Impacts of climate change and variability on livestock-based livelihood in Enkaroni location of Kajiado district, Kenya
Okati, S Juma K
MetadataShow full item record
People living in rural areas of Kajiado district depend on livestock for their survival. Livestock provides food, clothing and social factors. The main livestock species are cattle, sheep and goats. Nomadism and transhumance are the main forms of production system in this region. Climate variability and change which are manifested as frequent droughts and flush floods characterize this area. The study was carried out between the months of August 2008 and April 2009. The specific objectives of the study were to; 1) Identify the effects of seasonal climatic variability on the livestock based livelihood assets (livestock, pastures and water), 2) to determine impacts of seasonal climate variability on physical livelihood infrastructures, 3) Identify coping strategies being employed by the people in the face of adverse effects of climatic variabilities in Enkaroni location of Kaj iado District. The main findings were that climate variability and change has reduced the number of cattle per person from one hundred in the 1970s to about four. The number of sheep and goats were found to have increased from five in the 1970s to an average of ten per person. The numbers of donkeys have increased from zero in the 1970s to about four per household while camels have also been introduced in the area. Donkeys and camels are used in transport of water and the rise in the number indicates increased water stress. Enkaroni location experienced drought for twelve years between 1974 and 2007. Drought at times occurred for two consecutive years for example 1974-76, 1999/2000 and 2005/2006 while in the year 2007 floods caused Rift Valley fever which resulted to ban on consumption of red meat in the same while livestock have been so massive that the livelihood has been weakened. Vulnerability of the livelihood has consequently increased among the population. Any slight hazards impact greatly on the rural households as markets operated on seasonal trends.