Attractions in Nairobi National Park Kenya
Attractions in Nairobi National Park, what to see in Nairobi Park, Activities in Nairobi Park Kenya, Wildlife Safaris Tours in Nairobi Park, Game drive safari, Bird watching Tour, Nairobi Safari Walk. Nairobi National Park is found in Kenya which is located in the eastern region of the African continent along geographical co-ordinates 1o22’24” S 36o51’32” E. Nairobi National Park is uniquely located as its only 7km away from Nairobi city Kenya’s capital. Its bordered by Nairobi city in the north, Jomo Kenyatta international airport in the east, Oloolua forest in the west, and Tuala area in the south.
Nairobi National Park experiences a dry savannah climate characterized by 2 rain seasons that come in November and December with short rains and march to may with longer rains. During this time Nairobi National Park experiences a minimum of 25oc or 77of and a maximum of 28oc or 82of. The dry season comes around in the month January- February and also in June – September and October. During this time, temperatures range from a minimum of 12oc or 54of especially in the wee hours of the morning to a maximum of 26oc or 75of during afternoon hours.
Nairobi National Park is famous for its diverse wildlife species that includes mammals such as giraffes, hippos, buffaloes, zebras, wildebeest, lions, cheetahs, and hyenas, east black rhinos, waterbucks and baboons. Bird species that call this park home include black headed heron, blacksmith lapwing, long tailed fiscal, ostrich, Abyssinian thrush, grey crowned crane, hartlaub’s bustard, kori bustard, martial eagle, secretary bird, white headed vulture, white bellied bustard, sooty falon, fischer’s lovebird.
Conservation in Nairobi National Park can be traced back to 1932, when conservationist meryvn cowie came back to Nairobi only to find this beautiful eco system disappearing as a result of tits close proximity to the ever growing urban town Nairobi, he made his personal mission to see to it that the colonial government gets to commit itself towards protecting this fragile eco system and in 1946, his tireless efforts paid off when Nairobi was designated a national park hence it became kenya’s first national park.
Nairobi national park continually faces challenges due to its close proximity to civilization and modernity as Nairobi city is only 7km away and its always expanding in all sides to the point that when you are in this park you can gaze at the Nairobi skyline almost from point blank range. This simply means that wildlife- human conflicts a real day to day challenge here. Not all hope is lost though because the Kenya Wildlife Services endavours to see to it that wildlife still thrives here regardless of its geo- location.
Tourist Safari Attractions in Nairobi National Park Kenya
Wildlife as Attractions in Nairobi National Park
Cape buffalo in Nairobi National Park Kenya
The cape buffalo is also referred to as the African buffalo and they are a very common sight throughout this park. It is usually mistaken to be a close relative to domesticated cattle but its rather related to actually other bigger bovines. Buffaloes have a coarse black coat unlike their close relatives the forest buffaloes which have a reddish coat. As the male buffaloes grow older, the bases of their horns grows closer and it can even unite forming a feature called a “boss” which is very had to penetrate even with a gun bullet of less 16mm. you can differentiate a male buffalo from a female one by observing the structure of their horns, the male buffalo horns grow while curving outwards while the ones of the female grow while curving inside.
The African buffalo is a big animal with a shoulder height of 1.0-1.7m or 3.3-5.6ft. it has a body length of 1.7-3.4m or 5.6-11.2ft and its tail has a length of 70-110cm or 28-43in. An adult male African buffalo can weigh as much as between 500-1000kg but the females usually weigh less than this. Cape buffaloes are usually found in the great plains of African savanna like Murchison falls park. Buffaloes usually stay in large herds that consist anywhere from 5-100 individuals and this is primarily for protection purposes from their predators.
Although buffaloes have a very poor eye sight, this is compensated by possessing an acute sense of smell coupled with a keen sense of hearing, in fact, the buffaloes can stop whatever they are doing and stand still for many minutes or sometimes even hours just to listen even to the tiniest of sounds that may be made by any predator that may be stalking them. when buffaloes are attacked, they male buffaloes form defensive wall by being at the flanks of the herd while the females and calves are within the inner part of the herd. the male buffaloes can even sometimes turn and chase the attacking predators They have a gestation period of 11.5 months and a life span of over 25 years in their natural habitats.
