The Rothschild's giraffe was first named and described by Lord Walter Rothschild, a pasisonate zoologist and member of the Rothschild family. Lord Rothschild described his giraffe following an expedition to East Africa in the early 1900s.
The Rothschild's giraffe is sometimes also known as the Baringo giraffe or the Ugandan giraffe.
When first described by Lord Rothschild, the Rothschild's giraffe was free ranging and abundant accross Kenya, Uganda and Sudan.
Now extinct in Sudan, there are only thirteen populations of Rothschild's giraffe remaining in Uganda and Kenya. This is a result of human population expansion, poaching and habitat loss.
There are now fewer than 670 individuals remaining in the wild today.
There are three subspecies of giraffe found in Kenya; the Masaai giraffe, the Reticulated giraffe and the Rothschild's giraffe.
The Rothschild's giraffe is easily recognised and distinguised from other giraffe sub-species by its unique appearance.
The coat patches tend to be much less 'jagged' than the masaai giraffe and are found on a cream coloured background. Rothschild's giraffe are also quite light in colour. Their most defining feature however is that there are no markings found below the knees (as if they are wearing cream stockings), making the Rothschild's giraffe easy to recognise in the field.
With fewer than 670 individuals remaining in the wild, the future is uncertain for the Rothschild's giraffe.
The Rothschild's giraffe has already become extinct in Sudan and numbers are dangerously low in Kenya and Uganda. If we are to prevent this giraffe from going extinct then we urgently need effective conservation strategies. To do this, we need research and conservation planning
The Rothschild's Giraffe Project is carrying out this long overdue and urgent research, the results of which will help shape giraffe conservation in Kenya, and help secure a future in the wild for this Endangered giraffe subspecies.