Lemurs and their habitats, heritage to be preserved for communities and nature | WWF

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Lemurs and their habitats, heritage to be preserved for communities and nature

Lemurs and their habitats, heritage to be preserved for communities and nature If we refer to the endemicity of lemurs in Madagascar, their qualities, their specificities and the services they provide for our forests, we realize that nothing is enough to honor them. Fortunately, we were able to dedicate a day of celebration to them on October 30th. However, wouldn't it be ideal if lemurs were celebrated all over the world? Here are already some initiatives to achieve this.

"Informing the public about biodiversity, a first step for its protection".

Madagascar is known worldwide for its exceptional and diversified biodiversity with a considerable rate of endemism of fauna and flora. The lemurs are emblematic and endemic heritages of the country whose 112 species have inhabited our lands and forests for millions of years. Unfortunately, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), nearly a third or 31% of all lemur species are now in critical danger of extinction. The lack of information and knowledge of these species is a real challenge for their protection. Aware of this threat of extinction and the realities faced by these symbolic primates of the Big Island, Madagascar Lemurs Portal was created.

The project, funded by the JRS Foundation since 2016, is implemented by a consortium composed of the Groupe d'Etude et de Recherches sur les Primates (GERP), WCS Madagascar, and the Foundation for Protected Areas and Biodiversity of Madagascar (FAPBM).

Madagascar Lemurs Portal is a platform for sharing information on lemurs through technology. This knowledge portal is built on a solid scientific foundation whose vision is to strengthen the conservation of these emblematic primates of the country through better information sharing.

The site is available to the public free of charge at: www.lemursportal.org.

Its "Online Forum", "Species Databases" and "Map View" components allow exchanges between members and with national and international experts. The platform contains documents, observations and descriptive sheets on lemur species in Madagascar that can be downloaded. To make it more accessible, an off-line version of the portal has been developed. The mobile application is designed for users who do not have access to internet connection, those who work in the field and live near protected areas.

It is alongside local communities, decision-makers, researchers, students and nature enthusiasts that we want to make a lasting contribution to the preservation of these species. Our ultimate goal is to become the essential information tool for the conservation management of lemurs, a treasure of Madagascar's biodiversity.
 Madagascar Lemurs Portal

"Saving lemurs and forests means protecting the future of local communities and their lives".

IMPACT Madagascar, an environmental organization, carries out the Sifaka Conservation program, in collaboration with the association GERP. The Sifaka Conservation program was created after the discovery of crowned Sifaka groups in forest relics along the central and northwestern plateau of Madagascar, mainly in five regions : Boeny, Betsiboka, Bongolava and Menabe. The organization is dedicated to the conservation of lemurs and their habitats, including the crowned sifaka and the Mongolian lemur.

The conservation of lemurs and the sustainable management of fragments of dry and gallery forests as well as the surrounding wetlands are at the heart of IMPACT Madagascar's initiatives. In the Sifaka Conservation program, we take a holistic approach to biodiversity conservation and work to bring about sustainable change through a variety of direct and indirect approaches. Our direct conservation activities include the creation of protected areas, implementation of habitat patrols and environmental monitoring, reforestation, establishment of firebreaks, and regular habitat monitoring and surveillance. Some of our most indirect conservation work takes the form of community development activities, including the provision of livelihoods, capacity building sessions for community members, environmental awareness, hands-on environmental education and ecotourism.

We are convinced that the only way to achieve sustainable success is not only to protect nature, but to support the communities that inhabit these places. This is one of our core values as an organization and it is for this reason that the conservation initiatives we implement are led by local people. For example, the patrol boats are all local, the protected areas are managed by community-led conservation associations and the reforestation activities are carried out by community members.

We work to protect Madagascar's lemurs and their habitats, not in isolation but through integrated and mutually beneficial projects that take into account all aspects that make habitats and communities thrive in the long term, together.
Josia Razafindramanana, Sifaka Conservation Program