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Why we celebrate World Ranger Day

March 30, 2023

Every day Rangers risk their lives to protect wildlife and wild places across the globe. Every year on 31 July, we pause to remember the Fallen Rangers who have died defending the natural world.

On 31st July, The Thin Green Line Foundation invites you stand with the World’s Rangers – remember Fallen Rangers, and honour the men and women on the frontline of conservation.

More than 150 Rangers lose their lives in the line of duty each year. Over 1,000 Rangers have been killed in the last decade.

Poachers and other illegal hunters and loggers are a major threat to Rangers along with militia groups challenging authorities in many different regions. Working in remote areas poses many risks to the selfless men and women protecting wild places. Fatal accidents from vehicle accidents on poor roads, drownings patrolling river areas, and firefighting have all contributed to the toll of lives lost this year.

Rangers also face danger from the wild life they strive to protect. Many rangers in Asia and Africa have been killed attempting to move wild elephants away from villages where the animals have been crop–raiding. Tigers have killed several forest rangers as a result of accidental encounters.

Violent confrontations from local people trespassing national parks and protected areas to graze their livestock or to harvest timber for fuel have also contributed to ranger fatalities this year.

Deaths from diseases including malaria and dengue fever have been common in previous years. This year several rangers have succumbed to Covid-19.

Rangers are conscious of the dangers they face. From one patrol to the next they remain undeterred in their commitment to protecting Nature. Training and equipment are essential to reduce the annual number of fatalities. Providing these vital resources are key parts of The Thin Green Line Foundation’s mission.

World Ranger Day 31st July is a day for the global Ranger community to remember Fallen Ranger colleagues and also to celebrate and take pride in the tireless work they do every day of the year.

This year we are inviting people to

  • Post a message acknowledging our conservation heroes.
  • Post pictures on social media holding the World Ranger Day sign. Find Printable signs and social media frames here.
  • Share pictures and messages on the International Ranger Federation (IRF) and The Thin Green Line social media using the hashtags:


Donations to support the families of Fallen Rangers can be made directly to The Thin Green Line Foundation donation portal.

Please join me and global Ranger family and stand with the World’s Rangers on 31st July.

Sean Willmore,

Founder & Managing Director
Thin Green Line

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We believe the practical, direct action of rangers is the most necessary and effective way to overcome the environmental challenges of our time. Thin Green Line is a global not-for-profit conservation organisation.