Targeting wildlife crime interventions through geographic profiling
Seeing an animal hanging lifelessly from a snare is a heart-wrenching experience. Knowing that most animals caught in snares are left to rot without being used for meat or any other purpose might be worse.
Over an eight-year period, 2001–2009, we recorded 10,231 incidents of illegal hunting in a wildlife conservation area in southeastern Zimbabwe, the Savé Valley Conservancy (SVC). Sixty-three percent of these incidents used snares, which is an illegal form of hunting in Zimbabwe. Almost fifty-nine percent of animals caught in snares were left to rot on the snare lines. What if we could prevent these unnecessary losses?
The SVC is home to many iconic wildlife species such as elephants, lions, rhinos, giraffes, and buffalos. However, with the onset of political turmoil in the early 2000s, large sections of wildlife fencing surrounding SVC were removed, enough to make over 400,000 wire snares, many of which were recovered by anti-poaching teams. We found illegal hunting to be widespread throughout SVC. During the period of our study, we discovered the deaths of at least 6,454 wild animals, equating to a minimum of USD 1 million in financial losses annually – the ecological and financial scale of the problem is massive. However, in an area like SVC, which covers 3,450 km2, tackling the problem of illegal hunting is challenging.
Additional publication details
|Publication Subtype||Other Report|
|Title||Targeting wildlife crime interventions through geographic profiling|
|Publisher||Oxford Martin School: University of Oxford|
|Contributing office(s)||Wetland and Aquatic Research Center|
|Other Geospatial||Savé Valley Conservancy|