Community-based monitoring & surveillance of elephants in Northern Kenya
Interim Progress Report to the International Elephant Foundation – August 2009
Dr. Juliet King – Research & Monitoring Coordinator, Northern Rangelands Trust
Technical Progress Report
The aim of this project is to enhance the capacity of community conservancies within the Ewaso ecosystem in monitoring and surveillance of wildlife, particularly elephants and their threats.
Conservancy Management Monitoring System:
To this end, NRT has introduced the Conservancy Management Monitoring System (CoMMS) a standardised system for monitoring wildlife, threats and patrol effort that is carried out by conservancy scouts and maintained entirely at a conservancy level. CoMMS has now been introduced to 11 out of the 12 target NRT community conservancies within the ewaso ecosystem; this is being done in a phased approach, as follows:
Phase 1: participatory mapping of patrol blocks & locations with scouts; identify monitoring objectives & key species; training in data collection methods.
Phase 2: Review of monitoring system progress, modification of patrol blocks & wildlife species where necessary; training of managers & heads of security in paper-based monthly summaries.
Phase 3: Introduction of computerised data storage, training scouts in computer skills; purchase of laptop computer & solar power system for conservancy headquarters.
Phase 4: Development of monitoring database tailored to each conservancy; training of manager, head of security & scouts in basic database use.
Phase 5: Further review & modification of database; training in advanced database operation, maintenance, reports & maps.
By July 2009, CoMMS was at the following stages in each of the 12 conservancies targeted under this project: