Population dynamics and future conservation of a free-ranging black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) population in Kenya

Walpole, Matthew J. and Morgan-Davies, M. and Milledge, S. and Bett, P. and Leader-Williams, Nigel (2001) Population dynamics and future conservation of a free-ranging black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) population in Kenya. Biological Conservation, 99 (2). pp. 237-243. ISSN 0006-3207. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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The black rhinoceros has declined throughout its range since the 1960s as a result of illegal killing to supply the international trade in rhino horn. However, in recent years the decline has been halted and reversed as a result of the protection and management of rhinos in a small number of key areas. This paper assesses population recovery in one such area, the Masai Mara, since the mid 1980s, using data from daily surveillance patrols. Although a partial recovery to 35 individuals at a growth rate of 9.8% per annum took place until 1994, the population then appeared to decline to 23 individuals by 1999. At no point did the population size or density approach that of the population prior to poaching. The apparent decline could be a result of death, dispersal or an increased reclusiveness amongst some individuals. Evidence suggests that this population extends beyond both protected area and international borders within the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem, and a comparison of the age and sex structure of present versus disappeared rhinos implies that dispersal of sub-adult individuals may partly explain the recent decline. Intensive monitoring with regular assessment of rhino population performance is vital to avoid complacency and identify potential problems quickly. It is recommended that cross-border monitoring is implemented to identify and protect the full range of this population, and to try to ascertain the fate of individuals that have disappeared. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: black rhinos; population recovery; dispersal; Serengeti-Mara ecosystem; Kenya
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
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: 05 Sep 2008 14:57
Last Modified: 28 May 2014 13:16
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/8440 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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