Study

Using technology to save gorillas in the Mbe Mountains

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Implement monitoring surveillance strategies (e.g. SMART) or use monitoring data to improve effectiveness of wildlife law enforcement patrols

Action Link
Primate Conservation

Implement community control of patrolling, banning hunting and removing snares

Action Link
Primate Conservation
  1. Implement monitoring surveillance strategies (e.g. SMART) or use monitoring data to improve effectiveness of wildlife law enforcement patrols

    A before-and-after trial in 2009-2013 in tropical forest in the Mbe Mountains, Nigeria found that more Cross River gorilla Gorilla gorilla diehli and Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee Pan troglodytes ellioti groups were observed after the implementation of a system for law enforcement and monitoring. The number of observed gorilla groups and sleeping nests increased from 4 to 22 groups and from 29 to 80 nests. The number of chimpanzee groups and sleeping nests increased from 4 to 15 groups and 3 to 53 nests. The number of patrol days increased from 343 to 830 days, and patrol effort increased from 1,500 to 5,000 km/year. Encounter rates of wire snares, gunshots heard, used cartridges, and hunting camps, decreased from 1.3 to 0.27/km, 0.45 to 0.02/km, 1.56 to 0.08/km, and 0.05 to 0.002/km, respectively. No statistical tests were carried out to determine whether this difference was significant. The system used the Cyber Tracker software run on handheld computers with GPS capabilities for field data collection. Data collected with this system can be downloaded directly to computers and quickly analysed allowing timely production of feedback for patrol planning and implementation.

  2. Implement community control of patrolling, banning hunting and removing snares

    A site comparison in 1983-2013 in tropical forest in the Cross River area, Nigeria found that Cross River gorilla Gorilla gorilla diehli and Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee Pan troglodytes ellioti densities were higher in the Mbe Mountains, a site managed by a community conservation association than in adjacent sites (Afi Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary and the Cross River National Park) which were not managed by local communities. Furthermore, levels of wildlife hunting in the Mbe Mountains were relatively low compared to the other two sites and no reports of hunting of either gorilla or chimpanzees had been reported over 30 years. However, no figures were provided and no statistical tests were carried out to determine whether this difference was significant. At Mbe Mountains there was strong community support for conservation, As part of the community programme, 13 trained eco-guards regularly carry out anti-poaching and monitoring patrols in the area.

Output references

What Works in Conservation

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