Rare white giraffes killed by poachers in Kenya

Bodies of the last female white giraffe and her calf were found by locals in eastern Kenya.

A handout image made available by the Ishaqbini Hirola Community Conservancy shows the rare white giraffe taken on May 31, 2017, in Garissa county in North Eastern Kenya. - Kenya''s only female white g
The rare giraffes had a condition called leucism, resulting in the partial loss of their pigmentation [File: AFP]

Kenya’s only female white giraffe and her calf have been killed by poachers, in a major blow for the rare animals found nowhere else in the world, conservationists said.

The bodies of the two giraffes were found by locals “in a skeletal state after being killed by armed poachers” in Garissa in eastern Kenya, the Hirola Community Conservancy said in a statement on Tuesday.

The conservancy added that the their deaths leave just one remaining white giraffe alive.

The poachers have not yet been identified by authorities. Animal rights activists had last spotted the mother and calf about a month ago.

The white giraffe was discovered in 2017 by the Hirola Conservation Program. The conservancy explained the rare animals had a condition called leucism, resulting in the partial loss of the giraffes’ pigmentation.

The last remaining white giraffe is a lone male, born to the same slaughtered female, the conservancy added.

“We are the only community in the world who are custodians of the white giraffe,” said Mohammed Ahmednoor, manager of the conservancy.

“The killing is a blow to tremendous steps taken by the community to conserve rare and unique species, and a wakeup call for continued support to conservation efforts.”

Source: News Agencies