Photo by @amivitale. A happy rhino takes a mud bath at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy on Northern Kenya @lewa_wildlife. Populations of the Eastern black rhino plummeted by 98% between 1960 and 1995 primarily as a result of poaching and hunting, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Conservation efforts have stabilized and increased numbers in most of the black rhino’s former ranges since then. Kenya’s population is projected to rise significantly in the near future, especially with growing partnerships between government, communities and conservation organizations. It is hoped that the new rhino sanctuary will benefit Kenya’s black rhino population.
Photo by @amivitale. Shorty the reticulated giraffe gives Ami a kiss at Sarara Camp (@sararacamp) in Northern Kenya. He is a young rescue — his mother died from drought — but he is doing well under the care of Sarara's dedicated wildlife keepers. One day he will be reunited with wild herd at the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in the Mathews Range, also home to Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e). Please follow and come visit @sararacamp and @r.e.s.c.u.e to learn more about the incredible work they are doing.
Happy #EarthDay! Today is the last day of the @natgeocreative Print Sale, which includes this signed print of my image of Ye Ye at Wolong Nature Reserve, shot on assignment for @natgeo for the August 2016 cover story "Pandas Gone Wild," as well as incredible images from my colleagues at National Geographic. Visit the link in my profile to see all the amazing images on sale.
I’m pleased to announce that my @natgeo cover image of 16-year-old panda Ye Ye at Wolong Nature Reserve is part of the @natgeocreative’s Flash Sale collection in honor of #EarthDay! The sale is running from April 17-22. Visit the link in my profile to see all the amazing signed prints on sale for $100.
Photo by @amivitale at @fieldmuseum These are the original specimens that Theodore and Kermit Roosevelt brought to the US in 1929. They are on display in Chicago at the incredible @fieldmuseum. I am speaking tonight at 7 pm for @natgeo LIVE at the Goodman theatre and will talk about pandas!
Photo by @amivitale. A baby elephant on the move at Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e). The sanctuary is part of the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in the remote Mathews Range of Northern Kenya, home to Kenya’s second-largest elephant population. Reteti is the first community owned and managed sanctuary in Africa and their goal is to rescue and rehabilitate these elephants so they can rejoin their wild herds.
Photo by @amivitale. Suyian was the first elephant rescued by the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e) in Northern Kenya. Reteti is part of the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy and is the first community-owned and run elephant sanctuary in Africa. The Matthews Range where Namunyak is situated is home to Africa's second-largest elephant population. Community-based wildlife keepers there are working to rehabilitate abandoned and orphaned elephants in order to eventually return them to the nearby wild herds.
In this sense, community based conservation is likely to be the only viable alternative for vast tracts of Africa, in the parts beyond agriculture and where big animals and nomadic pastoralists still make their home. This elephant sanctuary is the culmination of a two-decades long process of tipping conservation upon its head, protecting wildlife for, and not just from, people. In that sense the sanctuary is as much about people as it’s about elephants. The elephants and this initiative need your support. You can help by following or donating!
Photo by @amivitale. Shaba and Baawa greet Naomi, one of the keepers at Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e), the first community-owned and run elephant sanctuary in Africa. It sits on the 850,000 Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in Northern Kenya, which helps the Samburu families who own it combine their knowledge with science to more sustainably manage their rangeland. The elephant sanctuary is the culmination of a two-decades long process of tipping conservation upon its head, protecting wildlife for, and not just from, people. In that sense, the sanctuary is as much about people as it’s about elephants.
Photo by @amivitale. An elephant searches for water from a well in the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in Northern Kenya. By day, it’s a heaving dusty mess of bellowing cattle and bleating goats, intermingling with a few camels, donkeys and the occasional dog. By nightfall, people and their livestock retire, replaced by the gentle rumble of elephants, impala, warthogs, and kudu, who come also to drink.
Photo by @amivitale. Mary, one of the wildlife keepers from the local Samburu community, watches over orphaned or abandoned reticulated giraffes at the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in Northern Kenya. Reticulated giraffe number less than 8,700 individuals — as a distinct species, it makes them some of the most endangered large mammals in the world. Though scientists long classified giraffes as one species with multiple subspecies, new research revealed that giraffes should be four species. The goal is to eventually release these giraffe back into the wild. Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e) and Sarara Camp (@sararacamp) are part of the Samburu-owned Namunyak Conservancy.
Photo by @amivitale. A guest says hello to an orphaned kudu named Kody that is being rehabilitated at Sarara Camp (@sararacamp) in Northern Kenya. Kody will one day meet other kudus and return to the wild. Along with Reteti Elephant Sanctuary, Sarara is part of the Samburu-owned Namunyak Community Conservancy.
You can help the people on the frontlines of saving these animals by supporting @r.e.s.c.u.e and visiting @sararacamp!