Maasai Mara Game Reserve on verge of losing its stature

Written By: Emily Kay Bade
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The sparkling Maasai Mara Game Reserve is under extreme threat of losing its prestige following months of drought that is ravaging most parts of the country.

The state of affairs in this world famous sanctuary is generating concern amongst tourism stakeholders and environmentalists over its long-term stature.

Climate change is not the only problem facing the park as increased human activity in the surrounding areas has led to drying up of river Mara forcing the animals away in effect leaving the vintage tourism paradise on a deathbed.

The Maasai Mara, is a game reserve that is famous for the wildebeest migration, a historic phenomenon now standing amongst the eight wonders of the world.

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Over the years the Masai Mara has provided one of the most spectacular ecosystems and possibly the world’s top safari big game viewing physical environment in Africa.

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But this famous landmark is standing at the precipice of losing its natural spark.

This is especially the case given that the major river that this animal sanctuary derives its lifeline is drying up.

As we criss-crossed the entirety of the park, it’s clear that the prolonged drought that has hit most parts of the country, in part, has had a major effect in the reserve. The locals, tourism stakeholders and environmentalists no longer sit pretty as the prevailing situation rages on.

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The worry of some residents is so profound. It is emanating from fears that the drying river Mara will impact its animal population, a critical ingredient that has stimulated its tourism prospects over the years.

What’s more, the environmentalists argue that it may no longer be the case of  IF but when the colossus that is Mara river will be annihilated.

When and if this were to happen, experts hold the view that it will deliver a huge blow to the Masai Mara Game Reserve impacting negatively on the country’s tourism sector.

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Already, minimal flow of water in the Mara river has affected the magnitude of wildebeest migration as witnessed last year.

Yet this is not the only disaster in waiting as the continued existence of hundreds of thousands of pastoralists, farmers and many others who heavily rely on the resource is on the line.

The situation has been made even direr by increased human activity in the nearby water catchment areas like the Mau.

Locals have blamed this on encroachment on the forest. They want all water catchments cleared of all human occupation as one way of redeeming the Mara.

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