Earlier this week our partners the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) and the Ruko Community Rangers moved all of the smaller animals off Longicharo Island. Due to the rising water, the smaller animals on the island had begun to starve as their dry land was slowly being submerged by the water and their food sources along with it. Longicharo Island was originally a peninsular and was approximately 100 acres in size, there is now only 8 acres of land left… Insufficient for all the wildlife which was trapped on the island.
1 female ostrich, 3 impalas and 11 warthogs were safely captured by the team on the ground using nets, before being translocated from the island inside crates or on the boats, to the mainland. Once on the mainland, they were released into Ruko Community Wildlife Conservancy where the habitats perfect, and food is abundant thanks to the recent rains. It was a major relief for all on the ground to have relocated these animals, as they were incredibly skinny and weak. Not only where they starving but they were also being hunted by some very clever crocodiles who had worked out that they could find an easy supper on the island!
Originally there had been three ostriches; two females and a male. Sadly the male and one female died a few weeks ago – most probably due to starvation or disease. One of the females had previously survived being grabbed by a crocodile (you can see the scratches from the attack on the ostrich’s legs in this photo), but had luckily managed to escape…. A tough few weeks for them.
The ostriches were Asiwa’s buddies – Asiwa is the lonely giraffe trapped on the lower part of the island. All of the giraffe including Asiwa are healthy and are being monitored daily and we at Save Giraffes Now are working around closely with our collaborators KWS, NRT and Ruko to move the giraffe as soon as we can. We are hoping that the second phase of the move, which includes the giraffe, will happen late November / early December this year.
Much of this incredible footage shows just how the giraffe will be moved once they are on the barge. This is the beginning of re-introducing free-ranging endangered #Rothschild giraffe into northern Kenya. A huge step and one that we at #SaveGiraffesNow are happy to be a part of!
“Ruko Update – A New Beginning” was written by Sarah Davies, Africa Communications Manager