Factors affecting black rhino monitoring in Masai Mara National reserve, Kenya.

Walpole, Matthew J. (2002) Factors affecting black rhino monitoring in Masai Mara National reserve, Kenya. African Journal of Ecology, 40 (1). pp. 18-25. ISSN 0141-6707. (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Abstract

The black rhino in Africa is slowly recovering from poaching. This has been achieved in part by maintaining ongoing monitoring as part of intensive protection and biological management. However, the efficacy of population monitoring methods has not been assessed. Rhino surveillance records and rainfall data were used to determine which ecological and operational factors affected monthly rhino sightings by vehicle patrols in Masai Mara, Kenya. Comparisons of sightings capture rates using different ground-based and aerial methods were also conducted. Stepwise multiple regression revealed a model (adjusted R-2 = 0.66) predicting monthly rhino sightings with four significant factors; number of patrols, rhino population size, rainfall over the previous 2 months and a dummy variable for the month of August. The latter two variables represent the negative effects of long grass growth and the annual wildebeest migration on rhino sightings, and result in seasonal deficiencies in monitoring. During vehicle patrols, 51% of sightings were made whilst moving, and 49% were made whilst stationary and scanning with binoculars, although sightings capture rate was an order of magnitude higher when stationary. Equally, sightings capture rate from hot air balloons was twice that during vehicle-based patrols, although with less accuracy of identification. The introduction of foot patrols would increase patrol cost-effectiveness and fill seasonal troughs, thereby providing better all-round surveillance.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > DICE (Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology)
Depositing User: C.G.W.G. van-de-Benderskum
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2008 01:12
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2014 10:03
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/10731 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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