In 2011, after three years of planning and hard work, the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) successfully secured the land necessary to expand the Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center (TCRC), JGI’s chimpanzee sanctuary in the Republic of the Congo. JGI intends to expand the sanctuary by building supplementary facilities on three islands in the nearby Kouilou River. The islands will offer the chimpanzees a much larger, natural setting where they can learn, grow and build social bonds in a secure environment.
Background / Issues:
Every year poachers in the Congo Basin kill thousands of chimpanzees as part of the illegal bushmeat trade. Typically, the hunters spare the lives of the smallest, confiscating them and selling them as pets despite laws forbidding such trade.
The overarching goal of the Gombe-Masito-Ugalla (GMU) Program is to conserve biodiversity and protect and restore wildlife habitat in critical ecosystems in western Tanzania.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced September 1, 2011, that the agency will begin reviewing the status of chimpanzees under the Endangered Species Act. The review process ultimately will determine whether the U.S. government provides the same level of protection for chimpanzees that are captive in the United States as it does for wild chimpanzees.
Through the hard work and determination of the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) staff, and thanks to United States Fish and Wildlife Services (USFWS), the Congolese government and supporters like you, the expansion of the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve is a reality.
In the spring of 2011, the Congolese government ratified a decree to expand the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve (TNR) by 750 percent. JGI's Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center, the largest chimpanzee sanctuary in Africa, lies within the current boundaries of the TNR.
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.
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.
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.