When wildlife ranger Bernard received a call that there was a one-week old giraffe in need of rescue, he jumped into action. As one of the heads of the Meru mobile veterinary unit, it’s his responsibility to save the lives of stricken animals within Meru National Park in Kenya.
This incredible footage shows how the rescue was planned and undertaken to give the giraffe the best possible chance of survival. Because of their delicate spines, giraffes have to be transported with their back upright at all times, or they risk being permanently injured.
As such, Bernard had to ensure that the giraffe was carried to the plane carefully, and transported within in a seated position. When you think about it, it’s really quite a remarkable rescue operation!
What’s equally as incredible, is that the giraffe made no attempts to flee or break free from his protective jacket while he was being prepared for transportation on the flight. It seems that he fully understood the need to be rescued.
Because the giraffe was found without his mother, his chances of survival were almost nil. For that reason, he was airlifted to Nairobi, which saved him a grueling eight hour drive across bumpy roads, which would have been torturous for him to endure.
When he arrived at the Nairobi nursery, the giraffe was very calm and affectionate to his rescuers, and quickly adjusted to his new surroundings.
Cared for with support from the Sheldrick Trust, the giraffe is now extremely happy in his new enclosure, and he has even made some new friends! Two of his best buddies are elephants, who were orphaned and recently brought to the orphanage to protect them from poachers.
The giraffe was given the name KIKO, and he has become a popular and friendly resident of the orphanage. While the wildlife officers still don’t know what came of his mother, KIKO was rescued from an area that has been affected by human/wildlife conflict.
Thanks to the continued efforts of the Sheldrick Trust, KIKO has a great chance of being released back into the wild when he can care for himself. To follow KIKO’s journey, or to make a contribution to the efforts of the trust, visit their website.
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