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Aspinall Foundation

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What We Do

Aspinall Foundation working with local community associations.

Aspinall Foundation working with local community associations.

In Madagascar, the Aspinall Foundation implements effective, targeted conservation programs to protect a small number of high priority lemur species, including Greater Bamboo lemurs, Black-and-white Ruffed lemurs and Indri. We partner with local communities to address the conservation of both the species themselves and their habitat. The Aspinall Foundation has worked in both the eastern rainforests and the western dry forests of Madagascar.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Our work has been key to helping save several Critically Endangered lemur species from extinction, by using effective, targeted conservation actions on a small number of high priority lemur species.

Habitat protection is key to the foundation’s work, and is integrated into many of our programs through our innovative partnerships with local community organizations.

Additionally, data collected by the Aspinall Foundation helps guide environmental policy. This has ensured that Black-and-white ruffed lemurs are now recognized as a priority species by Malagasy authorities. The information collected has shown how endangered these target species are. If we hadn’t collected this data it would be hard to get an accurate estimate of population sizes and threats against the species.

What Lemur Species We Protect

The programs implemented by The Aspinall Foundation have been helping to protect the following species:

An Indri (Indri indri), copyright Tony King Aspinall Foundation

  • Black-and-white ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata)
  • Crowned sifaka (Propithecus coronatus)
  • Diademed sifaka (Propithecus diadema)
  • Mongoose lemur (Eulemur mongoz)
  • Greater bamboo lemurs (Prolemur simus)
  • Indri (Indri indri)

Greater Bamboo Lemurs (Prolemur simus)

Since 2008, the Aspinall Foundation has been working in eastern Madagascar to save greater bamboo lemurs, one of the rarest primates in the world. Thanks to their work, they have been able to discover new populations of this species, implement community-based conservation projects at ten new sites, and create the first-ever, community-managed site designed specifically to protect greater bamboo lemurs. At this community-managed site, they monitor over 30 lemur groups and 500 individuals on a weekly basis, which have helped remove greater bamboo lemurs from the 25-most-endangered primates list!

Black-and-White Ruffed Lemurs (Varecia variegata)

Since 2013, the Aspinall Foundation has been working in eastern Madagascar with conservation programming targeted at saving black-and-white ruffed lemurs. Thanks to their efforts, three new populations of the species have been discovered! Two populations of black-and-white ruffed lemurs are now protected and monitored annually.

The Aspinall Foundation plans to continue working to protect this species throughout its range and to develop conservation programs that help ensure its long-term survival.

How We Support Local Communities

Reforestation project.

One of the reforestation projects managed by The Aspinall Foundation.

Partnering with local communities

The Aspinall Foundation has a long-term commitment to the community. All of Aspinall’s projects are community-based and support the local community associations that conserve the local forest habitats identified as priority sites for target lemur species. Our work builds the capacity of these communities so that they can conserve their forests and local lemur populations for many years to come.

The Aspinall Foundation partners with local communities at every project site.

  • We partnered with six local community associations and one private land-owner in eastern Madagascar to save the greater bamboo lemur
  • Since 2010, we supported three local community associations in eastern Madagascar (Andriantantely) and hired over 15 rangers to monitor and protect lemurs and their habitats
  • In Andriantantely, our work is supported by a community-based management agreement that sets the foundation for local communities to manage their own forests sustainably
Lemur notebook distribution by Lucien Randrianarimanana.

Lemur notebook distribution by Lucien Randrianarimanana.

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SEED Madagascar

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SEED Madagascar

What We Do

SEED Madagascar's Conservation Programme team.

SEED Madagascar’s Conservation Programme team.

The work we do is focused on conservation research and social development. Our mission is to alleviate poverty and conserve the unique, biologically rich, and greatly endangered forest environments in southeast Madagascar. We help to empower the region’s poorest people to establish sustainable livelihoods for themselves and improve their well being.

SEED Madagascar’s Conservation Program implements a broad range of lemur projects that conserve the lemurs of Sainte Luce and ensure their long-term survival within their natural habitat.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Conducting Research to Preserve Sainte Luce Habitat

The littoral forests of Sainte Luce have been declared a conservation priority within a globally recognized biodiversity hotspot, making conservation here essential. Additionally, this habitat has been earmarked for future mining projects which may threaten the lemur populations, as well as other unique wildlife in the region. SEED Madagascar has been researching the lemurs, bats, amphibians and reptiles, as well as plants, restricted to the littoral forest fragments of Sainte Luce.

