Day 2: What Can Researchers Do To Save the Savannah?

Between water shortages, erosion, and human population growth, the ecosystem and the animals of Kenya face serious risks

Migratory animals such as elephants cover long distances over both public and private lands. (Smithsonian Institution)

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We continue to build our animal count, adding baboon (seen in a troupe of around 50 or 60), leopard tortoise, spotted hyena, golden jackal, waterbuck, common zebra, and Grant’s gazelle.

There are also opportunities to see giraffes, including family groups. These are reticulated giraffes with clearly defined brown spots outlined by white. The young giraffes are curious and arch their heads over trees to see what we are up to. When the parents leave, the youngsters linger a few minutes and then lope off to catch up. The mature giraffes are very graceful for such large and ungainly creatures. They have a remarkable ability to reach and eat the small green leaves that grow between long, sharp thorns on man of the trees and shrubs of the region.

Our game drive comes to an end with the approaching dusk and we return to the ranch for dinner and conversation about what we have seen and discussed that day. The day ends with our first night of solid rest as the jet lag wears off a bit.


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