Tarangire-Manyara (Kwakuchinja)

Region: Manyara
Type: D - Known animal movement routes between two protected areas.
Threat: Critical - probably less than 3 years remaining.
Kwakuchinja Corridor
Kwakuchinja Corridor

Kwakuchinja Corridor

Mapping: Han Ollf / University of Gronigen. Migration route data: Shombe Hassan.

Description

The Tarangire-Manyara corridor is also known as the Kwakuchinja wildlife corridor, and is part of the Kwakuchinja Open Area (600 km2) lying between Lake Manyara and Tarangire NPs. It is located between latitude 03 35’ 38’’ and 0348’ 02’’S and longitude 35 48’ 21’’ and 35 59’ 25’’E.

The vegetation is primarily savanna with pockets of woodlands along waterways.

The area is home to several ethnic groups in at least five sub-villages. Their occupations include livestock keeping, subsistence and/or commercial agriculture and business. Moreover, fishermen from nearby areas and as far as Babati town emmigrate to the area and establish temporary fishing villages when Lake Manyara is most favourable for fishery activity.

The Great North Road, which bisects the corridor, enhances transportation to and from the villages in the corridor of farm products, farm implements and fishery products.

Wildlife

The corridor was once vital to 25 large mammal species, some of which (including elephant) move between the two parks. Field observations two decades ago suggested that elephants moved from Lake Manyara NP into the corridor via Marang forest (adjacent to Lake Manyara NP) then proceeded to Tarangire NP via the Lake Burungi Area.

Some populations of bushbuck, impala and vervet monkey together with livestock utilize the corridor throughout the year.

Threats

The corridor faces sets of conflicting land uses such as agriculture versus livestock keeping, and settlement, agriculture, phosphate mining, cattle holding and fishing versus wildlife management and conservation. So far eight large mammal species - eland, hartebeest, buffalo, oryx, lesser kudu, cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), leopard and lion - are locally extinct. The extinction is attributed to growth in settlements and agriculture which block animal movements, and poaching and human disturbance.

Of the five historical migratory routes in the corridor, only three persisted in 1998. Management Zone Plans (MZP) and General Management Plans (GMP) are envisaged as a way to rescue the area in the current absence of full protection by law. Establishment of WMAs and Biodiversity Conservation Projects such as Api-Agro-foresty in appropriate land units may be useful.

References

Hassan, S.N. (2007) Impacts of space use by humans on large mammal species diversity in the Kwakuchinja-Mbugwe wildlife Corridor, Northern, Tanzania. Tanzania Journal of Forestry and Nature Conservation 76, 134-143.

Goldman M.J. (2006) Sharing Pastures, Building Dialogues: Maasai and Wildlife Conservation in Northern Tanzania. Unpublished PhD thesis, Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin—Madison, Madison, WI

http://www.awf.org/content/solution/detail/3505