Top Nav

Archive | Captive Care and Breeding

Zazamalala Foundation

Zazamalala Foundation logo

The Zazamalala Foundation protects the dry deciduous forest of western Madagascar through reforestation, community development, captive breeding, and forest monitoring.

Sign for the Zazamalala Forest along the Route Nationale 35. Photo: Zazamalala Foundation.

What We Do

The Zazamalala forest was established in 2000 when blind Simon Rietveld returned after 30 years to the Morondava area in West Madagascar. He was shocked that most of the dry forest had been cleared. So, Simon and a team of international volunteers, together with paid local people, planted thousands of seedlings of rare species that once lived in the area. Gradually, the Zazamalala forest started to flourish.

Just 30 minutes by car from the Morondova airport, Zazamalala is an oasis of wilderness alongside small villages and rice fields. It provides the habitat for many animals, including lemurs, fossa, bush pigs, mongoose, snakes, and chameleons, and a huge variety of plants. At the Zazamalala botanical garden, we collect thousands of seeds and use them for reforestation. Zazamalala also houses a tortoise and turtle breeding centre.

What Lemur Species We Protect

Verreaux’s sifaka. Photo: Zazamalala Foundation.

The following lemur species can be found at Zazamalala.

  • Verreaux’s sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi)
  • Greater bamboo lemur (Prolemur simus)
  • Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta)
  • Red-fronted brown lemur (Eulemur rufifrons)
  • White-fronted brown lemur (Eulemur albifrons)
  • Fat-tailed dwarf lemur (Cheirogaleus medius)
  • Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur (Microcebus berthae)
  • Grey mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus)
  • Coquerel’s giant mouse lemur (Mirza coquereli)
  • Western fork-Marked dwarf lemur (Phaner pallescens)
  • Red-tailed sportive lemur (Lepilemur ruficaudatus)

How We Protect Lemurs and Other Wildlife

Reforestation

We are working to reforest a 30 km long and 1 to 3 hectares wide green corridor that will combine two isolated nature reserves: Mena Be and Zazamalala nature reserves. This corridor will allow animals to mingle, which is essential for genetic diversity. Thanks to our donors, Zazamalala forest was substantially enlarged between 2019-2021. We continually reforest and add more hectares of land, making more habitat for animals on the edge of extinction.

Turtle Breeding Program

The critically endangered Flat-tail Tortoise. Photo: Zazamalala Foundation.

In the Zazamalala botanical garden, we breed two critically endangered turtles.

The critically endangered Flat-tail Tortoise (Pyxis planicauda) lives in a small part of the dry deciduous forest of west Madagascar. The last remaining males and females rarely meet and when they do, the female produces only a single egg per year. In the Zazamalala botanical garden, we keep many males and females together to maximize encounters and release the young after two years.

The critically endangered Madagascar Big-headed Turtle (Erymnochelys madagascariensis) lived for millions of years in the rivers and lakes of west Madagascar. At Zazamalala we breed them in large semi-natural containers, and release the young after one year.

In 2020, 43 critically endangered newborn Big-head turtles and Flat-tail tortoises were released in the forest and its ponds.

How We Support Local Communities

The Zazamalala concept for nature protection and reforestation encompasses a wholistic approach, including protection of animals and plants, and involving the local people. Photo: Zazamalala Foundation.

Apart of reforestation and breeding of endangered animals, community development is a prime issue. This means giving as many local people as possible paid work in the forest so they can be economically independent.

Education

In the villages around Zazamalala, education is limited and people have no electricity, bicycles, or books. We support education by repairing schools and constructing latrines and school desks.  We also organize activities to help people learn to write and speak French, which is important to find work.

Health and Development

We improve roads and constructs water pumps to provide the local community with clean drinking water. Zazamalala distributes ADES solar cookers to help families reduce their need for fuelwood and charcoal from the forest.

In 2020, 85 solar cookers were distributed to local families. Another 100 cookers were distributed in 2021.

The forests of west Madagascar are among the most threatened habitats in the world – only 3% remains.

We restore wilderness and support the people living around it. You can help!

