It all started as a chance meeting at a conference in Nairobi. Ben Roberts, Chief Technology officer at Liquid Telecom, was giving a presentation on their Internet of Things services when Ol Pejeta’s Head of Technology William Njoroge realised there could be an opportunity to explore how this tech could help run a wildlife conservancy.
Now, in partnership with Fauna & Flora International (FFI), Liquid Telecom and Arm, and supported with initial funds from The Royal Foundation, Ol Pejeta’s Conservation Tech Lab is supporting the research, testing, and development of new technology-based solutions to conservation challenges around the world.
Using the Internet of Things, the Tech Lab is helping advance remote sensing at Ol Pejeta as well as monitor animal movements using Sigfox, a Low Power Wide Area Network technology provided by Liquid Telecom. Sigfox technology is more cost-effective and allows for longer battery life than older radio collars or GSM solutions, which means the tracking devices we fit to animals are much less intrusive. Liquid telecom has donated four collars for initial testing on our livestock herds before we adapt them to support rhino tracking, which will enable us to collect important data and enhance Conservancy security.
“Collaboration between a technology company and conservation has proved that it is viable to quickly test emerging technology, and present a promising future where technology greatly enables conservation” - William Njoroge head of technology Ol Pejeta Conservancy.
We are currently researching how to use the Internet of Things to install smart meters in water tanks, to optimise water use in the Conservancy.