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South Nandi Forest

Image: The RSPB

We're working with NatureKenya to help local communities take care and benefit from the South Nandi Forest in western Kenya.

The wildlife

The South Nandi Forest is home to over 110 species of birds, nearly 50 of which are only found in forests, including the endangered Turner's eremomela. It's also home to some amazing animals, including the elusive leopard and the giant forest hog - the largest pig in the world! South Nandi Forest is one of only three areas of native forest left in the River Yala catchment. These areas are major providers of water for local people.

The problems

The main threats to this important forest are trees being cut down to make room for farming, overgrazing by livestock, charcoal production and wood being sold as timber or fuel to help boost the income of local people. The forest is surrounded by 59 villages where villagers live on less than 55p per day. The villagers mainly depend on farming to make a living, but they often need to find some other way of boosting income to take care of themselves and their families.

Saving the forests of Kenya

With support from the Department for International Development, we've been helping NatureKenya to work with local communities and the Kenya Forest Service to help protect the forest. We've been helping build capacity at the local level for managing the forest, showing the local communities alternative ways of boosting their income which don't harm the forest, and setting up sites where people can learn about alternative fuel sources.

Margaret M. Kisibo

The other villagers can see the benefit of the nursery. We’re given respect by other groups in the village and we’re asked to share our experiences by the local leaders.

Margaret M. Kisibo, Kenya