Over R400 000 was raised to replace Kruger's ailing CyberTracker hardware with the new Fujitsu Siemens Pocket PC Loox N520 handheld device. "With this new technology in place, Kruger is now able to take full advantage of the latest range of improved features in the updated CyberTracker 3.x software version including the "Moving Map", which will ensure our rangers are able to navigate their way effortlessly in the field," says Sandra MacFadyen, project manager, Geographic Information/Decision Support Systems in the Kruger National Park.
Sandra says thanks to the generous donations by GTZ (1999), Erna Goodwin estate (2002), Halewood International (July 2006), Thubelisha Homes (November 2006), Fujitsu-Siemens (February 2007); Sanparks Honorary Rangers: Ranger Support Services (March 2007), Sanparks special projects (July 2007) as well as over 40 members of the public (2006-2007) through their online support pages, the CyberTracker upgrades will be operational in all 22 of Kruger's ranger sections as well as the scientific services division within the next few months.
"Sanparks would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who supported this initiative; your contributions are greatly appreciated." The Kruger National Park's (KNP) CyberTracker programme has been widely publicised on www.sanparks.org as well as in the Kruger Park Times.
The CyberTracker System is a handheld computer software application designed for use in environmental conservation and wildlife biology as a data-capture tool. While this software is free, the handheld computers/mobile devices are not.
According to Sandra this technology is essential for the efficient management and research of not only Kruger but the whole of Sanparks. CyberTracker training was therefore recently conducted in Addo National Park and Kimberley for Sanparks rangers and researchers from Addo, Mountain Zebra, Tsitsikama, Wilderness, Karoo and other national parks. Consequently, while Kruger's fundraising quota has been filled, any assistance offered to help equip the other smaller parks with the same technology, would be welcomed.