Fort Collins GPS units on patrol in Africa

A family-owned farm in Zimbabwe has outfitted its anti-poaching patrol with GPS tracking devices from Fort Collins’ Rocky Mountain Tracking Inc. to keep patrollers honest.

Rocky Mountain Tracking will ship 10 GPS tracking devices overseas to Howick Farms in Zimbabwe to monitor movements of its patrols, said Tom Baranowski, general manager for Rocky Mountain Tracking. The family-owned farm raises soy beans and tobacco.

The 10-member anti-poaching teams patrol on foot the farm’s remote and mountainous terrain on foot to thwart poachers near the town of Rusape, Zimbabwe. The personal tracking devices can record movements of patrollers for as many as 100 hours as they cover miles of isolated areas.

When the patrollers return, the farm’s owners can upload information from the tracking devices onto a computer so they can confirm the patrollers have done their jobs.

Howick Farms found Rocky Mountain Tracking’s website through an Internet search, he said.

“We have seen GPS devices used in many unique ways,” he said, “but this use, which ultimately helps protect endangered wildlife, is especially pleasing.”

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