Today in History: 1883 The last quagga dies in captivity at the Natura Artis Magistra zoo in Amsterdam

On the 12th of August 1883, the last Quagga died. It was not immediately recognized, as the mare expired, that she was the last of her kind. Although the name quagga refers specifically to an animal that looked like a common zebra that had run out of stripes on its hindquarter, it was often used, especially by Afrikaans speakers, to refer to any zebra.

As a result of this generalization, no one realized the significance of her death. It was as simple as that.

Like other animal species that disappeared in Africa during the 19th century, the quagga was hunted to extinction. It was the age of the great white hunter, when privileged Europeans with too much time on their hands and too much firepower at their disposal roamed Africa, killing indiscriminately.

Settlers in the new continent also hunted them. The colonials considered the quagga a pest, because it vied with their cattle for grazing land. Additionally, the meat was edible, and the hides were exported to the leather industry, making the quagga commercially viable.

While some accounts maintain that the quagga was deliberately exterminated, this does not appear to have been the case.

The hide of the last quagga, the one that had lived at the Amsterdam Zoo since 1867, is among 23 still extant. Her skull is also preserved. With the exception of one specimen in Cape Town and another in Kazan, the hides are scattered throughout Europe in museums.

Extinction means forever, but in the quagga’s case there is hope for resurrecting a close approximation to the original, if not the original itself. Since 1987, a breeding project has been under way in South Africa to produce an animal with the physical characteristics of the quagga, particularly its yellowish-brown color and the unusual striping pattern.

This is only possible because of DNA testing, which showed that the quagga was not a distinct zebra species as once believed, but one of several subspecies of Plains zebra. Through selective breeding of these close relatives, the project has succeeded in producing animals that closely resemble the original quagga.


*Image: The Quahkah, by Samuel Dani

The next step for Zimbabwe

I am curious as to how bad things need to get in Zimbabwe before something changes. The answer to this question is probably infinite. Nothing is going to change. Everyone is sitting around complaining and waiting. Everyone still in Zimbabwe and those on the outside message each other on WhatsApp about how bad things are, how terrible things are, the latest disaster and the latest exchange rate.

I am sure that everyone who either lives in Zimbabwe or has family still there is aware of what is going on but I will paint a brief picture. I saw a message the other day from Cathy Buckle. Civil servants are earning less than US$1 a day in an economy where a loaf of bread is around US$1.14 and a litre of milk is US$2.  Police officers are collapsing at work from hunger. They are being evicted because they don’t earn enough money to pay their rent.

Health Care

Zimbabwean nurses are being evicted from their hospital accommodation. This is in response to attempts by Parirenyatwa Hospital management to intimidate them through eviction notices. The health professionals are being victimised for joining a strike which began last week.

And while this is happening, the Minister of Health has been fired for being involved in a scam of US$60 million.  “Zimbabwean Health Minister Dr. Obadiah Moyo has been fired over alleged involvement in the $60 million COVID-19 scandal that also roped in President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s family.”

I briefly mentioned Covid but quite frankly, this is an impending disaster on a mass scale. I spoke to a friend of mine who lives in India a few months ago before Covid19 took hold. He was confident that it would not be an issue. The lock-down was being enforced by police beating people in the street who where in groups or had no reason to not be at home. And yet, look at India now. They have jumped to the third highest number of cases in the world. South Africa’s cases are rapidly increasing and is currently 10th in the world with the number of infections.

From a common sense perspective, how do you think a country with zero health care, no money, underpaid medical staff and an incompetent Government is going to fair in such a crisis?

CIMAS, the primary medical aid organisation in Zimbabwe, basically has a licence to print money. The Government banned the use of the US dollar and yet you can only pay CIMAS in US dollars. Prices change every month. There are huge shortfalls that need to be paid if you need an operation that CIMAS doesn’t fully cover. To the tune of over US$1000 depending on the operation required. So CIMAS pays for the operation but then you have to pay the doctor, anaesthetist, nurse all in US dollars.

If I am honest, I can’t actually blame them because they don’t get paid by our illustrious Government so how else will they survive? I literally have an invoice from a doctor in Zimbabwe with the amount in ZWL. And then in pencil, at the bottom of the invoice, is written + 100USD.

The problem I find in Zimbabwe where it is the survival of the fittest and wealthiest is that the people do not bond together. They fight against each other to survive. The people of Zimbabwe do not unite to fight the common threat which is Zanu PF.

