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Sifaka Conservation Update!

Spring has sprung!  Time to catch up with our Sifaka conservation teams to see what everyone's been up to in the new year...

Sifaka Conservation participates in the official opening of regional reforestation campaign 2017

Ankirihitra (District of Ambato Boeni, Boeny, Mahajanga)

January 20th, 2017, marked the official opening of the 2017 reforestation campaign in the Boeny region (The rural commune of Ambalakida, Mahajanga II, Boeny) organized by the DREEF of that region.  The theme chosen for this year is "Mamboly hazo, mikajy ny tontolo, manavao angovo" which translates to "Plant trees for the protection of the environment and renew energy".

Our opening ceremonies!

Our opening ceremonies!

The Sifaka Conservation team planting young plants in Marohogo.

The Sifaka Conservation team planting young plants in Marohogo.

Nearly 8,400 seedlings composed of four species (including Albizia lebbeck, Ceiba pentandra, Acacia and Gmelina) were planted by the participants over an area of approximately 7 ha . These fast-growing species were chosen due to their potential to be used as firewood and charcoal, in order to meet the energy requirements of the local population. The hope is that the availability of these species will curb the loss of forest cover in the Boeny region, whose forests are extremely vulnerable as a result of charcoal exploitation. The Sifaka Conservation project participated in this reforestation program.


Terrific tree-planting in Dabolava!

Terrific tree-planting in Dabolava!

Reforestation and Awareness Events With Locals

Dabolava (district of Miandrivazo, Menabe, Toliary)

A reforestation program is also underway in Amboloando forest, an important habitat of the crowned sifaka.  This program is being carried out in collaboration with VOI Rianala, the local population of Dabolava and the military camp of the Miandrivazo district. Awareness campaigns were carried out in the 4 villages of Dabolava in order to encourage the villagers to participate, and raise awareness for upcoming reforestation events. At each of the events, we discussed the principles of local biodiversity conservation; taking responsibility through the practice of reforestation; and in the villages of Dabolava and Soanafindra, we even organized a football competition to encourage young people to get involved!

Two days of reforestation were organized for Feb 3-4 and attended by 245 local villagers - both adults, and also pupils from schools from Dabolava and Ambinda.  Reforestation was led by the Miandrivazo military chief, the Mayor of Dabolava and his two deputies, VOI Rianala, Chief Fokontany of Dabolava and the village chiefs.  On the second day, 120 participants came from the villages of Valoanaka and Ambinda.  1,506 trees were planted during these two days of reforestation, and additional trees will be planted by the Sifaka Conservation project volunteers, and also the members of VOI.

Crowds at the village awareness event...

Crowds at the village awareness event...

The 2017 Sifaka Cup!

The 2017 Sifaka Cup!


Officialisation of the protection of Madiromirafy and its natural resources

Madiromirafy (district of Maevatanana, Betsiboka, Mahajanga)

Meanwhile, in Madiromirafy, the month of January was focused on preparing for the formalization of the transfer of management of the local forest and natural resources, and January 31 marked the official date.

The ceremony marking the transfer of management of natural and renewable resources was made on the 31 January 2017. The transferred areas comprise 4,365 ha of forest resources, fishery resources, grazing area and agricultural zone. This transfer brings together two rural communes, Maevatanana II and Madiromirafy, whose headquarters are located in the rural commune of Madiromirafy. Besides the management contract agreement, the VOI AINA, the forest brigades (polisin'ala) and the water brigades (polisin-drano) were trained in their roles and responsibilities in the management of natural resources. Implementation of the VOI's annual work plan will be further supported by the Sifaka Conservation Project. This new management contract helps protect the wildlife and natural resources of this site, while also preparing for the establishment of a new protected area!

 

Arrival of local authorities at the opening reception

Arrival of local authorities at the opening reception

Raising the flag

Raising the flag

Speeches by officials from SAFDGRF (DGF)

Speeches by officials from SAFDGRF (DGF)