The Physical State Of Forest Cover and Land Use in Kenya: A Case of Nandi Hills Forests in Nandi County, Kenya


The Nandi Hills and Forests in the Nandi County are major water catchments for the Lake Victoria. However, these resources have faced significant decline and degradation in recent times, thereby impacting the hydrological quality and quantity in the Lake Victoria Basin. This study was informed by the observed degradation of the Nandi Hills and Nandi Forests, epitomized by the receding forest cover, drying up of previously permanent streams, instances of mudslides and rock falls, and downstream flooding. This paper sought to establish the state of and use of the Nandi Hills/Forests as water catchment area in Nandi County, Kenya. The study adopted a mixed methodological design which incorporated both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. The mixed methodological approaches used in this study were the concurrent triangulation and nested/embedded designs. A four-tier analysis was carried out once all the data had been coded and grouped. The analysis covered three categories of the population in the study area; namely the households, institutions and community groups, and analysis of Landsat images for change detection. Analysis of the Landsat images revealed a grim state of the receding natural forest cover. However the uptake of on-farm forestry by the locals is seen as a potential remedy for the dwindling forest cover.

Keywords: Land Cover, Nandi Hills/ Forests, Water Catchment, Water towers., ecosystem services, land use

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 37-49 (Download PDF)

Creative Commons Licence
This work by European American Journals is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License