The IAPF in Vietnam

The IAPF recently embarked on a journey to Vietnam. We travelled there to gain a better understanding and perspective on the use of Traditional Vietnamese Medicine (TVM).

Our main focus of the trip was not only the use of rhino horn but the culture and beliefs in all Traditional Vietnamese Medicine.

Stay tuned in the coming week for a series of video blogs about the trip as we try to uncover some of the truth and myths about TVM. Tune into to our youtube channel or alternatively watch this blog space.

Encounters of the ‘LARGE’ kind

The “Big Five”. So called because they were apparently the most difficult and dangerous African mammals to hunt. Nowadays, things have changed slightly but they still remain some of the most difficult to conserve.

Here on the Stanley and Livingstone Game Reserve (SALGR) we’ve had our fair share of “Big Five” encounters lately. Lions roaring almost every night and recent sightings of brand new cubs, the buffalo herd exploding in numbers after the rains, a very cheeky elephant nicknamed “kloppers” by the rangers, an old tom leopard who occasionally allows you a glimpse as he slinks back into the bush and of course, our resident rhinos.

It’s these experiences, exciting and often heart stopping at the same time, which keeps us doing what we do. It’s not just the famous species that need protecting though. In order to save one, you have to work from the ground up. Literally. That’s why this is a very important time for us out here. Once the rains stop and the temperature begins to drop, we enter a new season and a have to tackle a new threat… wild fires. Grading the roads, controlling erosion and making sure that our fire guards are well maintained is a big part of the work that needs to be done in the coming months. Uncontrolled fires can have a huge detrimental effect on a property such as this one. They spread quickly through the dry grass, removing food sources for the game and exposing the soil to the harsh sun and winds. This can lower the quality and quantity of next year’s growth and it may be years before we’re able to restore things to the natural balance needed. No soil equals no plants, which equals no animals. It’s as simple as that.


We’ve progressed well with our vegetation study, and now it’s time to put some of that work into action. We couldn’t have done this of course without help from all of our volunteers to whom we owe huge thanks. Their hard work and dedication has allowed us to thrive and continue on with our goals. So from the IAPF, the SALGR staff and all the animals here in the bush, thank you.

You can keep up to date on everything happening at the IAPF through this blog. For those of you who would like more information on the Green Army program or want to make a commitment, please head over to our website or email or Come and join us, and see what all the excitement is about for yourself.

James Slade

Game Ranger & Green Army co-ordinator

The IAPF are proudly supported in Zimbabwe by:

IAPF Fundraisers

The IAPF has a number of fundraising events taking place in the month of April.  If you’re in the area, then we urge you to come along and show your support.

Firstly, on the 19thof April at the Yacht Club de Monaco,  we will host ‘Rocking for Rhinos,’ a fundraiser for much needed funds for ‘Conservation Guardians’ a conservation initiative between IAPF, and Men of Trees.

Rocking for Rhinos

The event will feature auctions of various rhino artwork and memorabilia, in particular a Larry Norton original painting named,  ‘2016’.

The painting is a picture of a pair of black rhinos on top of the Chizarira escarpment, part of Chizarira National Park. This is significant as Black rhino have been locally extinct in that area for nearly 20 years.

“Chizarira 2016, Mother and Child”

The plan is to turn the painting into a reality with IAPF, in conjunction with the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, set to resurrect the aging park and restore it to its former glory.  This includes the re-introduction of black rhino into the park over the coming years.

For more information on the fundraiser head to the Conservation Guardians blog.

On Friday the 19th of April, the IAPF is holding it’s first ever fundraising event in Zimbabwe. The black tie event will be held at the Mystique Function Centre in Bulawayo.

The focus of the fundraising dinner is Chizarira National Park. We have acquired two Land rovers,  4×4’s that are in a state of disrepair. The funds raised will go into re-conditioning one, if not both vehicles, so they can be used in anti-poaching operations in the area

Bulawayo fundraiser

Local Zimbabwean favourites ‘The Chikenbus Band’ will be entertaining the crowd and there will also be the auctioning of various pieces for the cause.

Tickets are $65. For more information or bookings contact Kirsty from Gardens and Events

From all of us at the IAPF have a Happy Easter and hopefully we will see you at one of the events!

RAW Family Fundraising Family Music Festival

After 12 months of hard work from a dedicated group of committee members back home in Australia, Raw 2012 went live last Sunday, March 18. Held at Morningstar Estate on the Mornington Peninsula in Melbourne, the aim of the event was to raise much needed awareness and financial support in aid of the International Anti-Poaching Foundation. Over 1200 people attended the event throughout the day to watch a great line up of bands. Local artists such as Lash 78, Matt Mc Hugh, Jeff Lang and the Fireballs entertained everyone on the lawn all afternoon, and of course, who could forget crowd favourite, Dallas Frasca who was back for her second year in a row.

