|Executive Director, Grevy's Zebra Trust|
|Grevy's Zebra Conservation in Kenya|
|Location: Northern Kenya|
|Species: Grevy's Zebra|
Abstract: The Grevy's Zebra Trust (GZT) is a Kenyan conservation Trust that was established to address the urgent need to conserve Grevy's zebra in the community rangelands of Kenya and Ethiopia. One of its main goals is the protection of the remote and more severely threatened Grevy's zebra populations against poaching and persecution in areas where there has been little or no conservation investment to date. GZT is developing a Grevy's Zebra Ambassador Program to address this critical situation in the target areas of El Barta, Ilaut and Suyan. This program aims to provide protection, raise awareness, establish monitoring, and develop a long-term community-led conservation program for Grevy's zebra.
Project Update: September 2007
GZT is in the process of developing a Grevy's Zebra Ambassador Program which aims to address the problem of subsistence poaching in more remote areas with the aim of providing protection, raising awareness, establishing monitoring, and developing a long-term community-led conservation program for Grevy's zebra. The bulk of investment into Grevy's zebra conservation in Kenya to date has been focused on community areas occupied by the Samburu ethnic group, who, as a result of their traditional beliefs, do not use Grevy's zebra for food or medicine. However, the more northern parts of its range in Kenya are occupied by ethnic groups that do consumptively utilize Grevy's zebra. The El Barta plains were historically a Grevy's zebra hotspot; today, despite an abundance of available resources, very few Grevy's zebra remain in the area and they continue to decline as a result of poaching. The Trust has employed six Ambassadors from both Turkana and Samburu communities in this region to ensure that these two ethnic groups work together to address the current situation. The Ambassadors are uniformed and equipped with hand-held radios and will coordinate with the Milgis Trust security network and Kenya Wildlife Service. During the initial awareness-raising workshops, a pre-program questionnaire survey was carried out to understand current attitudes towards the species and the level of community knowledge among different age and gender groups. The survey will be repeated in one year to monitor anticipated changes in levels of awareness and attitudes as a result of the program.