Africa Albida Doubles Funding for Vic Falls Anti Poaching Unit
Africa Albida Tourism has doubled its funding to the Victoria Falls Anti Poaching Unit (VFAPU).
Chief executive of Africa Albida Tourism, Ross Kennedy says the organisation is now supporting six scouts to the value of R126 000 per year in acknowledgment of the significant impact the unit has had on the area.
"The unit's work is outstanding and everyone living in the area would suffer should the unit stop operations. It is a worthwhile cause that we must continue to support and we encourage others to do the same," said Kennedy.
The unit has been in operation since 1999 in partnership with hospitality establishments, relevant authorities and the community of Victoria falls. Recently the Victoria Falls Wildlife Protection Trust was formed to oversee the running and operations of the unit.
The unit has proved its worth and presence by saving over 120 mammals from painful and slow death caused through injuries from wire snares, apprehending hundreds of poachers and recovering over 20 000 snares from the bush surrounding Victoria falls.
Between January and March alone the unit has located 51 snares, apprehended 51 wood poachers, 18 curio vebdors - three in the national park in possession of sable and buffalo horns. It has also apprehended 14 illegal miners, two illegal entries in the Zambezi national park and one drug dealer. Furthermore, the unit has darted a warthog male with a wire snare around its snout and one elephant bull with a three-strand wire on the rear right leg. Both animals are once again mobile and healthy.
In total, 17 scouts work with the unit, protecting wildlife under dangerous circumstances, patrolling the national park 24/7.
Spokesperson and founder of the unit, Charles Brightman, says these efforts are an illustration of what can be achieved by everyone working together for the benefit of not just the unit, but also Zimbabwe's wildlife being preserved for future generations and foreign visitors.
Africa Albida Tourism has been managing the unit along with their several award-winning tourist establishments and attractions in the area. Its flagship establishment, Victoria falls safari lodge, is Zimbabwe's best safari lodge for the 15th year running and is the most coveted among non-tented safari lodges in the country. The Hide Safari Lodge at Hwange National Park is certified as being the top tented safari camp in Zimbabwe for the 12th consecutive year. These two prime tourist attractions benefit from the efforts of the anti-poaching units in their areas.
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