CIMAS Offices in Borrowdale Park

Zimbabwe Economy

Things have got progressively worse in Zimbabwe until it reached it’s zenith in 2008. In June 2008 the annual rate of price growth was 11.2 million percent. The worst of the inflation occurred in later in 2008, leading to the abandonment of the Zimbabwe dollar. The peak month of hyperinflation occurred in mid-November 2008 with a rate estimated at 79,600,000,000% per month. This resulted is US$1 becoming equivalent to the staggering sum of Z$2,621,984,228. You really can’t comprehend these kind of figures. Prices in the shop changing multiple times during the day. Accounts software could not handle staff being paid over a trillion Zimbabwe dollars a month.

And right now, Zimbabwe is heading back down this road. The Zimbabwe dollar was rebooted not so long ago and started its new life with an apparent 4 ZWD to 1 US Dollar. It now sits at ZWD$361 to US$1 and is rapidly declining. While it is not at 2008 figures, the signs are there that this will be it’s destination if there is no decisive action.

I do believe that the catalyst for eventual 2008 implosion was the taking of the white owned farms. The reason for taking the farms was not the actual reason they were taken. They were simply taken and given to Government ministers. Had the farms been taken and black farmers empowered to farm them, there would have been a different outcome. However, this didn’t happen. It was simply used an excuse for those in power to grab land.

The black farm workers became instantly unemployed, over two hundred workers per farm, plus all their families. The farms stopped operating which meant no food or tobacco was being produced. No food to feed the people. No tobacco to export to generate revenue for the Country. The bread basket of Africa is now a black hole.


The elections in Zimbabwe have been a lesson to the rest of the world in how to rig elections. It got to the point that Zanu PF didn’t even bother to rig the elections anymore because it doesn’t actually matter who wins on paper, Zanu PF remain in power. And you know why? Simply because no one will do anything about it. No one within Zimbabwe and nor the rest of the world. Mugabe simply did as he pleased and now so does his replacement, President Mnangagwa. The sanctions imposed by other countries really only hurt the people and not the Government. This is the only action that seems to be taken.

The facts are that Zanu PF has ruled with corruption and brutality since 1980.  It is in it’s culture. They don’t know any other way to try and run a country. They certainly have no skills, morals or ethics. They care only for themselves and building immense wealth while starving and abusing their people.  Being in power is about wielding that power and making money. The buying of vehicles ahead of food and medicine confirms that Zimbabwe is being run by clueless people.  But we should not be surprised at all. Remember, Zanu PF has at its leadership core three people accused of having a hand in the 1983-87 Gukurahundi massacres.

Recent reports reveal that at least 50 human rights activists and opposition politicians have been abducted and tortured since President Emmerson Mnangagwa won a controversial election in July 2018, but to date, no one has been arrested for the offences.  Apparently, the Foreign Affairs minister said that government was committed to upholding human rights as seen by the recent arrest of six police officers in Bulawayo accused of assaulting Cowdray Park sisters Nokuthula and Ntombizodwa Mpofu.

Three MDC Alliance activists claimed that they were arrested at a roadblock before being abducted at Harare Central Police Station by State security agents, who went on to dump them in Bindura after subjecting them to torture and sexual abuse. Zimbabwe is not a good place to speak out. Zanu PF said the incident was made up.

Anyone who does stand up and protest suddenly dies in a car accident because a black dog jumped out onto the road in the middle of the night. The driver obviously had no injuries. Henry Olongo, the Zimbabwe cricketer has to flee in 2003 for fear of being murdered by Mugabe’s death squad.


What’s next?

I have often told the story that when I was 12 years old living in Zimbabwe that I knew then that things where never going to change. My dad constantly said things would suddenly change and countries where lined up to send in aid into Zimbabwe once Mugabe had been disposed. However, I saw no one taking action and I knew it would only change if I did something personally. I would have to somehow get rid of Mugabe and free the Zimbabwe people.

And here we are, 32 years later and the only thing that has changed is things have become worse beyond comprehension and we have a clueless replacement for Robert Mugabe. I believe that people need to earn respect and be rewarded for their achievements. The only respect Zanu PF get is out of fear of being killed for speaking up.

