Environmentally friendly tourism and hospitality around Lakes Burunge and Manyara, has helped to boost wildlife population in Tarangire ecosystem by over 85 percent.
It is also the component which drives visitors who want to experience responsible tourism to the Burunge Wildlife Management Area.
The Executive Secretary of Burunge Wildlife Management Area, Benson Mwaise, affirms.
“From the recently conducted periodical animal counting exercises, and the main census, populations of the Lion, Elephant and Wildebeests have greatly increased,” says Mwaise.
The African People and Wildlife reveals there is positive trajectory as far as the Lion Population in Tarangire is concerned.
Usage of clean sources of energy such as solar power, to run hotels and tourist lodges within the precinct is said to be one of the reasons why wild animals find peace within the WMA mapped within the Kwakuchinja wildlife passage.
“The other factor is that, licensed animal tracking and hunting in the EBN Hunting Safaris block have been replaced with photography tourism,” said Samuel Daudi Bayo the Assistant District Wildlife Officer.
According to Bayo, with no gunshots echoing within the landscape, wildlife species are now reproducing peacefully without stress.
“The Burunge Wildlife Management Area is a typical example of responsible tourism being operated by local people right from grassroots levels, involving investors for mutual benefit,” explains the Babati District Commissioner, Lazaro Jacob Twange.
DC Twange explains that nature-based tourism is the concept which now drives many foreign visitors to Babati where the number of tourists has doubled compared to previous years.
The Chemchem Association and EBN Safaris are the two entities behind ecotourism initiatives in Burunge.
All the lodges in the area run on clean energy including solar power whose panels can be seen at the properties.
“Visitors like the tranquil atmosphere, the animals don’t like noise and when we apply clean energy initiatives, both parties win,” explains Charles Sylvester Nyangi the coordinator at EBN Safari.
Located in the Tarangire ecosystem, within the Babati District of Manyara, the Burunge Wildlife Management Area covers 203 square Kilometers, with the adjacent Lake Burunge itself included.
The WMA borders Tarangire National Park to the east, Lake Manyara National Park to the west and Manyara Ranch to the north.
It is mapped within a semi-arid area with an average rainfall of 750 millimeters per annum.
The weather in Burunge is usually scorching hot and humid.
Two rainy seasons take place between February to May and November to January, respectively.
The dry season is from June to October, each year.
During wet seasons, the majority of the wildlife species migrate from both the Tarangire and Lake Manyara National Parks moving into the Burunge WMA.
Wildlife Management Area comprises ten villages encompassing 0.4 Square Kilometers of community land.
The villages pooled in the land which formed the WMA.
The about 300,000 residents, with over 90 percent of them practicing Livestock Grazing through Pastoralism and Agriculture. Other activities include fishing and hunting.
At the moment there is a rise in tourism related enterprises in the precinct.