Human-wildlife conflicts pose a great challenge to wildlife conservation and are increasing as human migration settlement from rural to urban areas increases, development expands, global climate changes and other human and environmental factors put people and wildlife in greater direct competition for a shrinking resource base. The purpose of this study was to find out the factors influencing human-wildlife conflict in communities surrounding protected areas; a case of OlPejeta Conservancy. Objectives of the study were to determine the influence of; resources competition, human migration settlement, human invasion to protected areas as well assessing how Kenya Wildlife Service conservation measures influence human-wildlife conflict in communities living around OPC. The study was influenced by the fact that human-wildlife conflict cases are still rampant in OPC despite measures taken up by Kenya Wildlife Service to reduce human-wildlife conflict. The study is significant to interested stakeholders in developing programs that will ensure sustainability of the wildlife and human, assist Kenya Wildlife Service in reviewing and amending appropriately existing policies governing natural resources and land issues and local community and future researchers interested in related topics. The study was based on Social Conflict and Stakeholder theories. The study used a descriptive survey research design where the target population comprised of 1200 households from Tigithi and Ngobit villages surrounding OPC and all the 10 Kenya Wildlife Service officers at OPC station. Stratified sampling was adopted to select 130 households. Questionnaires and interview guides were used to collect data. Quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics such as percentages and frequency while data was presented using tables. Respondents were assured of the confidentiality of the information provided. From the study, it was concluded that when there is drought, the pastoralists graze their livestock in the protected areas and some residents also block water for domestic and agricultural use, people migrate due to various reasons which have led to an increase in human population, that invasion to protected area for agricultural and economic activities are also on the rise. This study recommends that: the government should resettle squatters away from the protected area, enforcement of regulations and legislation on the safe distance on which people should build their houses away from protected areas and community education and awareness by Kenya Wildlife Service should be implemented in the areas where Human-Wildlife Conflict is experienced.
Table of Contents