Hyenas in Nairobi National Park Kenya
Hyenas are closely related to canines in terms of behavior and body structure as both hyenas and other canines kill most of their prey using their teeth than their claws. They have a wolf like body structure with their fore limbs being longer than the hind limbs and the entire hind quarters are visibly lower and the back slopes downwards towards their rumps. There are two different species of hyenas i.e. spotted hyenas and striped hyenas. Hyenas can be identified from their body structure that is they have large ears, they have thick fur that is coarse and sparse and poorly developed on their underbelly. Spotted hyena exhibits sexual dimorphism with males being large than females while striped hyenas exhibit reversed sexual dimorphism with females being larger than males.
Spotted hyenas are more of hunters while striped hyenas like to scavenge from kills made by other predators. Even though in human society, hyenas are depicted as cowardly animals, this isn’t entirely true as these animals have been widely documented chasing off big and fierce predators like lions and leopards from their kills and have the kill for themselves, this doesn’t strike as an act of cowardice by any means. Usually hyenas are nocturnal animals but they have can also be seen in the morning hours doing their hunting and stocking rounds. Hyenas have a set of 9 teeth comprising of mainly canines.
Wildebeest in Nairobi National Park Kenya
The wildebeests are members of the antelope group and belong to the connochaetes genus. In east Africa they are 2 closely related wildebeests and that is the blue wildebeest and the black wildebeest but the blue wildebeest is the most common one in the Serengeti plains. These two species can be identified basing on few things like their coat colors and also on the nature of their horns, the blue wildebeest horns protrude to the side then curve downward before curving upwards as they come to an end, the horns of black wildebeests on the other hand curve forward first then downwards and finally upwards as they come to their tips.
The blue wildebeests also bigger than the black wildebeests, the male blue wildebeests weigh about 250kg with a standing height of 150cm, female blue wildebeest stand at 135cm at the shoulders and weigh around 180kg while the male black wildebeest stand between 112-120cm at shoulder height and weigh 180kg and their female counterparts stand in at 108cm at the shoulders with a body weight of 155kg. These wildebeests are famous for their annual migration that takes place from June- august. This migration involves these animals to trek great distances about 1500 of kilometers as they cross from the southern Serengeti plains into the southern parts of the Maasai Mara reserve in southern in Kenya.
This migration is majorly done following the rainfall season patterns in the east African region. During these migrations, the wildebeest organize themselves in large herds and trek in this group to areas of new pastures. These animals also show a high level of swarm intelligence as they perform similar function without anyone or anything dictating it to them for example, they can all decide to cross the river from the same spot regardless of whether it is infested with many predators like crocodiles or not.
Masai giraffe in Nairobi National Park Kenya
Masai giraffe can be distinguished from other giraffe sub species from their star-like stamped patches which are irregular and become darker especially in males as they age. The Masai giraffe is generally brown in colour with several shades of colour which can range from dried oak to orange and cream. The lower parts of their limbs are sticky like or very skinny but the upper parts of these limbs are study so as to support their massive weight. The giraffes have a unique walking pattern where as they have the ability to move both the front and hind limbs of one side of the body at once and then counter balance it by moving their long neck in the opposite direction.
The adult male giraffe has an average height of 4.3-5.7m or 14.1-18.7ft and weighs in at 1192kg or 2628ib while an adult female weighs in at 828kg or 1825ib hence showing sexual dimorphism amongst giraffes. The giraffe also has a long tongue that is measured at an average of 45cm or 18in and it has a purplish black color which is believed to protect it from sunburns. The massai giraffes have the longest tail among all land mammals which measures up to 3.3ft long. Due to their big body mass giraffes also have a massive heart that weighs up to 25ibs so as to pump 60 litres of blood needed to move around the giraffe’s body in just one minute.
Giraffes also have the ability to sleep while standing and even when they lie down, they will put their long neck on their hip. The Masai giraffe are completely herbivores and spend their biggest part of the day about 16-20 hours feeding so as to satisfy their big appetites. The giraffe has a gestation period of 14-15 months and the birth period is between 1-6 hours after which a single calf is born and the mother will give birth while standing hence the calf will have to be ready for a rough landing when it comes out. The calves are born almost ready to walk because it takes a calf between 20 minutes – 1 hour to start walking. Masai giraffes have a life span of up to 25 years in their natural habitat.
