1.5m flamingoes bring tourists back



Flamingoes have returned to Lake Nakuru National Park in large numbers following rains experienced in the area over the last few months.

The number of flamingoes, which are the main attraction at the park, is estimated to be 1.5 million.

A few months ago, the number dropped to about 400,000 due to the drought that hit the country.

Senior Warden Lydia Kisoyan said the rains had seen a 100 per cent recovery of the lake’s water capacity.

"Last year the lake lost about two thirds of its water; in fact, we had just a pool of water resulting to migration of the flamingoes to other areas due to lack of food," she said, adding the three major rivers that feed the lake are also overflowing after drying up for months.

"Rivers Njoro, Makalia and Nderit are now flowing and very active resulting to a lake that is overflowing with water and submerging the roads used to tour the park," she added.

Kisoyan said there was a lot of food in the ecosystem even for other wild animals living in the park.

"We are also recording decreased deaths of other wild animals as food is in plenty," she said.

The return of the flamingoes has seen the number of tourists visiting the park go up in the last two months. "We are in our peak season and we are registering about 1,500 visitors every day," she said.

town’s garbage

However, according to the warden, the heavy rains also came with its disadvantages, which are affecting the park.

Kisoyan says Nakuru Town’s poor drainage system has seen most of the town’s garbage drain at the park, posing a great risk to the animals.

"When it rains all garbage especially plastics end up at the lake. This kind of effluent is dangerous to the animals once consumed," she said.

Premium Coffee reforms standoff persists as CS appoints transition team
Premium Salary delays as counties face cash crunch
Premium More pain for borrowers as big banks pass on interest rate hike
Ruto challenges youth to be part of change in Africa