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February 18, 2014
We’ve pulled into a rest stop, probably one of only a few in the entire Ngorogoro Conservation Area. I saw a few large elephants on the way in, larger and closer than I’ve seen so far, so while the others are inside, I’m darting about the carpark, hoping to catch sight of the magnificent creatures.
And then I see them. Gray shapes slowly moving through a grove of trees, delicately feeding. It’s impossible to count how many there are as they wend their way through the vegetation–now you see them, now you don’t. I would guess about eight mothers and calves, but I never see all of them at one time, so it’s hard to say. For something so big they are very good at hiding.
They’re obviously a group. There is some dimension of communication happening that I can’t tune in on, but it doesn’t matter. They know what they are doing. They’ve been doing it for so long now.
The young ones sometimes do the adorable things that young elephants do; sometimes the mothers respond, sometimes they are ignored.
As I stand and watch, what I see before me seems almost like a staged drama, so graceful and precise are the movements of these huge animals as they feed. An elephant drama, played to an elephant script, in elephant time.
And then, slowly, they are gone. I can’t quite see where they went, but they are definitely not here any more.
On the way back to camp I wonder if I saw real animals, or was it just ghosts?
Let’s make this the play that never ends. Contribute to:
Terrorists Are Targeting Africa’s Elephants
A KWS ranger was Monday night shot dead by suspected poachers after an exchange of fierce fire as the latter tried to forcefully gain entry into Ol-Jogi ranch in a rhino hunting mission.
The 25-year-old Paul Harrison Lelesepei was in company of other rangers guarding the rhino sanctuary when they were attacked by the poachers.
Confirming the incident, KWS senior warden in charge of Mt. Kenya region, Aggrey Maumo, said that the rangers were patrolling the ranch along the borderline adjacent to the Lol-daiga hills when they were ambushed by the poachers.
Maumo said that a gun fight ensued and it was then that the ranger was caught in the crossfire; he later succumbed to the bullet wound as he was being rushed to the Nanyuki Teaching and Referral Hospital.
The body was taken to Nanyuki hospital mortuary.
He noted that on the fateful night there were two groups of poachers in the region, one group had already gained access into the ranch while the other was still outside, the rangers, without the knowledge of another group inside, opened fire to the group outside, with both groups returning fire, thus sandwiching the rangers.
However, the rangers still managed to overwhelm the antagonists, who beat a hasty retreat; no arrest have been made so far though there are some potential leads that could lead to the arrest of the notorious gang.
Maumo further said that all rhino sanctuaries in Laikipia have become a target for poachers, with Ol-Jogi being the worst hit, already having five rhinos killed in the past six months.
Last week, KWS wildlife conservation deputy director, Robert Njue, noted that rhino poaching will be countered using all security arsenal available and urged the public to volunteer intelligence report that can lead to arrest of poachers.
Njue said that they have deployed rangers to all sanctuaries in the region to counter poaching activities, adding that the fight against poaching also includes all security personnel; including police, Kenya policereservists and community rangers.
What makes an Elephant so special?
The scientists have compared the emotional intelligence of an Elephant to a child. They grieve for the loss of their loved ones just as we humans do.
It is saddening that for our ridiculous superficial wants we are on the verge of wiping off a majestic creature from the planet.
Is anybody doing anything?
How do they do it:
Rory Young has formed an alliance with Jacob Alekseyev, an American living in Zambia. Alekseyev is a former Major and Federal Agent of the US Air Force, Office of Special Investigations. Together they have worked out a plan of action to stop poaching in the Zambezi River Valley.
Website : http://chengetawildlife.o
Terrorists are equipping poachers with state of the art weaponry. So, everyday is a struggle for men who are trying to save an elephant from being hunted down.
There are hundreds of people like me all over the globe that have lent a helping hand and have associated to raise a voice for the cause. Let’s not underestimate the power of a collective.
The Elephant crisis demands a global movement!
It is okay to look away but stupid to believe that they are a concern of only a particular nation and people.