Start of Fieldwork Sept. 2010, a visit to Narrec

After extensively testing the GSM and GPS functions of the three 'combination' tracking units made by Juergen Perthold, Paul arrived in Windhoek on September 17th for a first preparatory project visit.

An introductory visit was paid to Narrec, the Namibia Animal Rehabilitation Research and Education Centre just North of Windhoek run by Liz Komen. Liz has a special relationship with the Ministry of Environment and Tourism.The primary focus of the Non-Profit centre is to provide professional care and rehabilitation facilities for injured, orphaned and misplaced wildlife in order to facilitate their release back into the wild. (see http://www.orusovo.com/narrec/ ) 

Their work often involves birds of prey, some of which Paul was shown by volunteer Narrec staff, Rose and Marsha during a tour of their aviaries.

Liz also has many years of expert experience in relocating and releasing pangolins that have been given into her care after being rescued from illegal possession or after injury: over the past 20 years Narrec has received about 40 pangolins. In each case the animals were confiscated from very badly managed environments. She has also been alerting the public of the threats to the pangolin species. (Read her article on 'Pangolins and TRAFFIC' )

Paul discussed the plans for our Pangolin Research project with Liz and her husband, Joris, learning more about the background on pangolins in Namibia. The situation with respect to their mistreatment or killing for sale to traditional healers has deteriorated. Sadly, they fetch a high black market price reputed to be of around N$10k (~ $US1500).

After a very constructive meeting, we have agreed to collaborate closely with Liz during our research project, e.g. on tracking rescued animals and especially later in improving the education about pangolins and getting them to be more respected.

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