Research in Rwanda, it is not just the gorillas

Into the verdant volcanoes area of Rwanda

Dr Black

Dr Black

As we climbed out of Kigali on to one of the ridges leading north-west to the Volcanoes National Park area I was surprised to see the lush, green landscape spreading out across the ridges and valleys way into the distance. This landscape contrasted dramatically with northern Botswana where I have just spent three weeks – that is dry, dusty and sandy with sparse vegetation except along the rivers. The other thing that surprised me was the intense patchwork of small fields cultivated with sorghum, chillies, and beans and at higher altitudes Irish potatoes (as they are known here). This intense cultivation reflects Rwanda’s high population density of 477 people per square kilometre. Compare that with the USA of 35 and Australia of 3.

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Bunking in.. adventures doing research

The next instalment of Dr Rosemary Black’s AWF research  

BLOG episode 2 12/9/14.

The village of Parakarungu

The village of Parakarungu

Life and research in the villages

As I mentioned in my last blog the last two villages that I am surveying are Satau and Parakarungu. As these villages are so far from Kasane where I am staying, Georginah’s (my translator) mother has kindly offered to let us stay at her house for a few days to save me doing the long drive back and forth. Read more of this post

Where will your research take YOU?


Dr Rosemary Black

Dr Rosemary Black

ILWS researcher Dr Rosemary Black is currently undertaking a research project for the African Wildlife Fund (AWF) based in Kasane in northern Botswana – the tourist hub for Chobe National Park.

She is investigating the social and economic impacts of Ngoma Safari Lodge one of AWF’s Conservation Lodges (  located adjacent to Chobe National Park in Botswana on local communities. The lodge was set up with the assistance of AWF who helped negotiate the agreement between the private investors and the Chobe Enclave Convservation Trust (CECT). As part of the agreement the CECT gets annual income that is used for community projects within the five Enclave villages. The lodge opened about 3 years ago. The AWF is keen to know what the social and economic impacts of the lodge both positive and negative is having on the five villages  and whether  tourism is providing any benefits to the community and offering  an alternative livelihood option to local people.

This is her first report.

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Sturt's Notebook

Research, opinion and news from graduate students at the School of Environmental Science, Charles Sturt University

River Ecology and Research

Understanding how rivers function

Ian Lunt Ecology

Science and Nature Writing