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Another fire wipes out vegetation in Tsavo

Thursday July 23 2020
By LUCY MKANYIKA

Concerns are mounting over the surging cases of fire at Tsavo National Park after another fire destroyed thousands of acres of vegetation yesterday, coming barely a month after a similar inferno was reported in the area.

The fire is said to have started at Lualenyi Ranch that neighbours Tsavo West National Park and spread into the protected area.

Efforts by the ranch and Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) rangers to contain the huge blaze were thwarted by strong winds that spread flames rapidly to dry vegetation. 

Sources say the government had deployed resources to respond to the incidents but efforts to get official information from KWS were not successful.

"We managed to prevent the fire from spreading into Mwaktau village. However, the fire is still in the park," said local resident Balzatry Mwakulila.

By Thursday morning the bush fire continued to rage across huge tracts of land within the park.

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Tsavo has so far seen a record three fire incidents in a span of three months.

In May, an inferno destroyed more than 4,000 acres of vegetation in Tsavo East. A month later another fire consumed over 180 acres of the vast conservation area. 

The surge in incidents comes amid growing concerns over the short and long-term impact of the fires on vegetation and wildlife. 

Tsavo is inhabited by thousands of wildlife species including the big five.

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