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NOVEMBER 2022
NEWSLETTER
Unfortunately I have found out the MASTERCARD does not work with the PayNow system
THE CONSTANTIA UITSIG / ARDMORE AUCTION
We had a fantastic fund raiser in Cape Town at Constantia Uitsig Wine Estate, organised by Anthea Erasmus (of Constantia Uitsig) and Fee Halsted of Ardmore. Anthea offered the facilities and the support of the estate, while Ardmore specialises in ceramic sculptures, with an international reputation. 
The auction of the sculptures was held in the modernistic winery room, and Fee and her team did a great job of setting the sculptures up. Interested buyers came to the auction, plus there were international bidders on line. The auction was a great success, and it was a fantastic evening with a wonderful atmosphere. 
A huge thanks to Anthea for her efforts and support, and to Fee and her team.
I am sure next years event will be bigger and better!!
Anthea Erasmus outside the "auction room" - the impressive modernistic winery at Uitsig
Ardmore art work that was on auction
We hosted Peter Lindsay from Lion Recovery Fund for a few days and were able to show him around our areas of operation, to see whar we have achieved and what problems we have encountered. Peter and the LRF have been good supporters of the Trust, so we were very pleased at this opportunity to show some reciprocation.
ZAMBEZI NATIONAL PARK
Of serious concern in the Zambezi National Park is the increase in poaching, mainly from Zambia. Much of this is wire snaring, but we have information that the commercial elephant poachers will be back. We are working with Parks to counter these threats.
All pumps are working well and we got through the dry season with no water issues! Of note are the large herds of buffalo in the vlei.
We are carrying on with our road maintenance program to make the Chamabonda all weather access  - we had gravel dumped thanks to Brendon Malloch-Brown, and then we have spread the gravel over most of the bad patches - using the services of a TLB donated by Tulley Huntley-Walker. We now wait to see how the road fares with the riany season!!
Our resident Bateleurs at No 3
KAZUMA PAN NATIONAL PARK
On a recent trip around the Kazuma Pan park, we did not see a single sign of elephant - they have all left as they do seasonally as soon as it rains in adjoining Botswana! With vast areas in Botswana, plus the top sections of Kazuma, having been burnt and then greened up with the rains, the herds of zebra, tsessebe and buffalo have dispersed, with just a few stragglers left behind.
With the advent of the rains, if they continue as at present, most of Kazuma will be inaccessible for the next few ,months, with April being the earliest  date we can get around in a normal year.
Aleck Makamure, Area Manager for Kazuma, at Roan Pan while we were on a planing trip. Since installing a new inverter at Roan, the pan has filled up beautifully!
The hide at Corner Pan  (note - the unfinished roof is deliberate - for star gazing, but will be closed off for the rainy season) Thanks to Kiggen Builders, we now have a storeroom and toilet/shower, plus a sink We have followed up and done most of the finishing touches, but need to sort out the water supply (a 2023 project!)
ROBINS
Robins has received good, but patchy, rains, and some of the roads are no longer passable. The Deka River came down in flood!
We have nearly completed our  water pump rationalisation program, with only a couple of pumps still to assess, so we are winding down for the year.
Njekwa Pan - trying to elephant proof the water outlet!!
SINAMATELLA
Report by Stephen Long
Rainfall and game water.
  November brings the start of the rains. Usually we have rain on around seven days of the month   and there is nothing much to report. Back in 2020 however, November was exceptionally wet and we went on to have a really good rainy season so I’m glad to be able to report that November this year was also unusually wet ……….
Perhaps that’s the start of another good season.
  The first rain came right at the beginning of the month and straight away, most of the elephants left us. That should have meant we had very little to worry about but in fact we had three lots of fairly major damage to contend with. First, the solar panel frame at Patrick’s pump (Shumba) was almost pushed down. To be charitable, that might well have been due to the wind as much as to elephants. The same might also be true for the mess we found at Tshompani………
  Some of the tension rods had been pulled out of the wind pump tower and twisted in a way that could only be thanks to elephants  but it may be that the wind supplied the finishing touch and brought the tower down.  
   The weather also played a part in the third piece of damage, at Shumba, where heavy rain created a gully, exposing the pipe running to the trough and elephants did the rest,  ripping up thirty meters or so of pipe and mangling it beyond use.
    We have, at least partly fixed all of those. The panel frame at Patrick’s is currently held together with guy-wires, pending complete replacement, the pipe to the trough at Shumba has been replaced (many thanks to Camp Hwange for help on that) and we have dismantled the Tshompani wind-pump and straightened all the steelwork, ready for rebuilding.
     The WEZ mammal Census took place in the Park in October and we received the results in November. Not all the Sinamatella pumped pans were covered this year but, using results from previous years as well, we can proudly say that by the end of the dry season, our Sinamatella water points are supporting at least 3400 elephants and 2400 other large mammals for a total of 5800 animals, ranging in size from elephants down to mongoose. The birds aren’t counted but there are thousands of those as well.
Wildlife
   As I’ve already mentioned, at the start of the rains most of the elephants leave us for a few months. The same is true of the buffalo and zebra and those species that remain are hard to see as the trees get their leaves.  In the space of a few days the Park changes from this….
To this….
And although there are not many big animals to see, there are plenty of others. The bullfrogs are busy calling from temporary pans……
Miscellaneous
  We were delighted to have a few visitors in November. First Peter Lindsay from Lion Recovery fund made a short visit to see how we are getting on. Unfortunately we failed to show him any lions, but we had more success with our second visitor, Sandy Elsworth, who is a borehole expert. Boreholes don’t hide away and we were able to show him plenty of them (though to most people they are a little less interesting than lions)…….
    Those two visits were perfectly timed, just before the rains, because once the rain fell, it was very difficult to move around for a while. We usually try not to drive on muddy roads, if only because of the damage it causes, but the Rhino Monitoring Unit was based for a while at the Pangari River and their vehicle had come in to Sinamatella for some small repairs so  we had to go out to resupply them. First we had to cross the Lukosi and after being stuck a couple of times and winching ourselves out, we came close to the Pangari, which had burst its banks and flooded the road…….
The Rhino Monitors  heard us trying to get through and came to help and eventually we reached their base. It seemed pointless to leave them where they were, the wrong side of the Lukosi, surrounded with mud and with more rain threatening, so they packed their soaking wet kit, hitched up their trailer and we headed back. It wasn’t an easy journey but between the Land Rover, the winch and manpower, we made it in the end……
RHINO MONITORING & PROTECTION UNIT