Our research estimates the population densities of the impacted species and calculates whether remaining habitats will be enough to support these populations. SEED Madagascar publishes research which directly contributes to wildlife conservation projects in the area.

Nocturnal Lemur Research

Our current focus is monitoring the population size and distribution of the three nocturnal lemur species found in Sainte Luce, Microcebus tanosi (Anosy mouse lemur), Cheirogaleus medius (Fat-tailed dwarf lemur) and Avahi meridionalis (Southern woolly lemur). All three species are now classified as Endangered by the IUCN, and as such more research is urgently needed. The SEED Conservation Research Programme is also working with the Project Ala team which has been set up to establish biodiversity corridors between the forest fragments of Sainte Luce, and which will help to protect these species from further decline.

What Lemur Species We Protect

SEED Madagascar’s research programs protect several lemur species found in the region:
Collared brown lemur (Eulemur collaris).

  • Collared brown lemur (Eulemur collaris)
  • Anosy mouse lemur (Microcebus tanosi)
  • Fat-tailed Dwarf Lemur (Cheirogaleus medius)
  • Southern woolly lemur (Avahi meridionalis)

How We Support Local Communities

Conservation education with children.The work we do involves communities at every stage of project development, implementation, and evaluation. This makes projects more sustainable and promotes local ownership.

The SEED Madagascar Conservation Programme has had a permanent base in the community of Sainte Luce (southeast Madagascar) for more than five years. Through this relationship, SEED Madagascar draws on the knowledge of the community and uses guides trained by the forest management committee. In return, the programme provides training in ecology, conservation and the English language for local Malagasy, and runs a highly successful Saturday conservation club. Additionally, this volunteer program brings tourists (and the associated income and awareness) to the village.

Sustainable Livelihoods

We believe that conservation and supporting the local livelihoods of the communities of southeast Madagascar must go hand in hand. Many people in this region depend on natural resources from the forests and seas. We are working to support the transition to sustainable income sources through the following projects:

Project Mahampy – Helps women who work as traditional weavers to increase their income, and contributes scientific studies to enable the management of healthy Mahampy reedbeds for long term income generation.

Stitch Sainte Luce – Helps women who work in embroidery to run a sustainable co-operative, providing business training, and marketing and international sales support.

Oratsimba – Works to strengthen community-based, sustainable fisheries management and the economic resilience of fishing households in southeast Madagascar.

Renitantely – Works to improve the sustainability and viability of beekeeping as a livelihood amongst rural communities in the Anosy region.

Community Health

For over 15 years, SEED Madagascar has been working the improve public health in southeast Madagascar. Our current projects aim to:

  • Improve sanitation in Sainte Luce, including the WASH programs in local schools
  • Increase maternal and child health
  • Support water security and livelihoods programs
  • Increase awareness of sexual health and access to family planning materials

Education

Conservation education with children.

Conservation education with children.

In the Anosy region half of all children have never been to primary school, due to a lack of educational infrastructure and teachers. Our education projects help to tackle the shortfall by building new schools, repairing existing buildings, providing furniture and facilities to schools which don’t have enough, and supporting teachers to teach.

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Eden Reforestation Projects

Eden Reforestation Projects logo.

Eden Reforestation Projects

What We Do

Eden Reforestation Projects’ mission is to alleviate extreme poverty through environmental stewardship. Every year Eden Reforestation Projects employs thousands of villagers in Madagascar, Ethiopia, Haiti, and Nepal to plant millions of native tree species resulting in the alleviation of extreme poverty and the restoration of healthy forest systems.

Eden Reforestation Projects has been working in Madagascar since 2007, and our efforts have resulted in the planting of over 77 million dry deciduous and mangrove trees in Madagascar alone. Eden Reforestation Projects is the largest reforestation group in Madagascar, and we aim to plant billions, yes billions, of trees in Madagascar in the next decade.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

common brown lemur

A common brown lemur.

