The Plight of Kenya’s Warthogs

Tom Butynski inspecting a dry river bed in Turkana for warthog footprints. Photograph by Yvonne de Jong.

Two species of warthog occur in Kenya, the common warthog (Phacochoerus africanus) and the desert warthog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus). The desert warthog is one of Africa’s least-known large mammals. In our previous blog posts, we presented findings from our project not only for the warthogs, but also for several other species. This project has now come to an end. This blog post, then, provides a brief overview of our “Quest for Kenya’s Desert Warthog.

Tom Butynski inspecting a dry river bed in Turkana for warthog footprints (Photo by Yvonne de Jong)

Together, northern and central Kenya support vast areas of desert, savannah, lava rock plain, sparsely wooded grassland, shrubland, and patches of mid-altitude forest and montane forest. In the area covered by this survey (no less than 128,000 sq. km), all of these ecosystems are represented. The altitude ranges from 260 m above sea level (Kora National Park, Tana River County) to 3,060 m asl (Cherangani Hills, Trans Nzoia County). Due to security issues in northern Kenya, few ground surveys of the larger mammals have been conducted in the past. For this same reason, we were somewhat restricted in our movements through the region and we had to avoid northeastern —> Read More Here


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