27Figure 3.1: Kithimani Sub location, Machakos County 3.2 Research design This research used descriptive research design which is a scientific approach which involves making observations and descriptions of the behavior of a subject without impacting it in any way (Gall, & Borg, 2007). Further, this design is concerned with circumstances, practices, configurations, differences or connections that exist, views held and on-going processes or apparent trends. Descriptive research examines an occurrence which is happening at a specific place and time (Babbie, 2012). This design was useful in that it helped in describing the ecosystem structure, observing the ecosystem restoration Methods and giving the trendsin the livelihood development methods in the research area thus achieving the objectives of the research. However, this design has disadvantages in that majority of studies are not repeatable due to their observational nature and that they are not helpful in identifying cause behind described phenomenon.