Rwanda Returns Rescued Chimp to DR. Congo

An anonymous two-year old Chimpanzee that was rescued from poachers in 2014 by officials from the Volcanoes National Park and Rwanda National Police officers in Rubavu District was transferred to its home in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a week ago.

The Chief Tourism Officer of Rwanda Development Board Belise Kariza said: “Throughout the years we have increased the number of patrols around the national park, fenced off most of it and are constantly removing snares set up by poachers to get the animals. So far we have achieved a high level of success including changing some of the poachers into conservation officers.”

She said the rescue and capture of the culprits was a clear indicator of the stronger and well synchronized effort to stop poaching of the primates, and fortify the trans-boundary partnership between Rwanda, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo. According to the Chief Park Warden, Prosper Uwingeli, the Chimpanzee had been thoroughly checked over, beginning with a complete physical examination. Although emaciated, it was quiet and had been eating properly.

As par the Rwanda Development Board statement, the Chimpanzee had clearly been found using a catch as it was missing the big toe of the right foot and had two small simple wounds on the right knee.

The rescued chimp was additionally given a comprehensive checks by specialists from the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) and the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project and after that transferred to the Kinigi Quarantine Facility as per the established animal rescue protocol, where it has been staying.

There is no direct poaching of primates incorporating gorillas and chimpanzees in Rwanda, nor the killing or capture of their baby for the live animal trade. However these animals remain casualties of activities against different mammals like antelopes, buffaloes, monkeys and others, which might bring about wounds or sometimes deaths.