13,000 acres of cloud forest now protected in Colombia

first_imgCacica Noría Regional Protected Area safeguards one of the most biodiverse places on the planet.The reserve will be managed by CorAntioquia, the Anorí Environmental Working Group and Proaves.Despite protection, the new park remains threatened by climate change. The cloud forest ecoregion of the Colombian Andes is arguably the most biodiverse in the world. A moist climate, varying altitudes, and high rates of endemism create idyllic conditions for life. However, cloud forests are also under siege from numerous human-related threats such as climate change, mining, commercial logging, and subsistence hunting.Though there is no foreseeable end to the epic battle between forest loss and forest conservation in South America, conservationists won a small victory in December 2016 with the creation of the 13,000 acre (5,261 hectare) Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area in Colombia.The Regional Environmental Agency, CorAntioquia, as well as the Anorí Environmental Working Group will manage the reserve.The cloud forests of the new Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area – in all its glory! Photo credit: Adolfo Correa, CorAntioquia“[Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area] is a nature reserve that will place Colombia before the eyes of the world,” said Adolfo Correa with CorAntioquia. “The intention is to widen the area from there to better create local and regional benefits, including improving water supply, climate regulation, wildlife shelter for pest-controlling species, and nesting and reproduction sites for emblematic national species. It will also be a place for visitors who are interested in conservation.”The establishment of the reserve was made possible in part by Nature and Culture International, which funded the scientific research and community outreach.Cacica Noría will protect plant species ravaged by commercial logging such as the black oak (Trigonobalanus excelsa) and the comino tree (Aniba perutilis), both endemic to Colombia.Other important species include jaguars (Panthera onca centralis) and pumas (Puma concolor), which often fall victim to retaliatory killings by local farmers. These large cats have a low population density, a far-reaching habitat range, and a low rate of reproduction, three factors which make them vulnerable to extinction on the regional and national level. According to Correa, the protected area will only act as “route of passage” within their larger habitat range, but these two feline species will still benefit from Cacica Noría; it will be a safe place for them to breed, rear their young, and temporarily escape the surrounding landscape.The Quebrada Chaquiral, a stream found within the Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area. Photo credit: Adolfo Correa, CorAntioquiaOther threatened mammals found in the reserve are the brown spider monkey (Ateles hybridus hybridus), the silvery-brown tamarin (Saguinus leucopus), and the spectacled bear (Tremarctus ornatus), all of which have faced increasing rates of habitat loss and degradation. Mammals like deer and turkeys, which are under pressure from subsistence hunting, are also found in the Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area.This reserve harbors around 400 bird species, 20 of them threatened. The chestnut-capped piha (Lipaugus weberi), a species endemic to Colombia, is now considered Critically Endangered. Proaves, a Colombian non-profit, will manage a 3,270 acre (1,323 hectare) section of the reserve specifically for the preservation of this beloved bird species and others like the black tinamou (Tinamus osgoodi).Conservationists believe that protecting this vital watershed will also improve national water quality.“This area protects the head waters of the Anorí, Porce, and Nechí rivers, used by local people for drinking water, agriculture, and cattle raising,” said Felipe Serrano with Nature and Culture International. “This area also contributes water to the Porce hydroelectric project, one of the most important in Colombia.”Conservation of riparian forests, as well as aquatic and amphibian species such as the billed toad (Rhinella macrorhina) and the Murri robber frog (Pristimantis bellona), will also be important to maintaining freshwater ecosystems.The violet-crowned woodnymph (Thalurania colombica) is one of 400 bird species found within Cacica Noría Regional Protected Area. Photo credit: Adolfo Correa, CorAntioquiaAround 90 percent of the reserve will be under strict protection, leaving 10 percent for sustainable agriculture and forest restoration projects.Despite this step forward, climate change remains a threat to cloud forests that cannot be controlled by the borders of a protected area. As temperatures warm up, many cloud forest species will be forced to migrate upslope to maintain a favorable climate. However, the pace of migration often cannot keep up with the rapid environmental changes we are seeing today. As our planet’s climate systems continue to be altered, it is very likely that some or many of the species found in cloud forests will be lost. While establishing protected areas is certainly important and beneficial, truly conserving cloud forest ecosystems may also require global efforts to curb climate change.Historically, the land in the protected area was under pressure from mining, hunting, logging, and other unsustainable uses. In order to make the transition to a reserve, Correa maintains that local communities must be able to have a say in management decisions and be provided with sustainable economic alternatives such as ecotourism. Receiving benefits from the reserve and having a sense of responsibility towards its protection will be key to the success of Cacica Noría – and the many species which are considered endangered, endemic, or emblematic to the people of Colombia.Citations:Hance, J. (2013, September 18). Climate change could kill off Andean cloud forests, home to thousands of species found nowhere else. Mongabay.com. Retrieved February 27, 2017, from https://news.mongabay.com/2013/09/climate-change-could-kill-off-andean-cloud-forests-home-to-thousands-of-species-found-nowhere-else/Nature and Culture International. (2016, December 19). Colombia Creates a New Protected Area! [Press release]. Retrieved from https://natureandculture.org/colombia-creates-a-new-protected-area/ Article published by Maria Salazar Animals, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Cloud Forests, Conservation, Environment, Extinction, Forests, Habitat Loss, Interns, Jaguars, Monkeys, Protected Areas, Rivers, Water center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Rainforest conservation may be aimed at the wrong places, study finds