Lions in Nairobi National Park Kenya
These can be easily sighted in Nairobi National Park on a good day. Lions are part of the big cate family and are muscular, deep chested with rounded heads. Most of the African lion males can distinguished from their females by the presence of a mane around the necks and heads of male African lions which is clearly absent in females but there quite many cases in Africa where the males also don’t have a mane or have a very short and thin one.
The male lions are usually bigger than the females but their sizes vary according to location. In east Africa, adult female lions have a body length of 160-184cm or 63-72in weighing in at 119.5kg or 263Ib on average while the adult males have a body length of 184-208cm or 72-82in weighing in at 174.9kg or 386Ib on average. Lions are social animals who live in groups called prides. A pride is always led by a dominant male and their highly territorial animals controlling vast expanses that are strategic with a lot of prey and water.
Male dominant lions are responsible for protecting the pride and they will fight off other male invaders, in case the dominant male is defeated by the invading lions, the victor lions will kill off all the cubs that are off springs to the defeated dominant male as a way of ending its blood lineage. Lions are carnivores and are at the top of the food chain feeding on almost all browsers and grazers within their domain due to their ability to hunt as a pride and carry out well coordinated and planned attacks which enables them to take down prey that can even be between 2-4 times bigger than them such as zebras, elephants and buffaloes.
Lions usually hunt at night because of their well-developed sense of sight especially at night where their vision is almost 6 times better than that of humans due to the presence of white patches around their eyes which enable them to absorb even the smallest amount of light available during the cover of darkness. Hunting among lions is an affair carried out by female lions mostly and juvenile males and when a kill has been made by the lionesses in a pride, it’s always the dominant male lion who will eat first up to his fill then the rest of the pride will feed on what has remained after the he has finished eating. They have a gestation period of 97 days and a life span of about 10-14 years.
Birds in Nairobi National Park in Kenya
These include black headed heron, blacksmith lapwing, long tailed fiscal, ostrich, Abyssinian thrush, grey crowned crane, hartlaub’s bustard, kori bustard, martial eagle, secretary bird, white headed vulture, white bellied bustard, sooty falcon, Fischer’s lovebird.
Hartlaub’s bustard: This bird has a similar look like a bellied bustard but greyer and more clearly marked in the lower back with blackish tail. Their heads are small sitting on a long neck and a bulky body with large legs. This bird has a body weight of 1.5-1.6kg. this bird makes a voice call with a “tok” sound.
Ostriches: The ostrich is the biggest bird on the planet and in Kenya it can be found in Nairobi National Park. Ostrich feathers are usually black with white primaries and a tail. Their heads have thin hairs which makes them seem bare when observed from a distance. The ostriches’ heads are small in relation to their enormous body size the legs of ostriches are long and strong capable of producing a stride of 3-5mand can reach a top speed of 70km/hr making them the fastest running birds on ground. These birds have a wing span of about 2m or 6ft7in and a wing chord of 90cm or 35in.
Ostriches have a body weight of 63-145kg or 139-320ib. Mature male ostriches can have a body height of 2.1-2,8m or 6ft11in-9ft2in while the female ostriches have average height that ranges between 1.7-2.0m or 5ft7in-6ft7in. The chicks of ostriches have the ability to grow by 25cm or9.8in per month during their 1st year of growth. Ostriches have long legs and neck to give them that outstanding body height of 2.8m or 9ft. Ostriches live in herds of between 5-20 birds, the male ostriches compete for mating rites by building ground nesting, dancing and display of their feathers, the females will only allow to mate with the alpha male. The main female ostrich lays between 6-11 eggs will other females in the herd lay about 6 eggs and these are the biggest eggs in the world with an average diameter of about 15cm and an average weight of 1-1.5kg per egg. The female and males take turns to incubate the eggs which do hatch after about 40 days of incubation. ostriches have a life span of about 40-45 years.
Grey crowned crane: This is one of the most elegant birds you will ever encounter while you are on your east African adventure. This bird falls under the crane family of the gruidae. This is a relatively tall bird standing at a height of 1m or 3.3ft, a wingspan of 2m or 6.5ft and an average body weight of 3.5kg or 7.7ib. This bird can easily be identified given its distinctive color patterns that include black, yellow and red and grey. These cranes have white cheeks, black head top, a red gular sac, it has a crown made of grey stiff feathers, this crane has a grey plumage with white wing coverts, black flight feathers, it has long legs that are black and a slender, perfect for balance rather than defence. The legs are used for wading through tall grasses.
