This is one of those truly heartwarming stories that helps restore your faith back in humanity.
Sheldrick Wildlife Trust are a non-profit conservation organization based in Kenya.Diria is an orphaned young zebra who came to the trust after its mother was killed by a pride of lions. The trust got straight to work taking care of him, just like a mother figure would.
“Baby zebras need to be able to recognize their mother from birth to survive,” says Rob Brandford, Executive Director of the trust.“To learn its mother’s stripes, a mother zebra will often separate herself and her baby from the herd so that the baby can imprint—essentially recognize and follow her coat, smell, and call. Once the calf can identify its mother, the duo will return to the herd.”
Unfortunately, Diria was without a mother, so it’s up to the workers to make sure she is raised properly.
“In the wild, calves will be raised by their mother alone but at our Reintegration Unit, it isn’t practical for a single individual to hand-raise Diria should they go on annual leave,” Brandford remarks.
“Therefore, to avoid this fragile new-born imprinting on one person, our Keepers don a specially made striped coat that Diria will recognize as his ‘mum,’ regardless of who is wearing it. A team of caregivers can give Diria the specialist 24/7 care he needs to give him the very best chance of survival.”
“The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is a not-for-profit and one of East Africa’s oldest and pioneering conservation organisations that has worked for the protection and conservation of wildlife and wild habitats in Kenya for over 40 years,” Amie, a representative from the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s explained.
“We know that during these uncertain times, it can be really difficult to consider donating to charity and conservation given the virus that is dominating the news right now. But our mission is to continue to protect and preserve wildlife in Kenya and in practice, that means caring for individuals like Diria, which is wholly funded by donations.
During these worrying times, we will need support more than ever to ensure that our activities continue. If anyone can’t donate, we completely understand and following us on social media would be amazing. We aim to continue to share all the success stories from the field made possible thanks to our supporters, many of which are feel-good.”