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Wildlife inventory measures

Janika Wendefeuer is responsible for biomonitoring in the DSPA

We are currently in the process of conducting a wildlife inventory in the DSPA. The question to solve is: how many medium-sized and large wildlife are there in the protected area?

Janika Wendefeuer, responsible for biomonitoring, explains the process of inventory currently ongoing in Dzanga-Sangha Protected Areas:

The inventory started in February and had to pause for 3 months due to Corona pandemic. The transects will be ready by the end of August.

A transect is a path along which one counts and records occurrences of the objects of study (e.g. animals). There are six teams in the field, collecting data on so-called line transects. These teams collect information mainly concerning dung and nests as well as direct observations. With these informations we can estimate how many individuals of elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees or duikers live in the park.

In addition, camera traps are used. Each team installs additional camera traps in the reserve that stay in the field for at least one month.

We will have a total of 330 cameras covering an area of 3,865.32 km2. Within the video footage from the cameras we can estimate in more detail how many individuals of each species we have in the protected area. There are six teams in the field, collecting data on so-called line transects.

The chimpanzees on the video filmed by one of the cameras





A phenomenon that has already been observed in many parks with big monkeys like chimpanzees, gorillas and bonobos. The chimpanzees are quite excited and relaxed in front of the camera. The area where the video was taken is not subject to any strong human presence, so there is no hunting pressure. That means the chimpanzees are not afraid but interested. In other areas we have videos of chimpanzees that discover the cameras and flee in panic because they are generally afraid of humans.

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