I am here again for a final appeal to you on behalf of the Mara North Conservancy and our drive to secure its future in the face of the significant challenges we are experiencing in tourism.
I have been overwhelmed with the generosity shown by so many of you, demonstrating your understanding of the importance of the conservancy concept in a world where land available to wildlife is only shrinking through increased human pressure.
As the Founder and Chairman of Mara North Conservancy (MNC), I make my final appeal to you to give generously, so that we can achieve our goal of raising $355,000 to help secure the future of MNC and the wildlife that rely on it.
You have rallied together and raised an impressive $77,178 which will go directly towards essential equipment such as patrol vehicles, anti-poaching vehicles, tractors, digital VHF radios, ranger bases, and increasing much-needed boots on the ground, as well as securing vital habitat by registering leases for conservation, all essential for MNC’s continued effectiveness as a protected wildlife area.
A gift of just $50 from each of you will take us well and truly to our goal, and you will have the satisfaction of knowing you’ve helped secure the future of a pristine wilderness and the wildlife that rely on it.
With Kenya’s tourism in a challenging period at the moment, this financial assistance is desperately needed to improve the welfare of the local community and our wildlife on MNC.
Thus far, I have conveyed my appeal to you via stories of the Great Migration and the plight of the Marsh Lions, prime examples of the ongoing strains between humans and wildlife sharing the land, and why the conservancies play such a vital role in protecting wildlife environments.
I was so incredibly heartened last week by a great story you may have seen on social media. Happening only a handful of times in the last five years, a Black Rhino was spotted in the Mara North Conservancy, outside of the Mara Triangle and Reserve where they are primarily situated.
The wonderful nature of this occasion is appreciated in the context of the history of Black Rhinos in the Maasai Mara eco-system.
In the mid 1900’s rhinos were thought to number between 150-200 in the Mara eco-system. By the 1970’s through impacts of poaching and decreased vegetation, rhino numbers reduced to approximately 108. The situation only got worse with further heavy poaching, such that by 1985 the number of Black Rhinos was a mere 13 individuals!
Thankfully, through conservation efforts, the numbers stopped decreasing and have come back to the current number today of approximately 25-30 individuals. These rhinos have been largely confined to the Reserve area where historically they were provided with the greatest protection.
The creation of the Mara North Conservancy afforded an additional 74,000 acres of protected land to roaming wildlife. Through a successful and ongoing grazing program a secure corridor has opened up between Mara Triangle and MNC, which has led to a continuous flow of animals, including the black rhino spotted last week. Although very exciting news, it’s with a touch of sadness we acknowledge that black rhinos once freely roamed these areas without the need of a secure passage.
MNC’s continued presence and good work will only ensure further positive effects on the Black Rhino population of the Mara, the only indigenous Black Rhino population in Kenya, unassisted by breeding programs and translocations.
So I appeal to you again, help us raise the funds necessary to keep MNC safe and providing much needed habitat to the wildlife of the Mara.
Please consider making your most generous gift to Mara North Conservancy. Not only in honour of your personal experience and involvement in the Maasai Mara and your love for Africa, but also to enable your family and friends to visit the Mara in years and generations to come.
By June this year I will send you all a report of what we have done with your generous donations. I trust that we will be able to purchase and build up the infrastructure that we so desperately require.
Thank you again,
Chairman, Mara North Conservancy