Job Ilondanga was born and brought up in Shinyalu a small agricultural village on the edge of the Kakamega forest a rainforest easternmost remnant of once continuous forest spreading from the Congo basin to East Africa and Central Africa.
Kakamega forest has 380 tree species, and 410 bird different species of which 194 species are forest dependent, two globally threatened bird species are known to occur in Kakamega forest; Chapin’s Flycatcher and Turner’s Eremomela. As a small boy, Job Ilondanga started joining researchers, and tourists in the forest which made him develop a great passion for nature at a tender age. At age 12 he used to accompany Dale Allen Zimmerman who has undertaken intensive bird research in Kenya.
After his high school education, he enrolled in a course in forestry. After training he was posted in Kakamega Forest, where he undertook many research projects on trees, butterflies, birds, primates, and reptiles (snakes), Kakamega Forest has some of the most dangerous and poisonous snakes found in Kenya
Job Ilondanga has interacted with different ornithologists, entomologists, tourists, birdwatchers, amateur and twitchers, herpetologists, and botanists, both from local and international institutions doing research in the forest;
This has made him one of the most sought-after guides in the Kakamega forest. His knowledge about the forest biodiversity is vast, he knows where to locate the Kakamega forest specialties’ or elusive species with ease, and also he is very conversant with the forest butterflies which are more than 400 in the forest representing half of the total number of butterflies found in Kenya
He is an active member of The Kakamega Environmental Education Programme (KEEP) a locally established initiative that aims to educate the local community and visitors on the wonders of the Kakamega Forest and the threats it’s under.
The organization also runs various communities and conservation programs with the help of donor funds and has been credited with much of the success in slowing the pace of destruction of the forest, they also train upcoming guides in the Kakamega forest. He is married and has two young kids.