Rescue crew uses steel barge to save giraffes stranded on flooded island in Kenya

Wildlife conservation officials in Kenya are working to save eight giraffes stranded on an island in Lake Baringo by transporting them to a nearby nature preserve on a custom-made steel barge.

Footage by Save Giraffes Now (a Texas-based nonprofit that teamed up with Kenya Wildlife Service and the Northern Rangelands Trust to carry out the complicated rescue mission) shows giraffe Asiwa being brought from the flooded island to her new home at a Ruko Community Wildlife Conservancy sanctuary.

The animals are part of a group of Rothschild's giraffes that were sent to the remote Kenyan Rift Valley in 2011 in an effort to save the animals from poachers and to increase the subspecies' population, People reported.

According to reports, the eight giraffes ended up isolated after recent heavy rains turned the peninsula they were living on into an island.

Asiwa was the first giraffe to cross the water on the barge, and a second giraffe named Pasaka has since been rescued.

"There is great urgency to execute this rescue," said David O'Connor, president of Save Giraffes Now. "We couldn't have asked for a better result, and we're eager to move the others soon. With giraffes undergoing a silent extinction, every one we can protect matters."