The Big Life Foundation and Smart Parks created the first Smart Parks in Kenya to improve the protection of the Amboseli-Tsavo-Kilimanjaro ecosystem. During the installment last week, a gateway and several sensors were deployed.
The new technology enables staff to track vehicles and rangers in the area. In the coming months, Big Life Foundation will use this test phase to study how wildlife conservation and communities can benefit from Smart Parks technology.
Today, the almost 6500km2 of wildlife habitat is at risk from rising human numbers, immigration, and the spread of farms and villages. Land subdivisions, settlement and fencing are compressing livestock herds and causing conflicts with wildlife. Sensor technology will enable Big Life Foundation to see where community rangers can best be deployed or where tracked animals are roaming. Other applications such as electric fence monitoring systems and liquid level sensors for wells and boreholes will improve day to day operations.
“Big Life is excited to work with Smart Parks to implement emerging and cost-effective technologies to better improve our operations and conservation impact in East Africa”, says Craig Millar, head of security and field operations.
For example, in the Kimana sanctuary, home to some of the biggest elephants in Kenya, rangers will soon be able to see remotely what the water levels in the rivers are, where their colleagues are patrolling and whether they are safe, where a fence line is broken or which part of a fence should be investigated. The Smart Parks application installed at the control room at headquarters can also show where tourists are in a particular area and whether livestock is illegally grazing in the protected field. By implementing new technology, Big Life continues to optimize their partnership with local communities to protect nature for the benefit of all.
Find out more about the vital work of the Big Life Foundation in Kenya here.
More pictures of our campaign can be found here.