Visit Zazamala’s Website

Continue Reading

Institute of Zoology, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover (TiHo)

University of Hanover

What We Do

Eulemur fulvus, Ankarafantsika National Park (photo: E. Zimmermann)

Eulemur fulvus, Ankarafantsika National Park (photo: E. Zimmermann)

At The Institute of Zoology at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover we help protect lemurs through on-the-ground research, capacity building, and captive management.

The working group “Lemur conservation Biology” from the Institute of Zoology has worked in the Ankarafantsika National Park (135,000 ha park) since 1995 and in the Mariarano forest since 2003. The Ankarafantsika National Park comprises the largest remaining patch of continuous dry deciduous forest in northwestern Madagascar and is therefore of utmost importance for the preservation of the remaining biodiversity.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

The Institute of Zoology in Hannover undertakes cutting edge research on lemurs both inside and outside Madagascar. One of our major aims is to increase understanding of how nocturnal lemurs have adapted and evolved in their respective environments.

In particular, the Institute studies the patterns, evolution, and consequences of differences between species in their behavior, bioacoustics, ecology, and susceptibility for diseases. Combining this knowledge with an understanding of how habitat needs and habitat fragmentation impact the genetic diversity of populations,it is possible to evaluate the changes for long-term survival of these populations.

In addition to our work in the field, the Institute of Zoology also leads the ex situ management of Goodman’s mouse lemur (Microcebus lehilahytsara), and keep one of only two breeding colonies worldwide for this species.

What Lemur Species We Protect

In the Ankarafantsika National Park, our work impacts:

  • Coquerel’s sifaka (Propithecus coquereli)
  • Milne-Edwards sportive lemurs (Lepilemur edwardsi)
  • Western woolly lemurs (Avahi occidentalis)
  • Golden-brown mouse lemurs (Microcebus ravelobensis), described by the Institute in 1998
  • Mongoose lemurs (Eulemur mongoz)
  • Grey mouse lemurs (Microcebus murinus)
  • Fat-tailed dwarf lemurs (Cheirogaleus medius)
  • Brown lemurs (Eulemur fulvus)

How We Support Local Communities

Species and habitat conservation cannot be achieved without involving the Malagasy community and their active participation in decision-making processes. As a prerequisite, any conservation initiative must therefore aim to strengthen local knowledge and to raise responsibility for the unique biodiversity of Madagascar.

Since 1995, the Institute of Zoology has established a series of collaboration contracts with Malagasy authorities including the University of Antananarivo (Department of Zoology), the University of Mahajanga (Biology Department), and Madagascar National Parks (MNP). These are key to the long-term success of the programs and to build capacity in Madagascar for lemur conservation.

Specifically, the Institute aims to:

  1. jointly perform research projects and publish scientific results with Malagasy collaborators
  2. improve access of Malagasy partners to scientific results from the international research community
  3. provide institutional support for Malagasy universities and collaborators
  4. increase scientific networking with Malagasy colleagues
  5. support and mentor Malagasy students, postdocs, and researchers
  6. contribute to local capacity building of students and local field assistants
Continue Reading

Lemur Conservation Foundation

Lemur Conservation Foundation logoLemur Conservation Foundation

Supporting Member of the Lemur Conservation Network

What We Do

Critically endangered mongoose lemur born at LCF in 2014.

Critically endangered mongoose lemur born at LCF in 2014.

The Lemur Conservation Foundation (LCF) helps conserve lemurs through managed breeding programs, outreach, and on-the-ground conservation in northeast Madagascar.

We are a non-profit corporation dedicated to the preservation and conservation of the primates of Madagascar through managed breeding, scientific research, and education. The foundation (and accompanying lemur reserve) focus on fostering natural lemur behavior to encourage a dynamic population.

LCF supports educational programs started by the late Dr. Alison Jolly in Madagascar and is developing content to bring those programs to classrooms in the United States. In addition, LCF provides financial support to assist in the establishment of a tourist and research camp in Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve in northeast Madagascar, home to the elusive Silky Sifaka and a unique population of Indri with black pelage.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

LCF has partnered with the Madagascar National Parks in Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve (ASSR) to provide boundary demarcations for this protected area and a site called Camp Indri which provides base camp for tourists and researchers. This helps protect habitat for lemurs and other wildlife.

