Wildlife Alliance

Wildlife Alliance is the leader in direct protection to forests and wildlife in the Southeast Asian tropical belt. Our mission is to combat deforestation, extinction, climate change, and poverty by partnering with local communities and governments.
Jun 2, 2016

Southern Cardamom Forest now a National Park!

The Southern Cardamom National Park landscape
The Southern Cardamom National Park landscape

Wildlife Alliance received exciting news recently when Cambodia’s Minister of Environment announced that the Southern Cardamom forests will now be protected as a National Park!  Wildlife Alliance’s forest rangers have been working with Forestry Administration to protect this vulnerable forest since 2002.  The forest’s newly designated name, The Southern Cardamom National Park, will provide the land and animals with additional legal protection and will help prevent future degradation to the vulnerable habitat. The Southern Cardamom ecosystem is vital to maintaining one of Asia’s last remaining elephant corridors, a strip of land that allows elephants to move to different habitats, and one of the region’s last continuous rainforests.

Wildlife Alliance’s forest rangers stepped in to protect the forest in 2002, when a freeway connecting Cambodia and Thailand opened, cutting through 1100 km of previously untouched forest.  The freeway not only fragmented the forest, but also gave poachers easy access to the previously untouched heart of the forest.  In April 2002, poachers took the lives of 37 elephants and 12 tigers, and land grabbers lit 37-40 forest fires every day for slash and burn farming.  This crisis spurred Wildlife Alliance to protect the forest.  At the time, there were no rangers or central government protection in the Southern Cardamom forest. 

Wildlife Alliance has played a critical role in healing the forest by employing 98 forest rangers across 6 ranger stations in the Southern Cardamoms, protecting approximately 2 million acres of land. 

The forest’s designation as a National Park will help provide legal protection the Southern Cardamom forest and prevent against forest fires for land grabbing, illegal logging, and wildlife poaching for many years to come.  Thank you for your support of our forest rangers.   Your support has been critical to getting the Southern Cardamom forest to where it is today, a new National Park.

Beautiful waterfall in the new National Park.
Beautiful waterfall in the new National Park.
May 3, 2016

Small scare as young gibbon falls from tree

Gibbon mother, Saranik with her baby Spider
Gibbon mother, Saranik with her baby Spider

All has progressed smoothly with our work to restore wildlife back into the historic forests of Angkor, which was previously wiped out by over-hunting. Pileated gibbons Baray, Saranick and their baby, Spider are still enjoying the forest in the Angkor forest. We continue to place food a short distance away near a stream. This is a management tool and ensures the gibbons do not visit areas frequented by tourists. Spider is becoming more precocious by the day and is proudly displaying the customary confidence shown by all of his kind when travelling through the trees. Several times we have seen him fall, but he always caught himself and there was no damage. Each time Saranick was beside him in a trice, reassuring him and herself that her precious infant was unhurt. However, on December 13th, the branch he was using broke. Spider plummeted downwards and hit the ground. Saranick picked him up in an instant and returned to the trees. A gibbon’s body is very light and Spider was fine. Hopefully this experience will teach him to be a little more careful in future.

Bayon and Tevy, the other pair of gibbons we released, are also well. They have mated a few times and although male Bayon moves around a lot he returns to his release enclosure, where we place food for them. Tevy now accompanies Bayon when he travels and she has become much more confident in the trees. The relationship between the two gibbons has clearly become much stronger and we often see them playing happily together.

Thank you for helping support this important project, and giving these endangered gibbons a chance at life in the wild. 

Staying close to mom
Staying close to mom
May 1, 2016

The Chi Phat Green Ambassadors

Chi Phat Green Ambassadors
Chi Phat Green Ambassadors

According to a new study by Australia’s Griffith University, ecotourism can be the critical difference between the survival and the extinction of an endangered species. The study used models to evaluate the net impact of ecotourism on nine threatened species, and found conservation gains for seven of them. Now in its 9th year of operation, Wildlife Alliance continues to see significant success with our Community-Based Ecotourism (CBET) model in Chi Phat. Revenue and number of tourists have steadily increased over the years, and community members have been able to achieve long-term financial stability by operating eco-friendly guesthouses, home stays, and restaurants and working as trekking guides, boat operators, and taxi drivers. The increase in revenue has allowed the community to increase the number of forest patrols conducted by Community Rangers. Their anti-poaching efforts have led to the reduction in the number of traps laid by hunters in the forest, and has resulted in a greater observation and documentation of endangered animals and their tracks.

An added benefit of the program has been the spread of the concept of recycling and waste management. To improve the tourist experience, it became necessary for the community to address their inadequate waste management system. Local authorities and school principals showed a strong support for recycling in the community and a self-sustained youth group called The Chi Phat Green Ambassadors grew out of this interest. The Chi Phat Green Ambassadors are a local volunteer youth group made up of 8th and 9th grade students that meet with Wildlife Alliance staff to discuss and address various environmental concerns in the community. The group plays a key role in litter education and prevention, as well as clean-up initiatives in villages, along trails and at forest campsites. The group has made a significant impact in cleaning up Chi Phat, and we know they will take this experience with them as they go into high school. In the meantime, the next class is already geared up and excited to take over! Show your support by liking their Facebook page!

Thank you for making a difference for communities, forests and wildlife in Cambodia!

Chi Phat Trash Clean Up
Chi Phat Trash Clean Up
 
   

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