Efficient barrier

Apart from vigilant protection of the state border Belarusian border guards are actively involved in the struggle against poachers.

Those who called in to guard borders and those who protect the environment work round the clock. And often they closely cooperate. A good tradition is joint air raids of officers of the State Inspectorate on Wildlife Protection and those of border guards aimed at detection and prevention of the environmental legislation violations at the frontier zone.

The start to this cooperation was given by the action plan on enhanced cooperation signed by the Chief of the State Inspectorate Mikhail Areshko and the Chairman of the Border Guard State Committee Igor Rachkovski. According to this document, officers of both agencies exchange operating data and conduct joint raids.

Who else is awake?

At the time of the spring fishing ban during spawning such contacts get still closer. It is much easier to oppose poaching together than to fight it on its own. It is especially true at spring which is characterized by spate of poaching at water bodies and streams.

This year at the beginning of May servicemen of mobile border guard posts, when on duty, detected people who were taking out fish from nets at Lake Zavidovskoye in the Dobrush district. Three violators with illegal catch were detained and officials of the Gomel Region Inspectorate on Wildlife Protection were called to the scene. Inspectors took out of the water body 90 meters long nets with fish. Altogether poachers caught 163 fish; the damage caused to nature was estimated at 98 base amounts. The Dobrush Department of Internal Affairs opened a criminal case.

During a joint raid of the Mozyr Inter-District Inspectorate and the Mozyr border command post officers a man was detained who, at the time of the ban, was fishing at Lake Obod of the Mozyr district. 39 fish and illegal fishing gear – 120 meters long nets– were seized. Damaged caused to fishery resources was estimated at 50 base amounts. The Prosecutor’s office of the Mozyr district opened a criminal case.

Guilty on all accounts...

Servicemen of the Pinsk border guard troop detained a resident of Ukraine who illegally had penetrated the territory of Belarus. The resident of the Zarechanski district of the Rovno region had penetrated the Belarusian border deliberately. He had come with a concrete goal – to hunt illegally.

The border guards caught the poacher with a rifle and a wild boar underyearling which had been illegally obtained. They drew up reports for illegal crossing of the border, smuggling, and violation of hunting and game husbandry management regulations. The weapon and its ammunition were seized and their owner was put into a temporary detention facility till all the facts of the case are clarified.

They see everything from above!

At the beginning of May a border guards MI-8 helicopter took off with the Chief of the Mozyr Inter-District Inspectorate on Wildlife Protection, Vladimir Logimakhov, and the Chief of the mobile frontier post Sergei Tushinski aboard. Along with other tasks it was planned to once again inspect the territory under the jurisdiction of the Mozyr Inter-District Inspectorate. The route ran along the Pripyat through the Mozyr, Elsk and Lelchitsk districts.

“Near-border air patrolling together with border guards is conducted regularly,” – noted Vladimir Logimakhov. Having heard the approaching helicopter poachers immediately try to hide somewhere, as at any minute inspectors can appear. From the air it is much easier than from the earth to see where nets were put, to detect hunters in the forest and identify wood cutting and storing sites. All these sites are put on a map and later are checked. In case of a clear breach of law the order is given to interfere.

During this flight such orders were sent to the ground more than once. Inspectors and border guards hurried on a motorboat to the specified area and took appropriate measures. On that day they through combined efforts detected and seized 20 illegally put fishing nets more than 400 meters long, naturally with fish.

Besides, during this inspection big forest fires coming from the Ukrainian side and burning of peat lands along the state border were detected. This information was promptly passed to Elsk and Lelchitsk district forestry to take fire-preventive measures.

The air raid allowed efficient detection and registration of wild animals gathering spots. It is known that poachers are keen to get to such places. Flying over the territory of Polleski radiological ecological reserve and bordering territories the raid participants detected nine wild boar sounders (10-15 species in each) as well as around ten solitary boars. 11 elk habitats were registered. It is a proof that animals live in Polesye which means that thorough supervision on the part of inspectors is required.