Disequilibrial Ecosystems and Livelihood Diversification among the Maasai of Northern Tanzania: Implications for Conservation Policy in Eastern Africa

By McCabe, J. Terrence | Nomadic Peoples, June 2003 | Go to article overview

Disequilibrial Ecosystems and Livelihood Diversification among the Maasai of Northern Tanzania: Implications for Conservation Policy in Eastern Africa


McCabe, J. Terrence, Nomadic Peoples


Resume

Ecosystemes en desequilibre et diversification des modes de vie chez les Masai de la Tanzanie septentrionale: Consequences pour les politiques de conservation en Afrique de l'est

Les savanes et paturages d'Afrique de l'est sont celebres dans le monde entier pour leur importante concentration de faune, en particulier les grands ongules migrateurs et les predateurs qui en dependent. Grace a l'initiative de protection de la faune dans la region, 7.5 pour cent du territoire kenyan et 8.7 pour cent de l'Ougandais sont devenus proteges a travers 58 parcs nationaux et reserves de grands-fauves. Au Kenya comme en Tanzanie, la majorite de ces zones protegees sont actuellement ou ont ete occupees par beaucoup de bergers ou agro-bergers. Cet article se penche sur le defi permanent que represente la reconciliation d'objectifs de conservation et la creation de moyens d'existence par les bergers qui vivent dans la region du Ngorongoro, en Tanzanie du nord. Cet article s'interesse tout particulierement a la diversification de l'economie de betail menee par les bergers dans cette region et au nouveau defi que cette diversification represente pour la politique de conservation.

Resumen

Ecosystemas desequilibriales y diversificacion des sustento entre los Maasai de la Tanzania del norte: Implicaciones para la politica de la preservacion en el Africa del este

Las sabanas y tierras de pastoreo de Africa del este son famosas en el mundo entero por su gran concetracion de fauna, sobre todo los grandes ungulados migratorios y los depredadores que dependen de ellos. La iniciativa de proteger la fauna de la region ha dado como resultado que el 7.5 por ciento de la superficie de Kenia y el 8.7 por ciento de la superficie de Uganda son ahora zonas protegidas bajo la forma de 58 parques y reservas nacionales. En ambos Kenia y Tanzania, la mayoria de estas zonas protegidas son o fueron ocupadas por muchos pastores o agro-pastores. Este articulo estudia el reto continuo que es reconciliar los objetivos de la conservacion con la creacion de sustentos constantes de la que se encargan los pastores que viven en la region de Ngorongoro, en Tanzania del norte. Este estudio se interesa particularmente en la diversificacion de la economia de ganado aplicada por los pastores de esta region asi como en el nuevo desafio que esta diversificacion representa para la politica de conservacion.

Introduction

The savannas and rangelands of East Africa are famous throughout the world for their vast concentrations of wildlife, especially the large migratory ungulates and the predators that depend on them. The unique qualities of these grasslands and bushlands and the vulnerability of these ecosystems to overexploitation have been recognised since the early days of the colonial period. The first game control ordinances were put in place at the beginning of the twentieth century and the first national parks in East Africa designated in the 1940s (Western 1997, Neumann 1998). Once the national park system was established, the number of parks and protected areas increased dramatically throughout the remainder of the colonial period. Some parks were fairly small, such as Nairobi National Park, while others were vast; the original proposal for Serengeti National Park encompassed 29,500 square kilometres, nearly the size of present day Belgium (Neumann 1998). The drive to protect the region's wildlife and natural resources continued following independence, with the encouragement and influence of international wildlife and conservation NGOs. Today, 43,673 [km.sup.2] or 7.5 percent of the surface area of Kenya, is classified as protected in 36 National Parks or Game Reserves; 151,496 [km.sup.2] or 16 percent of Tanzania is protected in 32 National Parks and Game Reserves; and 20,650 [km.sup.2] or 8.7 percent of the surface area of Uganda is protected in 26 National Parks and Game Reserves (Barrow et al. 2001). …

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