During a tough selection and training programme, rangers prove their mental and physical toughness, but it is within their diversity that lies their greatest strength. In Maputo National Park, a team of rangers are on patrol in the bush when female ranger Delta Rodrigo Manjate sets her X-Ray vision upon a deadly snare that has been set up to trap unsuspecting wildlife.
The role of a field ranger is to ensure the safety of wildlife which requires these rangers to work tirelessly in remote and vast areas, such as Maputo National Park. Apart from needing to be in peak physical condition, the mental resilience of these rangers is tested when on patrol, as they must remain alert over long periods of time.
In celebration of World Female Ranger Day, Peace Parks Foundation wants to celebrate and support the incredible role that our female rangers contribute to the protection of our wild spaces and the animals within them. In a largely male-dominated industry, there is a slow and steady growing force of females who have dedicated their lives to working on the frontlines. One such example is Ranger Delta Rodrigo Manjate.
She is one of the dedicated rangers working in Maputo National Park after completing her training in 2018. Very few women have achieved this as the training is extremely challenging.
Ranger Delta Rodrigo Manjate points out the steel snare hidden amongst the bushes to the rest of the team and explains that the footpath that it has been placed on, is a popular thoroughfare for elephants. These silent and deadly snares are usually set to catch birds and other smaller game, however it is not uncommon for them to trap unintended victims such as antelope in the process. Despite their size, snares can also cause fatal injuries to elephants as they can get stuck around their trunks or their legs. It is a prolonged and agonising struggle for any animal that gets caught.
Small-scale subsistence poaching methods like the one seen in the video above remain a large and ongoing problem for rangers in conservation areas. The local communities who are often responsible for setting up these snares in well-used game areas are dependent upon the natural resources in the area for subsistence and alternative food sources.
Peace Parks Foundation and partners are dedicated to working with communities to provide alternative sources of sustenance and developing programmes that aim to educate community members about the importance of wildlife for generating revenue and creating employment opportunities.
None of this would be possible without the bravery of these men and women who keep our wildlife safe and our ecosystems healthy. Thanks to their tireless efforts, we can create a future in which humans can live in harmony with nature.