first_imgCitations:Banner image: red howler monkey in Peru. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerGreenpeace, University of Maryland, World Resources Institute and Transparent World. “Intact Forest Landscapes. 2000/2013” Accessed through Global Forest Watch on April 12, 2017. www.globalforestwatch.orgHansen, M. C., P. V. Potapov, R. Moore, M. Hancher, S. A. Turubanova, A. Tyukavina, D. Thau, S. V. Stehman, S. J. Goetz, T. R. Loveland, A. Kommareddy, A. Egorov, L. Chini, C. O. Justice, and J. R. G. Townshend. 2013. “High-Resolution Global Maps of 21st-Century Forest Cover Change.” Science 342 (15 November): 850–53. Data available on-line from:http://earthenginepartners.appspot.com/science-2013-global-forest. Accessed through Global Forest Watch on April 12, 2017. www.globalforestwatch.orgMargono, B.A., P.V. Potapov, S. Turubanova, F. Stolle, and M.C. Hansen. “Indonesia primary forest.” Accessed through Global Forest Watch on April 12, 2017. www.globalforestwatch.orgSullivan, M. J., Talbot, J., Lewis, S. L., Phillips, O. L., Qie, L., Begne, S. K., … & Miles, L. (2017). Diversity and carbon storage across the tropical forest biome. Scientific Reports, 7.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the editor of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Climate-based conservation policies often focus on forests with large carbon stores – but what this means for biodiversity protection has been unclear.Previous research found a link between tree diversity and carbon storage on the small-scale, with tropical forests that have more tree species possessing larger stores of carbon. But this correlation had not been tested for larger areas.Researchers examined thousands of trees at hundreds of sites in the tropical forests of South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. Their results indicate that on the one-hectare scale, tree diversity is low and carbon storage is quite high in Africa, while the opposite is the case in South America. In Southeast Asia, both carbon stocks and tree diversity appear to be high.The researchers say their results indicate carbon-focused conservation policies may be missing highly biodiverse ecosystems, and recommend a more fine-tuned approach for prioritizing areas for conservation. As the earth gets warmer, nations are putting their hope in tropical rainforests. Located along the equatorial belt of the planet, scientists estimate tropical forests are home to around half of the world’s terrestrial plant and animal species and may store more than 250 billion tons of carbon. Because of their carbon-storage superpower, the protection of tropical rainforests has become a central facet of international climate change mitigation policies, such as REDD+. Standing for “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation,” the United Nation’s REDD+ policy framework aims to encourage developing countries to keep their rainforests in the ground – and, thus, the carbon they contain out of the atmosphere – by providing financial incentives from richer countries.But do carbon-focused conservation approaches also protect forests that are biologically important?Previous research indicates tree diversity may have a positive correlation with carbon storage ability – at least on the small scale. In other words, forests with more tree species may store more carbon than forests with fewer tree species.But the tree diversity-carbon storage relationship has been little explored for larger areas. A group of international scientists sought to change this, and assessed the relationship between carbon storage and tree diversity in tropical forests at the one-hectare scale in the forests of Southeast Asia, Africa, and South America. In total, the team examined around 200,000 trees from 360 sites. They recently published the results of their pan-tropical study in Nature’s open-access journal Scientific Reports.To their surprise, the researchers found no set carbon storage-tree diversity relationship at this larger scale. On the contrary, their results for tropical forests in Africa indicate overall tree diversity is low while carbon storage is quite high. In South America, the opposite was found, with high tree diversity but low carbon. While in Southeast Asia, both carbon stocks and tree diversity appear to be high.The study found tropical forests in South America, like this one in Peru, had high tree diversity but lower overall carbon stores relative to tropical forests in Africa and Southeast Asia. Photo by Rhett A. ButlerThe researchers say their results indicate some current conservation strategies may be aimed at the wrong places.“If carbon storage and biodiversity are unrelated (as we found), then carbon conservation strategies will miss some high diversity forest,” said Martin J. Sullivan, a senior researcher at the University of Leeds in the UK and lead author of the study. “Protecting some areas of forest can divert threats onto unprotected forest (a process known as leakage), so it is important that these high diversity forests are not left unprotected and vulnerable.”In their study, the researchers write their results highlight a need to assess conservation value more comprehensively, and that there are ways to do this. But it won’t necessarily be easy.“Methods to select protected areas that consider multiple metrics of conservation value (e.g. aboveground biomass carbon and aspects of biodiversity) are available,” the authors write. “Our results support the use of such an approach over carbon-dominated prioritization incentivized under REDD+.“Applying this in practice is challenging as it requires knowledge of spatial variation in tree diversity, composition and carbon stocks, highlighting the importance of careful identifications to species level during forest inventories. As tropical forests can have any combination of tree diversity and carbon both will require explicit consideration when optimising policies to manage tropical carbon and biodiversity.”Since the study showed Southeast Asia’s rainforests are both carbon-dense as well as highly biodiverse, Sullivan highlighted the importance of forest conservation in this region. He said Southeast Asia is special in this way because its forests are dominated by the trees of the Dipterocarpaceae family, which comprises a group of very tall, fast-growing trees. Although this family is also found in Africa, it underwent a huge radiation in Asia.A towering dipterocarp in Indonesia. Photo by Rhett A. Butler“There are a few hypotheses for why dipterocarps get so big and grow so fast; they may need to grow tall as they have wind dispersed seeds, there may be no penalty for growing tall as risks of strong winds are less in Borneo than elsewhere, they may be able to extract nutrients more efficiently than other trees due to associations with ectomycorrhizal fungi [that live on the roots of some plants], or they may allocate more of the carbon they get from photosynthesis to growth rather than other functions compared to other trees,” Sullivan told Mongabay.Based on this research, Sullivan and his forest scientist colleagues suggest that Southeast Asian forests should be put at the forefront of global climate change mitigation and conservation targets.“Despite the general lack of association between diversity and carbon, our analysis demonstrates that forests in Asia are not only amongst the most diverse in the tropics but also amongst the most carbon-dense,” their study states. “Thus at a global scale a clear synergy emerges, with forests in Asia being both highly speciose and extremely carbon-dense.”The researchers write that this conservation need is magnified by threats Southeast Asian forests are experiencing in the face of human development pressure.“Asian forests are under substantial threat, particularly from conversion to oil palm plantations and more intensive logging than elsewhere in the tropics,” the authors write. “As a triple hotspot for biodiversity, carbon and threat, there is a compelling global case for prioritizing their conservation.”The researchers’ concerns are supported by data that show massive tree cover loss across the region. According to a multi-institutional analysis, relatively few intact forest landscapes (IFL) – areas of native land cover large and undisturbed enough to retain their original levels of biodiversity – remain on the Southeast Asian mainland. Cambodia has just one lone IFL, 38 percent of which was degraded between 2001 and 2013.Indonesia, which has one of the world’s highest rates of deforestation, still has some IFL coverage, but only on 17 percent of its land area. Many of the archipelago’s islands are completely or nearly devoid of IFL cover. The major driver of land cover change in Indonesia has been the establishment of tree plantations for the production of palm oil, wood pulp, and other commodities.The province of Riau on the island of Sumatra is one region that has been highly affected by this kind of industrial agriculture. The forest monitoring platform Global Forest Watch shows tree plantations covering most of its land area, with its few remaining IFLs showing degradation between 2001 and 2013.In 2011, Indonesia enacted a moratorium on new clearing in primary forest and peatlands. While data analyzed via Global Forest Watch Commodities show a small slow-down in the clearing of primary forest in Riau since the moratorium, the province still lost 494,000 hectares of primary forest in the three years betwen 2012 and 2014 – compared to around 558,000 hectares of primary forest loss from 2009 through 2011. Elsewhere, illegal deforestation has also been reported.Indonesia has been heavily affected by plantation agriculture, with large areas of forest displaced for the production of palm oil, wood pulp, and other commodities. Riau shows significant recent tree cover loss (which reflects both deforestation and plantation harvesting), with around 1.6 million hectares of tree cover lost between 2005 and 2014 from areas designated as primary forest as of 2000. Tracts of particularly large, undisturbed primary forest called intact forest landscapes show degradation throughout Indonesia between 2000 and 2013.Hariadi Kartodihardjo, professor of forest policy at Bogor Agricultural University (IPB), Indonesia, says the problem with Indonesia’s forest conservation lies with the government agencies that manage the forests.“Our people don’t see the rainforests as their assets,” Kartodihardjo told Mongabay. “In Riau, the [amount of land set aside for conservation] has been shrunk from 80,000 hectares to 20,000 hectares. This kind of loss should be considered as our country’s loss. We should map the rainforests and [evaluate] the natural resource inside them … [that way, it would be] easier for us to feel the loss.”Kartodihardjo also says that, to strengthen Indonesia’s forest conservation efforts, policymakers should focus more on the local level rather than on international policy such as REDD+.“Indigenous communities, NGOs, and Conservation Forest Management Units (Kesatuan Pengelollan Hutan Konservasi/KPHK), are at the frontline of Indonesia’s rainforest conservation,” he said. “But unfortunately, policies regarding these three agents are not prioritized by our government.” Animals, Biodiversity, Carbon Conservation, Climate Change Policy, Deforestation, Environment, Forest Carbon, Forest Loss, Forests, Global Warming Mitigation, Industrial Agriculture, Palm Oil, Plantations, Plants, Pulp And Paper, Rainforests, Redd, Redd And Biodiversity, Research, Saving Rainforests, Trees, Tropical Forests, Wildlife Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by Morgan Erickson-Davislast_img read more

