People and wildlife conservation in Tanzania


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People and wildlife conservation in Tanzania three case studies of shifting paradigms from the colonial to independence eras
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xii, 132 leaves : ; 29 cm.
Haslerig, Janet Miliah
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Wildlife Ecology and Conservation thesis, Ph. D   ( lcsh )
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Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 2000.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 120-131).
Statement of Responsibility:
by Janet Miliah Haslerig.
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Copyright 2000



For my Mama, Miliah Dickerson Haslerig, and with living memories of my Dad, John
Haslerig, and friend, Willie Ryles.


Funding for my research was provided through a cooperative effort between

Tuskegee University (USAID grant) and the University of Florida. Academic support

was received from the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Graduate Minority

Fellowship program, the Delores Auzenne Fellowship, and the U.S. Geological Survey.

For their assistance and support, I am sincerely indebted.

My sincere thanks go to my advisor, mentor, and friend Dr. Lawrence Harris

whose inspiring vision, enduring commitment, and advice guided me through this

process. I am eternally grateful for the moral support, counsel, and relentless guidance

from my committee members: Richard Bodmer, Michael Chege, Goran Hyden and

Patricia Werner. Thanks also to other faculty members from the Department of Wildlife

Conservation and Ecology, Raymond Carthy and Franklin Percival, who provided

additional support and made important contributions at various stages of my research.

A debt of gratitude is owed to numerous team members, staff, and students at

Sokoine University in Morogoro, Tanzania, who provided the logistical and technical

assistance needed in conducting my fieldwork. I especially thank the many participants

in the villages, Udzungwa and Mikumi National Parks, Mkomazi Game Reserve,

Tanzania National Park Authority, and the Tanzania Wildlife Department for their

invaluable contributions and assistance. Ziyah Mahfoud of IFAS Statistical Consulting

assisted with data analyses of questionnaires. Luther Quinn and the University of

Florida's Electronic and Dissertation consultants provided assistance with scanning and

other computer logistics. Editorial assistance was graciously provided by Carolyn

Horter, whose contribution greatly influenced the success of this endeavor.

Finally, I give many thanks and blessings to current and former staff of the

Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, my colleagues, mentors, friends, and

family for their steadfast support. Through all the frustrations, disappointments, joys and

laughter, I am truly thankful for each of them.



ACKNOW LEDGM ENTS ................................................................................................. iv

LIST OF FIGURES ............... ................................................ x

ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... xi


1 INTRODUCTION .....................................................................................................

Problem Statement ................................................................................................... 1
Changing Conservation Paradigms.................................................. ....................... 5
Conservation M management Approaches .................................. ............................. 7
Objectives ....................................................................................................... .......... 9
Chapter Format ....................................................................................................... 10


Scramble for Eden.... ............................................................................................. 13
M an and Nature in Tanganyika: Colonial Era........................................ ............ .. 16
Conservation Reawakening ................................................................................. 18
Formalizing Conservation................................................................................... 19
Nature of the Land .............................................................................................. 21
M an and Nature in Tanzania: Independence Era.................................................... 29
Political Environment .......................................................................................... 29
Current Nature of the Land .................................................................................. 33

3 STUDY AREAS AND M ETHODS ......................................................................... 40

Study Areas................................................................................................................ 44
Udzungwa National Park..................................................................................... 45
M ikumi National Park........................................................ .................................... 47
M komazi Game Reserve ...................................................................................... 49
M ethodology........................................................................................................... 56
SUA/TU Linkage Project................. .............................................................. 57
Project Villages................................................................................................... 58

Village-Level Activities ...................................................................................... 59
Questionnaires..................................................................................................... 60
Study Tour .......................................................................................................... 63

APPROACHES IN THREE PROTECTED AREAS ......................................................64

Udzungwa and M ikumi National Parks................................................................... 65
Contemporary Conservation Management Approaches......................................... 65
Current State of Affairs....................................................................................... 68
M komazi Game Reserve......................................................................................... 69
Historical Approaches......................................................................................... 69
Contemporary Approaches ...................................................... ......................... 72
Current State of Affairs................................................................................. ... ...... 77
High Court decision ........................................................................................ 77
Illegal encroachment....................................................................................... 80
Internet............................................................................................................ 81
Discussion............................................................................................................... 83

UDZUNGWA AND MIKUMI NATIONAL PARKS ..............................................85

Questionnaire Surveys ............................................................................................ 85
Household........................................................................................................... 85
Socio-economic and background information...................................................... 86
Knowledge of conservation................................................... ....................... 86
Attitudes toward the park and conservation.................................... ....... .... 88
Crop damage and animal loss ................................... .................................. 94
Village Leaders................................................................................................... 97
Concerns of living near the park............................................. ...................... 97
Suggestions to reduce crop damage and animal loss ......................................... 97
W omen's Group.................................................................................................. 98
Concerns of living near the park................................................................. 98
Suggestions to reduce crop damage and park relations ................................. ... 99
Park Staff .......................................................................................................... 100
Problems facing local communities near the park............................................ 100
Future management priorities ........................................................................... 100
Study Tour ............................................................................................................ 101
Discussion............................................................................................................. 104

6 SUM M ARY AND CONCLUSIONS ................................... ...................................106


A HOUSEHOLD QUESTIONNAIRE............................................ ....................... 111

B VILLAGE LEADERS QUESTIONNAIRE .............................................................116

C PARK STAFF QUESTIONNAIRE ..........................................................................118

REFEREN CES .......................................................................................................... 120



Table Page

1. Comparison of conservation management approaches........................................... ..2

2. Internet searches for the Mkomazi Game Reserve ...........................................................82

3. Number of households and summary of socio-economic and background information..87

4. Response to questions concerning the general knowledge and access to conservation
inform ation............................................................................................. ......... 88

5. Attitude toward and benefits from the National Park.......................................................90

6. Views toward poachers and knowledge of trespassing penalties ...................................91

7. General attitude toward the current status, future management, and use of the
Park ............................................................................................................ 92

8. Attitude toward the parks and positive benefits extended to the village ........................93

9. Range of estimated economic loss per household, per growing season, for crop
and livestock (Tanzania shilling)....................................................................95

10. Crop and livestock losses according to species of wild animals ...................................95

11. Measures used to prevent crop and livestock loss and suggested measures to be
taken by Park authorities.............................................................................. .... 96

12. Summary of Village Leaders and Sanje Women's Group opinions about village
concerns; their suggested measures to be taken to reduce crop and animal
losses, and relations with the Park ...................................................... ...........99

13. Summary of Udzungwa and Mikumi National Park staff opinion of village
level problems and park management challenges.............................................. 102


Figure Page

1. Conservation management approaches and indicators of compliance and non-
com pliance..................................................................................................... 3

2. M ap of Tanzania..................................................................................... ......................41

3. Map of Udzungwa National Park .................................................................................46

4. Map of Mikumi National Park and Selous Game Reserve Ecosystem............................48

5. Map of Mkomazi Game Reserve .....................................................................................50

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy



Janet Miliah Haslerig

December 2000

Chairman: Dr. Lawrence D. Harris
Major Department: Wildlife Ecology and Conservation

Throughout most of Africa a major shift in paradigms has occurred regarding

wildlife conservation. The current global practice of setting aside large tracts of land is

now confronted with the human consequences of strict protectionist policies designed

solely to conserve wildlife.

Originally established to safeguard natural resources, protected areas are now

forced to address a range of social objectives, namely, rural poverty, gender inequality,

plight of indigenous people, market failures, economic and social injustices. From this

perspective, the protectionist model has been judged a failure and is no longer appropriate

within the current contextual setting of East Africa.

Within the last few decades and in light of mounting biodiversity and socio-

political challenges, a "new" approach to conservation has emerged. But unlike its

predecessor, the community-based conservation model calls for community participation,

local decision-making, and equitable means of sharing economic, social, cultural, or

ecological benefits from protected areas. Despite its overwhelming appeal, the

community-based conservation model must not be hailed as a panacea by which to solve

a variety of complex ecological and social challenges facing many developing countries.

Three case studies in Tanzania, Mkomazi Game Reserve, Udzungwa and Mikumi

National Parks are reviewed and analyzed to compare and contrast the advantages and

disadvantages of both the protectionist and community-based conservation models. A

household questionnaire was used to assess local conservation attitudes in four villages

adjacent to Mikumi and Udzungwa National Parks. The results show that local people

were aware of the purpose of the parks and their benefits to their respective communities

and to Tanzania. Although over 90% of the respondents had never visited (93%) nor

worked (95%) for either park, they nevertheless opposed its abolishment (62%) and also

rejected giving the land to those who claimed to need it (81%). They also were averse to

allowing hunting (95%) and other natural resource extractions (77%).

Although the protectionist model has made significant contributions in

safeguarding Tanzania's wealth of biodiversity, current evidence suggests that a

combination of conservation approaches should be reviewed thoroughly for applicability

and long-term sustainability within the current context of local communities and

protected areas.


Problem Statement

In the twentieth century humankind has made tremendous strides in becoming

aware of the need to conserve natural resources. Despite increased awareness,

conservationists have not been able to agree on a common conservation approach that can

be applied universally at the local, regional, or national levels. The implementation of

these approaches continues to vary worldwide. In particular, in Africa's emerging

nations, the challenge has been to move forward from a colonial past to independent

nation status, with consequent responsibility for managing abundant natural resources

and biological diversity. Specifically in Tanzania, conservation approaches have

oscillated between the top-down, "protectionist" approach to a bottom-up, "community

based" approach (Table 1). This lack of consistence, in part, reflects an increasing

change in attitudes and thoughts that attempt to reconcile local people and natural

resources by coupling conservation with developmental activities that enhance the quality

of rural life.

Today, site-specific conservation approaches have changed as conservation

paradigms have shifted from purely scientific to sociological, political, and economic in

nature. Conservation approaches now embrace a wide range of multidisciplinary

interests, with the assumption that communities must be involved in various levels of

conservation planning, implementation, and enforcement and that their

participation in this process will make a difference. As park officials, scientists, and

others interact with members of the local communities, outcomes may be positive, but

also negative. The difference depends on management, the crucial component in

conservation approaches. How to resolve conflicts between contending views and

interests is a political question as much as it is a technical or scientific one. Compliance

or non-compliance is a function of how well conservation projects are managed (Figure

1). It is no exaggeration, therefore, to argue that the fate of wildlife and biodiversity

conservation in Africa rests as much on how people are treated as on wildlife strategies.

Table 1. Comparison of conservation management approaches
Approach Protectionist




Basis for decisions


Science emphasis

Management emphasis

Method of protection






Wild game


Conservation/sustainable use





People-park relationships

Community participation/laws

Three case studies, as presented in the following chapters, readily identify three

inherent problems associated with the various conservation management approaches as

pursued in the protected areas in this study: (1) participation versus cooperation, (2)

capture of the local peasantry, and (3) linking conservation with development. The

challenge for Tanzania, specifically the three case studies, is how to achieve cooperation

through a gradient of top-down, bottom-up management approaches that will bring about

the compliance of local communities to help achieve conservation goals (Figure 1).


(-) Zero sum gain/deadlock Co-mam gement (+) Positive sum gain

Local commit input

Non-compliance Bo Compliance

Figure 1. Conservation management approaches and indicators of compliance and non-

The first problem identifies an apparent disparity between the concepts of the

word, "participation" and "cooperation." At first glance, these two words may appear

interchangeable; however, participation is the act of taking part in an activity, whereas

cooperation is the act of working together to achieve a common aim (Encarta 2000). All

too often participation is defined in over simplistic and inaccurate terms that assume that

conservation goals will be accomplished by the mere act of soliciting community

involvement. Getting people to participate is a worthy goal, but it becomes clear that

conservation goals can best be achieved through cooperative efforts of the community.

"Capture" of the local people is the second inherent problem facing

conservationists. "Capture" is a relatively common term used by social scientists to

describe the relations of the state to the peasant population (Hyden 1986). However,

within the context of this discussion, "capture" will refer to efforts made by local and

international conservation authorities (the state), and non-governmental organizations

(NGOs) to achieve compliance through the "cooperation" of the citizenry in biodiversity

conservation efforts within protected areas that are managed through a variety of top-

down, bottom-up approaches (Figure 1). To accomplish conservation objectives,

conservation approaches often unrealistically assume that local communities have been

successfully "captured" by the various wildlife organizations and departments that seek

their support.

Throughout Africa and specially Tanzania, incentives are used to solicit the

participation and thereby "capture" of local people in exchange for their cooperation in

assisting with safeguarding protected area resources. Some of these incentives have

included, building dispensaries, schools, and shallow wells; assisting with transportation,

establishing tree nurseries, assisting with the control of crop-raiding animals; and

organizing revenue sharing opportunities. Other activities have included educational

campaigns aimed at informing communities of the local and global ecological and social

benefits obtained through their cooperative efforts of protection and sustainable use of the

natural resources.

It is widely assumed that once captured, the communities will cooperate more

easily with the conservation of biodiversity within protected areas. However, there are a

number of tactics ("weapons") that local communities and individuals may pursue to

appease or elude wildlife officials and organizations in an effort to obtain specific

products and services, or to avoid conflict, while at the same time managing to avoid

being fully "captured." Compliance is by no means a given, even when incentive

structures are built into the projects or where management is initiated from the bottom-up

(Figure 1).

Linking conservation objectives to community interests is the third problem that

conservationists must address. These links must be clearly stated, strengthened, and

actively pursued in the application of community-based conservation activities. Whether

this link is weak or strong, it must nevertheless hinge upon achieving long-term

biodiversity sustainability. However, one of the critical questions remains unanswered:

Can community support for conservation goals be gained and/or sustained when only

provisionary community services, such as the construction of a dispensary, schools,

roads, etc., are provided; or must conservation activities establish a mechanism or

framework that encourages local community empowerment, active decision-making, and

the devolution of management authority in an effort to obtain the cooperation of rural

communities in protecting biodiversity?

Changing Conservation Paradigms

The paradigm shift alluded to above is the result of several globally significant

events that have occurred within the last few decades. The following chapters note that

these changes are the result of evolving attitudes and beliefs shaped by a variety of

events, policies, organizations, and scientific knowledge.

Throughout history, the conservation movement has undergone gradual changes

in terminology, its professions, and management approaches, largely in response to new

challenges, knowledge, concerns, and attitudes (Western and Wright 1994). First,

conservation terminology underwent a series of vernacular transitions. Terms such as

vermin and game have been replaced with terms such as wildlife and biological diversity

(biodiversity). In addition, new words and phrases such as conservation network,

biodiversity hotspots, ecosystem, landscape, parks-for-people, and etc. have become

increasingly popularized.

Second, conservation as a profession has evolved. This transition took the form

of changing the game manager and wildlife biologist to conservation biologists, natural

resource managers, and landscape or ecosystem specialists. Today, conservation is no

longer confined to zoological or botanical gardens, the laboratory, the field, the

classroom, or the academically-trained conservation professional. The "new"

conservationists include anthropologists, political scientists, economists, lawyers,

engineers, human-rights activists, sociologists, scores of nonprofit organizations, and

private individuals (McNeely et al. 1990).

Finally, as the conservation profession has diversified, so have approaches to

management. Increasingly different perspectives on conservation problems are

incorporated into new multidisciplinary management approaches that attempt to consider

the legal, social, economic, biological, and political aspects of natural resource policies,

their costs and benefits, and their ultimate implementation and enforcement (Neumann

1998). These shifting perspectives extend worldwide and for this study (Table 1).