If a dog had to live in this kind of society, you would put it down as it would be too cruel. And yet the Zimbabwe people have had to live like this for over 20 years now. In fact, back in 1998 I worked at CF Tulley in the configuration department. We would configure new computers before they were sent out to customers. There were about four of us I think, including a black guy. Apart from being a great guy, I will never forget that even back then and even though he had a good job, he could only afford to eat once a day. As I said, things have become incomprehensibly worse since then.

My hesitation for standing up apart from the obvious has always been the safety of my parents. However, I genuinely don’t how they will survive in such an environment for another twenty years. How long do I wait before I stand up and say enough is enough. How long do you wait before you stand up and say enough is enough. We fear death but we should really fear life in such a hell hole under an oppressive Government while the rest of the world pretends everything is fine and basically doesn’t care. There are no human rights in Zimbabwe, there is no law.

We talk about BLACK LIVES MATTER! What an absolute joke. There is an entire country of black people suffering beyond measure, no food, no jobs, living in fear. Why don’t all these famous black people look at Africa and take some action rather than complaining that not enough black people hold board positions. If you think you have it tough or you are suffering, try live a day in the life of a black Zimbabwean.

So here I am. I am willing to stand up. I will be the next Zimbabwe president if that’s what it takes. If I get enough support then I will do this. I don’t do this out of ego, I don’t do this to make money, I do this because someone needs to. I am not saying I am the best person for the job but I do know that my Jack Russell could do a better job of running the Zimbabwe Government that it’s current inhabitants. Who will join me? How do we achieve this? I don’t know if Zimbabwe will accept a white president but I do know that we can’t do nothing.

Now is the time to we save the lives of millions of people and do some real good in this world. The Zimbabwe people deserve better, they have suffered for long enough. They are hungry and need to be fed, the need to feel safe, they need to earn a living, they need education and they need health care.


And just in case you think this is all a little over dramatic, imagine the little girl in the picture below is your child. This is in Zimbabwe, this is the daily life of poor and deprived kids in 2020.‬ ‪These are the direct consequences of ZANU PF LOOTING of public funds that are meant for social welfare!‬ ‪Little kids are robbed of their childhood, and have to work for survival at 3 years of age!‬

Over US$100million was LOOTED at NSSA by ZANU PF heavyweights who bought houses in South Africa, Dubai and London. Meanwhile back home the correct beneficiaries of those looted funds are crashing stones for a living at the age of 3.

Elephant Calf with badly snared left hind leg


 Trust Details At Bottom Of Email

REMEMBER: When Driving or walking,

Animals always have the right of way !!!!


See the updates –


LOOK  who was caught on camera !!

This is our little Kasese girl who you helped with the removal of a deeply embedded wire snare, along with the Chopper that assisted with moving her Ma, siblings and extended family away to make safe way for all of us to get in there and assist her.

It is not very often we get to see the after, live, or follow up images on animals we have assisted and when we do it makes all the blood, sweat and tears even more worth it.

It has healed so well in such a short time.  Young always heal quicker in most aspects of life.








OUR BELOVED CHOORI !! goes to town …….. in June –  the middle of winter

This poor old girl has many a tale to tell if she could talk. She has done the daily snare patrol drop offs and collections for so many years, as well as many rescues, chases etc. and besides being our loved work horse she has strong sentimental ties with us.

She was very kindly loaded on to JIM PERRY transport and taken through to Harare to MR CRUISER ZIMBABWE for lots of TLC.

The list of repairs is long but we know she will come back strong again but am sure she will have a sulk for a while due to being sent to freezing weather !


JIM PERRY transport for carrying her through.

CHAWARA HARBOUR for loading her.

MR CRUISER ZIMBABWE for the work they are doing on her.

We will put out an appeal for any parts they cannot supply once we have the list, so we can get her back home soonest.





EMA – Environmental Management Authority

Keep Zimbabwe clean

Littering is an offence.

Avoid prosecution by not littering. .

Report all environmental crimes:

Toll Free 08080028

0779565707 Whats App  EMA Harare

0773487141 Cell, Sms or Whats App  EMA Kariba


ZIMPARKS AREA MANAGER  –  Mr D Sithole 0775 971 799  

ZIMPARKS SENIOR RANGER Nicholas – 0772 762 500

Toll free – ZIMPARKS AREA MANAGER –  Mr D Sithole – 0738 813 441

For any donations, help offer, more info, or information on injured animals or incidents with Wildlife please contact below



Debbie Ottman  0773 996 487– KARIBA

Sonya Mc Master  0772 874 352 – KARIBA

WHATSAPP  NUMBERS – for photos or messages

Sonya Mc Master 0778 733 784

Debbie Ottman 0784 512 921


Carl Nicholson  – Kariba Dangerous Drugs License Wildlife Darter 0773 279 746 – KARIBA

Tracey Bruk-Jackson – Harare representative

(contact for donation drop offs etc.)

