Rain At Last

Welcome to this new blog about the unique & wonderful Nairobi National Park & please excuse any technical errors as I am new to this game, especially when editing pictures…

In this blog I will be telling your, dear readers, about the NNP through the seasons.

First, perhaps a few stats & facts. NNP is a Kenyan National Park administered by KWS. It consists of 117 square kilometers of classic savannah habitat at an altitude of about 5,500 foot in Central Kenya. 

The good news is that we have RAIN at last, though the heavy showers we are experiencing are not enough to make up for the two seasons in succession we have missed out on . Is this global warming or just a dry spell?

In anycase, the activity levels of all creatures are in overdrive, with termites extending their structures whilst they have water (not to mention chomping up the grass & dead detritus left over from the dry season), birds singing & courting & looking for nest materials & hungry mammals hungrily grazing & browsing the brand new shoots….

A 5 foot black-necked spitting cobra visited my house the other day, our garden birds alerting us to it’s presence with their scolding alarm calls-maybe forced out of it’s underground space by the rain. It was allowed to slither away into the undergrowth.

The park is better than I have seen it for 10 years owing to the Controlled Burns conducted by KWS last Xmas. As a result the park has several thousand acres of short grass plain habitat, which has been absent these last years since the drought of 2000. As a result the last wildebeest that we have in the ecosystem (the park & it’s dispersal area –about 300 kilometres squared) are in the park right now (278 counted by KWS in early October) as are good  numbers of Grants & Thompsons gazelles, which had voted with their hooves & disappeared off into the dispersal area but now, having found attractive grazing, are back.

But is KWS going to burn this year to maintain the momentum? If so, they are leaving it fairly late (the park should be burnt PRIOR to the Rains….)

One of the NNP lionesses has 3 small cubs in attendance (seen in the Sosian valley) which brings my guesstimate to 22 individual lions in the park at the moment. 5 rhinos were translocated out of NNP this last week, which leaves me wondering how many we have left? On the positive side (& this blog intends to accentuate that whenever possible) a cow was seen near the Langata Gate with a tiny newborn calf.