Beitbridge - Bulawayo - Chegutu - Chinhoyi -
Chiredzi - Gweru - Harare - Hwange - Kadoma - Kwekwe - Marondera - Mashava -
Masvingo - Mutare - Zvishavane
15 AUGUST 2003
Once again, we thank all of the individuals, organisations and businesses
who made it possible for Meryl to receive her heart operation. She is well on
the road to recovery - 'on the road' being exactly where she is - having been
given the all clear to start driving again.
Meryl has just returned from a very fruitful Baboon Control
Stakeholders' meeting with the Timber Producers Federation in Juliasdale. The
animal welfare concerns raised by the ZNSPCA are being taken seriously and Meryl
was gratified that throughout the meeting, National Parks referred to the ZNSPCA
as their 'colleagues'. Timber Producers have welcomed the participation of the
ZNSPCA who will be consulted and invited to monitor any problem animal control
exercises. They have also indicated that they would welcome any alternative
methods for the humane management of problem animals.
In spite of the deterioration of law enforcement in Zimbabwe, we are
pleased to report that all cases which have been brought to court by the ZNSPCA
this year have been won. The owner of the ex-Tredar dog which died after he had
failed to take the animal for veterinary attention, which was reported on
earlier this year, was found guilty. Two other cases involving neglect of a
herd of cattle and cruelty towards a cattle pony in Gweru were also won.
Meryl returned to the Ostrich farm in Bromley which was reported on in
July. Despite not having been served with a Section 8 Notice, the farmer has
now been evicted. He will be sending the entire flock for slaughter apart from
a few birds which he will attempt to relocate.
The Rescue Team have carried out three rescues since Meryl's return. They
received a report of dogs having been abandoned on Groovy Tuesday Farm. Two
Labradors were rescued and both have been rehomed.
In Mtorashanga, the army gave a farmer 24 hours notice to evacuate but they
were unable to load their three dogs - 2 Collie X's, 'Shumba' and 'Sally' and a
Rotty X, 'Major'. The Team went to the farm without a police escort and managed
to rescue all three animals - one had been left tied up at the front gate.
In one of the worst cases the Team has yet had to deal with, an elderly
farmer and his wife were attacked in Marondera. Both are in their 70's. The
farmer was called to the front gate and whilst he was distracted 4 men entered
the house through the back - they were all armed with thick wooden poles. The
farmer was badly beaten, his hands and feet tied and then tied together. The
assailants wrapped him in a tablecloth and then put an armchair on top of him.
At that stage he was struggling to breath.
Three of the assailants claimed to be War Veterans and were elderly. The
other assailant was young and attempted to rape the farmer's wife. She is
currently receiving ARV treatment. The farmer required several stitches to
close the wounds on his head.
The farmer's domestic worker and his wife were brought in with their baby
and 4 year old child. The couple were assaulted in the presence of the young
child and whilst the baby was still on the wife's back.
All were then tied up and the assailants loaded up the farmer's truck with
property and left. They returned later for another load. The farmer's wife
finally managed to free herself and broke out of the house.
One of the family's Scotty dogs 'Timolina' had a wound across her back
where she had been hit. The other Scotty 'Lizzy' had run away and when she did
not return the following day, Sunday, the team went out on Monday, happily to
find that she had returned uninjured but was very traumatised. She sat next to
Meryl on the way back to Harare and wouldn't leave her side. The Team returned
to help the family clear up the house which had been completely 'trashed' during
The wildlife situation remains cause for very grave concern. Hunters from
here and abroad are capitalising on the chaotic situation as well as other
unscrupulous individuals who are claiming that the wild animals on occupied
farms are a natural resource to be exploited. Hunting concessions are being
handed out in excess of recommended quotas. It is basically 'open season' -
even the 'presidential elephants' in Hwange are being poached.