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Poison Awareness Training

In Selous, we face a critical challenge threatening the delicate balance of its ecosystem: the pervasive use of poison. This alarming practice extends beyond its initial purpose in pastoralist communities, where it is employed to eliminate carnivores. Poachers exploit poison to evade detection by vultures, ensuring their illegal activities remain concealed. Even farmers, grappling with the dilemma of protecting their crops, resort to poison, inadvertently impacting wildlife.

One distressing incident vividly underscores the far-reaching consequences of this practice. A cashew-tree farmer, aiming to safeguard his blossoming crop, inadvertently unleashed a deadly chain reaction, claiming the lives of a dozen baboons. The collateral damage caused by such incidents poses a grave threat to the biodiversity of Selous.

In response to this pressing issue, Lion Landscapes has embarked on a crucial collaboration with The Peregrine Fund and the North Carolina Zoo’s vulture programme. Together, we are committed to fostering poison awareness and mitigating its detrimental effects on wildlife. This partnership has given rise to a specialised poison-awareness training programme, tailored to address the distinct challenges faced by the communities in Selous.

The initiative commenced in 2022, targeting pastoralists who have traditionally used poison for carnivore control. However, our ambition extends beyond this initial phase. Over the last few years, we have extended this vital training and expanded its scope to encompass non-pastoralist groups engaged in poaching and farming practices, recognising the broader impact of poison usage on Selous' diverse ecosystem.

Our collective efforts aim to empower communities with the knowledge and alternatives necessary to coexist harmoniously with the extraordinary wildlife that calls Selous home. By addressing the root causes of poison usage, we strive to create a future where the delicate balance of Selous is preserved for generations to come. Join us in our commitment to safeguarding this extraordinary landscape and its remarkable inhabitants.

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