Demarcation signs funded by LCF to outline the boundary of the Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve.

Demarcation signs funded by LCF to outline the boundary of the Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve.

Ex-situ we operate a 100 acre reserve in Myakka City, Florida. The reserve is set up with two semi free-ranging forests, each approximately ten acres, and two traditional enclosure buildings. As a Certified Related Facility with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, LCF participates in the Eulemur Species Survival Plan (SSP), Ruffed Lemur SSP, and Ring-tailed Lemur SSP, which include a global network of institutions working towards the propagation of selected lemur species in order to ensure the healthy existence of those species whose survival is in peril.

LCF also hosts field training programs, in which professors and their students utilize the facility and the lemur colony for behavioral observations and research on social dynamics and cognitive skills, as well as habitat use and food selection. These training programs produce future primatologists and conservation biologists which will carry the conservation imperative forward for lemurs and other endangered species. Fostering and inspiring conservation based careers is an invaluable part of LCF’s mission.

What Lemur Species We Protect

At our reserve in Florida, we house over 45 lemurs of six different species, most of which are critically endangered or endangered. LCF is a Certified Related Facility with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and participates in their Species Survival Plans which work to maintain a genetic safety net for a variety of lemur species. The species currently at the reserve are:

A family of Lemur catta in one of LCF’s semi free-ranging forests, where field students can observe lemurs in a natural environment.

A family of Lemur catta in one of LCF’s semi free-ranging forests, where field students can observe lemurs in a natural environment.

  • Collared lemur (Eulemur collaris)
  • Mongoose lemur (Eulemur mongoz)
  • Sanford’s lemur (Eulemur sanfordi)
  • Common brown lemur (Eulemur fulvus)
  • Red ruffed lemur (Varecia rubra)
  • Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta)

LCF is supporting projects in Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve (ASSR), a large mountainous rainforest in northeastern Madagascar, which has long been recognized as a lemur priority site. At least 11 lemur species are found here including:

  • Indri (Indri indri)
  • Silky sifaka (Propithecus candidus)
  • Aye-aye (Daubentonia madagascariensis)
  • Mittermeier’s mouse lemur (Microcebus mittermeieri)
  • Northern bamboo lemur (Hapalemur occidentalis)

How We Support Local Communities

Educational Outreach

We have the pleasure of continuing Dr. Alison Jolly’s legacy with the Ako Project, in collaboration with Dr. Hanta Rasamimanana, Dr. Jolly’s former colleague, professor at ENS, and Madagascar’s “Lemur Lady”.

The first book in the Ako Project series, Ako the Aye-Aye.

The first book in the Ako Project series, Ako the Aye-Aye.

The Ako Project, sponsored by EnviroKidz, is an educational children’s book series, translated in both English and Malagasy, which is intended to teach Malagasy children about different species of lemur in a fun, tangible way. The books come with matching curriculum to help teachers convey the conservation themes and concepts envisioned for the stories.

Training support

LCF also collaborates with École Normale Supérieure (ENS), the teachers’ training arm of the University of Antananarivo. This partnership supports the students of ENS in their field research and field work theses at the Berenty Reserve, a private wildlife reserve in southern Madagascar. Research done at Berenty includes lemur census surveys and plant phenology.

Continue Reading

Reniala NGO and Lemur Rescue Center

Lemur Rescue CenterThe Reniala Reserve and Lemur Rescue Center

What We Do

The Reniala Reserve and Lemur Rescue Center works to rehabilitate lemurs from the illegal pet trade in southwest Madagascar. Our aims are to protect the forests of the reserve, rehabilitate lemurs from the bushmeat and pet trade at the Lemur Rescue Center, and develop alternative livelihood projects for people.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

We protect habitat for the conservation of lemurs and other Malagasy wildlife. We manage the Reniala reserve, a 6 km-square protected area of dry spiny forest, located 29 km north of Toliara, a larger city in southwest Madagascar.

Our other main focus is the rehabilitation of lemurs rescued from the pet and bushmeat trades. These lemurs are cared for at our Lemur Rescue Center, with the goal of rehabilitating and releasing them back into the reserve.

