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Are goats the new elephants in the room? Changing land-use strategies in Greater Mara, Kenya
- Løvschal, Mette, Håkonsson, Dorthe Døjbak, Amoke, Irene
- Land use policy 2019 v.80 pp. 395-399
- Elephantidae, cattle, flocks, goats, habitats, issues and policy, land use, models, ownership, privatization, risk, sheep, wildlife management, Kenya
- Land privatization and rapid land-use transformation are drastically reducing the pristine eco-cultural habitat across vast areas of East Africa. To avert what could become a classic tragedy of the commons, comprehensive solutions are needed. To date the conservancy model has provided a viable solution for securing long-term sustainable integration of cattle management alongside wildlife conservation. But new groundbreaking research shows that cattle numbers are stagnating and that flocks of sheep/goats are expanding on an unprecedented scale. We argue that the risks posed by increased numbers of sheep and goats have not been adequately recognized, since sheep and goat management bypasses the traditional approaches to thinking and governing land in the Greater Mara. Sheep and goat ownership therefore has the potential to develop disproportionately if they are not immediately integrated into conservancy management policies.