Archive for the Africa: Primates Category

Organization of The Day: Gorilla Doctors

Posted in Africa: Primates, Organization of The Day, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 23, 2010 by Dori G

Today only 720 Mountain Gorillas populate the earth, and in only two parks (Uganda/Rwanda, and Democratic Republic of Congo). Dr. Dian Fossey founded what was originally called the Volcano Veterinarian Center in 1986. After studying Gorilla’s behavior and interaction with their environment she discovered that their population was declining rapidly, likely due to their interactions with humans. She decided to start a Veterinarian project dedicated to the Gorillas. Sadly she did not live to see the success, but today the project is known as Gorilla Doctors.

After years of research, scientists found that the secret to saving the lives of these animals existed within medical care. The largest threat facing these animals is disease, contracted through interaction with humans, other animals, and factors of their environment. Their research has found that people, mountain gorillas, and cattle share genetically identical intestinal pathogens, making them susceptible to diseases.

The Gorilla Doctors are a team of highly talented vets who intervene when needed and help nurse the Gorillas back to health. Seeing as the health of the Gorillas depends on the health of the people interacting with them, Gorilla Doctors also provide health care for their employees. Within the last ten years they have been able to increase the population of the Mountain Gorillas by 17%, and only hope to increase that number. These veterinarians are fully dedicated to their research, which has been groundbreaking, and to the survival of these precious gentle giants.

To learn more, please click here…..

Organization of The Day: WildlifeNOW

Posted in Africa: Elephants, Africa: Lions, Africa: Primates, Africa: Rhinos, Organization of The Day with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 22, 2010 by kendickjerkins

WildlifeNOW

George Adamson was a legendary figure in the world of wildlife. He devoted his life to his many lions that he was able to reintroduce into the wild, becoming the infamous ‘lion man.’ In 1989, George Adamson’s life ended devastatingly, murdered by a group of Somali Bandits. Fortunately, his legacy lives on through Tony Fitzjohn, who spent nearly 18 years with Adamson learning all the tricks of the trade from building roads to organizing anti-poaching units. Together this dynamic duo created Kora National Park, encompassing 1200 square miles of land that lays adjacent to Tsavo National Park (Kenya’s largest National Park), creating a massive amount of landscape dedicated to protection and preservation.

These two extraordinary men also fought many battles against bandits and poachers, created airstrips, cut more than 300 miles of bush roads and reintroduced more than 30 lions and 10 leopards back into the wild. Today, Fitzjohn carries on the spirit of Adamson as his protégé. Recently, WildlifeNOW focuses its efforts on the highly endangered rhinos, African Wild Dogs, and elephants. Their accomplishments consist of establishing the first successful rhino sanctuary in Tanzania which is now a highly patrolled, 30 square mile sanctuary. Their veterinary program has made groundbreaking progress in the research of diseases, hoping to one day contribute to immunizations of the African Wild Dogs. After a devastating decrease in population of elephants, WildlifeNOW has around 1,000 elephants roaming the reserve in the wet season.

Additionally, for the past three decades WildlifeNOW has been successful in reintroducing zoo animals back into the wild. Tanzania, being one of the poorest countries, has hunted wildlife for the survival of themselves and their families. To help local communities WildlifeNOW has created an outreach program so that the surrounding villages benefit from the reserve. Their outreach program has provided medical assistance, funded the building of a secondary school, improved water supplies and much more. Their goal is not only to sustain wildlife, but to reverse the damage that has been done. Tony Fitzjohn has spent a lot of time traveling the world, educating the public on issues of wildlife preservation. However, he is now moving back to Kora, where he and Adamson started their magnificent journey, to bring the area back to life and re-introduce more lions into the wild.

To learn more, please visit their website

Organization of The Day: Lewa Conservancy

Posted in Africa: Elephants, Africa: Lions, Africa: Primates, Africa: Rhinos, Organization of The Day with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2010 by kendickjerkins

 

Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

During the 1970s population of black rhinos had dropped from 20,000 to fewer than 300, putting these animals in danger of becoming extinct. Since then, thanks to the Lewa Conservancy, over 40,000 acres has been dedicated to over 70 different animals. Since the 1970s Lewa has been able to double the population of rhinos! Lewa also lends a helping hand to the surrounding communities.

Their annual safaricom marathon has helped raise over 2,000,000, they have been able to build over 10 schools, establish forestry programs, support hospitals, provide free treatment to those injured by wildlife, as well as put projects in place such as tracker dog units to help the conservancy. They have even started a womens micro-credit program. The surrounding communities are impoverished and this program gives these women a chance to become more independent. They are given the chance to train and become entrepreneurs, hoping to reduce poverty and facilitate gender equity. Lewa’s efforts not only help out the animals in need, but the people as well.

