15 need-to-know things about Kenya

  1. Kenya is an incredibly safe country for foreign visitors. Travelers may attract attention from beggars and potential pickpockets. Don’t be afraid to explore your boundaries – just be take caution.
  2. Kenya has six recognized UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • The Sacred Kaya Forest in South Coast
  • Lamu Old Town
  • Fort Jesus, Mombasa
  • Kenya‘s Lake Systems.
  • Lake Turkana National Parks.
  • Mount Kenya National Park.
  1. The National anthem, adopted in 1963 is based on a traditional Kenyan (Pokomo) folk song.
  2. Machakos was the first administrative Centre for the British colony, but they moved the capital of Kenya to Nairobi in 1899 since Machakos by-passed the Uganda Railway that was under construction.
  3. Many classic adventure films were shot on location in Kenya, including The Snows of M.t Kilimanjaro and Out of Africa.
  4. That Treetops Hotell is where the then Princess Elizabeth of England was staying with her husband (then Philip Mount batten, but now Prince Philip) when her father, the then King died. She then became queen while in Kenya.
  5. The Majority of the people in Kenya are Protestants with Christians making for almost 85% of the population.
  6. Kenya has the sixth highest population in sub-Saharan Africa, behind Tanzania, South Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia and Nigeria.
  7. Kenya hosts one of the “7 wonders of the world” – the annual wildebeest migration in Masai Mara.
  8. That Homo Erectus, also called “Turkana boy”, predecessor of man, was discovered in the Koobi Fora national park, close to lake Turkana, by Richard Leakey.
  9. Kenya has 65 National parks and reserves specifically allocated as protected areas for wildlife conservation. These comprise of 23 terrestrial National Parks, 28 terrestrial National Reserves, 4 marine National Parks, 6 marine National Reserves and 4 national sanctuaries.
  10. Giant crocodile fossils have been discovered in Kenya dating from the Mesozoic Era, over 200 million years ago found during an excavation conducted by a team from the University of Utah and the National Museums of Kenya at Lokitaung Gorge, near Lake Turkana.
  11. The first inhabitants of present-day Kenya were hunter-gatherer groups, akin to the modern Khoisan speakers.
  12. Kenya has a cheaper of traveling to Mombasa from Nairobi which is through new established high-speed train which runs everyday. However, tickets need to be booked in advance.
  13. Kenya has had 4 presidents.

 

 

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Common Baboon

Baboons are the world’s largest monkeys weighs about 22-37 Kgs and are the most identifiable. They have tufts of hair on either side of their face and large, hairless bottoms that can turn red. They also don t have prehensile tails like some other monkeys which means they do don’t use their tail like a hand.

Baboons are found in Africa and Arabia inhabiting savannas others semi-arid habitats and can sometimes be found in tropical forests. Unlike other monkeys, baboons stay on the ground much of the time though eat, sleep or keep watch in trees.

Baboons are very social. They are troops while in groups and can contain dozen to a hundred members. Young baboons in the troop will also play together. A dominant male usually runs the troops. Males are usually ranked in dominance by age and size while female are usually ranked by birth order

They are omnivores and eat a wide array of meats and plants. Typical foods in a baboon’s diet include grasses, fruits, seeds, roots, barks, rodents, birds and the young of antelope.

When a female baboon is ready to mate, her bottom becomes swollen and red as a sign to the males. After mating, baboon female  has a gestation period of around six months

Common Baboon

Baboons are the world’s largest monkeys weighs about 22-37 Kgs and are the most identifiable. They have tufts of hair on either side of their face and large, hairless bottoms that can turn red. They also don t have prehensile tails like some other monkeys which means they do don’t use their tail like a hand.

Baboons are found in Africa and Arabia inhabiting savannas others semi-arid habitats and can sometimes be found in tropical forests. Unlike other monkeys, baboons stay on the ground much of the time though eat, sleep or keep watch in trees.

Baboons are very social. They are troops while in groups and can contain dozen to a hundred members. Young baboons in the troop will also play together. A dominant male usually runs the troops. Males are usually ranked in dominance by age and size while female are usually ranked by birth order

They are omnivores and eat a wide array of meats and plants. Typical foods in a baboon’s diet include grasses, fruits, seeds, roots, barks, rodents, birds and the young of antelope.