Report By Nick Long
    For the second month running, thanks to continual electricity cuts, I’m not able to upload all the SMART data onto the office computer and make a report, so I can’t say how many kilometers the Unit covered in November or how many patrols were anti-poaching and how many were rhino monitoring. Actually that isn’t altogether clear-cut anyway because often we are doing both at the same time! However many kilometers it involved, we had a busy month.
     Just before the rains we were patrolling well inside the Park when we found a very mysterious poacher base. In some ways it was quite normal with a small heap of ashes, wires for drying meat and some rough equipment (plastic sheeting and water containers) hidden for future use. What was unusual was that there were the remains of twenty-seven impala and four kudu scattered around and all of them seemed to have been killed very close to the base and butchered on the spot.
   Nobody could be sure exactly what had taken place there but most likely is that the poachers had set poison for an elephant or perhaps even a rhino and had accidentally killed a herd of impala instead. Rather than waste all that meat they had dried it and somehow carried it away. We still have many unanswered questions from this discovery but it has opened our eyes to the need for more anti-poaching effort in places that we previously thought were safe.
    Not long after this incident, we based for a while near the Pangari River and overnight there was very heavy rain. The river spilled over its banks, flooded through our camp and down the road towards the Lukosi. Next day we were picked up by a vehicle from Sinamatella and moved to a dryer and safer spot at Baobab Pan. From there we were able to patrol down towards the Tshakabika/Lukosi confluence where we thought we might find signs of poachers but we found nothing and moved on after a few days.
   Another place that we patrolled was Muchininga Spring in the Deka Safari Area. We haven’t been there for some time and we thought we might find either fish poachers along the Deka River or the very shy rhino we call ‘Ghost’ towards Bumbusi Camp. As with our patrol out of Baobab though, we found nothing of interest.
   That was the pattern for the rest of the month – a lot of moving around but not much action. With the start of the rains there is much less poaching activity and we don’t see much sign of poaching. The rhino are very mobile in the rains so they too are hard to find – but we’ll keep looking.
POACHING
. Of great concern though is the incident in Sinamatella which might indicate the reappearance of cyanide and rhino poaching! (see the above report)
Otherwise, it was fairly quiet, with one 308 rifle was recovered with ammunition in the Matopos area and one suspect arrested - possible rhino poaching averted!
There was a big increase in snare poaching and armed incursions into the Zambezi National Park from Zambia lately,. The Zambian operators and authorities have been very pro-active and are working together with our side, which is very encouraging. There is also an initiative on the Zimbabwe side to work with Parks on forming a specialised reaction unit to counter the threat

Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit (VFAPU) and Parks rangers found two snared buffalo in the Zambezi National Park, close to the river - the work of Zambian poachers. The poachers came the same night but unfortunately the ambush by Parks did not result in any arrests. The two buffalo carcasses and some snares were then recovered. 

 
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):
Simon and Portia Rowlands for funding the refurbishment of Shumba attendants quarters and the Shumba Camp
Ryan and Alex Lane for donation of a thermal imager - a great asset for night time ops, and for their cash donation
The Mzuri Wildlife Foundation for their donation towards Manzinbomvu Borehole.
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
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!!!
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, and for supporting our membership to GRAA.
Michel Buenerd of Le Pic Vert, and Le Pal Nature Foundation, for funding their THIRTEENTH  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.
Michelle Sindall for her donation ( which finally reached us a month late!!)
Sandy Elsworthy for his assistance and donation
Machaba Safaris for their hospitality and assistance
Patrick Williamson for helping on updating maps
Jeff Weingarten - donation 
Richard Scripps - donation
Colin Baker for the donation of tyres
Jeremy Nichol for his donation.
Ian and Sue Thomson for their support 
Charlie Bracher for his support
The Albert van den Berg Charitable Trust for their donation
Winston, Lol and Sue Goatly for their uniform donation
Lynne Beard for her uniform donation
Mark Bucknill for his donation
John Hall of the USA for his donation
Brink Bosman for his donation
Mike Howard for his donation of paint
Richard Jones for his contribution
Andrew Lane for sorting out QR codes
Andrew Holborn for his donation
Shearwater for diesel for the Chamabonda road project
Tulley Huntly-Walker for the use of his TLB

Andrew Brown and Browns Engineering, and Dale and John Kiggen from Kiggen Builders for their donations and efforts in putting in the hide at Kazuma


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

With the increased diesel costs, increased prices, increased requests for assistance from Parks, and the increased elephant and wildlife pressure at our waterpoints, the Trust is very financially stretched, and is appealing for support!
The Trust urgently needs your help, no donation is too small in this fight for our wildlife, please simply scan the QR Code or follow the PayNow link to donate. 
Any donation is much appreciated!

Unfortunately I have found out the MASTERCARD does not work with the PayNow system

Or you can donate directly to our bank account

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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