See also:
» 17.03.2011 - Congo halts oil exploration in Virunga Park
» 09.03.2011 - Large-scale logging underway in DR Congo
» 01.07.2010 - Central African bushmeat hits European market
» 04.06.2010 - Congo gorilla babies prepared for new airlift
» 16.12.2009 - DRC conservation initiative receives international recognition
» 20.10.2009 - DRC and Morocco elected to new forest financing programme
» 04.08.2009 - World bank signs first biocarbon agreement in DRC
» 21.05.2009 - Congo Basin forest management "successful"

China wholesale online through

Houlihan's coupons

Finn autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden på
Gazpacho Børek Kartoffelsalat Taboulé Gulasj Albóndigas Cevapi Rougaille Japrak sarma Zwiebelbrot Klopse Giouvetsi Paella Pljeskavica Pica pau Pulpo a la gallega Flammkuchen Langosj Tapenade Chatsjapuri Pasulj Lassi Kartoffelpuffer Tortilla Raznjici Knödel Lentejas Bœuf bourguignon Korianderchutney Brenneslesuppe Proia Sæbsi kavurma Sardinske calamares

Autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden finner du på
Réunion Portugal Aserbajdsjan Serbia Tyskland Seychellene Bosnia Spania Libanon Belgia India Kroatia Hellas Italia Ungarn Komorene Georgia Mauritius Østerrike Romania Frankrike

Congo Kinshasa
Environment - Nature

Congo's pygmy chimpanzee threatened

afrol News, 9 December - Pygmy chimpanzees or bonobos may have been hunted so extensively that the survival of the species is at risk, environmentalists are warning. The bonobos are said to be our closest relative, and are found only in the heart of Africa's Congo Basin. A survey suggests there are very few bonobos still alive.

The bonobo is much less widespread than the closely related and better known chimpanzee. It lives in a few refuges in Congo Kinshasa (DRC) just south of the Congo River - in a mix of forest, swamp and grassland habitats - and is considered one of the most endangered apes in the world. Scientists had estimated the bonobo population to be perhaps as high as 50,000.

However, preliminary results of the first systematic survey of a known bonobo stronghold indicate that may be an over-estimation. The survey was conducted in the 36,000 km2 Salonga National Park in central Congo Kinshasa, a protected area the size of Holland.

The first data in from about a third of the park shows evidence of very few bonobos living there. No bonobos were encountered, and sightings of nests and dung were only made in a quarter of the area surveyed, at lower densities than previously measured, according to reports from the environmentalist group WWF.

In contrast, there was abundant evidence of human encroachment into the park and of poaching. WWF today stated it hoped to be able to establish a clearer picture of how many bonobos are left in the wild once all of the results of the survey have been compiled and analysed early next year.

- These initial results concern us greatly, said Peter Stephenson of WWF's African Great Apes Programme. "Salonga National Park was created in 1970 specifically to safeguard the species and potentially represents the largest, undisturbed and protected habitat for the bonobo. If things are this bad here, we can assume that across the Congo, bonobos are in crisis," he added.

The survey of Salonga National Park was undertaken by the Congolese Institute for Nature Conservation (ICCN) and the Wildlife Conservation Society and supported by WWF. It was conducted as part of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) programme for Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE). As with the bonobo estimates, the survey recorded lower elephant numbers than expected.

During the long running civil war in Congo Kinshasa, it became almost impossible for ICCN to protect effectively the country's national parks. Increased poaching by armed militias and local people was inevitable with serious consequences for the bonobos of Salonga as well as the local people.

- WWF has now launched a new project to monitor and protect surviving bonobo populations in the northern sector of Salonga National Park, the group today announced. It is providing park staff and researchers with training and equipment as well as supporting anti-poaching operations on foot and by boat to stop the illegal killing of the rare apes.

The project to protect the park's bonobo population is being implemented by ICCN and the Zoological Society of Milwaukee (USA) in partnership with WWF's Salonga Landscape Programme. "The war has had terrible consequences for the people and wildlife of the Congo Basin," said Lisa Steel, coordinator of WWF's Salonga Landscape Programme.

- However, now, as the Democratic Republic of Congo rebuilds socially and economically, the opportunity is there to make sure that forest conservation benefits not only wildlife but also local people, Ms Steel added.

- Create an e-mail alert for Congo Kinshasa news
- Create an e-mail alert for Environment - Nature news

    Printable version

On the Afrol News front page now

Rwanda succeeds including citizens in formal financial sector

afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.

Famine warning: "South Sudan is imploding"

afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
Panic in West Africa after Ebola outbreak in Guinea

afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
Ethiopia tightens its already strict anti-gay laws

afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
Ethiopia plans Africa's biggest dam

afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.

front page | news | countries | archive | currencies | news alerts login | about afrol News | contact | advertise | español 

©  afrol News. Reproducing or buying afrol News' articles.

   You can contact us at