Lamu hippos now safe,KWS warden

Hippos huddled in an evaporating puddle PHOTO file

Lamu,KENYA:Hundreds of hippos who were at the brink of death after they got stuck in the muddy residue at the Lake Kenyatta in Mpeketoni after the lake dried up due to the recent drought are now out of danger following the heavy rains that have been pounding the region.

The water levels at the lake are slowly going back to normal meaning the hippos and other animals reliant on the lake can go on with their lives as usual. This is according to the Lamu KWS warden Jacob Orale.

Speaking in Lamu on Sunday, in Lamu, Orale said hundreds of hippos that were stuck in mud at the lake,Mkunumbi dam and at Lake Chomo in Lamu were all able to move out safely shortly after the rains began.

Atleast 30 hippos perished during the drought period due to dehydration and fatigue having stuck in mud for days.

Orale said the mortality would have been higher were it not for interventions like water trucking,direct water pumping and provision of hay in some areas.

He said the pressure for water and food between wild animals and people has reduced since the wildlife have left for other areas far from human habitats since they can now access water and forage from their natural habitats.

“We want to thank the communities for their understanding of the predicament of the wildlife during the drought.they provided water.conservancies like Amu ranch invested heavily on rescue missions,”said Orale.

The KWS warden however warned people against encroaching water catchments and wildlife designated areas in order to prevent degradation of water catchment areas  and human-wildlife conflicts.

He said the government will not compensate farmers who invade public,private and wildlife areas for nay losses incurred by wildlife.