Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

***The views expressed in the articles published on this website DO NOT necessarily express the views of the Commercial Farmers' Union.***

ZCTF Report – Aug 2012

ZCTF Report – Aug 2012


Only after the last tree has been cut down.
Only after the last river has been poisoned.
Only after the last fish has been caught.
Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.
Cree Indian Prophecy
15th August 2012
We have learned, from a special bulletin issued by the Zambezi Society, that Habbard Investments (Pvt) Ltd proposes to undertake mineral exploration along the Rukomechi and Chewore Rivers in Mana Pools, Sapi and Chewore Game Reserves in the Zambezi Valley. Prospecting licences have been granted to GeoAssociates, a locally owned company to undertake exploration activities for Heavy Mineral Sand Deposits. They have external partners who have insisted that an Environmental Impact Assessment be done.
The proposed mine will be in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, a site that includes Mana Pools National Park, Sapi and Chewore Safari Areas. Its status as a World Heritage Site means that it is a property of Outstanding Universal Value because of its cultural and/or natural significance which is so exceptional as to transcend national boundaries and to be of common importance to present and future generations of all humanity. As such, the permanent protection of this heritage is of the highest importance, not only to Zimbabweans but to the international community as a whole.
The Zambezi Society intends to engage other organisations who are objecting to the mining development to form a group of even bigger impact. Please could any organisations who wish to join forces with them email them at [email protected].
281 rhinos have been killed by poachers in South Africa so far this year. The worst hit has been the Kruger National Park where 164 have been killed. 176 people have been arrested since January in connection with the rhino poaching.
A female war vet named Shuvai Mahofa has taken over Savuli Ranch in Save Valley Conservancy. She claims to have a legal lease on the property issued by National Parks, who apparently are not entitled to issue leases on conservancy properties. However, the High Court of Zimbabwe has ruled that the legal owners and operators of Savuli, Forever African Safaris, should continue operations on Savuli and should not be interfered with.
In contempt of the High Court decision, Mahofa has evicted Forever African Safaris and their employees, trashed their belongings and thrown their furniture out on the road. In the meantime, Mr Ken Drummond has moved onto the property and is operating under the name of Impala Safaris. They are operating on a quota issued to Mahofa which has 5 lion on it, which is more than the entire Save Valley Conservancy and Savuli only forms a very small part of this.
Drummond is now posting pictures of the Savuli Camp and of several impressive trophies on the website of Impala Safaris, which is owned and run by Arnold Palmer. The website names several hunters who have taken impressive trophies on the property. It is suspected that some of the hunters who have hunted on Savuli are US citizens and they are quite likely unaware that their hunts have been illegal. We would like to inform any prospective clients that Arnold Palmer, Ken Drummond, Tikki Drummond and Impala Safaris are acting completely illegally. This is the opinion of the High Court of Zimbabwe set down in their recent judgement. Sadly, their judgement has been completely ignored and the wholesale slaughter of animals on Savuli continues. The National Parks contingent on Savuli have shot sable, nyala, buffalo and kudu for rations and Mahofa’s brother has been seen regularly in Chiredzi selling game meat in plain sight of police who take no action.
There has been constant talk of proposed mining activities to take place in the photographic tourism/wildlife area bordering the Hwange National Park where the Presidential Elephants roam. Some areas have already been pegged for coal and diamond mines. President Mugabe re-pledged to protect these elephants in May 2011. If this mining is allowed to go ahead, the area will be defaced by huge craters, increased traffic, pollution and additional people. The wildlife cannot survive this sort of human impact and greed.

Notugre Wild Dog Poisoning

(Notugre is a conservation area near the Tuli Block) Recent illegal activities inside Notugre have resulted in the termination of the last remaining wild dogs. With the death of two wild dogs at Talana Farm still fresh in our minds (20th May 2012), the last remaining pack members, including the alpha female, has been poisoned by local Motswana men on the 6th of July 2012.


