This Kenyan man is responsible for keeping rhinos safe – 24 hours a day

 

Every morning, people around the world wake up to a daily routine. Clifford Naimodu wakes up to the responsibility of saving a species. Working as a ranger, he walks alongside rhinos while heavily armed, on guard for poachers. There’s an element of danger to the job but to Naimodu, it’s his way of defending the animal he loves most.

Naimodu works in the Maasai Mara wildlife conservancy located southwest of Nairobi. Although exact numbers are kept secret, Africa’s rhino population has been decimated by poaching in recent decades – and their numbers continue to dwindle. The Maasai Mara conservancy is dedicating its efforts to combating this by increasing surveillance and hiring trained individuals like Naimodu to be on the ground. The stakes are high. Rangers are often wounded or killed in conflict with poachers.

For Naimodu, it’s worth the risk. He has admired rhinos since he was young. His stone-cold face melts into a warm smile when he speaks about Koffi, one of the rhinos he protects. He cherishes him as a friend. And like any close friend, he will defend him to the last.