A forest of their own: The Yiaku as Kenya’s model forest stewards

first_imgThe Yiaku people have inhabited and watched over Mukogodo Forest for centuries, as hunter-gatherers who have lately embraced herding. But it is only in the past decade that the Kenyan government has officially given them rights to the forest, as well as full responsibility for managing it.The forest has thrived under the Yiaku’s care, according to officials, a stark contrast to other forests in the country, which are being lost to illegal logging and agricultural encroachment.The Kenyan government, which has a decidedly mixed record when it comes to protecting both forests and the rights of forest-dwelling indigenous groups, is hailing the Yiaku’s approach as a model for other communities around the country. However, the Yiaku face a suite of challenges, including intensifying drought, threats of encroachment by neighboring groups, and their own dwindling connection to their traditional culture.This is the first part of Mongabay’s three-part profile of the Yiaku’s management of their ancestral forest. Read the other stories in this three-part profile of the Yiaku’s management of Mukogodo forest:Kenya: Bees help indigenous Yiaku defend and monitor their ancestral forestFor Kenya’s Yiaku, medicinal herbs are their forest’s blessing and curse LAIKIPIA, Kenya — An elderly man clad in a long green-and-yellow plaid shawl knotted tightly above one shoulder sits on the dusty verandah of Mukogodo Primary School, oblivious to the scorching midday heat.“We have three footpaths that can take us to the forest from here, but we have to know what time it is in order to know which area the elephants and buffalos are headed to,” Moses Litiku tells Mongabay. He gazes at the sun. After a few minutes of consideration he settles on a route safely out of the animals’ way and then forges out, clenching his walking stick.Litiku, a 79-year-old herbalist, grew up in Mukogodo Forest and knows it intimately. His people, the Yiaku, have inhabited and watched over the forest for centuries, as hunter-gatherers who have lately embraced herding. But it was only in the past decade that the Kenyan government officially granted them rights to the forest, as well as full responsibility for managing it. Mukogodo is the only one of Kenya’s 372 gazetted forests under the sole custodianship of an indigenous community.The community’s approach to protecting the forest involves a strong governance system coupled with traditional religious beliefs that emphasize care for the ecosystem on which their livelihoods depend. The Yiaku have fended off illegal loggers and poachers, and forest cover has improved under their care, in stark contrast to other forests in the country, which are being lost to illegal logging and agricultural encroachment. The government, which has a decidedly mixed record when it comes to protecting both forests and the rights of forest-dwelling indigenous groups, is hailing the Yiaku’s approach as a model for other communities around the country. However, the Yiaku face a suite of challenges to their custodianship of the forest, including intensifying drought, threats of encroachment by neighboring groups, and their own dwindling connection to their traditional culture.Yiaku elder Moses Litiku walks into Mukogodo Forest, the Yiaku’s ancestral home. Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.Defending the forestMukogodo Forest is a 302-square-kilometer (117-square-mile) tract of dry forest that sits in the foothills of Mount Kenya in the central part of the country, 210 kilometers (130 miles) northeast of Nairobi. Its rolling hills blanketed in native trees are home to 45 mammal species, including threatened elephants, buffaloes and leopards, as well as around 200 bird and 100 butterfly species.Deep inside the forest, Litiku comes to a dark spot where the canopy blots out the sky. He sees freshly broken branches on a tree, then bends down to examine what looks like animal droppings. He squeezes a piece of it between his fingers, testing the moisture, then drops it.“The elephants passed through here about three hours ago. They are now on the other side of the forest and will be returning later in the evening,” he says with a reassuring grin.Litiku goes on to explain the Yiaku’s relationship with the forest.“Our forefathers invoked a curse on the forest and we believe whoever cuts a tree, the curse would befall his family,” he says. “These taboos are very powerful and no one would contemplate breaking them, not even during the night.”Litiku says Yiaku children as young as 4 are taught about the importance of the trees and behavior patterns of birds. By the time they reach 12 they can interpret various bird calls and animal behaviors to tell the presence of a predator or poacher. “For example when birds like woodpeckers chirp continuously near a homestead we know it’s a signal that we have an enemy. Furthermore, our honey harvesters communicate with honeyguide birds through whistling to establish locations of wild beehives deep inside the forest,” Litiku says.The forest provides more than just food and the opportunity to generate income through activities like beekeeping and livestock grazing. “The forest provides us with medicinal plants; thus destroying any of these trees is putting our community in grave danger,” Litiku says, pointing at a tree he claims cures at least four ailments.Map shows Laikipia County in Kenya, where Mukogodo Forest is located. Image courtesy of Google Maps.Map of Isiolo, Meru, and Laikipia counties in central Kenya shows Mukogodo Forest (center). Click here to enlarge. Image by Yvonne A. de Jong and Thomas M. Butynski, wildsolutions.nl.The community’s strong attachment to the sacred forest is at the heart of the Yiaku’s traditional values and practices, which they have developed into a unique governance structure to manage and regulate forest resources. As a member of the Yiaku’s 15-person council of elders, Litiku helps decide how the community uses the forest sustainably, for instance by allocating the rotation of grazing areas, formulating laws, and helping resolve disputes. The council has been a feature of Yiaku life for generations, part of the group’s traditional forest management approach that has become increasingly formalized through partnership with the Kenyan government.Over the years, the country has enacted a raft of progressive laws aimed at bolstering existing forest conservation initiatives by bringing on board indigenous people and local communities. The Forest Act of 2005 granted these communities the rights to forest resources. A 2007 revision of the act gave communities a bigger role in forest conservation, either as co-managers or contract managers of forests. It also outlawed, on paper anyway, long-standing practices such as hunting and logging for charcoal, to maintain the forests and promote tourism.That year, the Yiaku abandoned hunting in favor of livestock herding and beekeeping, and ventured into ecotourism, leasing out a lodge they’d built a few years earlier to an investor who established a high-end six-room tourist lodge there. Proceeds from the lease help support Mukogodo Primary School and pay Yiaku children’s school fees, forest scouts’ salaries, medical costs and community projects.In 2008, the Yiaku formed a decision-making body known as a Community Forest Association (CFA) and entered into an official partnership with the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) to manage Mukogodo. While retaining ownership of the forest land through KFS, the government acknowledges that it is Yiaku ancestral land and guarantees the community the right to unfettered access to and use of the forest.Under the partnership, the Yiaku CFA began work to develop a strategic management plan for forest conservation, establish tree nurseries, and act as the environment’s watchdog. It set up a team of six Yiaku forest guards, trained by the KFS, to monitor forest health and patrol for illegal activity. It also set up a team of Yiaku youth scouts, trained by the KFS, to take part in patrols and other forest conservation activities. And it established a targeted reforestation program that all community members, including children, are required to help with. Over the years the community has received funding from several NGOs for various aspects of their work to protect their rights, culture and forest.A group of Yiaku youth scouts, who have been trained by the Kenya Forest Service to participate in forest patrols and other conservation activities. Here they are shown taking part in an initiation ceremony as they graduate from one age class to another. Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.It’s not just living trees the Yiaku value; they also have a strong passion for dead ones.“Cutting dead tree logs that are still standing or fallen is also considered a taboo here,” James Sikong, a 27-year-old Yiaku forest guard and a member of the CFA, tells Mongabay. For one thing, the logs sometime act as beehives.“Even if they fail to attract bees, we would rather let them decompose and add nutrients to the ground,” he says, pointing to a log that fell 20 years ago. “I remember the event very well because I was in nursery school when the tree fell on my path to school. Since then, the tree is still here,” Sikong says, adding that no Yiaku dare cut any of the many fallen logs in the forest, not even for firewood.Sikong and the five other forest guards work closely with the youth scouts, patrolling the forest by foot on a daily basis. The guards are armed with mobile phones and heavy weaponry issued by the KFS, and the scouts carry traditional swords and batons. The latter are also engaged in herding and beekeeping, which ensures they are always in the forest.There’s little help, other than the training, from the KFS; the primary duty of the only KFS officer assigned to Mukogodo is to coordinate logistics in case of natural disasters like wildfires. They are constantly in tune with everything happening in the forest, Lazarus Lentula, a 27-year-old forest guard leader, tells Mongabay.“Since we are all members of this community we are in a better position to detect any encroachment or destruction of the forest,” Lentula says. When the guards or scouts spot a threat from illegal loggers or a sick wild animal, they inform the CFA immediately, as well as the relevant authorities, such as the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) or the KFS, he says. Depending on the nature of the threat, the guards and scouts can also remove offenders from the forest or arrest them and take them to the council of elders for punishment.A view of Mukogodo Forest, a 302-square-kilometer (117-square-mile) tract of largely intact dry forest that is home to 45 mammal species, including threatened elephants, buffaloes and leopards, as well as around 200 bird and 100 butterfly species. Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.The Yiaku’s approach has paid off. In the decade since they took on full management responsibility for Mukogodo, the forest’s tree cover has increased from 52 percent to 70 percenst, according to Stephen Mwaura, a KFS ecosystem conservator for Laikipia county. “The achievement of the Yiaku in recovering forest canopy is very impressive compared to other forests in the country, which have witnessed a high rate of deforestation between 2010 [and] 2018,” Mwaura tells Mongabay.Although there have been no studies to confirm it, locals say wildlife has rebounded too. “Since we took over the control of the forest, the population of animals, like gazelles and antelopes, that we used to hunt for food has increased; they now roam freely to our homesteads,” Litiku says.The community has scaled up its beekeeping in the years since it gained control of the forest, which has led to higher incomes. Access to education and medical care has also improved significantly, thanks to funding from the tourist lodge. The Yiaku are now looking to expand their honey production capacity and build another lodge.Yiaku children outside their houses. Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.Rights to the forest are keyJennifer Koinante has been at the forefront of the community’s fight for recognition of its land rights as executive director of the Yiaku Laikipiak Trust, a local advocacy group. Besides keeping the forest intact, the Yiaku’s management approach has also earned them autonomy and security from the government, Koinante says, easing a threat of eviction from the forest that had loomed in 2011 following heightened political tensions in the area. The corollary is that the government’s recognition of the Yiaku’s land and forest rights renewed the community’s zeal to conserve Mukogodo. “A sense of belonging and identity … came along with recognition of our land rights and acknowledgment that the forest is our ancestral land,” Koinante says.That sense of identity has been critical for the tiny Yiaku community of fewer than 4,000 people. “Our struggle has been long and winding, dovetailing our identity as a people and our economic rights,” she says.Koinante’s view that recognizing indigenous peoples’ rights is the only way the government can effectively combat deforestation and poaching in the forests these people inhabit is shared by a growing body of conservationists and human rights experts. A report released in June by the U.S.-based NGO Rights and Resources Initiative and the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, found that indigenous and local communities are far more effective conservationists than governments are through protected areas; and yet those very communities are often displaced or marginalized to achieve conservation goals. “They are achieving at least equal conservation results with a fraction of the budget of protected areas, making investments in indigenous people the most efficient means of protecting forests,” the report states.A Yiaku woman outside her house, a traditional structure called a manyatta the Yiaku have adopted from the neighboring Maasai along with many other aspects of Maasai culture. Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.A model for other forestsIn fact, the Yiaku’s guardianship of Mukogodo Forest has been hailed as the first success story in the decade since indigenous and local communities began collaborating with the Kenyan government on forest conservation. In 2015, conservationists marked World Forest Day with a celebration in Mukogodo. The model, conservationists and at least some Kenyan authorities believe, has the potential to improve Kenya’s forest cover and the livelihoods of thousands of indigenous people living in the country’s forests.“This community model of using ancient conservation techniques has proved forest co-management with indigenous communities could be the panacea in reducing deforestation and land conflicts,” says the KFS’s Mwaura.He says that following the Yiaku’s success, the government plans to replicate the co-management model in more than 100 other gazetted forests. The agency has already signed forest co-management agreements with 87 communities, although the Yiaku remain the only one to have full custodianship of their forest, and is in negotiations with another 68.But the process won’t be easy, he says. Progress has been slow, considering the government began enacting laws promoting community forest management more than a decade ago: at the current rate, it would take 35 years to finalize co-management agreements for the country’s remaining 285 gazetted forests.“Not all forest communities are well organized,” Mwaura says. “Some are known to abet logging, making it difficult to bring them on board.”A three-dimensional map of Mukogodo Forest the Yiaku used to plan reforestation and enforcement efforts. The map was destroyed by herders who invaded the forest in search of pasture last year. Image courtesy of the Yiaku Laikipiak Trust.Moreover, increasingly frequent droughts, rapid population growth, high competition for food and pasture, and increasing demand for energy are driving communities into Kenya’s forests, escalating deforestation. “Population pressure and [a] scramble for grazing pasture from outsiders is proving a challenge towards introducing this model to other gazetted forests in the country,” Mwaura says.Kenya’s deforestation problem is serious. Forests account for about 7.4 percent of Kenya’s total land area, down from 12 percent 50 years ago. In 2016 the government announced a goal to increase the country’s forest cover to 10 percent by 2022.Jackson Bambo is the national coordinator for the Kenya Forests Working Group, a Nairobi-based coalition of governmental, nongovernmental and community groups that promotes sustainable forest management. Like Mwaura, he attributes the slow progress in bringing indigenous and local communities into forest management partly to communities taking a long time to form the required CFAs. But he lays much of the blame on the government, for failing to make clear how the communities would be compensated for their efforts, and also for dragging its heels.“The process has been slow because the Forest Act 2005 did not have timelines and so KFS took long to set up and also to develop the necessary guidelines, forest management plans and forest management agreements,” Bambo says.He says the Forest Conservation and Management Act, from 2016, addresses the issue of incentives, as well as gender representation, and ensures communities will have access to finances through a designated trust fund. He says he’s hopeful this will move the process forward. “The new law ensures communities’ interests are taken into account. We expect to see more communities willing to collaborate with authorities in the war against deforestation,” Bambo says.For many indigenous communities, the Kenyan government has a long way to go. Even as it has recognized the Yiaku’s land and forest rights and encouraged them to take control of their ancestral forest, it has been evicting other indigenous forest dwellers, often violently.For instance, the Sengwer and the Ogiek, both hunter-gatherer groups in the west of the country, have for years fought for their land rights and demanded to be involved in the management of their ancestral forests. Yet they remain in conflict with the authorities, who blame them for forest destruction. Earlier this year the European Union suspended a $35 million conservation project after the Kenyan government violently evicted Sengwer communities from a forest they claim.Moreover, Kenya’s forest authorities have a severe credibility problem. Amid a public outcry this year over rapid deforestation, the government imposed a nationwide ban on logging that has been extended until next November, and fired the head of the KFS. In April, a government task force appointed to study the issue released a scathing report that held the KFS itself largely responsible for the loss of forest cover, saying officers turning a blind eye or in some cases even participated in illegal logging. “The Kenya forest service has institutionalized corruption and the system is replete with deep-rooted corruptive practices, lack of accountability and unethical behavior,” the report states.A Yiaku man points to solar panels atop a school where children are taught the Yiaku language and culture. The Yiaku are working to preserve their traditional knowledge, including longstanding approaches to conserving Mukogodo Forest. to Image by Shadrack Kavilu for Mongabay.New threats, new approachesAgainst the backdrop of this turbulent national scene, the Yiaku face challenges of their own.One is mounting pressure on Mukogodo Forest from neighboring communities, intensified by climate change. The region has been gripped by a series of droughts in recent years that are lasting longer and becoming more intense. A racially charged conflict flared up last year between pastoralist communities and private ranchers near Mukogodo over dwindling pasture and water points. The drought forced Samburu herders to move into Mukogodo from the north in search of pasture, leaving a trail of destruction in the forest.Over the years, the Yiaku have had a management plan that allocated these pastoralists some grazing land in designated parts of the forest during the dry seasons. The arrangement has helped mitigate conflict for ages, ensuring the pastoralists’ herds don’t destroy the forest, according to Koinante. But Yiaku leaders fear the herders’ recent defiance of the agreement could fuel conflict and open the way for illegal loggers, jeopardizing the forest’s health and the community’s hard-earned rights to the forest.“We want the government to intervene during such incidences so that they can help us safeguard the forest resources,” Koinante says.One tool the Yiaku have come up with in response to these emerging challenges is a three-dimensional map of the forest. The Yiaku have used it to identify which areas to reforest and what tree species to plant. They’ve also used it to highlight the porous stretches of the forest’s boundaries, so they can determine where to mount beehives to keep intruders away. “You can’t cut trees where there are bees, for fear of being attacked,” Koinante says.Another imminent challenge is the Yiaku’s precarious position as a people. While conservationists tout the community’s traditional forest conservation practices as a solution to Kenya’s deforestation problem, fears are emerging that those very traditions could be fast dying.The small community has been assimilating to the culture of its pastoral Maasai neighbors, to the extent that they are often referred to as Mukogodo Maasai. Only two Yiaku people now speak their language, Yakunte, fluently, and UNESCO has classified it as extinct.To ensure the Yiaku culture and ecological knowledge don’t die with the elders, the community has initiated several projects.“We are identifying, collecting and documenting this knowledge to safeguard it for future generations,” Koinante says. “Already we have started Yiaku classes where the young are taught traditions and culture by the elders.”The community also recently built a museum to document and preserve their traditional knowledge for future generations. But it was destroyed together with the 3D map last year by the invading Samburu herders. According to Koinante, the herders used the museum as an encampment and everything in it as fuel for cooking and warmth. The Yiaku are now in the process of recreating the map and looking for a safer location near settlements to rebuild the museum, she says.A Yiaku man inspects the damage to a recently built museum of Yiaku culture. Herders who invaded Mukogodo Forest in search of pasture last year used the museum as an encampment. Image courtesy of the Yiaku Laikipiak Trust.For now, the Yiaku’s model appears to be working. Whether it can survive in the long run depends on how well the community navigates the conflicts induced by climate change and how fast it can come up with a way to keep its culture vital.Shadrack Kavilu is a freelance environmental journalist based in Nairobi. He has published in local and international media outlets, including the Mail and Guardian and Thomson Reuters Foundation News.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the editor of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change And Conservation, Community Forestry, Community Forests, Community-based Conservation, Conservation, Development, Environment, Featured, Forests, Global Warming, Governance, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Human Rights, Indigenous Communities, Indigenous Groups, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Land Grabbing, Land Rights, Law Enforcement, Protected Areas, Sustainable Forest Management, Tropical Forests Article published by Rebecca Kessler Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Visa Denial