RAW 2012

With the weather sitting pretty on 26 degrees the committee sighed with relief, unable to predict what the Melbourne sky is capable of. The new venue was perfect for the event and the huge variety of kid’s activities allowed the parents to relax for the afternoon and enjoy the tunes.

From me: to the committee, I can’t thank-you enough. I had only turned up in Australia a few days before hand and everything had been put together. All I had to do was turn up to the event and enjoy the afternoon, chatting to the crowd about our valuable work towards conservation. To the sponsors and volunteers – The event would not be possible without you. Thanks so much again. And saving the best until last – THE CROWD. Thank-you to everyone that came down, enjoyed the music, supported the cause and had a great day with a likeminded group of people.

We hope to see everyone throughout the year. Please keep following the IAPF’s work at

If you haven’t signed up yet to receive our regular blog then please do so in the top right hand section of this page.

Cheers everyone.

Damien Mander

IAPF in the media

As the poaching epidemic that has gripped the planet increases at an alarming rate, more awareness needs to be raised about how critical the situation is on the ground.

However, in a day and age when news and information can be transmitted so quickly, across so many different formats, there is potential for stories to become distorted or misreported. It is therefore the aim of the IAPF to get the correct facts to the right people, which allow them to report accurately on the situation.

The key to winning this war is awareness. The media is one of the best tools that the conservation community has in it arsenal.

Here are some of the latest articles about the IAPF’s activities. I urge you to share these with you friends so we can involve more people in the struggle.

Damien Mander on Channel Ten’s ‘The Project’

If you manage to miss it, or for our overseas supporters, Click here to see the interview in full.

IAPF feature in “Rhino Wars” National Geographic article

“The rifle shot boomed through the darkening forest just as Damien Mander arrived at his campfire after a long day training game ranger recruits in western Zimbabwe’s Nakavango game reserve” 

The IAPF is featured in the March 2012 issue of National Geographic, in an article entitled Rhino Wars.

Voice of America radio interview with Damien Mander

Special Forces operative teaches military tactics to wildlife rangers Jan 30, 2012 Online article and Radio Interview with Damien Mander on Voice of America – heard daily by 123 million people in 44 countries, VoA is one of the worlds biggest radio networks. Click here to listen to the interview

Green Army – The IAPF on Aljazeera – November 12, 2011

One of the world biggest and most respected news network Al Jazeera travelled to Zimbabweto film a feature story about the IAPF’s fight to save the black rhino and their Green Army of Rangers

Never work with children or animals!

A Pangolin’s Life

Tomorrow, February 18th, is World Pangolin day. What is a Pangolin you ask?

Pangolins are found throughout Africa & Asia. They have a very particular diet of ants and termites –this makes it very difficult to take care of these animals in captivity.

These shy, fragile creatures are being poached at an alarming rate, for the same reasons as the rhino, but their plight gets little to no coverage in the media.

A Pangolin

They are sold on the Asian black market primarily for human consumption but also for use in various Chinese medicines. There has nevr been any scientific proof that the medicinal uses of the pangolin actually work – yet the poaching continues.

TheTikki Hywood Trust, has been operationing in Zimbabwe since 1994 and has championed the cause of lesser known endangered species of animals, as well as worked tirelessly for the plight of all of Zimbabwe’s wildlife. At its inception, the Trust worked to bring recognition to endangered and specially protected animal species such as Cape Pangolin, Lichtenstein’s Hartebeest, Southern African Hedgehog and many others. As a result, successful breeding and release programs were established with respect to these species throughout Zimbabwe, as well as a main centre based in the country’s capital, Harare. During these early years of the Foundation’s work, hand rearing techniques and artificial milk formulas relevant to each species were developed for orphans that came to the facility, and rehabilitation and release was done wherever possible. However, as the socio-economic and political situation degraded in Zimbabwe, the emphasis of the Foundation became more and more a crisis management. Rescuing animals from persecution and relocating numbers of animals where possible to save them from decimation became a priority. Hand in hand with this however, came the realisation that the legislation in place was no longer an effective deterrent or protection for animal welfare, and so the Foundation undertook a campaign to improve this.

World Pangolin Day

From small and species-specific beginnings, we are now expanding the scope of our work so that we can ensure the safe release of captive bred animals, ensure the protection of existing wildlife in situ through co-ordinated anti-poaching units, rehabilitate and release orphaned or injured wildlife and bring the Zimbabwean people back to a position of respect and pride in their greatest national heritage through awareness and education.

The Tikki Hywood Trust and the IAPF shares common goals in anti-poaching. They provide funding for equipment and training for units in Zimbabwe with the THW Trust focusing on the Eastern highlands of Zimbabwe. Lisa has been a staunch supporter of the IAPF since it’s inception with ongoing support and guidance.

For more information on the Tikki Hywood Trust head to

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