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IJSTR >> Volume 6 - Issue 6, June 2017 Edition

International Journal of Scientific & Technology Research  
International Journal of Scientific & Technology Research

Website: http://www.ijstr.org

ISSN 2277-8616

Ecological Niche Modeling For Spatial-Temporal Quantification Of The Changing Dynamics Of Malaria Vector Distribution In Kenya Under Climate Change Forcing

[Full Text]



Jacinta S. Kimuyu, Nzioka J. Muthama, Sammy M. Musyoka





A new study in Kenya has spatially quantified the paradigm shift in the current and future malaria vectors ecology by use of BIOCLIM True or False model with IPCC HADCM3 projected future climate under A2a scenario. The study was designed to correlate the effect of climate change as an explanatory variable, among other factors, on malaria vectors distribution in Kenya. There has been reported malaria cases in new Counties that were never malaria endemic zones, thus the study seeks to research on ecological changes that can be as a result of changing environmental factors to support malaria vectors to thrive in new areas. Predictive modeling was done to investigate the spatial-temporal vector distribution under different IPCC future climate projections. The period from 1950 – 2000 was treated as the current climate scenario to explain where malaria vectors are existing as per vector spatial presence data and the prediction of the ecological niches where the vectors would also be found to thrive. Ecological Niche Modeling demonstrated significant alteration in suitability of malaria vector habitats in Kenya from the current ecological zones by the years 2020, 2050 and 2080. Most of the current malaria ecological niches were found to remain suitable while others turned out to be unsuitable after projection although new malaria hotspots were found to emerge. Prediction by the year 2050 demonstrated an alarming expansion of suitable malaria ecologies. By 2080 the predictions showed that the suitable ecologies will start to revert similar to the earlier suitability as in the current climate. Therefore, climate change in Kenya will adversely affect the environment at an alarming rate by 2050, but beyond that there will be a level of stabilization, where further change will trigger reversal to the past climate. This change in unsuitable to suitable malaria habitats can negatively affect the national effort to fight malaria under the ongoing towards zero campaign if strategic planning overlooks the possible effect of climate change among other factors on future dynamics of malaria distribution in Kenya.



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