Conservation Management Approaches

Throughout the world several laws and natural resource policies have been

established. Laws were enacted and actions taken to ensure that wildlife, natural

resources, forests, and water catchment areas would be managed sustainably. For

Tanzania, the result has been a patchwork of laws and regulations at the national,

regional, and district levels that were often inappropriate, conflicting, overlapping,

unenforceable, and antagonistic (PERM 1995).

Uncoordinated policies and ineffective enforcement have gradually led to

increased concerns and heightened awareness in several key environmental areas that

include (1) land degradation, (2) environmental pollution, (3) deterioration of marine and

freshwater aquatic systems, (4) lack of access to clean water supplies, (5) habitat loss, (6)

loss of species, (7) deforestation, (8) global climate change, and (9) desertification

(Mugabe 1998, PERM 1995, Serageldin and Martin-Brown 1999).

These global environmental concerns are encountered throughout Tanzania (Berry

et al. 1982) and have developed over a long period of time. Many of these concerns may

be attributed, in varying degrees, to inadequate coordination of natural resource policies

between and within different governmental sectors, inadequate enforcement of existing

laws, underfunded and weak institutions, animosity held by local communities, and the

exclusion of local participation in natural resource management approaches. These

concerns present new challenges to the long-term sustained use of biodiversity and thus

call for innovative approaches to their management (McNeely et al. 1990, Neumann


Protectionist model. In Tanzania, the protectionist conservation model, which

included setting land aside as protected areas, made significant contributions in terms of

safeguarding representative samples of this country's biodiversity wealth until the

present. Overall, the implementation of these initial models was socially insensitive and

in many cases cruel and unjust. People were often displaced to give room for wildlife

conservation. Experience over the years has shown the inadequacy of this approach. In

circumstances of poverty, people will not comply with rules and regulations that threaten

their livelihoods. This "exclusionary" model of protecting wildlife has become

increasingly inappropriate in the post-independence period in East Africa. People and

their elected representatives as well as voluntary organizations have articulated a

determined opposition to this paternalist approach (Neumann 1995). The mere act of

setting boundaries has brought changes only within those boundaries, while long-term

problems outside these areas have remained unchanged or have deteriorated with the

passage of time.

Another shortcoming recently identified with the protectionist model is the result

of new expectations placed upon protected areas today; this is true not only in Africa but

also worldwide. Originally established to conserve nature, protected areas must now

address a range of social objectives, such as "rural poverty, social injustice, gender

inequality, plight of indigenous people" (Neumann 1998:57), market failures, economic

injustices, administrative incompetence, corruption, and the like (Brandon 1998). As

such the protectionist model has been judged a failure for not meeting these new

expectations. In some cases, this model has been unjustly identified, accused, convicted,

and condemned. Although the protectionist model may have been correct regarding the

biological aspects of wildlife conservation, it has failed to address the human-dimension

aspects of biodiversity conservation.

Community-based models. Within the last few decades and in light of mounting

biodiversity and social challenges, a "new" set of approaches to conservation has

emerged, commonly referred to as community-based conservation (CBC). These new

conservation approaches, unlike their predecessors, call for community participation,

local decision-making, and equitable means of sharing economic, social, cultural, or

ecological benefits accrued through protecting biodiversity. In return, however, local

communities are expected to assist with the protection of designated protected areas and

refrain from unsustainable and "illegal" natural resource practices. Communities form

partnerships with park administrators to protect biodiversity through sustainable

management practices that ultimately provide for their livelihood, health, and well-being.

For many countries, including Tanzania, CBC has become that last glimmer of

hope that may provide the answer to conserving natural resources around the world while

simultaneously providing socio-economic benefits to an ever-increasing human

population and its demands. Whatever vernacular term or phrase used, be it CBC or

integrated conservation development projects (ICDP), it is clear that active community

participation and cooperation is the key element in the success of most long-term

conservation programs.


My study has two components, a comparison and a survey. I have presented a

comparison of conservation management approaches for three protected areas in

Tanzania: Udzungwa National Park, Mikumi National Park, and Mkomazi Game

Reserve. These case studies represent a unique opportunity in which to review a gradient

of conservation management approaches and their subsequent implementation challenges

and accomplishments.

The second phase of this study focuses on the analyses of questionnaire surveys

for two (Udzungwa and Mikumi National Parks) of the three protected areas. The

purpose of these surveys was to ascertain local conservation attitudes, knowledge,

challenges, and benefits of the National Park as well as to elicit future management


For both the comparison and the surveys, the objectives are to review issues of

conservation by:

1. Assessing the legacy of colonial policies on natural resources in Tanzania. This

provides an historic basis for understanding how conservation policies were

initiated by colonial German and British administrators.

2. Using historical and contemporary biodiversity conservation approaches and local

community conservation attitudes in an attempt to frame twenty-first century

management options for parks and protected areas in Tanzania.

3. Identifying indicators of compliance and non-compliance of various conservation

management approaches.

Chapter Format

The dissertation is organized into six chapters: (1) Introduction, (2) A Historical

Survey of Natural Resources in Tanzania, (3) Study Areas and Methods, (4) Results and

Discussion: Management Approaches in Three Protected Areas, (5) Results and

Discussion: the Case of Udzungwa and Mikumi National Parks, and (6) Summary and


Chapter 1. The general problem of implementing various conservation

management approaches is presented as well as a brief overview of changing

conservation paradigms and a continuum of management approaches (protectionist and

community-based), followed by objectives and chapter format.

Chapter 2. A historical overview of natural resources and early land stewardship

in Tanzania is provided, including a review of colonialism, post-colonialism, the

beginning of a conservation ethic, and the subsequent expansion of protected areas and

policy influences on the nature of the land.

Chapter 3. The study areas are described for Tanzania and the three case studies:

Udzungwa National Park (UNP), Mikumi National Park (MNP), and Mkomazi Game

Reserve (MGR). The methodology section provides a general description of major

methodological points and research tools used. The Sokoine University of Agriculture

and Tuskegee University (SUA/TU) Linkage project, a USAID-funded collaborative

project between Tuskegee University, Alabama, and Sokoine University of Agriculture in

Tanzania, is discussed. Objectives and goals are given for the overall project, along with

specific village-level program activities for four local communities (Maharka, Msongozi,

Kisawasawa, and Sanje) where proximity to protected areas presents various natural

resource challenges. These challenges, as well as local community conservation attitudes

and knowledge are assessed through household, village leader, women's group, and park

staff surveys.

Chapter 4. Results and discussion of historical and contemporary conservation

management approaches are presented. The current state of affairs discusses recent

events and challenges facing the three protected areas.

Chapter 5. Results of household, village leaders, women's group, and park staff

questionnaire surveys for UNP and MNP are presented. Questionnaires were used to

ascertain community level conservation attitudes and knowledge, while the analyses were

used to suggest future management options, challenges, and accomplishments. This is

followed by results of a study tour for both parks.

Chapter 6. A summary of conservation challenges and concluding remarks are



Scramble for Eden

For purposes of the temporal use of natural resources, I chose the European

Renaissance as my benchmark referent. This period was not chosen because of any

mystical event, or for that matter any regional phenomenon. Instead, it is a familiar

period for most European and Anglo-Americans with which to relate their insights,

attitudes, and motives behind the vast cultural and political changes that followed.

Near the turn of the fifteenth century, gaining control of natural resources (e.g.,

gold, ivory, spices, timber, porcelain, etc.) had become a highly competitive global

phenomenon (Hale 1977). With Christopher Columbus's "discovery" of 'The New

World' in 1492 (Shillington 1989:173), the "reconquista" of formerly Moorish-controlled

southern Europe in the same year was not a simple coincidence (Harris and Eisenberg

1989). This period has often been referred to as a turning point in the history of Western

Civilization (Potter 1964) and thus the "beginning of all real progress" (Ralph 1973:2).

Moreover, it was the single most defining point underlying the flourishing of colonialism

around the world and for the subsequent arguments that followed by both admirers and

detractors of the colonial period (Ralph 1973).

By the late eighteenth century and in the wake of the emergence of "legitimate

commerce" in place of commerce such as the unmonitored slave and ivory trade, a

massive colonial onslaught swept through most of Africa (Mwalyosi 1993a, Shillington

1989:302). Interested in gaining control over the natural resource-based trading systems

in Africa and securing a "captive" market for their products (Coulson 1982), commonly

referred to as the "Scramble for Africa," European colonial powers descended upon the

continent (Nangoli 1986, Shillington 1989). Captivity, disease, famine, religion, and

guns played essential roles in advancing foreign imperialism across the African continent

(Crosby 1986, Kjekshus 1977a, Iliffel979, Nangoli 1986, Shillington 1989, Temu 1969).

What was left of the natural resources and the people is still being discovered, and

consequent histories revised.

Early land stewardship. It is commonly believed, yet sharply debated, that

indigenous cultures had achieved an equilibrium or balance with the native biota (de Blij

and Capon 1969) and as such were considered responsible stewards of the land (Johnson

and Anderson 1988). Throughout recorded history every culture has had some form of

customary beliefs that were/are used to manage, control, or moderate the distribution and

exploitation of their natural resources (Englehardt 1962, Grzimek 1962, Olindo and

Mbaelele 1994). These have, for the most part, been effective, either intentionally or

otherwise (IIED 1994). Generally, these beliefs evolved over many generations and were

based on traditional religion, mystical laws, taboos, rituals, etc. (Western and Wright

1994). Such beliefs forbade hunting in specific areas and/or the taking of certain wildlife

species and the eating of certain foods (Olindo and Mbaelele 1994). Moreover, some

indigenous cultures were believed or imagined to have maintained a harmonious relation

with wildlife and nature (Neumann 1998, Olindo and Mbaelele 1994). For example, the

Maasai, in East Africa are often championed as "friends" to wildlife because their

traditional culture forbade hunting wild game for food, and they generally did not

cultivate (IUCN 1963, Kabigumila 1992). As a result, it was widely assumed that their

traditional culture (transhumance pastoralism) not only did not interfere with, but actually

protected wildlife and natural resources (Carr 1964, IUCN 1963, Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998,

Neumann 1998). Contrary to this belief, wildlife and man have always competed for

resources, often to the detriment of both wildlife and its habitat (Kjekshus 1977a); the

balance was probably dynamic at best and tenuous at worst.

There are two main schools of thought about the ecological balance maintained by

"indigenous" cultures: first, that the "noble savage," was capable of managing his/her

own resources while living in harmony with the environment (Johnson and Anderson

1988); second, that the lack of technology prevented many of the indigenous groups from

completely liquidating their natural resources (Western and Wright 1994). The degree to

which indigenous groups were or were not in control of managing their resources is a

debate that I choose to eschew.

Although not necessarily significantly pronounced in East Africa, the late 1800s

was a period of "ecological imperialism," a term coined by A.W. Crosby (1986) to

denote "the biological changes which follow contact but precede political domination"

(Johnson and Anderson 1988:4). However, for Tanganyika and most of East Africa, the

end of the nineteenth century meant the end of black Africans' control over balanced, co-

evolved ecological systems (de Blij and Capon 1969). This native control came to an

abrupt end because of the breakdown of native land tenure systems, reduced labor force,

resettlement schemes, disease, famine, cultural erosion, and colonial pacification that

swept through the country during this period (Iliffe 1979, Kjekshus 1977a, Mwalyosi

1993a). Moreover, the sustainable use of common natural resources became increasingly

threatened by the deterioration of customary rules governing their use as colonial policies

contributed to the transformation of indigenous cultures and traditional range

management practices (IUCN 1963, Mwalyosi 1993b).

In addition, centuries of ecological expertise and strict biologically-based taboos

and customs for regulating natural resource use (IUCN 1963, Johnson and Anderson

1988) were shattered in large part when Christian missionaries descended upon the

country (Englehardt 1962, Grzimek 1962). Some of these missionaries, under the guise

of a religious order to "save the heathens from the everlasting fires of purgatory, began

the task of stealing the culture from the very souls of indigenous peoples in the name of

Christian rightenous and piety" (Maser 1999:217, Nangoli 1986, Shillington 1989). This

is recognized as one of the greatest ironies of religion (Maser 1999) and the beginning of

cultural homogenization around the globe. Finally, directly or indirectly, Christian

missions paved the way for the assertive European imperial control that was to follow

(Nangoli 1986, Shillington 1989).

Man and Nature in Tanganyika: Colonial Era

The earliest known written reference to the East African coast was recorded in

100 A.D. in a Greek handbook entitled "The Periplus of the Erythrean Sea" (The Voyage

of the Indian Ocean) (Alpers 1969:35, Shillington 1989:122). During this period Greek

and Roman traders referred to the East African coast as "Azania" (Shillington 1989:122).

The East African region is undoubtedly rich in historical details and events, but not until

foreign domination (e.g., Arab, Portuguese, Spanish, and European) in the nineteenth

century was this history explicitly captured and described in written format and made

accessible in the West. Suffice it to say, modem written history of the East African

coastal region did not begin in the nineteenth century, but it is at this point that I begin

my synoptic history of the region.

In February 1885, Germany declared the status of protectorate over an East

African region that was subsequently referred to as German East Africa and is now

known as the nation state of the United Republic of Tanzania (Berry et al. 1982, Coulson

1982, Shillington 1989). Although administered by the German East African Company

(Deutsche Ostafrikanische Gesellschaft) prior to 1891, full administrative authority was

later transferred to the Imperial German Government (Coulson 1982, Gwassa 1969).

After the defeat of Germany in WW I at the hands of Britain, United States, and France,

German East Africa was converted to a British "Mandated Territory" and was

subsequently referred to as Tanganyika Territory [Tanganyika] in 1920 (Biermann 1998,

life 1979, Neumann 1998). From 1920 to 1946, Tanganyika was administered by a

mandate of the League of Nations (predecessor of the United Nations) whereby the

British were "to safeguard the interests of African inhabitants and prepare them for

eventual self government" (Shillington 1989:315), which required Britain "to promote

the material and moral well-being and the social progress of [the] inhabitants" lifee


After WW II, Tanganyika became a "trusteeship territory" of the United Nations

(officially organized on June 26, 1945) but officially administered as a British colony

(Biermann 1998, Coulson 1982:44, NYPL 1993:891, Nyenzi 1998, Uiowa 1999). In

other words, Tanganyika remained a British colony (Biermann 1998). Tanganyika

gained independence in December 1961. Subsequently, it became the United Republic of

Tanzania when the mainland of Tanganyika was united with the People's Republic of

Zanzibar on April 26, 1964 (Berry et al. 1982, Shillington 1989).

Conservation Reawakening

Before the emergence of formalized conservation throughout the world, the

wanton destruction of natural resources proceeded toward complete annihilation of

several species and habitats (Carr 1964, Heck 1962); no species or habitat seemed to be

immune to the raw destructive forces of humans of alien ethnic values and new

technologies (Heck 1962). This was not restricted to Africa by any means, but was more

or less a widespread global phenomenon. In the historical blink of an eye, the onslaught

was over and cultures, states, economies, and indeed ecology were vastly transformed

forever (Carr 1964, Pringle 1982).

Extreme measures were necessary to stop the senseless destruction of wildlife and

natural systems that had been used primarily to satisfy the demands of distant

industrialized countries for "luxury" items (e.g., slaves, ivory, feathers, furs, hide, etc.).

