COMACO, from snares to plowshares:
A conservation and human wellbeing success story.
Community Markets for Conservation is a private sector, not-for-profit social
enterprise in Zambia. It was established in 2003 to halt wildlife poaching and
illegal tree cutting for charcoal by helping poor rural families to increase their
food and income security through improved farming practices and marketing
of value-added agricultural commodities. COMACO supports 178,891 farmers
in the Luangwa Valley, providing them with improved farming skills, seed
loans, a premium price for their crop surplus, and a dividend if they comply
with sustainable farming and wildlife, and forest conservation best practices.
Maize yields using COMACO methods increased by 63% and net income was
37% higher than for farmers who purchased inorganic fertilizers. Between
2012 and 2018 the number of food secure families increased from 67–84%. Elephant poaching has declined in all but one COMACO district, poaching is now
primarily conducted by nonlocal hunters, and leg-hold snare detections by
community game scouts have decreased significantly in COMACO areas.
Increasing food and income security while reducing deforestation and
unsustainable hunting for ~$US10 per farmer per year is cheap and can be replicated in Zambia and other nations in Africa.
Sep 29, 2020
CECIL Act threatens successful wildlife conservation efforts in African countries
The CECIL Act, name after the lion killed by a hunter in 2015, would prohibit American hunters from importing animals harvested through legal, regulated means.
Aug 03, 2020
Sri Lanka: Rich in biodiversity, and human-wildlife conflict
- Human-wildlife encounters have increased rapidly in recent years and go beyond elephants and leopards. Competition has grown over the shared space between humans and wildlife due to encroachment, deforestation, habitat degradation, and climate change, putting humans and animals in conflict over land, water and resources.
Humans often clash with macaques and langurs as the monkeys are attracted by garbage, are being fed or try to find new habitats due to deforestation. Peafowl are emerging as top agricultural pests due to their expanding range and distribution over the last decade. - Crocodile attacks mainly affect poorer communities that are dependent on unsafe bodies of water, and they often lack awareness of the animals’ behavior. - There is an urgent need to increase awareness around human-wildlife conflict and crop foraging as well as to employ non-violent mitigation measures that take into account the interests of both humans and animals, including fences, garbage management and habitat conservation.
Aug 01, 2020
Most laws ignore human-wildlife conflict—this makes us vulnerable to pandemics.
Never before have we seen how the human use of wildlife can yield such catastrophe, as we have with COVID-19.
Apr 10, 2020
Periyar Tiger Reserve.
A Trendsetter in Converting Poachers to Protectors
Then a range forest officer with Periyar Tiger Reserve (PTR) in Kerala, Raju K. Francis still remembers that distant afternoon in 1994, when he arrested elusive forest brigand Aruvi from a hideout near an ancient cave in Theni district of Tamil Nadu, where local gangs used to hide smuggled sandalwood. Aruvi was the leader of a 23-member team of wildlife poachers and sandalwood smugglers operating from K.G. Patti, Varusanadu and Lower Gudalur regions of Theni, which were around 20 kilometres from PTR.
Mar 10, 2020
Cornered by PAs:
Adopting rights-based approaches to enable cost-effective conservation and climate action
Progress on many commitments made in past decades to respect the rights of Indigenous Peoples in conservation is too limited.
Rights violations affect IPs culture, well-being, livelihoods, and security without evidence of resulting conservation outcomes. Protected Areas Financing is limited and heavily public spending, not support of Indigenous and community conservation. Regular global monitoring of progress and access to grievance are key to accelerate progress or secure conservation outcomes.
Mar 10, 2020
Armed ecoguards funded by WWF 'beat up Congo tribes people'.
Exclusive: Inquiry into $21.4m conservation project reports ‘credible’ evidence of abuse.
Armed ecoguards partly funded by the conservation group WWF to protect wildlife in the Republic of the Congo beat up and intimidated hundreds of Baka pygmies living deep in the rainforests, an investigation into a landmark global conservation project has heard.
Feb 10, 2020
Thailand's disappeared Karen activist.
Billy and the burned village.
An oil barrel discovered at the bottom of a reservoir in a nature reserve in Thailand in April 2019 has cast a light on a story some would rather stayed hidden. It is a tale of powerful men and the lengths they will allegedly go to keep their crimes covered up. But it is also the story of one woman's determination to get justice for the man she loved and the community he was fighting for.
Jan 04, 2020