This report from the lion rangers in the Puros Conservancy raises hopes for the desert lions in the Puros area. Although the “Terrace Male” is not tolerated close to the village, which is more than understandable, the local community is not resorting to killing/poisoning (like it happened not long time ago), but rather makes an effort to chase him away. Let’s give kudos to the Puros community!
This lion ranger report came shortly before the news of three lions poisoned in the Anabeb Conservancy. The lion ranger programme there is still in its infancy.
Today, the lion rangers reported, that the “Terrace Male” is again close to Puros… It is a fragile truce, and one individual could ruin the efforts of many. But everybody will keep on working hard to ensure a future for Namibia’s desert lions.
Does Dr. Stander ever sleep? We met him after sunset, somewhere in the middle of the Palmwag Concession. We had driven all day, and so had he. But while we set up camp and prepared our dinner, Dr. Stander made for the next hill, to listen for lions via the radio system. He came to our camp fire for a chat and when we went to bed, he went back to the hill to continue listening for lions. Whereas we bothered about breakfast the next morning and had to break up camp, Dr. Stander drove off in search of the lions.
Researching desert lions in the Namib obviously is a dedication, not a job.
Desert Elephant Conservation promotes the long-term conservation of Namibia’s desert elephant population through research, monitoring, and the sharing of knowledge. Laura Brown and Rob Ramey have been studying the elephant populations of the Uniab, Hoarusib and Hoanib since 2005.
TOSCO contributed 9000 NAD for petrol to their field work end of 2013. Afterwards, they gave an interview to TOSCO:
Only one dead cow in 2013! Since the start of the lion officer programme end of 2012 only one farmer lost one cow to lions in the Puros conservancy.
All over Africa, lions are killed by local people whose livelihood is threatened by lions. Whereas we all have an interest in the lions and the wild places they live in, the local people bear the costs, e. g. when lions eat their cattle and goats or elephants raid their crops. And they retaliate by killing lions.
We cordially invite you to a TOSCO talk on responsible marine wildlife tourism.
Watching dolphins, whales, seals and other ocean wildlife is popular with tourists and locals in Namibia. But what do we know about how tourism is affecting them? And what should be done to ensure this activity is as enjoyable in the future as it is now? To learn more about this, we have asked Ruth Leeney from Benguela Research & Training in Walvis Bay to give a talk for TOSCO in Windhoek:
With regards to trophy hunting we try to be realistic, whether we like it or not. As things are in our times, money makes the world go round. But there is not much money to be made from protecting nature. This often means for conservation that “if it pays it stays”, i. e. if something in nature can create economic returns there is a chance for its survival. Hunters often pay a lot of money, thus incorporating the animals they hunt into the economic cycle. If this is ethical and where that money goes to, is a different story.
Many organisations in Namibia, including TOSCO, try to limit the damage caused by reckless off-road driving. With our limited resources we try to make visitors aware of the devastation that can be created by this. And then, Stratstone Mercedes (probably other companies as well) films an ad and flattens it all. This ad is seen by thousands of people…! The message this ad sends out is that you can do anything you want when driving off-road, no matter what you destroy and what you leave for others, just have fun. But: It takes ages for the landscape to heal from such attacks, not to speak of all the small beings that get run over by such reckless driving. If everybody started acting like that… Off-road driving can also be enjoyed responsibly, e. g. by staying on existing tracks, being sensible to the environment and only drive where it is allowed and does not create damage.
If you disagree with the message of this ad you can write to Mercedes Stratstone: firstname.lastname@example.org, twitter @StratstoneMerc and Daimler (their mother company) email@example.com or leave a comment on YouTube below the ad.
You might still not meet anybody when exploring Namibia’s wild places, but you might see the signs that somebody has been there before you. Off-road tracks, old fire places or rubbish are visible signs of the increasing number of people traveling for example in the Kaokoveld. To keep our pristine places pristine, information and awareness are the keys. This is why TOSCO Trust has distributed 7500 information brochures to car rental companies where they are available to tourists for free. These brochures compile the most essential “best practices” for visitors (and locals), especially when camping and traveling to remote places on their own: How to stay safe, protect the environment & wildlife and be a welcome visitor even in sensitive areas – leaving them unspoilt and wild as we love them. Why not leave the rubbish at the campsite in Damaraland – a dustbin is provided there after all? Better not, because in remote locations there is no possibility to properly dispose of waste – it will merely be buried somewhere or burnt! So, if possible take it back with you. What is a safe distance desert elephants can be approached without molesting them? The brochures answer such essential questions in 5 languages: English, Dutch, French, German and Italian. These “best practices” are elemental guidelines for keeping our landscape pristine and unspoilt, our wildlife relaxed and alive and the visited people friendly and welcoming. Thanks for your support! Do you love Namibia’s wild places and want to contribute to protecting them? Visit our website for more https://tosco.org/