Whats app 0771 567 032

Phone number 0712 205 384






Sonya Mc Master (Registered Name – Stroebel) 0772 874 352

Debbie Ottman  0773 996 487




ACC No: 100 265 7636

2 bystanders killed by Police sparking violence in Harare

A police officer allegedly shot and killed an innocent bystander after the police had been engaging in running battles with kombi drivers. Violence broke out in retaliation in the Harare central business district late yesterday evening (22nd of Feb 2018)

The violence outbreak started when the police fired at a kombi that was near the Seke Road flyover. It was reported that one person had died and another was seriously injured.

It is still not obvious what triggered the battle between the ZRP and kombis, which lead to one of the officers drawing his weapon and shooting at least two bystanders. Members of the public in the area then besieged the Harare Central Police Charge Office, where they wanted to lay a charge against the officer responsible for the shooting.

the public started throwing rocks at the police and police vehicles parked outside the police station. The result was that a car was burnt and another vehicle also caught on fire. The police response was to fire teargas to disperse the angry crowd.

Roads leading to the charge office were later blocked to the public.

The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP), admitted it was investigating deadly clashes between the force and the public.

The police confirmed only two people had been killed in the altercation, and not three people as earlier reported on the Thursday night clashes.

General Godwin Matanga (Police Commissioner) conveyed condolences to the families of the deceased and described the incident as “regrettable”.

“The ZRP is seized with the matter and I have since directed a team of expert investigators to extensively establish the cause, what transpired and who was responsible,” said the Police Commissioner. Mr Matanga assured the Zimbabwean public that “action will be taken and investigators will leave no stone un-turned”.

Violence of whatever form is not tolerated, he declared.

The Police Commissioner said police officers opened fired at pedestrians, killing two on the spot and injuring four others after a commuter omnibus refused to comply with an order.

He said while police and other security services, including the Harare Municipality, were implementing an operation to decongest Harare city centre, the government has since issued a directive to halt the operation against the kombi drivers. However, members of the security services continued enforcing the ban, apparently unaware of the halt command.

This subsequently led to confrontation between kombi operators and the police resulting in the shooting incident. This kicked off public outrage as citizens demonstrated against the killing.

It has been reported that three cars were burnt and extensively damaged while 3 police officers were injured, according to Matanga. It gets worse as the police have appealed to members of the public to help identify the deceased, as they did not have identity particulars on them.

Are we ready for a New Zimbabwe?

I understand that people are concerned as to what is going to happen now Mugabe has finally been ousted but I still sense an underlying feeling of better the devil we knew than a new unknown President that could be worse. I do find it incredulous.
There was this feeling for many years but surely, since the economy started going down the toilet 18 years ago, our fellow countrymen lost their farms and family’s have had to split apart and move to different parts of the world. Our countrymen have been tortured, starved, beaten, killed. We have been unable to buy basic goods in the shop at times. Our currency became worthless. The list goes on and is beyond measure and comprehension. 
Everyone fears change but it is inevitable. Mugabe was going to die in the near future anyway. Do we really think things are going to be worse? They would definitely be worse if Grace got into power as she is the real devil but this isn’t going to happen.
The most important thing is that as Zimbabweans we must not let this happen to our country again. We need to stand up before it is too late. We need to fight before it is too late. We need to learn our lesson before it is too late. Do we understand this? Are we willing to not let the next person destroy what little is left of our beautiful country? Are we going to ensure another evil dictator does not rule for the next 37 years? What will we do if it looks like it will happen again?
I know a lot of people tried to fight and I know we appreciate their efforts and courage. But what will we do different this time? We have lived in fear for so long. What is going to change now?
As Zimbabweans, we are a fiercely proud nation. We are not black and white, we are Zimbabweans. We stand together. We love our country. We love our people.
I have to admit that I am angry that Mugabe has gone now. I am angry the military finally took charge now. This should have happened 10 years ago. Why did they not stand up 10 years ago? How many Zimbabweans have suffered and died in the last 10 years? I know my parents are having a hard time. I know it is no picnic living in Zimbabwe. The truth is that faced with Mugabe’s replacement being Grace, enough was enough. But why was enough not enough 10 years ago?
Secretly I have always been prepared to be the President of Zimbabwe. And while a lot of you may find this laughable, it is purely out of love of my people and wanting to lead such a proud nation that does not deserve the suffering it has been through for so many years. It sure isn’t for money or wealth as there is none.
Zimbabweans have stood together as oppressed, now we must stand together and make sure we learn from our mistakes and look after our fellow Zimbabweans. I am so proud of our nation, I have always been proud to be second generation Zimbabwean. I want our country to once gain become the bread basket of Africa.

