Of the Floody Drought Season and Kenyans

©Sott Net  ©Kenya Red Cross

Before March 2018, Kenyans did not understand the existence of an intimate relationship between floods and droughts. In fact, most of us have always thought that floods are for rains as drought is for the sun. At least that is what our Nursery class teacher said. And if the teacher’s words are to go by, then things have really changed nowadays as floods are for drought and the sun is for the rain. Climate confusion one side. Apparently, human beings have distorted nature’s original functionality to an extent of confusing it. Nature no longer knows how to react to human destruction! It has reached a point where nature does not know whether to flood or drought. Whether to kill or spare, whether to sustain or destroy, and whether to remain sane or go absolutely crazy. Sometimes, as currently being witnessed, it chooses to be a mixture of crazy and some drops of hell. Kenya’s desert, Chalbi, is flooding! While a good percentage of Kenyans are suffering from the outcomes of the recent floods that left about 15 people dead, a better one is dying of drought-related starvation. Either way, it is clear that when nature gets confused, human beings suffer in equal measures.



Picture this, a house where half of the family members is down with obesity while the other half is struggling with marasmus. A father in such a homestead does not have the rights to speak before men of his kind who are, never the less, claiming to fight for the well-being of their families. I mean how can you starve half of your family and overfeed the other to an extent of killing them? This is exactly what is happening in Kenya, where the government is torn between combating floods and dealing with adverse effects of drought, at the very time. Is the problem the greedy Nairobians who are busy constructing on riparian lands or the innocent, conservative residents of North Eastern Kenya who seem to have given up on thinking of what do about the daring drought.



We have made natural disasters so welcome that we consider them a norm. No one, including the government, is shocked to hear of drought in North Eastern anymore. In fact, tentative national budgets are only set to deal with post-drought effects and none on preventing future adversities or sustainable mitigation. The local residents are now so used to the drought that the only thing they are left to do during the “drought season” of their ever drought-bound region is to sympathize with their dead cattle. You see, cattle in these regions are expected to be strong enough to survive dry seasons that have no water or pasture. Well, we know that the type of cattle kept in this area includes cows, goats, and camels, which, naturally, have the ability to regurgitate and chew the cud. But how many times do you expect the same cud to be chewed by the same animal in the name of survival? How on earth can a goat be expected to regurgitate the fodder it swallowed just before the drought began, which was three months ago? Tell me if this is not taking animals through an initiation process of separating men from boys.



Until when?
Until when shall we read about flood and drought-related loss of lives and property? Anyway, whenever such human-caused calamities occur, we are quick to count the magnitude of lives and property lost. But how many times do we count lost flora and fauna species, displace invasive species, and the impact on survival of fish, bird, and other “unknown” species? Looking at it this way, you realize that the impact of man on natural systems goes beyond the visible. This is the time National Construction Authority will be busy perusing through wet pages of their yellow notes to “assess” buildings that should not have been constructed (which, anyway were constructed, for later deconstruction). Speeches and press conferences will be issued, but none will be addressing long-term strategies of de-confusing mother nature.



The current state of nature’s confusion must be addressed. Nature is mad, both upstairs and in the lowlands. I applaud the new Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Tobiko for the tree-planting marathon he has started and the war on logging. As his foot soldier, my gun is cocked! Let’s march in, I’m covering you Tobiko! Right behind you, shooting any visible corrupt KFS or logging cartel. I’m doing well, trust me. Just keep going, you can count on me for your back’s safety.

Can we plant trees through Nakumatt Ukay to various parts of Kahawa, Huruma, Tmall area, Ruai, Two Rivers, Nairobi CBD, Kajiado, and the whole of North Eastern? Yes, we can plant trees on Moi Day too.
The comment section, as always, is all yours.


GYBN Communities celebrating the World Wetland Day 2018

The efforts made by different groups in Kenya to sustain ecological values makes me proud of being Kenya’s representative at the GYBN secretariat. Let’s continue pushing for a greener planet regardless of the challenges, a triumph is just one more try away.

Global Youth Biodiversity Network

 We are very excited to share with you photos of GYBN members across the globe showcasing the wetlands they love on the this World Wetland Day. 
The World Wetland Day is celebrated every year on 2nd February and this year’s theme is Urban wetlands: prized land, not wasteland.

As cities expand and demand land increases, the tendency is to encroach on wetlands. They are degraded, filled in and built upon, yet when left intact or restored, urban wetlands make cities livable (Check out the infographics below).  

