Last time, I blogged about our recent excursion with 28 primary school students to Samburu and Buffalo Springs National Reserves. I wanted to share some photos to help illustrate the story. Enjoy!
[caption id="attachment_481" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The Grevy’s zebra project car drives past some Grant’s gazelles. The students and teachers were surprised that wild animals were not running away. Back home, the wild animals would have taken off fast due to harassment and poaching, which our project has been documenting."][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_480" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="We encountered a group of 55 Grevy’s zebras in Samburu Reserve. The students saw about 80 Grevy’s zebras in total during our game drive."][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_479" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Students watching elephants: for most of the students, this was their first encounter with elephants. This surprised me because I know the students come from areas inhabited by elephants."][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_485" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The region is so dry right now. The reserve management is having a rough time as they have to pay people to scoop sand along the dry river bend to create wells to sustain wild animals. "][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_478" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Students listen to talks from reserve management about the value of wildlife conservation. They also learnt about the plight of Grevy’s zebra from the Grevy’s zebra project staff. "][/caption]
I had not realized the significance of the trip until a ranger who has worked in Buffalo Springs since 1972 informed us that he has never seen students from Isiolo visiting the reserve. The ranger and other reserve staff hoped that members of the local community would visit the reserves more often so that they can appreciate wildlife conservation.
We might receive very many requests for such trips – We hope we will, we hope we can afford to have more trips, we believe with your support we can. We need to recruit more and more wildlife Guardians particularly among the young generation. If you'd like to help us get more children exposed to wildlife, please click here.
Next month, we will conduct a series of public awareness meetings discuss the conservation of Grevy’s zebras and other wild animals in Isiolo community areas adjacent to Buffalo Springs, Shaba and Samburu national reserves. We will also be counting Grevy’s zebra on community land and Samburu and Buffalo Springs national reserve so do not miss our updates as we continue guarding Grevy’s zebra.
Dr. Paul Muoria leads AWF’s Grevy’s Zebra research and conservation project in the Samburu Heartland of Kenya. A few decades ago, more than 15,000 Grevy’s zebras inhabited Africa. Today, less than 2,500 remain. Paul is fighting to turn this trend around. In a sea of stripes, Paul is working to identify and record each individual Grevy’s and to track their movements. Also, he is training scouts to help engage communities and safeguard these endangered zebras from marching towards extinction.
AWF Blogs bring you to the African Heartlands, where conservation benefits both wildlife and people alike. The blogs are written by our staff - men and women who have dedicated their lives to Africa's wildlife, people and wild lands.