As poaching decimates wildlife populations across Africa, heroic people are stepping up to intervene – including the Black Mambas, the world’s first women’s only anti-poaching unit, who patrol and protect South Africa’s Balule Nature Reserve.
Through their surveillance and sophisticated monitoring techniques, the Mambas are the first line of defence in the war against poaching – but unlike the armed units who work alongside them, these incredible women are completely unarmed, patrolling 20km on foot each day to ensure the reserve’s wildlife is protected. The Mambas believe the poaching crisis will not be solved through violence, but instead through empowerment and education, and their commitment to the cause is inspiring.
This episode of Wild Lives was recorded live in Balule, where we go on both night and morning patrols with Black Mamba rangers Mirren, Q and Goodness. Their strength, humility and determination will give you hope for wildlife – and us.
Check out the episode on:
Please note: A large part of this episode was recorded in the field, so the sound can be patchy in places. The night-patrol audio is particularly challenging, because we’re driving through the bush in an open 4WD, so you’ll hear a little bit of distortion due to wind, along with bouncy car suspension, etc. The worst bits of audio are in the section from around 11:00 to 16:35. BUT I know you’ll be able to ignore those iffy bits because what these women have to say is solid gold!