Kenya to Host Elephant Naming Festival in August

Elephants in a Kenyan park

As part of a campaign to celebrate the 2021 International Day for Elephants, Kenya has organized a festival to give names to elephants.

The event tagged Tembo Naing Festival is scheduled for August 12 and it will be held at Amboseli National Park, which is home to more than 3,000 elephants out of the country’s total population of more than 34,000.

People who signify interest in adopting an elephant would pay the conservation fund and then get a chance to name the elephant, Kenya’s tourism minister Najib Balala said on Tuesday.

The elephants’ second names will be given by elders from the Maasai community, based on the animals’ history and profile.

According to reports, the elephant naming event is an adaptation of a gorilla-naming ceremony. Kwita Izina, as the gorilla-naming ceremony is called, is held every September and has given the country’s tourism sector global recognition.

In May, Kenya began conducting its first national wildlife census aimed at aiding conservation and identifying threats to its wildlife. The exercise will run until July.

Expanding human settlements, a changing climate that makes resources scarcer, and poaching have all contributed to declines in wildlife populations.

Elephants are some of Kenya’s most vulnerable animals.

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