I visited the Lekki Conservation Center for the third time over the past weekend. My first visit was alright. There were lots of animals – let me rephrase – lots of monkeys. It was barely possible to walk through the nature trail without being ambushed by those thiefing creatures.

My second visit was kinda okay too. There was a new addition to the place, a canopy walkway had been installed. It was quite nice to walk on. But what was more noticeable for me was the declining monkey population.

I visited a third time and met a couple of changes. The last time I was at LCC, we were supposed to be met by a tour guide but he wasn’t available. This time, we waited to meet one. We waited about fifteen minutes before he showed up.

When he did, he led us to the starting point of the trail, introduced himself and then showed us the way to go. That was it. Fifteen minutes wait for barely one minute with this guy. He said nothing about the center, about its history, its objectives or what flora and fauna the place conserves. So much for a guide.

He did mention for us not to be scared of the animals as they would not attack us if we didn’t provoke them to. But really, what he should have said ‘the animals won’t attack ‘cos there are no animals to attack you’. Seriously, it’s no jungle out there.

Anyway, apart from the animal population problem, I also noticed some infrastructural issues. There were lots of missing and broken woods on the floor and sides of the trail path. The tree house is still due for repairs and the place lacks signs and directions.

I’ve always had more faith in the preservation of LCC because it isn’t one of those places solely owned by the government, so I’m really hopeful that these issues would be addressed soon.

To be fair though, I guess that repair works have been undertaken here in the past. I did notice newer wood flooring, so that’s good.

And for the third time, I did not see any crocs. I’m actually beginning to doubt if the place actually has those as it claims it does. Which in turn makes me wonder if there’s any kind of consensus to know if the animal population is declining or not? Is the center aware of how many animals and birds it actually has?

Lekki Conservation Center is becoming popular among locals and foreigners alike. I like to think that, in a way, we had something to do with that. I love going to the LCC. For me, what makes this place special isn’t the canopy walkway.

Don’t get me wrong, I like that we have it but I really loved having the animals all over the place even though monkeys jumping close by terrified me. The first time I visited, one actually tried to grab my bag!

I really do hope that these issues with infrastructure are addressed. It would be a shame to see this place die a slow and painful death due to a lack of maintenance.

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