Habitat Restoration and Ecotourism for Chimpanzees, Uganda

The Bulindi Chimpanzee and Community Project aims to conserve the highly threatened populations of wild chimpanzees living in unprotected, rapidly disappearing  habitat alongside poor, rural farmers in Western Uganda’s critical Budongo-Bugoma corridor landscape.

 
photo credit Jacqueline Rohen
photo credit Jacqueline Rohen

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The Project

Western Uganda’s Hoima district is dominated by village and agricultural land but small forests occur along watercourses and valleys throughout the 1000 km2 region. These unprotected forests are owned by local village households and provide critical habitat for a population of 300 wild chimpanzees, as well as other primates including black and white colobus, vervets, baboons, and the endangered Ugandan mangabey. Hoima’s small forests have additional conservation value as a wildlife corridor linking two large protected areas to the north and south. The area is threatened by unregulated tourism, pressure for development, and agricultural expansion. The removal of forest leads to crop-raiding by chimpanzees, which are then trapped or killed. For many households the forest is their only source of income. This project will work with local communities to develop local livelihood alternatives from sustainable ecotourism alongside woodlots and ‘chimp friendly’ coffee farming to reduce pressure on natural forest. Tree nurseries will be established and 200,000 coffee trees, 200,000 native species for enrichment planting, and 200,000 fast-growing exotics for woodlots, will be grown. A thorough biodiversity survey will be conducted, guidelines for best practice ecotourism and visitor enhancement will be drawn up, 150 energy-saving stoves will be constructed, and there will be local educational outreach for schoolchildren and adults.
 
photo credit Matthew McLennan
photo credit Matthew McLennan
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If you are an individual who loves the great outdoors and would like to support our projects, please click the donate button below. During 2017, all money donated will fund tree planting in Nepal as part of our 2 Million Tree Project.
We are hugely grateful for the support of the European Outdoor Conservation Association, without whose support we could never have realised such an ambitious project.
Hugo Tagholm, Surfers Against Sewage