Several incidents of giraffe poaching have been reported recently. Two dead giraffe were recently witnessed just outside of the National Park. The carcasses were stripped of meat and the skins neatly folded beside them! The giraffe may have been killed by a lion but the carcass then stolen by opportunists to make some cash selling the meat and hide.
While on a recent trip to Kipeto, the third triangle of the Kigengela I heard from David Sorimpan that giraffe poaching was also occurring in the area and that just last week the Olerai rangers came across a gang that had killed a full grown giraffe. To catch it they had strung wire nooses in the acacia trees that the giraffe feed on. The giraffes head got caught in the noose and it basically became strangled as it tried to escape. A excruciatingly cruel and painful way to kill an animal.
The community know who the poachers were, they came from Kiserian town where the meat was to be sold in a local butchery. The Olerai manager called KWS who arrived on the scene after the poachers had left. No arrests were made despite knowing who the poachers were. Without power to take action the work of the dedicated rangers is extremely tough.
The recent killing of Nairobi Park giraffe for meat is getting national attention. It was covered by Maxwell Musava in the Nairobi Star, one of Kenya’s leading newspapers on 24th February. (Thank you Ed Loosli of The Wildlife Foundation for sending the article – see below)
What nobody is saying is that if poachers can get away with killing the Nairobi Park giraffe so easily, then valuable rhino’s? This disturbing trend of increasing boldness of the poachers, means that the park and all it’s animals are at grave risk.
Kenya: 102 Kilos of Giraffe Meat Impounded in Kitengela
24 February 2011
Police have warned meat eaters to be on the look-out following the arrest of two people with giraffe meat on Tuesday night.
The two men were arrested in Kitengela, Kajiado County, while ferrying 102 kilos of the meat to Nairobi. The two are suspected to have killed the giraffe at the Nairobi National Park.
Nairobi Police Commander Antony Kibuchi said the suspects will be charged. “The suspects will be arraigned in court for selling game meat which is illegal,” Kibuchi said.
Police suspect the meat was destined to Nairobi. Kibuchi urged public health officers to carry out regular inspection of meat in city butcheries. This is the second time this month that police have arrested people trading in game meat.
Early in the month, two men were arrested while transporting more than 400 kilos of Zebra meat to city’s Burma Market. The suspects, who were in a saloon car had put the meat in paper bags.