With the realization that these and other potentially deleterious environmental changes

could affect human health and threaten the very essence of human existence (Maser 1999,

McNeely et al. 1990), the general mentality of the world appeared to shift toward a

conservation ethic or consciousness (Anderson 1998).

The evolutionary process of man's attitude toward his environment is briefly

summarized as follows. Early in the evolution of modem humans, man respected nature

(IUCN 1963). Rituals, customs, and rules evolved with the passage of time along

intergenerational lines. Man, for the most part, was simply an element of and paid

allegiance to his natural environment; his environment satisfied his basic needs and

provided for his security (Heck 1962). Eventually, man adapted to his environment and

gained self-confidence, and greater awareness about changes in his surroundings. This

period was followed by man's aggressive, exploitative behavior, which ultimately led to

his divorce from nature (Heck 1962). As a species, man set himself outside of and above

nature (IUCN 1963). A state of unbalance accompanied by the extinction of species and

the destruction of the land followed thereafter. Finally, we are at the point of responsible

readjustment and environmental reawakening (Heck 1962). Man has entered the stage of

reconciliation, renewed responsibility, and respect for the environment by providing for

the long-term, sustained use of its natural resources (IUCN 1963).

Formalizing Conservation

Throughout most of the world a formalized conservation approach did not emerge

until the end of the nineteenth century. Fortunately, this process was rapid and/or

simultaneous around much of the globe. This process was not the result of one culture or

nation but perhaps a coincident or a simultaneous realization that although earth's

resources could provide enormous goods and services as well as economic benefits, they

were otherwise limited and their depletion was increasingly threatened (Serageldin and

Martin-Brown 1999).

In 1872, the United States established its first National Park, Yellowstone

National Park. This is hailed as the world's first modern effort of conservation (Milne

and Waugh 1994, Neumann 1998, Western et al. 1994, Wyant 1982) (although President

Abraham Lincoln transferred Yosemite Valley Park to the state of California in 1864, it is

rarely paid respect as the first national park in the United States). A predominant theme

was that "in the absence of cultural nationalism" the United States should focus on

protecting its natural history in search of an American identity (Neumann 1998, Runte

1987:282). This was to be accomplished by preserving the more rich and dramatic of her

national natural resources. By the early 1960s, the U.S. National Park model based upon

the ideals of enclaves of pristine nature (exclusion of people, restrictions on hunting, and

extraction of timber products, etc.), served as a blueprint for the establishment of national

parks around much of the world (McNeely et al. 1994, Neumann 1998).

In Africa, the movement to set-aside designated protected parks and preserves had

its effective start in 1897 with the gazettement of the Hluhluwe, Umfolozi, Umdhletshe

and St. Lucia Reserves in South Africa (Harris and Sullivan 1980, Pringle 1982). The

subsequent establishment of other African protected areas followed rapidly, with South

Africa's establishment of Kruger National Park (previously the Sabi Reserve) in 1898

(Carr 1964, Olindo and Mbaelele 1994). Today, Kruger National Park is hailed as the

prototype for most other national parks in Africa (Carr 1964, Neumann 1998) and

Africa's "first modern conservation area" (Olindo and Mbaelele 1994:49). This concept

was readily embraced because of Westerners' growing concern over the loss of Africa's

free-roaming wildlife and thus "wild Africa" (Carr 1964, Neumann 1998). Today,

modern Africa is facing many of the same environmental challenges that Europe,

America, and Asia faced years ago -- the rapid degradation of natural lands (Grzimek

1962), the realization of limiting resources, increased human demands for utilization

(Bennett 1993), all too rapidly rising human populations (Carr 1964), heightened human-

rights concerns, and the centuries old human-wildlife conflicts.

Nature of the Land

Land alienation. Initially, physical displacement, either voluntarily or through

forced eviction, and confinement of the local people to marginal lands were tactics

pursued by German and British colonial administrators to combat sleeping sickness

throughout the region (Carr 1964, Kjekshus 1977a). These resettlement schemes resulted

in huge areas devoid of human population. In addition, diseases, natural, man-made, or

induced calamities also contributed to the depopulation of specific areas (Iliffe 1979,

Kjekshus 1977a). Once devoid of people, these lands were often reclaimed by bush,

dangerous species of wildlife, tsetse fly, and ultimately even appropriated by European

immigrants (Iliffe 1979).

By 1939 there were 6,514 Europeans unofficially in Tanganyika, which included

2,100 British and 2,729 Germans (Iliffe 1979). From the period between 1913 to 1938,

the total acres alienated to European immigrants increased from one million to over two

million (Biermann 1998). Although, this only constituted approximately 1.3% of the

country's total land, rights of occupancy were appropriated for up to 99 years (Iliffe 1979)

and, without surprise, included much of the more productive, fertile lands (Iliffel979,

Mwalyosi 1993b, Neumann 1998). Taken together, this had the effect of pushing local

people to marginal areas and thus resulted in the loss of large areas of important seasonal

pastures for livestock (Mwalyosi 1993b).

Settlement schemes. According to Kjekshus (1977a), tsetse fly eradication

programs, along with centuries of "intertribal" warfare, slave raiding, a number of disease

outbreaks, famine, and colonial pacification, cumulatively depopulated the interior of

Tanganyika and initiated the breakdown of man-controlled ecological systems. Of

particular interest in this discussion are the policy measures associated with combating

the tsetse fly (Glossina spp.), which was responsible for epidemics of sleeping sickness

(trypanosomiasis) across Tanganyika and elsewhere in East Africa at the beginning of the

nineteenth century (Coulson 1982, Kjekshus 1977a).

As part of a committee recommendation in 1914, the colonial government

embarked upon a program of mass evacuation of the population which "led to the

establishment of permanent population concentrations and clearings" (Kjekshus

1977a: 168). Although the German policy was largely focused on bush clearing and

eradication of wildlife, it pursued an aggressive program of establishing a number of

treatment centers whereby the sick could be attended in isolation from the general

population (Kjekshus 1977a). The British continued the initiatives of expanding

resettlement schemes beyond disease control to an even larger scale, ostensibly

concentrating groups of people in order to improve the general internal economy and

services provided to the rural areas. These "concentrations were intended to facilitate

internal development as centres of education, health, water and conversion" as well as

introduce new agriculture methods (Kjekshus 1977a:169).

Although the settlement schemes were initially advocated as a "single purpose

health measure at the time of their inception," their goal later changed "to multi-purpose

developmental units in the terminal days of British Administration" (Kjekshus

1977a: 178). Efforts to move people into sleeping sickness settlements continued until the

1950s, although the full magnitude and number of people concentrated was incomplete.

In general, these settlements were successful in their efforts in controlling

trypanosomiasis and the establishment of a number of social infrastructures, but they did

not fully develop into the anticipated economic centers of achievement and progress, due

largely to the lack of local support, heavy reliance on government assistance, increasing

expenditures, and strong bureaucratic supervision (Mushi 1977).

Land degradation. In terms of land-use, colonial biases perceived Africans as

unskilled farmers that caused the general destruction of the habitat (e.g., soil erosion)

because of their primitive farming practices (Leach and Mearns 1996, Mwalyosi 1993b).

Peasants were looked upon as being uncooperative and unwilling to accept "progress."

Because of their low level of formal education (if any), their traditional beliefs,

"primitive" culture, and "backward" land-use practices, they were assumed to be ignorant

and unable to comprehend their own environmental problems (IIED 1994, IUCN 1963,

Leach and Mearns 1996, Neumann 1998).

Since the turn of the century the resultant colonial policies have been the

reduction of nomadism and greatly increased sedentary land-use practices (Johnson and

Anderson 1988, Longhurst and Heady 1968, Mwalyosi 1993a). For whatever reasonss,

either out of ignorance and/or prejudice, the local farming systems in Tanzania, when

compared to European standards, were viewed in a negative light. Shifting cultivation

was thought of as a wasteful, backward, primitive, and destructive farming system

(Mwalyosi 1993b). Soon sedimentary agriculture became equated with a more advanced

civilization and thus recognized as a significant indicator of progress (Johnson and

Anderson 1988). The expansion of settled cultivation was also championed and

"promoted as a panacea for a multitude of rural ills" (Johnson and Anderson 1988:11).

The response from the government and international aid organizations also "fostered

development policies to encourage pastoralists to settle and reduce their dependence on

livestock by taking up cultivation" (Anderson 1988:241). Subsequently, confinement of

indigenous people to relatively small areas of land with low agricultural potential (where

traditional land-use practices may not have been applicable) has contributed to localized

overpopulation and ultimately led to serious concerns of land degradation ( whether

scientifically substantiated or not) as well as human impoverishment (Mwalyosi 1993b).

Because of their restricted range and confinement in some cases to defined boundaries

(Johnson and Anderson 1988, Kiss 1990), local people soon adopted a "number of

desperate survival strategies" (Ahmed 1988:133) such as shortened fallow periods

(Mwalyosi 1993b), the illegal clearing of forested lands for production of charcoal

(Ahmed 1988) and building supplies, and the eventual overstocking of livestock beyond

the capacity of the land (partly as a result of improved veterinary services and the

addition of water sources) (Carr 1964, Johnson and Anderson 1988). These activities

further exacerbated the problem of land degradation. The threat of encroachment upon

idle fallow lands persuaded perhaps even the most reluctant farmer to continuously

cultivate their plot of land or risk losing it (Schoepf 1983). Furthermore, the penetration

of western capitalism, in the name of "progress," provided powerful economic incentives

for farmers to abandon their subsistence system in favor of anticipated long-term profits

and immediate momentary gains (Johnson 1988, Warren 1992).

Wildlife. There is now increasing evidence that the superabundant wildlife

populations described to exist in Africa around 1900 were not in fact representative of the

long-term norm nor the wildlife paradise generally perceived (Harris and Sullivan 1980,

Kjekshus 1977a). In fact, historical accounts suggest that wildlife populations were

considerably lower prior to 1890s (Kjekshus 1977a). Moreover, the ecological processes

that prevailed were part of a highly dynamic system of ecological changes influenced by

human occupancy and land-use practices (Kjekshus 1977a). Adaptive activities such as

burning, dispersed settlement patterns, traditional agricultural methods and hunting

practices, livestock husbandry, diseases, tsetse fly, and range management systems,

dramatically influenced wildlife populations and their distribution (Harris and Sullivan


Indirect conservation efforts were the mode by which wildlife was conserved.

Wildlife was approached with little direct management effort because of its wide spread

abundance and the belief that management was antithetical to wilderness (IUCN 1963).

Commonly, illicit and not uncommonly explicit, "management" was synonymous with

the reduction or elimination of wild animals, especially outside designated protected

areas and where they presumably posed a threat to surrounding communities (IUCN

1963, Neumann 1998). Outside these areas, wildlife was condemned and seen as an

obstacle to future development (IUCN 1963) and in potential conflict with economic

activities in the area (Marks 1994). As such, the destruction of game was deemed

justified to protect domestic crops, human life, and personal property.

The early colonial years of Tanganyika were marked by massive campaigns

aimed at controlling and ultimately eliminating the tsetse fly (Glossina spp.) (Iliffe 1979,

IUCN 1963). In addition to hunting, other methods to combat the tsetse fly included,

abandoning the infested land, grass burning, establishment of flight barrier zones, and

selective destruction of vegetation (Iliffe 1979). Since game species were known

repositories of trypanosomes of the tsetse fly, which also infected livestock, large herds

of wildlife were destroyed (Carr 1964, IUCN 1963). Elsewhere, the magnitude of one

such campaign is depicted in an example from South Africa's Umfolozi Game Reserve,

wherein 26,162 animals were killed from May 29 -November 30, 1929 (Pringle 1982).

The loss of a "mere" hundred or thousand wild animals was no cause for alarm since their

inherent reproductive nature would replenish the numbers (IUCN 1963).

For the most part, game was viewed by Westerners in strict sporting terms, meant

for a leisurely past time of fulfilled enjoyment and pleasure (Prins 1993). But black

Africans held a different view of wildlife (Kiss 1990). To them, wildlife provided food

(Carr 1964, Kiss 1990, Neumann 1998) clothing, (Longhurst and Heady 1968), and was

intimately a part of their traditional culture (IIED 1994, Kiss 1990). They also, however,

were aware of wildlife threats because of crop raiding and disease transmission (e.g.,

rinderpest and trypanosomiasis) (Mwalyosi 1993b).

Although wildlife conservation in Tanganyika dates back to the German

administration, colonial laws that regulated hunting and trade were rarely enforced

(TWPF 1998). But amidst political pressures from international conservation

organizations over the marked declined of a number of game species, more attention

increasingly focused on their preservation (Kiss 1990). Gradually, direct conservation

efforts emerged whereby protected areas, namely game controlled or game management

areas, game reserves, national parks, and conservation areas were created and the

regulation of hunting, and poaching was actively pursued (Neumann 1998).

Protected areas. Formal exclusionary game reserve laws were first introduced in

Tanganyika in May 1891 by German colonial administrators (TWPF 1998). These early

attempts of "protection" were aimed at controlling wildlife and legislating a set of

regulations that prohibited or strictly limited hunting, burning, grazing, and African

settlement and cultivation in a number of designated reserves (Neumann 1998). Since

their inception, these efforts have been surrounded by controversy (Harris and Sullivan

1980), local resistance, and lack of administrative or financial support. In essence, many

of these protected areas existed in law books only, and were commonly referred to as

"paper parks" (Brandon et al. 1998). Defined by the World Conservation Monitoring

Center (WCMC) (2000) as "an area of land and or sea especially dedicated to the

protection and maintenance of biological diversity and of natural and associated cultural

resources, and managed through legal or other effective means," some protected areas

were established after they were cleared of human occupancy in order to combat sleeping

sickness (Grzimek 1962) or overlapped with other government agendas (e.g.,

villigazation, ujamaa, etc.) that also resulted in depopulating specific areas (Neumann

1998). As a result, thousands of local people were permanently displaced (Neumann

1998). Other areas were chosen because of special scenery, an important dry or wet

season grazing area (Russell 1968), barren conditions with insufficient water supplies,

relatively abundant game populations, or the desire to protect declining species (Kjekshus

1977a). Still other areas were created out of "lands with [a] history of occupancy and

use" by "indigenous" people (Neumann 1998:4). Rarely were these areas established on

"sound scientific information on the nature of species and the ecosystem as a whole"

(Mugabe 1998: 12). It was generally assumed that the areas set aside for protection were

a small inconvenience in light of the future social, aesthetic, cultural, and economic

advantages to be bestowed upon the country (IUCN 1963). Furthermore, the

conservation of wildlife and nature was considered a cultured interest and a sign of a

highly advanced civilization (IUCN 1963).

The stated purpose for these reserved areas was to protect and prevent the

extinction of declining wildlife species, although their protection was often championed

by the elite hunting enthusiast for providing a reservoir of abundant game (IUCN 1963,

Neumann 1998, Pringle 1982). Despite being a low priority within the colonial

administration, and usually competing with other government sectors and priorities (e.g.,

agriculture, veterinary, tsetse, and etc.), wildlife preservation flourished within the British

administration in Tanganyika, whereby the game reserve network was expanded

throughout the territory (Neumann 1998, Olindo and Mbaelele 1994).

