Rhinos Have Returned to Central Kenya, Excitement for Environmentalists

The return of several rhinoceroses to an area where they haven’t been for a long time is being celebrated by conservationists in Kenya. With enough room to breed, the 21 eastern black rhinos that were successfully relocated to a new home may contribute to the population growth of these critically endangered creatures. This was Kenya’s largest rhino relocation to date. The rhinos were moved from three parks that were getting too crowded to the private Loisaba Conservancy, where poachers had long before exterminated all of the rhinos. The rhinos needed eighteen days to move. The rhinos were being followed by conservationists in a helicopter. They then used specialized weapons to shoot the hundreds of kilogram-weight animals, injecting them with tranquilizer.

 

Almost immediately after the move, disaster hit. A rhino that had been sedated tumbled into a tiny river. In order to save the rhino from drowning, officials involved in the rescue kept its head above water with a rope while a medication that reversed the sedative took effect. After that, the animal was let go.

 

A few rhinoceroses were removed from the Nairobi National Park. They had three hundred kilometers to go. Some arrived from two parks nearer Loisaba. Rhinos need huge territories and tend to stay alone. Wildlife authorities made the decision to relocate some of the animals to Loisaba due to an increase in population in three parks. They anticipate that the rhinos will be more content and inclined to procreate. David Ndere works for the Kenya Wildlife Service and specializes in rhinos. According to him, when rhinos are densely populated in a territory, their reproductive rates drop. “We anticipate that the rhino population in those areas will increase as a result of the removal of some animals,” Ndere stated. The original population of at least 20 animals is then reintroduced into new locations.

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