To Learn More, please visit their site

Bushmeat Crisis: Groundbreaking Rescue Mission Between Interpol & UN Rescuing Gorillas in Congo

Posted in Africa: Primates on June 11, 2010 by kendickjerkins

UN Peacekeepers in DR Congo are planning a new gorilla rescue airlift next month, which will take six babies seized from poachers to a sanctuary in North Kivu. The airlift sparks calls for stronger control in Congo Basin forests. The rescue is being carried out amid concerns for the future of the endangered species and recommendations by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and INTERPOL to strengthen the capacity of the UN peacekeeping mission and law enforcement bodies to combat cross-border environmental crime in the Congo Basin and gorilla range states.

The operation, planned for mid-July, is the second to be conducted by UN forces in Congo Kinshasa (DRC) as part of a wider effort to combat the illegal cross-border trade in baby gorillas, which has intensified in recent years with the proliferation of armed groups in the region. The second airlift will involve transporting another six babies to the same sanctuary. Together, the orphaned gorillas are hoped to form a new “family” of ten. The ultimate objective is to rehabilitate the gorillas and to reintroduce them back in their natural environment.

The unfortunate victims of war

To read the full article, click here

Organization of The Day: The Mara Conservancy

Posted in Africa: Elephants, Africa: Lions, Africa: Primates, Africa: Rhinos, Organization of The Day with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 10, 2010 by kendickjerkins

Mara Conservancy


Management of the Mara Triangle was falling apart, until 2001, when Mara Conservancy stepped in and took control over the triangle. Their programs include anti-poaching and de-snaring patrols, as well as a mobile veterinary unit that is always on the move. These units help animals that have been snared by cutting wires and treating open wounds, giving the animals a chance to survive.

The help of the conservancy extends to surrounding communities creating a ripple effect that in turn helps protect wildlife. They have started a project that brings bio-gas to surrounding homes. Bio gas reduces smoke within homes, preventing women from having to search for wood. Because of this, the depletion of surrounding forests is reduced as well as human-wildlife conflict, an obstacle that faces many conservationists.

Additionally, they’ve brought toilets to 5 villages and plan to construct more. Female genital mutilation is a huge problem in surrounding communities and Mara has educated them in hopes to stop the mutilation. They’ve also reduced revenge killing of predators by giving livestock guardians and replacing the livestock when possible. With the reduction of revenge killing, better patrol of the area, veterinarians in place and their efforts in reaching out to the community Mara Conservancy has taken huge strides in the protection of wildlife.

To Learn More about the Conservancy & the Mara Triangle, click here.

UN Helicopters Successfully Rescue Baby Gorillas

Posted in Africa: Primates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 30, 2010 by kendickjerkins

UN peacekeepers from the Congo have successfully airlifted endangered baby gorillas out of the conflict zone where they were rescued.  The four babies were flown from the conflict zone in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the Kasugho Sanctuary in the North Kaivu province on Tuesday.  Six other gorillas are to be flown into the sanctuary on June 10 in an attempt to help the the other four form a sustainable, viable population back in their natural habitat.  The illegal trade in bush meat and live baby gorillas has been a boon to local militant groups, and this rescue mission is hoped to be a first step in both saving the gorillas and helping to stop the war.

Human conflict in Congo is constantly claiming casualties

A gorilla mother and her baby.

Baby gorilla rescued from Illegal trafficker

To read the full article about the air lift click here

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With the Help of Outside Money, Locals and Apes Have Finally Reached an Agreement

Posted in Africa: Primates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 29, 2010 by kendickjerkins

In Uganda the conflict between apes and humans is one that causes one species to win at the cost of the other, and the loser is almost always the apes.  Recently, however, farmers in Kyamalera have learned to coexist with our closest relatives.  Apes, which used to be thought of as a commodity for bushmeat and the pet trade, are no longer just thought of as a source for poaching.  The tourism trade has bolstered the local economy by enabling locals to sell crafts and locally grown goods to the influx of outsiders with money.  The Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust has given these farmers start up money to begin making crafts to sell instead of poaching as a means of subsistence.  In Hoima where most of the forests are privately owned, organizations such as the Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust have been giving money to 84 different private owners of the forests to provide them with an alternative means of survival that does not require encroachment into the forest.

A dead chimpanzee lying on the forest floor.

An example of local crafts that can be found in Uganda.  With the influx of support, local farmers are able to sell goods such as these rather than poaching the great apes.

A bushmeat market where most poached animals are sold so that local citizens can survive.

To read the full article click here

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