One of Mara Elephant Project’s key research mandates is to share our knowledge with other conservation organizations so that we can all do our best to protect wildlife and wild spaces in Kenya and Africa. Mara Elephant Project (MEP) believes that openly sharing our organization’s best practices developed over the last decade of operation can ensure the long-term survival of a keystone species like elephants.
Recently, Save the Elephants (STE) joined MEP on our campus for an EarthRanger training led by MEP’s Director of Research & Conservation Dr. Jake Wall. EarthRanger is a software solution helping conservationists with security, ecological management, research, and human-wildlife coexistence by streamlining vast troves of data into a system giving those on the frontlines the information they need to make informed decisions for wildlife conservation. MEP uses EarthRanger to unlock the power of all the data we collect — locations of elephants, rangers and vehicles, past poaching incidents, weather and many more — to predict threats and plan landscapes for the future.
Director of Research and Conservation Dr. Jake Wall and Conservation Officer Wilson Sairowua presenting to the STE group.
Dr. Wall is an early architect of EarthRanger, and MEP has been using the software since 2019. Save the Elephants, which created the STE tracking app with EarthRanger, is also adopting the EarthRanger system to visualize their collared elephants, protect them from poaching and human-elephant conflict and deploy rangers where needed. Key STE staff including Founder Dr. Iain Douglas-Hamilton, Research Scientist – Spatial Ecology Dr. Festus Ihwagi, Research Officer/GIS Benjamin Loloju and Research Manager Giacomo D’Ammando, participated for the organization.
During the three-day training course, Jake covered the fundamentals of utilizing the EarthRanger system and how to integrate other conservation applications into the system. He covered how MEP has collected and managed our data so that it best fits into EarthRanger’s system to create useful outputs.
Collaboration between conservation organizations like MEP and STE is critical for us to have an impact into the future and using technology like EarthRanger gives everyone a great leg up on saving this important species from extinction.