Head, Pride of Meru Programme

Born Free

Meru National Park, Kenya
Negotiable depending on experience

Paid • Full Time • Permanent

liz@bornfree.org.uk 01403 240170 Liz Greengrass

Sectors: conservation & wildlife

Closing date: Friday, 25th January 2019   7 days left

Born Free (BF) is a leading wildlife charity, which promotes compassionate conservation to enhance the survival of threatened species in the wild and protect their ecosystems in perpetuity.

BF has country offices in Kenya, Ethiopia and South Africa. Since 2010, Born Free Kenya (BFK) has been working in the Amboseli Ecosystem with the Masai community, reducing predator conflict and retaliatory killings by constructing predator proof bomas and promoting rural development. In 2014, Born Free returned to its roots in the Meru-Kora landscape, where the lion Elsa was released, with the long-term objective of safe-guarding the lion population there. In 2016, it conducted a lion census in collaboration with the Kenya Wildlife Service, and has since established its Pride of Meru Programme, centred on research and protection of the lion population.

We are currently seeking an individual to manage our Pride of Meru Programme. A key part of this role will be to develop and implement lion research and monitoring across the Meru Conservation Area (MCA), a 4,000km2 landscape which includes Meru and Kora National Parks and Bisanadi and Mwingi National Reserves. A longer-term objective is to expand lion monitoring and conservation activities beyond the MCA.

The successful applicant will report to the BFK Country Representative, based in the Nairobi office, but also work closely with the Conservation Team in Kenya and the UK. He/she will be based in the field and liaise with the KWS MCA Management. He/she will directly line manage and provide technical support to the Programmes Officer and other members of the Pride of Meru team. Additional duties will include supporting Born Free teams across Kenya on other carnivore monitoring and conservation duties as and when requested by the Country Representative, and representing Born Free in the MCA.

The position is full-time and involves frequent travel and field work away from base, camping in remote locations with the MCA and beyond. Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  1. Line-manage and support the Programmes Officer and Pride of Meru team.
  2. Take the lead in monitoring the demography, tropic ecology and behaviour of lions; including individual lion identification across the MCA, establishing a long-term lion monitoring scheme.
  3. Implement a system of data storage and management, including large carnivore and prey species data, human-lion conflict and other threats.
  4. Monitor trends in prey abundance.
  5. In Meru: develop citizen science data collection with lodges and park visitors.
  6. In Kora, Bisanadi, Mwingi: develop and implement specific activities to address threats to lions.
  7. Explore work with partners on integrated livestock management.
  8. To collaborate with the Working Group on Wildlife Corridors and Dispersal areas to secure high priority wildlife corridors with the objective of enhancing coexistence between communities and wildlife.
  9. Analyse data, report, and publish in relevant media, in collaboration with Born Free scientists in Kenya and in the UK and relevant collaborators.
  10. Liaise with relevant departments at KWS-MCA, and engage in dialogue with County governments and other stakeholders on threats affecting wildlife, especially in Kora, Bisanadi and Mwingi; and whenever relevant follow up on important points within Born Free Kenya.
  11. Contribute to other work carried out by BFK as required, on education, administration, fundraising, representation and reporting.


  • Postgraduate degree in Natural Resource Management; Conservation biology or Wildlife management;
  • 5-years practical field experience managing wildlife conservation field projects; experience working in this context in Kenya with wildlife conservancies and relevant government agencies is preferred.
  • In-depth understanding of people’s culture and conservation issues in Kenya;
  • Experience in project development, management, analytical and organisational skills including good financial accountability;
  • Experience in analysing ecological and social science data and producing scientific research reports;
  • Proficiency with databases and spreadsheets and data analytical packages such as SPSS, R package and STATA; GIS skills are preferred;
  • Excellent technical report writing skills;
  • A team leader with excellent interpersonal and presentational skills;
  • Ability to build good relationships with the rest of BFK team, partner organisations and external collaborators to drive Born Free’s Kenya strategy.
  • Fluent in English (ability to speak Kiswahili is added advantage)

This is a role with a salary dependent on qualifications and experience and 21 days holiday per annum. This position is based full-time in the Meru Conservation Area with some international travel.

Born Free is an equal opportunities employer.

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