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African Painted Dogs

Anti-poaching teams working with NGO Painted Dog Conservation with Taronga’s support protect African Painted Dogs and many other species in Zimbabwe.

The Anti-Poaching Units (APU) are a core part of Painted Dog Conservation’s work and a critical component of protecting African wild dogs.  This project will deploy anti-poaching patrols on a daily basis through the Gwayi Conservancy and buffer zones surrounding Hwange National Park.  Anti-poaching teams will work with park staff to carry out patrols, during which they will locate and dismantle snares set for wildlife in the bush, including treating/freeing trapped animals whenever possible.  Information collected by the anti-poaching teams will be analysed to determine poaching “hot spots” to inform larger anti-poaching strategy. Conservative estimates indicate that approximately 10% of snares placed in the bush result in the killing of wildlife.  We will likely collect ~2,000 snares in 2016; thus, we estimate that the lives of more than 300 wild animals – a significant number of which are likely to be the endangered painted dogs – will be saved during this project period. We have also strengthened our partnership with the local authorities to try and ensure that poachers are convicted according to the letter of the law.  With funding from the Taronga Foundation for this program, we aim to increase the number of APU scouts employed by PDC from six to eight so that we can cover a wider patrol area on a more regular basis.

Painted Dog Conservation works to engage and incorporate local communities in protecting painted dogs in Zimbabwe.

What Can You Do?

Be a Responsible Dog Owner: Before purchasing your new family member make sure you research which breed best suits your lifestyle. And follow these tips:

  • Make sure your puppy has as many positive experience with other dogs (puppies and adults) as you can
  • Get together with some friends that have dogs that you are familiar with
  • Supervise interactions with young children, this will also teach children how to interact with a dog
  • Make your dog feel safe while letting it experience things it will be exposed to in your daily life. Cars, loud noises, people wearing funny hats and so on. Remember all of these experiences should be positive ones
  • This training should be continued even as an adult