African Wild Dogs return

February 10, 2008

When African wild dogs reappeared in the Maasai owned dispersal area of Nairobi National Park late in 2006, there was great excitement in the scientific community who had not seen these highly endangered predators in perhaps 20 years. The wild dogs have been roaming far and wide and accurate counts are hard to come by, but there are now approximately 25 wild dogs in the Nairobi NP dispersal area and then perhaps another 25 farther away in the region. The wild dogs, as is their nature, have been eating wild game, but also lots of domestic sheep and goats, so funding is desperately needed for the Predator Consolation Program to help compensate the Maasai livestock owners for their losses. The Friends of Nairobi Nat. Park (FoNNaP) are now managing this important wildlife conservation program.

Lions are also making back gains from their low point in 2003. A pride of 13 was recently seen in Nairobi NP and another pride of 6, including the big male “Ujongo” was also observed. This pride includes 2 adult lionesses and at least 3 adorable cubs approximately 10 months old. Two other adult males are now outside the Park to the southwest. At Hippo Pools which is located on the open southern Park boundary, a crocodile killed a cow and another croc killed a calf that had come down to the Empakasi River to drink. Welcome to the wilds in Nairobi’s back yard. Thanks to the recent large prescribed burn by the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), hundreds of zebra are in the Park and many have new foals. Also spotted lately have been hartebeest, eland, wildebeest, waterbucks and giraffe in large numbers. Please help our worthy conservation efforts and the Maasai people who make it all possible.

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