• The fire incident started on Saturday night and is affecting Northen part in Eburru area
• Rhino Ark estimates that 1,359.0775 acres have been destroyed in the Aberdares.
The fire ravaging part of Aberdares might be contained by Monday noon, this is according to Rhino Ark Charitable Trust.
Trust's Executive Director Christian Lambrechts told the Star on Monday morning that 35 trained firefighters had been airlifted to the scene on Monday morning and were deployed to the most threatening fire lines.
They are from Rhino Ark, Mount Kenya Trust, Kenya Forest Service and Kenya Wildlife Service.
“At least 550 hectares (1,359.0775 acres) of the Aberdares has been destroyed. We saw five distinct fires pointing to criminal activities. All fires started in the moorlands near the forest line,” he said.
Lambrechts said the Trust conducted a twice-daily aerial survey to prioritize and Global Positioning System to locate the fire lines where the teams should be sent.
“We also provided funds for rations,” he said.
"Any contributions towards food ratios, transportation and aerial support is most welcome. Go to M-PESA, paybill number 855995, account fire, then your name."
The fire incident happens days after the weather forecast warned that wildfires might strike again due to the dry season.
The latest weather forecast by the Kenya Meteorological Department showed Kenya's forests, parks and national reserves are at risk due to dry February weather.
“The expected dry conditions may result in dry land and vegetation cover. The public is advised to take caution and avoid activities which are likely to lead to the occurrence of wildfires in forests, parks and game reserves,” the Meteorological Department said.
The department has urged the Ministry of Environment and other stakeholders to take into consideration the likelihood of fires and put in place measures to conserve the environment.
In 2020, huge fires engulfed Tsavo National Park in what authorities said was a result of negligence and drought.
Ecologists said the mysterious bushfires that ravaged the Tsavo Conservation Area caused more harm than good to the biodiversity.
Rhino Ark has been undertaking conservation work at the larger Aberdares ecosystem.
The initial project idea subsequently evolved into a much more ambitious task of encircling the entire Aberdare Conservation Area with a game proof fence.
The fence, strong enough to resist elephant pressure, is powered by electricity to keep wildlife within and curb illegal log extraction, snaring and poaching of wildlife (especially rhino and the rare mountain bongo).
The fence construction work started in 1989 and was completed on 28 August 2009.
On March 12, 2010, the fence was formally commissioned by former President Mwai Kibaki.
The construction of the fence has brought harmony between wildlife and farmers around the Aberdare Conservation Area.
Over the years, Rhino Ark’s work has evolved towards seeking sustainable, long term solutions to the conservation challenges facing mountain forest ecosystems, and other areas of important biodiversity under threat.
In December 2010, Rhino Ark announced its formal commitment to supporting the conservation of other mountain forest ecosystems.
The initial areas of focus are Mount Kenya and Mau Mount Eburu.