The forests of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo are one of the most globally important regions for biodiversity. The Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) with support from the Arcus Foundation and The World We Want Foundation is leading a conservation action planning (CAP) process in the region.
Building on its experience working in Uganda since 1996, JGI, in partnership with the Ugandan National Forest Authority (NFA), launched the Budongo ecotourism project in 2006 with funding from the American people through the United States Agency for International Development. The goal of the project was to provide sustainable revenue generating opportunities from ecotourism to support the protection and maintenance of Budongo.
The Jane Goodall Institute’s (JGI) Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center (TCRC) is primarily a chimpanzee sanctuary. But try telling that to our eight mandrills! In her blog entry, JGI technical advisor Debby Cox reports from Tchimpounga about the mandrills.
Participatory mapping plays an essential role in JGI conservation initiatives, recording local perspectives and knowledge of landscapes and land uses and values. Through this process the complex interrelations between people and the places they live are brought to life in a view that incorporates socio-economic perspectives along with ecological ones. The common understanding that results allows communities to plan more effectively and take precious natural resources and habitats into consideration.
JGI’s Applied Conservation Science Program provides the detailed census data that is essential to conservation planning and assessment. To be effective, the conservation community needs to know the distribution, status and trends of great ape populations. Identification of human threats in specific landscapes is also critical.
Clearing of forests and woodlands has one of the most devastating impacts on great apes, leaving them in isolated, small populations that face edge effects and elevated risk of extinction. Satellite imagery and GIS are powerful tools to monitor chimpanzee habitats and threats even in the most remote, difficult to access areas. JGI has been a leader in applying multi-temporal, multi-resolution satellite imagery to map and detect change in the distribution of chimpanzee habitats in Africa from local to regional scales.
Inclusion of human land uses is essential to effective conservation planning. Human land use not only triggers environmental impacts that must be taken into account but also drives an understanding of the important local needs met by the surrounding ecosystems. The resulting insights uncover the value of conservation to sustain and enhance livelihoods in local communities.
Local communities are the stewards of their environment and their participation is essential to mapping and monitoring the natural resources on their village lands. The Jane Goodall Institute's (JGI) community-based conservation approach is designed to empower local stewards in ways that benefit communities, as well as the environment that surrounds them. JGI has become a pioneer and leader in this emerging field as a result of our rapid adoption of new technologies to support community forest monitoring.
Bill Wallauer, JGI wildlife cameraman and research videographer, celebrates the birthday of Gombe National Park’s Ferdinand.
Ferdinand, the alpha male of the Kasakela chimpanzee community in Gombe National Park, Tanzania, turned 19 years old last Friday, August 19, 2011.
Regardless of where I am in the world, I celebrate Ferdinand’s birthday every year. Last Friday was not only the day that brought Ferdinand into the world, it was also the day I was able to film the first great ape birth ever recorded in the wild.