In southwestern Cameroon, not far from the country’s two largest cities, lies the Ebo Forest almost 1,500 square kilometers of mountain slopes and river valleys whose trees’ thick canopy shelters a fascinating array of species. While the forest has long been used by nearby villages for subsistence activities such as hunting, gathering, fishing and small-scale agriculture, its proximity to Cameroon’s big cities makes it an easy target for poachers looking to sell bush meat at high prices to urban residents. A protected area has been proposed to safeguard the region’s wildlife, yet that designation remains in limbo; in the meantime, palm oil plantations are encroaching on the forest, and the government is also considering
two logging concessions that would destroy much of the habitat essential to the wildlife there.
The Bamenda Highlands landscape
The Bamenda Highlands lies in the western highlands of Cameroon which consist of a chain of volcanic mountains. These highlands contain the largest remaining patches of afromontane forest in West Africa. There are about 8 protected areas in the region: Kagwene Wildlife Sanctuary, Bali Ngemba Native administration Forest Reserve, Bafut Ngemba Native Administration Forest Reserve, Mt Oku Plant Life Sanctuary, Mbi Crater, Mbembe Forest Reserve, Kom-Wum Native Administration Forest Reserve, and Kimbi-Fungom National Park. These areas are mixed forest and savannah grasslands with some of the highest levels of endemism in the Western Highlands. This area is a biodiversity hotspot of global significance that supports a high diversity of animal and plant species, large numbers with restricted ranges, and many of which are threatened. Some of these threatened species include the Cross River gorilla (Gorilla gorilla deihli), the Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes elioti), the drill monkey (Mandrillus leucophaeus) and the Preuss’s guenon monkey (Cercopithecus preussi). These areas also contain a large number of insects, plants, reptiles and amphibians, small mammals and many bird species.
Our interventions in the Bamenda highlands over the yeare have included amongst others:
Ecological monitoring of the Nigeria- Cameroon Chimpanzees in the Kom-Wum forest
Alternative sustainable Economic activities for over 200 forest- dependent peoples in the Kom-Wum, forest reserve, The Njising-Tabenken forest, the Ako-Mebeme forest Reserve
Bird survey and ecological monitoring in the Kilum-Ijim forest reserve, the Njising-Tabenken forest etc.
Environmental education, sensitization of forest dependent communities, Water catchment restoration across the highlands
Forest gardening through modern agroforestry techniques to improve on soil health and boost family income with over 10,000,000 trees planted with more than 50 farming groups
School environmental education club
and tree planting
SURUDEV has a twenty (20) year strategic plan to improve on these activities with at least 200,000,000CFA Frs needed to boost these activities
Campo Ma'an National Park is a biodiversity hotspot, with a wide range of plant and animal species, including several taxonomic endemics. It is also a traditional territory of two main indigenous groups, the Bagyeli (Pygmies) and Bantu, who have resided in this location for over 4000 years. Mammal species include forest elephants, duikers, hippos, bushpigs, giant pangolins, black colobus, mandrills and leopards. A small population of forest buffalo reside in the southern area of the park. Campo Ma'an National Park harbours populations of critically endangered western lowland gorilla and endangered central chimpanzee. The area is considered a priority landscape for conservation of western lowland gorillas and central chimpanzees by the IUCN and the park is the site of an ongoing gorilla habituation project. Reptile species reported are 122, and fish species are 165. A survey of millipedes, conducted in 2015, reports 27 species in the Campo Ma'an National Park, the most abundant being Aporodesmus gabonicus. It is also one of the 33 bird identified areas in the southwestern corner of Cameroon, and has more than 300 bird species. The forest type is mainly closed evergreen canopy, and is described as Atlantic Biafran forest with many plant species in the Caesalpiniaceae family.
Our approach in the Campo Ma’an National Park include amongst others:
1. Equip ecoguards in the fight against poaching.
2. Facilitate ecological monitoring of gorillas.
3. Understand and solve conflicts between elephants and humans.
4. Contribute to the education mission in the Park with the local populations.
5. Support local development initiatives to enhance economic resilience.
MBAM AND DJEREM LANDSCAPE
The Mbam and Djerem National Park, created in January 2000, is a compensatory mechanism of the Chad-Cameroon Pipeline Project’s Environmental Compensation Plan.
