CEPF Conservation project

Project title: “Identifying terrestrial conservation priorities on the island of Anjouan, Comoro Islands and setting up a long-term monitoring system”

In 2015, Dahari received funding from the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) for a period of two and a half years. In Anjouan, there is a lack of ecological data for identifying conservation priorities. Dahari will therefore set up several scientific research projects together with its principal international research partners. Dahari is focussing on the following three areas of research:

(1) Identifying the ecological needs of the two flagship species of Anjouan, Pteropus livingstonii (Livingstone Fruit Bat) and Eulemur Mongoz (Mongoose Lemur). The Dahari team will conduct a count of the fruit bats and lemurs in order to evaluate their populations and distribution. The quality of the species’ habitats will also be evaluated.

(2) Identifyingindicator species of birds, butterflies and reptiles from natural or threatened forest,by analysing data collected by the ECDD project between 2009 and 2012 and from published literature about these species.The team will then carry out more advanced research to compile a full list of species to beresearched in the long term.

 (3) Identifying factors causing the destruction of indigenous forests. Social surveys will be carried out into the use of wood, in order toidentify the quantities, qualities or types of trees that are taken from the forest at Moya,and which are used for firewood, construction, making charcoal and the distillation of ylang-ylang. Detailed mapping of remaining forestand research into the impact of agricultural planting on forest cover will also be set up.

All results will be integrated to create a programme of participatory monitoringwith local communities.

In terms of capitalisation, some research axes will be extended to other islands in the archipelago. These results will also be used to inform conservation policy and practice in the Comoros. The NGO also plans to publish five scientific articles during the course of the project and to train local biologists in different research and data analysis techniques.