Protected Areas

411

Areas Protected

- 72,545 km2 Land
- 904 km2 Ocean

Terrestrial and Inland Water

12.36%

8%

Area protected, as per WDPA

Area protected, as per country reports

Coastal and Marine Coverage

0.80%

Not Found

Area protected, as per WDPA

Area protected, as per country reports

Key species

Kenya is endowed with diverse ecosystems and habitats that are home to unique and diverse flora and fauna. Over 7,000 plant species have been recorded in Kenya with over 1,000 of those endemic or near-endemic. 356 plant species have been assessed through the IUCN Red List process as threatened, a third of which are endemic to Kenya. It is estimated that over 5,000 species of fungus occur in the country although only 2,000 have been documented.

Pressures and threats

The overriding threat facing biodiversity in Kenya is habitat degradation, fragmentation and loss, such as land use changes, physical modification of rivers or excessive withdrawal from rivers, loss of coral reefs, and damage to sea floors due to trawling. The main drivers are human population growth, exerting pressure on biodiversity habitats and land resources; poverty leading to unsustainable use of land resources and biodiversity and limited financial resources to support biodiversity conservation.

The post-independence government inherited four national parks and six game reserves, gazetted through a parliamentary process. In addition, there are quite a number of game reserves that are under the management of local authorities. There also a host of privately or/and communally owned wildlife conservancies. Subsequently the numbers of these parks and reserves have greatly increased.

Protected and conserved areas designated as global sites of importance

Global designation

Number of sites

UNESCO Man and Biosphere Reserves

6

UNESCO World Heritage Sites (Natural or Mixed)

3

Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar sites)

6

Source ((Ramsar, 2019; UNESCO, 2019a, 2019b)

 

Priority areas for conservation

Designation

Number of sites

Alliance for Zero Extinction sites

6

Important Bird & Biodiversity Areas

68

Key Biodiversity Areas

72

(AZE Secretariat, 2019; BirdLife International, 2019c, 2019a)

Regional Reference Information System Kenya

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