Footage shows giraffe finally getting water as hundreds of animals die due to drought in Kenya
This is the heartbreaking moment a desperate giraffe is given a drink and doused in water as it lays dying of dehydration and starvation due to a drought in Kenya.
The severe drought has left thousands of the endangered reticulated giraffe population struggling to survive in dire conditions, with calves orphaned or abandoned as wildlife rangers rush to support the dwindling numbers until the next “big rain” forecast in March 2022.
“Climate change has huge repercussions on our lives and nature. We are losing many species to drought and many others to wildfires”, Wild at Life Chief Conservation Officer Asli Han Gedik said.
“The climate is not the same and our Biodiversity is at risk. At this speed, we will lose many more species and mass extinction will be inevitable.”
Giraffes are one species dying en masse and battling for survival in the face of wildfires, rising temperatures, and drought, which has meant that trees are not able to grow leaves - their normal food supply.
With human populations also suffering as a result of the drought, many of the scarce water sources are being redirected by farmers to keep their cattle alive - with herders driving giraffes away from the water supply.
NGO Save The Giraffes said giraffe calves are particularly vulnerable, with many starving and falling behind due to their dehydrated mothers’ limited milk supply - and some have been orphaned by the drought.
Now in an effort to prevent the death of any more of the 10,000 giraffes present in the region, two international expert NGO’s, Wild at Life and Safe the Giraffes, have teamed up to help supply as many of the animals with supplementary water and food supplies as possible.
Nearly 200 paid locals have been gathering acacia seed pods to feed to the giraffes, whilst Wild at Life has provided food pellets and care for the orphaned giraffes.
Han Gedik added: “We already went through a drought and the current crisis is the second rainy season failure in far-flung areas.
“Garissa and Wajir are among the biggest counties in Kenya by area size. Most of the giraffes have no access to the river which is just in Garissa.
“The giraffes are responding well to acacia pods and we want to scale up this effort and establish hundreds of temporary feeding stations across the range and try introducing pellets.
“Most of the animals that are dying are young, probably due to dehydration and malnutrition. The majority of the herds are young at this time of the year and are very vulnerable to drought.
“We have seen cases of abandoned calves and we are trying to rescue as many as possible.
“While providing water, we also employ locals to gather acacia pods and supply all the temporary stations. Nearly 200 people are collecting the pods and giraffes are eating them.”
A fundraiser by Wild at Life is urgently trying to raise $20,000 to support on-the-ground teams working across the drought-stricken region to supply vital water, buy food, and gather seed pods for the dehydrated and starving giraffes until the rains come.