Saving Habitats

Protecting the future of all wildlife and biodiversity

With the support of local partners including the Kenya Forest Service and Kenya Wildlife Service, we are working to secure Kenya’s unique and endangered wild habitats. Measures include erecting and maintaining fencelines (Wild Borders) to secure wildlife areas and reduce human-wildlife conflict and providing financial support to empower community-led initiatives that protect and preserve areas of biodiversity.

250,000

Land protected (Acres)

36,000

Trees planted in 2018

188+ Kms

Fencelines erected and maintained

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Our Initiatives include

Kibwezi Forest

The Kibwezi Forest is one of Kenya's last remaining groundwater woodlands. Having secured a 30 year concession to conserve this environmentally rich site, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has embarked on a partnership with the Kenya Forest Service to protect and sustain this unique area.

This space represents the largest neighbouring protected area in Kenya and is also one of its most important conservation areas. Located within the forest, the Umani Springs are an increasingly important water source for the human population in the surrounding areas as well as wildlife, as it is also the only surface water available throughout the dry seasons in this region. The forest and springs is home to a number of large mammals, birds, reptiles, butterflies, invertebrates and fish. The Kibwezi Forest is also home to our most recently built elephant reintegration unit - Umani Springs.

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Peregrine Area

Based within the Tsavo Conservation Area, which is home to the country's single largest population of elephants and a greater biodiversity of species than any other conservation area in the world, the Peregrine Conservation Area encompasses over 4,500 acres of land adjoining the Tsavo East National Park. This land is a prime wildlife habitat and key 'buffer zone' between the National Park and community homes, while also serving as the location for the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust field headquarters, Air Wing and Canine Unit, which support all of the Trust's Tsavo-based projects.

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Amu & Witu Forest

Home to one of the largest mangrove forests in the world and some of the oldest coastal forests in Africa, this fragile environment has, in the past, been threatened by illegal encroachment, deforestation, poaching and unsustainable agriculture.

Working in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust provides financial support and management expertise to the Lamu Conservation Trust, a community-led umbrella organisation that the Trust has funded since inception, to protect, manage and preserve Amu Ranch. We fund security measures including the building of security outposts and camps; salaries of 50 trained rangers to patrol and protect the area; equipment including tractors, water bladders, two boreholes, along with patrol vehicles. This work has included the establishment and continued maintenance of over 300km of road networks for security patrols, and the headquarter infrastructure on the ranch.. The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust also covers the costs of efforts to regenerate the forest including maintenance of the Farouk Camp tree nursery which can accommodate over 10,000 indigenous tree seedlings.  

In 2014, we began a public-private agreement with the Kenya Forest Service, to manage and protect the Witu Forest in partnership with the Lamu Conservation Trust. This includes funding a new security camp and ongoing security patrols to combat illegal logging and hunting in this important migratory corridor for wildlife.

Lamu Conservation Trust
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Kimana Sanctuary & Corridor

In 2018 we partnered with the Big Life Foundation to secure this small but critical 5,700 acres of land that is a favourite stomping ground for Amboseli’s famous Tuskers and an essential corridor between the Amboseli ecosystem, Chyulu Hills and Tsavo West National Park.

Shrinking habitats and subsequently increased human-wildlife conflict are amongst the biggest challenges in Amboseli against a backdrop of agricultural and transport development. Through the partnership with Big Life, local land owners and KWS, and in a win-win for wildlife and the communities, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust covers the costs to lease the land from the local community to ensure it remains set aside for wildlife, as opposed to agriculture while our local partners oversee the Sanctuary’s security and daily management.

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Mwaluganje

The Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary is one of Kenya’s first community-owned wildlife sanctuaries and aims to preserve a critical corridor for elephants along their migratory route to Tsavo East National Park.

The aim of this community-based initiative is to reduce clashes between people and wildlife by encouraging and compensating private land owners to lease their land for wildlife, as opposed to agriculture. Working with the Kenya Forest Service and Kenya Wildlife Service, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust financially supports this initiative by funding Sanctuary staff wages, essential maintenance works including upgrading the road network within the sanctuary and compensation for the 300 private land owners who participate in the scheme.

