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Counting wild animals in Kenya - 3rd September 2021 View All

Kenya's first National Wildlife Census has started. It covers 50 of Kenya's national parks. Private and community nature parks will also be studied. Flying over the land, the census gives more correct information about the wild animals.

Wild animals are dying because of humans. Hunting, growing cities and climate change all cause many wild animals to die.

Robert Obrein, of the Kenya Wildlife Service, explains that this census is important for the government.

Robert Obrein: "We have always concentrated doing our things {the census} on protected areas, but for the first time, we're even going beyond protected areas because the national government wants to know where the wildlife is."

Because the census is by plane, more information is collected. The animals' habits can be studied. Where the animals eat, drink and rest is recorded. Animals sometimes come to water holes near where people live. This means, there might be trouble for people and wildlife. People try to stop the animals coming near their homes. Almost 500 people were killed by wild animals between 2014 and 2017.

Wildlife director, Julius Cheptai talks about it.

Julius Cheptai: "We will also be able to address the issues to do with the human-wildlife conflict, in terms of population of those animals that are prone to human wildlife conflict."

Robert Obrein is afraid of more problems between people and wild animals in the future.

Robert Obrein: "That means we are encroaching on wildlife places. That means eventually another 10 years, we might not be having wildlife outside protected areas."

Robert Obrein: "I'm really afraid that in the near future, we might be fencing off protected areas to keep wildlife safe."

This census can give us information to protect people and animals. View Less

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