Destruction of forests for agriculture, logging, and charcoal burning and pasturing of animals has contributed to deterioration of Kenya's river systems. Being the source of water for wild animals as Kenya's tourism economic booster, some private individuals have improvised ways of making a living out of Kakamega forest in Kenya by maintaining it and bringing to glory.
Kakamega forest in Kenya which though small has more than seventy percent of Kenya's butterflies with diverse species has changed the life of many people living around the forest financially. Many residents turned to the butterfly business even to the extent of exporting them to earn more to European countries for decorative uses. Two butterflies being ample to earn people engaging butterfly farming over nine hundred and fifty dollars a month, many residents decided to get into the business. Forest conservation if taken seriously by each and every person in the world could have enormously improved the climate entirely but ignorance has led us into the climatic disaster we are facing today globally. Take for instance the Kakamega forest which used to be over five hundred and ninety thousand acres back in 1820 and now despite all the efforts to conserve it it's a meager 56834 acres.
Kakamega residents have discovered a new way of conserving the forest. This is through butterfly farming which is also beneficial to the farmers since it earns them livelihood. The Kakamega forest has more than 700 different butterfly species. The farmers export the butterflies when alive, as pupae or even when the butterflies are dead. The most profitable butterflies are the most local because they are not common and therefore much valuable. Through butterfly farming, Kakamega residents are not only earning a living but also saving the forest from destruction. This is very significant since this area is densely populated hence more pressure of natural resources like forest. BIOTA East which is a project German has funded has been working on conserving the Kakamega forest and the key objective if the project is establishment of strategies which will help is achieving sustainable forest use: Butterfly farming is one of such strategies.
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