The role of the Chyulu Hills in the delivery of ecosystem services in south-eastern Kenya

The Chyulu Hills are an iconic landscape located in the world-famous Amboseli-Tsavo ecosystem in south Eastern Kenya. These hills provide a variety of ecosystem services which underpin the livelihoods of local and regional communities. The cloud forest that grows on top of the hills collects water through cloud condensation. This water is then channelled through porous volcanic rock and emerges at various springs. The most well-known of these springs is Mzima, which contributes approximately 40% to Mombasa’s water supply. However, the forests are currently under threat from both anthropogenic activities and climate-related factors. In an effort to protect these forests and secure these important ecosystem services, the current study set out to identify critical ecosystem service delivery areas which should be included in future conservation initiatives.