Covering an area of 416,512 hectares, the Park’geographic range extends to the Adamaoua, an area comprising both Equatorial Rainforests (South and East) and Sudano-Guinean savanna areas.
Two large rivers flow through the Park; The Djerem river flows from North to South in the Eastern part of the Park. Djerem is actually the name given to the upper river of the Sanaga. The Mbam, main river of the Sanaga, flows from North to South in the Western part of the Park. SURUDEV’s seeks financial assistance to carry out longterm conservation activities in Mbam and Djerem National Park to benefit endangered spoecies notably: Elephants, Pangloins, gorillas and Chimps\. Majpor interventions shall include
• Fight against poaching
• Capacity-building of forest dependent communities
• Monitoring and research on the dynamics of important wildlife species
• Environmental education and livelihood support to forest adjacent peoples
TCHABAL MBABO FOREST LANDSCAPE
This initiative seeks to improve on the livelihoods of poor farmers in the Tchabal Mbabo landscape in the Adamawa plateau through landscape restoration and conservation of the biodiversity. Therefore, through this project, we shall secure the economic future of these local people at the same time leading to a successful conservation of the forest ecosystem and biodiversity. The objectives of the project are; main objective: to support the ecological or green infrastructure of the Adamawa Plateau Landscape. Specific objectives: To characterize the watersheds of Adamawa Plateau, To characterize the water catchments and riparian forests of the main rivers flowing from Adamawa Plateau, To rebuild the surrounding Agricultural landscapes through sustainable agroforestry systems, To restore the degraded watershed and riparian forests through tree planting, to restore at least 30,000 ha of degraded landscape of the Adamawa Plateau through the planting of trees for 15 years, and securing key biodiversity targets of the Tchabal Mbabo Flora; Prunus africana and Fauna; the threatened golden cat Felis aurata, leopard Panthera pardus and spotted hyena Crocuta Crocuta, and Elephants, inhabit this highland and will therefore be protected through this restoration project.
The Nlonako-Manenguba Landscape chain aligned along N-E to S-W axis separating West Africa from the Congo Basin. This area extends roughly from 4°49’-4°56’N and from 9°56’-10°01’E and Mt Muanenguba is an extensive mountain located between longitudes 587022- 600053m East and latitudes 559648-547907m North. The Nlonako-Muanenguba Mountains is characterized by high levels of endemism, especially among the amphibians and reptiles. Nlonako-Muanenguba Mountains harbor almost half of Cameroons’s amphibian diversity (200 species) and more than half of the most threatened Cameroonian frogs and toads. Amongst these are three Critically Endangered amphibian species (Cardioglossatrifasciata, C. manengouba, Leptodactylodonnerythrogaster), Conraua goliath) only known from few sites on these mountains; while sixteen others are listed as Endangered and five as Vulnerable. Our initiative aims at conserving the rich biodiversity mountains of Cameroon, this mountains host most of the endemic species especially amphibians and reptiles. This landscapes host 182 species of amphibians.
SURUDEV is seeking funds to carry out ecological research to conserve this rich amphibian biodiversity that will support communities to be economically resilient.
The Mpem and Djim Landscape
The Mpem and Djim National Park was created by a prime ministerial decree on the 12th of May 2004 Situated in the Centre Region of Cameroon, the Mpem and Djim National Park is a vast natural space of 97,480 hectares bounded by the loop which form the Mpem and Djim rivers, two long rivers hosting a rich and diversified aquatic fauna. Recent studies have revealed that the Mpem and Djim Park harbours 76 species of mammals. Among these, rare species (panthers, chimpanzees, hippopotamus, and elephants) are threatened to decline and they even at risk of extinction (MINFOF, 2011). The fact that the park is located in a transition zone between the forest and the savannah gives this protected area a special floristic and faunal character (Atangana et al; 2018).
We therefore seek funding to carry out sound ecological research and determine the conservation status of the Nigeria-Cameroon Chimps, Gorillas, Elephants, Wild cats, Small monkeys. Carry out inventory on avifauna species, amphibian species and develop a community strategy to conserve these species and mitigate wildlife-human conflicts.