Just a few weeks ago, a combined group of rangers coming from the Virunga National Park in DRC, as well as Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, carried out a combined patrol in the middle of the Virunga Massif in a new attempt of making the region secure for the significantly decreasing in numbers – mountain gorillas as well as the additional wildlife. As stated by the Leading Park Warden for the Volcanoes National Park – Prosper Uwingeli, this patrol was carried out by Twenty four members among them rangers from the two parks as well as community members coming from regions neighboring these two parks.
The International Gorilla Conservation Programme (IGCP) which is a coalition of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) as well as the Fauna and Flora International (FFI) – provided provisions to these rangers as well as the community members that carried out this patrol.
This combined patrol, the very first of several in a new attempt to suppress the amount of traps within this region of the Massif, sprang out of a conference conducted by the Greater Virunga Trans-boundary Collaboration in the month of February this very year, between the Virunga National Park and the Volcanoes National Park. This meeting / conference was conducted in Rumangabo within the DRC, and both national parks were well represented by Uwingeli from Volcanoes National Park, and Dr. Emmanuel de Merode from Virunga National Park. IGCP was also well-represented by Dr. Augustine Basabose, the then IGCP species conservation coordinator.
Dr Augustine commented that The agreed upon solid commitment amongst the two national parks to resume efforts in jointly patrolling the mountain gorilla home will curb poachers’ efforts to openly work with the Virunga Massif, in which over the latest months a minimum of 2 youthful mountain gorillas have actually been captured in traps. One luckily survived, however, unfortunately the other one did not. He added that IGCP is devoted to continuing to aid these trans- border efforts.