first_imgThe entire delegation, with one exception, of at least 18 Liberian artists that were due to perform at this year’s Liberian Musical Awards next month in the United States of America (USA), has been denied visas by the Consular Section at the US Embassy near Monrovia, an LMA official has said.Several of the artists reportedly denied visas include local industry headliners such as “Deng, Soul Fresh, Ericgeso, Marvelous, Magnetic, among others. LMA Public Relations Committee chair, Dede Dalmeida, made the startling revelation during a Daily Observer telephone interview.  Up to press time, the embassy did not comment on the visa denials. However, a source said some of the artists lack tangible and substantial establishment in Liberia to ensure that they would return when the awards ceremony shall have ended.Another reason for  disallowing them the visa, our source said, is that some of the artists do not have enough cash in their bank accounts to support themselves while in the US.Meanwhile, the Daily Observer has reliably learnt that, of the 12 artists who traveled to the US for last year’s LMA ceremony, only two of them returned, while the rest of them are yet to return. Disappointingly, Dalmatia disclosed that during the visa interviews, many of the artists were unable to convince the Consulate that they could return shortly after the awards program, and not go into hiding with the intention seeking asylum in order to stay in the U.S.“When the consulate finds out that you don’t have any asset or business establishment in Liberia that would convince the embassy that you will return upon the completion of the ceremony, definitely the embassy will not grant you any visa to travel to the U.S.,” Dalmeida explained.“We don’t have any say in the visa process.  The decision as to whether the artists receive or are denied visas is left with the US Consulate.  Our role as  LMA is, among other things, to  extend an invitation to the artists,” to participate in the ceremony,” she stressed.During the launch of the LMA’s  first edition last year, David Mell, Shadow, Benevee, J.D. Donzo and Bernice Blackie travelled to the U.S. on invitation from the LMA; likewise D12, Pitty D’Best, Infectious Michael, DSP, and Tan Tan.  Only Tan Tan and Bernice returned.  Bernice has since gone back to the US, however.  With this latest development, artists are being challenged to have assets that would make them responsible citizens so as to convince the embassy of their status. With the nightmare being encountered by the more than 18 artists being denied, Dalmeida said, it was only Tamba W. Bundor, executive director of T-bund Studio, whom the consulate provided a visa for the trip.“Tamba is a man with assets in Liberia, and for this reason, the Embassy sees him as a person trustworthy enough to attend the awards and come back.” Accordingly, Dalmeida is now left with no alternative but to keep hoping against hope that the time shall come one of these days that the consulates could restore trust in Liberian artists and allow them to travel to the U.S., confident that they will return to their native land to contribute to national development. “We did our best in the interview, but it seems that the issue of credibility and the relationship between LMA and the US Embassy in Monrovia are at stake,” a denied artist has said. “It is impossible that all the artists that received the invitation and were interviewed could be denied visa except for one; something went on wrong somewhere.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Ombachi, Ambaka open up on Kenya 7s tribulations

