The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is best known for raising orphaned elephants and rhinos, but we have many orphans of varying species that have come into our care over the years that we have hand raised so that they may live a wild life again.
At this time in Amu we have a hand raised Oribi antelope, raised by our Amu team, who is now fully integrated into the wild community but chooses to still visit her human family.
Our Voi Keepers are raising an orphaned Zebra called Ngulia, a bush meat poaching victim, rescued by The Kenya Wildlife Service in Tsavo. She will grow up and assimilate into a Zebra herd in the Park once old enough.
At Kaluku, our field headquarters that abuts the National Park in Tsavo, we have Nuk, a Gerenuk rescued by KWS from the Manyani Ranger Training Academy. Nuk is now nearly full grown, and living a totally free and wild life, but he still chooses to return and visit those who raised him at Kaluku from time to time, sometimes with absences of a few months. Little Cassie a female Lesser Kudu, a friend and companion of Nuk's, transcends both worlds, as does a bush buck orphan called Nyika.
Last week at the Nairobi Nursery we received a tiny orphaned giraffe rescued by KWS veterinary Officer Dr. Njoroge who heads the DSWT funded Amboseli mobile veterinary unit. We have called him Kili. Feeding Kili is a very different experience for our Keepers, as despite him being just days old they still need to clamber high up on the stockade partitions in order to get the bottle at the appropriate angle so that it feels natural for him, and a special mobile feeding ladder is having to be made! Kili does have issues with his front knees, stretched tendons make these appear double jointed but we are hopeful that this will correct in time.