These cranes have a very interesting courtship ritual display which they perform through dancing, bowing, jumping by the courting pairs. After this display, these birds will stay together for life. This bird is quite elegant, friendly and peaceful and that’s why they feature as one of the national symbols of the republic of Uganda appearing on its coat of arms and the national flag whose colour patterns of black yellow and red were inspired by the colors of this crane. This bird is also a totem symbol for Rwanda’s royal clan. The grey crown cranes are strongly embedded in the cultures of the Kigezi highlands natives both in Uganda and Rwanda because these people view these birds as the epitome symbol of loyalty, everlasting love and devotion, virtues that humans can easily relate to.
For these reasons and many more, the dwellers of these highlands have incorporated these birds in their cultures for example these people believe that these cranes can bring rains hence rain makers in this part of the world will imitate the sounds and dances of the cranes as way of praying for the rains to come soon. People who are looking for better marriage relationships will eat the grey crown eggs and stew of crane feathers. It has been reported that eggs are crashed and mixed with other herbs to make love portions to improve marriages.
The grey crown cranes are the best natural time keepers in this part of the world as they wake up as early as 3am or 0300hrs and make a honking sound call by inflating its gular sac after every hour that passes hence kids in this area will only need to hear the calls of these birds to wake up and prepare for school, trust me!! these kids are never late for school because of their best and always on time keeper.
White headed lapwing: This is an easily identifiable bird given its unique look of a majorly grey head with a white crown and fore neck, yellow wattles, beak that ends with a black tip, its legs are also yellow. This bird has white and black patterns on the upper parts especially on its tail and wings. Its under parts are mainly white. This bird has a body length of 28-32cm and an average body weight 161-214g. this bird has single high pitched, ringing and often repeated “pew” sound. This bird feeds mainly on beetles, ants, mantids, mutillid wasps, worms and crustaceans.
White headed vulture: This vulture has a pink beak legs and a white crest with pale featherless areas. this vulture has a dark brown plumage on the upper parts with black tail feathers. Its under side is cover in white featyhers. This bird has a body length 72-85cm or 28-33in. wingspan of 207-230cm or 81-91in and a body weight of 4.7k or 10ib for females while males come in short with 4 kg or 8.8 ib hence a reversed sexual dimorphism.
Fischer’s loverbird: This bird has its head in an olive-green color coat, its beak is short, curved and red in color. This bird has a white eye ring around its dark eyes. Its back, wings and chest are green while its tail feathers are blue or purple on the upper side. This is generally small love bird with a body length of 14cm and a weight of 43-58g. due to gene mutations, many a times a color variation can be observed in some off spring species of this bird. These birds have a life span of up to 20 years.
Sooty falcon: The adult sooty falcon has a blue grey plumage with pointed wings long tail and slim body. They have a dark trailing edge at the wings and tail differentiates it from the hobby falcon and Eleonora’s falcon. The young sooty falcons are quite large for their age looking similar to a large juvenile hobby falcon. They a body length of 32-37cm with a matching wingspan of 78-90cm. these are mainly birds of prey, preying on large insects like dragon flies with a unique feeding cultural of transferring its prey from the talons to its mouth to eat it while in mid-flight.
Ivory Burning Site Monument in Nairobi National Park-Kenya
Ivory Burning Site Monument in Nairobi National Park-Kenya; This is one of the most important landmarks in the archives of conservation, this is where Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi made a dramatic statement to poachers by setting ablaze to 12 tons of seized ivory in 1989. The event improved Kenya’s conservation image at a time when East African wildlife was being decimated by relentless poaching, and it’s widely credited as playing a role in turning the tide against poaching in Kenya. The site is just inside Nairobi National Park’s main Langata Rd gate.he Animal Orphanage in Nairobi national Park-Kenya
he Animal Orphanage in Nairobi national Park-Kenya
The Nairobi Animal Orphanage is just inside the Nairobi National Park in Kenya. The orphanage is a treatments and rehabilitation center for wild animals. The Orphanage is a hospital to lions, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, serval cats, rare Sokoke cats, warthogs, leopards, various monkeys, baboons and buffalo. Various birds can also be viewed including parrots, guinea fowls, crowned cranes and ostriches.
