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Samburu National Reserve is located on the banks of the Ewaso Ng’iro river in Kenya; on the other side of the river is the Buffalo Springs National Reserve. It is 104 km² in size and 350 kilometers from Nairobi. Geographically, it is located in Samburu District of the Rift Valley Province.


Samburu National Reserve is located north of Nairobi, and was established in the 1970’s. Samburu Reserve is 40 square miles in size; temperature during the day is hot, but tends to cool during the night. This area of the region to this date is referred to as the Northern Frontier District because of the war in the 1960’s and early 70’s with the Somali people. Culturally, Northern Kenya has always had a strong influence of Somali, Oromo and Borana communities/tribes, who have lived as nomads in the area for many centuries.


Samburu National Reserve can be entered via the Ngare Mare and Buffalo Springs gates. Once inside the reserve, there are two mountains visible: Koitogor and Ololokwe. Samburu National Reserve is very peaceful and attracts animals because of River Uaso Nyiro (meaning “brown water” and pronounced U-aa-so-Nyee-ro) that runs through it and the mixture of acacia, riverine forest, thorn trees and grass vegetation. The Uaso Nyiro flows from the Kenyan highlands and empties into the famous Lorian Swamp. The natural serenity that is evident here is due to its distance from industries and the inaccessibility of the reserve for many years.


There is a wide variety of animal and bird life seen at Samburu National Reserve. Several species are considered unique to the region:

* Grevy’s Zebra
* Beisa Oryx
* Reticulated Giraffe
* Somali Ostrich

Other mammals frequently seen in the park include:

* African Elephant
* Lion
* Cheetah
* Gerenuk
* African Buffalo
* Grant’s Gazelle
* Kirk’s Dik-dik
* Impala
* Waterbuck

There are over 350 species of bird. These include:

* Kingfisher
* Sunbird
* Bee-eater
* Marabou Stork
* Tawny Eagle
* Bateleur
* Guinea fowl
* Palm-nut Vulture
* Vultures
Kakamega Forest

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