When a female baboon is ready to mate, her bottom becomes swollen and red as a sign to the males. After mating, baboon female  has a gestation period of around six months

Black- backed Jackal

A fox-like canid with a slender bod, long legs and large ears. It is similar to the closely related side-striped jackal and more distantly related to the golden jackal, through its skull and dentition are more robust and the incisors much shaper. Weighs 6-13 and stands 38-48cm. It inhabits open areas with little dense vegetation, though it occupies a wide range of habitats from arid coastal desert, savanna and area with more than 2000mm of rainfall.

Black –backed jackal are omnivores which feed on invertebrates such as beetles, grasshoppers, crickets, termites, millipedes, spiders and scorpion. They also feed on mammals such as rodents, hares and young antelopes

The black-backed jackal is a monogamous and terrestrial animal whose social organization greatly resembles that of the golden jackal. However, the assistance of elder offspring in helping raise the pups of their parents has a greater bearing on pulp survival rates than in the latter species. The basic social unit is a monogamous mated pair which defend its territory through laying feces and urine on range boundaries.

Scent making is usually done in tandem and the pair aggressively expels intruders. Such encounters are normally prevented, as the pair vocalizes to advertise its presence in a given area. The mating season takes place from late May to August, with a gestation period of 60 days.  b

Gradually loses its fur as it ages

African wild dog is the bulkiest and most solidly built of African canids. It weighs 20-25kgs and female are generally smaller than males. Compared to members of the genus canis, the African wild dog is lean and tall with out-sized ears and lacking dewclaws. The middle two toe-pads are usually fused. Its dentition also differs from that of canis by the degeneration of the last lower molar, the narrowness of the canine and proportionately large premolars which are the largest relative to body size of any carnivore other than hyenas.

Africa wild dog is mostly found in savanna and arid zones generally avoiding forested areas

The fur of the African wild dog differs significantly from that of other canids, consisting entirely of stiff bristle-hair with no underfur. It gradually loses its fur as it ages with older specimens being almost naked. Colour variation is extreme and may serve in visual identification as African wild dog can recognize each other at distances.

African wild dog has very strong social bonds, stronger than those of sympatric lion and spotted hyenas, thus solitary living and hunting are extremely rare in the species. It lives in permanent packs consisting of two to 26 adults and yearling pups. Male and female have separate dominance hierarchies with the latter usually being led by the oldest female. Males may be led by the oldest male but these can be supplanted by younger specimens.

African wild dog is a specialised pack hunter of common medium sized antelope. Small prey such as rodents, hare, and birds are hunted singly with dangerous such as can rats and porcupines being killed with a quick and well placed bite to avoid injury

Stand up to lions when confronted

Banded Mongoose males are heavier than females during immature stages. In adulthood both sexes are similar in size and mass weighing about 1.5kg. It is characterized by a triangular shaped, pointed faces and flat broad ears. They have long bushy tails and a long coarse coat. Colouration is greyish-brown with an unmistakable series of light and dark vertical bands across the back and flank. Under parts are lighter with elegant dark legs.

Banded mongoose lives in permanent and cohesive packs of between 6-40 individuals, consisting of on average 15 adults with their offspring.

Diet constitute of invertebrates particularly beetles and termites and occasionally can also take larger prey such as rodents and snakes. Refuge dumps are often scavenged for edible titbits. Banded mongoose also feed on eggs of ground nesting birds and reptiles. 2-8 young are born in midsummer and are bling and partly-haired. The eyes open after about 10 days. Are known to stand up to lions when they are confronted and threatened.

Large Spotted Genet has long legs with elongated body . The tail is thick black and whitish-grey ringed. Claws are short partially retractable and are an aid to climbing. No sexual dimorphism is obvious. Rows of rusty spots enclosed with black rings cover the brown or tan upper part

The Large Spotted Genet can be confused with the small spotted genet, the main difference being the white tipped tail of the latter compared to the black spots of the small spotted genet which are without a rust center

Breeding takes place during warmer months where they give birth to an average of three young per litter after a gestation period of about 70 days. Large spotted genet is solitary only occurring in groups during the mating season. Well wooded and watered areas are preferred habitats particularly forest and closed woodlands. Some dense vegetation for shelter and close proximity water are essential habitat requirements.

The diet consists of rodents and other small mammals such as insectivore, whereas birds, snakes and amphibians are secondary prey.