Written by Jonas Kambale: Coordinator of Pangolin Conservation Project
The MENTOR-POP Programme Fellowship held in Yaounde-Cameroon (2016-2017) led to the development of the Pangolin Conservation Project in Maiko-Tayna-Kahuzi-Biega Landscape. The project is hosted by Tayna Center for Conservation Biology (TCCB) and funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).
The project is located in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), in Maiko-Tayna-Kahuzi-Biega Landscape (No. 10), in and around three protected areas: Kahuzi-Biega and Maiko National Parks and Tayna Gorilla Reserve. Like the rest of Central Africa, these protected areas are home to three species of pangolins: white-bellied pangolin, black-bellied pangolin and the giant ground pangolin.
The main objective of the project is to strengthen the institutional capacity of TCCB by supporting three junior lecturers to earn Master’s Degrees at the University of Kisangani (UNIKIS).
The Junior lecturers are conducting their Master’s degree research on the “Ecology of three Central African pangolin species: white-bellied pangolin, black-bellied pangolin and the giant ground pangolin”, on one hand, and on the “monitoring pangolin bushmeat and scales supply chain in the Landscape No. 10”, on the other. The findings of their research will lead to a pangolin management plan for Maiko-Tayna-Kahuzi-Biega Landscape.
Francis TARLA (middle), the MENTOR-POP Coordinator and Jonas Kambale, Project Coordinator, with Junior Lecturers reviewing their research protocols (Kisangani, DRC)
During field work with students in community Forest around Kisangani