The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Fostering Map click
Click on a pin to learn more about the place a particular orphan was
found and the plight of elephants in that area.
Meru National Park, Rhino Sanctuary
Meru National Park was once a National Reserve established as a wildlife sanctuary by the Meru County Council. (A National Reserve is tribal land set aside as an initiative of the respective community for the preservation of wildlife, but inhabited by humans whose activities (mainly pastoral) remain paramount. A National Park, on the other hand, is an area set aside exclusively for wildlife where the interests of wildlife are paramount and no humans have right of abode, other than those that work there).
Meru National Reserve, an area of 870 sq. kms, ( 215,000 acres or 87,044 hectares) was bequeathed to the Government by the Meru County Council in 1966 and attained full National Park status thereafter through Legal Notice 478 dated 18th December of that year. As a front-line Park to neighbouring Somalia, it has faced near total collapse on several occasions due to immense poaching for both ivory, rhino horn and the bushmeat trade as well as corrupt management. The habitat is scenically stunning, with the densely populated Nyambeni Mountain range as a back-drop where there is sufficient elevation for the cultivation of tea, coffee and cash crops. Mt. Kenya is visible in the far distance, and, like Kora, there are rocky inselbergs, one of which has the famous Elsa’s Kopje Luxury Lodge built amongst its rocks. The Tana river flows along the Park’s Northern boundary, fed from the Ura and numerous other permanent rivers and springs that rise in the Nyambenis and flow through the Park, fringed with lush riverine vegetation , extensive palm groves, and neighbouring swamplands, contrasting to the arid nature of the Commiphora scrubland of the Park itself, which resembles that of the Northern Area of Tsavo East, but which is blessed with open savannah plains as well.
Meru Rhino Sanctuary was first built in the early 2000’s it was just last year in 2017 that the Meru Rhino Sanctuary was expanded, increasing the size from 48 square kilometers to 83.5 square km, extending the electric fence line by a further 25.6km along with developing another two security bases for KWS personnel. The expansion and upgrade of the Meru Rhino Sanctuary and its ongoing fence maintenance was a project funded and undertaken by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, with the rhino population within the sanctuary standing at 60 white rhinos and 25 black rhinos. Importantly 20 strategically located wildlife corridors allow for free movement of elephants and all other wildlife, with the exception of rhinos, who cannot pass through the short posts erected between the specially designed fence corridors.