KENYA NOW HOLDS SADDEST RECORD IN GAME RELOCATION HISTORY AS 11TH RHINO ALSO DIES
(Posted 07th August 2018)
(The highly endangered Eastern Black rhino species of which Kenya over the past weeks lost a dozen animals, 11 from a failed relocation and one more from poaching)
The disastrous relocation of 11 rhinos from Lake Nakuru and Nairobi national parks – all of the animals have since died – is not the first such exercise gone wrong, as ATCNews.org in May 2015 reported the death of three Eastern Black rhinos (see article link below)
Whatever lessons should or could have been learned from the mistakes made three years ago, clearly were either not taken on board and incorporated or had been forgotten by the team responsible for the latest relocation, which in the process established a new world record for dead rhinos during a relocation.
KWS in a statement dated 26th of June had announced the planned relocation which was launched in the presence of Tourism and Wildlife Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala and top KWS management besides officials of the World Wide Fund for Nature, in short known as WWF which included the organization’s CEO Mohamed Awer.
During the ceremony did the chairman of KWS announce that an updated Eastern Black Rhino Conservation Strategy and Action Plan was to be launched in July, something which, given the spectacularly catastrophic failure of the relocation, did not happen and is now awaited with keen interest by the conservation fraternity – until now left bewildered and with a ton of unanswered questions given the quality of some of the official statements released to the public.
When the present mudslinging and shoutouts on social and regular media have began to reduce and the dust has started to settle over this affair will the time come that in the bright light of day the real story can be told.
The double relocation failure in the space of just three years must be analyzed calmly and conclusions then be drawn which lead to a new enhanced set of guidelines for such relocations – because relocations will be needed in the future, of rhinos and other species too.
For now it is a watch and wait situation to see when finally ranks will break and one or another, on or off the record, will start telling the story behind the story and give the conservation fraternity, in Kenya and around the world, the insight they demand to have into what really happened on the way to and inside Tsavo National Park.