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Queen Elizabeth Park to use ‘Bomb Pistols’ to control stray animals

Electric fences have been used before to control movement of Elephants. UWA is now opting for ‘bombs’ that make sound to scare the animals away

Kasese, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Queen Elizabeth National Park in Kasese District has launched the use of bomb pistols to stop game animals from straying into communities. A bomb pistol makes a loud sound simulating a gunshot and release smoke.

The development follows a public outcry by communities about the destruction of over 80 gardens in Kidodo cell in Railway ward Kasese municipality by game animals. Although the park is working on erecting an electric fence, the areas that haven’t been covered are prone to wildlife attacks.

As a result, management has launched the bomb pistols to scare the animals from straying into the communities since they no longer respond to the old control measures.

John Muhangi, the Warden Law Enforcement and Security in Queen Elizabeth National park, says they are cognizant that most game animals have found alternative routes, which they use to stray into communities where they wreak havoc.

He says they have decided to resort to bomb pistols with chilly and smoke since the animals had become accustomed to the old methods including sounds of AK-47.

Joshua Masereka, the Community Conservation Officer will lead the team on ground.

Martin Safari, the Central Division LC III Chairperson in Kasese municipality, says over 100 households in the municipality alone have lost their property and gardens to the wild life invasion.

Although he welcomes the new measure, he asks UWA to expedite the processes of fencing the entire park.

The Rwenzori East Region Police Commander, Samuel Asiimwe challenges the community to desist from harming game animals that stray into their areas. He observed the need for the community to appreciate UWA’s intervention and called on the community to protect wildlife.

Joshua Masereka. The Kasese Deputy Resident District Commissioner is optimistic that the introduction of bomb pistols and fencing will further reduce wildlife-human conflict.

Salvano Syabugha, a resident in Kidodo cell welcomes the intervention as a sigh of relief to the community that recently lost their gardens to stray elephants.

Syabugha however asks UWA to extend fencing to the area, saying animals will soon get used to the new method.

UWA has so far erected a fence from KCCL to kikorongo.

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