〰See how young people are taking action to play their part in saving the wetlands! 📢〰
Tuni-Condoriri Andean Mountain Range, Bolivia

bofedal.jpg  Why I care about this wetland? Although this is not an urban wetland, the water of the city of La Paz-Bolivia depends of this wetlands to help conserve and keep the glaciers of the Tuni-Condoriri system which is the main system…

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What are you doing on World Wildlife Day 2018? Here’s a plan..

GYBN in partnership with the UN Major Groups for Children and Youth is organizing a lively youth consultation on the occasion of the World Wildlife Day 2018 at the United Nations Headquarters at New York. We would like to invite all of you to join us online during the discussion to provide your inputs. The event will be […]

via Join us at the United Nations Headquaters for the World Wildlife Day 2018 — Global Youth Biodiversity Network

Gatamaiyu Forest, a National Gem under Threat


Lazing around is not my second name, but when I decide to waste time, it’s a game you can’t win. While in my lazy times, I do a lot of observation-mostly my environment. Sometimes I stare at the moon at night and spend hours wondering why it was named so. And sometimes I wander around. However, this is not one of those times, I’m serious, I’m busy, and I’m focused. I’m seriously thinking about the beautiful Gatamaiyu forest, busy observing how the gem is being depleted at the watch of responsible bodies and focused writing this, hoping that we can do something about it.

Gatamaiyu forest is one of the few remaining natural resources in the world that give users an acoustic feeling and sustain the lives of dependent communities. The little-known stretch mainly composed of indigenous trees form part of the larger Kereita ecosystem. The most interesting aspect of this awesome forest is that it lies only about 60KM from Nairobi, giving the Nairobi residents a perfect natural relaxation spa away from the baffles of the city, and for the locals, a sense of belonging and in possession of an asset that serves the region. However, this may not be the case a few years to come, as the agents of destruction and perpetrators of climate change (read humans) are stopping at nothing until they see the forest reduced to bare grounds.


Photo: Glen

A walk along the trails of Gatamaiyu forest will leave you feeling perplexed at just how much trees have to offer to human beings. Coupled with a few patches of mud that house insects and crawling animals, the forest’s bird species will welcome you with beautiful songs, and if lucky, a few displays to indicate how lucky they feel to call the place home.  You will be interested in learning that this forest welcomes you to the greater Aberdare ranges since it is part of the larger Kereita, an extension of natural trees and undergrowth. You will be happy to know that the region is designated as an Important Bird Area (IBA), meaning it contains bird species of local and global importance. It can be equated to the hospitality feeling you get when meeting a host well-mannered enough to introduce you to their immediate and larger family, making you feel as part of them.

cisticola tours

Cinnamon Bracken Warbler skulking in the forest- Photo by Washington Wachira

For learners and researchers, Gatamaiyu forest provides extensive knowledge on natural resource features and provides an overview of human-wildlife coexistence. No wonder the region’s fisheries department is located here. For lovers, you can start imagining walking along a river stream, under a natural canopy with varied bird calls and romantic moments on naturally fallen logs.  The beautiful Colobus monkies gracefully explore the forest, giving you endless reasons to appreciate nature. As an ice-cream topping, a waterfall, 18ft long is found inside Gatamaiyu forest!

Gatamaiyu and the larger Kereita forest is attached to important historical events, with the most important vivid one being the use of its fog cover by traditional Kikuyu warriors to fight against regional intruders and the whites during Mau Mau war that earned Kenya its independence. There’s more to it when I say Gatamaiyu is a national haven. A visit to Gatamaiyu and the larger Kereita forest drives you back in history to 1953 when the Larry Massacre took place. The colonial-local revenge war resulted in the death of over 4000 people.  The Kereita forest, mother to Gatamaiyu still hosts the mass graves in which the victims were buried.

Various efforts, including the formation of local organizations dedicated to the conservation of the forest, have been put into ensuring the sustainable existence of the resource. Besides, the Kenya Forest Service offices are located within reach from the forest’s Gate. Communities which directly depend on this forest perform activities such as bee-keeping and are hence in constant pursuit for its conservation.

Last weekend, on my routine visit to conservation places within Kenya, I planned and overtook a trip to the magnificent Gatamaiyu forest, with the hope of watching new bird species and watching my favorite monkeys-the black and white colobus. However, amidst the excitement of the forest’s hospitality, I couldn’t stop noticing the extensive deforestation that is threatening the existence of this gem. The tree logs had been freshly cut, meaning the destruction has just started, and that there is a room for action!


