Light aircraft transported to Virunga National Park to help protect endangered wildlife
Our Belgian and African teams have co-ordinated the transportation of a Zenith 701 light aircraft to the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The operation was carried out on behalf of the park and employee Anthony Caere, the star of Belgian TV Show ‘Flying Doctors’ which recently documented his journey as he piloted a Cessna 172 aircraft to the Virunga park all the way from Ostend, Belgium.
This time though, the Zenith 701 was dismantled in Senegal, where our teams arranged for it to be transported via 3 x scheduled MD11 legs to Entebbe International Airport, via Frankfurt and Johannesburg. Our cargo team provided a full transport service – managing complex customs procedures and delivering the aircraft on schedule and in a total transit time of less than 5 days.
The 701 is a remarkable aircraft, capable of taking off and landing on runways as small as 100m. It also uses only 15 litres of regular automotive fuel per hour, making it five times cheaper to operate than the parks existing Cessna.
The Virunga Park is a 3000 square mile nature reserve, home to a diverse range of flora and fauna including Elephants, Lions, Hippopotami and the critically endangered Mountain Gorilla. Having endured many periods of armed conflict, the park and it’s inhabitants have faced their fair share of problems in the past, but the animal population’s greatest concern is the ongoing and persistent threat of poaching.
The light aircraft will be used to assist the park’s 680 rangers in their efforts to protect and care for Virunga’s wildlife, carrying out aerial patrols, tracking, logistics and evacuations.
Images courtesy of Virunga National Park
Wannes Elias, Cargo Charter Broker at our Belgium office comments:
“It was a huge privilege to be involved in this project, not only because it was an interesting one, but also because we have helped to get an aircraft to the park that will play a major, long term role in protecting endangered species”