A great New Years gift awaited us on January first:
Bongo mother ‘Baraka’ gave birth to a healthy female calf during the night.
Mother Baraka (Kiswahili for BLESSING) was one of the first group of bongo calves born to the ‘native American’ mothers that were returned to Kenya.
Four days into 2009 another little ‘girl ‘ bongo joined her. Her mother carries the proud name “Miss Kenya,” first born on Kenyan soil of American Heritage!!
All of us here take great pride in naming the two new bongo after two other delightful young girls of true Kenyan heritage that have made world news lately:
Malia and Sasha, the charming young daughters of President Barack Obama.
Photos by long time Conservancy supporter Jane McKeand who was there just after the two “girls” made their entrance into the world!
Breeding during 2008 has brought our entire herd up to 62 animals. This constitutes the largest bongo herd anywhere in the world. Although this is an impressive number. Last year the bongo have produced predominantly male calves, no less beautiful but not as desirable when it comes to breeding programs.
The arrival of the two pretty female calves signifies “the change” we were hoping for and what more apt names then Malia and Sasha.
All through the recent hardships our country Kenya has remained committed to conservation of the mountain bongo.
Very soon now we hope to return the first group of Mountain bongo to their original habitat on Mount Kenya where they have become extinct. This will be the “world premiere” of a release back to the wild of any mountain antelope, ever!
With your help we hope to make the first release a reality this “year of change” to celebrate conservation as a global affair and the African-American cooperation as a shining example of what is possible if we all believe.
Your participation and help is crucial. Donations of money help with food for the Bongo breeding group (now numbering 64!). We also have to find funds to pay the dedicated staff that insure their well being. Then there are the VET bills, fencing and maintenance of breeding areas, patrol cars and petrol for anti poaching and the list goes on!!
You could also participate/help by spreading the word to your friends. Maybe Your company would like to place an ad on our blog? Maybe you know of a fund that would be interested in supporting the Conservancy’s work with a grant? Remember it is all about the future of our planet for us, and generations to come.
To find out how your donation can help Contact Jane at the Conservancy.