By Darcy Ogada

We set out for northern Kenya in May when the area was awash in floodwaters, clearly the worst of times to be traveling into a place whose roads are notoriously treacherous at the best of times.

Two vehicles, two drivers, three raptor recorders, one homeguard for 14 days of surveys.

Our aim was to count raptors, all of those that we could see from our vehicle windows. Counting raptors from a moving vehicle is really the only method to quickly assess their numbers over such a vast area.

An area whose list of pending large-scale developments reads like an 8-year old’s list to Santa Claus — long and growing. Damming of the Omo River, the Lamu Port Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport Corridor (LAPPSET) project, oil extraction, the largest wind farm in sub-Saharan Africa, multiple high voltage power lines, and a dam called Crocodile Jaws.