Tsavo Cheetah Project
Their mission is to target the protection of the cheetah, as a flagship species representing the Tsavo Ecosystem.
They are working together with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) on long-term, effective cheetah conservation and monitoring programs in the Tsavo region of Kenya.
The Cheetah is a globally threatened species, listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. Worldwide, cheetah populations are estimated between 9,000 and 12,000 individuals, with population strongholds existing in Southern and Eastern Africa. The cheetah population in Kenya is not well-known, but is believed to be less than 1000 individuals. The main threats affecting the cheetah’s survival are habitat loss and fragmentation, a declining prey base, inter-guild competition with sympatric large predators, and conflict with humans through livestock depredation. The conservation strategy for cheetahs is dependant on reliable population estimates, and an understanding of cheetah distribution and threats within protected areas, ranch lands, communities, and along wildlife dispersal corridors.
How Many Cheetah in Tsavo National Parks?
There has never been a thorough scientific population and conservation assessment of the cheetah in and surrounding the Tsavo National Parks in Kenya.
In 1990, Paule Gros (1998) estimated a potential of 440 cheetahs in the Tsavo National Parks using the average density method (Gros et al. 1996).
Based on evidence obtained from accumulative data and reports, Tsavo has been concluded as a key ecosystem for sustainable cheetah populations and therefore recognized as a focal, priority region for cheetah studies in Kenya, as outlined in the National Conservation and Management Strategy for Cheetah and Wild dog
Their project reports continued conflicts with cheetah and other predators within adjacent communities, including pastoralists bordering the Tsavo parks who frequently graze their livestock within park boundaries. They are continuing to ID individual cheetahs through direct sightings and with the aid of camera traps for population status and monitoring purposes.See more