first_imgOmbachi, nicknamed The Ghost Worker would ordinarily become a legend in his own right and a massive hero celebrated back home and most likely, his life taking a shift for the better. It was never actually to be.Dennis Ombachi in action at teh Dubai Sevens. The team lost their second match 48-5 against South Africa. PHOTO/KRUNot only did he ground the try that took Kenya to Rio, but he did it with the final play and with so much courage from distance that would have otherwise not been possible for a player not afraid to take risks.Close to four years on, the Nondescript man has taken yet another risk, speaking up on the harsh treatment Kenya Sevens players have gone through in the name of donning the red, Green and Black of the national team jersey and doing the flag proud.In a series of tweets on Friday evening, Ombachi laid bare the struggle he and his team-mates have been forced to go through as they drip blood and sweat in national colors.“At no point have I said that I was ashamed to represent my country, playing for Kenya has been my highest honor. I am ashamed at how me and my fellow players have been treated over the years and have still managed to perform while saying nothing,” Ombachi stated as he exposed what the players have been going through.whatever kenya sevens is going through is a product of no integrity or morals, its sad when players have to coach the coach employed and paid to coach them.— dennis ombachi (@ombachi13) May 24, 2019From being neglected due to injury and the players being forced to accept pay cuts, Ombachi expressed his disgust at the treatment meted on the players and his outcry was supported by team-mate Willy Ambaka.The two are some of the Kenya 7s senior players who refused to sign new contracts that included performance caps and drastically reduced salaries, a situation that has put Shujaa into a relegation dog fight this season.The world suffers a lot not because of the violence of bad people, but because of silence of good people. I stand with my brother @ombachi13. It’s sad what players go through year in year out. All we asked for is respect and good working conditions.— Willy Ambaka (@Willyambaka) May 24, 2019“I will be back soon broke as I left having represented Kenya for over 10 years in the world stage, it’s now sinking in how unappreciated we are back home, and no I never wasted my earnings, it’s just enough to survive,” Ombachi who is currently in Russia said.wait, also tribalism is the main reason we don’t have the best s&c coach in kenya, to hell with that container on gong road with their silly PR stunts, they will come for me, I am waiting.bye now for real— dennis ombachi (@ombachi13) May 24, 2019That’s the main reason I turned down @OfficialKRU call up to go help my country qualify for the World Cup,And instead went to russia 🇷🇺 coz I know I am appreciated there.we all know how that campaign went#integrity https://t.co/RhZwQSceH5— dennis ombachi (@ombachi13) May 24, 2019I had a nasty injury late 2017 playing for @OfficialKRU in Dubai and a few months later my salary was more than halved and I was taken from tier 1 to tier 2.The mental torture and trauma I went through was too much at some point 😔I BROKE MY LEG.— dennis ombachi (@ombachi13) May 24, 2019“I have said what I should have said years ago, I hope others will not go through what we went through and this is all I have to say”— dennis ombachi (@ombachi13) May 24, 2019He was supported by Ambaka who noted; “I mean it’s sad traveling and living in all the 5-star hotels and coming back home to a locked house because you haven’t paid rent, I mean how do you expect results with this kind of environment?”When you’ve had a taste of excellence you cannot go back to mediocrity. Kenya is a gold mine for talent but it’s sad how we nature it.— Willy Ambaka (@Willyambaka) May 24, 2019How can someone’s take home salary be 280 dollars a month?? Yet you are expected to perform at your level best🤦🏿‍♂️— Willy Ambaka (@Willyambaka) May 24, 2019Playing for Kenya is all that young rugby players want to do and it’s an honour to do so, but we deserve more and the future players deserve more. #bless— Willy Ambaka (@Willyambaka) May 24, 2019Kenyans on the interwebs joined in the conversation, voicing their support for the players and asking the Union to do better in managing the national teams.I love that you are speaking up for many of us @ombachi13. But what I love more is that you are in a better space, mentally and physically. NOTHING, NO ONE is worth your life and general well-being. I wish I has 0.5% of the courage you have to speak up! Viva brother!!— Miss Ora (@Sinaida_Aura) May 24, 2019It’s hard being a #Kenya7s player as Ombachi and co are saying.. You have to suspend careers outside the game and base yourself in Nairobi with all the capital city’s living expenses.— Eric Njiru (@Erik_Njiru) May 24, 2019Surely we can’t be paying a player on national duty 28k p.m. The sad state of Kenyan rugby. #Kenya7s https://t.co/9JhqGj89mV— Stephen Musyoka (@smusyoka) May 24, 2019Those rants are the reason last year we tried #BoycottKRU…. But watu wakajiona patriots sana…. Fans have a voice to send a message to the Union too… The mess there is horrible….— aleckie ronald (@SirAlexas) May 24, 2019But @KenyaSevens are rich boys of Rugby, you haven’t met gallant sons of @KenyaSimbas and daughters of @kenyalioness and accompanying cover up and intimidation. #LetPeopleTalk— Tungsten™ (@kollonabiswa) May 24, 20190Shares0000(Visited 5 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Kenya Sevens stars Dennis Ombachi and Willy Ambaka in training at a Gym Session on September 5, 2018. PHOTO/APO GroupNAIROBI, Kenya, May 15 – On November 15, 2015, Dennis Ombachi took one of the most historic runs in his rugby career; from close to 70m away, he put on the afterburners, shoved away two markers with his powerful right hand before stepping inside and out to head under the posts to dot down the historic try that sent Kenya to their first ever Olympics.That try saw Kenya beat Zimbabwe 21-17 at the Bernard Stadium in Kempton Park, Johannesburg, South Africa and book a historic slot at the Rio Olympics in 2016, the first time Rugby Sevens was coming back to the Olympic Games in many decades.last_img read more

