This year’s theme at Lewa's Safe-To-Roam, was literally about going further and doing more to actualise the primary goals of securing endangered species, managing habitats, and improving coexistence and livelihoods.
Veterinary services are essential to these goals. The vet team responds to clinical emergencies ensuring vulnerable species are not decimated by avoidable circumstances, such as spear injuries or snares.
The vet unit also has other critical roles, like translocation. Recently the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), supported by Lewa, translocated five elephants from a local community to expansive Tsavo National Park. In such cases, the Lewa team is integral to logistical machinery, using their fixed-wing plane to locate animals and our helicopter to dart and tranquilize them for capture and transport.Translocations are key to mitigating human-wildlife conflict while also restoring healthy wildlife populations to other parts of Kenya. For many years, Lewa has worked closely with KWS to translocate over 30 rhinos from Lewa to other conservancies and new sanctuaries. These translocations are also necessary to ensure we maintain an optimal rhino capacity on the landscape, thus easing pressure on our habitat and ensuring its sustainability.