Rehabilitation and reintroduction of lemurs into the wild is not an easy process and we are one of few facilities in Madagascar authorized to undertake this work. Lemurs are difficult to reintroduce into the wild, therefore, animals that cannot be released, such as those that have lost the ability to forage for food, are cared for at the center for the duration of their lives.

Given the scale of the pet and bushmeat trade in Madagascar, there are always more lemurs waiting to be rehabilitated than the facility can hold. Therefore, efforts are underway to increase the capacity of the Rescue Center over the coming years.

What Lemur Species We Protect

ONG RenialaOur work helps several species of lemur including ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta).

Through our work, we facilitate research programs on ring-tailed lemurs. Research projects also include nocturnal lemur monitoring through camera traps, as well as many projects examining lemur behavior, feeding, and health.

How We Support Local Communities

Alternative livelihoods

We seek to help establish alternative livelihoods projects (such as beekeeping) so that local communities have a reliable source of income and are not reliant on forest exploitation to make a living.

Research

Our work involves researchers from the United States and from within Madagascar. We have also undertaken social science studies on the attitudes of local communities towards wildlife, which will help inform conservation efforts and how communities might live sustainably side by side with nature.

Continue Reading

Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust (American Friends of Durrell)

Durrell Conservation AFD

What We Do

Durrell Conservation Lee Durrell releasing ploughshare tortoises in 2011

Lee Durrell releasing ploughshare tortoises in 2011.

American Friends of Durrell promotes and supports the work of Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust (DWCT), a British wildlife charity established in 1963 by author and conservationist, Gerald Durrell. DWCT’s mission is to save species from extinction.

In Madagascar, the DWCT has been undertaking conservation actions for species and habitats since 1983. It has pioneered efforts for breeding and release-to-the wild of critically endangered species, for protecting vulnerable habitats and for enabling and empowering local communities to manage their natural environments sustainably. DWCT’s Madagascar Program employs approximately 30 people, mostly Malagasy nationals, and operates at eight sites. Lemurs are flagship species for two of the sites where the DWCT works: the Alaotran gentle lemur at Lac Alaotra and the black and white ruffed lemur at Manombo.

The American Friends of Durrell currently contribute to two of DWCT’s projects: (1) the Alison Jolly Madagascar Scholarship; and (2) the Madagascar Program Management and Coordination fund, which essentially covers the core costs of DWCT’s work in Madagascar. In the future, the American Friends of Durrell will likely increase their funding of the organization’s programs, especially as it relates to lemur conservation.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Durrell Conservation Alaotran gentle lemurs

Alaotran gentle lemurs.

Thanks to the help of the American Friends of Durrell, the DWCT in Madagascar has been able to achieve several landmark moments in lemur conservation. Notable successes include the establishment of a Ramsar Site for Lac Alaotra (East Madagascar) and a National Park at Baly Bay (West Madagascar).

What Lemur Species We Protect

Lemurs are flagship species for two of the sites where the DWCT works: the Alaotran gentle lemur (Hapalemur alaotrensis) at Lac Alaotra (East Madagascar) and the Black-and-white ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata) at Manombo (Southeast Madagascar).

How We Support Local Communities

DWCT pioneered its approach to partnering with local communities in the early 1990s on the project to save the ploughshare tortoise of Madagascar. It was inspired and led by the late Lala Jean Rakotoniaina, who became DWCT’s Community Conservation Coordinator and a Disney Conservation Hero. Now all of DWCT’s work in Madagascar – and elsewhere in the world – is modeled on this approach, with local communities participating in management actions and ultimately taking on decisions concerning their natural resources. The empowerment of local communities helps increase the sustainability of programming, and therefore the viability of species and target habitats.

Continue Reading

Madagascar Oasis

Madagascar Oasis Logo

What We Do

Madagascar Oasis Photo1At Madagascar Oasis we work with Madagascar’s national and largest zoo: Tsimbazaza Zoo, to increase the effectiveness of its captive lemur outreach. A major portion of our activities involve refurbishing and updating the zoo, which houses several species of lemur and is often the only way in which urban Malagasy citizens are able to interact with their country’s most famous animals.

