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Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project (MAPP), Zimbabwe

Saving the Matusadona National Park

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The Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project (MAPP) is a joint initiative with the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZPWMA), conservation organisations and tour operators, aimed at protecting fish and wildlife resources in and around the Matusadona National Park.

The Project's objective is to provide logistical support to ZPWMA in their efforts to contain illegal poaching activities.

Killing of Wildlife

Both black rhinoceros and elephant populations within the Matusadona National Park have suffered badly in the past decade through illegal killing for horn and ivory, to the extent that there are now very few rhinoceros left in the Park.  MAPP is now working with other organisations within the Park to extend its anti-poaching and intelligence-gathering focus to cover land-based wildlife killing as well as the depletion of fish resources.

The Trust’s objectives include, but are not limited to the following areas:

  1. To assist the Zimbabwean Parks and Wildlife Management Authority and its successors or assigns in preserving the fish population and wildlife including elephant populations in the greater Lake Kariba area, with particular focus on the Matusadona National Park , for the benefit of the citizens of the republic of Zimbabwe in perpetuity
  2. Mobilising resources for aquatic wildlife conservation, including but not limited to law enforcement and protected  area management
  3. Planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating aquatic/ wildlife conservation projects in the Kariba area of Zimbabwe with particular emphasis on eradicating elephant and fish poaching, illegal fishing activities and related illegal activities
  4. Developing and maintaining infrastructures and systems for efficient and effective aquatic wildlife and protected area management
  5. Elephant and fish population management
  6. Engagement and participation of communities adjoining the Matusadona area in the planning and development of elephant conservation programmes / projects
  7. Human – wildlife conflict mitigation programmes
  8. Aquatic wildlife conservation research
  9. Promotion of aquatic conservation education and awareness
  10. Elephant wildlife conservation research


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MAPP commenced operations in March of 2013, and has since been successful in detaining and confiscating numerous Zambian fishing boats, arresting their occupants and taking them to be tried at the Kariba courts.  Some have received 12 month jail terms. Regular patrols are conducted into the Sanyati Gorge where illegal fishing nets are confiscated, boats sunk, and temporary camps destroyed.

Camera traps have been placed at strategic locations throughout the Park and are providing useful records of animal and human activity which can inform the anti-poaching teams. 

All such activities are conducted professionally and in accordance with the laws of Zimbabwe. With the assistance of MAPP, The ZPWMA has been able to regulate the activities of the Kapenta rigs and fishing cooperatives and some suspected ivory poachers have also been arrested as a result of inland operations.

MAPP is on the road to achieving its objective but continuity is the key to success.  MAPP must demonstrate that this is not a "one off".  Any lapse in performance will open the door to renewed illegal activities. Longevity is crucial, and this can only be achieved with assistance in cash or kind, however big or small.

How Can You Help?

Firstly, thank you for taking the time to find out more about MAPP! You can be a ‘game changer’ in the future of the Matusadona National Park. The first step is to take a moment to see our Africa through the eyes of our children's children and imagine what you'd like them to experience. If you're anything like us, you'll want to preserve all the beauty and finery found in the Matusadona.

Please help us to support the Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project by making a donation today.


How can I make a donation?

There are many more ways you can help towards our goal. We understand that your giving is important to you and we want you to do it in the way that suits you. If you would like to find out about more ways you can support the Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project (MAPP), please contact our Individual Giving Manager at [email protected] and find out how we can make the best of your generous contributions.

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