Photo by @ivan.Carter It was a privilege to witness up close this epic move of nineteen giraffe across the Nile River inside Uganda’s Murchison Falls National Park in August. The Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) organized the move with support from Namibia-based Giraffe Conservation Foundation (@giraffe_conservation) and local partners Uganda Wildlife Education Center (UWEC) and Makerere University, as well as an array of international zoo partners, funded by the Metzler Foundation. The rare giraffes were moved from the section of the park north of the river, where they are under growing threat from oil drilling and poaching, to its more removed southern sector.
Murchison Falls is the last remaining stronghold for one of the most endangered of the nine giraffe subspecies, the Rothschild’s giraffe. The goal of Operation Twiga’s artificial migration is to create a giraffe insurance policy by taking advantage of one fact: Giraffes don’t swim. Once south of the river, the transplants would stay there.
During the past 15 years, the African herbivore’s numbers have plummeted from an estimated 155,000 to around 97,000 today—what some scientists call a “silent extinction.” @giraffe_conservation @natgeo @natgeocreative @thephotosociety @nikonusa # #nikonusa #nikonlove #nikonnofilter #nikonambassador #nikond5s #photojournalism #amivitale #giraffe #Uganda #Wildlife #endangered