Local resistance. Throughout history, most colonial powers have experimented

with tactics to engage [capture] the "participation" of the peasant population in various

development schemes that included the establishment and protection of parks and

protected areas. However, peasant populations have generally eluded government

authorities, both locally and internationally, implicitly and explicitly, by employing a

number of "weapons" [tactics] used to deceive, evade, and even appear to be in

compliance with authorities that sought their assistance (Scott 1985). For the most part,

peasant population strategies have been passive, small in nature, and unorganized, but

they are pursued continuously by a number of individuals in the community (Scott 1985).

Peasant resistance has taken the form of covert tactics such as illegal

encroachment, poaching, setting illegal fires for clearing land, foot dragging, pleading

ignorance of the law, and employing deceptive behavior (Neumann 1998, Scott 1985).

On the other hand, more open, overt behavior may result in public confrontation and lead

to violence. Rarely are these incidents documented with the exception of a major

uprising that threatens the political stability or power structure of the state (Neumann

1998). However, one such example comes from Tanganyika, the Maji Maji rebellion,

where the German attempt to control East Africa was met by armed resistance and a

defiant African population. Although many smaller and more localized acts of defiance

have occurred, the Maji Maji rebellion of 1905, is hailed as the single most effective and

widespread resistance to colonial rule in Africa (Coulson 1982, Temu 1969). In spite of

or in addition to their superior fire-power and shear force, the Germans also adopted a

"scorched-earth" policy, whereby their militia tactics included the destruction of crops,

confiscation of livestock and foodstuff, and the burning of villages and shops (Kjekshus

1977a:145, Shillington 1989:308). The direct impacts of this resistance movement

resulted in an enormous loss of African life (approximately 75,000) as well as the

secondary effects of a three year famine that followed (Coulson 1982, Iliffe 1979).

Man and Nature in Tanzania: Independence Era

When Tanzania gained independence from Britain in 1961, many of the natural

resource policies adopted by the new independent government remained substantially

unchanged from the colonial bureaucratic structure that had dominated the country

(Neumann 1998). Moreover, the general conservation ideology that had accompanied

these policies also remained relatively intact (Neumann 1998).

Political Environment

The continuation of population concentration development schemes remained a

core idea well into the present independent administration (Kjekshus 1977a).

Immediately preceding and shortly after gaining independence, the Tanzanian

government pursued two alternative models for rural development, namely villagization

and ujamaa (Berry et al. 1982, Coulson 1982). Both of these strategies were attempts to

transform the rural sector by raising their level of production (Coulson 1982), and

standard of living through a framework of grassroot participation (Berry et al. 1982).

These policies, as well as nationalization and decentralization, profoundly influenced the

nature of the land in Tanzania.

Villagization. The villagization settlement scheme, initiated in the early 1960s,

was a "mechanized and capital intensive resettlement program aimed at new levels of

production" (Berry et al. 1982:75). The government provided the new sites with a

number of social services that included schools, health services, housing, water supplies,

and emergency food provisions (Hyden 1980), as well as credit for equipment purchases

(Berry et al. 1982, Coulson 1982).

Ujamaa. Coinciding in some areas with villagization, was the establishment of

ujamaa villages. By 1966 the villagization policy was abandoned in favor of the

alternative ujamaa policy of rural development (Coulson 1982, Makere 1971). But unlike

villagization, the ujamaa "familyhood" approach was "conceived as part of a radical

political transformation" that used existing technologies (Hyden 1980:104), and was

labor-intensive rather than capital intensive (Mushi 1977). This concept was rooted in

the tradition of African societies' concern for one another and formerly used as a guiding

philosophy in traditional African societies before the colonial era (Berry et al. 1982). As

described by Coulson (1982:239), these villages would involve "a small group of

politically committed farmers who worked together on a communal farm, using their

savings to purchase equipment that would benefit the group." It was anticipated that the

policy ofujamaa would "lead to many economic and social benefits including the

complete eradication of all forms of exploitation and the attainment of full socio-

economic and political equality" (Makere 1971:22). These villages, however, also

received substantial governmental support in terms of social services, capital investment,

and food provisions (Coulson 1982).

Compulsory villagization. Directly on the heels ofujamaa was another attempt

of villagization. In 1973, a compulsory villagization policy was enacted, whereby all

Tanzanians in rural areas were ordered to live in villages by the end of 1976 (Mushi

1977). By February 1977, approximately 13 million people (Coulson 1982) were

reported to be living in 7684 villages (Mushi 1977). Although total numbers may be

exaggerated, this was nevertheless the "largest resettlement effort in the history of

Africa" (Hyden 1980:130).

While these efforts can be credited in large part for saving thousands or perhaps

millions of lives in terms of disease and famine, these settlements, as described by

Kjekshus (1977b:282), also caused the "destruction of the ecological balance maintained

under the traditional settlement pattern." Furthermore, these nucleated settlement

patterns increasingly led to overcrowding of people and livestock, increased demands on

natural resources (e.g., timber and fuelwood), and contributed to soil erosion (Berry et al.

1982, Kjekshus 1977a).

Finally, at least two legacies are readily apparent from the settlement schemes

previously described. First, the failure of the Tanzanian government to transform the

rural sector, and second, the failure of the ruling class to capture the peasants (Hyden

1980, 1986).

Nationalization. The colonial government was organized on a hierarchical

structure with administrative management based upon sectoral ministries (e.g., health,

education, agriculture, water and etc.) (Berry et al. 1982). But shortly after independence

in 1961, the majority of the government offices and businesses were Africanized and

Nationalized composed and largely operated by black Africans and the state. The call

for nationalization came shortly after independence but vehemently pursued after the

Arusha Declaration in 1967 (Coulson 1982). The guidelines presented in the Arusha

Declaration were hailed as a blueprint from which President Nyerere had hoped to guide

his country's development (Hyden 1979,1980) based upon "communal living, rural

development, and self-reliance" (Berry et al. 1982:11). This philosophy was manifested

in the immediate nationalization of commercial banks, grain milling companies, import-

export houses, insurance businesses, oil refineries, sisal industry, co-operative unions,

transportation services, farms, and manufacturing companies (Berry et al. 1982, Coulson

1982, Hyden 1980). In some instances this meant that the state would have 100% of the

assets, while in other cases the government asked only for majority control or a

controlling interest (Coulson 1982). As described by Coulson (1982:180), "in less than

ten years from the Arusha Declaration, the state had taken a controlling interest in

virtually all productive institutions that could easily be nationalized."

Decentralization. The traditional hierarchical structure of the government, in

which the administration came from the top downward, was ultimately poorly suited for

the type of development that President Nyerere envisioned following the Arusha

Declaration in 1967 (Berry et al. 1982). Therefore in 1972, decentralization was

officially adopted as a policy by the government (Mushi 1977, Kleemeier 1981). In

theory this meant the end of local or central government, which was subsequently

replaced by a branch of the central civil service to administer the region and district

(Coulson 1980, Hyden 1980). The decentralization policy's main tenet was that planning

should start at the village level (Berry et al. 1982) where the "objective was to lessen the

burden on the central ministries in the execution of routine work by having field offices

play a larger role in local development projects" (Kleemeier 1981:64). This objective

was to be accomplished by the transfer of authority and responsibility to the regional and

district administrations (Kleemeier 1981). Decentralization, however, did not refer to the

decentralization of power but the physical transfer of staff (Coulson 1982). In this

regard, Coulson (1982) refers to decentralization as "centralization" whereas Hyden

(1980) identifies it as "deconcentration."

In summary, the overall policy environment during the colonial and post-colonial

eras, either directly or indirectly, intentionally or otherwise, and often linked to other

developmental motives and policies (Neumann 1998), contributed to the subsequent

abandonment of large tracts of previously cultivated and settled lands. Where some of

these lands were not allocated to the state or villages for small-scale production, the result

was the reclamation of bush and the eventual invasion of tsetse fly and wildlife (Coulson

1982, life 1979).

Current Nature of the Land

Land degradation. Today environmental degradation in Tanzania is "partly the

consequence of national policies [that have] divorced local people from the

responsibilities for conservation ..." (Mwalyosi 1993b:14). This has in turn created a

negatively reinforced attitude that has, in part, discouraged the pursuit of sound

conservation ethics and practices among indigenous people (Mwalyosi 1993b). Local

people continue to function in a traditional farming and livestock system that no longer

appears ecologically applicable or workable, based upon either present advances in

technology and medicine, or a political, economic, and social contextual setting that is

rapidly evolving (Parker 1969). For the subsistence, resource-poor farmer or pastoralist

there are very few incentives or compensating alternatives available for him to change a

system that has literally kept him alive (Johnson and Anderson 1988, Longhurst and

Heady 1968).

However, there are still situations where some forms of migratory pastrolism are

ecologically suited to the resource limitations of East Africa (Bennett 1993). These areas

may still provide a maximum yield with minimum resource degradation but only for a

modest number of people and for a limited amount of time (Bennett 1993); that is, until

such time as climatic factors (e.g., global warming, ozone effect, acid rain,

desertification, etc.) overwhelm the situation.

Inevitably the whole environment of the smallholder farmers in East Africa has

changed and in some cases collapsed under the combined disruptive pressures of a

modernizing society (Johnson 1988). Throughout the modernizing world we continue to

witness the exile of indigenous people, forced into a modernized world which they are ill-

equipped or prepared to accept, all in the name of progress and development (Carr 1964).

Wildlife. There is mounting pressure on wildlife that increasingly threatens its

survival, such as poaching, habitat destruction through the conversion of land to other

land-uses (agriculture schemes and etc.), increasing human population, illegal fires,

grazing by domestic stock, disruption of seasonal migration routes, fencing, and etc.

(WCMC 2000). It has been estimated that over half of the original wildlife habitat in

Africa has already been lost to extractive logging, charcoal burning, conversion to

agricultural use, livestock grazing, and other land-uses (Kiss 1990).

Today, the views held by a majority of Africans towards wildlife may be

described as resentful and antagonistic at best (Davis 1968). In their eyes wildlife is seen

as the "government's cattle" to be protected at all costs, even to the detriment of the rural

people (Western 1997). For the African farmer, his management objectives have been

avoidance, control, and sometimes eradication of wildlife species that threaten his crops

(Carr 1964), property, and personal safety (Mwalyosi 1993b).

Appeals based solely on the aesthetic, recreational, or scientific value of wildlife

have fallen short of offering complete protection and providing for a secure future for

rural communities (IUCN 1963). A struggle between the welfare of wildlife and a

vanishing wilderness against the rights and needs of an emerging African population

(Carr 1964) has persisted throughout the course of time and will continue to play an

increasing role in future management efforts. New policy and management philosophies

that seek to reduce these conflicts and provide for a secure future for wildlife and people

must be found.

Protected areas. Today, the present framework of protected areas in Tanzania

arose from a number of forest reserves, namely the sanctuaries or former German settler

estates that were placed under protection by the colonial powers, and subsequently

expanded to other areas and continued by the independent government (Neumann 1998,

Olindo and Mbaelele 1994, TWFP 1998).

Because protected areas are artificially, human-imposed boundaries (Russell

1968) on otherwise wild expanses of earth, they require tremendous expenditures simply

to maintain within a tropical setting (L.D. Harris, pers. com.). The difficulties of

safeguarding protected areas impose a large burden on emerging countries that are

continuing to struggle for economic survival (TWPF 1998). Large expenditures are

required for their upkeep, especially in light of the tremendous competing budgetary

constraints faced in most developing countries, such as Tanzania (TWPF 1998). Once

hailed as a small price to pay for international prestige and conservation commitment

(IUCN 1963), protected areas continue to be managed as a national and global asset, but

yet impose undue hardship (direct and indirect) on the local people (e.g., anti-poaching

programs, roads, camps, fire control, restrictive use of natural resources, and etc.)

(Longhurst and Heady 1968, Mwalyosi 1993a).

Protected areas are coming under increasing pressures to meet the growing

demands to provide for the long-term security of an ever-increasing and demanding

human population (Olindo and Mbaelele 1994). They are under insurmountable

pressures to provide fuel, food, timber, and economic returns for the local people. The

government has fallen short or failed to provide sufficient socio-economic benefits

(Coulson 1982) or incentives for those participating in protected area management, or

those directly affected by the establishment, and maintenance of these areas (Olindo and

Mbaelele 1994). In addition, officials in various branches of government, local, regional,

and national have come under increased pressure to convert land set-aside for

conservation to be used for short-term land use options, such as large-scale commercial

agriculture, or grazing areas (WCMC 2000).

International interests have always influenced and been a strong advocate for the

protected area approach in conserving the natural fauna in Africa (IUCN 1963, Neumann

1998). Under national and international pressures, protected areas are still hailed by

some as vital approaches to maintaining in perpetuity a representative sample of the

world's biological, physical, and cultural wealth (Attwell 2000). To a certain point this

objective has met some success in the sense that it has formed a partial barrier (weak or

strong) against subsequent development in the area (IUCN 1963, Olindo and Mbaelele

1994). However, today protected areas have come under considerable scrutiny from a

number of activists, social scientists, local peasants, and politicians questioning the

relevance of protected areas to rural communities and thus their livelihood (Neumann

1998). As a result, policy makers increasingly recognize that a more flexible, multi-

faceted, and integrated approach to managing strict natural areas is needed.

Consequently, a series of protected area classifications with varying degrees of

regulations and management regimes specifically pertaining to human occupation, and

use of the natural environment have been designated (Schoepf 1983). In an early attempt

to bring a degree of uniformity into the use of various, and often confusing terms applied

to the various land-use classifications throughout the world, the World Conservation

Union (IUCN) in 1978 established ten categories of protected areas based upon specified

management objectives (McNeely et al. 1994). In 1992, at the IV World Congress on

National Parks and Protected Areas, this system was modified and reduced to six

categories: strict nature reserve/wilderness area, national park, natural monument,

habitat/species management area, protected landscape/seascape, and managed resource

protected area (Brandon et al. 1998, WCMC 2000).

Focusing on the results of Tanzania's natural resource efforts, there where only

three National Parks, nine Game Reserves, and one Conservation Area at the time of

independence in 1961 (Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998, TWPF 1998). However, after

independence, the new government significantly increased the number of protected areas

(Neumann 1998, TWPF 1998). Thus, Africanization not only embraced but amplified

ideologies of the colonial era (Neumann 1998). Today the total of protected areas

approximates 28% of Tanzania's land area, which includes 12 National Parks, 31 Game

Reserves, 38 Game Controlled Areas, and one Conservation Area. Several of these are

designated as world heritage sites and/or biosphere reserves (Coe et al. 1999, TWPF

1998, Zacharia 1990). Each category is unique and varies accordingly in its legal,

administrative, and degree of biodiversity protection (Coe et al. 1999, WCMC 2000) as

described under the present IUCN classification system.

Today's African nations feel increasing pressures to evaluate protected areas in

monetary terms. Sadly for biodiversity conservation, many countries are rapidly

approaching a point where humans are "unable to envisage humanity except in terms of

profit, development, exploitation, and planning at every economic level" (IUCN

1963:242), whereby protected areas are used as a "valid strategy for economic

development" (Kjekshus 1977a:79). Until now, biodiversity and renewable natural

resources have fallen victim to these monetary motives (Mugable 1998). This is in large

measure because there are no rules, conventions, or international mechanisms that are

effectively enforced to guarantee the survival of wildlife resources in the lesser developed

countries so long as economic incentives provide the strongest and easiest motive for

their destruction (IUCN 1963).

