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APRIL 2022
NEWSLETTER
There is a twinge of winter in the air, and our official rainy season is over. We had about 540mm of rain in Victoria Falls for the season, which is about average., but with a poor spread (most rain fell in January), and also it is erratic in its spread, with some pans full and nearby ones only half full. The Zambezi River will have a moderate flood, which does not bode well for Kariba as it is already low.
The Zambezi Off-Road Club held its 10th Annual Enduro Competition at the end of April, on their track outside of Victoria Falls  It was well supported with over 96 participants, including four previous Dakar riders, and with riders coming from Zambia and Botswana, as well as from all over Zimbabwe. It was a great day, well organised and with a very good turn out of the local community.
Bhejane Trust is one of the beneficiaries of the funds raised, and assisted by running a marshalling point.
Well done to Ian Gloss and his team for a truly great event!
Bhejane Trust  marshalling at Boulder Pass - some of the action!!
When you take the wrong line!!

ZAMBEZI NATIONAL PARK

The  elephant along the Zambezi are not like those in Hwange which migrate to the back area of Botswana between Kazuma and Maun during the rains, only coming back as this area dries up - the Zambezi elephant are permanent residents and are putting our pumped pans under pressure straight away.
The good news is that Ian Thomson donated a replacement pump for the one stolen from Thomsons Pan, and this is now installed and the pan is recovering.
We also have donated replacement panels for No 3 - some panels here were damaged in an attempted theft over a year ago, and are not working properly after the rains. The new panels will be installed in early May. Thanks to Gary Bowes for the panels.
More good news - we have a new pump donated for No 1A borehole, which will supplement the existing No 1 pump and hopefully get the pan full as the season progresses.Thanks to Morne and Michelle Muller of S.O.S SA.
So we will be in good shape going forward into the season as far as game water goes. Time to look at the roads now the rains are finished! 
KAZUMA PAN NATIONAL PARK
Kazuma is drying out fast and access is now possible. We are fixing the Parks tractor and tow grader so as to start grading the roads, plus we have supplied the required diesel
We have visited all the pumped pans and checked the systems, plus have cleaned underneath the panels for fire protection, repaired and painted where required etc. Generally the pans are looking good, with good water and all pumps are working.
 
THE PANS OF KAZUMA
Eland Pan (top), with Roan Pan (bottom left) and Insiza Pan (bottom right)
Kazuma Corner Pan - with our 6 resident hippo!
ROBINS
The Robins area was drying out fast, but there was a storm in the middle of April which again rendered some of the roads impassable. However, we have managed to clean and service most of our pumps, with only a couple still inaccessible until the roads dry out again.. We have been cleaning and opening up the roads in the back areas of the Park- off the tourist routes but important for Park management. We also tidied up Deteema.picnic/camp site
Salt Pans - full!!
Mbhejane Pan - where we intend to drill and equip a borehole here next month
THE LIONS OF ROBINS
SINAMATELLA
Thanks to funding from Simon and Portia Rowlands, we have built new staff quarters at Shumba, plus put in water, modified a kitchen and cleaned up the area. We have also done some work in the picnic /camp site including fixing all the plumbing, fixing the ceiling in the kitchen, putting on a new chromadek roof on the kitchen, cleaning the showers and toilets and tidying up the whole site. All that is needed now is for the finishing touches.
The new building at Shumba - some how our dark green paint came out differently!! (an issue we are taking up with the supplier!!)
 