David Shepherd

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Mr David Shepherd, a much loved father and grandfather, an incredible artist and a true conservation hero. David has left an extraordinary legacy, which will continue to resonate in the work that we do at Game Rangers International-GRI. He founded the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation-DSWF in 1984, and was instrumental in establishing GRI in 2008, serving as our Patron since that time. David has been a constant source of inspiration and support to us all. He was the epitome of determination and dedication – values which we will continue to uphold in our daily efforts to conserve Zambia’s wildlife. He will always be remembered as The Man Who Loved Giants. …

May his wonderful Soul Rest in eternal Peace.

I personally have one of his paintings in our lounge. I recall going to see him give a talk at the Sheraton Hotel in Harare many years ago. Must have been in the late 1980s. I have always admired him and been a fan of his work. A truly genuine and gifted man looking after our precious wildlife.

This is his charity website –

David Shepherd was born in Hendon, north London, and is the son of Raymond Shepherd, an advertising man, and Margaret (nee Williamson), a housewife. David was sent to Stowe school, in Buckinghamshire. Regretfully, this was not money well spent as he did not achieve a lot at school and was was not a fan of rugby. “The game was compulsory at school and I was terrified of it,” Shepherd later said.

He left at the earliest opportunity and, funded by his father, travelled to Kenya to become a game warden. “I knocked on the door of the head game warden in Nairobi and said, ‘I’m here, can I be a game warden?’ I was told I wasn’t wanted. My life was in ruins.” David spent a brief period as a hotel receptionist on the Kenyan coast, until returning to the UK. He met by chance a jobbing artist named Robin Goodwin, who took Shepherd on as an assistant at his studio in Chelsea, west London, where the bread and butter came from painting portraits and marine subjects.

Read more here

$40m lost to bank queues every month in Zimbabwe

$40m lost to bank queues every month as ZRP (Zimbabwe Republic Police) fines gobble 76% of the withdrawn cash.

About $40 million is lost every month as wages paid to unproductive workers who spend most of their time in bank queues as a result of the incessant cash shortages while most of the withdrawn money is spent on police fines, a new report by the Industrial Psychological Consultants (IPC) shows.

zimbabwe republic police

The 2017 IPC research, Productivity losses as a result of Bank Queues, was designed to find out productivity loses caused by bank queues currently being experienced countrywide as the government struggles to contain an acute cash shortage.

A total of 1 062 people, 62, 3% male and 37.7% female, participated in the survey.

According to the report, 76,98% indicated that they use a bank account to receive their salaries, 2, 23% for savings while 17,35% said they used their accounts to pay expenses with 3,44% not specifying what they used the accounts for.

The respondents said they visited banks instead of using other forms of payment because of landlords who demand cash, to pay for transport, domestic workers who do not have bank accounts, service providers and shops in town who demand cash only and for children’s pocket money.

“On average, employees are spending 2, 5 hours every time they visit the bank every week,” the report noted.

“This roughly translates into $40 million lost in wages paid to employees who are not productive every month using a median wage of $520 per month.”

The report noted that if the cash shortages continue at the current rate more money will be lost every year through unproductive wages.

“It is interesting to note that police fines (76.80%) take away most of the cash people withdraw from the banks, followed by domestic workers and facial and hair treatment,” the report noted.

IPC also concluded that authorities need to create a conducive environment to allow ordinary people and businesses to take their money for banking.

“No sane person would go and bank $100 cash which they would struggle to get from the bank when they need it. It is that simple,” noted the report.

“On alternative forms of payments the authorities would need to double their effort as most people especially the landlords and commuter omnibuses prefer cash for payment of rentals and transport fares.

(AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)

“Why is this category of service providers not accepting alternative forms of payments? The demand of cash will significantly go down if the authorities can persuade landlords, the police, transport services providers and business in the SME sector to accept other forms of payment. It would seem the problem is not the shortage of payment platforms but resistance and the need to have cash.”

If you live in Zimbabwe, how are you coping with this situation?

Hyena Release Update – Kariba


HYENA –  MR BONES – 3 WEEKS of confinement, care and fattening up !!

See the KAWFT face book for video updates – the last few days videos still to be posted.


DAY 5 – 12/2/17

Skinny bean. Ate a kg of liver during the night ON HIS OWN, drank a litre of milk and water and was sitting FOR THE FIRST TIME on his haunches in the morning and early evening when it is normal wake up time – STANDING and moving on wobbly legs, drinking plenty of water/mild mix and carefully eating his way through his chopped up meat.

Battles to chew if the pieces of meat are not cut into slithers due to the weeks of the large wire cable in and across the back of his jaws. So, a delicate eater at the moment but the daily improvements to his health and strength are momentous.

DAY 7 & 8 – 14&15 /2/17

Smelly shredded fun foam out and grass in. Not so much fun but cleaner and comfy. Improvement continues. Copious amounts of water drinking all the time, good re-hydration and eating well.

DAY 8 – 15/2/17

Improving in leaps and bounds but has a long way to go before fit for release.  Does not want to wake up. Cool afternoon and nice and soooooo comfy.


DAY 10 – 17/2/17

Back, pelvis wound where all the maggots were !!! healing very well despite the way it looks.

DAY 17- 24/2/17

Fat belly and amassing weight. Large chunks of meat now, that he rips apart himself

DAY – 18 & 19

Photos taken of main wounds and sent to Dr’s Keith Dutlow and Lisa Maribini Aware Trust – to ascertain if all well enough to take this boy back home !!

DAY 22  1/3/17– HOMEWARD BOUND !! patient discharge day.

Cage with Mr Bones loaded onto the trailer.  Parks Rangers No.2’s –  Nicholas Chinembiri and Edward on site.

Cage covered with old sheets to avoid too much stress for him whilst travelling out of the Kariba area.

Mr Bones – as Hyenas do – shreds the sheets in no time and then manages to get under the steel sheet on the floor of the cage.
Convoy comes to a halt whilst everyone assists to lift the steel sheet up and secure it up with wire, keeping fingers outside of the cage !!!


Cage lifted off ….. every ones fingers still intact !

The door to freedom opens and he just sits !!


Another vehicle arrives and whilst we are trying to halt the vehicle so it does not drive into Mr Bones when he walks out the cage ………………………….

He makes a high-speed dash for it and this is the only photo we luckily managed to get  !! A FLASH IN THE DARK and he is gone.

First run he has had in 3 weeks.. !!


Please keep a look out for Mr Bones, his scars will be a sure ID of him and we would appreciate any feedback and photos if possible. (see contact details bottom)   Next year we may even see his progeny – little bones.


Thank you to

Parks Area Manager and Rangers,

Aware Trust Vets

Kariba Residents – reporting and help

KAWFT team

and all those that assisted with the rehabilitation of this boy


        DONATIONS & assistance very kindly received_and much appreciated – THANK YOU


Amazing response to our plea for assistance – from within Kariba, Zimbabwe and afar.

We will be putting in place, first a critical rehabilitation unit – where the likes of Mr Bones would “get well” and then another for the likes of the snared young Lion for a few days recuperation to make sure all is well before heading back into the wild.

This is only due to the amazing support received and that we are still receiving.

HUGE assistance to the Rehab Units to be built.




KOALA PARK Butchery – Meat



CRISPY FRESH – Transport




























For any donations, help offer, more info, or information on injured animals or incidents with Wildlife please contact below


Phone numbers

Sonya Mc Master  0772 874 352 – KARIBA

Debbie Ottman  0773 996 487- KARIBA

Dick Mc Cowan Hill 0772 600 187 – KARIBA


WHATSAPP  NUMBERS -for photos or messages

Debbie Ottman 0784 512 921

Sonya Mc Master 0778 733 784


Tracey BrukJackson – Harare representative

(contact for donation drop offs etc.)

