

We feed the wildlife in our area with hay bales during the dry months only with salt licks & molasses. This keeps many animals in the area including Elephant, Buffalo, Eland, Warthog, Water buck, Bushbuck, Impala etc. making our game drives from the lodge increasingly more interesting for our residents. The animals have tamed down and are not frightened off by the game-viewing vehicle, so taking photos is that much easier. The wildlife needs to continue to be protected and supported at all costs for future generations to also benefit.

HISTORY:  The Community Anti-Poaching team started patrolling in October 2010 and on their first night they caught 19 poachers, confiscated seven boats and illegal nylon nets which stretch for kilometres in the waters. CURRENTLY, the Gache Gache Anti Poaching Unit has successfully caught and arrested over 600 oachers, impounded over 265 illegal boats and many many km of the nylon nets are burnt so that they cannot be used again. A number of successful convictions have resulted in jail terms, fines and severe warnings. Word is now out within the local community area...


TAPSON CHIBAYAMAGORA the Team Leader says: Continuous funding is desperately needed in order to really get on top of these ever growing problems. We are constantly arresting fish and wildlife poachers in the Gache Gache Wilderness Area, and we are winning albeit at a slow pace. Fuel is one of the greatest needs as mentioned already, the boats and vehicles use a large quantity on their patrols as well as transporting the poachers to jail and then attending court at a later date. Further funding, preferably on a monthly stop order basis, would go a long way towards the daily activities of the EPS Team.
 
GACHE GIVES BACK!
Annually, Gache Gache Lodge has supported several fundraising events such as the SPCA Fundraiser every year, where we donate a 3 night stay for two adults as part of the 1st prize. 


GACHE GACHE IS A ZERO TOLERANCE ZONE FOR POACHERS AND ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES

Positive results in the GGWA:- Wildlife has come back into the area and the levels of fish have noticeably risen and the quality of rod & line fishing is as good as it was 10 years ago... 
Legal community fishermen in legal fishing zones outside of the wilderness area are experiencing improved catches. The local community have since asked the anti poaching unit if they would be able to extend their activities right down the river to protect a larger area. To do this we need boats, motors and more support from YOU all!!

ENDORSMENT

K.I.T.F.T. (Kariba International Tiger Fishing Tournament) have fully endorsed the GGWA & encourage others to support this public private community partnership approach to conservation & communities. TOGETHER WE CAN SAVE A UNIQUE WILDERNESS AREA OF ZIMBABWE. PLEASE SUPPORT US!

COMMENT

‘’I am encouraged by the dedication & passion of this community anti-poaching team & amazed at how fast wildlife & fish have come back into this area over such a short time. Please, I encourage you all to support the protection of the GGWA because if we cant afford to carry on, OVERNIGHT it will go back to being a disaster area... thats how bad the poaching is if left to fester...’’ - Ray Townsend Director Chapungu Safaris t/a Gache Gache Lodge.

Please contact Pat today on info@chapungusafaris.co.zw for bank details or other ways in which you can help towards this good cause.