Spacious accommodating Picnic sites like Mokoyiet, King Fisher, historic ivory burning site and Impala; For corporate events, bush dinners, weddings, picnics, team building sessions, video and film production. Large predators- lion, leopard, hyena and cheetah. Aggregations of large herbivores- eland, buffalo, zebra and wildebeest
Activities in Nairobi National Park in Kenya
Game drives in Nairobi National Park
Nairobi National Park-Kenya game viewing safari tour is a half day safari to see and spot wildlife in the Park. You will be provided with and experienced driver guide and a wonderful built safari vehicle with a pop-up roof designed to give you a panoramic outlook of the landscape and unobstructed views of the animals, a feature that is especially valuable for photographers. A dedicated prime safari guide, with experience and knowledge about the park takes you to locations where you have the greatest chance of seeing the animals, and to stay on top of the action, your guide shares and garners information, such as footprints, last sightings, specific behaviors, with other preferred like-minded guides.
You will be able to sight some of the big five animals in Nairobi National Park-Kenya including; the lions, rhino, buffalo, leopard, giraffes, hippos, zebra, gazelles, hartebeest, wildebeest, hyena, baboons, elands and many others. Rhinos are especially easy to see since this park acts as their sanctuary. The lions are more than 80 and are also very easy to see in a morning game drive even while they lie on the road or when hunting.
Game drives in Nairobi are a rewarding encounter as you get to meet and greet with your eyes not hands some of Africa’s wilderness finest mammals like giraffes, hippos, buffaloes, zebras, wildebeest, lions, cheetahs, and hyenas, east black rhinos, waterbucks and baboons.
Birding in Nairobi National Park
Nairobi National Park-Kenya bird trip is fun as you will get an expert guide to show you the birds with the help of a bird identification book and a pair of binoculars. Nairobi National Park has a checklist of over 520 species of avifauna. One of the eight species of Kenya Mountains Endemic Bird Area, 27 species of the 94 Somali–Maasai biome, and 25 species of the 67 African Highlands biome that occur in Kenya have been recorded in the area.
Over 5,000 migrating Lesser Falcons have been recorded in the park. The park`s undisturbed grassland is also home to species like restricted-range Jackson’s Widowbird, which breeds here regularly after good rains. The world endangered Corncrake, Madagascar Pond-Heron, Lesser Kestrel, Corncrake, Jackson’s Widowbird, Red-throated Tit, Shoebill Stork and Basra Reed Warbler have been spotted. Prime safaris will help you to arrange a half day or full day trip to Nairobi National Park in Kenya to watch birds.
Birding in Nairobi National Park is a birder’s frenzy given its array of bird species that habituate in this national park. A birders trip to Nairobi National Park should culminate into a sight of bird species like black headed heron, blacksmith lapwing, long tailed fiscal, ostrich, Abyssinian thrush, grey crowned crane, hartlaub’s bustard, kori bustard, martial eagle, secretary bird, white headed vulture, white bellied bustard, sooty falcon, fischer’s lovebird.
Nature walks in Nairobi National Park
The Nairobi Safari Walk is an ordinary zoo located near the main entrance to the Nairobi National Park on Langata Road, about 7 km south of Nairobi city center. The Nairobi Safari Walk is an eye opener to Kenya`s wildlife and gives you a hint of what you expect to see across Kenya. You will have a glance of Kenya`s wildlife collection including the rare bongo, white rhino, albino zebra, antelopes, cats and primates. It is also a home to about 150 trees species and you will be taught about their traditional uses. The zoo gives you great experience, diversity of the wild animals in one place and a remarkable scenery where you comfortably walk, take photos and enjoy the breeze. The Nairobi Safari walk is an awesome activity you can never miss in Kenya, a very romantic scenery. The Zoo is also good for kids to learn about the wildlife. Missing is risky!
Nature walks are one way of the best ways to explore this national park given its gentle land scape making it easy for you to traverse this park on foot. You will definitely appreciate the diversity of nature here while on a nature walk as you will be in a prime position to see most of the natural ingredients that make up this eco system in action from point blank range as they go about their business.
Accessing Nairobi National Park in Kenya
Nairobi National Park can be accessed by mainly road as its only 9km or 5miles from Nairobi city Kenya’s capital. This will be basically a short trip and very comfortable as all roads to the park are tarmacked roads. A visit to this part of the world will likely lead you to Jomo Kenyatta international airport which is found 15km or 9miles out of Nairobi city Kenya’s capital. The other airport is Moi international airport in Mombasa.
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