Whats app 0771 567 032

Phone number 0712 205 384







Sonya Mc Master (Registered Name – Stroebel) 0772 874 352

Debbie Ottman  0773 996 487





ACC No: 100 265 7636


Report injured animals, suspected poaching etc – contact details


ZIMPARKS AREA MANAGER  –  Mr D Sithole 0775 971 799  

ZIMPARKS SENIOR RANGER Nicholas – 0772 762 500

Toll free – ZIMPARKS AREA MANAGER –  Mr D Sithole – 0738 813 441


Sonya Mc Master  0772 874 352 – KARIBA

Dick Mc Cowan Hill 0772 600 187 – KARIBA

Debbie Ottman  0773 996 487– KARIBA


WHATSAPP  NUMBERS -for photos or messages

Sonya Mc Master 0778 733 784

Debbie Ottman 0784 512 921


Harare SPCA about to close?

Image result for spca

The Harare SPCA will be unable to keep its doors open to the animals in need after December 2016. Everything in the power of the Volunteers, Council members and Management has been done to try and save the Society.

Established in 1911, the Harare SPCA is the oldest animal welfare organisation in the country.

The SPCA is a registered non -profit organisation (PVO 83/67) and receives no government or municipal funding. The SPCA relies entirely on the support of concerned individuals and corporates for funds to keep the Association running. Their role is to provide care for all animals in and around Harare and at the same time to prevent ill treatment and cruelty to animals.

They cover the whole of the Greater Harare area which includes Chitungwiza, all high density areas and Ruwa under sometimes rather difficult circumstances but never refuse any call for help. The SPCA inspector carries out investigations and deals with any cruelty cases, road traffic accidents and lost or stray animals.

The harsh economic climate has taken its toll on this non-profit making, Private Voluntary Organization. The Harare SPCA is overseen by a small group of people who have tried their utmost to keep offering succour to the hundreds of abused, neglected and abandoned cats and dogs that have, through no fault of their own, suffered physically and emotionally but have survived. Without the HSPCA there is no plan B.

A day in the life at HSPCA

In order to give you an idea of the challenges faced on a daily basis by the HSPCA, I will give you a brief description of a normal day for those dedicating their time and heart and soul for the welfare of animals in desperate need of help.

Opening time for the Harare SPCA is 0730. Before that, as early as 0600, one of the managers of the Hospital is already doing rounds, checking on the condition of the animals in the hospital wards, convalescence kennel blocks, quarantine kennels and Parvo wards. At the Kennels the supervisor is doubling up, stepping in for staff on their day off. The whining, crying and barking of caged dogs and the desperate mewing of cats is the greeting the staff receives. The day begins with checks on all the animals followed by cleaning of cages, preparation of food and filling of water bowls. Most animals beg for a pat, a stroke and the slightest acknowledgement that they exist.

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At the Hospital sick in-patients are attended to by Vets and out patients begin to arrive … the surgery waiting room fills up. Most owners cannot afford treatment for their pets. The HSPCA never turns an animal away.  The smallest donations are accepted for the treatment of sick and injured animals. Spays and neuters are often carried out free of charge to try and staunch the endless litters of unwanted puppies and kittens. Kennel hands endeavour to give as many animals as possible some exercise, a brush and some enriching games – especially with the kittens and pups .

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The phones ring incessantly, reports of cruelty abound. Which call needs the most urgent attention? Do we attend to the hit and run survivor dragging itself to hide away in fear and pain, do we collect the abandoned dog tethered with wire literally starving to death or rush to catch an animal which is behaving strangely and which could be rabid and a huge risk to the public? Strays and surrenders to collect, orphaned pups and kittens found in ditches and storm drains to retrieve. Feral cats are breeding out of control and humane traps need to be set in the evenings and checked in the mornings. One vehicle, one driver!   And so the day continues.

There is no electricity at the Kennels as the bills are un-affordable. There is no municipal water at the Kennels and there are at least 200 animals that need their cages washed down 3 times a day. Bulk water is bought as the borehole water is dwindling.  Some days there are no visitors, not one animal is booked for re-homing  – yet animals are admitted on a daily basis and decisions have to be made.

Many animal shelters around the world only keep animals for 7 days – the HSPCA tries to re-home its residents within 6 months.

