Action: Regularly play TV & radio announcements to raise primate conservation awareness
- One before-and-after study in the Republic of Congo found that most reintroduced central chimpanzees whose release was broadcasted by multiple media means, alongside other interventions, survived over five years post-reintroduction.
TV and radio announcements can be used to inform the population and raise their awareness about primate conservation on a more national level. In many developing countries, radio represents the most accessible medium to people in both urban and rural areas. For example, Mathod & Puit (2008) describe how national radio broadcasts in the Republic of Congo is used to regularly (twice a week) broadcast announcements that highlight the importance of great apes and their status as protected species in three different languages. In addition to the radio broadcast, four films were regularly shown on television. These programmes produced by the national channel ‘TV Congo’, showcased the activities connected with gorilla reintroduction, the management of the Lésio-Louna Reserve, the protected status of great apes, and the issues associated with the trafficking of these species.
Mathot L., & Puit M. (2008) Educational activities in the Republic of Congo. Gorilla Journal, 36, 20–22.
Supporting evidence from individual studies
A before-and-after study in 1994-1999 in tropical forest in Conkouati-Douli National Park, Republic of Congo found that the majority of reintroduced central chimpanzees Pan troglodytes troglodytes whose release was broadcasted using various media instruments alongside 16 other interventions, survived over five years. Out of 20 reintroduced chimpanzees, 14 (70%) survived over five years. No statistical tests were carried out to determine whether the decrease was significant. Their release was broadcasted on TV and several illustrated newspaper articles, aiming at raising awareness towards chimpanzee conservation. Individuals were radio-collared and followed at distances of 5-100 m. Rehabilitated orphaned chimpanzees underwent vaccination, parasite treatment and veterinary screens before translocation in four subgroups to habitat where resident chimpanzees occurred. Staff members were permanently present during to monitor primate health, provide additional food if necessary and examine any dead animals. The area status was upgraded from reserve to national park in 1999. Local people were relocated from the release site to a nearby village. Some chimpanzees were treated when sick or injured. Local people were provided monetary and non-monetary benefits in exchange for their conservation support. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.