During the end of June 2012 the alpha female of the pack started showing signs of pregnancy. The pack then settled in the northern section of Luenza property in what looked like a possible denning area. Around the 4th & 5th of July the female gave birth. Number and sex of pups were unknown. Tragically on the 6th of July two men from a nearby cattle post walked into the den site and laced carcasses with highly poisonous Temic in a deliberate attempt to kill these carnivores. After investigation of the site, two wild dogs, a large male leopard, African wild cat




and an African Hawk Eagle was found dead within a 70m radius of the den. An impala – and a goat carcass was found laced with Temic. The goat carcass wasfound high up in a Leadwood tree, cached by a leopard. The spoor of the cat was quickly traced and the body of the leopard found not 30m away. The tracks of two men were easily traced back to a nearby cattle post and apprehended. Reports indicate that these men apparently lost two goats to predators on the 5th of July2012, possibly by the wild dog pack, but it could also be from spotted hyaenas. The men then returned back to their cattle post to fetch Temic-poison, which theyapparently bought from someone at Talana Farm. The men then went back to the two goat carcasses and carried it closer to the den site, which they admitted knowing was there. They were also after a large male leopard, which they knew were walking along a specific drainage line, close to the den. They then laced both carcasses with Temic but then found the remains of an impala carcass close to the den, which they

then also laced. What happened next is what we could figure out from tracks and spoor. The male leopard walked along the drainage line and found one of the goat carcasses. It then dragged it to the nearest tree and cached it up there. While the leopard was feeding on this poisoned carcass, the wild dogs then returned to their den, having been scared off by these poachers, and presumable fed on the last remaining poisoned scraps of the impala carcass. Needless to say, every animal that fed on these carcasses died within 30m of each. These include the African Hawk Eagle and African wild cat. These are only the animals we could find and it isbelieved that there could be more dead predators in the surrounding area.


Regarding the pups, I personally crawled into the den with a torch to search for any pups, but I found none. The second poisoned goat carcass was apparently burned by these culprits, on hearing the commotion of vehicles from their crime scene. What will happen to these men? Will the penalties for these poachers be severe enough, or will they just get a slap-on-the-wrist from the authorities? They are both between the ages of 24 to 26 and live with their parents at this cattle post. It’s located just north of the Lentswe Le Moriti four ways crossing.


What makes matters ever worse is that in 2007, Rex Masupe from Mashatu Anti-poaching, found a dead cheetah at this cattle post. Killed by this same family. You have to wonder, how long have these people been poisoning and killing our carnivores? This right under our noses. In 2008 a single lioness was found dead along the main road past this cattle post. Cause of death was poisoning. Furthermore, in 2010, between 4 to 5 spotted hyaenas and one leopard carcass was found scattered along the main road past this same cattle post – all carcasses were poisoned. Coincidence, I think not…


This senseless act of hatred towards carnivores is a major setback and waste of countless hours of research, financial support, political backup and commercial publicity and marketing. If people are going to live inside Notugre with livestock, our predators are in serious peril. They will not survive. If not for the use of GPScollars, we would have never known the fate of these animals. How many more do we not even know about? It was Armageddon for the wild dogs. What’s next, our lions? Cheetah?


Andrei Snyman

Johnny Rodrigues
Chairman for Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force
Landline: 263 4 336710
Mobile: 263 712 603 213
Email: [email protected]

The Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force relies soley on public donations. Your donation can help to preserve the wildlife in Zimbabwe. If you would like to assist, please contact us.

Survival in the wild

Survival in the wild  Sunday Mail 13/10/2019   Phineas Chauke IT is not called wildlife for nothing. Life in the wild is not only survival

Read More »

ZimParks, IFAW in conservation deal

ZimParks, IFAW in conservation deal Herald 3/10/2019   Elita Chikwati and Ellen Chasokela Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) on Monday signed a Memorandum

Read More »

New Posts: