Our guests often ask what animals they can expect to see when staying at Porini camps. The first thing that most people think of when they come to Africa is the Big Five, but between our camps in Nairobi National Park, Selenkay, Ol Pejeta and the Mara we have a such a vast range of animals, that you will leave having experienced more than you ever expected.
Kenya has an incredible diversity of wildlife species owing to its two rainy seasons a year and the different types of wildlife habitats in the various parks, reserves and conservancies. There is plenty to see in addition to the Big Five. Here are just 10 other iconic animal families that you could see around our camps.
Bovidae is a family of cloven-hoofed mammals and constitutes some of the most common creatures found in Africa. In Kenya this family has a wide range of members which vary greatly in size and coat colour. These include bohor reedbuck, Chandlers mountain reedbuck, bushbuck, Cape buffalo, Kirk’s dik dik, common duiker, eland, gerenuk, Grant’s gazelle, Thomson’s gazelle, Coke’s hartebeest, Jackson’s hartebeest, impala, lesser kudu, klipspringer, oribi, suni, steenbok, topi, common waterbuck, defassa waterbuck and white-bearded wildebeest.
Kenya’s charismatic warthog is part of the Suidae family. Warthog travel in small groups called sounders and are named so because of the small bumps found on their faces.
This family comprises only two members, the okapi, found in the dense rain forests of the DRC and the giraffe, endemic to Africa’s open savannahs and a popular sight in Kenya’s reserves. These include the Maasai giraffe and reticulated giraffe.
This carnivorous family are generally social animals that live together in family units or small groups and are characterised by their long muzzles, uprights ears, long legs and adapted teeth. In Kenya you will find Canidae such as the bat-eared fox, black-backed jackal, golden jackal, side-striped jackal and African wild dog.
As the smaller, but no less ferocious, carnivores of the bush, you can find both the honey badger and zorilla on safari. Most Mustelidae family members have short legs, short, round ears, and thick fur. They are also solitary, nocturnal animals, so are best spotted on a night game drive.
The cats that inhabit Kenya are some of the popular wildlife attractions outside of the Big Five. Caracal, cheetah, genet cats, serval cats and African wild cats all feature in our parks.
Some more unusual looking animals belong to the Hyaenidae family, including the infamous spotted and striped hyenas as well as the rarer aardwolf. This family often has a bad reputation among both locals and visitors, but are in fact fascinating creatures to watch.
A common sight on the plains of Africa are members of the Viverridae family, including the African civet, banded mongoose, dwarf mongoose, marsh mongoose, slender mongoose and white-tailed mongoose.
The primates of Africa are some of the most unique and enigmatic of all of the continent’s creatures. You might just come across the olive baboon, yellow baboon, greater galago, lesser galago, patas monkey, sykes monkey or vervet monkey around our camps.
The nocturnal aardvark uses its long pig-like snout to sniff out food during the night. They spend the daylight hours in dark underground burrows to avoid the heat of the day and so are mostly only spotted after the sun goes down.