Animal species we count
We counted 23 wild and 5 domestic animal species that are active during the day.
- Kirk’s dik-dik (Madoqua kirkii),
- olive baboon (Papio anubis),
- vervet monkey (Cercopithecus pygerythrus),
- warthog (Phacochoerus africanus),
- Thomson’s gazelle (Gazella rufifrons thomsoni),
- Grant’s gazelle (Gazella granti),
- impala (Aepyceros melampus),
- topi (Damaliscus lunatus topi),
- Coke’s hartebeest (Alcelaphus buselaphus cokei),
- wildebeest or white-bearded gnu (Connochaetes taurinus
- Defassa waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus defassa),
- Burchell’s zebra (Equus quagga boehmi),
- black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas),
- bat-eared fox (Otocyon megalotis),
- eland (Taurotragus oryx),
- African buffalo (Syncerus caffer),
- Masai giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi),
- hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius),
- African elephant (Loxodonta africana),
- spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta),
- lion (Panthera leo),
- cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) and
- the ostrich (Struthio camelus massaicus).
We also counted cattle, donkeys, dogs, and sheep/goats (called
counts underestimated species active at night (for example, civet, genet), species
that hide (for example, leopard) and species that inhabit dense woody vegetation
(for example, bushpig, bushbuck). Our count method also missed some of the smaller
animals (dik-dik, mongoose).
We also mapped the type, number and the decomposition state of wild and domestic
Multiple species associations
We mapped the location of all multiple species associations (MSA’s) of wildlife.
A multiple species association is a group of 2 or more species that form a group
for predator protection. We consider 2 species an association if they are within
300 m of each other – animals farther apart than this are not interacting
closely and do not form an MSA.
In the centre of each of three central sub-blocks per block, we estimated within
a 2m x 2m block the percent cover of the herbaceous plants (%), the average height
of the herbaceous plants (in meters) and greenness on a 20-point scale. One time
per 1x1 km block, we also measured the cover, height (in meters) and color of
trees and shrubs.
Burns, cultivated fields (shambas), fences
We mapped the location of all burns and record their age (recent or old). We also
mapped the location and size of all shambas and fences of any type.
We recorded the locations and type of all places that have water during the count.
This included wetlands, streams, rivers, ponds, dams, tanks, towers, wells and
We recorded any presence of tsetse flies within the counting vehicle.
Bomas (traditional Maasai settlements)
Each currently inhabited and abandoned boma was also mapped. At each boma, we
counted the number houses and recorded the type of roof on the house (dung, grass,
tin or stone).
Other infrastructure and rubbish (or trash)
In villages or towns, we counted all shops, schools, clinic, houses and other
buildings. For houses, we recorded the type of roof. We also recorded all other
infrastructure we saw like football fields, park gates, lodges (plus their type),
airstrips. We also recorded the presence of any rubbish in each sub-block.
We also recorded the type and number of all vehicles we saw. We counted the number
of passengers per vehicle.
Areas we do not sample
We excluded from the count all areas with dense trees or shrub and mapped these
areas during the count.