By Jacob Ng’etich
Grazing in the lush and dense thicket at the hills of Parpeles that overlook the Lewa Ranch in Laikipia County are two white endangered rhinoceros.
The carcass of Omni their third companion throws a pungent smell near the Il Ngwesi Community Conservancy’s unattended airstrip.
Omni, the only black rhino succumbed to injuries sustained from a poisoned spear stab on its back within the conservancy a month ago in what swirls anger in the villagers.
According to Head of Security Njeman Portoi at the Il Ngwesi Omni ran down growling unlike other days but they did not anticipate that it had been attacked.
“It was unusual but we thought maybe he was angry; little did we know that the orphan rhino donated by the Lewa Conservancy had been hurt in an poaching attacked,” said Mr Portoi. The Head of Security said poachers who hoped they would overpower it and bring it down after spearing it with a poisoned spear.
“The animal that was friendly with human beings due to its upbringing at Lewa Conservancy, made it to the lower grounds just on time to be noticed before it died, it’s ivory was however intact,” said Portoi.
According to Mr Gabriel Nyausi, Greater Sera Region Coordinator, Northern Rangeland Trust (NRT), the 14-year-old bull had spent over 10 years at Il Ngwesi, its natural habitat after it was translocated from Lewa in 2002, and its presence was symbolic to the residence of Il Ngwesi, being among the only three rhinos to live on the land since the 1970s.
“It was sad that the poachers killed it when it had adapted to its natural habitat and was giving the residents hope of a possible increase in the herd, the old people say there were hundreds in the region before the 1970s,” said Nyausi. More....