Life On Earth
Kenya Begins Massive Animal Relocation
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenya has started moving about 2,000 animals including hundreds of zebra and impala to a famed game reserve devastated by poaching, officials said on Friday.
The month-long exercise is part of a drive to rebrand Meru National Park, which is best known outside the country as the setting for George and Joy Adamson's book and Oscar-winning 1966 film "Born Free," about an orphaned lioness cub they raised.
"Such species as the endangered Grevy Zebra, Common Zebra, Impala, Kongoni (Hartebeest) and Beisa Oryx are targeted for what is considered the great African ungulate translocation," Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) said in a statement.
The animals will be taken from better-stocked reserves in Naivasha, Nakuru and Laikipia, KWS said, where they will be driven into funnel-shaped capture sites and loaded into crates.
"(Meru) lost its position as a premier destination for visitors seeking complete wilderness when it suffered a downturn in the 1970s and early 80s due to rampant banditry and poaching," said KWS spokesman Paul Udoto.
"But that's all part of history."
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