Local resistance. Today in Tanzania, local community resentment and

antagonistic feelings towards protected areas, and conservation policies continue to

culminate in various forms of local resistance.

Although everyday forms of resistance (Scott 1985:32) persist and may include

illegal hunting and natural resource extractions, grazing trespass, unauthorized burning,

and encroachment (Neumann 1998, Scott 1995), some of these "weapons" have

nevertheless remained consistent and unchanged. However, other changes in part, reflect

a growing grassroot movement with local and often global challenges surrounding the

establishment and administration of protected areas in Tanzania (Neumann 1998). From

ordinary weapons of relatively powerless groups to a formal process of due process

through the judicial system, years of unorganized defiant behavior have incrementally

moved towards an organized progress of peasant political mobility (Scott 1995).

But still, efforts to "capture" (engage) the peasant population in natural resource

management activities continues unabated. Within recent years these efforts have

increasingly involved community-based conservation initiatives that attempt to forestall

local opposition to conservation (Neumann 1998, Western and Wright 1994). Some of

these initiatives include the provision of social services, alternative employment

opportunities or other income generating schemes, benefit sharing opportunities, and

alternative resource management methods. These "alternatives" are aimed at providing

incentives (directly or indirectly) to the local communities for adhering to biodiversity

conservation objectives (IIED 1994).


Tanzania is a large and exceptionally diverse country, encompassing about

942,800 km2 (Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998), thus making it the largest country in Eastern

Africa (Foster 1994) (Figure 2). Located just south of the equator, it borders Kenya and

Uganda on the north and northeast, respectively; Zaire, Rwanda, and Burundi on the

west; and Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique on the south (Foster 1994, Nyenzi 1998).

Tanzania's population of approximately 30 million people is growing at an annual

rate of 2.8% (Nyenzi 1998, TWPF 1998). Although 80-85% of the population (Nyenzi

1998) lives in rural areas, the urban population of 4.5 million is growing at a rate of 7-8%

per year (PERM 1995) and dominates most of the news and political decisions. Native

Africans account for 99% of Tanzania's population with the remainder 1% composed of

Asia, Arab, and European peoples (Uiowa 1999). Kiswahili and English are the official

languages of the country, although there are several regional languages among

Tanzania's 120 "tribes" (Nyenzi 1998). Religious freedom is commonplace in Tanzania.

Muslims and Hindus make up 33%, while Christians comprise 33%, and those who

adhere to traditional African beliefs 34% (Uiowa 1999).

Agriculture employs over 80% of the adult work force (PERM 1995), accounts

for about 75% of the country's foreign exchange earnings (Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998,






1 Pemba Island Game.
2 Zanzibar Island 'Reserve'.
3 Mafia Island Lake.

Figure 2. Map of Tanzania

Adapted from: Crystal, D. editor. 1993. Cambridge FactFinder, updated edition. Pages
195-358 in Human geography (the Map of Tanzania, page 325). Cambridge University
Press, New York.

PERM 1995), and 50% of the country's Gross Domestic Product (Biermann 1998, Kaiza-

Boshe et al. 1998). Agriculture, therefore, dominates and stereotypes the economy of

country as a whole. It is a country of smallholder farmers who average less than two

hectares of land, and are characterized by low productivity, and per capital income.

Because of the caprice of climate, foreign exchange, and availability of international

goods and supplies, most people can make only marginal moves away from subsistence

agricultural levels and towards a profit-oriented farming system. Although commercial

agriculture is the objective of the economic sector (Biermann 1998, Mugabe 1998), the

critical importance of raw natural resources to people's livelihood can not be

underestimated (PERM 1995).

Tanzania's biological diversity (biodiversity) is one of the country's greatest

assets (Coe et al. 1999, Mwalyosi 1993a, TWPF 1998) remaining to be tapped in a

sustainable and profitable mode (Mwalyosi 1993b). One estimate suggests that at least

25% of the world's global diversity occurs in Tanzania (in terms of species, ecosystem,

and genetic variety) (Mugabe 1998). The diversity of habitats, topographical features,

plants, and animals found in Tanzania make the country one of the richest areas on earth

in terms of natural resource endowment and spectacular scenery (Mwalyosi 1993a,

TWPF 1998): the Great Rift Valley, a vast fault-line through the interior of Tanzania and

the precursor to several ecological wonders, such as the Ngorongoro Crater, the largest

unbroken caldera in the world; Lake Tanganyika, the world's second deepest lake (Foster

1994, Nyenzi 1998); the Central Plateau (1200 m above sea level), a huge expanse of

savannah and sparse woodland and home to the Serengeti, arguably the most photogenic

and best known wildlife area in the world (Foster 1994). On the northern Tanzania-

Kenya border, rises the ice-capped mountains of Mount Kilimanjaro (19,340 ft- 5895

m), the tallest freestanding mountain in the world is sharply juxtaposed to a wondrous

marine and coral reef system only 161 km to the east (Nyenzi 1998). This, in turn, is

dotted by the culturally renowned islands of Zanzibar, Mafia, and Pemba.

In terms of wildlife, Tanzania is the fourth most diverse country in Africa for

amphibians, reptiles (Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998, McNeely et al. 1990), and swallowtail

butterflies (McNeely et al. 1990). It ranks third for birds (Kaiza-Boshe et al. 1998) and

mammals (McNeely et al. 1990) and second most diverse for plants (Kaiza-Boshe et al.

1998, PERM 1995). This rich fauna and flora diversity is supported by an equally rich

mosaic of habitats that is a reflection of its climatic, topographic, and altitudinal

variations (Coe et al. 1999, Mwalyosi 1993a). Although there are seasonal variations in

temperatures and rainfall throughout the region, on the whole, the country's hottest

months are from October to February, and the long rainy season is from mid-March to

late May with short rains occurring between October and December (Nyenzi 1998,

TWPF 1998).

Although much of the country is semi-arid, characterized by low rainfall and

dominated by either savannah grassland, Acacia woodland, or Comiphora-Acacia scrub,

there are also wetlands, flood plains, coastal mangrove forests, coral gardens, tropical

forests, and montane belts (Coulson 1982, Mwalyosi 1993a, TWPF 1998). Moreover,

there are several world-renowned areas of significant natural, cultural, and economic

importance, which include World Heritage sites such as Mt. Kilimanjaro, Selous Game

Reserve, Serengeti National Park, and Ngorongoro Crater (Coulson 1982, Kaiza-Boshe

et al. 1998, TWPF 1998), as well as a number of Africa's great lakes (Victoria,

Tanganyika, and Nyasa) (Coulson 1982, Mwalyosi 1993a, TWPF 1998), rivers (Rufiji,

Pangani, Ruaha, and Ruvuma) (Berry et al. 1982, Coulson 1982), and soda lakes (Natron,

Eyasi, Blangida, and Manyara) (Mwalyosi 1993a, TWPF 1998).

Study Areas

Because Tanzania has a well-documented history of conservation programming

activities, several of its National Parks and protected areas provide an excellent

opportunity for reviewing the legacy of colonial natural resource policies, changing

paradigms, human-wildlife conflicts, human rights concerns, and conservation

management approaches. This is especially important now after a century of

experimentation with conservation approaches in the face of unrelenting human

population growth.

For these discussions, I present three case studies: Udzungwa National Park

(UNP), Mikumi National Park (MNP), and Mkomazi Game Reserve (MGR). These three

study areas were chosen because they provide fairly distinct conservation management

approaches for comparison and contrast. Despite a common colonial legacy and similar

political environments, these three protected areas have subsequently pursued different

conservation management approaches. Their management decisions have been greatly

influenced by local park managerial attitudes and philosophies as well as varying degrees

of technical and financial support (e.g., local government, international NGOs, and

private donations). Furthermore, the ecological attributes, community relations, and

historical context have come to distinctly shape these three protected areas' conservation

approaches, management challenges, and natural resource policies.

Udzungwa National Park

Udzungwa National Park (UNP) is located in the Iringa and Morogoro Regions of

South Central Tanzania (Figure 3). Bordered on the north by the Ruaha River, on the

east by the Selous Game Reserve, on the south by the TAZARA (Great Uhuru) railway,

and on the west by the West Kilombero Scarp Forest Reserve (Hoyle 1997, Johannes


The total area of UNP is 1900 km2, gazetted (established) in 1992 from the

Mwanihana, Iwonde, and parts of Matundu, Nyanganje and West Kilombero Scarp Forest

Reserves (originally established in 1958), making it Tanzania's twelfth national park and

sixth largest (Johannes 1996). UNP forms part of the chain of mountains known as the

"Eastern Arc" mountains of East Africa (TANAPA n.d.). These mountain ranges include

Usambara, North and South Pare, Uluguru, Mahenge, Rubeho, Nguu, Malundwe, Nguru,

Ukaguru, and Udzungwa in Tanzania (Johannes 1996, Mwalyosi 1993a), and Taita in

Kenya (Johannes 1996). These mountain ranges stretch across eastern Tanzania from the

Kenya border to Malawi and are among the richest biodiversity hotspots in the world

with exceptionally high fauna and flora species richness and endemism (Myers et al.

2000, TWPF 1998). The UNP constitutes the greatest altitidunal range of forests in East

Africa (TANAPA n.d.). The eastern escarpment is the only place in East Africa with a

relatively unbroken forest cover, with a variety of forest types with altitudinal ranges

from 250 m above sea level to 2000 m. Estimated annual rainfall is 500-2500 mm

(Hoyle 1997, Johannes 1996).




Figure 3. Map of Udzungwa National Park

Source: Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA), n.d. Brochure for Udzungwa National
Park. Arusha, Tanzania.

Udzungwa National Park is an exceptionally rich forest. It provides habitat for

many rare and endemic flora and fauna species, a very diverse large mammal community,

the richest forest bird habitat in Tanzania, and spectacular mountain scenery with

rainforest, wooded grasslands, rock faces, rivers, and waterfalls (TANAPA n.d.).

Mikumi National Park

Mikumi National Park (MNP), gazetted in 1964, is the third largest national park

after Ruaha and Serengeti, with an area of 3,230 km2 (TANAPA n.d.). MNP is located in

North Central Tanzania and shares its boundary in the extreme east with the Selous Game

Reserve (Figure 4). Together they form a continuous ecosystem for migrating animals.

The park lies in a horseshoe of towering mountains and forested foothills. To the east

rises the 2743 m massif of the Uluguru ranges; to the southwest are the peaks of the

Lumango mountains, while the Mbesera, Madizini, and Mazunyungu hills sweep around

northward and westward (TANAPA n.d.).

The park headquarters is located 96 km2 from Morogoro town, along the

Tanzania-Zambia Highway (which transverses the park for 50 km2), 288 km2 from Dar es

Salaam, and 80 km2 from UNP (TANAPA n.d.), making it one of Tanzania's most

accessible national parks. The major attraction at MNP is the Mkata flood plain that rises

approximately 548 m above sea level and is an area of high concentration of the plains

variety animals, including four of the "big five" species in Africa elephant, buffalo, lion

and leopard- as well as over 300 species of birds (Foster 1994, TANAPA n.d.).

Figure 4. Map of Mikumi National Park and Selous Game Reserve Ecosystem

Source: Siege, L. editor. 1996. Financial potential of the Selous Game Reserve and its
buffer zones. SCP Discussion Paper No. 21. Selous Conservation Programme. Selous
Game Reserve-Wildlife Division. Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Map of Mikumi National
Park and Selous Game Reserve, cover page.

Mkomazi Game Reserve

The Mkomazi Game Reserve (MGR) is located in Northeast Tanzania and lies

along the Kenya border approximately midway between the Indian Ocean and Mt.

Kilimanjaro (Figure 5). The MGR is bordered on the northwest by the North Pare

Mountains, with the westernmost highest point of the Reserve, Kinondu Hill, reaching an

elevation of 1594 m (Coe et al. 1999, Harris 1972, McWilliam and Packer 1998). The

Umba Steppe, comprising the open plains area of the Reserve, borders the Reserve in the

east with an elevation of 230 m above sea level and rising to 600 m above the plain

(Harris 1972). To the south lies the Umba River and Tsavo (West) National Park in

Kenya to the North, where it forms an integral part of the greater Tsavo ecosystem (Coe

et al. 1999, Mangubuli 1992). The foothills of the North Pare Mountains and the

extensive plains of the Umba Steepe are two main physiographic features of the Reserve

(Harris 1972).

MGR is characterized as semi-arid with an east to west annual rainfall gradient

varying between 35 cm to 65 cm (Harris and Fowler 1975). The vegetation is

categorized into four major types: (1) dry montane forest, (2) bushed and wooded

grassland, (3) seasonally inundated grassland, and (4) bushland (Coe et al. 1999, Harris

1972). Today, bushland accounts for less than 50% of the Reserve (Coe et al. 1999). A

complete description of the physiography and geology of MGR is extensively given

elsewhere (Harris 1972).

The MGR was established in October 1951 and encompasses a total area of

3234.4 km2' with an approximate maximal length of 130 km and maximal width of 41 km

(Harris 1972). Since establishment, however, its borders have been altered at least twice,

Figure 5. Map of Mkomazi Game Reserve

Source: Coe, M.J., N.C. McWilliam, G.N. Stone, and M.J. Parker, editors. 1999.
Mkomazi: the ecology, biodiversity, and conservation of a Tanzania savanna. Royal
Geographical Society (with The Institute of British Geographers), London. Map of
Mkomazi Game Reserve, back cover inset map. (Reprinted with permission of the










J ,

once in 1957 and again in 1966 (Harris 1972, Zacharia 1990). This has resulted in a

reduction of the original 3584 km2 to the present day total area. Under the Wildlife

Conservation Act No. 12 of 1974 and Government Notice No. 275 of 8th November the

MGR (the western part) was administratively reestablished under the decentralization

policy as the MGR, and the Umba Game Reserve (UGR) (the eastern half) (Zacharia

1990). Today, the MGR (2010.3 km2) and UGR (1224.1 km2) lie in the Pare and Lushoto

Districts of the Kilimanjaro and Tanga regional administrative boundaries, respectively

(Mangubuli 1992). Throughout this paper, however, the MGR/UGR will be collectively

referred to as the Mkomazi Game Reserve (MGR) or Reserve unless otherwise stipulated.

Historical overview of MGR. During the last 30 years the administrative

capacity to manage protected areas in Tanzania has declined to a point where the MGR

has suffered considerable biodiversity losses (D. Anstey pers. com., Mangubuli 1992).

This came about as a result of declining social foundations and decision-making capacity

in conservation institutions. The problems of the Reserve have been blamed on

insensitive colonial policies that failed to consider people's needs, rights and the

traditional practices that maintained a reasonable environment before colonial


The political ideology that led to these losses is now being addressed by more

recent administrations, and alternative management steps are underway to relieve the

natural resource base of numerous stressors. During the last few years, the Reserve has

been a focal point for a new ideology. A major report on the Reserve (Homewood et al.

1997) maintains that all can be well if control of the natural resources would be given to

the local village authorities. Without a detailed analysis here, this report appears to

misrepresent and misstate major historical facts of the MGR. As such, this dissertation

suggests extreme caution in basing any critical decisions or advocating new ones on

untested claims, as the effects could be irreversible. Moreover, in the interest of pursuing

equitable future management options, it is imperative that a correct, objective, and

unbiased narrative be told one which considers the historical developments which led to

the gazettement and the current ecological, social, and political challenges.

