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Knowledge, attitudes and practices of water users that affect water resource use in lower thiba sub-catchment, Kenya

Wangechi Sarah Wagatwe, Mutembei Henry M’Ikiugu, Kironchi Geofffrey

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.19(5), 78-87, November 2021

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Abstract

Water resource in Lower Thiba Sub-catchment is important as over 70% of the population in the area rely on it for irrigation among other uses. This study was carried out to establish the knowledge, attitudes and practices of the community affecting its use. Data was collected from 361 households (n=361) within the sub-catchment. For ease of survey and for homogeneity, the sub-catchment was sub-divided into three zones namely; upper, mid and lower zones, from each a sample of 120 respondents was randomly sampled (n=120) using a transect line survey of every 5th household. Data was analysed using Social Science Statistical Package version 20 and presented using descriptive statistics. The results showed that 83% (P≤0.01) of the respondents practiced good water use practices with water recycling at (69%). Though 93% of the respondents used agrochemicals, (81%(P≤0.01) of them applied agronomic practices that are meant to conserve soil water as follows; mulching (41%), mixed cropping (18%) and reduced frequencies of irrigation (16%). Respondents (57%(P≤0.01) felt the main threat to water resource is degradation of the water source areas, with 22% feeling pollution of water is a major threat, while (12%) felt that climate change is a major threat. From the findings of this research, it is recommended that policy on water resource management and use should not only be based on the need to improve quantity and quality of water, but also the need to address the challenges arising from lack of awareness and negative community attitudes and practices.

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Knowledge, attitudes and practices of water users that affect water resource use in lower thiba sub-catchment, Kenya

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