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Archive | Rehabilitating Pet Lemurs

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.

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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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