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IWC entanglement response training for Kenya

The latest Entanglement Response Training Workshop has completed in Watatmu, Kenya.    

In 2012, the IWC, in partnership with the Center for Coastal Studies (Provincetown, USA), began a global capacity building programme to teach safe and effective response to entangled whales.  The most recent Kenyan training involved 30 participants including government representatives, members of non-governmental organisations and the fishing community in the Watatmu region.  It was also supported by IWC entanglement expert panel member, Mike Meyer (South Africa), who was able to attend as a co-trainer. 

The two-day workshop began with classroom sessions which discussed the cetacean populations affected, the nature of the entanglement threat, and laws relevant to the region.  Despite persistent rain, 14 members of the group took to the water on the second day of training to practice disentanglement techniques, laying the foundations for the Kenyan Disentanglement Response Team.

The training also provided an opportunity to raise awareness of the entanglement issue in Africa,  and bring together the many different groups involved in tackling it.

It is hoped that this will be the start of further trainings and apprenticeships in Africa as the IWC’s Global Whale Entanglement Response Network continues to grow.  Since 2012, entanglement response workshops have been held on five continents and reached nearly 1200 participants from 34 different countries.

Primarily funded by the IWC, local participants also received support from Kenyan non-governmental organisations as well as the local hotel venue and sport fishing company.  The training was arranged in order to maximise overlap and take advantage of the IWC Scientific Committee meeting, held prior to the training workshop and hosted by the Kenyan Government in Nairobi.

The trainers expressed thanks to Jane Kinya and numerous other representatives of the Kenyan Government for their substantial efforts to make this a safe and successful training.

More information and images of the training are provided on the Facebook page of the Watamu Marine Association: click here to access this page on Facebook.

For more information about entanglement and the IWC’s response programme click here.

To read more about the 2019 IWC Scientific Committee Meeting in Kenya click here.