Report from Stephen Long
   Rainfall and game water
    The 2022 rainy season has come to an end. It was a season that had its ups (January), its downs (February) but by the end it was pretty much average with the bonus that good rain in March has left us with full water points. Here is the story of the season in graph form.
And some season–end waterpoint views……
                                            Lukosi Pan  (top)     
Inyantue dam (bottom left)                          Mandavu dam ( bottom right)
   We did quite a lot of game water work in April. Tshontanda 2, Lukosi, Mafa’s and Mbala Valley all needed new outlets to be built or the old outlet to be repaired, we greased the bearings and built a retaining wall around the elephant-proof trench at Sinamatella wind pump, rewired and restarted Mashambo, painted the panel frames at Inyantue and Shumba and visited and tidied every one of our twenty-two pumps. At month end we had three pumps out of order but the spares have arrived for one of those and will be fitted in May.
Back in July last year we removed a snare from our female giraffe number 54. Here she is just after reversal of the dart drug, looking a bit groggy but back on her feet (left)  A couple of days after that we saw her again but then she vanished and we didn’t relocate her until the beginning of April this year when she was with a group of giraffe along the Sinamatella river. We couldn’t get close to her but she looked to have recovered completely and we were very happy to see also that she seems to be quite heavily pregnant. Well done to the Parks vet for this success story. 
  April was a very good month for giraffe sightings – we recorded fifty-five different individuals in the course of the month, including a few new youngsters.
   And of course there were all the usual, easily overlooked, small things to enjoy…….         
Shumba is looking very nice at the moment – the pan is full, and the hide, picnic site and attendant’s house have all had work done on them (though of course there is always more to do). To our surprise there were quite a few campers using the picnic site through the month. One of the rangers who was deployed at Shumba for a planned one-night stay ended up spending ten days there as new bookings kept coming in.
   There was also some good progress at Mandavu picnic site. IFAW paid for a borehole to be drilled and for Forster Irrigation to install a pump and a new 10000 litre tank. For years the water supply at Mandavu has come via a diesel-powered pump straight from the dam with its big population of hippo, crocs and fish and its hundreds of visiting buffalo and elephant and the water has been…..let’s call it ‘unpleasant.’ On the very day that Forsters finished work, the diesel pump broke down. We went and had a look and soon realised that it would not only be easier but also much cleaner and cheaper if we connected up the new borehole to the whole picnic site rather than fix the diesel. It took us the best part of a day but at the end of it all the Mandavu taps were running with clean, drinkable water for the first time ever.
   Sue and I spent a couple of days at Robins to help the wildlife officer there get started on giraffe monitoring. I’m not sure how well that went – I had a presentation all ready on a flash drive but minutes after we started, the electricity supply failed and left us having to do everything from memory. Oh well, that gives us an excuse to go back some time soon. 
   Finally, we had a new, upgraded wifi system installed in April. It is quicker than the old system and gives us more Gb per month but it hasn’t solved my email problem so I am still not receiving all the mail sent to me. If you have written to me and I haven’t replied it probably isn’t because I’m forgetful or rude (well not all the time anyway). Please try again
RHINO MONITORING & PROTECTION UNIT

Report By Nick Long
Nick was on well deserved leave this month so we have no report.
POACHING
A busy month again for Parks Investigations!
A Sinamatella Parks ranger was arrested in Harare along with a serving policeman and a retired policeman, trying to sell 30kg of ivory. The ranger claimed to have picked up the ivory while on patrol in the Sinamatella area., There is a high degree of suspicion here, which also relates to who he was with on patrol when he claims to have found the elephant carcasses, which were not reported as required, plus other rangers on the patrol with the suspect must have been complicit. Investigations continue
A Plumtree villager was found in possession of a pair of tusks he was trying to sell, and sentenced to a mandatory nine years.
Three pairs of tusks were recovered in Tsholotsho These persons seemed to be part of a syndicate who wished to buy cyanide to poison more elephants once they sold the tusks. Luckily this plan has been thwarted!!
A Binga man was found in possession of 6 pangolin scales and two python skins. He faces a mandatory nine years in prison
A Bulawayo man was caught in possession of 2 pairs of tusks he wished to sell. Again he faces nine years!
Two men were arrested in Hwange in possession of three tusks and await sentencing.
 
       Ivory from Sinamatella                               Ivory from Tsholotsho
In a major bust, a joint team of Parks Investigations and the Minerals, Fauna and Flora Unit of the ZRP arrested 6 men, while one escaped, near Kamativi in possession of 4 elephant tusks, a .375 rifle, and AK47, plus ammunition for the .375 and the AK. Follow up investigations uncovered 2 x .303 rifles and more tusks. One of the arrested men was a Zambian national while the one person who escaped was also a Zambian national. . The .375 and AK come from Zambia - this is the standard Zambian format of one guy armed with a heavy weapon - the hunter - and one with an AK - the protector. Forensic investigations are continuing to see if the weapons have been involved in other incidents
Congratulations to the team involved, Unfortunately, I think we will face a lot more incursions of this nature this year
GRATEFUL THANKS

We have had an amazing period of support from all our friends, new and old, out there, and we really appreciate all this support. Our heartfelt thanks to (in no particular order):
Patrick Jacquemin of Les Animaux for his generous donation
Mark Unwin and the Clarkson Family Trust,his generous donation.

