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Poachers Kill Kenya’s Only Female White Giraffe



The country’s only female white giraffe breathed its last on Tuesday after encountering a miserable death at the hands of poachers at the Ishaqbini Hirola Community Conservancy in Garissa County.

Mohammed Ahmednoor, the conservancy’s manager said that the poachers also killed the giraffe’s calf and only the animals’ skeletons could be found after a long search.

“This is a very sad day for the community of Ijara and Kenya as a whole. Her killing is a blow to the steps taken by the community to conserve rare and unique species and a wake-up call for continued support to conservation efforts,” Mr. Ahmednoor said in a dispatch.

The giraffe and its offspring were the only of their kind in the world and even invited global attention in 2017 when global media publications documented their existence.

Scientists attributed the whiteness to a condition called leucism, a condition that causes skin cells to produce no pigmentation.

“This is a long-term loss given that genetic studies and research which were a significant investment in the area have now gone down the drain,” said Mr. Ahmednoor “The white giraffe was a big boost to tourism in the area,”

In August 2019, it was announced that female white giraffe has given birth at the Ishaqbini Hirola Community Conservancy raising hopes that Kenya would be home to more white giraffes.

The birth of the male white calf brought to three the count of all known white giraffes in the country.

“After this incident, only a lone bull remains,” Mr. Ahmednoor said.

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