NAKURU (Xinhua) -- World Wide Fund for Nature ( WWF) said Thursday it will spend 57,500 U.S. dollars in 2014 to boost Kenya’s anti-poaching operations at the Lake Nakuru National Park.
WWF Country Director Mohamed Awer said they will give the financial aid to the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) to purchase highly advanced equipment to out power those used by the poachers.
“KWS officers need high tech equipment to counteract the poachers. The current form of poaching is being characterized with use of highly sophisticated tools,” said Awer at the park during the celebrations of marking 40 years since WWF initiated conservation cooperation with the park’s management.
Ending the killing of most endangered species such as the rhinos and elephants in the country’s parks and sanctuaries, he said, required collective efforts from all stakeholders.
“KWS cannot fight poaching single handedly, it requires huge resources and that is why everybody is encouraged to bring to the table whatever is available to reinforce their efforts,” Awer said.
Recognising wildlife as the key driver of the East African nation’s tourism industry, the official emphasized the necessity of aggressively preserving and protecting the tourist attracting animals.
KWS Director General William Kiprono said the county loses 1.15 billion dollars annually as a result of the illegal wildlife trophies hunt.
He said KWS is currently implementing plans to strengthen its capacity to combat poaching in the parks and the sanctuaries.
Kiprono said KWS has bought nine state of art vehicles which will be dispatched to its rapid response unit to facilitate quick counter attacks when the poachers strike.
“Poachers should be aware that we are going to deal with them mercilessly. We have already distributed an additional total of 21 vehicles to various parks and have nine states of art vehicles which will be used by the rapid response unit,” he said.
The state’s agency which is responsible for protecting the wildlife is also in the process of acquiring high technology equipment capable of mapping out movements of the poachers.
This, as Kiprono said could assist them in arresting the poachers before they gain entrance into the protected reserves of the wildlife.
Lake Nakuru National Park being the sanctuary of the black rhinos in the country, Kiprono said they will employ coordinated techniques to avert any further killing of the endangered species.
“We have a total of about 100 black and white rhinos in Lake Nakuru National Park and to ensure the figures go up, we cannot afford to allow any poacher near the park,” he said.
Six rhinos have already been killed at the premium park since the beginning of this year.