Join me, let’s advocate for the conservation of Gatamaiyu. The Kenya Forest Service should underline the importance of this forest and come into immediate action. We have seen many forests perish in the dirty hands of loggers; Gatamaiyo can’t afford to be one of them.


Want to visit this global haven? Write to https://goo.gl/ChSyJF.



Sharpe’s longclaw. Copyright: Neil Bowman

First allow me to express my sincere gratitude to Nyika Silika for listing this blog among top environmental content providers in Kenya. Humbled to note that there is a group of beautiful souls dedicating their creativity to conservation. May the list grow to fill the empty spaces left by extinct species on the earth surface, in pursuit for a better world. Get the full list here: https://goo.gl/HFebsf

Well, in life you have to choose a struggle, a temporary or lifetime encounter that shapes your lifeline. In most cases, your struggle develops into that one hell of a thing that just can’t let you be. From being the only person awake at 3:30 AM to the only one who is busy on your laptop screen on a Saturday evening when everyone else is either drunk, in a movie theater, betting, or breaking up with their loved ones. Have you ever thought of a man whose only struggle in life is conserving a single species of a bird?

Last weekend we paid a courtesy visit to this awesome group of dedicated, young, and energetic conservationists. The group had invited us, through the Nature Kenya Youth Committee, to educate high school students on climate change.


Well, I have received many requests in my life, but this was the noblest and humbling one. Sitting down with over 100 school children to discuss climate change is the most fulfilling experience one can ever have. It feels like passing the mantle of conservation of our lovely planet from one generation to another.


It could be for the realization of the fact that if nothing is done, the population of the Sharpe’s longclaw with soon reach its lowest which may have devastating effects including extinction of the species from the earth surface, that the friends of Kinangop Plateau were formed in 1996.


Many of you are aware of endemic bird species. In simple terms, these are birds whose existence is defined within a typical range. In simpler words, endemic birds exist only in certain habitats and nowhere else in the world. That is the life of a Sharpe’s Longclaw. A bird whose name was given in recognition of the famous ornithologist, Richard Sharpe. Less than 15,000 species of these birds remain in the grasslands of Kenya’s Kinangop Plateau, some parts of Mau Narok, and Uasin Gishu. However, Kinangop remains the sole safe haven for this beautiful species.  In the language of the mountain, the bird is known as “Agathon ka werũ-in”, which loosely translates to “a weaver-like bird which exists only in the grasslands”

Grasslands play a vital role in the existence of the Sharpe’s longclaw. For instance, the bird builds its nest on the grass’ tussocks. Besides, insects found in the extensive grasslands such as beetles provide sustainable meals for the bird. However, unlike many other bird species, the co-existence of this bird species with human beings has always been on the balance, with the feathered friend often being on losing end. Farmers are not comfortable with tussock grasslands which are a haven for the bird since the grass is not palatable for livestock use. As a result, farmers often uproot the grass to grown alternative species that can sustain their livestock. Also, alternative farming methods such as crop farming demand the clearing the grasslands, leaving the endemic species with nowhere to call home. These have been the contributing factors to the dwindling population of the bird’s population.

Friends of Kinangop Plateau have excellent camping facilities that have been constructed to perfectly blend with nature. Besides, through assistance from other stakeholders, including Nature Kenya, the group has acquired about 200 acres of land, put under grasslands for the conservation of the endemic Sharpe’s longclaw. In the process, over 100 other bird species, a number of reptiles, mammals, and plant species are sustainably protected. I can’t leave this here. The station overlooks the beautiful Aberdare Hills, with all the three peaks perfectly protruding! I choose to celebrate the struggle of Friends of Kinangop Plateau.

A trip to the Kinangop Plateau is the perfect way to complement Kenya and to appreciate efforts put in conserving species of Global Importance. Book your customized trip today with Wild World Expeditions (https://goo.gl/e8zwjW) and experience this Important Bird Area (IBA), first hand.


2017, the conservative year.2018, the open chance.

IMG_20170929_172522Happy end of January! Actually, I wanted to say this at the start of the year, but it was only a wish by then.
I hope the month has been awesome, at least to some of you. February usually marks the start of the year for many of us..and I believe this is the perfect time to ask this, what is your plan for this year? How energetic are you? How hopeful? How innovative? How strong? How how how..Why? because you need to.
Gone are the days when people could sit for long hours behind heavy tables and desks,looking all serious and forgetting all the old resolutions, only to craft *new* ones.|I view new year as an open chance to assess the turn of events and see how best to adjust to them.

