"When we lose an animal species to extinction, we lose part of our family!"
"Journey to Extinction" Kenya. The home of the last of the Northern white rhinos. The journey begins in Nairobi, a city alive with the rhythm of constant motion, vibrant colors, and the cacophony of daily life. A brief interlude at the Intercontinental offers respite within the fortress-like oasis, a stark contrast to the pulsating energy outside—a city that never sleeps. Embarking on the road to Ol' Pejeta, the weight of witnessing extinction becomes palpable. Sudan, Najin, and Fatu—names etched into the annals of conservation history. The warmth of the Kenyan sun served as a poignant backdrop to the urgency of their story. Encounter with Sudan: The Last of His Kind
Stepping into Sudan's enclosure, the reality of being in the presence of the last male Northern white rhino unfolds. Ringo, Sudan's lively companion, adds a touch of hope amidst the somber reality. The ranger's soft singing and mud-rubbing ritual underscore the vulnerability of extinction—a profound moment that defies articulation. Najin and Fatu: Guardians of the Last Hope
Najin and Fatu, the last remaining females of their kind, grace a spacious enclosure with mountains and endless skies. Carrots become tokens of interaction as these magnificent creatures push towards our 4x4, embodying resilience. Amidst gentle rubs and quiet words, some of the rangers embark on evening patrols against the breathtaking backdrop of Mount Kenya.
As the sun sets, the conservancy comes alive with the enchanting sounds of the bush. Moonrise offers a moment of reflection, interrupted by the curious presence of hyenas and jackals. The night unfolds as a symphony of life, highlighting the delicate balance between the wild and the encroaching threat of extinction.
The hope for a future where humanity embraces its role as stewards of the wild remains steadfast, an unwavering commitment to a world where the Northern white rhinos are not lost but found anew.
(photos: kimberly wood, bog photography)