Another beautiful example of a project combining Animals, People, and the Environment: Jane Goodall’s Roots&Shoots students plant fruit trees between two forest patches for chimps to migrate and enlarge their genetic pool.
The Tchimpounga Natural Reserve, which was recently expanded from 75km2 to 523km², is an important habitat area for chimpanzees. The reserve consists of scattered patches of forest, marsh land and savanna grasslands. There is an estimated population of 140 wild chimpanzees dependent upon the reserve for their existence, as the forest habitat outside the reserve is rapidly being destroyed by human population pressures. The only way in which we can ensure not only the survival of these individuals, but also the continued well-being of a genetically viable population is to increase the forest cover within the reserve. This will provide the necessary increase in food and shelter for the chimpanzee population to expand from 150 to 500 individuals. JGI Congo has already spent the last two years experimenting with indigenous trees that are feeding trees for chimpanzees to see which ones are most likely to propagate and flourish under artificial planting conditions. Seven species have been identified and will be used to establish either corridor links between the forest patches, or to expand the existing patches by planting along their edges. Tree nurseries will be established to grow the following species : Pseudospondias, Cola gabonensis, Trichoscypha acuminate, Mamea Africana , Eais ginensis , Dacryode and palm varieties indigenous to the reserve.
As part of the project activities, JGI Congo includes an educational, training component in order to demonstrate to school aged children from the surrounding communities the importance of conserving their forests and restoring them when needed. This learning activity engages the future beneficiaries of forests in the region with the hope that they will gain the knowledge necessary to respect and protect their forests and wildlife when they are adults.
This project is closely linked to our annual tree planting event in Belgium: for every tree planted in Belgium 1 euro will go to our JGI project in Congo. So far, 5000 euro has been raised thanks to our participants planting at previous tree planting events in Belgium in 2011 and 2012.
By becoming a member part of your membership fee will go to this project, but you can also can donate directly to this project by making a transfer with reference “Tree Corridor Congo”. You will receive a certificate for your donation. All banking details are provided on our contact page.