Lest I forget, I’ve been great,just reshuffled a couple of things in my life, replaced priorities and some people, got a year older (the rate at which I’m getting old though..I wasn’t ready!), and chose (..or should I say subscribed to?) new struggles. Skippy gave birth to three awesome cuties-two slay queens and a hustler. I now have a slaying single mom at my place, this has compelled me to reduce the bride price-anything beyond two goats will do now.  Greyjoy finally got his way to my Skippy’s heart, and the results are visible. A new year surprise.                                                                                    Mike is still not married, all signs indicate that he has lowered his standards too, due to the unbearable pressure he has from all quarters . As the first member of the Idiots family ( though we are not complete idiots, some parts are still missing), he is to ensure he puts a ring on something-we mean anything-before the year ends. A fundraiser, sorry, a womanraiser event will be held for him if he will still be single by mid-June. Entry is free for ladies over 30 years. Kele is still undecided on whether to cross over to this side of the Sahara or remain at the comfort of Viva Mandela’s toe. Enough for updates.
Well, 2017 proved to be one of the best years as far as environmental conservation is concerned. I was particularly impressed by the interest of African youth in combating climate change and advocating for environmental preservation. I will not talk about the let down by our national and global leaders. I won’t even mention the Jubilee administration and Trump.
2017 saw young people come to terms with the fact that working in groups provides better and sustainable environmental returns than going for it alone. This should be spirit. And this has remained my position ever since. The formation and subscription of formal associations and networks geared towards sustainable biodiversity utilization is the surest path towards achievement of the United Nations strategic goals.                So here is my 2017 in a nutshell..
I’m torn out on trying to choose which conservation event was my year’s highlight. Whether it was attending the GYBN biodiversity forum in Johannesburg, the ACOY youth conference in Kampala, the UN marathon, or the Nature Kenya Water Fowl counts.
However, I must admit that coordinating the Global Match for Elephants, Lions, and Rhinos meant so much to me. I have never felt nature that real. It was like advocating and standing up for something I truly believe in. You understand, the energy that comes when trying to defending your wife from being snatched away by your neighbor. Poor example. Your wife can give herself out to the neighbor. I mean the type of energy you have when protecting your mother from being raped. Exactly. That was the zeal I had during the Global March.  I felt more like the animal rights defender I was born to be.

Another important highlight was marching against illegal-sorry, unlawful-No,unethical-Maybe unacceptable? Okay, let me say we were protesting against the devastating invasion of Nairobi National Park by some exotic and rare species of human beings called politicians. This is a bunch of people-err- a group of guys-actually of platoon of busy bodies who never care about the environment. They view everything and anything, including their own families, in monetary terms. How else can we describe persons who have the audacity to destroy world’s only national park in a capital city for political mileage?
It’s a new year, a new opportunity, and plenty of days to just do more. Reflect on your 2017 and count all the little things you did for the planet.  Even the morning bird watch expeditions count! While on it, like our Wild World Expeditions Facebook page for more (https://m.facebook.com/WildWorldExpeditions/ ). If what you did in 2017 is not enough, which I do not think it will ever be for nature, go out and do more! So, what’s your environmental struggle?

The comment section’s light is all green, go ahead.  Share with us.

When Nature Comes Calling..

Good morning from Kampala, the kingdom city of His Excellency. Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate between Uganda and Museveni, isn’t it?. Honestly, they sound and look the same. I won’t comment much, you know why. I’m writing right from his backyard here you know, lest I get thrown to the cells and commanded to support the no-age-limit motion that will allow him to rule until he dies-sorry, until his spirit leaves him and continue to rule over Ugandans in heaven. Or where do the souls of our African politicians go after they die? If at all they do die.

That aside, Uganda is one of the most beautiful countries you will ever visit. You can bet on that. The majestic shores of Lake Victoria, the unmatched hospitality of the Ugandan people, the unforgettable indigenous culture, and the amazing matoke meal are things you will never find anywhere else, not even in Mugabe of Mswati’s backyards.  Greetings to those old friends of mine, their inspiration especially In relation to polygamy is outstanding. Ever tried out matoke, chavalagra, crushed groundnuts, and ginger tea made of hot water, ginger leaves, and sugar? You will never eat anything else. I mean it. No wonder Uganda is hosting the first ever African Youth Conference on Climate Change and UN-SDGs, ACOY.  Environmentalists love local foods, and here we have it. Welcome to Uganda, the pearl of Africa. Write to wildworldexpeditions@gmail.com for an amazing experience in this wonderful country.


