Kenya to complete elephant census by 2018



Date Published
NAIROBI: Kenya plans to complete its census of elephants and other large mammals by end of 2018, wildlife officials said recently.

Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Director General (DG) Kitili Mbathi told Xinhua in Nairobi that they have already completed the census in the Masai Mara Serengeti and Tsavo Mkomazi ecosystems jointly with the Tanzanian wildlife authorities.

“We have finalized the compilation of the data and we are planning to announce the results next week,” Mbathi said in a recent interview.

“Thereafter we will move to the other national and game reserves, so that we complete the nationwide census by end of 2018,” he said.

The KWS official noted that the idea of the counting exercise is to know the exact number of elephants and other large mammals, so that Kenya can monitor their population trends on a regular basis.

The KWS will soon begin counting in the Aberdares National Park and Samburu National park.

Mbathi noted that conducting the aerial exercise in the Aberdares National Park will be a difficult exercise given the mountainous nature of the territory.

The East African nation conducts an elephant census every three years. The wildlife agency will use planes to conduct the aerial census.

“In order to improve the efficiency of the exercise, we will divide the target area into grids,” the DG said.