Murray out, Federer, Djokovic in semis

first_imgSeven-time champion Roger Federer reached his ninth All England Club semi-final with a 3-6, 7-6 (7/5), 6-4, 6-4 victory over compatriot Stan Wawrinka, his 14th win in 16 meetings against the Australian Open champion.Federer will play either Kyrgios, the world number 144, or Canadian eighth seed Milos Raonic for a place in the final.The 23-year-old Dimitrov will be playing in his first Grand Slam semi-final against Djokovic who will be appearing his 23rd and 16th in his last 17 majors.Djokovic, the 2011 champion, defeated Croatia’s Marin Cilic for the 10th time in 10 meetings, clinching a battling 6-1, 3-6, 6-7 (4/7), 6-2, 6-2 triumph on Court One.Murray had hoped to become the first British man to successfully defend the Wimbledon title since Fred Perry in 1936 but the 27-year-old’s defeat snapped his 17-match winning streak at the All England Club.“I’m very disappointed with the way I started. I felt that gave him confidence at the beginning,” said Murray, who hasn’t reached a final since his 2013 Wimbledon triumph.“He played a very solid match, making few mistakes and a lot of returns. I just wish I’d made it tougher for him. It wasn’t a great day.”Dimitrov said he was pleased to get the job done in straight sets.“I am excited and happy to win through in straight sets. It’s never easy against Andy in front of his home crowd but today I was fortunate,” Dimitrov said.“I sensed in the warm up that his game was not at the highest level but I was already confident I could play at a high level and play good tennis.”After years of struggling to live up to the vast potential that has earned him numerous comparisons with Roger Federer — and the nickname ‘Baby Fed’ — this was a thrilling performance from a man who finally secured hisfirst win over a top-10 player at a Grand Slam at the fifth attempt.The world number 13 was playing in his first All England Club quarter-final, but he is a former junior Wimbledon champion and had underlined his grasscourt pedigree by winning the Queen’s Club title last month.Victory also assured him of making the top 10 next week, the first Bulgarian man to achieve such lofty status.Six-time major winner Djokovic went level with Pete Sampras and Rafael Nadal by making the last-four at a major for the 23rd time.“It was a tough five-setter. I knew that Marin would be aggressive. I took the first set and had chances to break in the second but didn’t take them,” said Djokovic.“I dropped serve and the momentum shifted but in the last two sets I regained control, swung through the ball, had more stability on the ground and I was getting my returns back.“Even though I allowed him back in, I am happy that I managed to find the right pace.”Federer reached his 35th Grand Slam semi-final with victory over Wawrinka who ran out of steam having played three times in three days.“Stan played great in the first two sets but maybe he struggled with his fitness a little,” said Federer who admitted he has been especially motivated at Wimbledon this year following his surprise second round loss toSergiy Stakhovsky 12 months ago.“Last year was a disappointment as Wimbledon is always a highlight of the year for me. I didn’t come close and I was very deflated.”Wednesday’s win was the 17-time Grand Slam champion’s 72nd match win at the All England Club, which moved him into second place on the all-time list ahead of Boris Becker and behind only Jimmy Connors.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000LONDON, July 2- Defending champion Andy Murray joined Rafael Nadal at the Wimbledon exit door Wednesday when he was sent crashing by Grigor Dimitrov who stormed into a semi-final clash with top seed Novak Djokovic.Dimitrov, the 11th seed, clinched a sensational 6-1, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 victory on Centre Court just 24 hours after world number one and two-time champion Nadal had been knocked out in the fourth round by Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios.last_img read more

Liverpool 2-1 Southampton: Sturridge strike sees off plucky Saints

first_imgLiverpool got their 2014/15 Premier League season off to a winning start with a 2-1 win against Southampton at Anfield, but it was a close run thing.Goals from Raheem Sterling and a winner from Daniel Sturridge sandwiched a Saints equaliser from Nathaniel Clyne, as the visitors put in an impressive performance, if not one good enough to claim a share of the points.Over 90 minutes Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet was the busier of the two goalkeepers, but the first real opportunity of note fell to the home side.It came after 20 minutes, when Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho found himself in space on the left-hand side of the box, but sent a tame effort straight into the hands of Saints shot stopper Fraser Forster.The Reds scored 100 Premier League goals last season and they soon found their shooting boots.A delightful left-foot pass from Jordan Henderson released Raheem Sterling, who side-footed past Forster on 23 minutes. Henderson enjoyed a much improved campaign last time out, and he showed both sides of his game in the build up to the goal, battling to win possession, then unleashing a through-ball that dissected the Saints’ defence, allowing the pacey Sterling to bear down on goal. The 19-year-old displayed maturity beyond his years, with a composed finish to make it 1-0.Southampton may have lost three players to Liverpool over the summer, but they were in no mood to lie down and lose without a fight at Anfield. The visitors took three points on Liverpool’s turf last season, and served warning that they were up for the challenge when a cross-cum-shot free-kick from James Ward-Prowse, which was heading for the top right corner, was just kept out by Liverpool’s Simon Mignolet.One minute into added time at the end of the first half, Mignolet was called into action again, when he tipped over a dangerous long range effort from Morgan Schneiderlin.Liverpool probably deserved to be ahead at the break, and nearly doubled their lead in the last attack of the first half when Forster parried a Sterling shot, but at 1-0 it was still very much game on.Whatever Saints boss Ronald Koeman said at half-time, his team came out for the second half in positive fashion and soon had Liverpool under pressure.On 55 minutes the visitors got the reward their efforts deserved, when Nathaniel Clyne rifled the ball into the top right hand corner of Mignolet’s goal. Clyne played a one-two with Serbian Dusan Tadic, who was closely marked by former Saints defender Dejan Lovren. Tadic took Lovren out of the equation with a clever backheel and the Saints’ marauding defender burst on to the return pass to level matters in front of a silenced Kop.It should have been 2-1 to the away team seven minutes later, when a lovely passing move from Southampton culminated in a ball across the box to Steven Davis, who found himself with plenty of space.The Saints midfielder opted for precision, but only side-footed a weak shot that Mignolet was able to save with ease.It was a moment everyone connected with Southampton will go to bed thinking about tonight, because that near miss seemed to wake up a slumbering Liverpool.A lovely combination between Sturridge and Coutinho soon after, saw the Brazilian staring into the whites of Forster’s eyes, but the Saints ‘keeper stood tall and made a save that was no less impressive for the fact that the assistant referee’s flag was raised.With 75 minutes on the clock, Reds boss Brendan Rodgers rolled the dice and sent on Saints old boy Rickie Lambert for Coutinho, who immediately made his presence felt in the box.A scramble in the penalty area led to a blocked Lambert effort, as Liverpool ramped up the pressure, and the home team duly took the lead on 78 minutes.Daniel Sturridge, who scored 24 goals for the Reds last season, was the poacher supreme in the six-yard box, converting from a Sterling header after Southampton had failed to clear a right wing cross.With that, the Reds may have expected to go marching on, but it was the Saints who stormed back down the field for the game’s next glorious chance.With time running out, Schneiderlin should have made it 2-2 when he lashed the ball with Mignolet’s goal gaping, but it hit the crossbar via the Belgian’s fingertips rather than the back of the net on 87 minutes, and the rebound was awfully nodded wide by Shane Long.Liverpool breathed a collective sigh of relief and will hope the result also breathes confidence into their season, because they will need to perform better than this if they are to challenge for the title again.Southampton, by contrast, will try to take positives rather than points. Aside from a promising performance, Saints fans can also console themselves with the fact that, though they lost to Liverpool on this occasion, they hopefully won’t lose any more players to the red half of Merseyside this season. 1 Daniel Sturridge scores Liverpool’s winner against Southampton last_img read more