The day I traveled to this place was one of the most emotional days in my entire life. Leaving Skippy, my adorable cat, behind is not the easiest thing I can do. It is often a test of my faith and I don’t like it. Unfortunately I have to, not only because I have to represent Wild World Expeditions, but I want her to know a little about life-to miss me and to start preparing for the next life-marriage. This tendency of hers to ignore advances from potential mates should stop. Don’t let her know I said this, she will go for days without eating- but this cat will not live with me forever. She has to get married and bring me some grandcats to play with. Well, I’m not saying that she should start coming back home drunk and late in the night or join all those bad peers I see around. I’m only politely requesting her to understand that there comes a time when life is more than just applying make-up all day and slaying around. She can’t even do the dishes for fear of washing away her nail art. This kid. She needs to get a job-maybe chase some rats for my neighbors-who will pay me in turn. Kidding, I won’t let her suffer for anyone’s problems. Let rats dominate your house as much as they want but I won’t let my cat do the chasing. You know well she can’t eat rat, so why waste her little energy running around with them? She can equally look for a dude good at hustling-serves the same purpose. No no, she should actually earn her own money, maybe do manicure and pedicure for her wannabes in the hood. “Skippy’s Hair Salon for Upcoming Slay Queens”.

So recently she turned down a grey guy’s advances, right in front of me. Imagine! It was heartbreaking. As a man I could fully understand how the male cat felt. Being turned down by a hood’s slaying queen when you are in your best mood and suit isn’t the best thing to experience. The shocking bit was that the boy child had even the guts to approach our homestead. He came right to the door step. Such sacrifices. The struggles of a male child. So Skippy was sitting right there, listening to the pleas of the grey child, asking for her hand in an evening coffee out, not even in marriage. And after an hour of persuasions, all she could do is rub off some piece of dirt off her left fore leg-the little soil she got when the grey cat greeted her. Maybe this is what turned her off altogether. She simply can’t stand dirt, especially when it comes from interested parties. As the CEO of Skippy’s Hair Salon, she is right. Don’t you think so? After that she gave the dude a look that she usually gives people when saying “get a car, here are the directions to hell”.


I hope by the time I go back to Kenya she will have reconsidered her stand because I know the guy, dirty as he is, won’t give up on my daughter. I like his determination. When nature comes calling, it persists.

I will be sure to pick some matoke for her on my way out and maybe some perfume and a necklace. This kid loves beauty. She will jump up and down, dash to the grey dude and give him another look that says “Can you handle this?”

You know I can’t advice her on this, let her pursue her heart’s desires. I can only come in when she’s 27 and still in my house, single as ever.  Something I’m very afraid of right now.

Enough with Skippy, a little gossip about Mike won’t hurt. In my previous article, I was detailing how my visit to his workplace to see Keletso went on. Apparently Keletso isn’t just your late 30s kind of a lady, she also has a taste. A taste for coffee and African delicacies. Mike says she can comfortably cook a meal enough for a platoon of soldiers on their hungriest day. A rare cooking talent that every man desires in any lady, not just old women. Definitely Mike did not marry a woman because of her cooking ability. So I still insisted on knowing why I settled on the yellow borne. His answer was simple and clear, coming from a mouthful of white coffee, “When nature comes calling”.

Well, as it is the norm with my boy team, we have to accept the reality, bite the bullet, face the bull by the horns, and accept Keletso as our in-law. The ceremony will be up this coming weekend. I hope she won’t forget and starts playing the mother role, commanding us to all go to bed by 9pm. I’m not even sure how to dress or what vibes to give to her-basically I don’t know how I will handle her during the event.  I don’t even know whether to call her in-law, my lady, my lord, her majesty, madam, princes, mother, aunt, grandma to my cat, just not sure. Any suggestions? But I will go with Skippy, just to make her see how other women are faring on. Either way, Mike seems to have found love, what I don’t know is whether he will settle this time round. This is the millionth time we are formally introducing ourselves to a lady of his. Ugh, the struggle boys go through for their friends.  Basically nature came calling, and Mike responded. I’m happy. Will it last? My comment section all for you, as usual.

I will inform you how the get-together will go, and let’s hope Keletso doesn’t get drunk and start drama. We just a group of young (read old but unmarried) guys who don’t know how to handle mature drama.

For now, let me listen to what the speaker of Uganda’s National Parliament is saying at this conference. Get photos on Instagram: @kevlunzalu and follow us on Twitter: @W_ExpeditionsKE