Sunday, March 29, 2020

Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary

Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary (MES) is a community-owned elephant park, a conservation area for elephants and Encephalartos cycads in Kwale District of the Coast Province of Kenya.
It is home to Kenya’s big tuskers (Elephants), dry baobab bush land, the endemic cycad palm, blooming desert roses, diversity of butterflies, birds and monkey-eating crowned eagle.
Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary is located in East Africa, in the Kwale District of Kenya’s Coastal Province, and is a mere 45 kilometers southwest of Mombasa. The sanctuary has an area of 36 km², and it, along with the adjacent Shimba Hills National Reserve combine to form the Shimba Hills Ecosystem.
Mwaluganje is located in an ecosystem characterized by rolling hills, steep ridges, cliffs and winding water shades. A forested area of approximately 23,736 hectares, comprising of Shimba forest, Mkongani West, Mkongani North, and Mwaluganje forest, also surrounds it.
The Mwaluganje forest is part of the current sanctuary, and the beautiful Mwaluganje Travelers Tented Camp is in the forest reserve. The ecological attractions in Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary are diverse with scenic beauty such as the great natural forests, awe-inspiring cliffs and the warm blue Indian Ocean.
Other natural attractions are “God’s Bridge,” “Time Rock” and the traditional shrine that characterizes the sacredness of the community.
Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary was created in 1993 to conserve the serene surroundings, which house the rare and endangered African elephants, moist deciduous forest, riparian vegetation, and other special attractions available in the ecosystem.
The ecological attractions in Mwaluganje are diverse with scenic beauty such as the great natural forests, awe-inspiring cliffs and the warm blue Indian Ocean. Other natural attractions are “God’s Bridge,” “Time Rock” and the traditional shrine that characterizes the sacredness of the community.
Elephants Experience
Elephants are the main attraction at the sanctuary, and there are as many as 150 residing there. Mwaluganje is a historical bull area where independent elephant bulls grow in preparation for the demanding life of breeding males.
Their families live in the neighboring Shimba Hills Reserve and Mwaluganje forest. On occasion, family groups visit males during the mating season, or cross the sanctuary as they travel between feeding areas.
Once or twice a year, several related elephant families join up and travel as a unit of 200 females and calves (of all ages). They gather in the Shimba Hills and move into Mwaluganje during the rainy season (December, and March/April). Such large herds usually last for no longer than three to four days, and are consequently a rare and magnificent sight to see.