AutoWorld Zimbabwe - Isuzu agents - for their support for the motorbike Enduro and thus for the Bhejane Trust
Hwange Conservation Society (UK) for their support and purchase of much needed equipment, through John Gillon and Anne Wilkinson
Ray Haakonse for his support
Adrian Clayton and NorthStar for their support
Frank Zindel of the Bright Light Foundation and a longtime supporter has made a very generous donation, which is very much appreciated.Thanks to Stuart Danks of Simply Africa for facilitation
Friends of Hwange and Dave Dell for sponsoring the borehole and new battery system at Masuma
Lion Recovery Fund and Rhino Recovery Fund  - a big thanks to Peter Lindsay and Markus Hofmeyr 
Morne and Michelle Muller of Surgical and Opthalmic Supplies for their pledge of support for this year, and purchase of a pump badly needed in the Chamabonda
Piet Weller, through Lionel and Annelise Finaughty for the offer to sponsor a wateroint in Kazuma in memory of Wessels Weller
Larry Norton for his offer of a percentage of sales of certain prints to go to the trust.
Dr Mark Bristow and Hunters and Guides for the financing of our Rhino Monitoring and Protection Unit. Mark came out and pledged assistance for a further three years!!! 
Simon and Portia Rowlands  - donation to refurbish attendants accommodation at Shumba
SATIB and the Southern Africa Conservation Trust for their support on insurances - thanks to Brian Courtney
Ian Gloss of Victoria Falls Liquorama for his continued assistance
Pieter and Anthea Erasmus for their continued support, and for the donated equipment.
Michel Buenerd of Le Pic Vert, and Le Pal Nature Foundation, for funding their eleventh borehole and pump in Sinamatella/Robins area!
Antoinette van Wijk of Holland for her sterling fund raising effort
Nicholas Duncan and the SAVE The African Rhino Foundation of Australia – a staunch supporter.
RAM Petroleum
Ricky Forster and Forster Irrigation of Bulawayo for donated pumps and continued assistance
John Karasellos of Hisspan Motors for his continuing assistance and support.
Inke Kreling-Boysen for her generous donation
Mike Karasellos for grading and mowing roads in the Chamabonda
Craig Gobey and Zambezi Sands Drilling for their assistance
Brendan Malloch-Brown - for his support with our new container office, refurbished by Brendon.
Michelle Sindall for her donation ( which finally reached us a month late!!)
Sandy Elsworthy for his donation
Machaba Safaris for their hospitality and assistance
Patrick Williamson for helping on updating maps
Jeff Weingarten - donation 
Richard Scripps - donation
Meikles Trust - Jeanne Moxon
Tony Wild of the Wild Cub Society (an NFT) for his donation
Colin Baker for the donation of tyres
Jeremy Nichol for his donation.

Thanks to our Board of Trustees for all the hard work they are putting in - Ian Gloss, Dave Carson, Dan Jones, Stephen Long, Jerry Gotora and Trevor Lane
 
A big thanks to Ministry and Parks Staff :
 Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality, the Hon. Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndhlovu
The Director General - Mr Fulton Mangwanya
The Chief Conservator - Mt Arthur Musakwa
The Regional Manager - Mr Samson Chibaya
Area Manager - Zambezi --Mr Marvellous Mbikbiyana
Area manager, Sinamatella - Mike Jonassi
Area Manager, - Robins and Kazuma - Mrs N Moyo
Kazuma Wildlife Officer - Aleck Makamure
 and all their guys on the ground for all their support and assistance.

To my wife Liz for her continual support in all my comings and goings, and for doing instagram!!

Apologies if we have inadvertently left anyone out!! Your help is much appreciated 

DONATIONS

Bhejane Trust relies on donations to continue it’s operations, which includes our daily operating costs, as well as specific projects. 

PLEASE HELP!! 

Donate to help us save our wildlife heritage - any donations would be gratefully accepted . Donations can be through our “PayNow” button (below) or direct to our bank account:

Bank details :

Bhejane Trust,
FBC Bank,
Sawanga Mall
Victoria Falls
Zimbabwe
Branch Code : 8512
Swift Code : FBCPZWHAX
Account No : 2245093780275

Bhejane Trust office address:
231 Sopers Crescent,
P.O.Box 210
Victoria Falls,
Zimbabwe

Note - we do not have postal codes in Zimbabwe (00)

CONTACT DETAILS

Trevor Lane : trevor@bhejanetrust.org         +263 777 057 024
Stephen Long : stephen@bhejanetrust.org 

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trevor@bhejanetrust.org

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Bhejane Trust · 231 Sopers Crescent · Victoria Falls · Zimbabwe

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