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The much anticipated second annual Lion Guardian games took place on the sweeping plains of Ol Donyo Wuas. With the mood and expectations high, the Lion Guardians were first instructed on the program for the games and the rules governing each event. The first event, the 100 meter dash was breathtaking! After several qualification heats, Lopono Lempunit from Eselenkei emerged victorious, beating Samanya, who came in second, by almost 10 seconds!

Lopono after his victorious 100 meter dash

Lopono after his victorious 100 meter dash

Stick throwing was won by Kamunu Saitoti, also from Eselenkei, after a neck to neck with Maen Koole from Southern Olgulului. The previous winner of this event, Lenkai Nkiinti and his rival Timoine Olamayiani were eliminated before the final.

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Kamunu exhibiting his excellent stick throwing skills!

When it came to the Morans (the Masai Warriors) testing their skills in spear throwing accuracy, Kutata Mutenkere from Eselenkei emerged the winner amidst ululation from his colleagues and admiration from every one present.

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Kutata spear throwing

Distance spear throwing was the next event on order for the day. The young diminutive Mingati Makarot from Mbirikani proved to all that strength and skills are not related to size and age as he scooped one of the most coveted prizes by beating a talented field of older, able bodied Morans.

Mingati with a look of determination just before he let his spear fly

Mingati with a look of determination just before he let his spear fly

Olgulului scooped the football award as a consolation after beating Mbirikani in the final before a sizeable crowd of cheering funs.

Once all the events were completed special awards were given to individual Lion Guardians recognizing outstanding performances for their consistency, knowledge of lion movement, number of quality reports submitted, hard work, reliability, biggest impact created, conflict mitigation, number of lost livestock and young herders found in the bush, and for doing special things above and beyond the call of duty.

The prizes and awards were presented to the winners in a glittering ceremony at the foot of the Chyulu Hills by Lion guardian Director Dr. Leela Hazzah and Soila Sayliale of Amboseli Elephant Trust along with invited guest and MPT senior staff represented by senior Co-coordinator Daniel Ole Sambu. After several encouraging speeches and praise of their hard work, Guardians celebrated their victory by singing and dancing, followed by the consumption of expertly roasted goat meat at our main camp. In conclusion, these games were even more successful than the previous edition both in competitiveness, attendance and prizes given. Above all, the spirit exhibited by the Guardians during the competition made many envious of their work. We would like to extend our thanks to all of you for making it a success!

The Lion Guardians

The Lion Guardians

We would like to extend our thanks again to Kate, Anna, Jacqueline, Sylvia, Marianne, Brenton, Patti Eugene and all of the BIGCATS texters. Also to Eco-Sys Action for the specially designed Lion footballs!

The Lion Football designed by Eco-Sys

The Lion Football designed by Eco-Sys Action

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  • Brenton
    Reply

    Wonderful report. So proud of the guys from Eselenkei! Congratulations to all of the winners and participants. The group photo with the Chyulu Hills in the background is magnificent.

  • Brenton
    Reply

    Have continued my sponsorship of Kamunu through your donation button via Panthera.

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