Dr. Siva Sundaresan

Friday, March 18, 2011

Day 3

Sorry about no Day 2!  There was a huge rainstorm that kept me in my room and once it gets dark I can't walk to where there is internet due to lions and elephant.  Those are two really good reasons I think!   Here is an impala that rose early with me as I watched the sunrise...

So I want to answer the questions first and thank everyone for comments....
1.  What animals have I seen so far?  Olive baboons, vervet monkeys, Grevys Zebra, elephant, impala

2. Do most Grevy's zebras have collars?  No, not that many do.  Collaring is expensive and also can be stressful for the animal as they must be darted with a sedative drug to make them sleep for a short time.   The largest population of Grevy's in the world lives here at LEWA (about 400) keep in mind that there are only about 1700 total!!

3. How many animals do I plan to see?  That is a good question, I have no plans because you never know what, if anything, you will see here.  In movies I think it gives the impression that animals are around every corner, but believe it or not, you can be in the bush hours and see nothing at all!  I hope to see eland, rhino, and maybe even cheetah (these I have never seen in the wild!)

4. Am I doing anything else besides studying Grevy's Zebra?  Yes, definately.  Siva studies the Grevy's zebra, but I am working with the education program here at LEWA.  I am workign with the teacher of the new center to develop the program itself.  Its exciting to create it from the very beginning!

5. Are the kids I mentioned African children that have not seen wildlife?  Where do they live?  Yes, in many parts of Africa, not just Kenya, children living there may have never seen the wildlife that lives here in person.  This can be for many reasons, but around LEWA it is due to the fact that the communities that are surrounded by farmland, or cattle grazing land, do not ahve wildlife living there because the food resources for the wildlife are not present there.  In conservencies and reserves there are these resources for the animals, however some students have not yet been inside.  That is why the education program that I am working on is so exciting, we will be bussing in kids from the commu nities to show them their animals, their national heritage.

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