|Meet Bruno, a much beloved member of our team in Akagera National Park in Rwanda. Bruno is a six-year-old Belgian Malinois and is one of seven dogs that have been highly trained to support the park’s critical anti-poaching work. Originating from Holland, and having undergone additional training in the United States, all the dogs respond to very simple, single word commands of Dutch origin. Bruno is the largest and strongest of all the dogs weighing in at 40 kgs, and is very protective of his handlers.
The K9 law enforcement team, which consists of the seven dogs and their 17 handlers, was launched in October 2015 after a seven-month training programme. These remarkable canines and their handlers conduct daily patrols in Akagera, and have helped in reducing poaching to an all-time low in the six years since African Parks has been managing the park in partnership with the Rwanda Development Board. Akagera is home to an astounding array of wildlife, including Rwanda’s only population of lions which were reintroduced back in 2015.
Find out more about how African Parks is protecting endangered wildlife and conserving more than six million hectares of wilderness across Africa at www.african-parks.org.