Sunday, April 7, 2013

Saving Jasiri, an elephant baby


We exist to protect wildlife in Kenya. We are best known for the hand-rearing of orphaned elephants, so that they can return to the wild when grown. Together we can give these orphans new life.
The DSWT is dedicated to the protection and conservation of wildlife and habitats in Kenya. Best known for the rescue and hand-rearing of milk dependent orphaned baby elephants and rhinos, so that they can return to the wild when grown, the DSWT also manages anti-poaching teams, mobile veterinary units and community outreach programs.
Company Overview
The DSWT is a registered charity in the UK, a Kenyan non-profit and a 501c3 in the USA, dedicated to the protection and conservation of wildlife and habitats in Kenya.

The DSWT was founded by Dr Dame Daphne Sheldrick in Kenya in 1977, in memory of her late husband, David Sheldrick, the naturalist and founder warden of Kenya’s Tsavo National Park. The DSWT embraces David’s vision for the protection of wildlife and habitats and undertakes a variety of projects aimed at ensuring a viable future for animals and people, where they might live in harmony.

Our charitable work can broadly be broken down into four main areas:

Orphans’ project
Following CBS 60 Minutes in the USA and the BBC’s Elephant Diaries programmes, this is perhaps the best known aspect of our work. Since 1987 we have successfully rescued and hand-reared more than 135 orphaned elephants and 14 black rhinos. This success has been possible thanks to our worldwide network of foster parents, our dedicated team of keepers and the efforts of Dr Dame Daphne Sheldrick and her pioneering work in identifying the husbandry and milk formula needed by orphans if they are to have any chance of survival.

Since 1999 we have undertaken anti-poaching operations in and around Tsavo National Park, Kenya’s largest Park, covering an area equal in size to the country of Wales. We currently operate seven fully mobile anti-poaching teams, tasked with removing illegal snares, arresting poachers, and educating and working with local communities to find solutions to the human-wildlife conflict and poaching of wildlife. Our anti-poaching teams have removed more than 100,000 illegal snares, saving literally hundreds of thousands of animals from the slow and intensely painful death these indiscriminate killing devices cause their victims.

Mobile Veterinary Support
In 2003 we introduced a fully mobile veterinary unit, offering immediate aid to animals injured or in distress in and around Tsavo, Shimba and Amboseli National Parks and surrounding ranches. This unit, now led by Dr Poghon (2010) has saved the lives of hundreds of animals of all species, aided in the rescue of orphans and provided veterinary treatment to animals in need.

Following the success of the original Vet Unit, and sadly a growing need for a similar mobile team elsewhere to help victims of illegal poaching, a second Mobile Veterinary Unit was setup in 2007, serving the Maasai Mara, Lake Naivasha, Ruma and Lake Nakuru National Parks. This unit is led by Dr. Mijele.

Community Outreach
We recognise that the long term conservation of wildlife depends on the people living alongside wildlife; as people and animals must learn to live in harmony with one another.

We undertake a wide variety of community outreach programmes in the areas of Nairobi and Tsavo, working with some of the poorest communities, to bring knowledge and resources to these people. This support is provided in the form of school trips into National Parks for children, who may otherwise have never seen their country’s own wildlife, video presentations at schools, and the provision of school books, art materials, sports equipment, desks, and water catchment facilities.

Through this process of support and working with local people, we can better understand the problems they face and work to find viable solutions. Where they learn to value and respect their wildlife and environment and choose to protect it.

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