Conservation through Poverty Alleviation, Int

Conservation through Poverty Alleviation, International, a US-based 501(c)3 organization, helps subsistence farmers displaced by the formation of national parks establish new livelihoods that restore and sustain protected habitats.
Dec 29, 2014

A new insect treat for the New Year!

Fenozara Justin, teaching us to rear  Fulgoridae
Fenozara Justin, teaching us to rear Fulgoridae

"The family Fulgoridae is a large group of hemipteran insects, especially abundant and diverse in the tropics, containing over 125 genera worldwide. They are mostly of moderate to large size, many with a superficial resemblance to Lepidoptera due to their brilliant and varied coloration. Various genera and species (especially the genera Fulgora and Pyrops) are sometimes referred to as lanternflies or lanthorn flies, though they do not emit light." - Wikipedia

But what Wiki doesn't tell you is that SEPALI Madagascar farmers find them a tasty treat that they are planning to raise in 2015! Last team meeting the farmers finally 'fessed-up' to eating insects since they were kids. Our most ardent denier, Fenozaro Justing, is now our most ardent rearer! Fenozaro is starting off the New Year teaching the SEPALI Madagascar team how to rear these pretty, little insects that apparently are quite tasty.  In the picture below you can see them in a few of their growth stages.  The Fulgoridae are in the group of insects that are called hemimetabolous.  Unlike the Holometabolous insects like the silk moths (who have a caterpillar, pupa and adult stage) each life stage of the hemimetabolous insects looks like a tiny adult.  While SEPALI Madagascar can not yet give you a scientific name for the genus, species and host plant, they will be able to in the future thanks to the help our Fenozaro Justin (who is also a star caterpillar farmer).

To learn more about the biology of the Fulgoridae, Bertrand and Chuli have built a new insect rearing house.  The table in the back holds rhinocerous beetle larvae but there is plenty of room for Fulgoriade as well.

Thank you for all the assistance you have given CPALI and SEPALI Madagascar for helping us to bring our insect rearing program to reality.  We know that with the revealed interest and help of the whole team (farmers, artisans) we will be able to make insects for protein a viable (and tasty) alternative to bushmeat.

Best wishes for 2015!

Lantern bugs - instars and molt skins
Lantern bugs - instars and molt skins
A new insect rearing house for food insects!
A new insect rearing house for food insects!

Links:

Dec 3, 2014

two chickens and two eggs - the best laid plans

Lalaina covers a woven, water hyacinth mat
Lalaina covers a woven, water hyacinth mat

Just back from Madagascar visiting the team, farmers and training center. It was great to see everyone and all of the terrific work they are doing despite Madagascar’s difficult economic circumstances.

Unfortunately, we have a slight setback in our plans – our first chicken with an egg.  On the verge of surging ahead, we have discovered that we don’t have a ready source of bamboo to use for building. Unfortunately, the factory that treats the bamboo to protect it again insect damage and fungi in Tamatave was burnt down. While there is a functioning factory in Tana, the bamboo would have to be sourced from the Maroantsetra area, shipped to Tana, treated, and shipped back – a prohibitively expensive operation. We had wanted to use bamboo in hopes of mitigating the impact of harvesting wood, already extensive in the area, and encouraging farmers to begin to grow bamboo for construction and market. However, it now seems that the only other option is concrete. Will we be able to build the inspiring training center with soaring lines as we had planned? Is there anyone in our GG family who would like to invest in building a bamboo treatment in the Maroantsetra area? I can guarantee your first customer.

Our second setback - our chicken and egg conundrum - We don't have electricity. We have discovered that the closest electrical line is not close at all. We had not planned to build a training center when we first purchased the demonstration site thinking it would be used only for farming. We will now need to find a new site that is on the electric line (likely to be out of our price range), lay a new cable (definitely our of our price range) or design a combination of wind, solar and generator power. If we simply buy a generator then we will be greatly increasing our program costs over the long term and tied to purchasing diesel. The upshot is we can’t start building until we have electricity. Are there any “engineers without borders” available to help us plan an electrical system to support the center’s proposed current and future activities?

Despite those problems, Mamy sent me 200+ meters of textile back with me! Since adding a second species of silk producer (Ceranchia apollina) to the program, we are beginning to build up enough stock to supply a small designer, send samples to companies and sell the material online.  Have you visited www.wildsilkmarkets.com lately to view our textiles? In addition to textiles, they team is designing an array of small products to be made from the scraps. Mamy’s jewelry is quite beautiful as are the hats and clutches whipped up by Mario and Lalaina – the purse interior is made from woven water hyacinth leaves. The purse the exterior is wild silk and emboidery --  these items will soon be online for holiday sales – and just wait until you see what we have planned for Valentine’s day . . . .

Thank you for your continued support – as soon as we get our chickens in a row, we hope to be cracking some eggs.

All the best,

Cay

Mario
Mario's wild silk coasters
Wild silk clutch
Wild silk clutch
Mamy
Mamy's latest creations

Links:

Dec 2, 2014

two chickens and two eggs - the best laid plans

Lalaina covers a woven, water hyacinth mat
Lalaina covers a woven, water hyacinth mat

Just back from Madagascar visiting the team, farmers and training center. It was great to see everyone and all of the terrific work they are doing despite Madagascar’s difficult economic circumstances.

Unfortunately, we have a slight setback in our plans – our first chicken with an egg.  On the verge of surging ahead, we have discovered that we don’t have a ready source of bamboo to use for building. Unfortunately, the factory that treats the bamboo to protect it again insect damage and fungi in Tamatave was burnt down. While there is a functioning factory in Tana, the bamboo would have to be sourced from the Maroantsetra area, shipped to Tana, treated, and shipped back – a prohibitively expensive operation. We had wanted to use bamboo in hopes of mitigating the impact of harvesting wood, already extensive in the area, and encouraging farmers to begin to grow bamboo for construction and market. However, it now seems that the only other option is concrete. Will we be able to build the inspiring training center with soaring lines as we had planned? Is there anyone in our GG family who would like to invest in building a bamboo treatment in the Maroantsetra area? I can guarantee your first customer.

Our second setback - our chicken and egg conundrum - We don't have electricity. We have discovered that the closest electrical line is not close at all. We had not planned to build a training center when we first purchased the demonstration site thinking it would be used only for farming. We will now need to find a new site that is on the electric line (likely to be out of our price range), lay a new cable (definitely our of our price range) or design a combination of wind, solar and generator power. If we simply buy a generator then we will be greatly increasing our program costs over the long term and tied to purchasing diesel. The upshot is we can’t start building until we have electricity. Are there any “engineers without borders” available to help us plan an electrical system to support the center’s proposed current and future activities?

Despite those problems, Mamy sent me 200+ meters of textile back with me! Since adding a second species of silk producer (Ceranchia apollina) to the program, we are beginning to build up enough stock to supply a small designer, send samples to companies and sell the material online.  Have you visited www.wildsilkmarkets.com lately to view our textiles? In addition to textiles, they team is designing an array of small products to be made from the scraps. Mamy’s jewelry is quite beautiful as are the hats and clutches whipped up by Mario and Lalaina – the purse interior is made from woven water hyacinth leaves. The purse the exterior is wild silk and emboidery --  these items will soon be online for holiday sales – and just wait until you see what we have planned for Valentine’s day . . . .

Thank you for your continued support – as soon as we get our chickens in a row, we hope to be cracking some eggs.

All the best,

Cay

Mario
Mario's wild silk coasters
Wild silk clutch
Wild silk clutch
Mamy
Mamy's latest creations

Links:

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