To Catch a Poacher (7-minute Video)

To Catch a Poacher (7-minute Video)

Hunting companies in Zambia acquire leases from the government to hunt in game management areas (GMAs) under different chiefdoms.

These areas are managed by the game department but still belong to the chiefs.

Professional hunter Fico Vidale currently hunts in the Lunga Busanga Concession in the Northwestern province of Zambia, which is surrounded by multiple hunting areas that make it difficult for poachers to access Kafue National Park.

Fishing is a popular activity in the national park, with locals using weirs over streams and floodplains.

The Busanga Plains flood during the rainy season, making it a breeding ground for fish. When the floods recede, all the fish move back into the rivers. African Parks registers each fish weir and fisherman with a numbered shirt. However, some still use fishing as a cover for poaching.

Anti-poaching is mostly done during the hunting season and the dry season because of accessibility. Recently, a poacher was caught while Fico Vidale was hunting buffalo with a client, and African Parks prosecuted him. They have trained their people in prosecution and intelligence gathering. Poachers use crude firearms and can wound more animals than they kill, posing a danger to everyone in the area.