Mole Patrol at the Ilula Children’s Home

December 5, 2011 by Holly

It was in the early morning when Obed came running for me, calling my name.  I quickly came out of my house, not knowing what I might find. I saw Obed and then I saw the living creature hanging from the wire, struggling to escape – a large brown mole. Obed is a 14 year-old boy who loves trapping these animals. As he told of his experience, his voice was full of excitement, his hand eager to show me the fury animal.

Kenyan moles are very different from the ones found in America, as they are over a foot long and weigh three to four pounds.  They cause a lot of damage both in our kitchen garden and fruit tree orchard, destroying much of our crop.  To help reduce the number of moles in our area, we now pay the children 30 shillings (about 30 cents) per mole caught.

We asked Kenneth, an older boy of ours, to teach the other children how to make their own traps using sticks, green sisal ropes, a wire and a hoe.  After the training workshop, Obed went home and began work on his own traps. I snapped this picture of him as he was setting one of them, anxious to see if it would work and as I found out, it certainly did!  As a farmer and father, I was proud of Obed’s accomplishment; I know he is saving his earnings to buy his own ewe.   He is a hero to me. May he continue to develop his talent.  As for the moles, over 30 of those nasty animals have been caught this year. I pray our success continues, as we begin our second planting.

– By Paster Lucas Rono

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Categories: Kenya Vulnerable Children