Then of course we have to speak about humane euthanasia. There is no nice way of putting this. It is beyond the imagination of any person that hasn’t worked in a shelter. It is gut-wrenchingly sad to make the decision of which animals have to be put to sleep. The very sick, very old, the aggressive, the broken down and the injured beyond repair are the first to go. In some ways releasing them from pain and fear is a blessing to them but what about the ones we have nurtured, loved, played with…the plain dogs with the most incredible characters – ignored because they just aren’t quite what people are looking for. Nobody wants them.

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They spend months waiting, looking out for owners who never come, hoping to go out for a run – and then we take them, apologise for a lousy world and we hold them close as they take their last breath, hopefully feeling the love we have for them, probably more love than they have ever known in their short meaningless existence.

The day continues into afternoon. Phones ring, meals are fed, cages are cleaned, finances are juggled. What is needed the most at the end of this day – Food? Drugs? Fuel? Wages? Uniforms? There are phone bills , water and electricity bills to pay. Repairs and maintenance cannot be ignored.


Without significant and URGENT sponsorship and support there is no light at the end of the tunnel. There is nowhere else to send the animals and by the end of the year the HSPCA will not be able to accept any more animals for treatment or kennelling.

Their newly formed Fundraising Committee is endeavouring to raise funds for the ever increasing number of animals coming through the HSPCA doors. Please help them as much as you can. We simply cannot give up hope.

The following are the Harare SPCA Bank details:


Deposits :  Branch number  2199   Account number  1012419
Internet Banking:           Account number  099 101 2419
Ecocash:     #06326

E mail   : or SMS 0712211900 giving your name and transaction reference for our records.

It may be worth emailing to confirm the bank details etc to prevent any chance of fraud.

HSPCA would like to sincerely thank their supports and donors who contribute and offer assistance in terms of cash or kind and assist on a voluntary basis.


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Is Mugabe Dead?

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Rumours are rife that Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe has died. The Zimbabwean tyrant took off early from a key summit of African nations on Tuesday before flying to Singapore where the President has been before for medical treatment. However, the presidential jet made a sharp turn, rerouting for Dubai in the United Arab Emirates as his health rapidly deteriorated, Zimbabwe Newsday reported.

The 92 year old President’s spokesman refused to deny rumours that Mugabe was ill, further fuelling speculation that he had infact died. Now opposition leaders are calling for the old leader, who has held power since 1980, to stand down from his role.

Mugabe is still apparently holed up in a Dubai hospital, however, there’s no official comment on his condition. Claims that he had suffered a brain haemorrhage were ruled out by a family member, who told Zimbabwe Newsday he’d gone for a routine checkup. That said, we are not sure if this report can be believed or not.

The same website described rumours of Mugabe’s death as far-fetched, but conceded that the events surrounding his current movements made it a strong possibility.

Spokesman George Charamba told reporters: “Each time you people don’t know the purpose of the president’s visit, there is always a default explanation that he is ill. “If I don’t tell you the purpose, it should be illness. I will not give you the purpose of the president’s visit to run away from the default explanation. “This is not new. It is year in, year out; he is sick, he dies and resurrects. His life until the age of 92 revolves around illness and death.” I think it has been some time since Mugabe was reported as very ill so this is again, not exactly true but then you would expect a normal 92-year-old person to be not very healthy.

I think it has been some time since Mugabe was reported as very ill so this is again, not exactly true but then you would expect a normal 92-year-old person to be in and out of health.

A government official quoted by New Zimbabwe said the tyrant’s sudden flight was down to a long-term battle with prostate cancer. Yet another source reported he was picking up family en-route to Singapore, and another said he was in the Middle East on private business.

It is a bit odd that the infamous dictator’s overseas treatment trips have caused a storm among opposition leaders back in Zimbabwe, considering that he has probably racked up the most air miles of any human being, dead or alive.

It is interesting that after running down Zimbabwe’s health care system to the point he himself needs to travel overseas to get treatment.

A spokesman for opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said Mugabe’s numerous foreign travels were already a serious burden for the treasury. They said: “In as much as we sympathise with Mugabe over his health problems, we urge him to search his soul and conscience.” I think it is a bit late and extremely unlikely that a ruthless, murderous Dictator has spent and nor will ever spend any time searching his soul or conscience.

“He must see that in his current physical shape and going towards 93, it is not good to cling desperately onto power.”

We shall wait and see over the next few days what transpires but we do know that the Zanu PF party will try and keep his death a secret if it is true to prevent any sudden uprising, especially considering all the recent riots and civil unrest especially #thisflag