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Wildlife lobby decries jumbo killings in Isiolo, Samburu

Tuesday, February 5, 2013 - 00:00 -- BY HUSSEIN SALESA

A lobby group has raised alarm over elephant poaching in Isiolo and Samburu districts. NORTHERN Range Land Trust yesterday called on the government and organisation involved in wildlife management to coordinate their efforts in protecting the animals.

The lobby group's conservancy coordinator Tom Lalampa said the northern circuit region lost 134 elephants last year. In 2011, 101 elephants were killed and in 2010, 63 elephants were poached.

Lalampa said poaching had become complex and increasingly difficult to deal with day-by-day. He said poacher are now using sophisticated weapons and tactics making it hard to fight them.

"We are worried that with the current trend of poaching our animals will be decimated," said the coordinator. "The poachers are have been encroaching into the protected areas. This is really dangerous."

Lalampa said his organisation has partnered with Safaricom to track down on poachers. He was speaking at Kalama Conservancy during the launch of the Trust's five-year strategy plan.

County Commissioners from Isiolo and Samburu regions warned that the government will put in place strigent security measures to avert elephant killings in the area.

Mr Wanyama Musiambo of Isiolo said the poachers must know that there days are numbered with cordination of two security teams from the region.

"We want to assure our partners and the donars that we are going to put in place all the neccesary measures to ensure that those behind the killings were arrested and prosecuted,"said Mr Wanyama.

The meeting brought together key actors in wild animal conservation and representatives of Usaid Kenya, Kenya Wild life services, representative of Dutch Embassy and Director of NRT Ian Craig.

According to the recently released elephants statistics in the area the number of elephants had reduced from 7415 in 2008 census to 6361 in the 2012 census while that of Grevy Zebra had also gone down from 2,400 in 2008 to 1870 in last year.