The following is a historical overview of MGR based upon detailed interviews

with David Anstey and Lawrence Harris, supplemented with other reports and


Ruvu Game Reserve. In 1904, during the German administration, an area of

country along the Ruvu River was set aside as a game reserve and was referred to by the

Germans as Wildreservat Wilhemstal. This area lay along the Ruvu (Pangani) River in

what later became Upare District.

During the Second World War, however, the lack of inadequate supervision, led

to severe degradation of the area because of increased pressures from the Maasai and

their cattle (Mangubuli 1992). Eventually, the Ruvu Game Reserve lost its ecological

value as a nature reserve and was subsequently degazetted (abolished) in 1950 (Anderson

1967, Parker 1969).

Ethnic conflict. During the withdrawal of German authority in Tanganyika in

1916, a group of a Maasai clan, resident around Losongoni, engaged in battle with a

group of the WaKwavi clan in the lower Kitwai mbuga. The purpose of this struggle was

to gain additional grazing land (later, this conflict will be at the heart of the current legal

battle over the MGR). As a result of the defeat, the WaKwavi moved from the

Kitwai/Saunyi area towards the Usambara Mountains. In 1926, because of past

connections to this area, this small group of WaKwavi arranged with the Sambaa chief to

take up residence at the foothills of the Northwest Usambara Mountains. This was

roughly the Mnazi/Lelwa area, which lies outside the MGR.

During the 1940s and 1950s, there was movement by the Maasai from Maasailand

into the lowlands on the western side of the Upare and Usambara Districts. Their influx

raised concerns among the respective African District Councils (ADC) in this area. They

were concerned that the Maasai would take grazing land needed for WaPare and

Wasambaa who were encouraged to bring their livestock down from the overgrazed hill

in the mountains to the lowlands for grazing. In response, the District Commissioners of

Upare and Usambara issued administrative orders for the Maasai to remain west of the

Tanga-Moshi railway line.

Gazettement of MGR. About 1949, after two years of discussion with the ADC

and village chiefs, it was agreed that the MGR would be established as a "quid pro quo"

for the degazettement (abolishment) of the Ruvu Game Reserve (Harris 1972,

Kabigumila 1992). The proposed area was uninhabited and offered a good example of a

semi-arid ecosystem (Anstey 1956). The Kisiwani village had no direct contact with the

proposed reserve boundary as it was composed of thick bush. A sisal estate in this area

also provided a buffer zone between the village and the reserve. This area offered good

prospects for a biodiversity reserve without conflicting with other national development


Observations from 1880 to the early 1950s suggest that wildlife was well

distributed in the area (Anstey 1956, Harris 1972). Willoughby (1889) referred to it as

offering "excellent and varied sport." A 1932 annual report by the Tanganyika Game and

Tsetse Division indicated that the Pare (i.e., Ruvu) Reserve (immediately south of the

present MGR) was listed as "one of the four most valuable." This was followed by

another report in 1934, that stated "with closer protection ... the Same District can

become one of the most attractive game areas in the territory", later it was described in

1950 as carrying "large concentrations of game" (Tanganyika Game and Tsetse Division


In an effort to verify that the proposed area for the game reserve was uninhabited,

tax collection records from the ADC were extensively checked. Finally after two years

of negotiations, the ADC and the two District Commissioners, Mr. Thorne and Mr.

Smithyman, certified that according to the tax records, there were no taxpayers of their

districts living in the proposed area. Both of the District Commissioners were agreeable

for the land to be made into a game reserve. The proposal was approved, and the MGR

was included in the Flora and Fauna Conservation Ordinance published in 1951.

David Anstey, the Reserve's first Game Ranger, undertook extensive safaris in

the game reserve between 1952-55 to survey the area for any occupants and to verify the

ADC tax statements. He found that the pastoralists based near Lake Jipe and Toloha at

the foot of the North Pare Mountains (outside the Reserve) were concerned about Maasai

herders encroaching into their grazing areas. At Maji Kununua Mountain in the Central

Pare Mountains, he encountered two families. They requested David Anstey's assistance

in moving to an area outside of the reserve to the North Pare Mountains so that they

could have access to schools and medical clinics. In the Tussa Mountains there was

evidence of two or three huts in which, according to his Kambaa guide, two men had

lived after being expelled from their village because of antisocial activities. But before

the reserve was gazetted, these men had left the area and returned to their village. In the

Usambara District area of the Reserve there were no permanent residents. However,

there was a small group of WaKwavi living at a village on the northern side of the

Usambara Mountains. During the rainy season they utilized the Katamboi waterhole in

Kenya and grazed back to the Umba River during the dry season (Mangubuli 1992).

Unfortunately, the original government records referring to this group of WaKwavi have

not been located, but references have been made showing there were 69 people (including

men, women and children) and about 3000 head of cattle. David Anstey agreed to let the

WaKwavi continue their grazing pattern, since they had been there before the Reserve

was established. At this time the presence of the WaKwavi and their grazing practices

did not interfere with or cause damage to the wildlife population or the flora (Kabigumila

1992). With further investigation of the area, David Anstey found a group of detribalized

individuals in an area called Kalemawi (downstream towards Gonja Maore), just inside

the Reserve boundary. They were engaged in salt production and were also herders for

WaPare cattle owners. Consequently, in 1957 the government excised this area,

approximately 89 square miles, from the reserve to provide these people with a sufficient

area outside the Reserve for salt production and grazing (Harris 1972).

Influx of migrants. In the 1950s a small group of Maasai with significant

livestock herds emigrated from Maasailand to the Upare District. This created tension

with the local people currently in the area. The Maasai moved into the Lake Jipe area,

where there had been only limited Maasai cattle. From there they continued to move

along the Kenya-Tanzania border (on the Kenya side) towards the Katamboi waterhole

which was then being used in the rainy season by the WaKwavi. The WaKwavi sent

news to the administration that influx of Maasai threatened their grazing.

The Usambara lowland was also threatened with overgrazing by the Lsongoni

Maasai herds in the 1950s and 1960s. These Maasai originated in the Ruvu area and had

migrated via Kilometa-Upare to Ngulu Gap-Upare to Toloha-Upare and subsequently to

the WaKwavi grazing areas near Mnazi. These invasions upset the whole ecological

system of grazing outside the Reserve and ignited a chain reaction of land degradation

that threatened the natural habitat in the Reserve as well. It further threatened the

collapse of the planned utilization of the lowland area by the Wapare and Wasambaa and

their livestock. In response to this threat, Igoma, a section of land fringing the South Pare

Mountains, was excised from the Reserve in 1965 to provide additional land for the

Kisiwaini agriculturists. At the same time a small section of land in the Pangaro Valley

was added as it included an important dry season habitat for wildlife and was near the

Reserve's Dindira watering point (Harris 1972, Mangubuli 1992). In light of past

management challenges, MGR remains an ecologically important protected area in

Tanzania. As such, current management efforts continue to cautiously pursue

conservation objectives within the context of historically (and current) political, and

social complexities.


For my study of the three protected areas in Tanzania, I used a variety of methods,

including archival sources found in Tanzania and the University of Florida Special

Collection Library. In addition, face-to-face, personal interviews (informal, unstructured,

and semi-structured) were conducted with National Park and Game Reserve staff,

Tanzania Wildlife Division, Tanzania National Park (TANAPA) authorities, and two

former Mkomazi Game Reserve employees (David Anstey and Lawrence Harris). Other

methods included on-site observations, semi-structured questionnaire surveys (open and

closed ended), including households, village leaders, a women's group, and park staff

(Udzungwa and Mikumi National Parks only). Also I conducted a thorough review of

Tanzanian government's published and unpublished historical reports, and contemporary


SUA/TU Linkage Project

In 1990 Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro, Tanzania, and

Tuskegee University (TU) in Tuskegee, AL (USA), signed a memorandum of

understanding (MOU) to link and collaborate in teaching, research, and outreach with the

purpose of positioning themselves to take advantage of emerging opportunities for

institutional development (SUA/TU report 1998). This agreement subsequently became

the SUA/TU Linkage Project. The first phase of this project, entitled "Enhancing

Teaching, Research, and Outreach Capabilities of Sokoine University of Agriculture",

was funded by United States Agency for International Development (USAID) at

$2,385,754 for five years (October 1, 1990 to September 30, 1995) (SUA/TU report

1996). In addition, the second phase of this project, entitled "Capacity Building for the

Development of Sustainable Agriculture Through Community-Based Management of

Natural Resources in Tanzania," was also funded by USAID on October 1, 1995, for a

five year period (October 1, 1995 to September 30, 2000) at a total cost of $2,714,943

(SUA/TU report 1996). This project is as a cooperative agreement between TU and

USAID to benefit SUA's efforts in capacity building for outreach in community-based

natural resource management at the village level in Tanzania.

Specifically, the second phase of this project, which is the focus of the following

discussions and research activities, was designed to produce seven "outputs": (1)

improved project management skills at SUA, (2) strengthen land management practices,

(3) improved management of resource use in horticultural production, (4) increased use

of sustainable crop production practices, (5) increased production of poultry, goats and

cattle, 6) increased technical services for community well-being, and (7) improved

community services to increase the use of tractor/animal power in agriculture (SUA/TU

report 1996).

Project Villages

The project activities focused on sustainable agricultural production, management

of natural resources, and environmental conservation. The implementation strategies,

therefore, involved a series of activities (e.g., consultation, baseline surveys, and etc.)

geared towards social and ecological needs, problem discovery, intervention, and impact

assessment (SUA/TU report 1996).

Consultation with USAID (Tanzania) resulted in the selection of three districts to

participate in the SUA/TU Linkage Project, namely Kilosa, Morogoro rural and

Kilombero. The respective district authorities subsequently narrowed the choices of

specific rural communities or target villages to benefit from the project activities and

assistance. As a result, 17 villages were selected throughout the three districts, five each

in Morogoro and Kilombero, and seven in Kilosa district.

Dedicated teams. Implementation of the proposed activities was carried out

through the use of "dedicated teams." These are core teams formed on the basis of

discipline and activity requirement for each of the 17 target villages. One of the teams

implemented a mini-project called, "Promotion of sound coexistence between protected

areas and neighboring rural communities." I participated directly in this mini-project

whose activities focused on two villages, Kisawasawa and Sanje, adjacent to Udzungwa

National Park, and two villages, Maharaka and Msongozi, adjacent to Mikumi National


Other dedicated teams provided assistance to select villages regarding

horticulture, vegetable production, food and cash crop production, poultry and goat

keeping, agriculture inputs and implements, milling machinery, construction of

dispensary building, and dairy farming.

Village-Level Activities

Designated team members from the SUA/TU Linkage Project conducted two

types of initial data collection exercises between January and March, 1996. The first was

entitled, "Baseline Study for the SUA/TU Linkage Project Villages" (SUA/TU report

1996). A standard USAID (Tanzania) questionnaire was used in this exercise to sample

eight villages in the targeted district. Five of these sample villages fell within activities

of the SUA/TU Linkage Project. The questionnaires were comprehensive, covering the

socio-economic aspects of the villages. The second data collection exercise, entitled,

"Village Profiles" was conducted by the project in all of the 17 SUA/TU targeted

villages. This comprehensive study employed participatory rural appraisal techniques to

obtain information on the focus areas of the project, sustainable agriculture, and

management of the natural resources (SUA/TU report 1996). In each village a uniform

format was employed. A multidisciplinary team of SUA, TU, and local village leaders

conducted the study with the following chronology of activities: meeting with village

government, a field appraisal of the village, and separate discussions with groups of

women and men in the respective rural communities. The outcome of these data was a

profile of all collaborating villages and a useful document to gain insight into specific

village-level planning activities.

A one-day workshop and planning seminar was conducted in February and

March, 1996, in an effort to discern needed village-level activities (SUA/TU report

1996). The respective village chairperson, village executive officers, divisional

secretaries, and SUA/TU personnel attended these meetings. During the meetings,

proposed village activities were discussed, critically analyzed, and prioritized. The

output was a five-year program document that elaborated on specific activities or "mini-

projects" and the roles of SUA/TU customers in the Linkage Project.


Household. In an effort to provide more effective assistance to the villages in the

study area (Maharaka, Msongozi, Kisawasawa, and Sanje), a structured, face-to-face

household survey was conducted over a two-week period in August 1997 (Appendix A).

It included both open-ended and fixed or closed-response questions (Bernard 1994).

Through these surveys, respondents were asked questions relating to household

education, employment status, age, family size, conservation attitudes, wildlife

perceptions, park management strategies and suggestions, access to conservation

materials, and experiences with crop and livestock damage from wild animals.

Individual households were randomly selected from a list of residents prepared by

the village secretary. A total of 178 households in the four villages were randomly

selected for the questionnaire survey. Whenever possible, the head of the household was

interviewed with supplemental information provided by other household members who

were also present. The response time of respondents and the location of the households

dictated the total number of surveys administered. As a result, only subvillages located

close to the National Park headquarters and/or boundary were included in the field

survey. Enumerators, employed by the SUA/TU Linkage Project, were well-versed in

English and the local language, they administered the survey in Kiswahili. It is possible,

however, that because local people may have viewed the interviewers as being affiliated

with USAID or the National Park, they did not freely express their opinions. Although it

is difficult to evaluate the response bias, I believe the results accurately reflect local

opinion because of the nature of the responses.

In our effort to ensure the effective delivery of the survey instrument, a pre-test

was conducted in a nearby village (Dodoma) several weeks prior to the administration of

the actual survey. These results were then used to improve the survey, in terms of clarity,

deletion, or addition of specific questions, as well as to gauge the approximate time of

administration, and the comprehension level of the respondents to the questions.

The results of these surveys were presented to the village assembly in the

following year and were subsequently used to reprioritize project activities for the local

villages. The results were also presented to both UNP and MNP.

Village leader survey. Face-to-face structured questionnaire surveys were

administered to an assembled body of individuals (focus group) that represented the

village leaders or village government for each of the four respective villages, Maharaka,

Msongozi, Kisawasawa, and Sanje (Appendix B). The questionnaire was read to an open

forum of participants and administered by members of the dedicated team in Kiswahili.

The focus groups were asked to respond to a series of open and closed-end questions and

to rank order some of their responses. The purpose of this type of survey was to

stimulate open discussions among village leaders about their perception of major

concerns of their respective constituents.

The results of these surveys were ultimately used to assist in prioritizing village

concerns and provide appropriate SUA/TU Linkage Project guidance. In areas outside

the scope of our dedicated teams, village concerns were forwarded to members of the

appropriate SUA/TU dedicated team.

Park staff survey. Questionnaires were distributed to a number of Park Staff

employees at UNP and MNP: park warden, community conservation warden, ecologist,

conservation education and law enforcement officers (Appendix C). Followed by a brief

overview of each of the questions, ample time was allowed for the respondents to

individually complete the survey form. The survey instrument was self-administered

whereby responses were either ranked or open-ended. The completion of the survey by

the park staff presented an excellent opportunity for the Linkage team to gain feedback

on activities that could assist them with their community outreach programs and

management objectives.

Sanje women's group. Since women's issues were assumed to differ from

men's, special efforts were made to interview women separately, in each village.

However, only Kisawasawa and Sanje had organized women's groups. The Sanje

women's group was able to organize a forum for discussion; however, scheduling

logistics precluded the participation of the Kisawasawa women's group. Questionnaire

surveys used for the village leaders were also used to collect information for this focus

group. These discussions led to a series of concerns and requests for assistance from the

SUA/TU Linkage Project and/or the National Park.

