Tharollo Mthisi

Tharollo was born and raised in Buffelshoek village in South Africa’s Mpumalanga province, adjacent to the iconic Kruger National Park. He started his career in conservation with the Protrack Company where he was trained and deployed as a member of the Anti-Poaching Unit’s Task Team. After two years of service, he joined the Knight Protection Services as a guard for their mining division. However, the African bush kept on calling and in December 2017 he the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s, in partnership with the Rainforest Trust, newly formed Soutpansberg Protected Area (SPA) as a Field Ranger. His key functions as a SPA Field Ranger is, to safeguard the reserve and its wildlife through regular patrols, supplies special information of a biological nature and is also tasked with reserve infrastructure maintenance. Tharollo enjoys exploring nature, running, cooking and playing soccer.

Khathutshelo Mukhumeni

Khathu was born in Zamenkomste village, at the foot of the Soutpansberg Mountain of South Africa’s Limpopo Province. In 2015, he started his working career as part of a reserve maintenance team for Leshiba Game Reserve, in the heart of the western Soutpansberg. In November 2017, he joined the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s, in partnership with the Rainforest Trust, newly formed Soutpansberg Protected Area (SPA) as a Field Ranger. As a SPA Field Ranger, Khathu is tasked with detecting and controlling illegal activities on the reserve, by means of regular patrolling . He also supplies special information of a biological nature as well as perform incidental tasks such as maintenance of infrastructure. Khathu enjoys hiking and playing sports such as soccer and cricket.

Pedro Us Pacheco

Pedro has been working with FUNDAECO for a year, but has been working in the forest for 20
years. He used to work with Philip Tanimoto (The Rainforest Trust GIS Officer) as a guide and
helped Philip in the field. Before becoming a field guide Pedro worked as a farmer.

Walter Elías Vicente Barrondo

Walter, is one of the forest guards for Fundaeco. Walter was born and raised in a family of
loggers, and when he was only 15 years old, he himself was one of the best loggers in his
community. However, after being invited to visit a nearby protected forest and meeting tourists
who had come to see the forests, he became amazed by the richness of the protected forest
and realized that he had taken his own cloud forest for granted.

Ruben Rivera Vázquez

Ruben is originally from Antiguo Morelos, Tamaulipas. He is currently monitoring parrots in the project “Protection of parrots in danger of extinction in Mexico” at the Rancho Regalo de Dios.

Jacob Adong

Jacob Adong use to be a hunter and trapper. He started hunting at the age of 18, going to the bush with dogs, trapping, chasing and killing animals like cane rats, porcupines, and many others. In December 1993, he later started using guns to hunt larger animals like monkeys, duiker and bush pigs. Little did he know some of these animals have been declared as protected species until he came in contact with ERuDeF in 2004. After that encounter with ERuDeF, Jacob became a wildlife conservation advocate in his community, Bechati, and he is currently working as a field guide and a community ranger in the Tofala Hill Wildlife Sanctuary.

Solomon Tayim

Tankoh Solomon Tayim was born in the Besali village adjacent to the Tofala Hill Wildlife Sanctuary. He dropped out from secondary school when his father died. As the first male child in his family, it was his responsibility to take care of and support his mother and siblings. It was from this situation that he got involved with the trapping and hunting of animals such as cane rats, porcupine, duikers and bush pig. He also engaged in the cultivation of cocoa and palm to generate income for his family. In 2010 he came in contact with ERuDeF during community sensitizations on the creation of the Tofala Hill Wildlife Sanctuary. He then became involved in the conservation project as a bio-monitor and he is currently working as a field guide and community ranger in the Tofala Hill Wildlife Sanctuary.

Segundo Baldomiro Balcazar Becerra

Segundo started his job with Fundación Jocotoco on November 21, 2001. When he started to work for Jocotoco, he built the first trails and collaborated in the creation of nest boxes and bird monitoring. The species he likes the most is the El Oro parakeet.

Jiba Magwaza

Jiba lives in kwaNdengezi, Durban, South Africa. He has a BSc degree in Geography and Environmental Management from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and a Diploma in Project management. Jiba is responsible for coordinating and carrying out much of the social engagement, sustainable development and environmental education necessary for Endangered Wildlife Trust’s work towards protecting the extensive Adam’s Mission wetlands south of Durban. He is a mentor to our Biodiversity Protection Officers who patrol the area and engage with local community members. He has a keen interest in the field of bioacoustics, which is a tool Endangered Wildlife Trust uses to monitor flagship endangered species. His career objective is to grow an outstanding career in the field of environmental management and community development and be able to offer practical solutions to environmental challenges that modern society is faced with, as well to improve the livelihoods of people in both rural and urban areas.

Leon Bitterbos

Leon Bitterbos has two children, a boy and a girl, whom he works to support. Leon is a hard-working person and good with chainsaws, which he uses to clear alien invasives from the reserve.