Threats facing the Tana River Primate Reserve, Kenya

Description

The Tana River Primate Reserve was established in 1976 to protect the remaining forest along the Tana River and the most threatened primate species, which are; the Tana River Red Colobus and the Tana River Mangabey, both endemic to the forests of lower Tana River. These species are threatened by habitat loss and degradation, which has increased in recent years.

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Basic Data
NameThreats facing the Tana River Primate Reserve, Kenya
CountryKenya
ProvinceCoast
SiteTana River
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Biodiversity conservation conflicts
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Establishment of reserves/national parks
Other
Deforestation
Specific CommoditiesBiological resources
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsThe Tana River Primate Reserve was established in 1976 to protect the remaining forest along the Tana River and the most threatened primate species, which are; the Tana River Red Colobus and the Tana River Mangabey, both endemic to the forests of lower Tana River. These species are threatened by habitat loss and degradation, which has increased in recent years.

In 1996, the World Bank donated USD 6.2 million on a period of five years to help KWS (Kenya Wildlife Service) protect and manage the Tana River Primate Reserve. The project aimed at relocating communities living in the reserve to an alternative site. However, it faced a lot of resistance from the locals who refused to relocate, therefore this did not provide a solution.

Currently, the Institute of Primate Research (IPR) is involved in a new conservation approach for the reserve whereby the Pokomo community is now taking part in the process. This community programme is being managed by KWS and IPR in partnership with Rutgers University (USA) and the Northern Rangelands Trust, a local NGO.

Project Area (in hectares)17,100
Type of PopulationRural
Potential Affected Population30,000-50,000
Relevant government actorsKenya Wildlife Service, Kenya Forest Service, National Environment Management Authority
International and Financial InstitutionsThe World Bank (WB) from United States of America
Global Environment Facility (GEF)
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersNorthern Rangelands Trust, Institute of Primate Research, Rutgers University
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginMobilization for reparations once impacts have been felt
Groups MobilizingFarmers
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
International ejos
Local ejos
Women
Pokomo
Forms of MobilizationDevelopment of a network/collective action
Street protest/marches
Naked protests by Pokomo women
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
Outcome
Project StatusIn operation
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseCompensation
Strengthening of participation
Development of AlternativesInvolving the local community in programs aimed at conservation of the reserve, in order to create a sense of ownership.

Encouraging protection of primates habitat outside the reserve through planned development and agricultural activities.
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.Protecting the endemic and endangered primate species in the Tana River Primate Reserve has been a challenge. The World Bank tried to implement a project that involved relocating the local community which faced a lot of resistance. Kenya Wildlife Service and the Institute of Primate Research have taken lead in adopting an approach that involves the local community in conservation. However, issues of proposed developments in the region and large scale farming projects still pose a threat to the primates habitat outside the reserve.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

Forest Act; Wildlife Conservation and Management Act, Environmental Management and Cordination Act

Links

Kenya Wildlife Service
[click to view]

UNESCO
[click to view]

IUCN
[click to view]

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
[click to view]

Machuhi E (2010) ‘World Bank Ordered to Pay Villagers Sh634 Million for Land’, Daily Nation, 19 April 2010.

Meta Information
ContributorSerah Munguti
Last update24/06/2014
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