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The Mugie Rangelands and Pastoralists Show 2019: It’s all about being good neighbors

Mugie Ranch held the second Annual Mugie Rangelands and Pastoralists show in June. The show focused on Kenyan livestock economies by promoting awareness of techniques and approaches in sustainable rangeland management, anti-microbial resistance awareness, animal husbandry and pastoral livelihoods in the Northern Rangelands.

This year’s show was very motivating.  Held on 8th of June 2019, the event brought together about 500 participants including exhibitors, pastoralists, and organizations and entities operating in the Northern Rangelands.

Pastoralists brought their livestock to the show, where the Kenya Animal Genetic Resources Centre guided them on how to select the right breeds to keep in rangelands based on the quality of meat, the quantity of milk, and the adaptability of the animals to the rangeland conditions. Champion livestock were recognized and awarded prizes.

This is the second of a fun, annual event that celebrates livestock and the diversity of culture, enabling rural pastoralists to participate in the show because of their proximity. The Rangeland and Pastoralist Show displays the possibilities of improved rangeland management and livestock husbandry and promotes quality over quantity in livestock husbandry, as well as conservation agriculture.

The Rangeland and Pastoralist Show draws from communities in Samburu, Baringo and Laikipia counties. The initiative was started with the aim of sharing new techniques in animal husbandry and rangeland management with pastoralist communities.

This was an opportunity for Laikipia Forum to interact with pastoral communities and all stakeholders. We created awareness on the control and management of invasive species for rangelands improvement, more awareness on the EMU SACCO that promotes water conservation and management within the Ewaso basin, and that bridges the gaps in water conservation financing.

Laikipia County Natural Resources Network (LAICONAR) had the opportunity to lobby for fodder production links between small holders pastoralist, and ranchers; and they interacted with service providers on future linkages. The event included cultural dances and a meat feast, and the celebration ended with participants longing for next year’s event. Many thanks to Mugie Ranch, Laikipia County Government, Kenya Market Trust, and Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) Foundation for  their support of the event.  

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2019 ANNUAL KWS CONSERVATION EDUCATION WORKSHOP: Fostering Cohesion and Partnerships

Under new leadership, KWS hosted the 2019 annual KWS Conservation Education Workshop. Speaking at the Workshop, KWS Executive Director, General Brig (rtd) John Migui Waweru, endorsed the formation of the Conservation Education Forum. He gave his  full support for its objectives and areas of focus. His main concerns remains the high level of Human Wildlife Conflicts, and stated that 65% of Kenyan land is populated by humans, and the other 35% by wildlife. The proximity of people and wildlife amidst a growing human population would continue to trigger conflict among the two since all depend on the natural habitat for survival.

The Laikipia Forum took the lead on one of the conservation education thematic groups – Public Engagement and Research. The Forum illustrated the achievements of citizen science in the greater Laikipia area, collaboration with regional conservation organizations and county governments, and the engagement of wananchi in conservation data collection.

The Annual KWS Conservation Education Workshop was held on the 21st of May, 2019, at the Kenya Wildlife Services Headquarters where the Conservation Education Forum secretariat and membership pledged to be strategic in its operations, vibrant, all inclusive and above all, promote synergy among all conservation actors in the country. This was the unanimous consensus reached by members of the forum and over 15 conservation organizations attending the workshop.

The Conservation Education Forum includes three thematic areas: Community Outreach, Public Engagement and Research, and Learning Institutions.  The workshop sort to showcase organizational strengths and come up with modalities of leveraging one another for impactful conservation education programming, as well as for the development of a single CE curriculum that could be adopted and used by all conservation education organizations in the country.

While concluding the workshop, the chair of the Conservation Education Forum, Ms. Mary Kirabui highlighted that our primary goal is to promote environmental conservation broadly. Conservation education is but one of many tools that contribute to this goal. She emphasized the need for all the players in the sector to be fully dedicated in their work and to be true ambassadors of wildlife conservation and environmental protection.

The workshop was organized by Kenya Wildlife Service, The Conservation Education Forum Secretariat with support from: WildlifeDirect, Stand Up, Shout Oust (SUSO), Wildlife Clubs of Kenya, National Museums of Kenya, and Africa Nazarene University.

For more information contact Mary Kirabui at mkirabui@kws.go.ke  (0723 594431) and Benedict Omondi at benedict.omondi@laikipia.org (0720 687 479)

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Changing the Narrative on Wildlife Conservation: Kenyan Conservancies Speak Out!

Communications experts and practitioners working in Kenyan Conservancies across the country unanimously agreed to work in a coordinated manner to change the negative narrative that has for too long time engulfed the conservation space.

This collaborative action was agreed at the first Conservation Communication Forum organized by Kenya Wildlife Service and Kenya Wildlife Conservancies Association on 7th March 2019, at the African Wildlife Foundation. The forum brought together communication practitioners from over 20 conservancies in the country with an aim of brain-storming ways to correct the apparent “communication disconnect in Kenyan wildlife conservation” as well as create collective action and harmony to ensure that our national conservation effort is projected to the world with an improved perspective and through various media channels.

Communication experts listen in to the KWS Ag. Director General Prof. Charles Musyoki while delivering his speech at the Conservation Communications Forum in Nairobi

The negative publicity around conservation was majorly attributed to the competitive nature of conservancies for donor funding.  As a result, success stories such as: women shattering the conservation “glass ceiling”; the downturn in poaching; the recovery of vulnerable species; and the fact that Kenyans are at the helm of conservation; these themes barely see the light of day. In addition, seldom do the individual efforts of conservancies contribute to the national and international perspectives and messaging so important to the emerging national narrative on conservancies. Read more

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Destination Laikipia To Offer Fresh Leisure, Living, Learning and Loving Laikipia Experience

Laikipia offers diverse, wild and personal tourism experiences and the new platform is a new gateway!

The County Government and the Laikipia Tourism Association (LTA) have reached an agreement on the management of a promotional-booking website (Destination Laikipia) a platform that is dedicated to boost tourism and investments in the County.

The new website is designed to be a one-stop shop for Laikipia destinations, investments, company promotion, and living. The tourism component will  let potential travelers book and make payment for a wide variety of  tourism experiences. This is also the first time any county will have a one-stop booking platform for private properties in its landscape.

In the agreement, LTA will manage the platform making it easy for its membership to feature their properties, package their offerings, and advertise major upcoming events.

Are you interested to visit and enjoy the wild and personal experiences of Laikipia? Through the platform, you will get recommendations for holidays with discounted rates, and efficient reservations, as well as regular updates on travel information in the County.

This is a boost to the County’s tourism promotion and private sector support, and will greatly contribute to tourism growth in the Laikipia landscape.

There are many Laikipia tourism investments/properties that are expected to be the major beneficiaries of this new development as they will get a platform for direct booking services and marketing of their destinations.

The development of Destination Laikipia’s new platform is in its final stage.

We encourage tourism service providers in Laikipia to sign on with the LTA in order to enjoy this new marketing and promotion platform for tourism in the Greater Laikipia Landscape.

For LTA Membership and inquiries, contact LTA Secretary John King’ori

Email: john.kingori@laikipia.org

Cell: +254 714 797 931