Habitat destruction is one of the main threats to lemurs in Madagascar; some studies estimate that over 80% of vegetation in the country has been degraded or destroyed. At Eden Reforestation Projects we’re working to combat this: 77 million trees were planted across Madagascar between 2007 and 2014. The organization is focusing its reforestation efforts in Madagascar around eight western Malagasy villages. In addition, we partner with one national park (Ankarafantsika), one university (Mahajanga), and one hotel resort with a private forest reserve (Antsanitia).

Mangroves

At Eden we’ve been working to rehabilitate mangrove estuaries in Madagascar since 2007. These habitats are critical to overall ecosystem health (combating erosion and improving ocean health) and also provide habitat for several mouse lemur species. In addition, healthy mangrove forests are green pathways for larger lemur species to cross from one patch of dry deciduous forest to another. Through our clearance, propagule collecting and planting work Mahajanga now has a healthy mangrove forest.

Dry Deciduous Reforestation Projects

IMG_6940In 2012, we expanded our reforestation work to dry deciduous forests. The overwhelming majority of the tree species grown here are endemic to Madagascar’s western regions, and virtually all of the species grown are native and essential to lemur species that inhabit these forests. Our main lemur habitat partner is Ankarafantsika National Park, which has a full nursery operating within the confines of the National Park and is home to eight endangered lemur species.

Fire prevention

Fire is the primary threat to all reforestation efforts in Madagascar, so we protect our reforestation sites by surrounding them with fire breaks and by hiring emergency fire prevention crews.

What Lemur Species We Protect

With the dry deciduous reforestation project our work is helping protect species present at Ankarafantsika National Park, including:

  • Coquerel’s sifaka (Propithecus coquereli)
  • Mongoose lemur (Eulemur mongoz)
  • Brown lemur (Eulemur fulvus)
  • Grey mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus)
  • Golden-brown mouse lemur (Microcebus ravelobensis)
  • Fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus medius)
  • Western woolly lemur (Avahi occidentalis)
  • Milne-Edwards’s sportive lemur (Lepilemur edwardsi)

How We Support Local Communities

IMG_6949Eden Reforestation Projects believes in holistic community development, including assisting with the construction of schools, fresh water wells, and some medical services. In addition, Eden Reforestation Projects partners with local communities to provide employment opportunities as tree planters and forest guards. These partnerships initially began with the “Employ to Plant” approach to habitat restoration, which pays thousands of people across multiple developing countries, including Madagascar, to plant trees.

Sustainability of programming

NCS_8591At Eden we take a diverse approach to sustainability, which begins with the establishment of legal agreements with the local, regional, and national government agencies that authorize the reforestation efforts and include preserving the restored forests in perpetuity. Further, Eden is partnered with Mahajanga University and has an agreement with the Ankarafantsika National Park, where we seek to educate the communities with the goal of preserving the forests and local lemur populations.

Fruit orchards and fuel-efficient stoves

We know that reforestation projects are only impactful if other programs are instituted to help the local communities refrain from cutting those new forests back down. Therefore, we have also planted fruit trees as well as trees that can be used in construction. These are beneficial to the local villagers and ensure that their physical and financial needs are accounted for. In addition, in each of the villages, fuel-efficient stoves and/or solar-stoves have been provided, which have largely led to a significant decrease in charcoal production and use in the areas Eden serves.

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Bristol Zoological Society

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What We Do

Bristol Zoological Society Pierre Lepi 1Bristol Zoological Society saves wildlife through conservation action and engaging people with the natural world. We currently focus efforts on the Sahamalaza peninsula of northwestern Madagascar. We are working together with other European zoos to protect the last remaining populations of two critically endangered lemur species, the blue-eyed black lemur (Eulemur flavifrons) and the Sahamalaza sportive lemur (Lepilemur sahamalazensis).

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

We raise awareness of the threats facing lemurs at the regional, national, and international level. For example, the zoological society worked with the government to create the Sahamalza Iles Radama National Park. In addition, the BZS Director of Conservation, Dr. Christoph Schwitzer, is the editor of Lemur News, an online and publicly available newsletter that connects the research and conservation community. In addition, the BZS has led the publication of several highly-visible articles, which effectively called attention to the plight of lemurs in Madagascar.

