What is a Wildlife Conservancy?
A conservancy is Land set aside by an individual landowner, body corporate, group of owners or a community for purposes of wildlife conservation (Wildlife Act 2013).
Following the enactment of the Wildlife Act, wildlife conservation is now a recognized form of land use.
History of Wildlife Conservancy
In the early 1970s, the first non-state protected areas, later to be referred to as Conservancies were established by private and community landowners. Solio ranch, Taita Hills sanctuary, Kimana wildlife sanctuary and Ol Chorro Oiroua ranch were among the pioneers.
During the mid and late 1990s, majority of current community and private conservancies were established. Although majority of these conservancies were individual initiatives, the Policy environment created by Kenya Wildlife Service and the support by Conservation organization and tourism investors provided a platform for Conservancies to develop.
Benefits from Conservancies ranging from improved security, better land management, income, employment and support to community projects have encouraged the growth of conservancies to over 140 spread across 22 Counties covering over 7.5 million acres.
The term 'Conservancy' is now legally defined by Wildlife Act 2013
What is the Status of Wildlife Conservancy
- Over 140 private and community conservancies
- Conserving Over 7.5 million acres of land
- Located in 22 counties
Legal recognition of conservancies, harmonization of standards and provision of incentives is vital for conservation of wildlife on private and community land in Kenya.