research

our mission

Kasanka Trust welcomes research projects in Kasanka National Park and a number of groups have already carried out studies. Researchers finance their stay, but there is essential research needed to be conducted in house for which donations are welcome.

Research

Current:

 

Kasanka Baboon Project – a long-term field site dedicated to the study of the little-known Kinda baboon, providing capacity building in science education in the surrounding communities as well as promoting empowerment to young women and public awareness of wildlife conservation. Find out more here.

 

Bat Research – A group of 7 researchers affiliated with the Max Planck Institute for Animal Behaviour visited Kasanka in November 2019 for an on-going project on the Straw-Colored Fruit Bats (Eidolon helvum). Their visit this year had three aims 1) to estimate the number of bats making up Kasankas’ mega-colony, 2) to tag some bats in order to understand their migration movements better, and 3) to use a drone to study the emergence patterns of the bats when leaving the roost. The study is ongoing. Find out more here.

 

Puku Research – Dr Vera Rduch, came to Kasanka National Park in November 2019 to undertake some research on the most common antelope in the park, Puku (Kobus vardonii). Her survey, entitled “Population status and distribution patterns of Puku in Kasanka National Park, Zambia”, involved driving previously identified line transects that cover different habitat types within KNP, recording the composition and abundance of the animals seen, and their distance and bearing from the vehicle. From this information she will estimate their current population within the park as well as determine their population structure (males, females juveniles), spatial distribution, group sizes, condition and behavior. The population estimate can be used as a measure of conservation effectiveness, and help direct conservation efforts in the future. 

 

Planned:

 

The development of a Catchment Management Plan for the Luwombwa River Catchment  The Luwombwa, Kasanka, Musola, Mulembo, and Mulaushi rivers and multiple complex dambo systems within Kasanka National Park have resulted in an immense diversity of habitats and species. These water resources are under increasing pressure from upstream users as a result of growing agriculture and mining developments. The development of a Catchment Management Plan is the essential first step in the conservation of these waterways that are critical for Kasanka National Park.

 

Elephant movement behavior in Kasanka National Park and the surrounding Kafinda GMA – Elephants utilize both the park and the GMA at different times of the year. To effectively manage them during their time out of the park, an understanding of their movement behavior is essential.

 

A social study on the most effective alternative livelihoods to poaching  Kasanka National Park is surrounded by communities who rely mainly on farming and the use of natural products for survival. In order to effectively conserve the park, it is essential to work with communities to combat the unsustainable utilization of natural products. The development of alternative livelihoods has been demonstrated as an effective method of reducing poaching. 

 

“Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land”

Aldo Leopold

what is needed

*needs based on the 2020 budget and according to gaps in donor funding already secured – Updated in March 2020

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