Some of these publications include:

Schwitzer et al. (2014) Protecting lemurs – response. Science. 344: 358
Schwitzer et al. (2014) Averting lemur extinctions amid Madagascar’s political crisis. Science. 343: 842-843

What Lemur Species We Protect

  • Blue-eyed black lemur (Eulemur flavifrons)
  • Sahamalaza sportive lemur (Lepilemur sahamalazensis)
  • Sambirano mouse lemur (Microcebus sambiranensis)
  • Northern giant mouse lemur (Mirza zaza)

How We Support Local Communities

Bristol Zoological Society Felicia inspecting Lepilemur pooThe Bristol Zoological Society actively engages with the public and scientific community, sharing knowledge, eliciting support, and guiding behavior change. We apply specialist skills to investigate conservation problems and to guide and support local communities in tackling environmental issues.

We work to improve the conservation status of target lemur species both through direct research and by supporting local NGOs in the region. As one of the core partners in the AEECL (Association Europeenne pour l’Etude et la Conservation des Lemuriens), we contribute to education in local communities by helping to employ 60 teachers in 37 villages and providing conservation education teaching materials.

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Lemur Love, Inc.

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What We Do

At Lemur Love we conduct scientific research and ​partner with Malagasy women to build capacity and promote conservation. We believe in leveraging both the heart and the mind in the movement to preserve Madagascar’s unique and endangered primates, the lemurs.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Our goal is to ensure lemurs and their forest homes are protected and thriving, through the power of women, ​science, and our extended global ‘troop’. We envision a world where both lemurs and humans are able to live alongside each other and thrive.

What Lemur Species We Protect

We conduct and disseminate scientific long-term research on Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta) populations in the northern portion of Tsimanampesotse. Moreover, along with our partners at the Pet Lemur Survey, we are committed to understanding the legal and illegal trades of wild lemurs through current and upcoming projects.

How We Support Local Communities

Lemur Love believes in investing in women, often underrepresented in both science and on the ground conservation leadership. Malagasy women possess unique insights and local knowledge that are crucial to devising robust solutions that will protect lemurs in the future. Lemur Love is collaborating with Ikala STEM, a women-led association that aims to promote education and science and to raise the profile of women in STEM in Madagascar.

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Mikajy Natiora

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What We Do

Outreach Mikajy Natiora

Mikajy Natiora undertaking outreach in a local school.

Mikajy Natiora protects Madagascar’s endemic biodiversity by combining ecological research and local community involvement. We currently focus our work on northwest Madagascar in the region surrounding the Sahamalaza Iles Radama National Park. We are funded by several foundations including the Van Tienhoven Foundation for International Nature Protection, the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, and the Rufford Foundation.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

We work to conserve lemurs by conducting research and maintaining updated information about endangered lemur populations at our study site in northwest Madagascar.

The local community also receives education from our organisation which is crucial to raising awareness of the importance of conserving lemurs and their forest habitat.

What Lemur Species We Protect

Carnival Mikajy Natiora

Mikajy Natiora participating in a local environmentally-themed carnival.

Species we protect include the Blue-eyed black lemur (Eulemur flavifrons), the only primate in the world with blue eyes, which is estimated to go extinct in the next decade unless drastic measures are taken to conserve the species.

In addition, Mikajy Natiora collects information about the:

  • Sahamalaza sportive lemur (Lepilemur sahamalazensis)
  • Sambirano mouse lemur (Microcebus sambiranensis)
  • Fork marked dwarf lemur (Phaner furcifer)
  • Western gentle lemur (Hapalemur griseus occidentalis)

How We Support Local Communities

At Mikajy Natiora we always inform local communities when we’re going to conduct activities in the vicinity by using public meetings to explain the objectives of our work. In addition, we deliver several education and outreach programs to supplement our research-based approach.

Mikajy Natiora

Mikajy Natiora staff!

Education, outreach, and training

We’ve been conducting regular education and outreach programs on the lemurs of the Sahamalaza-Iles Radama National Park since 2013. The objectives of this outreach are to increase the local communities’ awareness about the need and the importance of the conservation of the lemurs and their forest habitat.

In addition, we train park rangers and local stakeholders to increase their knowledge about biodiversity and their skills in managing and interacting with the local ecosystem sustainably.

Providing alternative livelihoods to communities

At Mikajy Natiora we’re implementing programs that allow communities to develop new sources of income that help decrease the need for humans to use the local forests for survival.

