Chilli seeds and light aircraft—Latest update from GRI

Love Nature’s charity partner Game Rangers International have just launched an exciting new project in the south of Kafue National Park, combining women’s empowerment with human-elephant conflict mitigation. District Community Officer Britius Munkombwe trained the Shanangoma Women’s Group to sow and propagate chilli seeds, and to start their own chilli nursery.

The majority of mature chilli harvested from the Shanagoma Chilli Nursery will be used in blasters and fencing to safely deter elephants from maize farms, whilst surplus chilli will be sold as a cash crop, reducing reliance on maize. As wives to DNPW scouts, the 11 strong women’s group are are committed to helping protect both elephants and their neighbouring communities from conflict, and look forward to supporting subsistence farmers in the surrounding area.


In other news, the GRI’s Kafue Conservation Project (KCP) have acquired a 2009 Savannah VG aircraft. These come from Italy but are assembled in East London, South Africa. This one was purchased 2nd hand from Hilton, South Africa and is expected to be fully operational around mid-to-late October. It can take off and land in less than 100 metres of runway and can fly for nearly five hours. The savannah is being widely used throughout Southern Africa in the role of anti-poaching due to its low running costs, great viability, and ability to fly slowly and land pretty much anywhere.

GRI are in the process of setting up the hanger at Chunga Airstrip, which is the main base for the Aerial Unit. Other parks using the Savannah are Peace Parks in the Limpopo National Park—Mozambique, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife—South Africa and SANParks in conjunction with SAWC (peace Parks Foundation)—Kruger National Park.

Find out more about GRI on our Make A Difference page.