ol malo

Ch. 36: The Elephant Graveyard

The Waso corridor stretches from Kirimon to Kipsing. Right in the middle of this vast land there is a rock formation called Tali, behind it lies an important path in which migration elephants pass.

Difficult terrain and thick bush has in the last 9 months made this a ‘poaching hotspot’ – we are doing all we can to try and reverse this deadly trend.

This is what an Elephant Graveyard looks like.




This week we are happy to be able to share a guest post from Kenya Wildlife Service honorary warden Colin Francombe.

Colin has been living in Northern Kenya for 50 years and is a devoted conservationist. His knowledge of the Samburu and their ecosystem is encyclopaedic and he is highly respected amongst the Samburu as an elder of the Kimaniki age group.

In 1989 Kenya took a stand by burning its ivory stockpiles, worth millions of dollars, in the hope that other countries would follow suit and prevent the African elephant from extinction. This statement strengthened the newly formed CITIES total ban on ivory trade, collapsing the market on ivory and allowing the Elephant to recuperate.

In 1997 the total ban was lifted to allow experimental trade with China and Japan, now blamed for fueling a market that has seen a population of 300,000 African Elephants dwindle to an approximate 20,000, facing local extinctions all over Africa.

Colin was instrumental in the kind of action that these Elephant now desperately need once again if they are to survive, and this week he shares with us his tale of the Ivory Bonfire:

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Nosokoni was a little girl that was attacked by an elephant while collecting firewood.

This is the story of her ordeal and recovery as described by Julia Francombe, the founder of the Samburu Trust. This story was originally written by artist Annie Tempest, and has now been re-edited for the Waso Chapters.

Julia grew up in Samburuland, her parents Rocky and Colin run a private game ranch called Ol Malo that sits on the edge of the Laikipia Plateau in the remote desertlands of northern Kenya.

1. Nosokoni

On June 15th, 2000 some elders brought in a 6 year old girl to the ranch that had been crushed by an extremely large bull elephant.