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The Queens of the Jungle

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South Africa - Carol Khosa (left) 26, pictured during a foot patrol at Balule Nature Reserve. A mother of two, Khosa started working as a Mamba in order to economically support her family. “From the outside this seems like a very cool job, but in reality it is extremely hard” she explains. “It is physically very tiring and it keeps us away from our families for a long time.”Numuntu Mokgakane (right) is one of the Mambas stationed at the Olifants West gate, within the Balule Nature Reserve. “I would have liked to study nursing or office management, but my family could not afford to send me to school” she explains. Numuntu has a 4-yeard-old daughter and comes from one of the many poor villages surrounding the Kruger National Park, where most of the poachers come from as well. “It is a way to make quick money. Some do it just to support their families, because there are no other economic opportunities in the area”, she explains.