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Date Published: 30 May, 2013
The inaugural elite group of trainees that graduated on the 10th of April 2013 after the three month course at KWS LEA in partnership with community wildlife conservancies had a class of 28 students. Of these, 22 are from the NRT consortium, 2 from The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, 2 from Empaash Oloorienito in Kajiado, and one each from Elkarama in Laikipia and Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust respectively in the Chyulu Hills National Park Ecosystem.
The training is an important part of KWS function under its Community Enterprise Development programme to build capacity of landowners who host wildlife on their land to actively engage in sustainable wildlife conservation with the aim of realizing decent livelihoods from sound environmental management. The focus has been on practical wildlife management strategies, basic paramilitary training in order to standardize protocols of management, command structures and reporting procedures in these institutions in addition to being a force multiplier, providing critical buffer to the protected area system.
It is on this basis that MWCT, Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust has forwarded a detailed reporting format to share information with KWS about their latest anti-poaching operation. On the night of Wednesday 29th May 2013 the rangers received information about spot-lighting in the area of Langata on Kuku Group Ranch. They went out to the field and seized one Aardvark carcass and 3 Dik Dik carcasses. The poachers got away but the rangers are tracking them. The conservancy is paving way in wildlife management and reporting procedures, as well as reverting to communities for skills and capacity building.
The establishment of KWCA, as the umbrella body for conservancies in Kenya shall go a long way in the consolidation of information from conservancies. Reports are trickling in building up on the existing database. Progressively, the true reflection on the status of wildlife conservation shall be realized both within and outside the protected area system. This shall then advise sustainable and profitable management of wildlife in Kenya, pitting wildlife as a land use option in given sites.