Workgroup Endangered Species Conservation


Field Studies in Conservation Biology: 'Biological and Human Dimensions of Wildlife Conservation in Cameroon 2018'

The Gulf of Guinea Forests in Cameroon and Nigeria constitute the largest remaining continuous rainforests within the West African biodiversity hotspot 'Guinean Forests of West Africa', ranging from Sierra Leone to western Cameroon. In this region, we can visit traditional agroforestry landscapes as well as protected areas. Numerous initiatives for nature conservation and development are in place in Cameroon which experiences we can learn from. In the region, solutions both for biodiversity and people are sought in order to meet the social, cultural, economic and ecological complexity of human-environment relations of these rural forest regions.

More recently, the region is threatened by a new development that could lead to massive landscape changes: The palm oil industry explores increasingly investment potential and begins to plan and establish large-scaled industrial plantations in this ecologically and socially sensitive region.

In 2018, we will visit our long term focal regions, the South West Region of Cameroon with its lowland protected areas, still largely being intact forest landscapes. We also plan to cross the river Sanaga into the Congolian rainforest region and visit the Dja reserve in South Cameroon

The participants will learn about current conservation issues in and around protected areas from stakeholders. Various conservation actors will be visited to gain impressions of their work, to have talks and hold joint workshops. These actors include the local population (such as hunters and farmers of the village Ikondo kondo I), the national park administration, the development cooperation organization PSMNR-SWR (Program for Sustainable Management of Natural Resources, South West Region Cameroon (GIZ/KfW program in collaboration with the Cameroonian Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife), international (WWF, WCS) and local NGOs (Korup Rainforest Conservation Society KRCS, Limbe Wildlife Center LWC), as well as a few research projects (camera trapping, Ebo Forest project) and the palm oil industry (PAMOL Plantation Plc).

The second excursion focus is on increasing knowledge on the biodiversity of the region (endemic primates and other mammals, birdlife, tree diversity and ethnobotany) and associated survey methodology (including line transects, point counts, vegetation plots, distance sampling, GPS navigation) by multi-day stays inside the reserves.

We will also visit research institutions and organise an exchange with researchers and students. The HIES (Higher Institute of Environmental Sciences) is a new and innovative cooperation between Cameroonian universities, the UCLA (University of California, L.A.) and the University of Gent. Besides B.Sc., M.Sc. and Ph.D. programmes in environmental sciences, it also provides networking opportunities and further education trainings for conservation actors. The CBI (Congo Basin Institute) is a well-established institution of the UCLA and IITA (International Institute if Tropical Agriculture), which focuses on applied conservation research and provides an excellent research environment to local scientists.

Examination procedures
Every participant will give a presentation on a self-chosen conservation topic related to the excursion contents. The group of participants will prepare a joint excursion report, analyzing data from their field trips to Korup and Dja, and reflecting on conservation issues in Cameroon. This report will also be provided to the cooperation partners in Cameroon.

Information meeting:
Wednesday, 25.10.2017, 4.15 p.m.
Room 2.102, Conservation Biology, Bürgerstraße 50


PD Dr. Matthias Waltert
Conservation Biology/Workgroup Endangered Species Conservation
Johann-Friedrich-Blumenbach-Institut für Zoologie
Bürgerstraße 50, 37073 Göttingen

Denis Kupsch
Conservation Biology/Workgroup Endangered Species Conservation
Johann-Friedrich-Blumenbach-Institut für Zoologie
Bürgerstraße 50, 37073 Göttingen

Wild Cat Conservation and Research

New mentoring program in conservation of wild felids for students at M.Sc and PhD level

for more info (pdf file) click here