Officials nervous about Fourth

first_imgCouncilman Richard Alarc n is appearing at an event today in Pacoima showing the danger of fireworks. Councilwoman Janice Hahn wants government to do more, however, and is calling for county officials to ban the sale of all fireworks. The city has banned the private sale of fireworks, but the county still allows it in certain areas. Hahn spokesman Erik Sanjurjo said city government also needs to follow up on actions taken against those who are caught setting off fireworks. Fire officials have a program this year to track complaints and develop a system to work with the Los Angeles Police Department to cite violators. As part of the preparations for summer, the LAFD also has stepped up its brush clearance program to require homeowners to clear brush at least 200 feet from around homes. rick.orlov@dailynews.com (213) 978-0390 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! With drought conditions leaving Los Angeles vulnerable to brush fires, city officials Monday said they have stepped up education and enforcement efforts to deal with fireworks and brush clearance. The Los Angeles Fire Department began its public-education program on fireworks June 1 and will continue it through the middle of July, department officials told the City Council’s Public Safety Committee. Several billboards have been posted. Public-service announcements are available for broadcast, and news conferences are planned to warn of the dangers of fireworks. The LAFD also has stepped up its program to require homeowners to clear brush at least 200 feet around homes. last_img read more

Former state Sen. Alquist dies at 97

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE‘Mame,’ ‘Hello, Dolly!’ composer Jerry Herman dies at 88 One of her husband’s achievements that continues to resonate is a 1993 bill he wrote preventing illegal immigrants from obtaining driver’s licenses or state-issued identification cards. The legislation was signed into law by then-Gov. Pete Wilson, a Republican. State Sen. Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, has attempted several times in recent years to reverse the law. “He was a very well-intentioned man, and other than that a pretty good Democrat,” Cedillo said. “It was just unfortunate that during that time period people felt compelled to respond to public pressure. … It was not a good day for Democrats, no question about it.” In 1994, Al Alquist wrote the bill creating the Department of Information Technology in response to a task force’s findings of technology problems in the Department of Motor Vehicles. The department was dissolved in 2002 amid an investigation into a controversial contract with Oracle Corp., with Alquist’s wife among those saying the department needed to be eliminated. Alquist was born Aug. 2, 1908, in Memphis, Tenn. He spent 40 years working with the railroads before his election to the Legislature. In addition to his wife, he is survived by a son, Alan Alquist; stepsons Peter and Bryan White; and five grandchildren. SACRAMENTO – Former state Sen. Al Alquist, who helped establish the California Energy Commission and wrote a bill denying driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants during more than three decades in office, died Monday from complications of pneumonia, his wife said. He was 97. He began his legislative career in 1962 when he was elected to the Assembly and served there four years before winning election to the Senate, where he served for 30 years. He was forced out by term limits in 1996. The Santa Clara Democrat was perhaps best known for his years as chairman of the powerful Senate budget committee. He also wrote bills creating the California Energy Commission and the Seismic Safety Commission, the latter reflecting the earthquake dangers facing his district. State Sen. Elaine Alquist, 61, D-Santa Clara, was at her husband’s side when he died at a skilled nursing home in Sacramento. His death came on the couple’s 13th wedding anniversary. A previous wife, Mai, died in 1989. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Calum Chambers will return to Arsenal a BETTER player, vows Middlesbrough boss

first_img1 Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka has vowed to send Calum Chambers back to Arsenal a better player than when he left.The 21-year-old England international arrived at the Riverside Stadium on a season-long loan deal as the summer transfer window drew to a close having found himself surplus to requirements at the Emirates Stadium.However, Karanka is convinced a man who cost the Gunners £16million when he moved from Southampton two summers ago will return to North London having benefited from his time on Teesside.Asked if Chambers had something to prove, the Spaniard said: “He has come here to help us. I brought him here to help him because at the end of the season, the main thing is that we can stay in the Premier League and Calum can go back to Arsenal as a better player.“Always the marks are at the end and for that reason, I think the marks will be good because he is a good player. He is coming to help us, to put pressure on different players and as a really, really good alternative for me.“I have had a lot of experience with players who have come here and maybe they hadn’t played the games they expected to play, but after coming here they went back to their clubs having lived an amazing experience and improving.“Sometimes it’s true that you have to play a lot of games, but sometimes players who haven’t played here went to other places and came back better players. It’s the same thing when we send players on loan.”Chambers could be handed his Boro debut in Saturday’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace at the Riverside, and his versatility across a back line which had already been significantly strengthened by the additions of Antonio Barragan, Bernardo Espinosa and Fabio da Silva plus keeper Victor Valdes is part of what attracted Karanka to him.The head coach said: “Sometimes in the market, you can find bargains. We were waiting until the end because the squad was almost complete and we were waiting for the right player.“Calum ticks all the boxes – he can play in different positions, he’s a really good player, he’s a good kid, so he was really important for us at the last moment and for sure he is going to be important at this club.”Chambers could be joined in the squad for the first time by 20-year-old winger Adama Traore, who completed a permanent move from Aston Villa on deadline day. Calum Chambers in action for Arsenal last_img read more