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Conservation Fusion

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What We Do

Conservation Fusion connects communities across the world through innovative education programs that promote conservation actions. The organization currently focuses its efforts in Madagascar where it partners with research-oriented organizations – including the Madagascar Biodiversity Partnership – to undertake education outreach programs. Conservation Fusion has ongoing programs in northern (Antsiranana region), eastern (Analmazaotra and Kianjavato), and southern Madagascar (Lavavolo).

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

We protect lemurs by raising awareness of lemur species and their conservation at four sites in southern Madagascar.

Aye-aye puppets L. septentrionalis project

What Lemur Species We Protect

Conservation Fusion help to protect the following species of lemur:

  • Aye-aye (Daubentonia madagascariensis)
  • Black-and-white ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata)
  • Diademed sifaka (Propithecus diadema)
  • Greater bamboo lemur (Prolemur simus)
  • Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta)
  • Northern sportive lemur (Lepilemur septentrionalis)
  • Verreaux’s sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi)

How We Support Local Communities

Our greatest successes have come from the relationships and collaborations that we have forged with researchers, local communities, and organizations who aim to complement Conservation Fusion’s education programs and vision.
Conservation fusion 2 Conservation Fusion continues education-based programming; our work in southern Madagascar is just one of the many initiatives being undertaken to raise awareness in-country. Here we focus on raising awareness of radiated tortoises, ring-tailed lemurs, and sifaka in the dry spiny forests of Lavavolo in southern Madagascar. Outreach programs – which have been implemented for over three years – consist of hands-on activities with the local villages and schools and include: community gardens, agriculture training, workshops on using fuel-efficient Rocket Stove, and a junior researcher day.

Conservation Festival Conservation fusion

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Madagascar Fauna and Flora Group

MFG Logo

What We Do

IMG_1543Our organisation, the Madagascar Fauna and Flora Group (MFG) unites zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens, universities and related conservation organizations worldwide to conserve the wildlife of Madagascar. With the help of our many partners, and thanks to the membership dues that these organizations provide, MFG manages Parc Ivoloina (a 282 hectare area) and the Rendrirendry Research Station at the Betampona Natural Reserve, both of which are in eastern Madagascar.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Starting in 2008, we received funding to undertake reforestation efforts in the region surrounding our project sites. The goals of this project were to work with local communities to replant trees in a 2 kilometer radius around the Betampona National Reserve. These reforestation efforts help to replenish habitat for lemurs and preserve the wider ecosystem, for the future.Varecia

We manage a 4-hectare zoological park within the larger Parc Ivoloina, where rescued and confiscated lemurs are kept in captivity until they can be released back into the wild. We also facilitate the success of captive breeding programs both in Madagascar and in partnership with programs in the United States. For example, the zoo has an established captive breeding program for Greater Bamboo lemurs and we have facilitated the first releases of captive-born black-and-white ruffed lemurs in the Betampona Nature Reserve; lemurs which had been raised by the Duke Lemur Center in the United States.

What Lemur Species We Protect

At MFG we have active research programs at our study sites in eastern Madagascar. These include research and conservation efforts aimed at helping the following species:

  • Black-and-white ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata)
  • Black lemur (Eulemur macaco)
  • Greater bamboo lemur (Prolemur simus)
  • Indri (Indri indri)
  • Diademed Sifaka (Propithecus diadema)

How We Support Local Communities

Capacity building

IMG_1518At MFG we are passionate about mentoring undergraduate and graduate students in Madagascar. We teach classes, and organize workshops that are aimed at providing hands-on training in a variety of disciplines. The support we provide also involves work with farmers to improve their food production levels, and with teachers to improve how active learning strategies are incorporated in the classroom.

Environmental Education

IMG_4049The MFG has a long history of undertaking environmental education projects. In 1995, we launched our Saturday School program at the Parc Ivoloina, which was designed to enhance the zoo’s education programs and discourage the acquisition of lemurs as pets.In 1997 we supplemented this program by training teachers on incorporating environmental education into the everyday school curriculum; this work resulted in the production of a 65-page manual entitled, “A practical guide for the teacher: the application of environmental education in primary school instruction.”

Over the years, these educational programs have been expanded to include both middle and high schoolers. We even provide training to elected officials in the local villages. Many of these training opportunities take place in the Ivoloina Conservation Training Center, a facility that includes a meeting room, library, and laboratory.

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