Jan and James were invited to go as special guests on a unique adventure to Kenya by LEWA WILDLIFE CONSERVANCY, to work hands on with their researchers for 10 days and to also photograph the abundant species found on the property. Jan and James were particularly interested in the rare and endangered species the Conservancy has - primarily the Black Rhino and the Grevy's Zebra. They stayed next to the research station in a cottage and had full use of their own vehicle and driver. Being a naturalist, Jan was VERY excited about this opportunity to get "boots on the ground" in Africa and work shoulder to shoulder with the researchers and scientists to learn more about these magnificent creatures. There is also all the other wildlife one would expect to see in Northern Kenya: reticulated giraffe, Beisa oryx, elephant, cape buffalo, common zebra, lions and cheetahs. They were extremely excited to be able to spot rare Wild Dogs on their last day there!
Jan was "outfitted" for
her trip by FOXY HUNTRESS, a company which designs clothing for
woman outdoor adventurers.
The trip was March 1 - 10. Jan and James documented their adventure with photographs, journals and sketchbooks and of course ultimately studio paintings will be done, with the idea of giving lectures and presentations about the plight of these two endangered species and the work that LEWA is doing. Ultimately the goal will be to have a museum exhibition of Jan's paintings and James' photos as a fund raiser for LEWA. Negotiations are in the final stages with a major museum at this time with the exhibition tentatively planned for August 2010.
Founded in 1995, the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy (LWC) spans 62,000 acres and serves as a catalyst for conservation across northern Kenya. Lewa holds 12% of Kenya's black rhino population and the largest single population of Grevy's zebras in the world., Through the protection and management of endangered species, the initiation and support of areas in the value of wildlife, Lewa has become Kenya's leading model for wildlife conservation on private land, leading destination for low-impact conservation tourism, and leading catalyst for conservation, and its direct benefits for communities, across the region. The Conservancy is also home to the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT), an innovative partnership with a number of communities to the North who put land aside for wildlife conservation. www.lewa.org.