In a first for Kenya, a white giraffe has been spotted in the little known Ishaqbini Hirola Conservancy in Garissa County. I mean who knew that white giraffes existed let alone a wildlife conservancy in Garissa. The conservancy also known as Ishaqbini Community Sanctuary is an endangered wild life conservation site is better known for its effort to protect the Hirola antelope which is one of the most endangered antelope species in the world. The number of antelopes in the sanctuary has so far reached a 100 showing that the efforts of those who run the sanctuary are bearing fruit. This number is up from just 48 in 2012 when the sanctuary was first established by the Somali Abdallah group that lives in the area.
The white giraffe was first spotted by camel herders in February this year. In the sanctuary, Somali Abdullah herders live peacefully with the wildlife. A strong conservation ethic has resulted in livestock and wildlife co-existing in Ishaqbini and it surrounding. The giraffe however proved to be elusive when a team from the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) tried to track it down. This led them to think that it was just a rumor by the herders, but just as they were about to give up they finally saw the giraffe in all its magnificence grazing with a regular herd. It was also spotted in late march by Jamie Manuel from the NRT together with a group of rangers from the Ishabini sanctuary. Jamie Manuel trains rangers and assists in conservation activities in all 33 NRT conservancies.
It is our hope that this magnificent creature will be kept safe as part of our unique heritage.