The Wildlife Foundation supports 8 community rangers in the Nairobi National Park Wildlife dispersal area. The rangers work in co-operation with the local communities, the area leadership, KWS rangers and the Kenya Police to come to the aid of local citizens, whenever wild animals become a threat and to stop wildlife poaching in the area.

These rangers are all drawn from the local community and provide valuable community support to conserve wildlife in the areas around the Nairobi National Park eco-system. The areas include Empakasi, Oloosirkon, Sholinke, Olooloitikoshi and Kitengela.

TWF Community Rangers in Manyani.

The programme is currently being funded in partnership with USAID and the rangers have attended the KWS training school at Manyani and are equipped with uniforms and vehicles which include Suzuki 4WD’s and motorcycles.

The sun rose over Empakasi Primary School on the Naretonoi Conservancy near Kitengela town. Busses pulled up and people piled out. Some unloaded bicycles. Everyone received a numbered bib while upbeat electronic hip-hop blared over the speakers and a pop-up Zumba class facilitated the warm up.

Around 7AM, the cyclists were off. The runners followed shortly behind. The course followed a dirt path through bush-studded grasslands, dense acacia forest, and small villages. Zebra, impala, ostriches, and wildebeests grazed in close proximity. Rangers worked behind the scenes to drive away any threats.

As racers crossed the finish line, they received a medal. Music and Zumba resumed. Juices and hot food were available for sale. It was the 5th annual Bicycles 4 Wildlife (B4W) cycling event, but the first time we offered a trail run option. As a result, we had a record turn out of about 150 runners and cyclists, which is triple the attendance of last year.

The event’s sponsors are dedicated to conserving wildlife biodiversity and local communities by nurturing a sustainable relationship between humans and wildlife. Proceeds from the race support The Wildlife Foundation’s Conservation and Livelihoods Program, which you can read more about here.

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Photos by Xtrym Adventures

The Nairobi National park has been facing a number of threats in recent years, when
the park first opened only Nairobi city itself was the only physical barrier that
diverted what was a northward migration towards the Aberdare range and the foot
of Mount Kenya, the erection of fences along the northern perimeter closed that
route. Even with this fencing and eventual loss of a migration route the animals of
Nairobi National park still had another option the south side which allowed the
animals to move freely out of the park.

The availability of a Migration route for the animals of the park is of great
importance for various reasons, the Nairobi national park is home to over forty
lions, Lions are very territorial and need space and the ability to move about without
interfering with other lions territories, the migration of the park animals also
prevents interbreeding and allows for the animals more specifically the herbivores to
find greener pastures during the dry season, keeping the south side unfenced and
undeveloped is what keeps all these paramount movements possible

The south side is facing a great threat from the housing industry and a number of
farmers encroaching on the land if this were to go on it would lead to the eventual
loss of all migration routes for the Nairobi national park migratory animals turning
Nairobi National park into a zoo which would be a devastating loss for Kenya being the
only country with a park right in its city. we would stand to loose as a country a
major economic resource


Laika Mbagathi

Student Intern

The Wildlife Foundation