Connecting carnivore landscapes

26.01.2021

CONSERVATION PROBLEM

In Kenya’s Southern Rift region, lion, cheetah, and wild dog populations coexist with Maasai pastoralists outside of any formal protected areas. However, increasing human-wildlife conflict pose a threat to these carnivores. In 2017-2018, fourteen lions and seven wild dogs have been killed by humans in the region. The project aims to support the Maasai communities’ coexistence with carnivores, while also protecting these populations and maintaining the landscape connectivity between the Mara-Serengeti and Amboseli –Tsavo ecosystems, two of Africa’s remaining large carnivore strongholds.

PROJECT OBJECTIVES

By the end of the project, the aim is to develop a prototype for how local communities themselves can achieve carnivore conservation and maintain landscape connectivity in a holistic manner. It also plans to improve conflict response and prevention, as well as increase the presence and community tolerance for lions, cheetahs, and wild dogs in the eight communities and 680’000 hectares covered by the project.

PROJECT ACTIVITIES

  • Recruit and train community scouts from the eight Maasai communities to collect information on species populations, advice community members on how to handle livestock predation, respond to human-wildlife conflicts and prevent retaliatory killings;
  • Establish teams responsible for tracking carnivore movements across the landscape and reacting accordingly;
  • Train stakeholders in human-lion coexistence in order to prevent and respond to human-carnivore conflict, at the household and government level;
  • Create community dialogue on conflict prevention by engaging community governance institutions that will secure space for carnivores and facilitate coexistence;
  • Create community dialogue on conflict prevention by engaging community governance institutions that will secure space for carnivores and facilitate coexistence;
  • Work with County governments that will ensure information on lion distribution and populations is considered during the development of their ecosystem management plan;
  • Establish a South Rift Coexistence Group composed of various stakeholders that will be responsible for promoting collaboration between all conservation actors and coordinating conflict prevention and response.

This project is a part of the IUCN SOS African Wildlife initiative, which is funded by the European Commission’s Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development (DG Devco) through its B4Life initiative.



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