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Meru Rhino Sanctuary

The Meru Rhino Sanctuary is a safe haven for Kenya’s black and white rhino populations located in Meru National Park. In 2017 the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust embarked on an ambitious project in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service to refurbish, expand and secure this critical sanctuary, which means more protected space for rhinos to live and roam.

Measures that have been financially supported by the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust include extending the western boundary of the Park to expand the sanctuary’s total area to 83.5km squared, replacing the existing perimeter fence with a new electric fence that incorporates important wildlife corridors and building of strategic security bases within the sanctuary to ensure the area is effectively patrolled and protected at all times.

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Wild Borders (fencelines)

Nairobi National Park
Northern Tsavo East
Kibwezi/Chyulu Hills
Voi - Maungu
Beehive Fencelines
Nairobi National Park

In 2011, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust funded the upgrade of 15km of fenceline along the south-eastern boundary of Nairobi National Park, where the park borders local communities. This unshortable, human-proof electric fence will remain live, even when tampered with or cut, and has proved to be extremely effective in protecting the Park’s wild inhabitants and preventing human-wildlife conflict and illegal activities.

In 2013, following a request from the Kenya Wildlife Service, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust funded the upgrade of a further 1.7km of fenceline within the Park, in the vicinity of the KWS staff compound, which was being breached by wild animals and humans alike, creating serious issues concerning the security of the Park’s rhinos. ​​​​​​​

Northern Tsavo East

Over the years, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has constructed a 63km fenceline along the Tsavo East National Park northern boundary, bordering the Ithumba area. This is the Trust’s longest fenceline and is a significant financial commitment, which requires ongoing maintenance and the employment of community teams to ensure the fence is in good working order at all times.

This boundary was chosen to be protected as it has experienced high levels of human-wildlife conflict due to elephants crossing into community lands, as well as escalating wildlife poaching. This area is also home to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust's Ithumba Reintegration Unit where the orphan elephants need protection whilst they are rehabilitated back into the wild.

Kibwezi/Chyulu Hills

The Kibwezi Forest is home to Kenya’s last remaining groundwater woodlands, as well as the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust's Umani Springs Reintegration Unit for orphaned elephants.

To safeguard this valuable protected area from increasing environmental pressure, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has built 75km of electric fencing along three sensitive boundaries.

The unshortable fenceline, which remains live even when tampered with or cut, protects roaming wild animals and neighbouring communities from mounting human-wildlife conflict. In addition to preventing animals from wandering into community land, for instance crop raiding elephants, it also provides a barrier against human incursion into the park.

To ensure the on-going effectiveness of the fenceline, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust works with members of the local community to maintain the structure, providing employment opportunities and encouraging community involvement in the conservation initiative. ​​​​​​​

Voi - Maungu

In 2016, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust constructed 17km of electric fenceline along the southern boundary of Tsavo East, from Voi Safari Lodge along the Ngutuni Sanctuary boundary to Ndara.

This region has seen major infrastructure development in recent years, including building of the high speed Standard Gauge Railway which directly affects the movement of elephants and other wild animals, bisecting known migratory routes.

The 14 strand fenceline safeguards elephants and other wild animals by providing a barrier between the newly built high speed railway, as well as the existing Nairobi-Mombasa road and nearby communities. It also provides additional protection to wild-living orphan elephants, reintegrated within the Voi area, and prevents illegal incursions into the Park.

The key advantage of this type of fence is that it is unshortable, ensuring that even if the fence is cut or tampered with, it will remain live. Four sections of the fence are monitored by the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, whilst regular maintenance is carried out to ensure there is a constant high voltage. Two energiser houses have also been constructed, which power the fenceline.

Beehive Fencelines

Throughout the communities bordering Tsavo East, along the north-western side of the Mtito River, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is working together with the Mtito Andei Human-Elephant Conflict Resolution Self Help Group to come up with an affordable and non-aggressive way of curbing human-elephant conflict – beehive fencelines.

With support from the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and with initial funding from British Airways, this community group has constructed 2.2km of wire fenceline with over 100 modern langstroth beehives, incorporating seven local community farms which have been hit the hardest by elephant crop raiding.

The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has also provided training courses for the farmers with a professional beekeeper, teaching them how to maintain the hives and harvest the honey safely. This project has multiple benefits to the farmers by guarding their farms against elephant invasion and better pollinating their crops, while also offering financial benefits from sales of honey. ​​​​​​

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