It is Thursday morning and every one is up and ready to join hands together in building our nation. At A Rocha Kenya where I am on attachment we up for another day of conservation; particularly creating a better environment. Being a student of Tourism Management, my duty is mostly helping issue tickets at one of the ASSETS Eco-Tourism facilities; the tree platform at Gede Ruins. Thus I commence my day as usual and head to my place of work.
A phone call from the ASSETS Co-ordinator informs me that today I am supposed to join a group of community members planting mangroves at Sita, a village along the Mida creek; an activity that turns out to be the climax of my three weeks stay at A Rocha. It was fun!
It was here that I was to learn that mangroves are actually trees belonging to totally different families of plants and that traditionally they have medicinal value. The mangrove forest also creates a healthy fish and crustacean habitat. We planted approximately one thousand seedlings which took us less than one hour since we had a group of 15 people. The team effort exercised was fun! I however had quite some scary experiences; 1st walking on the soft, muddy ground with millions of tickling miniature shells. Some huge hermit crabs carrying shells twice their size was also quite breath-taking.
After the mangrove planting we visited a snake project which has been put up by the Sita community. Here we saw a number of different kinds of snakes including the African rock python, Puff adders, a spitting cobra and green mamba among others. The objective of this initiative is create awareness to the communities about the poisonous snakes and the harmless ones. It was indeed a fascinating, scary, fun and a very useful experience!