Monday, 17 July 2017
Categories Great Apes
The Rwanda Development Board’s (RDB) decision to double price of Rwanda gorilla permits from USD 750 to USD1500 has been received with mixed feelings from local and international tour operators, conservationists and also the people of Rwanda. Many looked at the gorilla permits increase as a gamble that is bound to fail in the near future and killing the tour businesses. Rwanda has been selling gorilla permits higher than Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and a decision to double these already higher prices looks like Rwanda is becoming too ambitious and greedy?
Nonhuman primates, our closest biological relatives, play important roles in the livelihoods, cultures, and religions of many societies and offer unique insights into human evolution, biology, behavior, and the threat of emerging diseases. They are an essential component of tropical biodiversity, contributing to forest regeneration and ecosystem health. Current information shows the existence of 504 species in 79 genera distributed in the Neotropics, mainland Africa, Madagascar, and Asia. Alarmingly, ~60% of primate species are now threatened with extinction and ~75% have declining populations.
The first documented evidence of wild chimpanzee mothers teaching their offspring to use tools has been captured by video cameras set to record chimpanzee tool-using activity at termite mounds in the Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park in the Republic of Congo, according to new research from anthropologists at Washington University in St. Louis.
The German foundation KfW Stiftung has split the environmental award KfW-Bernhard-Grzimek-Preis 2015 and the prize money of 50,000 euros, awarding one half to Emmanuel de Merode, director of Virunga National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the other half to the scientist and economist Pavan Sukhdev.
The number of gorillas and chimpanzees in Central Africa continues to decline due to hunting, habitat loss, and disease, combined with a widespread lack of law enforcement and corruption in the judicial process, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Wildlife Conservation Society, WWF, and partners in a new conservation plan.
Wednesday, 15 October 2014
Categories Great Apes
After 10 years of conservation action and preparations, Prime Minister of Cameroon Philémon Yang has signed a Decree to officially create Tofala Hill Wildlife Sanctuary in South West Cameroon. Besides the critically endangered Cross River gorilla, this landscape is also home to the most endangered African chimpanzee and other endangered wildlife, such as the Drill and elephants. Great apes and other wildlife species are under pressure from hunting and the bushmeat trade, as well as habitat loss due to human encroachment. Indirect causes include local poverty and the absence of a regulated law enforcement system.
Virunga National Park’s conservationists and activists are celebrating a victory today after British oil company SOCO International plc (SOCO) agreed to end its controversial operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). But the devil is in the details and many believe the war against drilling for oil in Africa’s oldest national park has just begun.
Tuesday, 22 October 2013
Categories Great Apes
The Aspinall Foundation's reintroduction of western lowland gorillas to areas of Africa where they have been hunted to extinction appears to be working, according to a scientific study published today in the international conservation journal Oryx. Western lowland gorillas are classified by the World Conservation Union as Critically Endangered, based on a projected 80% decline in the wild over just three generations, ranking them alongside the most threatened species on the planet. Reintroduction of gorillas to protected areas from where they have previously been exterminated is still considered controversial, but a pioneering, long-term programme to do just that is starting to show it may be possible after all.
An estimated 9 600 forest elephants still reside in Odzala-Kokoua National Park in Republic of Congo, according to the results of a wildlife census commissioned by African Parks in 2012, but just released. Whilst higher than expected, this healthy number is believed to be a result of compression, with elephants fleeing highly poached areas outside the park and moving into the safety of the centre of Odzala.
RUMANGABO, DR Congo -- After almost twenty years of armed conflict in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Virunga National Park today released the details of a 10-year plan to re-invigorate the local economy and create tens of thousands of new jobs as a peace-building initiative in the conflict affected areas of eastern Congo. The plan, referred to as "the Virunga Alliance" will vastly increase the availability of clean energy for rural communities through large scale investment in a network of off-grid hydro-electric plants and associated agro-industrial development.
World Wide Fund for Nature - UK (WWF-UK) filed a complaint with the UK government today. The complaint concerns SOCO International's failure to seek to prevent human rights abuses and carry out comprehensive human rights and environmental studies for its proposed oil exploration in Virunga National Park, Democratic Republic of Congo, in violation of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (OECD Guidelines).
From acclaimed author and renowned journalist Deni Béchard, Empty Hands, Open Arms is a poignant first-hand account of the work of a small NGO, The Bonobo Conservation Initiative (BCI), and their efforts to save the last living bonobos and the Congolese rainforest they call home is altogether environmental, political, historical, and anthropological—what Kirkus Reviews' deems "a rich, complex account."
Monday, 29 July 2013
Categories Great Apes
Volunteers from all over the world are working hand in hand with Cameroonian conservationists to save Cross River gorillas and chimpanzees from extinction. In total six new protected areas will be established to protect vital habitat. The reserves will give much-needed protection to some of the world's most endangered species.
The Word Wildlife Fund (WWF) calls on the Congolese government to enforce laws that prohibit the oil exploitation in protected areas. René Ngongo, WWF coordinator in the DRC, denounced the license for the exploitation of oil in Virunga National Park, which was awarded to the British company SOCO International.
In Cameroon, populations of Cross River gorillas can be found in the Lebialem Highlands: a biodiversity hotspot in one of the wettest places on earth. A new cluster of protected areas will protect Cross River Gorillas and an important watershed for the benefit of all Cameroonians.