Our work also focuses on increasing urban well-being by creating green spaces (parks with trees, flowers, and other vegetation) throughout the capital city of Madagascar, which is home to over 2 million people. We help improve the environment here for better health of residents and to educate children to appreciate nature from an early age.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

Madagascar Oasis Photo5

One our larger projects at Madagascar Oasis involves the renovation of the Tsimbazaza Zoo, which accommodates over 400,000 visitors per year. The zoo, which is one of the only ways that the capital city’s 2 million residents can see lemurs, is key to many in-country outreach programs. In fact, schools from a 200 kilometer radius make sure to send their students on class trips to the zoo on a yearly basis. Given the zoo’s high visibility and importance to lemur conservation, Madagascar Oasis aims to transform the zoo into a showcase where citizens and tourists will be able to appreciate Madagascar’s biodiversity. As such, we are refurbishing the zoo’s basic infrastructure, including rebuilding pathways and providing lemurs with newer and more spacious enclosures. We have been working on this project since May 2013, and will also work to ensure that plant and animal descriptions across the zoo are updated, uniform, and informative. We hope that this important work will increase visitation by 15% which amounts to an extra 5,000 visitors per month!


What Lemur Species We Protect

Our work with Tsimbazaza Zoo helps protect the lemur species it houses, including:

  • Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta)
  • Brown lemur (Eulemur fulvus)
  • Black-and-white ruffed lemur (Varecia variegata)
  • Red-bellied lemur (Eulemur rubriventer)

How We Support Local Communities

Madagascar Oasis Photo4Our philosophy at Madagascar Oasis is to only initiate projects that fulfill a need in the local community and require minimum maintenance once they are complete. We make sure to always involve the local community throughout the projects we undertake, including prioritizing projects, gaining approval from decision-makers, implementation, and handing the project over to a local entity.

We ensure that programs set up by us continue, following the hand-over to a local organization. This involves providing technical training where necessary and discussing ideas with local communities of how revenue could be generated to ensure program continuity.

Continue Reading

Duke Lemur Center

Duke Lemur Center logo.

What We Do

Founded in 1966, the Duke Lemur Center (DLC) at Duke University (Durham, North Carolina, USA) is an internationally acclaimed non-invasive research center housing over 200 lemurs across 14 species: the most diverse population of lemurs on Earth, outside their native Madagascar.

Because all of our research is non-invasive, the DLC is open to the public and educates more than 35,000 visitors annually. DLC’s highly successful conservation breeding program seeks to preserve vanishing species such as the aye-aye, Coquerel’s sifaka, and blue-eyed black lemur. Our Madagascar Conservation Programs study and protect lemurs (the most endangered mammals on Earth) in their native habitat. The Division of Fossil Primates examines primate extinction and evolution over time and houses over 35,000 fossils, including extinct giant lemurs and one of the world’s largest and most important collections of early anthropoid primates.

How We Protect Lemurs And Other Wildlife

DLC’s SAVA Conservation project is dedicated to preserving the natural biodiversity of Madagascar, especially its charismatic lemurs, by empowering local communities to be conservation leaders.

Collaboration with National Parks

Clear delineation of the park boundaries is essential to maintaining and monitoring the forest.

We’ve helped increase protection and monitoring of parks in Madagascar. For example at Marojejy, we have continued to sponsor clearing the park limits, painting trees, and hanging new signs for boundary demarcation, and a road-block barrier to prevent trucks from transporting precious wood out of the forest. We also help support monitoring work undertaken by village guards and park staff.

Manantenina near the Marojejy National Park lacks reliable sources of clean water because local sources are often contaminated with disease-causing microbes. We created a partnership agreement with the community to install a deep-water well that will maintain safe water even during the dry season.

Research

CURSA researchers and local forest managers in the COMATSA protected area of the SAVA region.

In collaboration with the local university (CURSA), we study lemur viability in protected areas in SAVA.

We have partnered with Malagasy PhD and Masters students on their thesis projects on the ecology and conservation of lemurs in the COMATSA, a corridor between Marojejy, Anjanaharibe-Sud, and Tsaratanana.

In addition to research in the forest on lemurs, the team conducts socio-ecological research with the communities. Through focus groups, key-informant interviews, and lemur awareness campaigns, the team is learning about how people use forest resources, especially the level of hunting.In collaboration with CURSA, we are studying the links between socioeconomics, agriculture, nutrition, and health.