Study Tour

Based upon the previous year's request from the villages, a visit to MNP and

UNP was organized in August 1998. The villages requested to visit the National Park in

their area for the purpose of viewing wildlife, establishing a dialogue with park officials,

and obtaining educational information on the National Park. The SUA/TU Linkage

Project provided transportation, lunch, and snacks for all participants.

During a preliminary visit to each of the four villages and to both National Parks,

the Linkage team members established the logistics of the study tours: number of

participants, departure/return times, and a tentative program of activities. Furthermore,

each village leader was asked to select an equal number of men and women, as well as a

wide array of age groups for participation in the study tours of the National Park.


Since the emergence of formalized conservation throughout the world, protected

areas have rapidly expanded. However, a variety of conservation management

approaches have been initiated that have attempted to answer the challenges posed by the

increasing demands placed on natural resources in protected areas. Some of these

approaches have met with success, others failure, and still others continue to evolve and

build upon lessons learned from previous approaches. These approaches have typically

ranged from the strict protectionist or classical approach of top-down management, to a

multitude of innovative, multidisciplinary, site-specific, and bottom-up, participatory


This chapter presents the results of a case study that reviews a gradient of

conservation management strategies for Udzungwa (UNP) and Mikumi National Parks

(MNP), and Mkomazi Game Reserve (MGR). The framework for this approach

identifies and briefly reviews conservation management strategies that have subsequently

been abandoned and others that are currently being implemented.

For MGR, several published and unpublished government reports, and a review of

the University of Florida special collection archives were used to document past activities

and management recommendations. For the three protected areas, current management

options were obtained from various published and unpublished reports, articles,

interviews, and the world wide web.

Udzungwa and Mikumi National Parks

Unlike MGR, supportive financial resources, administrative flexibility and local

community relations have made it possible for UNP and MNP to employ a number of

innovative, site-specific management strategies that address community needs as well as

natural resource management.

Contemporary Conservation Management Approaches

Community Conservation Service. At a seminar held in 1985 at Serengeti

National Park, participants expressed the need to involve local people in conservation

activities (Chengullah 1998, Neumann 1998). Following the recommendations of the

seminar, Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) officially established a unit called,

Community Conservation Service (CCS), to provide linkage between park management

and local communities surrounding National Parks (Chengullah 1998).

CCS is an outreach program with two fundamental functions, support of extension

and benefit sharing. The objectives of the CCS are (1) to improve relations between

individual National Parks and local communities, (2) to ensure that the interests of

National Parks with regard to natural resources and community welfare are represented at

all levels of the government, (3) to facilitate the planned sharing of benefits to target

communities, (4) to assist communities in gaining access to information, resources, and

services which promote sustainable development, and (5) to encourage community

conservation initiatives by different interested parties (Chengullah 1998).

Since its inception as a pilot project in Serengeti National Park in 1988, CCS has

slowly expanded to other National Parks, including Tarangire, Arusha, Lake Manyara,

Ruaha, and Kilimanjaro National Parks. Currently, the program covers all twelve

National Parks in Tanzania.

Funding for CCS enables local communities and National Parks to work together

on community development projects. Each park receives 7.5% of its recurrent budget to

assist communities with their self-initiative projects. Using Community Conservation

Wardens (CCW) appointed to each National Park to coordinate this program, CCS

provides support for community initiated projects (SCIP). TANAPA uses the SCIP

program as a direct benefit sharing mechanism for its communities. Some of the

achievements (completed and on-going) of the SCIP programme include the

following:(funding totals are in Tanzania shillings)

Mikumi National Park. (a) two classrooms constructed for Mikumi Mpya

Primary School (774,400), (b) contribution to Doma Village dispensary and repair of

doctor's housing quarters (5,488,842), (c) construction of Maharaka Village dispensary

(3,592,192), (d) construction of Ruhembe Village dispensary (4,307,538), and (e) two

classrooms built for Mikumi Secondary School (5,509,708). Other on-going projects

include the construction of Gomero and Idogobasi Village dispensaries, Masanze

Secondary School, Kilangali Primary School, and a chemistry laboratory for Mikumi

Second School (Ochinal998).

Udzungwa National Park. (a) Msolwa Dispensary (5,981,220), (b) laboratory

constructed for Mang'ula Udzungwa Secondary School (6,404,539.20), (c) Mlimani

Primary School desks (129,900), and (d) Kisawasawa Women's group fuel efficient

restaurant and toilet (1,959,886). In addition, there are several on-going projects which

combine with the completed projects to total 37,148,349.90 (Chengullah 1998).

Conservation Committees. UNP, through CCS, is currently assisting villages by

establishing a more formalized mechanism for integration into park management. With

the establishment of Village Community Conservation Committees (VCCC), it is

expected that a more successful partnership between the community and their park can be

achieved (Chengullah 1998). It is also hoped that the committees will help develop

programs for sustainable management of forest resources still remaining outside the park.

To date, 14 surrounding villages, out of 17 total (including two of the SUA/TU Linkage

Project villages, Kisawasawa and Sanje) have already formed these village committees

and names of nominees have been submitted to the CCS staff (Chengullah 1998). MNP

has not yet implemented conservation committees.

Memorandum of Understanding. Despite UNP's legal status as a National

Park, it is unique because it allows extractive use of the park's resources. Through a

memorandum of understanding between UNP and the District Council, this agreement

allows for the extraction of firewood and the collection of medicinal plants (Chengullah

pers. com., Hoyle 1997). A strict procedure of implementation (e.g., permits), allows

villagers to enter the park two days per week (Friday and Sunday), for the purpose of

collecting firewood (Chengullah 1998, Hoyle 1997). However, no cutting tools are

allowed. Firewood collection is only a temporary provision that will be discontinued

once the agro-forestry program (initiated in 1991) is well established to satisfactorily

provide alternative firewood to the communities (Chengullah 1998). In addition,

TANAPA also issues special permits for the collection of medicinal plants for traditional

healers, the collection of grass, and entry for traditional religious ceremonies (Chengullah

1998, Hoyle 1997). MNP does not currently have a mechanism in place that would allow

for the legal extractive use of the park's natural resources.

Education. UNP has an extensive environmental education program. These

activities, coordinated through CCS, are conducted for various age levels throughout the

community. A number of teaching materials have been prepared (the majority are printed

in Kiswahili), distributed, and made readily available to the local communities. Materials

available have included posters, books, and audio-visual presentations. Guided study

tours are also offered to the local schools at no charge. Guided study tours for local

schools are also currently provided by MNP. Because of the lack of educational

materials, they have not effectively conducted educational outreach programs.

Current State of Affairs

With the pending withdrawal of the SUA/TU Linkage Project and thus USAID

financial support in the four study villages adjacent to UNP and MNP, the long-term

sustainability of community development and park relationships is questionable. The

Linkage Project was instrumental in providing a variety of community development

projects which theoretically should reduce local community animosity and conflicts with

park management and conservation objectives. However, the extent to which this and

other conservation objectives were accomplished is not known. In addition, the

sustainability of village-level activities in light of the withdrawal of financial and

technical assistance and support remains to be seen.

Mkomazi Game Reserve

Since it's gazettement in 1951, there have been a number of suggestions for

alternative uses of the Mkomazi Game Reserve (MGR), other than wildlife conservation

(Anderson 1967, Harris 1972, Watson 1991). Recommendations have included National

Park status, free range grazing, multi-purpose game reserve, cattle ranching and game

cropping, and professional hunting.

Historical Approaches

National Park. In an April 10, 1965 report, entitled "The Potential of the MGR

as a National Park," Phillip Thresher (member of IUCN) assessed MGR's capacity to

achieve National Park status (Thresher 1965). In his report he recognized the importance

of MGR as an important wildlife refuge, particularly for the oryx, gernuk, elephant,

rhino, and klipspringer. He also recognized the shortcomings of MGR in terms of scenic

value that did not compare to other east African National Parks (e.g., Serengeti and Lake

Manyara) and thus could not attract a steady flow of tourists.

The report recommended that Tanzania National Parks should give no immediate

further consideration to the creation of a new National Park in place of the MGR unless

maintenance and operating expenditures could be met from funds not likely to be

available to it at that time. Another reason for not becoming a National Park was the lack

of available water for human and wildlife consumption. If funding and water supply

concerns could be addressed, MGR may be able to attain National Park status. However,

today it remains a Reserve and a National Park.

Grazing land. Professor Leslie Robinette, an instructor from the College of

African Wildlife Management in Mweka, directed a team of instructors, 33 students, and

representatives from the Tanzania Game Division to complete an assessment of range

conditions and trends within the MGR from March 14-19, 1996 (Robinette et al. 1966).

This report is entitled, "Appraisal of Range Conditions on the Kalimawe Controlled

Area." The study area was that portion of the Kalimawe Control Area (KCA) which

covers approximately 92,000 acres and was a part of the MGR up until 1957 when it was

excised in response to demands for grazing land by the local people (Anderson 1967,

Harris 1972, Robinette et al. 1966).

The findings of this report confirmed the poor to very poor vegetation condition

classifications for the Kalimawe region. It also noted that the only good grazing area

remaining in the KCA lay in the mbugas north and south of Semtula Hill and could

therefore sustain no more than 5,000 cow months of grazing annually. Finally, this report

stopped short of offering a solution to MGR current land-use concerns; it recommended,

however, that "providing additional grazing inside the MGR is not the answer, because

given time it would be overgrazed and denuded also" (Robinette et al. 1966:4).

Multi-purpose game reserve. The "Anderson Report" as it has been commonly

referred to, is more formally entitled, "A Reconnaissance Survey of the Land Use

Potential of Mkomazi Game Reserve and an Appraisal of Factor Affecting Present and

Potential Land Use and Productivity in its Environs" (Anderson 1967). G.D. Anderson

conducted this survey in 1967, under the authority of the Ministry of Agriculture with

assistance from the Research Unit and Land Planning Team of the Ministry at Tengeru.

The objective of the report was to present a factual account of the factors affecting

the present and potential land-use of the MGR. This report provided a list of

recommendations, while the overall concluding points stated that "the Mkomazi must

remain a workable unit with its present boundaries; it must also be developed as a multi-

purpose Reserve with game cropping and visitors contributing to the Reserve..."

(Anderson 1967:37). This report has since become one of the most widely recognized

documents on the land use of the MGR.

Cattle ranching and game cropping. A.C. Parker, Wildlife Services Limited,

Kenya, completed a report that presented the results of two elephant cropping projects in

the MGR in 1969 along with an assessment of the Reserve's overall economic potential.

This report, "Results of Two Elephant Harvests in the MGR, accompanied by

Considerable Background Information Extracted from Previous Research and Synthesis

Efforts," concluded that the "foreseeable monetary returns from cattle far exceed the

wildlife possibilities" (Parker 1969:1). This reports further recommends that a

"detailed assessment of the cattle ranching potential of the MGR should be
undertaken immediately ..., if the results of such assessment were to confirm the
feasibility of beef production, the MGR be degazetted as such and redesignated as
a multiple use area for the exploitation of cattle and game" (Parker 1969:58).

In addition, this report recommended that elephant cropping be maximally exploited on a

sustainable yield basis.

Professional hunting. J. Barry Turner, a Canadian University Services Overseas

(CUSO) volunteer, served a two-year term as Game Management Officer of the MGR

starting September 1, 1969. A review of Turner's monthly and annual progress reports

shows that he supported and possibly advocate professional hunting in the MGR, which

was subsequently introduced on an experimental basis on February 1, 1970 (Turner

1970a, 1970b).

Contemporary Approaches

Today the MGR's scientific and aesthetic values have practically become

overshadowed by extraneous demands placed upon it (Mangubuli 1992). Recently, the

Reserve has been thrust into the international spotlight and is at the center of an ever-

increasing and volatile scientific, and human-rights debate.

In comparison to many of the more well-known protected areas in East Africa, the

MGR remains a relatively unknown tourist destination, in large part because it does not

support many of the major megafauna species, and it suffers from a lack of aesthetic

appeal compared to other more "stereotypical" images of parks in the region (Coe et al.

1999). Nevertheless, for reasons unrelated to its ecological significance, the MGR has

become a valuable tool for those championing the rights of indigenous people and those

aspiring to protect its threatened ecosystem. Heated debates fueled by local and

international players, using highly questionable reports, papers and websites, pit

misconceptions and hostility surrounding the best land-use of the Reserve against local

communities' customary land right claims.

In light of its past management difficulties, MGR has now embarked on

community-based initiative projects. The details are described below.

Rehabilitation project. In 1989 the Tanzanian government designated MGR as a

National Priority Project (Fitzjohn 1998, MGR 1999a, Mangubuli 1992, Zacharia 1990).

Such designation committed the government to implement and support activities aimed at

restoring the MGR as a significant wildlife area. In light of this recognition, the

Tanzanian government invited Tony Fitzjohn, under the auspices of the Tanzania

Wildlife Division, to lead a program of habitat restoration (MGR 1999a, 1999b, Watson

1991). This was the start of a new partnership that would include the difficult task of

revitalizing a damaged ecosystem. As such, the MGR Rehabilitation Project (Project)

was launched (Watson 1991). This Project has been generously supported by an

extensive network of fundraising efforts on behalf of the George Adamson African

Wildlife Preservation Trusts (Trusts), whose networks extend throughout the United

States, Canada, Europe, and Tanzania. Contributors include small groups of individuals,

corporate sponsors, and charitable institutions. To date, the Trusts have invested over a

million dollars in this undertaking and continues to contribute financial support and

technical assistance to the Project.

This important, yet unique endeavor began the tedious task of rebuilding the

Reserve's infrastructure, reintroducing wildlife, and establishing the MGR Outreach

Programme (MGR 1999a, 1999b). The components of this Project are described below

in greater detail.

Infrastructure. By the late 1980s the Reserve's infrastructure was in a desperate

state of disrepair and neglect (MGR 1999a). During this time, the Tanzanian government

lacked adequate financial resources and was hard pressed to meet the demands of

competing claims on its meager resources (Watson 1991). As a result, MGR was given

low priority and suffered from the lack of manpower, transportation, equipment, and

financial support.

With Field Director Tony Fitzjohn at the helm of the Project, however, rebuilding

of the infrastructure proposed: clearing roads and airstrips, installing a radio network,

recruiting and equipping game rangers, repairing the electric and solar powered

equipment, remarking portions of the Reserve boundary, identifying and pumping water

sources, and organizing aerial and ground anti-poaching patrols (Fitzjohn 1998).

Endangered species reintroduction. By 1988 the Reserve's wildlife population

was severely threatened by poaching, illegal encroachment, land degradation, and

deliberate burning (MGR 1999a). Poaching in the mid to late 1960s, in part, was led to

the total extermination of the Black Rhino (Diceros bicornis) and the decline of several

other wildlife species in the Reserve (MGR 1999a).

To reintroduce the rhino, in November 1997 the MGR translocated four East

African Black Rhinos from Addo National Park in South Africa, with an additional six

expected (MGR 1999d). In actuality, the Black Rhinos obtained from South Africa were

descendants from a group of seven animals that had been shipped there from Tsavo

National Park in Tanzania in the early 1960s and thus belonged to the subspecies,

Diceros bicornis michaeli (Coe et al. 1999). Shortly after their arrival they were released

into a holding compound within the newly constructed Rhino Sanctuary (Fitzjohn 1998,

MGR 1999a). The Sanctuary, constructed in 1995, covers an area of 43 km2 and is

equipped with an electric fence and security patrol (MGR 1999d). All animals were

subsequently fitted with telemetry transmitters prior to their release from the holding

compound into the sanctuary (Coe et al. 1999, MGR 1999d). To date, the Rhinos are

reported in excellent health and security remains a high priority.

