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ABCG Event: Improving the conservation of Cross River gorilla with mobile device-based law enforcement monitoring

by Portal Web Editor last modified Nov 21, 2014 01:08 AM
WCS with ABCG invites you to a brown bag presentation featuring: Dr. Rich Bergl, Curator of Conservation & Research, North Carolina Zoological Park.
When Nov 21, 2014
from 01:30 PM to 02:30 PM
Where African Wildlife Foundation 1400 Sixteenth Street, N.W. Suite 120 Washington, DC 20036
Contact Name Kamweti Mutu
Contact Phone 240-495-4688
Attendees Rich Bergl
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A significant challenge in conservation is the quantification of threats, conservation effort, and the impact of conservation interventions.  Conservation staffs of protected areas working to protect wildlife and their habitats are often limited by the availability of data, technical capacity, and access to appropriate technology and analytical tools.  Such limitations are often particularly marked in regions where highly endangered species occur and where the degree of threat is high.  The Cross River gorilla (Gorilla gorilla diehli) is Critically Endangered and occurs in an environment where the threats posed by bushmeat hunting, conversion of forest for agriculture and small-scale logging are significant.  In 2008, in partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society and several national agencies, we implemented a mobile computer-based monitoring system across the range of the Cross River gorilla to assess both threats to the gorillas and the extent of law enforcement activities.  This system, based on the Cybertracker software application, has allowed us to quantitatively measure threat, protection and biological data using information collected during the course of ranger, ecoguard and research patrols and surveys.  The use of an intuitive user interface designed in consultation with the end-users, ruggedized hand-held computers, and an easy to use suite of analysis tools has allowed us to document both successes and failures in Cross River gorilla conservation.  Lessons learned in the deployment of the Cybertracker-based system are now being used to inform the SMART law enforcement monitoring tool, recently developed by a broad partnership of conservation NGOs.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Rich Bergl directs the Conservation and Research program at the North Carolina Zoological Park and has been involved with wildlife conservation and research in Africa for over a decade.  Much of his work has focused on the Cross River gorilla (Gorilla gorilla diehli) the most endangered of the four gorilla subspecies.  He has worked in Nigeria, Cameroon, Uganda, Liberia, Rwanda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Kenya on topics ranging from primate behavior to population genetics to protected area management.  He is one of the founding members of the SMART Partnership and is currently involved with implementing SMART for conservation law enforcement monitoring at several sites in Africa.  Dr. Bergl is a member of the Executive Committee of the IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group great ape sub-section, serves on the conservation committees of the International Primatological Society, the American Society of Primatologists and is a Conservation Fellow at the Wildlife Conservation Society

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