Conservation Breeding Program

We maintain the world’s largest “genetic safety net” for endangered lemurs. At the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, North Carolina, USA we’re proud to have celebrated more than 3,405 births through our conservation breeding program since our founding in 1966.

What Lemur Species We Protect

At Duke Lemur Center we house the following lemur species for breeding and non-invasive research:

  • Aye-aye (Daubentonia madagascariensis)
  • Black and White Ruffed Lemur (Varecia variegata variegata)
  • Blue-eyed Black lemur (Eulemur flavifrons)
  • Collared Lemur (Eulemur collaris)
  • Coquerel’s Sifaka (Propithecus coquereli)
  • Crowned Lemur (Eulemur coronatus)
  • Eastern Lesser Bamboo Lemur (Hapalemur griseus)
  • Fat-tailed Dwarf Lemur (Cheirogaleus medius)
  • Grey Mouse Lemur (Microcebus murinus)
  • Mongoose Lemur (Eulemur mongoz)
  • Red-bellied Lemur (Eulemur rubriventer)
  • Red-fronted Lemur (Eulemur rufifrons)
  • Red Ruffed Lemur (Varecia rubra)
  • Ring-tailed Lemur (Lemur catta)

We also support research focusing on the Silky Sifaka (Propithecus candidus) a highly endangered lemur found in the north east of Madagascar.

How We Support Local Communities

Our goals are preserving natural environments as well as increasing sustainability and resilience. We achieve these goals through activities centered on education, reforestation, sustainable agriculture, fuel-efficient stoves, women’s health, and much more.

Environmental education (EE)

Fostering a generation of environmental stewards begins in the school classroom with Madagascar’s youth, and incorporating the environment into daily classroom instruction can lead to a generation of Malagasy people interested in and equipped to protect their natural heritage.

Children proudly display their Lemur Appreciation certificates after a school visit in Manantenina

We introduced an environmental education training manual originally developed by the Madagascar Flora and Fauna Group and the Ministry of Education. In partnership with skilled Malagasy educators, the DLC has introduced and trained school officials on the implementation of the educational curriculum into daily lesson plans. This approach ensures that the environmental education program is widely adopted from all levels of the education system. We want to ensure that the information is presented in a standardized and culturally sensitive manner, and therefore more readily adopted by the teachers on a daily basis. In collaboration with the school districts of Sambava and Andapa, we’ve conducted workshops with over 2,000 teachers to train them to incorporate environmental education into daily lessons.

Landscape Restoration

DLC sponsored tree nursery with the local school at Belaoka-Marovato, Andapa district.

We maintain tree nurseries with communities to supply high quality seedlings of diverse trees including over a dozen native species, cash crops like coffee, cloves, and cacao, and over a dozen fruit species. As of the writing of this article, we partner with five communities to maintain tree nurseries and support their reforestation efforts. Each nursery produces approximately 25,000 seedlings per year, which are distributed to the community members to plant on their lands and during group planting events. Our staff provide consultation on proper planting techniques and follow up evaluations to determine seedling survival.

We are partnered with local collaborators to maintain and monitor 4 reforestation plantations throughout the SAVA region, with over 59,000 trees planted on 20 hectares in 2021.

CURSA Director, Dr. MANJARIBE Christophe (left) demonstrates proper tree planting techniques with staff and students at their demonstration agroforestry field station.

Information campaign and distribution of fuel-efficient ‘rocket’ stoves

More than 80% of people in Madagascar use firewood or charcoal to cook. We partner with the Swiss organization ADES, which produces fuel-efficient stoves in Madagascar that burn 1/3 the biomass of firewood or charcoal compared to traditional stoves. Between 2020 and 2021 alone, over 500 households received training and subsidized stoves. Stoves are sold during demonstrations, and through local entrepreneurs serving as distributors. We are evaluating participants, and found 100% of users are satisfied and save 25-50kg of charcoal on average per month.

Women’s reproductive health

We maintain collaboration with British NGO Marie Stopes International, to support nurses visiting remote villages and providing consultation and services on women’s health and reproduction.

Continue Reading

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.

Continue Reading