Tag Archives: Conservation

Ornithological Congress

David received an invitation two weeks ago to atted an ornithological congress by the Pan African Ornithological Congress (POAC) which will be held at Arusha in Tanzania.The congress will be held on 14th to 21st of October.

PAOC is a regular congress which is held after every four years to talk about African Ornithology with the aim of promoting  conservation of African birds.

He has been requested to make a presentation of the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest and the bird monitoring programme he has been working on.

David in one of his Bird surveys

Community on Mangrove Conservation

Two weeks ago David received an invitation from Ngomeni Mangrove Conservation group who wanted to share ideas of mangove conservation.Ngomeni is on the south west side of Arabuko-Sokoke forest. This part of the forest is covered by the cynometra tree species.

David honored the invitation and went, first meeting with one forest guard who is in charge of controlling mangrove forest in the area. Mr Evans Jefwa,one of the forest guards, who is doing a very good job in training the community to plant trees, took David round the area and showed him the mangrove seedlings planted.

He later explained to David that there are two groups which are working to plant mangove trees.David was very excited to see these efforts and encouraged them to continue with this and also to start other projects on rearing chicken and also fish farming. This will later help them in generation of income.

GIS training in Samburu

GIS Training in Samburu.

Geographical Information System (GIS) is a conservation tool that is slowly gaining momentum in today’s conservation world. Recently the Ecological Society of Eastern Africa also know as ESEA organized for a GIS training that was held at the Earth Watch Institute in Samburu – Kenya.

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Participants at the GIS training.

The training targeted users of GIS in the field in conservation work, its aim was to help users become familiar with the use of GIS as a conservation tool and how to use it in mapping issues of importance in conservation.

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Participants are shown how to use a GPS.

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Elepehants at Sambur Nature Reserve, where we carried out our field work.

The training drew participants from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. This training gave the participants insight on the of GIS and the use of a GPS as a data entry tool. The FoASF manager, Caroline Lumosi was among the participants who benefited from the training. The new skill gained will be of a valuable resource for FoASF in mapping the illegal activities in the forest.

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GIS training participants.

For more information concerning training opportunities with ESEA kindly visit www.ecsea.org

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Day three of film training and close encounter with hippos at camp

Day three of the training went on smoothly, we continued to work on our five minute film and the film was getting in shape slowly, we kept on learning new skills and what we could do to improve the film and to get our target audience.

After lunch I received a call from a former classmate telling me that my former class will be coming to Naivasha for a briefing on the lake and also on our projects, before I put the phone down the bus drove in to the lake shore and I was summoned to accompany them and I was latter to give a briefing to them on my work and the filming project. it went well and my lecturer was impressed with our project. we later continued editing.

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the bus by the shore of Lake Naivasha.

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me talking to them about the filming project.

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back to editing.

Later on that night, as we burnt the midnight oil as we tried to edit, we had a close encounter with hippos three huge, massive hippos came to camp to graze, we all ran out of the editing room to try to get a close look at them, Elene our trainer had never seen hippos a part from the ones on TV, so it was quite exciting for her, some of us got too carried away that I think they did something to make them aggressive as one of us was charged by the hippos lucky it was a shy one so it just scared them and ran back to the lake, that was a pretty close encounter

Day two of Film training

Day two of film training

Day two of film training started rather on a frustrating note, we were to edit our previous films geared towards a different audience, the trick was locating our capture scratch, the raw material, most of the files were offline and we could not locate the source of the disk to reconnect them on line. It was a bit frustrating as we did not have enough time to work on our films yet we were taken quite a back, by the time we located our files we had almost lost a half day and we had to burn the midnight light to keep on track.

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during the training

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Busy at work

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FoASF benefits from Darwin Community Based Conservation Film Training

This week I will be in Naivasha for a one week training on making community based conservation films with support from Dr. david Harper of the University of Leicester in the UK and the Darwin Intiative.

The course is am enhancement of a pervious course we did in July, I was among a group of trainees from Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia who participated in the first training where we made community films on various components of the environment, basically this week will be a further editing course to use the same material to make a different film targeting different audiences. at the end of the day these films will be used as an educative tool to community members, policy markers, school children… name it, they will be distrubuted to various organizations and institutions to achieve this purpose.

I left Gede on Friday evening for Naivasha, I had a quick stop over in Nairobi then proceeded to Naivasha together with the Darwin – Leicester team. We arrived at our rendezvous at United Kenya club and left from Naivasha just after 3 pm. The trip to Naivasha was great although I have been to Naivasha many times, I never stop loving it, and its scenery, the great rift valley being one of them, it stretches all the way from Ethiopia all the way down to Tanzania, it is said to be an aftermath of the great tectonic movement when the earth was being formed and what was left was a huge trench that has become a great valley with undulating hills and very beautiful scenery, the look out point stood at about 800ft above sea level, overlooking this great cliff was this massive deep trench with beauty scenery no words can explain this.

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The hills at the escarpments.

The weather here was cool and then slightly moved to cold, the sun was quickly disappearing beyond the clouds and as we continued on at the rift valley the surrounding vegetation was a vast of green carpet, all around was green, green and more green, wow, now I may sound like a tourist yet am not but at this point am proud to be living in such a beauty country like Kenya. The roads were great, smooth and I left like we should just continue driving forever, the traffic was not as bad although Naivasha highway is well know to be a transit point to western part of Kenya hence huge truck filled the road, from oil transporters to flowers exporters name it all sorts of truck could be seen on the highway.

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One of the vehicle we used passing the rift valley.

As we proceeds on among the vast greenness I saw dots of white, at first I did not know what they represented but as we drove close by I actually identified that those dots of white were actually IDP camps (internal displaced people), one of the outcome of the post election violence, it was not a pretty sight as I somehow felt sad that in the midst of all this beauty was these people who have no home and no where to go, that was really sad.

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view from the rift valley.

I slowly drifted away reading the newspaper as the rest of the team was first asleep I guess from the exhaustion of traveling from far one of them was from Tanzania and the other from Ethiopia and our trainer is from UK, the newspaper somehow seemed interesting , well that is you are crazy about Obama as I am or do I say all Kenyans are or is it all Africans, the world.. whatever call it what you may but am sure glad Obama won, for me it represents a beacon of hope that I can make it in life if am determined to and focus on it, it was great reading about him and I guess for the next few months the pare will be just Obama this and Obama that and Michelle this and first family and first dog… ok sometimes it gets crazy so drifting from the Obama maniac from the papers my eyes focus on yet something interesting to me just as we were approaching Naivasha, mount Longonot which is one of Kenya crater mountain could be seen from a distance, again the view was great, as the sun set in the horizon the beautiful shadow it cast made the mountain look more beautiful than I have even seen it. A few meters from that was this small wood lot of eucalyptus trees that ere farmed form timber, I think this is a great idea and reduces pressure on indigenous trees for timber, just farther on the magnificent view of the lake could be seen, Lake Naivasha a fresh water lake in Kenya is well know for its biodiversity from the fish eagle, the hippos and others found in the lake, and before long as I was enjoying the view of the lake, we had arrived to the flower town, Naivasha can be referred to as the flower farm of Kenya as it has the highest number of flower farms, we headed down at south lake where we were to set camp at Kijabe farm in tented camps. We will be here for the next one week and already am liking it, it’s a good feeling begin away from the ocean and forest and enjoying the different weather, as I got to bed I cover myself with two blankest and have two jumpers a very contrast of what I have in the coast, we star the training tomorrow as I decide to hit the sack early to be fresh tomorrow morning.

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