Lion Landscapes – Joining Forces

Over the past year we have been collaborating with Lion Landscapes and standardising our approaches to make an even greater impact. Founded by Alayne Cotterill, Lion Landscapes works in Kenya and Zambia, and our collaboration seeks to find the most…

Tilting the scale in favour of carnivores

African large carnivores have disappeared from most of their former ranges. It has been estimated that, as of today, three of the largest East African carnivores – African wild dog, lion and cheetah – are no longer found in over…

RCP 2019 Annual Report

Despite some delays as a result of this extremely challenging year, we are thrilled that the 2019 Annual Report for Ruaha Carnivore Project has been published. The report is available at http://www.ruahacarnivoreproject.com/Annual-Report and serves as a wonderful reminder that even…



The Ruaha Carnivore Project (RCP), part of Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU) was established in 2009 to help develop effective conservation strategies for large carnivores in Tanzania’s remote Ruaha landscape. This vast, amazing wilderness supports around 10% of all remaining lions, as well as one of only four cheetah populations in East Africa with >200 adults, the third biggest population of endangered African wild dogs left in the world, and globally important populations of spotted hyaenas and leopards.

Ruaha Location

The Ruaha landscape in Tanzania - East Africa


Given the dramatic decline of these species – for instance lions have disappeared from over 80% of their range and both cheetahs and African wild dogs from over 90% of theirs – Ruaha is an extremely important area for carnivore conservation.  However, even here, they are threatened by many factors including intense conflict with local people, as the Park is unfenced and human-dominated land outside the Park represents a key part of carnivore range. Despite the huge global value of these carnivore populations, local people often see little or no value in their presence, while also suffering significant costs – such as through livestock attacks – from their presence. Unsurprisingly, villagers often kill carnivores in order to try to protect themselves, and this has led to an extremely high level of carnivore killing in this landscape. Furthermore, Ruaha’s crucially important carnivore populations have been very understudied, which hinders the development of effective conservation strategies


 The Ruaha Carnivore Project works with partners within Tanzania and across the world to do two things: (i) gather baseline data on carnivore numbers and ecology, in order to help develop appropriate conservation strategies, and (ii) work closely with local communities to effectively reduce human-carnivore conflict. This work will have vital benefits for both people and predators in this globally important landscape. Human-wildlife conflict is one of the most severe and rapidly growing threats facing wildlife today, and has major impacts on local people, so the lessons learned from Ruaha can also help inform conflict mitigation strategies in the many other places where this is a critically important issue.

RCP Team