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inyathi

British Army Gurkha 'super-tracker' hunting poachers in Gabon to save last remaining elephants

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I was very pleased to read the following story in the Daily Telegraph this morning, it would appear from looking up this story on their website that they are moving towards being a subscription only site so you may not be able to read the full story. However I have found the same story in the Sun so I will provide a link to that as well.

 

British Army Gurkha 'super-tracker' hunting poachers in Gabon to save last remaining elephants

 

Quote

 

Picking through dense jungle, rarely snapping a twig or bending a blade of grass, the British Army’s “super tracker” silently moves inches closer to a poachers camp, knowing a single sound could draw the attention of ruthless killers armed with AK47s and grenade launchers.

 

Corporal Gyanendra Rai, 31, of First Battalion The Royal Gurkha Rifles was sent by the British Army to answer an SOS from the Gabon government.

 

The central African country is desperate to stop poachers slaughtering their rare forest elephants, 36,000 of which were killed in the past ten years. 

 

 

The Gurkhas are extremely well trained in the art of jungle warfare mainly in Brunei but I presume also in Belize and when it comes to tracking Corporal Rai is clearly the best of the best, the British Army has actually been involved in ranger training in Gabon since 2015, I hope that the skills that Corporal Rai can pass on will really start to turn the tide. Forest elephants have been taking a real hammering in recent years and evidence shows that they reproduce very slowly and that the effect of poaching is even worse than it is for their savannah cousins and could cause their extinction and without intervention certainly will cause the extinction of some populations. Like the lowland gorillas that share these forests the forest elephant is a vital component of the ecology of the rainforests of Gabon and the wider Congo Basin distributing the seeds of many different tree species. Their loss would have a huge impact on the fauna and flora of this region. Besides the ecological impact, if Gabon is ever to seriously get its act together and develop a proper wildlife tourist industry then it needs to ensure that it's elephants are safe so that tourist will be able to visit and see them as I did. 

 

It is the sad reality of poaching in Africa that rangers need to have not only excellent tracking skills but also proper combat training to deal with the people that they are up against and I am extremely glad that the British Army is helping to provide the necessary training, in particular some of our Gurkha soldiers.

 

ONE-MAN TUSKFORCE ‘Super tracker’ soldier deployed to Africa on a mission to save elephants from cold-blooded poachers

 

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a promising development for a very difficult situation

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Thanks for sharing this heartening news article @inyathi.   

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