The second reintroduction program was that of the African Wild Dog (Lycaon

pictus lupinus) (Fitzjohn 1998). It was launched in 1997 through a joint program with the

Kenya Wildlife Service (MGR 1999e). Twenty-five wild dogs (15 males and 10 females)

were captured from Maasai Steppe (approximately 100 km from MGR) and placed in

three breeding compounds, one each at Kisima, Lendenai, and Sangito (Coe et al. 1999,

MGR 1999e). Before their release all of the adult dogs were radio-collared, and

subsequent intermittent aerial flights tracked their approximate locations (MGR 1999e).

Also during their first year of captivity, all of the dogs received intensive medical

attention, including on-going vaccinations, blood and serum samplings, and feces

analysis (Fitzjohn 1998). Six adult dogs were released in Tsavo National Park in Kenya,

while the others, including pups, will be used to maintain a breeding stock and released in

a series of staged reintroductions (Coe et al. 1999).

Outreach programme. Also included among the Project's priority was the

establishment of a community-based initiative to assist with conserving biodiversity of

the Reserve through a series of village outreach projects (MGR 1999b).

In 1993, the MGR Outreach Programme (Programme) was launched at the request

of the Tanzanian government (MGR 1999a). The original idea of the Programme was

developed and coordinated by Harrie and Truus Simons; later this responsibility was

assumed by the Tanzanian government and assisted by the Trusts. The goal of this

Programme is to establish community programs for the residents of the villages

surrounding the Reserve. These efforts are a long-term commitment to provide local

communities an opportunity to derive benefits from the Reserve. Needless to say, this is

a major task at hand, especially considering that there are 41 villages and three districts

bordering the Reserve (MGR 1999b).

With funding obtained from the Trusts, several projects have been completed and

include the following: roofing of a regional secondary school, rehabilitation of several

primary schools, expansion of women's groups, improvement of medical dispensaries,

establishment of outreach offices, provision of physiotherapy equipment for disabled

children, employment of a District Game Officer, salary of a teacher, sponsorship of a

teacher to attend a Wildlife College, payment of secondary school fees, and the

sponsorship of the MGR football team (Fitzjohn 1998, 1999, MGR 1999b). The Trusts

have contributed funds to build a secondary Technical and Environmental College in

Kisiwani village. Additional funding is being sought for the completion of school

buildings, construction of the main office and "headmaster's" house, and provision of a

clean water supply for the school facilities and laboratories (Fitzjohn 1998, MGR 1999a).

Future plans include a coordinated effort to focus on literacy and natural resource

education programs and the construction of a local hospital (MGR 1999a).

Ecological research programme. In 1989 the Ministry of Natural Resources and

Tourism and the Tanzania Wildlife Division invited the Royal Geographical Society

(London) to conduct an ecological inventory survey of the MGR (Coe et al. 1998, Habari

za Mkomazi 1995). This request came as a result of increasing concerns about land

degradation, and loss of biodiversity, as well as National Priority Project status given to

the MGR, designating the area for rehabilitation (Coe et al. 1999). In 1994 the Mkomazi

Research Programme was officially established. This was a five-year study with the goal

"to describe the habitats of the MGR in both floral and fauna terms, in order to generate

models which will delineate the factors responsible for their observed patterns of

distribution, abundance and species diversity" (McWilliam and Packer 1998:3). The

ecological inventory of the MGR, including a pilot survey, was conducted between 1993

and 1997, and involved "surveying, sorting, cataloguing, quantifying and mapping of a

variety of ecosystem components" (Coe et al. 1999). Research activities collected

baseline data on the floral and fauna diversity of the MGR (Habari za Mkomazi 1995).

This included collecting data on climate, soil, vegetation, arthropods, vertebrates, and

human aspects of the MGR (Coe et al.1999).

The main objective of the study was to develop a viable management plan to

provide for the long-term conservation and sustainable use of the Reserve, incorporating

both ecological concerns and anthropogenic pressures (McWilliam and Packer 1998).

This project was a large collaborative endeavor with financial investments and other

support obtained from British Airways, British Petroleum Tanzania, British Council,

Land Rover, Sheraton Hotel (Dar es Salaam), Friends of Conservation, Darwin Initiative,

and the Trusts (Habari za Mkomazi 1995).

Current State of Affairs

During the past three years, several events have and probably will continue to

have a dramatic impact on future conservation management decisions, approaches, and

policies for the MGR.

High Court decision

In 1997 consolidated Civil Cases No. 33 of 1994 and No. 33 of 1995 were filed

in the High Court of Tanzania at Moshi (High Court of Moshi 1998, Mustafa 1997). This

suit was filed on behalf of 38 plaintiffs, represented by S.E. Mchome and I.H. Juma of

the University of Dar es Salaam Legal Aid Clinic against the Ministry of Tourism,

Natural Resources and Environment, Director of the Tanzania Wildlife Division, Project

Manager of Mkomazi Game Reserve, and the Attorney General (Mustafa 1997). After

several delays, this case was finally heard before the High Court on June 19, 1998.

According to the judgement filed, the plaintiffs claim: (1) the customary residents

of the MGR are not subordinate to the rights of the wildlife in the MGR, (2) the forceful

eviction or otherwise of the residents of the MGR was not done in accordance with the

law, (3) neither the Fauna Conservation Ordinance Cap. 302 nor the Wildlife

Conservation Act 1974 expressly or implicitly extinguished the customary pastoral land

rights of the Alalilai Lamwasun (expansive plains) pastoral Maasai residents of the MGR,

(4) the exorbitant compounded fines imposed on the evicted pastoral Maasai by the third

defendant were unlawful and unconstitutional, and (5) any other relief deemed fit by the

Court (High Court of Moshi 1998). In this suit the pastoral Maasai asserted their

respective customary land rights over the MGR and testified that their eviction from the

Reserve in 1988 kept them from living where their ancestors had lived. The defendants

represented by the Principal State Attorney denied the plaintiffs' claims. The following

are excerpts of the findings from the Civil Court Case (High Court of Moshi 1998):

First issue. Whether the plaintiffs and their families had customary land rights in

the MGR prior to their eviction.

Finding. The judge ruled that the plaintiffs did have customary land rights in the

Umba Game Reserve (eastern half), the portion of the MGR located in the Lushoto

District, Tanga Region. This was corroborated by a list ofpastoralists compiled by the

former Game Warden, Tanga and Same. However, the testimony provided by David

Anstey (former MGR Game Ranger) was upheld to which evidence on the Same District

of the MGR indicated that there were no customary land rights in this area as the

boundary was altered to exclude them. The judged advised the plaintiffs that the case

should have therefore been pleaded before the High Court of Tanzania at Tanga as the

customary land rights were in the UGR located in Lushoto District.

Second issue. Whether the eviction of the plaintiffs and their families from the

UGR was lawful.

Findings. The judge ruled that the eviction of the plaintiffs and their families

from the Umba section of the MGR was unlawful in that customary land rights were not

properly extinguished within the provisions of the 1967 Land Acquisition Act and Land

Ordinance Cap. 113 before the Reserve's gazettement (establishment) in 1951. In

addition, although the eviction was unlawful, their plea was time barred since the eviction

took place more than ten years previously.

Third issue. Whether by virtue of the forceful eviction the plaintiffs and their

families suffered damages.

Findings. The judge ruled that the plaintiffs were seriously inconvenienced, had

suffered a crisis, and had been evicted from the Reserve without resettlement assistance

in terms of providing alternative land. However, the claim for damages was time barred

under the Law of Limitation Act No. 10/71.

Fourth issue. Whether the plaintiffs and their families were entitled to

alternative land and compensation.

Findings. The judge ruled that they were entitled to alternative land and

compensation. The compensation would redress for the inconvenience, hardship, and

dislocation of the plaintiffs as well as for provide new shelter, foodstuff, domestic gear,

and etc. The judge awarded each of the 38 plaintiffs compensation of 300,000 Tanzanian


Fifth issue. What reliefs were the parties entitled to.

Findings. The judge ruled that the complaint regarding the exorbitant fines for

compounded offences was not proved, since the plaintiffs could have appealed to the

Director of Wildlife. The judge denied a request by the plaintiffs to be returned as lawful

residents of the MGR, for the suit has been overtaken by events.

Finally, the judge issued no declaration regarding whose rights were superior,

customary land rights or rights of wildlife in the MGR (plaintiffs plea for compensation

that their customary land rights had been made subordinate to the rights of wildlife in the

MGR). She also ruled that MGR is a Reserve for wildlife and therefore any customary

land rights had ceased to exist. She ruled that the defendants should relocate the

pastoralist plaintiffs in an area with sufficient grazing land for plaintiffs to resettle on a

self-help basis. A set compensation was paid to the plaintiffs to enable and facilitate their

resettlement, while others who found alternative settlement were not bound to take up

any new settlement offer.

Illegal encroachment

Following the gazettement of MGR in 1951, illegal encroachment concerns have

steadily increased from about the mid 1960s to the present day (Harris per comm.).

Official Tanzanian written reports as well as unofficial documents (e.g., field notes,

diaries, and personal communication) provide definitive information on the increasing

difficulties faced by former Reserve officials and employees in combating illegal

encroachment of people and their livestock.

Reported difficulties include, the lack of available transportation for routine patrol

of the Reserve, low priority given to illegal encroachment cases by the local judicial

officials and game department administrators, and extremely low fines for offenders.

With this backdrop, it is frustrating to report that illegal encroachment continues today,

although the level and thus frequency of occurrence is uncertain. But nevertheless, there

has been personal observation of people with livestock within the Reserve boundary

despite the 1988 eviction ofpastoralists and livestock (pers. corns., D.Anstey 1999 and S.

Canney 1998).


During the current Information Age, use of the World Wide Web (www) has

experienced phenomenal growth. The technological advances made via the Internet have

become an almost indispensable tool for many individuals seeking pertinent information

on conservation and a multitude of other topics (Collins 2000). Despite the

overwhelming benefit provided via the Internet, determining the accuracy of the

information on the www can be quite difficult. Unfortunately, some of the information

obtained is erroneous, misleading, and based upon unsubstantiated claims.

Today the Internet has become a playground for many advocacy groups who seek

to "inform" the masses. For instance, within the last five years, the Internet has exploded

on the scene for MGR and has since become a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it

has served as an invaluable medium, reaching massive worldwide audiences that were

inaccessible in the past. While on the other hand, the Internet has served as a volatile

battleground where the MGR has become a cause celebre for those advocating human

rights and those wishing to retain its protected status as a game reserve (Coe et al. 1999).

The result is a war of words, often distorted by questionable motives, erroneous truths,

and exaggerated "facts."

In an attempt to comprehend this powerful tool, I summarized a list of "hits" (the

number of web sites encountered) for the MGR. Five search engines were used to review

sites for MGR and Mkomazi, respectively. The results for each search engine are

presented as follows (Table 2). The relevance of this brief analysis highlights how

emerging technologies (via Internet) can thrust a relatively unknown area and issue (e.g.,

MGR) into the global spotlight where its future can be examined, and debated by an

international audience. The resulting benefits and potential negative consequences are

difficult to measure. The impacts of such technology may be fully realized or understood

only after a considerable expanse of time when such impacts can reasonably be assessed,

that is, after the dust has settled. The challenge, however, will be to achieve a defined

level of creditability and sustained quality of information (Collins 2000).

Table 2. Internet searches for the Mkomazi Game Reserve

Search engine MGR Mkomazi 200 20 32 46 26 48 14 14 79 138

For MGR, past management problems, development activities, unresolved human

occupancy issues, competing land-use potentials, and internet implications have all

contributed to the current state of affairs. Therefore, taken together, the current political,

ecological, and economic situation can best be described as a "mess." According to the

Merriam-Webster Dictionary (2000), "mess" when used as a noun, is defined as a

"disorderly mass or accumulation, jumble, a confusing state of affairs." By no means is

the use of this term meant to be derogatory or offensive in nature, but when used

properly, it accurately defines the current state of affairs of the MGR.


These three case studies were selected because they provided a discernable

continuum of conservation approaches that incorporated varying degrees of park

management strategies, implementation, enforcement, and community-level participation.

Along this continuum of top-down and bottom-up approaches, the three case studies are

arranged midway between the top-down and community level co-management approach

(Figure 1), with MGR being closer to the top. This is followed by MNP, with UNP being

closer to the co-management approach than the other two.

Along this gradient, co-management can be viewed as a "compromise" or middle

ground for meeting conservation and development goals that involve either local

community input, participation and/or cooperation. The idea behind this approach is to

move beyond the paternalistic approach ofprovisionary services and strict enforcement

to a system whereby immediate tangible benefits are provided to local communities

through their cooperative efforts of sustainable biodiversity conservation.

One of the goals behind this analysis was to provide evidence to suggest that these

three protected areas are making an earnest attempt to move past the rhetoric of

community-based conservation to actual implementation. Although it is too early to


speculate about their success or failure, it is clear that all three of the protected areas are

approaching their individual management challenges with creativity, flexibility,

optimism, and caution.


Questionnaire Surveys

This chapter presents the results of surveys taken to assess local attitudes and

conservation awareness among the population adjacent to Udzungwa and Mikumi

National Parks. Participants in the surveys included, park staff, household, village

leaders, and women's group from four communities adjacent to the parks; specifically,

Maharaka, Msongozi, Kisawasawa, and Sanje.

This portion of the study compliments the previous chapter (chapter 4) for in

addition to quantitative data, it provides community-level insight that can be used by each

National Park to review the effectiveness of their current management approaches. Such

a review can be used to guide future management strategies and conservation policies.


A structured face-to-face household survey was conducted in four villages in the

study area, Maharaka, Msongozi, Kisawasawa, and Sanje. Through these surveys, 178

households were asked questions relating to their socio-economic status, knowledge of

conservation, attitude towards the park and conservation, and estimates of crop damage

and animal loss.

Socio-economic and background information

Overall, 44% of all the local people surveyed stated that they had always lived in

their respective village. On average, 29% of the respondents had lived in their present

village at least 21-30 years, while 23% had lived there for more than 40 years (Table 3).

Male-dominated households accounted for 83% of the respondents, with an

average household size of 5 (22.5%), composed typically of two adults and 3 children.

The combined highest education level attained per household was 5-8 years (77.5%),

while over 97% had traveled from their local community to either other villages or cities

(Table 3). Finally, although present employment occupations varied, only 5% had ever

been employed by either National Park (Table 3). However, over 13% of the respondents

in Maharaka had previously worked for Mikumi National Park.

Knowledge of conservation

Each respondent was asked to define the word "conservation." There were no

correct or incorrect answers; the question was used merely to determine if this was a

familiar term. Seventy-five percent defined conservation, whereas 25% did not recognize

the term (Table 4). Access to audio or printed conservation materials was available to

58% of the overall respondents; this information was more readily available to

Kisawasawa and Sanje villages than the other two. While only 15% stated that there was

a conservation group or organization in their area, 43% of the respondents in Kisawasawa

associated the local women's group with conservation efforts in the community.


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